Saturday, June 09, 2007

Virtual Banking (7): DNB Bank Norway

Another international Bank has opened up shop in Second Life, this time it's the Norwegian DNB, not to be confused with the Dutch national bank, also called DNB.

After ABN AMRO, ING (The Netherlands), Wirecard (Germany) and Saxo (Denmark) this is the fifth major European finance company coming to Second Life (with BNP Paribas still in development)

The sim starts of with a neat 3D model of the sim (very popular these days), which is devided into several smaller islands. The overall theme is summertime Norway, as I'm told by one of the freelancers who worked at this build. A main feature is the auditorium (right) which is a good build.

The second main build is a hovering globe -which is quite low on textures - and though most of the sim is bilingual (Norwegian and English), this was solely Norwegian, so I can't give you the full monty on this.
Then there's a small terras showing the Nobel-Peace-prize winners and a series of gazebo's intended as learning centers.
Throughout the sim various Norwegianish things appear, like sunken ships, swimming orca's, campsite, windsurf and diving spots, small fishingboats etcetera.
The build is developed by a company called Design Container, working with several Freelancers. This makes up for several degrees of quality in the build, some are neatly texturised, others are a bit low on textures (pic left, the gallery), or have a few textures askew. The DNB NOR car (right) is very primitive.
In the pic below an example of where it's neatly done, even tidal influences are considered in this build (left). The other one, an ancient worship tree is a little buggy in the script (right).

All in all I must say that the overall quality of the build varies enormously, and also the theme is too unfocussed. It's a bit of everything and I'm not sure where the root of this problem lies. It could well be that DNB Nor didn't have a fixed idea of what they intend to do in Second Life, or there was a basic plan that saw several ideas gone wild because of working with too many different freelancers.

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Thursday, April 12, 2007

Virtual banking (4) Saxo Bank

In january and february virtual land was falling short and the Lindens had a large que of requests. Early march we saw an explosion of new sims. One of these new launches was the Saxo Bank, an online investment bank, based in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Jeffrey Limpele, executive director of quantitative analysis at Saxo Bank (whatever that means), told SLNN that the bank ultimately plans to offer "leveraged Forex trading on the lindens... We want to give you access from Second Life to your Real Life foreign exchange." We'll see.

The bank shares the island with a volcano viewable from the bank's roof terrace. There is also a bizarre Rio carnival parade that processes around the island. Whether there is some deep symbolism in the use of the volcano and carnival, or whether it is an amusing whimsy.

The site is built by Beta Technologies
Pictures kindly provided by Sir Aleister Kronos

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