PostHeaderIcon PP #8: Evil Second Life Talking Prims

FailureI've been thinking about my favorite pet-peeves of Second Life for a while now. No, I don't mean all the Linden Lab SNAFUs or the Second Life Viewer bugs or the general wonky nature of the Second Life Grid.

I'm referring to those things in-world, usually the cause of which are residents themselves. So I am going to work my way through my top-ten pet-peeves list. But rather than just plop a bullet lists here, I'm hoping to elaborate on each, so you know why it's a pet-peeve. And that if any apply to you directly, you'll understand why it's a pet-peeve and so irritating not only to me, but likely many, many others who come into your presence.

Number eight in my list is "talking prims".

Okay, this one I need to quantify a bit: not all 'talking prims' are evil, bad, annoying or even unuseful. many prims offer very welcomed talk. So i'll try to be clear as I can with regard to my pet peeve.

First, like facelights, many freebies, and strobing texures, talking prims are an evil cast upon us by creators.

The speaking feedback is intentionally inserted into the script that resides in the prim. I know in the majority of cases the creator had the owner or user in mind when this was done and no ill-will was intended.

The best ones are those that speak only to the owner in 'whisper' mode - also known as "IM" mode where only the owner or user will see the feedback at all.

Then there are some where the feedback is given in open chat. The obvious example we all know of — and the very first talking prims I remember — are the primdicks all males are forced to create or purchase because all males are "outies", we are incomplete as created by Linden Lab. The most notable are the X-cite line of erotic (read: indignant sex-spam) add-ons.

Okay, so in the early days of Second Life, it is likely the scripts simply didn't allow a method to give feedback to the owner or user privately. I'm not a scripter, so I really don't know - but will offer benefit of doubt. Open chat was likely the only option. However, now the ability exists to send all feedback privately to the owner or user.

The line of X-cite naughty bits are all talking to each other amogst the gagglefest of sex-starved pixel-swingers that the creators should set that stuff to only speak privately to the participants instead of spamming the open air with talking distasteful body parts. However, these activities are usually attempted in whatever privacy one can find.

Thus, when idiot users don't know how to click the button called "discreet" and their primdicks and other 'functioning' bodily parts start broadcasting to the world what's going on, it's the idiot user's fault and not the creators. So I'll give X-cite and other likewise 'products' a pass.

In this case, I am referring more or less to those dumb-ass talking pregnantprim bellies for example. Yo, creators of the pregnantprims: how about you take all that really irritating chat-spam and send it to owner only, then the owner can emote her reaction?

Fortunately, I don't run into that pregantprim crap very often. Sidebar: unfortunately, not only must one put up with the irritating chatspam of preganantprims, but they are followed soon enough by butt-fugly-assed babyprims that look like cabbage-patch dolls run through a mangler of some sort.

Other evil talking prims are the freebie crap like "Bonehead's Freebie Newbie Radar for Idiots Version 666" that has to chat-spam the crowd every damned time a user puts it on or logs-into the middle of a crowd.

What, you think I'm going to remember you, mr. Creator and run out and try to find a copy of your chat-spamming piece of junk that offers useless functionality because it's included in too many other, better products so i can irritate the public en-masse, too?

It's a freebie!

The same with many other items, like that "OOC Textiness" tool that role players use often. You know what? As a fellow role player, I beseech you other role players: throw that piece of junk away.

First, it's irritating every time you crash and relog into our midst and it blurts out "OOC textiness for people who think they are being cool and really not: type /666 to speak in OOC terms and irritate the shit out of everyone in a 96-meter radius!"

And second, when you use it, your text is green and thus too easy to ignore because we all are too used to tuning-out evil speaking prims!

Random PortraitThe flip-side of this are those items the user controls and they do so through open chat. Yo, creators: set your objects so they must be controlled via a channel. Especially you, Amethyst Rosencrans. Your collars are the bane of chat-spam because too many RL males-playing SL-slaves are giving collar commands in open chat.

Meh. Amethyst collar is old useless overpriced news anyway. So I guess it makes sense only the boneheads would be the ones using it.

Too many effing idiots with collars, (usually the outdated overprices Amethyst,) are spamming open chat every time they want to change position, or their master or mistress wants to spank them or take control in any way. On top of that, the open-listen in crowded areas seriously adds to sim lag. Set the effing default to a channel because these idiots obviously never read instruction notecards and are all to lazy with netspeak any damned way.
"How r u? want a mstr 2 spnk u? I am best! .abaddowner mstr666 Idiot"

Talking collar spams open chat with: "mstr Idiot now owns wantsPrimSex Badly"

Random PortraitAnd you users of these things: read the effing instruction notecards and change the damned channel away from zero (0) - which is open chat and stop proclaiming to the pixelworld at large what an idiot you are.

Obviously there are countless other evil speaking prims in Second Life, like those damned already-way-too-laggy vendors that the owner feels they need to actively and intentionally set to speak the description of whatever product is on the screen at the time and it changes products too fast for the each to even rez on the screen properly.

