The following FAQ will help you learn some of the basics of using Second Life. Here is a QuickStart Gude from Linen Labs.
If you print this PDF out and keep it near when you are learning Second
Life it will help greatly. I'll be adding some video instruction, but
you can access beginning video demonstrations here.
Linden Labs has over 287 video tutorials located here.
How much does it cost?
You can participate in Second
Life for free. If you decide you want to take advantage of the
"inworld" products, you can optionally register your user name with
your credit card and purchase Linden dollars for inworld purchases.
There are lots of free items.How do I get started?
How do I insure that I can get back to TOLC Mountain Campus?
- Click this link.
- Click the Sign Up button in the resulting window (upper right).
- Complete the online forms for defining your Avatar's name and
initial appearance. You will be asked to give a first name for your
avatar and pick from a list of available last names. If you want your
real name to show you can optionally use something like KeithMitchell
Mubble so that your Second Life first name makes it clear to community
members who you are. Keep in mind you can create other accounts with
different names if you prefer to be anonymous when shopping or
exploring Second Life outside or our education community.
- During the sign up process you will be given the link to download
the current free Second Life application. If you miss that link, click here to visit the download page.
- When you first launch the Second Life application, you will need
to enter your Second Life First Name, Last Name, and password. Check
the box to remember so you will not have to enter this data eacy time
you wish to log in.
- Hopefully, you will enter Second Life on TOLC Mountain Campus. If not click here to be teleported.
- Send Keith Mitchell an email when you are in with your Real Name, Avatar Name and email: firstname.lastname@example.org Keith will send you an invitation to join the TRC Online Learning Community Second Life special interest group (a Ning network) This is where we provide support and announce professional development opportunities in Second Life.
In order to make our Second Life island your "home," you will need to be invited to join the island group, titled TOLC Educators
Share your Second Life First and Last name to Keith, Warren, or Shawn
either by email or find them inworld to request membership. After
accepting this invitation, from the World
menu, choose Set Home Here.
This will insure you automatically start at TOLC Mountain Campus when
you log in. Additionally, no matter where you are in the metaverse,
choose Teleport Home
from the World menu to jump to our island. Control shift H (windows) Command shift H (Mac).How do I move around?
There are lots of answers to that. Here are a few basics:
How do I sit down?
- Arrow keys to walk.
- Press Fly button at bottom of screen to fly, then use arrow keys for direction. This will take you up to about 2 meters in height. Or use the F key on your keyboard to toggle flight on and off.
- Press the Page up and Page down keys
to fly as high as 200 meters. On a limited keyboard such as on many
laptops, you might need to press Function key along with up arrow key
and down arrow key to access page up and page down. If you click the
page up button briefly you will jump up and come right back down. Press
it longer to to fly and keep pressing it until you reach the altitude
you desire. Then use arrows keys for controlling your flying direction.
- Teleporting is also a way
of moving from one place to another and is required for moving large
distances between Second Life locations. If you click a SLURL on a
web page it will give you the option to teleport. If you find a new location via Search you will also be given an option to teleport. If
someone gives you a Landmark you can double click it to teleport.
When attending a meeting, you might wish your avatar to sit down to look more natural. You can Right Click
any flat surface to sit on it. Often chairs have sit scripts to
control your sitting direction and height. In this case, when you
right click the sitting area a Pie chart will pop up and option to Sit Here
given. Finally, some sit scripts are written so that when your mouse
hovers over the sitting area, your mouse cursor changes to an image of
a chair. A single click will set your avatar down. Mac users, the
short cut for Righ Click is to hold down your Command Key (open Apple)
while you click on something.How do I chat?
You can enter chat text in a small chat bar
at the bottom of the window. Press the return key
if the chat bar is not open and Esc key
when you which to close the chat bar. This will be local chat (within
20 meters). When others respond you will see their answer layered on
top of the Second Life view at the bottom left of your screen. In this
mode chat text will fade away in a few seconds. This kind of chat is
useful for short comments or when you need to keep the screen fully
The Communicate Window
better for most chatting. Open the Communicate Window by pressing the
Communicate button, bottom of your screen, or by typing Control T
(Windows) Command T (Mac). At the bottom of this window, select the
Local tab for local chat or if someone at a distance is chatting with
you, select the tab with their name. If some one shares a URL with you
in chat, you have to use the Communicate window for this link to be
By default your view is normally from behind you and slightly above. So
you are looking at the top and back of your head in a forward
direction. With your Avatar standing still, you have the ability to
move your camera (view). This allows you to "zoom" in close to
something to small to see or even to look around corners. Practice
the follow key strokes until they are second nature.
