Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy SL Halloween!

At least in SL I don't have to sedate any animals. :) Have a safe one!

Bridges on Aintree

All of the islands are now connected by bridges. They're all different and not one of them will be used as an example of great engineering - but they work. :)

Now I just have to finishing the terraforming, put in the trails and I can start planting. :)

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Downloading a new browser version .......

I had been living with the cache problems I mentioned earlier - and some wierd stuff happening when I was building. But it wasn't until I ported onto Aintree and saw the above that I finally went and found the solution.

For future reference - if you download a new version of the browser, go into Zone Alarm and update the trusted zone designations. Makes a big difference. And the ducks will thank you. :)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The Next Big Drama

I'm going to attempt a little prognostication. (Note that I'm not referring to all Open Space landlords here!) I'm going to say that the next group of residents screaming and yelling will be legitimate victims of the great Open Space Land Barons - in addition to the Artists, Education Representatives, Not for Profits and those of us who actually buy and use Open Spaces for their intended purposes. Those new victims I'll call the Pseudo-Owners.

Imagine if you will that you enter Second Life and want to buy land - but an island (which is appealing) is pretty expensive. Along comes your friendly real estate tycoon who offers to buy an open space for you - they can do that because they own a full prim island - so it's not a problem for them. You just have to pay L$20,000 up front and then enough every month to cover tier plus some so they make their money back. You go on the land profile as the owner and get full god-like powers - well it's your island.

Then the OS price increase arrives and all these Open Space Land Barons decide to protest by abandoning their open spaces. They can do that because all the money it cost them to have the OS created has been paid to them by the "new owner". So it's annoying but it won't cost them anything to abandon it (except the loss of future revenue which they don't expect to get anyway because of the tier increase).

It gets abandoned and suddenly you - the supposed owner - discover that you don't actually own your island. You were a tenant - you had no rights and no ownership in that land. In fact, you realize, the real owner could have kicked you out at any time and you would have had no recourse.

I suspect there will be more of these Pseudo-Owners than we can guess. And they will be justifiably angry (no matter how many times somebody points out that if they weren't paying tier directly to Linden Labs then they weren't the owner). And it's going to be loud. I think at least some of them will go after their landlords in rl.

PS - There was a lot of speculation in the Concierge Group that the LL were doing this to eliminate competition from places like Nautilus. They also couldn't understand why Nautilus prices were going so high. Let me suggest that Nautilus offers something that those Open Space Land Barons don't - in addition to a good build, Nautilus offers community. Something to be prized in any universe.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Open Spaces

OK my two bits. I saw the first hour or so of concierge yelling and screaming after the announcement. I wasn't there for the invited chat with Jack so I don't know how far things have progressed - except that the yelling and screaming has pretty much the same tone this morning.

The Lindens know that the huge increase in purchases of Open Spaces isn't just due to the improvements in the land store - a big percentage of the sales are to people looking for a cheaper source of land they can then exploit and make money off of. Totally contrary to the stated purpose of Open Spaces. One person on the chat said they own 100 of them - well they didn't buy them to create more oceans for sailing or gardens/forests for people to visit. People have been taking advantage of/manipulating the system and it's come back and bit them in the ass. I hope that in the next couple of months a solution is found that doesn't punish those of us who are actually buying and using these areas for the intended reasons.

There were a few of us voices last night saying things like "we brought this on ourselves" or "they weren't designed for what you're doing" - but those voices were ignored. Please, please Linden Labs don't forget us too eh? And that includes the Educational and Not for Profits!


I saw this Steampunk Castle by Alex Bader and fell in love with it. I've had a couple of houses and a wizard's tower - but this is the first dwelling that feels like home. I've spent a couple of days changing textures to personalize it and I love it even more. Now I just have to furnish it. :)

Update: In the interests of full disclosure - this castle is high prim, so it forced a move I'd been planning for later this year - another full island. So yes, Aintree Maple is born. And it took less than 30 minutes for delivery. Now I just have to go move a castle. :)

Update: A bit of advice - if you're moving a castle, or any large build - try to ensure you will want the same elevation/orientation in the new location. Adjusting either is going to be a trial.