Oh, and those shouters in stores and malls that scream "join my grp, plz!" every 15-seconds. And "lucky chairs" that feel the need to shout out the alphabet every 10-seconds for the ... eeew... freebie give-aways. All of this stuff is not only irritating as hell, but adding to sim lag.

If I'm on a hunt and land in the middle of this crap, the place won't get an iota of a chance to even begin to rez before I'm out of there and off to the next destination.

I'd rather deal with evil bling nonsense over evil talking prims.

But that's another story.

PostHeaderIcon The Influence of that Second Life

Snapshot_019Wired magazine — a rag I rarely read through because they've gone so downhill over the last decade, (just my own opinion here,) sometimes produces interesting content that isn't agenda-biased.

One of the more interesting reads I've run across is their top ten 'vaporware, disappointments, false promises and plain old BS'. The first thing I hit when I go in for a quick scan is number 10:
"Home was originally announced in March 2007, but was repeatedly sidelined. And now that it’s kinda here, it's woefully incomplete. Promised features like video sharing are absent, Sony has removed voice chat until further notice, and users from different countries can't interact with one another — a major problem for an international platform."

I actually wouldn't have thought Sony Home would be on this list. But after reading through this 'winner', it all came back to me. It's amazing how much and how quickly humans forget the past.

And it caused me to reflect: when first announced, Sony Home was supposed to be the Second Life alternative. A Second Life-killer. Look, operate and otherwise just be better than second Life.

Problem number one: it can only be used on one OS: Sony Playstation. Windows, OS-X and Linux are all out.

It looks pretty based on all the screen shots I've seen. But a lot of entertainment on the Mac and PC, game consoles - even Hollywood movies all look 'pretty' with stunning graphics or special effects.

But in the end, it's not about the 'pretty-factor'. It's about content. In the case of a Hollywood movie, there have been many flops that look brilliant and beautiful. But the story just plain sucked. Even bad acting can be overlooked if the story is compelling enough. "Dances with Wolves" is a perfect example.

As for the many 'beautiful' games, graphic prettiness is just icing on the cake. It's about the game-play. How does the user interact and what can they do or not do. What is the code law? "Rainbow Six" was number one for years and the 'prettiness' of the graphics was laughable. it was about the way the user interacted.

So many newcomers and even 'olbie' virtual worlds always seem to be compared to Second Life and all have failed miserably in that comparison. In most cases, these comparisons are being made by people who have no idea what they're talking about. Usually destroying any credibility they might have possibly had with anyone who spends five-minutes of investigation.

These comparisons are surely based on content - not the prettiness of Second Life. They just don't realize it. Content is king. The reason Second Life is king is content.

It is the content of Second Life that keeps Second life on the top of the heap as the benchmark to compare all others.

Yes, a majority of the content is all crap because 90% of the creators don't know what they're doing or have no eye for aesthetic design and so on. But when I am allowed to create something, no matter how good or bad - it's mine. It's my baby.

I created it.

On top of that, if I manage to become good at creating, I can sell it and earn enough real money to have my game pay for itself. Some have even managed to make enough real money to actually supplement their real life incomes.

But it's not about that.

It's about the ever-changing, always morphing, user-created virtual world. User to user controversies, agendas, politics, the good, the bad and the ugly. all of it.

It's ours, not theirs.

via Wired

PostHeaderIcon Sorry, I Feel Compelled to Say It.

Mele Kalikimaka, Ha'ole maka'hiki hau.

That's what I grew-up saying.
No, I am not sure that is the correct spelling. But I don't care. it's the intent of the message and a wish of good tiding to you and yours.

I despise political correctness because it is so insincere. So, for all of you whom have figured out how to pronounce what I have written above, it means:

Merry Christmas and a happy new year. Hawai'ian.

Yes, I do say Merry Christmas. The whole purpose of this legal United States Holiday is: Christmas. So, let's take a quickie look at just how stupid and ignorant the politically correct buffoons really are, shall we?

Christmas, a truncation of Christ's Mass. A religious gathering in celebration. many non-Catholics actually attend midnight Mass for the tradition alone.

So, have a merry Christ's Mass.

Happy holidays.

Hmmm... well, first, you bastardize the English language as the way I learnt grammar a single consonant following a vowel causes that vowel to have a 'long' sound, hence the "o" in holidays should have the long sound, which makes perfect sense since the word is a truncation of two words: Holi Days, thus in today's spelling it is: Holy Days.

So, when you wish me "Happy holidays" my return wish for you will be "Happy Holy Days to you, too." And if you don't believe me, ask anyone who's already wished me that as to my reply.

Kris Kringle: Um... this is the same American screw-up that turned "Dachshund Sandwiches" into "Hot Dogs". It's a whack-job on "der Krist Kinder" - or rather in English "the Christ Child" and said in German.

So, I will now say to you all:

Merry Christ's Mass during these Holi Days and may you and yours be safe and happy as you commemorate the Christ Child.

And, a genuine wish for a happy and safe Hanukkah for our friends who practice such.

PostHeaderIcon Closer To Truth Than You Know

HousewifePlumbingPrad does it again over at Metaversally Speaking.