- If you hold down the Alt key (Win) or Option key (Mac) and click on an object you zoom in and out and rotate your view around the object. In effect the object you click on becomes the center of rotation of your camera.
- While still holding down the Alt/option key, add the Control key. This will keep the zoom constant but now allow you to shift your angle of view up and down.
- Add the Shift key to move your camera higher or lower.
- Press the Esc key to get your view view back to normal.
landmarks, note cards, items you purchase, etc all wind up in your
inventory. Access your inventory by by clicking the Inventory button at
the bottom of your screen or type Ctrol/command I. To find items in
your inventory you can browse or use the search field at the top. The
recent tab will narrow the list to just the items obtained since you
logged on. Search the word Worn to find items worn by your avatar. Right click items to wear them or to detach or take off worn items.
Often purchased items will come "boxed." To actually transfer the
contents to your inventory, you have to drag the box to the ground in
an area you have build privileges. (our sky sandbox) Then right click
the box and select Open in the pie menu. Finally click the transfer
items to inventory. They will arrive in your inventory in a new folder
usually named similar to the box name. If you accidentally select a box
to wear, you can remove it by right clicking the box and choosing
detach. To remove the box from the ground, right click it and choose
take or click the more button and then delete.
Your Inventory has a folder at the bottom labeled Library. This
folder contains free items you can use or wear. Everyone's Library
folder is identical.
How do I change my appearance?
How and Why do I Add Friends?
When you created your account you
selected from one of the default avatars. It is a good idea to keep
your basic appearance constant so that people will recognize you, but
you may want to spend some time trying out different looks before
making that decision. You can easily change clothes
by dragging an item out of your inventory on top of your avatar. If
you drag a shirt then it will replace your current shirt.
Before you experiment you might want to save your current appearance
so that you can easily get back to it. To do this Right Click your
Avatar and choose Appearance. At the bottom left of the resulting
window, click Save Outfit
Check the boxes for what should be saved. This will add a folder in
your inventory that will contain all the clothes and even the body
shape you were using. In the future, simply dragging this folder from
the Inventory to your avatar will bring your avatar back to normal. It
might be a good idea to save two versions of a given appearance as a
backup.Finding and using Complete Avatar set ups
There are free and for sale complete Avatars which include the body
shape (Skin), hair, and sometimes complete wardrobes. Unfortunately
shopping for these inworld can be bring you to in to contact with
offensive side of Second Life fantasy. I have found a few places on
education islands that have free Avatars for you to "buy" for zero
dollars and put in your inventory. Often you can start with one of
these and then modify them using the Appearance dialogue and different
clothes to make a unique avatar. Click one of the following links.
After finding the avatar images, Right click the ones you like and
choose buy from the pie menu that appears. You will get a confirmation
that you are spending zero dollars before accepting. If you find other
locations for free Avatars, please help me add them to this list:
You will be notified
when people who are in your friends list log in or off. Your friend
can not tell where you are, only if you are logged in or not.You can initiate a chat or voice conversation
with anyone in your friends list
(anywhere inworld), and send or receive Teleport request
The friends list is accessed from a tab in your Communicate Window or
Right Click your avatar and choose friends. To initiate a chat, select
their name then click the IM/Call button. To teleport them to your
location, select their name and click the Teleport button. To request
that someone be your friend, you can Right Click their avatar if they
are within sight. If not, Find them within the Second Life Search,
and send the request from their Profile page.Joining Second Life Groups
Joining groups is the best way to stay on top of professional
development opportunities in Second Life. Once you join, you will
receive notifications of meeting opportunities which include the
starting time and a SURL to the location of the meeting. Times are
always given in SL time which is Pacific. From the Second Life app,
type control F to open the search window. Click the Groups tab and
enter the name of the group. When you find the group description page,
click the Profile link. Then click the members tab in the profile
window. There you will see a join button. Here is a list of groups
you can find and enjoyed. Please submit education groups you enjoy to
add to this list.
ISTE: Educational Technology Assoc
Discovery Educator Network
MICA - VW Astrophysics
Science and Art Collective