One other SL note - My cache hasn't been the same since I loaded the latest browser version. But dang the terraforming tools are powerful!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

SL is Doomed!

I don't usually read JIRA reports - and I don't want to over react - but here are just a couple of the comments on this JIRA:

Ever since the release of 1.21 many prims in SL now are round and orange with faces on them. They were not there before. Many places I know well now have some prims like this. Seems like maybe one in ten prims in SL are now suffering from this bug.
I am furious that Linden Labs can release a viewer with such an obvious rendering bug.

Soft Linden - 21/Oct/08 02:18 PM This is a known regression in our sculptie texture encoding, and we apologize for the inconvenience. Owing to the use of macro block encoding, organics with indentations at regular intervals - as with the segments of a pumpkin - can line up with the macro sample points and create a false range of interpolation for the intermediate sections' batherskite subsample prattle table. In the most degenerate cases, generally occurring around the belt of the organic, this can result in symmetrically cut or dimpled sections not unlike the recesses of a power outlet or, amusingly in this case, a face. As a workaround, you're encouraged to upload any yam, gourd or pumpkin-like sculptie textures using an older 1.19 viewer, or to ask others for texture that may have been uploaded prior to this breakage. We're estimating that a server side fix for the majority of these cases will roll shortly after October 31 - the remaining cases will require manual intervention.

Vektor Linden - As soon as I can get a solid repro for this, I'll import it ASAP. So far this has me completely puzzled - This could be a problem if it isn't addressed by midnight on October 31st.
If your content is becoming small, orange and rounded, and ESPECIALLY if a face appears on it, please drop a copy of it on my profile so that I can figure out what is happening. If we don't squash this bug soon, I'll go out of my gourd. At the very least, we can look for good pie recipes.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

So Proud!

Doesn't look like much does it? And when I tell you it took me hours and hours to build this bridge you're going to think I've lost it. But look at this view:

Today I successfully built a bridge that joins two of my islands - a bridge you can walk across in both directions without.falling.through! Yes!!!!!

I knew it was possible - I've walked across bridges that worked (Razzap's Martian technology I think) - just didn't know how they did it.

I love figuring things out even if it's stuff everybody else already knows. I don't have to break new ground - just achieve what I'm trying to do and I'm happy.

I can work on better designs etc. now but, at least I know I'll be able to join all the islands without that crossing a boundary dive. :)

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Ghost People

I've been working when I can on those three open spaces - only managed some minimal terraforming so far. So there's nothing on them - no interest. Maybe one of the horseback riders might want to run around or something - but there's nothing there to attract people. This would lead most people to conclude that the traffic on these islands would be low to zero. That's true for two of them.

The open space I mentioned before, with the map image that seems to indicate it has buildings, has had traffic numbers ranging from 140 to 287. ?????

I was on this island a couple of days ago with a friend - we were looking at my terraformer. I didn't mention the other green dot - but he did. He noted the location was under the water and that the person stayed ghosted. I've seen them before - 1 or 2 at a time - so far 3 different names. They've all joined SL about the same time - a year or so ago. None of them have anything written in their profiles. I didn't want to mention it cause I thought I was being paranoid.

I used to use a tower on the mainland as my home - I would see a Ruth appear in the air outside my tower a number of times a day. Not always the same Ruth - it would cycle through 15 different names. All having joined about the same time - none of them with anything in their profiles. Always exactly the same location - always Ruth. This went on for months. I tried approaching some of them but they would disappear if I did. Seemed very odd.

Particularly when the same Ruths starting appearing next to my garden on the mainland. Different region - no logical connection. Same 15 Ruths - perched in the air in the same location. That made me worry that I was developing some mental issues. :) It's one of the reasons I finally sold my land and bought an island.

The friend who was with me and saw my little ghost has been in SL much longer than me. He's a mentor - he's not unfamiliar with things here. He thinks it's very strange. So I've decided it's not me. It's them. Whoever they are. :) mmmm good time of year to write a ghost story eh?

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Dresden Gallery - Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden

I would love to be an artist. I'm a gardener, but I still dream of being an artist - and I love to look at the works of those so filled with artistry and talent that they can take your breath away. Today, for a reason which is really not important, I was looking on the web for some information about Canaletto. I found a reference to the Dresden Gallery in Second Life - so I went to visit.