When I see people like James Au actually propping up idiotic ideas like the "best male avatar" contest - yes contest - I serious and realistically just cannot help myself from laughing hysterically and rolling my eyes all at the same time.

I mean - it's Second Life, are you effing kidding me?

A "beauty" contest of any sort in Second Life is a complete and utter farce. It's nothing more than some kind of "i need attention" stunt - and I'm speaking about the organizers - not the ones actually 'nominated' for such a ruse.

So I am going through my blog rounds and Prad hits the nail on the head with his first two entries of his...
Metaversally Speaking Awards 2008!: "Best Male Model: That guy who bought a shape, and a skin, and some decent hair, and nice clothes, and swanky shoes. And can adjust their sliders! Wowser - go you! Have a cookie!

Best Female Model: That girl who bought a shape, and a skin, and some decent hair, and nice clothes, and swanky shoes. And can adjust their sliders! And did it with boobs! Wowser - go you! Have two cookies!"

Dude, you rock!

I have been thinking these exact same words every time there was even a hint, nay even the smell of this farcical idea.

Thank you for putting it so eloquantly.

Nowm for all five of you readers of mine, head over there to read the rest of the list. It might be satire, but most of it is so m uch closer to dead-truth than Prad leads us to believe!

via Metaversally Speaking

PostHeaderIcon PP #7: Evil Second Life Force-feeding

Ballroom in the CloudsI've been thinking about my favorite pet-peeves of Second Life for a while now. No, I don't mean all the Linden Lab SNAFUs or the Second Life Viewer bugs or the general wonky nature of the Second Life Grid.

I'm referring to those things in-world, usually the cause of which are residents themselves. So I am going to work my way through my top-ten pet-peeves list. But rather than just plop a bullet lists here, I'm hoping to elaborate on each, so you know why it's a pet-peeve. And that if any apply to you directly, you'll understand why it's a pet-peeve and so irritating not only to me, but likely many, many others who come into your presence.

Number seven my list is "force-feeding triggers".

You know what I mean.

You need to find something. Or, you happen to just be sim-hopping or exploring. And when you land, you sometimes will be offered a notecard or landmark, and now you also are offered to join the proprietor's group.

Quite often you get blasted with all this stuff at once. Especially when the buffoon who set it up, did so wrongly and the trigger offers multiple copies or multiple times the same exact things...all at once. That on top of the in-world open-chat spam that begs you to accept these things (we'll get into talking prims later.)

Okay, message to all you people who have these things set-up: if you use it to offer rules to your place, okay. I'm all for that and it's understandable because there are way too many idiots who come to your location and find a reason to complain about something then bitch about how they are so offended.

Hey, if you come into my house, don't you dare whine about being offended. You are the one who invades my space. If you don't like it, leave.

So, if I land on your place and it triggers a prim-speaking message telling me your rules - or offers a notecard with your rules, that's fair. Just please don't write your rules in a way that it takes me more than 60 to 120-seconds to read, otherwise, forget it - that notecard can't hit the trash fast enough.

However, what the hell makes you think you are important or interesting enough that I will blindly, willy-nilly want to 1) read the notecard about who and what you are, 2) take a landmark for this place i have never been to before and most likely never will return to and 3) join your stupid group that i have no idea what the spam is like or what it's about - or why would I want to join an update group if I have never purchased anything from you yet?

When I shop I am usually on a hunt. I don't go 'browsing around' and rarely will I ever make an impulse-buy. So that means I am TP-hopping. There already is the patience required with the rez-wait after rez-wait as it is. When I land in a place, the first thing I look for is whether you try to force-feed me all this junk.

It's sure sign your crap is just that. Any quality creator wouldn't do that. The reason is because a quality creator has experience in building/scripting/whatever. That experience comes from being in and using Second Life for some time. And that use experience means they know just how irritating force-feeding is, and thus, they would not do it to their customers because they want those customers to actually return.

The next thing I look for is rez-time. If it takes more than two-minutes for anything to really start appearing, (prims, not textures. I can be patient with textures) - then I am out of there.

However, if I land and I am bomblasted with force-feeding, I can assure you I already am in the search window, clicking on the next stop and peeking at a preview on the map.

The 3D FingerIf your place hasn't rezzed in any respectable manner by the time I close the map to look around - I'm gone. The first clue to your place being a place I do not want to be was the force-feeding. And I can assure you, force-feeding locations go onto a black list.

If you are a force-feeder because you want to make it 'easy' for people: you really aren't. You are making it irritating. If your place is worth coming back to, which is decided after looking around to see if it's worthwhile to even do so, then I will create my own landmark at the exact position i want it.

If I want to join your group, I am quite certain that if you are a quality location, then there are instructions either somewhere on your showroom floor or enclosed with your product. I'll see it when i buy it. Until then, I really have no interest in you or your group.

If you are a club or other social destination, I can promise that if it is a place I want to return to, I will create a landmark and join your update group all by my stupid, ignorant little self. I don't need you to attempt holding my hand and cramming these intangible things down my throat.

So please, stop force-feeding me your garbage. It's garbage because you are force-feeding me junk I don't even now if I want yet. How about you allow me to decide whether I want that stuff.

