Thursday, May 23, 2013

Second Life Advert in the Wild

Seen on the Interwebs 23 May 2013 at 23:10 US Eastern time.
The featured resident is Apple May of Apple May Designs,
a shop for women's clothes and skins.
Kudos to CC Columbo for the find and screen cap.

Monday, May 20, 2013


Not entirely sure why I'm posting this here, other than I ran across an interesting road network while being run out of a shop by griefers today. The Circuit-La-Corse in an attractive and interesting road and part of the Corsica Network (Web) on the Mainland. Right now I have a huge backlog of roads I'd like to blog about "road trip"-style, but this I just had to mention right away. There is a nice Rezz Zone in Wyrisong (SLurl) and every yellow dot you see on the map is another. If you have time for a drive, this road looks like a great place to visit.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Bay City's 5th Anniversary - May 19th

There I am, enjoying a sunny Caturday and patiently waiting at the Fairgrounds for the Bay City 5th Anniversary Party, but it starts at about 1:00pm SLT tomorrow (May 19th), after the parade starting in Bay City - Harwich (SLurl) arrives at the Fairgrounds (SLurl). Entertainment will include GoSpeed Racer, Christov Kohnke, Celticmaidenwarrior Lancaster, and Rosedrop Rust. Don't be surprised if other popular groups famous around Second Life show up, too, in addition to some well-known Lindens and LDPW moles. And you know that wherever Marianne McCann goes, fireworks follow.

As you can see from this map (below), there will be several prime viewing places for the lead-up parade. Four groups will leave from the Bandshell and head out toward Route 66 at Noon SLT. The procession should last about half an hour from start to finish.

There's going to be lots of fun for everyone, whether you are a Bay City resident or not, so be sure to drop in before 1:30pm SLT when we are supposed to wrap up things. While you are waiting for the fun to start, check out the LDPW scrapbook about the building of Our Fair City.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Apparently I'm Short

Apparently I'm quite short ...

[15:02] Coagulate Visitor Metrics v2 (Free): WARNING: Your height does not meet the minimum required by the rules of this sim, you must be at least 1.77m (5'10) and you are 0.20m (0'8). Please correct this immediately or you will automatically be removed from the sim in 300 seconds.

I saw that in my offline messages email earlier today and it hit again when I logged in at the same spot I logged out at last night (see pic). I wasn't booted from the sim, though. The Shape Editor tells me that I'm 1.99m/6.55ft tall.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

What are they thinking?

Anyone else seeing adverts like this? For some reason my ad filter isn't working so I've seen quite a few more lately and it is fairly interesting how often potential competitors – from simple games to other 3D worlds – show up on Second Life Web pages. The DAZ advert I can understand, but can't The Lab set up some sort of rubric for which advertisements show on their own pages? You wouldn't see adverts for FoxNews on the CNN site, would you?

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Flufee Strikes Again

I really, really don't know why I did it. After an offline email from FLUFEE Infostream from inside Second Life, I picked up the free Talking Flufee Soundbox iOS app (it's available for Android, too). I keep so few very silly apps and certainly I've never had a so-called "fart app" on any device –– until now. That middle button on the screen shot you see below? It makes Flufee stand up and fart.

But I get ahead of myself. You might know this little critter from the all over Second Life. He gets around and almost everyone who sees him takes a snap for the My SL feeds. Or you may have seen the Flufee on Meshion show on Draxtor Despres's YouTube feed (here). Or you might have bought a Dirty Lynx Flufee "tribute" avatar from Loki Dancer (Tribute because there is only one actual Flufee) in-world or on the Marketplace. I did, and that's how I got the notice. Flufee keeps a customer database.

So now I have a dancing, noise-making Flufee on my iDevice. Apparently he talks, too, but since I don't talk I'll have to wait for my brother to come home and show the feature to me (I'm guessing that's what the mic does, but when I tap it Flufee just sits there). Yes, I spent the 99-cents for the in-app upgrade so I can avoid adverts and unlock special features. You can preview the extras 15 times before needing to pay to keep them so you can change outfits, atmospheres, and then some for free.