With all the time I've spent in Second Life, with all the places I've visited, I can still be blown away by a location/experience. This is a place you should really visit..

From the notecard you receive when you arrive:

Welcome to the Old Masters Picture Gallery (Gemaeldegalerie Alte Meister) of the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden (Germany), one of the world's most famous museums!
Here you can visit 750 masterpieces of European art history including such famous works as Raphael’s “Sistine Madonna”, Giorgione’s “Sleeping Venus”, Rembrandt’s “Self-Portrait with Saskia“ and Vermeer’s “Girl Reading a Letter”.
The museum is located in the Zwinger, a magnificent Baroque complex in Dresden. The Old Masters Picture Gallery is in a specially built neo-Renaissance style building on the north side of the Zwinger. It was opened in 1855.
- On the ground plan you can find the most important artists.- Meet other visitors, make new friends and discuss the gallery’s art treasures with other people online. - Take part in art education events. - Find the most important information about each work with one click of the mouse. - Visit the shop, where you can obtain free posters and clothing printed with art motifs. - Guestbook: Record your aesthetic experiences on a Notecard, which will be sent to the guestbook on the home page There you can also read about the impressions of other visitors.
The Gallery is powered by SECOND INTEREST AG:

What that doesn't tell you - at least not explicitly, is that you are visiting a museum exhibit with all the bells and whistles. If you go into the Canaletto room not only do you see his fabulous paintings, if you click on any of them (or any of the exhibits) you get an informative notecard about the piece. But more than that ........

Because important Canaletto's have recently been cleaned and/or restored - xrays have been taken which show you much about his creative process. And the museum includes them in the exhibit.

There is at least one lecture hall, a shop downstairs, a Friends group which appears to have events.

When you first arrive in the museum there is another notecard - and one of the things it mentions is that you can acquire free headphones which will facilitate an audio tour as you go through the museum.

I don't know if you can tell - but I love this place. I'll be going back again and again. Education isn't just for Cyberloom's students - although I'm thrilled with the work she's doing. It's for me too - and isn't it neat that it's available in SL. :)

Friday, October 17, 2008

Second Life - Bad Dream?

I spent the morning working on a commission and when I was done I flew around just checking things out and saw this. All of my fountains had acquired a bright red circle in the middle. Huh? I'm think "How the ?" and "How long"?

Luckily I was still chatting in IM to my friend/client and she offered to tp over to check - and sure enough she tells me they all look perfectly normal to her. No red circles. Good thing she checked - I would have spent hours fixing them! Instead I just logged out.

I assume when I go back things will look normal............I hope.

Update: I logged back in and saw this.

Guess I'll try deleting my cache..................sigh

Update: I deleted my cache, downloaded the new viewer, logged in and both kinds of fountains were now red. Turns out my beacons were turned on. But they were only highlighting some of the scripted water - I mean if all of the scripted water had turned red I would have figured it out. So it's still strange frankly. But it's fixed. :)

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Celebrating a RL Birthday - Wrath Paine

So a long time ago my friend Wrath did a really great blog post - and in the middle somewhere he revealed that his rl avatar (or whatever we call him) has a birthday on October 17! Well I made a note of the date and planned to celebrate it somehow. Of course Wrath will actually get to partake - his rl avatar will just have to enjoy it vicariously, but what the heck.

Just when I was trying to decide how to acknowledge the event - I met Punky Hatfield of Inspiration Cakes - (that's just one of her locations). Wrath's rl avatar had recently posted an image that really spoke to him - that's it at the top of this post. So I gave a copy to Punky and she incorporated it into the cake.

But she didn't stop there - she made a more life size wall appropriate version for him as well. I figure he'll spend hours on the couch, sitting, staring, eating double chocolate cake, dreaming ............. Well he's a grown boy. I can't tell him how to spend his time! :)

I was going to just leave them somewhere in his office tower - but it could take him forever to find them. So I'll probably just pass them to him before he logs on with an appropriately off key rendition of "Happy Birthday". :)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Thanksgiving with Joaquin Gustav

Because I worked over the weekend, I didn't cook thanksgiving dinner til yesterday (Monday). As a digestive I went to the Sunset Jazz Club to heart Joaquin Gustav. He's there every Monday at 5:00 SLT. :)

Friday, October 10, 2008

Adding Open Spaces

I know it's going to be a lot of work, but having 3 more open space islands is exciting! I'm looking forward to this. Just a couple of comments about the process........