I would rather not have to click 'cancel', 'cancel', 'cancel', 'ignore', 'cancel' when I land at your place. It is much easier, faster, more convenient and pleasurable to just land, allow the place to rez and start looking around.

If I decide I want to return and participate in whatever you have and offer to participate in, I will grab or join those things on my own. So if i pop into 25 different locations (pretty common number for me while on a hunt,) I will only have to deal with little blue menus infrequently, and then only when I specifically request to do so, rather than canceling and ignoring them 5 times at five different locations.

I mean, my mouse clicker gets enough use as it is. If it fails on me because of over-use, i might have to come after you legally or something.

Though I must admit, besides irritating the hell out of me, it does serve to remind me that I need to update my "Running a Successful Business in Second Life" book I wrote in 2006. Perhaps it's time for a 2009 version and I'll be sure to add a whole new chapter on this subject in the 'what not to do' section.

PostHeaderIcon At Least It's Not ICQ

Butchart Gardens 04 - HDR.jpgThe new Second Life home page is now live. There are a lot of detractors from 'experts' all over the place. These people are experienced opinion-givers and opine on everything.

Okay, now hold-up - I am not slamming-down on these people. Their opinions are valued. But that's what I am saying: they are just opinions and we all have those. In fact, I'm throwing up mine right now.

I like the new home page. The previous home page, if I may now slip into typical cliches, is 'so 2004'. In fact it was boring and typical. When I say typical, I mean it looked like the typical corporate-style home page.

What helped it stand-out before were the wild and interesting images they used to show. However, as Linden lab works hard to streamline Second Life in the public perception, the tattooed, nose-pirced, scantily-clad vampire faerie with horns was a bit much as first impressions go.

Linden Lab needed something that grabs one's attention quickly. Something that is different from the typical corporate look, but yet had a 'gamer' feel. But yet, not a 'gamer' look, it still needs a touch of corporate feel.

A good tween style.

So the detractors complained about many things. Often was the complaint with a "ZOMG! A BLACK background! Black backgrounds are so (insert year here.)"

A good argument I did see was where it is mentioned that there is no focal point on the page. No specific element to grab your eye right off the bat and then steer you throughout the way most pages and advertisements are designed.

However, if you think about it, not having a specific focal point is more or less what second Life is about. You go in-world and you stand at an intersection with an infinite choice of directions, not any one more prominent than any other.

Everything is of equal interest at first. Then, as you explore and sim-hop and meet people and discover things, then your interests start to develop. Your interest piqued and the direction slowly reveals itself.

Stop and think about it: the new Second Life home page is really does reflect this. It breaks rules. Just like Second Life itself does.

Redesigned Second Life Homepage for new visitors going Live: "a redesigned home page for new visitors, those who have never logged in to Second Life. The goal of the new homepage is to show off the breadth and richness of the Second Life experience.  Test results show the new page performed well, so we’re going live this week.  For Second Life Residents, the current homepage will remain the same for now."

I am going to flow against the grain of nay-sayers and say I like it. In fact, because it breaks the rules, and is so (insert year here) is hat makes it different and interesting.

Look at the bright side: at least it's not ICQ, circa 1999.

via Official Second Life Blog

PostHeaderIcon Torley Lives! No really, he does.

Snapshot_055.pngAnything with "Friendly" and "Greetings" in the same sentence has to be our Torley happy-go-lucky-whateveryou'reonIwantsome Linden.

For a time, I almost wondered if his sense of upbeat, never-ending public enthusiasm was considered a bad thing by Linden Lab, causing them to ban him from the 'Official second Life Blog.'

It's a simple announcement about the silly-named "Winterfaire" events in second Life over the next week or so. It's a way to give people some thing to do beyond their usual drama-fests, vampire-biting, poseball-jumping activities that are actually entertaining and...and... dare I say it? Fun!

Yes, some of these activities are actually a lot of fun. My personal favorite being...
"Look for your favorite Linden targets at the annual Residents vs. Lindens Snowball Fight in the following regions: Egan, Hatton, Moritz, and Prancer. December 23rd Noon til 10pm and December 24th, Noon til 7pm."

Hey, Torley: it's good to see a blog post from you on the OSLB. It's almost like a flashback to happier days and more warm-and-fuzzy-times. The silence in the blog makes Linden Lab feel cold to the touch. Especially when the only things coming out of there are basically press-releases that are full of spin and propaganda.

Thank you Linden Lab for letting Torley out of whatever cage you must be keeping him in to be allowed to spread some oof his unique and pleasurable cheer.

So what I want for christmas from you, Linden Lab, is to let him out more often and be allowed to go back to posting on the OSLB, because Torley really is your last hope of casting a positive light on yourself and not seem so cold and sterile and... eeeww... all corporate-eee.

via Official Second Life Bolg

PostHeaderIcon PP #10: Evil Second Life 'Thought' Emotes

[Note; Number 10 was written a couple weeks ago and I though I had it scheduled to publish on the 26th. Oh well, it's here now. Numbers 7, 8 and 9 will be forthcoming. —Ari]

I've been thinking about my favorite pet-peeves of Second Life for a while now. No, I don't mean all the Linden Lab SNAFUs or the Second Life Viewer bugs or the general wonky nature of the Second Life Grid.