Is this fun? Jury is still out. I've tried it on my cats (they don't react to anything but Real Life thunder) and I know better than to bother mom with it. But it is kinda cool to see the Flufster dancing. Check out this video to see a sample then think about getting the app for yourself. Who knows ... the SL/App Store relationship just might help save Our World from the on-going decline that so many virtual pundits are crying about.

Bay City's 5th Anniversary!

Bay City 5th Anniversary Poster
BAY CITY, SL (6nd May, 2013) - In May of 2008 the Linden Department of Public Works unveiled its first project, the themed city area on the Second Life™ Mainland known as Bay City. Now, as Bay City turns five, its community invites everyone to join us in celebrating this milestone.

Anniversary celebrations will kick off around noon SLT/PDT on Sunday, the 19th of May, with a parade lineup at the bandshell in Bay City - Harwich. The parade will make its way down Route 66 beginning at 12:30 p.m. SLT/PDT, concluding at the Bay City Fairgrounds in the North Channel region.

A live concert will kick off at 1:30 p.m. SLT/PDT at the Fairgrounds, featuring Christov Kohnke, CelticMaidenWarrior Lancaster, and RoseDrop Rust, and including GoSpeed Racer of KONA Stream providing music leading into the event.

All Residents of the Second Life grid are encouraged to participate. Celebration goods are available at the Bay City Community Center, in the Daley Bay region, for those who wish to be a part of the parade, and able viewing area is provided. The music event is also open to all who desire to attend.

Bay City is a mainland community, developed by Linden Lab™ and home to the Bay City Alliance. The Bay City Alliance was founded in 2008 to promote the Bay City regions of Second Life™ and provide a venue for Bay City Residents and other interested parties to socialize and network. It is now the largest Bay city group, and home to most Residents of Bay City.

Some Bay City Citizens
Just a few of Bay City's residents and friends.

Marianne McCann
Bay City Alliance

My Non-SL Day

Real Life keeps me busy. I'm sure it keeps everyone busy, but lately I've been extra busy. Well, if you count sitting in my Mom's room with an iPad, keeping her company for most of the day "busy." The iPad is important because I use it to talk to Mom, most in writing via the Penultimate app but sometimes via Proloqu2Go.

But I also get to have some fun with games, keep up with people via Message, Facetime with my brother, read books or the news, surf the Web, watch videos, and look up things for Mom when she's not well enough to grab her own iPad. My iPod Touch is always in my pocket with the "dumb" phone I have for texting non-iOS people (I can text for 911, for example).

I like USAToday, though not for in-depth news. I love Circa on my iPod Touch for very high quality news summaries. Flipboard is mostly annoying. For weather I primarily use WeatherBug.

Our house has Netflix and Amazon Prime subscriptions so it is not hard to find a good video. Via Comcast apps I can change channels on any TV in the house or watch other on-demand content. Of course there is YouTube and our iCloud video, too.

Amazon's Kindle is our family's book reader of choice because it is cross-platform and we bought a lot of books before Apple's iBooks came out. No one in our family is big on audio books, but my brother and I regularly listen to at least a dozen podcasts between us.

The game I play most often these days is Fairway Golf by Big Fish Studios. It is available for desktops and mobiles, sometimes free if you catch a promotion. Even at full price, though, this wickedly funny and challenging game is worth it.

Android does this, I think, but on iOS I can see all the open browser windows on any device we have or on my desktop computer. Above is one that my brother opened on his iPod Touch. He recently won an iPad Mini so everyone in the family can have a "big" screen to look at ... Even using AirPlay to toss content to one of our TVs via an Apple TV.

