I know how Second Life runs some of its internals. I don't know how I know, I just do. I just had a sense of deja-vu, sort of. Follow my train of thought:
Kyhwana woohos! Wired mentioned Taps on their thing on cybersex! http://www.wired.com/news/culture/0,1284,66423,00.html
Hydra hahas. "We're among the cybersex elite"
Hydra woofs, "At least they recognize AOL as the slum of the intenet. That makes me happy."
This leads me to thinking about slums vs. upper-class areas on Second Life. Maybe the upper-class areas, for people who pay more for their accounts, have a higher prim count per parcel, thus allowing more elaborate building?
But maybe prim count is limited because of server resources? So that would mean that the upper-class areas would be run on more powerful servers. Okay, that's reasonable.
I wonder what it would take for someone to get their own server on the Second Life network?
Which, along with #3, sparked a memory of something I read somewhere on Second Life's site, about geographic distribution of servers mirroring the layout of the Second Life world. Basically, each sim (or a collection of sims) is managed by a dedicated (or shared) server. The interconnections between the servers are possibly laid out similar to the boundaries between sims. Communication via IM, which crosses sim boundaries, is handled via messaging between servers. When you teleport, you are being handed off to a different server. That's why it takes time. When you walk/fly between sims, though, I havn't noticed a significant lag. Perhaps the sims cache information about their immediate neighbors, so the handoff is transparent.
I think that's why it costs about $1k to buy an island - you are basically paying for the server that will run your island.
In other news, I wanted a Pepsi this morning, but the fridge (at work) was out of stock, and I didn't have any bills small enough for the soda machine upstairs. Eve (the secretary) didn't have change for a $5, but loaned me $1. As I got to the top of the stairs, I thought to myself, "Hmm, maybe today will be a donut day, and there will be enough change in the box to break a $5. Or maybe the snack guy will be refilling the machines, and be able to give me change." Sure enough, there were two boxes of Dunkin Donuts sitting on a table in the break room, AND the snack guy was there refilling the machines. I got my soda with the dollar Eve gave me, then made change from the donut box (it happened to have $4 in bills) and bought a donut. Mmmmm, donut.... Happy days!
The bottles of Pepsi I bought yesterday and today both came with "buy one, get one free" caps! Woot!