I'm referring to those things in-world, usually the cause of which are residents themselves. So I am going to work my way through my top-ten pet-peeves list. But rather than just plop a bullet lists here, I'm hoping to elaborate on each, so you know why it's a pet-peeve. And that if any apply to you directly, you'll understand why it's a pet-peeve and so irritating not only to me, but likely many, many others who come into your presence.

Number ten my list are "thought emotes".

Cute outfitOkay, many if not all five of my readers may be wondering "what the hell is a 'thought' emote?" Well, I'll tell you. And chances are you've already experienced a few in your Second lifetime.

I know this particular pet-peeve doesn't apply to the majority of Second Life residents, but it's still a pet-peeve anyway.

An "emote" is a little something you can do in Second Life while chatting. Whenever you type out your statement and press the enter key, a full colon is placed after your name to indicate you are the 'speaker' of that phrase, like so:

Ari Blackthorne: I think you stink, so I'm outta-hee-ah!

An emote removes the full colon, so instead of it appearing like you are the speaker, it appears more like narration in a book, such as an action statement, like so:

Ari Blackthorne decides that you stink and so he is out of this dump!

The way to do this is simple: precede your statement with /me. Yes, you may already know this. But since you still stick around reading this blog, others may question your level of intellect, so I'm playing it safe.

So you are standing there and someone comes along and you suddenly see this in open chat:

Other Person sees Your Name and snickers at the ridiculous way you dress and squints their eyes at the loud clash of color and the preposterous style you obviously must have, trying hard not to be distracted by the fashion disaster that is you.

The "Your Name" in this being you.

This is a typical thought emote by a greater-than-though, stuck-up dumb-ass on a themed sim, generally intended for role-play. In the case of Gorean or other dominant/submissive-themed areas, the submissives might use the whole 'thought emote' process to slight or insult someone without any in-character consequences.

On my sims, it's not allowed. On any other sim, it's not allowed. The only place this is ever allowed in on your own sim that you own and pay tier to Linden lab for.

Otherwise, you prissy bitch, I will react to your cute little thought-emote-without-consequences and you will feel the consequences for thinking out loud.

If it's a thought, dumbass, I can't read your mind and neither can anyone else. Since reading minds is impossible on so many levels in any world, how the hell can everyone within 20 meters know what you're thinking?


In the case of a role playing sim, I'll react accordingly in-character and role play it out. Hint: I love using my sword to see how many strikes it takes to kill someone.

In the case of anywhere else in Second Life not actually owned by you, I'll just orbit your dumb ass.

Only sadistic, whimp-ass cowards will through insults through "thought emotes" rather than say anything to anyone to their face. These are a the drama queens that are bad news and will eventually bring you serious headache and heartache if you allow them to get to know you for any length of time.

Same kind of person that argues with their other half for three days saying they want to separate. Then after four days of back-and-forth they finally separate. then they come to you and say "we separated for some reason. Who knows why." (Actual example, though rephrased for public consumption here.)

Random PortraitOh and all this doesn't just apply to SL females and and genuine SL/RL females either. It applies to a lot of you guys, too.

And I refer to you with the same expression: you prissy, stuck-up, dumbass conceited princess bitch. I only wish I could gag your "thoughts" too.

PostHeaderIcon Second Life is Dead


That's according to the Blonde known as Sarah Perez.

Only some cliche'd ditzy dumb blonde that all dumb blonde jokes are based on could actually come-up with this.

Oh wait, that's right, I almost forgot. All these idiot so-called journalists have their own agenda and don't report on what is real, they report on things in a way they want them to be. If what they report on is not what they want it to be, they will spin it to make it sound like it's the way they want it to be.

And these so-called news outlets are wondering why their ratings, and hence their advertising is tanking so fast and hard?
The 3D Web in 2008: "What's going on with the 3D web? At one point, it was being heralded as the next big thing.

Is that still the case? Take for example, the virtual world Second Life. Once a booming place where every business had set up their online presence, the formerly happening hotspot is now gloomy and dead. As one-time Second Life reporter Eric Krangel said, hanging out in Second Life is 'about as fun as watching paint dry.'"

And people wonder why I read these idiotic rags and laugh so hard.

Sarah is obviously a ridiculously gullible fool. Anyone who takes what she says as being with any kind of authority or even accuracy is more gullible than she is.

Wow. How can anyone be more gullible than she is?

Oh, hey, Sarah... news for you: Apple, Inc. is dead, too. Just like "Second Life". Oh, and let's throw Microsoft into that mix since Windows share of the OS market is actually down by 10%.

I am sure many other people can think of many other companies and products to throw into the mix.

Hmmm... I'm thinking ReadWriteWeb is pretty dead. 'Deader' than Second life is, that's a factual certainty.
via ReadWriteWeb

PostHeaderIcon PP #6: Evl SL Ntspk, rt?