Right now, though, I have my brother's Mini and I'm pounding out this blog post in the Blogger app while waiting for the signal to make lunch. Mom has a visitor over so I'm in the living room in a comfy chair, trying to stay awake. Later I might edit this post to add links to the apps and center the pictures since I can't do it here. For now I'm off to other links and some more golf.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

L$800 of fun for L$80

Last night while my wife was AFK I checked out My Second Life (you know, the microblogging feed The Lab gives everyone for free?) and found an "advertisement," if you will, for Espresso Yourself night at The Pen, Marianne McCann's coffee house in Bay City - Mashpee (SLurl) this coming Tuesday from 6pm to 8pm SLT. Apparently, there's a No Mimes policy (see here) so I thought I'd have some fun with the rules and all it cost me was L$80 plus some time.

Immediately I bought a nice L$75 mime costume (with makeup) from Sour Pickles (SLurl) and got to work, adding some funny hair and a pair of black-and-white trainers. Interestingly enough, I have some mime animations in my Inventory. Ask no questions and I'll tell no lies.
So I went to The Pen and staged all these shots for the My SL feeds with commentary promoting the event adding individual comments to each picture. This and the previous picture are about rehearsing for my performance on Tuesday.
Then I saw the "No Mimes" fine print on the sign ... *gasp* ...
(Yes, it's all staged and no mimes were hurt in the production of this photo essay.)
If a mime cries and no one is around to hear, does it make a sound?
Of course, I mounted a protest!
Then I went inside to enjoy some delicious coffee and rethink my protest sign. I tipped the cash register L$5 and that is how my fun total was brought up to L$80 for the day. Easily L$800 worth of fun.
Resignedly, I sat down to plan a new act. Perhaps air guitar?
The "G" in G-rated sim stands for Guitar, right?
Yes, this is my kinda fun. If anyone complains that there is nothing to do in Second Life, tell them that sometimes they have to make their own fun or look a lot harder for events like those at The Pen.

Marianne plans to have Espresso Yourself every first Tuesday of the month from 6pm to 8pm SLT at The Pen (SLurl). Everyone is welcome to participate ... dance, sing, read poetry or prose, tell stories or jokes, show pictures, or just stand and stare at everyone. Just no mimes, it seems.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

SL10B: Photo Contest

PRESS RELEASE: SL10B Community Celebration "Official" PHOTO CONTEST 1

SL10B Team is thrilled to announce its first of two-photo contest this year in celebration of Second Life 10th Birthday

The Second Life community encompasses many incredibly talented people from around the world who have displayed their skills in various forms across the grid over the past ten years. This year the SL10B Team thought - “What better way to involve the residents in the celebration than to hold two photo contests?” These will allow the Second Life community to be creative in expressing this year’s “Looking Forward, Looking Back” theme.

The enjoyment of photography to express yourself and to have fun is all you need to enter, with categories for photographs simply taken inworld, and photographs that have been edited out of world with software such as Photoshop, Gimp or getpaint.

Contest 1: BEFORE the Birthday Celebrations
Contest opens Friday May 3, 2013
Contest ends Thursday, June 6, 2013 midnight

SL10B Second Life Community Celebration Photo Contest 1

Theme: “Looking Forward, Looking Back” Ten Years of Second Life

Photographs submitted by the second life community should illustrate SL10 theme “Looking Forward, Looking Back” over the past 10 years. Deadline for the contest: June 6th 2013.

- Submit a maximum of two photographs per avatar name
- Photos must NOT show the SL10B Community Celebration regions
- Explore the virtual world of second life community for the perfect picture that represents the theme.
- Pictures must be posted in the flickr group “SL10B Community Celebration Photo Contest”:
- Competitors must indicate whether the photograph is Category A (using only the tools available within the browser) or Category B (using tools outside the viewer, such as photo editing software).
- SL10B Celebration Team reserve the rights to use photograph submissions for event advertisement.
- Photos must be PG, make it family friendly keep it clean and FUN or risk disqualification.
- No text on photos.
- Deadline of submission of picture is June 6th, 2013, midnight SLT


# # #

Press Release 2
The SL10B community celebration is looking for volunteers, performers, DJ's, stage crew, and exhibitors.

