I hadn’t heard of Mappa Novus until someone dropped it in the comments here. The Mappa crew is doing interesting work creating maps of the virtual world of Second Life that seem to be mashed up with the Google Maps interface, and overlaid with data layers about population, land sales, etc. On top of that, they’ve layered some advanced edition maps that you can subscribe to for $7.95 a month or $19.95 for three months, which give extra data about land sales. The whole deal seems to be able the real estate business, as there’s also a land search tool available. They also have printed maps available for sale.
With Second Life’s native search tools badly in need of an overhaul, Mappa Novus could potentially capture some customers, though it’s not clear how they’re collecting their data and the site doesn’t do much to explain it. Still, it’s an ambitious undertaking, and the first shot I’ve seen at a professional set of data-mining tools for the Second Life geography. Similar projects have been launched before, but I haven’t seen one as seemingly comprehensive as this. I’d be interested to know if anyone has used Mappa Novus, and whether you think you’re getting your money’s worth.