FailureI've been thinking about my favorite pet-peeves of Second Life for a while now. No, I don't mean all the Linden Lab SNAFUs or the Second Life Viewer bugs or the general wonky nature of the Second Life Grid.

I'm referring to those things in-world, usually the cause of which are residents themselves. So I am going to work my way through my top-ten pet-peeves list. But rather than just plop a bullet lists here, I'm hoping to elaborate on each, so you know why it's a pet-peeve. And that if any apply to you directly, you'll understand why it's a pet-peeve and so irritating not only to me, but likely many, many others who come into your presence.

Number ten my list are "lazy-assed, childish-looking net-speak".

r u rdy to knw wt I syng?

Hllo r u bsy? Wanna fck?

Okay, so this isn't necessarily an issue specific to second Life. It's been around for quite some time and doesn't stems primarily from cell phone texting as one might suspect.

Cell phone texting is where specific initials, (no, they are not acronyms,) are used to convey a message and communicate. Part of this has to do with the simpler method of typing on those funky number-pad keyboards and part of it has to do with the limited number of characters allowed in any SMS (Short Message System) text message.

Much of what is used in net-speak, not to be confused with leet-speak, (such as "u r fuxx0rz d00d!!".) Some net-speak does come from the SMS texting method. "U" meaning "you" and so on.

The first think it tells me when someone says in open chat "Hlo, r u bsy?" how intellectually and perhaps physically lazy they are. I simply have no patience whatsoever for lazy people. srsly.

It's immature and, in my mind downright childish. In fact, if you speak this way in open chat - to me or not - my first impression is "is this person a legal adult in Second Life?"

Some of these texting shortcuts are okay and excepted on a global scale, such as "LOL" and it's variants. But when you are just way too damned lazy to actually are "are you" instead of "r u" - I'm sorry, but you are a dimwit of the highest magnitude.

Snapshot_002.pngNot only will I do my best to utterly embarrass your intellect level, but I will ignore you as well. No, it is not an excuse if English is not your first language. In these cases bad grammar is excused. Shortcutting proper words is not.

So the evil shortcuts include many different implementations, including the most common: R = are, U = you, TY = thank you, and so on. What makes it worse is when people are so damned lazy they don't even bother using upper-case versions of these.

Okay, so it's expected to see this in shopping locations as lazy-assed dimwits communicate about the color or style of the 521st style of hair they are deciding on to purchase, but when it is used in role playing environments, it is irritating exponentially to the 100th power.

It's okay to be a dumb-assed dimwit dip-shit. Just don't bring it to anywhere within my presence. it's one thing when I move into range of you lazy-ass. But if you come into my space and I was there first... I am really tempted to bounce your dimwittedness into orbit.


PostHeaderIcon Weblin In and Out of Second Life: Genius

Snapshot_054.pngWeblin is a way to create an avatar and carry it with you as a visual identity throughout your Internet life - wherever you go through your worldwide web travels.

I've heard of Weblin before. But the idea never really interested me enough to take a closer look and exactly what it is and how it works. In truth, I suspect this is true for a lot of people. And the largest hurdle facing any start-up is adoption. Getting people to know about, and use their product.

There are several three-dimentional and virtual worlds on the market now. The two best-known being World of Warcraft and Second Life. So along come Weblin and Lively and so many others who aren't even making a dent in the public consciousness at large.

Google decides to shut-down Lively and for good reason. The market for virtual worlds is saturated. Many more will be shuttered or fail outright.

The creators of Weblin however, have decided on a different approach: Open a service within Second Life that will allow you to create and replicate your avatar (and overall look) into the Weblin format so you can use Weblin and still be the same you that is found in-world inside Second Life.

Okay on the scale of Second Life-to-Real Life bitchin' ideas, this one ranks pretty high. I mean, c'mon, aren't you so curious that you'll go check out their web site, learn more and maybe even find them in world and give their system a whirl?

Damned right you are.

Tada! Now they have you as anew user... a new user they never would have had without this unique mashup. It's genius.
Weblin Launches Avatar Web Portal in Virtual World - MarketWatch: "Teleporting a Second Life avatar to any Web site is accomplished in just one step -- step into the photo booth in the weblin house within Second Life, get your picture taken and export your current Second Life avatar as a weblin.

Just like weblins, residents defined by their unique Second Life avatars will now be able to seamlessly mesh a universal avatar identity while surfing the web outside of Second Life."

via Market Watch

PostHeaderIcon Buy from Real Life Tangs in Second Life Tangs

I certainly wish them luck and even hope they succeed.

We've all heard the stories of failed real life businesses that make a go in Second Life and simply haven't the faintest idea what they are doing, thinking if they "built it, they will come'.

Our favorite bastard step-child American Apparel seems to be the poster-bitch for all things relating to real life business "failures" in Second Life. But they are turning into a tired, dusty cliche, so I won't mention them here.

There are indeed success stories of real life business in second life. You just rarely ever hear about them because it's not sensational or 'failure' news. It is human nature to be attracted to other people's pain, which is why the so-called 'main stream media' sensationalizes everything and spins all they say into negatives.