June 16-23 2013

Go to for sign up and more information.

First come first served basis for time preferences Any questions IM Budster Bashly or Doctor Gascoigne

# # #

Friday, May 3, 2013

Is it Time to Rethink Everything?

Even before The Lab experimented with Second Life in a Web browser, I've been a proponent of finding a means to let Our World be experienced without the need for a dedicated browser even suggesting more than once that Google buy Linden Lab to accomplish this goal. Of course, now the search giant now has Cloud Party (see here) so do they really need SL?

Second Life might need Google, though, or some other benefactor that thinks differently than The Lab does now, as evidenced by the video above ... the beautiful world of Epic's Citadel now runs in a browser using HTML5. It is a world far more detailed that SL yet runs in a browser (not to mention it was on tablets, albeit in dedicated apps, long before this as I wrote about here) whereas the world we know and love still needs specialty software and at least a laptop computer. In technology terms, Second Life is practically an antique. It is time to rethink the need for a viewer.

Which also means it is time to rethink the whole back end, the Second Life server system. Citadel and other games are driven by the Unreal Engine (official site), a wholly different technology than what drives Our World. Any potential transition could would be painful as all builds in-world would likely need to be re-created to accommodate new technologies (from Unreal or not), but after a fashion the dramatic changes in graphics needs and implementations have already started.

Basic prims and some sculpty windows in a failed project. I found a mesh building that was much nicer and had a much lower Prim Equivalent (PE) than what I could build.
When everyone could build with basic prims, everyone built things. When sculpties came along, everyday builders began to depend on professionals to create some high-quality goods or builder's kits that required no more skills than one already had with which people could create what they wanted. Now that we have mesh, the best in-world objects are actually created out-of-world by people with experience, talent, and specialty tools. Experience can be earned and talent can be nurtured, but the cost of the best tools and the learning curve of free tools (i.e., Blender) scare off many who wish to learn. A whole generation of Second Life Residents is growing used to no longer creating but simply purchasing and placing, be it furniture in a Linden Home or complete setups on their own land. A good example is my brother, CC Columbo. He's a very good builder but has been filling his land with mesh items, even replacing good quality sculpties where he can to save PE and improve his experience.

CC documented his latest acquisition, a detailed 1PE mesh bookcase on his My SL feed here and discussed his upgrade strategy in subsequent posts. His Redgrave mesh jeans are amazing, BTW. And check out his cabin in Nangrim (the door is unlocked).
Clearly, Second Life is on the cusp of becoming a service- consumer society rather than a production society. Going away are the times dominated by citizen-builders and rising are the times of citizen-consumers relying on a small but talented cadre of providers. It is time to rethink everything?

Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Tradition Continues

A long-time tradition in Second Life seems to be waning, but it certainly isn't dead. "What might that be?" you ask. Away Games, of course! Whenever you encounter someone who is slumped over in the "Away" pose and is tagged as such and the land permits you to build, you are allowed (obligated, some might say) to enhance the appearance of the un-guarded avatar. I've written about Away Games a couple times on this blog (here) and tag such posts with "away" so they are easy to find.

Birdie Linden at center is a prime subject for enhancement by me and Hexapoda Resident (right).
Without explanation, my friend Hexapoda offered to teleport me to her location where she was standing with Birdie Linden in the aforementioned unattended state. Since Birdie might have woken up at any moment, I can understand the rush to have me drop in and immediately we began to plot. While Hexa was working on a mask to add (see it here) I started on my own addition but fought a fast Auto Return that kept us from getting too carried away.

Eventually I managed to add the word AWAY over Birdie's head and set up the Snapshot with all the name tags showing so I could enter the Decorate A Busy Linden game that Ansi Soderstrom started a few years ago. I used my main account but Birdie was Away not Busy so I figure I got 100 points out of this tagging.

When was the last time you decorated an unattended avatar? Feel free to leave URLs in comments to proudly show off your work. I'd love to see what you've done.