If you all thought that the noise about Second Life (SL) was about to die down, forget it (previous e-Clippings posts here and here). Part of that noise had to deal with some conjecture that if you applied the Gartner Hype Cycle to Second Life, then SL was moving down from the Peak of Inflated Expectations to the Trough of Disillusionment. Well things may have shifted around a bit. (See also the Truth About the Numbers here)
In an article on CNNMoney.com, David Kirkpatrick announced (I really don't know who was first but David was early) that Linden Lab, the company behind SL, is releasing an open source viewer for its client software. The news was also available over on the official SL blog here, where at last count it had received 250 some comments. The comments ranged from the enthusiastic to the apocalyptic.
I think that regardless of whether or not this turns out to be a good thing or a bad thing and all Cassandra-like predictions aside, it really is just too early to tell, SL may have just extended its hype cycle.