Well, it's been awhile since the bastard step-child poster bitch has been in Second Life making a go at a real life business making it's presence in a virtual world, a lot has been learnt since then. Hopefully all that has been learnt will be applied here.

Hell, I'll shop the place:
Tangs set up 3D replica: "ONE of Singapore's oldest retailers, Tangs, is setting up a 3D replica of its green-tiled roof and red pillared Orchard Road landmark selling clothes to denizens of online world Second Life - for real money.

The 76-year-old retailer announced that it was setting up a virtual mall, the first such store from any Asian retailer in Second Life, at its Christmas media party earlier on Wednesday evening."

But what about taxes and tariffs and shipping fees and all that other unpleasant stuff?
via Straights Times

PostHeaderIcon Universal Second Life

Naoki lookin' hot!Oh bah-rah-ther.

Has Hollywood been totally sucking eggs with most of their releases in the last 20 years or so? I think so. If it's not some seriously lame-assed sequel, it a rotten egg is seems.

I think there is a pandemic of writer's block going around or something. It's so bad they often have to rely on headlines and a lot ond seed material. I suppose it was only a matter of time before they looked to Second Life for their garbage.

But wait, they aren't even looking to Second Life itself, but rather a poorly-written article by Alexandra Alter of the Wall Street Journal (roll eyes now.)

According to Variety, a film industry rag:
Universal, Verbinski plan to role-play: "Universal and 'Pirates of the Caribbean' helmer Gore Verbinski have acquired a 2007 Wall Street Journal article they will use as the basis for a film about the online fantasy role-playing world and its detrimental impact on the real lives of players.

Verbinski will develop the film as a directing vehicle; Steven Knight ('Eastern Promises') will pen the script."

Sorry, didn't mean to yawn so rudely.

A quickie perspective is given by Brian Crecente of Kotaku:
"Gore "Pirates of the Caribbean" Verbinski has purchased the rights to a 2007 Wall Street Journal article by Alexandra Alter about a sordid Second Life love affair between a married man and his in-game wife. Yeah, I know, I've heard that one about a thousand times before too. This means he's working on a BioShock and a Second Life movie. My head is going to explode."

So my question is whether they intend to visit the Gorean, BDSM, Free Sex, Ageplay, Furry Yiffing, Vampsex Dungeons and all the other "most popular' destinations within Second Life.

Oh! And will the Second Life players get any royalties out of it? Talk about the never-ending '15-minutes of fame'.

No thanks.
via Variety
Original article the story will be based on.

PostHeaderIcon Your Home Hacked

Stolen PantiesA year late, Sony finally opened up a public beta pf the PS3 "Home" virtual world that everyone tries so, so hard to compare to Second Life (fail) and are enamored with.

Well news has come out that already the virtual world of Home has been hacked to the point were users can redirect URLs to show their own videos on in-world screens and be able to change pictures and text on other items.

Another hack where where they can basically grab hold of your profile or even a full copy of your avatar and practically anything else that is you.

But the best one is this:
PlayStation Home hacked - Telegraph: "But the most worrying vulnerability found in the Home software is the security loophole that allows tech-savvy users to upload any file to the Home server, or delete any file from the Home server. It raises the spectre of malicious hackers spreading viruses and malware across the PlayStation Home platform, or even launching sustained attacks on the virtual world's servers to force it offline."

yes, Second Life has all it's own issues, like the alleged copybot, I.P. thieves and other things. But I don't think any Second Life resident has to fear getting a trojan or virus through in-world sims by walking through the wrong virtual door or something.

PostHeaderIcon Second Life Mod Squad

Snapshot_001.bmpOkay, so there are a lot of real life companies that are in the services business. many in the resale and whole sale business and many that are strictly business to business, a.k.a. B2B.

Starting a real life company isn't easy. it takes a lot of hard work, planning and capital just to get it off the ground.

In Second Life, however, it takes practically nothing at all except a little time and know-how. That's 'know-how' as in the platform and how to use it to create your product. In the end, other than time itself, there is zero capital involved, other than what you might invest in tools and scripts and so on.

However, that doesn't mean you have know-how in a business sense.

There are, however, many real life businesses in the real world that outsource all the time. This is where B@B comes-in. If you need particular materials to create the products you sell, you go to a whole sale supplier and purchase them for resale. Or, the raw materials to manufacture what you create to sell on whole slave or even retail.

I have always argued that in Second Life, the best 'businesses' or the resellers, or 'storefront sellers' because once the work is accomplished, the residual sales are where the money is. That is to say, work once and keep getting paid over and over again. And, since there is no cost to reproduce your product like in the real world, all on-going sales are residual sales off of old work. You just sit back and allow the money to come in.

Yes, I am over-simplifying here, but only to make a point.

Then there are the 'services' businesses. This is where you have to work hard continuously to keep earning any money. A good example are Second Life photographers. many do stunning work. But, once a contract is completed and they are paid, that's the end of it. They must find a new contract and then repeat the work, albeit differently in each case.

The work never stops.

