Data relating to Muslim take-up of digital alternative worlds is scant, and anybody who doesn't identify themselves primarily by their religion won't easily be distinguishable by casual observation. Clearly there are Muslim communities in Second Life, arguably the internet's best-known virtual world; but they seem out of place. Then again, in Second Life, doesn't everything seem out of place?
What began as an experiment in the socialising potential of an immersive experience in cutting-edge technology has degenerated into an ethically ambiguous playground devoted to random sexual encounter, violence and the behavioural excesses largely denied in "first life".
Within this context, Muslim communities aren't offered the opportunity to express anything like a normal, multi-faceted lifestyle; and to encounter religious Muslims there feels like stumbling across an Amish village in Tokyo. They build virtual mosques, visit a virtual Mecca and distract themselves with an intense focus on religion.
In Muxlim Pal, the focus will be elsewhere.
For the Guardian's technology pages.