Confederation*) of Democratic Simulators

What is C.D.S.:

CDS is a virtual micro-nation, existing for currently (Tue Oct 15 2013) 9 years in second life. The population is a little over 50 citizens. The reason to be there is to champion the DAVID-239 Government systems proposed, to try them out and bring them to people their attention. Hopefully some will see that it has value, and then also wish to adopt these ideas in the real world. At the same time it becomes a test of how this system can be implemented (or not) with real people who have never heard of it, and generally behave as humans in the real world also behave.

It is good to realize that this is not meant as a play-acting or "role playing" game. It just so happens that a lot of poeple find it amuzing to own homes in the second life platform. To own a small space for a home, you need to rent it within a simulator which contains usually 256 x 256 meters of ground surface. Someone might rent that from the owners of second-life, and then rent smaller homes to other people for less money. Such a conglomeration of homes is in a way what CDS is. However while most simulators are run by their owner/renter who has all the powers there, the CDS is an experiment to create a democracy to rule the system.

The difference between role-playing or play-acting within second life, and not doing so, is for example to pretend that you really needed food within second-life. That is play-acting, because you don't need food. To play-act is to create a game, using the second-life platform as your 3D engine/system. CDS is not role-playing or play-acting, and the issues of the Government are therefore those things that "really matter" within the space such as the height of the rent costs, what the place should look like, how the elections are occuring, but also who is going to organize some sort of party perhaps where some nice music can be played, and so on. I suppose there is a certain overlap because people like to see similar things in second-life as exist in real-life, probably because to look at abstract mathematical shapes is boring. There are also play-acting or role-playing nations within second-life. A typical difference with play-acting is that those have a lot of rules for everything you can do, and they are in a way creating a movie of their own making on the fly, where the players pretend to be a character in a wider coherent story. In the CDS (as is the case of the vast majority of second-life simulators) there are no such rules, everyone can do what they want (essentially); although not necessarily create/build what they want (!). Others will after all be seeing it too. That is an example of where the Government may get involved.

What is second life ?

Although it is a form of entertainment (though not necessarily), to rent space in this platform (in second-life as such) costs real money (it costs computer resources to run the servers), perhaps not unlike it also costs money to go on vacation or buy paint for a painting. It isn't strictly necessary for survival, but it's fun to do for some. It can be viewed as a form of communication, though that doesn't quite cover it. The possibilities for creativity are good in second-life, and there is no 'story line' given. Essentially second-life is nothing, until people build something and/or you go to those places where others have build something. The platform creaters have also created some things, but this is a small part of the overal virtual reality. The total space of the virtual reality is quite large, so that although there can be 30 000 (thirty thousand) people in it at the same time, there is a great amount of space where nobody happens to be at that moment.

There are as many virtual activities possible in secondlife as can be imagined. Space however needs to be rented and payed if you want to own it and build something you want there. The level of creativity possible in SL is roughly unlimited, and also includes a fairly powerful computer programming language to animate the objects build.

The short of it is: it's not easy to detail what second-life is, to those who have never seen it. Once you see it, you probably understand better then any amount of text could.

Continuing about CDS ...

CDS is a small part of the entire second-life space, at 5 'simulators' it is 5 * 256 * 256 meters on the ground surface, with the ability to build upward to roughly 4 kilometers. In this space is a Bavarian loosely middle-ages village on a hill, with to the north down in the plane a Roman neighborhood that if it was actually Rome it would be populated by the wealthiest people with the richest homes. In this Roman part is the Government housed, which is probably a reference to the early democracy of the Republic of Rome (who got it from the Greeks). CDS exists within second-life now for 9 years continually, which is said to be the longest any such endeavor within second-life. All kinds of things have happened in its history, including splitting out of whole groups who went to form new virtual nations.

The Constitution is loosely inspired on the neo-Greek American representative democracy. It allows the Constitution to be changed. One of the interesting things about it, is that - perhaps because of its longevity - it seems to be like an actual full scale nation in terms of day to day politics. Perhaps human behavior being generally what it is will come out in the same ways both in the CDS as in full scale real-life nations. This makes CDS an interesting testbed, besides being a pretty place (though somewhat laggy, as we say in 'SL'.)

This is the current Constitution of the CDS: CDS Constitution This is the location in second-life of CDS: CDS SL-URL This is the website of CDS: website This is the forum of CDS: forum

*) This is not a Confederation, the name is wrong. It is a unity Government without any (con-)federal components, not even in the sense of having regional lower Governments or even private sector local groups. It is as much not a confederation as a nation can be. The suggestion to change the name, or actually make it a confederation, has been ignored.

Chronological entries on CDS

log entry: Tue Oct 15 09:12:19 UTC 2013 (Jos)
entry_2013-oct-15

log entry: Fri Dec 13 16:43:52 UTC 2013 (Jos)
entry_2013-dec-13.html