  • It took less than 10 minutes to get the open spaces delivered. Wow!
  • They all came with the same terraforming - I'm pretty sure I specified different topography for each. Not a big problem, just more work to set each of them up. I think if you order more than one at a time the store has trouble separating the different instructions. Again - not a big problem if you don't mind terraforming.
  • I think one of my open spaces has been recycled. That's a screen shot of Aintree Parterre on the map - it shows a different topography and some buildings. And no that's not how the island was delivered - just a curious sidebar. :)

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Aintree Expansion

My name is Honour and I've lost my mind!

Make that cubed!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Burning Life 08 - Thank you!

Burning Life 08 - Ayiki's Mannequin Art

If it's at all possible - get down to Burning Life today - try to see some more of the amazing installations. I really wish that if it's going to be this big that they'd give us more time to explore and experience the work. If you only have time to see one more - or a few more - go visit Ayiki's Mannequin Art - then go see what else is in the neighbourhood. I'm really really glad I did. :)

Abstract Avatars

I went to Burning Life this morning - it's a good time to find those installations you missed. There aren't many around so it's much easier to sightsee. As I was making my way between sims I saw this really interesting avatar.

Now, lately I've become interested in "abstract avatars". I've visited Joshua Nightshade's Sector7 (sorry, I couldn't tp in to get the SLURL for some reason) and purchased a few of his mechanical ones. So when I saw this one this morning I had to go to the source. The source turned out to be Yeti Bing & Yoa Ogee, World's Greatest Smile, Shop, Playground . I'm pretty sure this will turn out to be something everybody else in SL knew about - but I've just discovered it. Here are the two I purchased. :)

They have lots of different (and some just very odd) avatars - I just thought these two were cute.

I have no idea when or where I would use them - but I love having them. :)

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Burning Life 08 - AM Radio

I'm afraid I've left it too late to make it to all 12 of the juried installations. I'll try to do more tonight - but at least I made it to AM Radio's.

Ahh to have 1/1000 of his talent!

Drama - fizzled

So I was ready to make a stand. I avoid drama like the plague - but I felt very strongly. I wasn't going to blog about it - first because you just get slammed if you post an unpopular opinion and the issue gets ignored; second because it seemed like a "private" issue within the group. So I posted my concerns in the group's forum. A few others also posted similar concerns (and to be fair I wasn't first so it's not like I was the trail blazer).

There was no response to the concerns in the forum. I understand there was some discussion in the group yesterday, but I was at work and missed it.

I decided that posting no comments about our concerns (never mind actually considering them) was a comment in itself. Therefore, I would leave the group. But I would make a "statement" as I exited.

I went back to the forum and said what I just said about there being no comment in response to our concerns. Then I quoted JellyBean Madison and said "kkthnxnbai". I thought that made a nice short, yet dramatic, exit line.

Then I removed myself from the Ning.

Turns out, when you remove yourself from a Ning - everything you ever did, said, posted etc. gets erased. Including short, yet dramatic, exit lines.



Saturday, October 4, 2008

Burning Life 2008 - Burning the Man

Sometimes you just get really lucky - I called up Burning Life on the map thinking I might go for a quick visit and saw all these green dots - but they weren't at the main stage. So I tp'ed in to take a look and heard Philip Linden shout hello to everyone. I figured I'd better stick around. :) Good thing too - they were Burning the Man!

Torley has done a great video (well duh) of Burning the Man.

Tomorrow they will be burning the temple - this is from the Burning Life website:

Temple Burn - Sunday October 5th at ???? (not sure yet)
The temple is located here: Surely bound to be an amazing event with copious amounts of hedonistic dancing and music. A must for letting down your hair and dropping you clothing. I bet you always wanted to show off that customer skin... so now is the time.I hope to see some of you over there for the final couple of days events.

You'll have to check on the website or with SL to get the final schedule.