There are services businesses in the real world, too. restaurants, photographer and even staffing agencies. Staffing agencies are B2B businesses because they primary focus is to help other businesses cut costs by outsourcing labor.

They hire these staffing companies to provide short-term staff to help out with whatever needs are present at the time. Then, they simply end the 'lease' until the next time it is needed. The benefit for the worker is that even though the individual jobs are temporary, employment is not.

Many real life companies are toying with virtual worlds, including Second Life. No, I'm not going to go into all the usual rehashing of who failed and why and who's successful and why. but, suffice it to say they need to understand the target audience within these virtual worlds because static advertising, (think of what you might see in a magazine,) simply does not work here. Especially in a place like second life.

The pretense really needs to be interactive. They can't slap up a prefab and drop some freebie logo t-shirts and the like. The first assumption in this is the old "build it and they will come" routine.

First, it is pretty conceited to assume your brand is of any interest in a virtual world at all. In fact, it is perhaps downright condescending. and insult. And though a few people might pick-up your nifty logo virtual t-shirt, it might get worn once for all of 30-seconds.

No businesses, you need to make it interactive. Sure, you could have a bunch of automated scriptie-toys, but that isn't enough. You need to have staff available to answer questions. To push people sitting on the fence regarding your real world product over the edge and make that sale.

You don't even have to sell the product through the virtual world. But to have a virtual showroom where people can ask real people for assistance or answers to questions is where it's all at.

Enter the Metaverse Mod Squad.

A real life B2B staffing company who fills that void:
From their "About" page: "No longer can virtual worlds be built without a significant investment in community management.  Lonely ghost towns that dot the virtual landscape demonstrate the need for having staff avatars on site to greet visitors, engage users, host and deliver interactive events, and serve as brand ambassadors.

We work with brands to select, train, manage, and compensate the real people behind those avatars."

It's a great idea along the lines of Rivers Run Red, Electric Sheep, Millions of Us and other 'metaverse-specific' companies. This one is a good idea. Although, they may be a bit ahead of their time and the power-curve.

I wish them luck. It's a great idea, if only they can sell their services along with selling the Metaverse along with selling any kind of presence there for real companies to begin with.


PostHeaderIcon Eating Google's Lunch

Sim-HoppingOver at Tidalblog is posed the question: "Did Second Life and OpenSim just eat Google's lunch?"

The short answer: "Umm, no."

At least, not on the face of it. Google's "Lively" was an experiment. It was created as an extracurricular activity by one of Google's developers and was really pretty simple in structure and overall... whatever.

It was cutting edge, awesome wow-factor technology ten years ago. On top of that, the way it works has to do with utilizing Google resources - server space, bandwidth, all that stuff.

From a user's perspective, a plug-in was required to use it in a web browser. It did not work with Macintosh or Linux or anything else besides Microsoft Windows, which (very slowly) is actually beginning to lose ground, much like the great Roman empire (and will take just as long to fall, if you ask me: somewhere around 800 years.)

The problem with lively is that it is room-based. You cannot jump from room to room unless those rooms were "hosted" by the same web site. However, the vast majority of web sites are empty of users most of the time. So entering a web site's room was usually a 10-second tour of a ghost town.

There was no central gathering place for its users and there was no way to 'jump' from one main location to another the way you can in second Life and most other virtual worlds.

So, in short, why put in all these resources if no one is going to use it? Google needs to continue focusing on its core business: internet search and cataloguing, etc.
TidalBlog:: "There is a widely held belief that Google and Microsoft could easily turn their geospatial products into mass market virtual worlds containing avatars. While virtual world products such as Twinity have indeed focused on replicating real-life locations, neither of the major players has, as far as I know, stated this as a near-term goal.

Moreover, I am reminded of Cory Ondrejka's observation that the now-defunct Google Lively was room-based to facilitate balancing resource requirements, something that may well prove challenging on the scale of Google Earth. This seems to be borne out in a recent interview with Popcha!, one of the Lively third-party developers, who suggest it was a combination of economic climate, technical scaling issues and uncertain business model that ultimately did for Lively."

Go over and read the article. it's a good read and an interesting subject.


PostHeaderIcon PP #5: Evil Second Life Strobe Textures

Wow.I've been thinking about my favorite pet-peeves of Second Life for a while now. No, I don't mean all the Linden Lab SNAFUs or the Second Life Viewer bugs or the general wonky nature of the Second Life Grid.

I'm referring to those things in-world, usually the cause of which are residents themselves. So I am going to work my way through my top-ten pet-peeves list. But rather than just plop a bullet lists here, I'm hoping to elaborate on each, so you know why it's a pet-peeve. And that if any apply to you directly, you'll understand why it's a pet-peeve and so irritating not only to me, but likely many, many others who come into your presence.

Number three my list are "Strobing Textures" A.K.A. "Sloppy-assed Builds".

One of the most irritating things to me in Second Life are the 'strobing' textures on intersecting prims. The classic example of this might be a wall where one section overlaps another section and the textures in the overlapping area flicker wildly, often when you are not even moving and the picture on your screen is static.

The is simply caused by the textures being at the exact same focal plane in the digitally reproduce three-dimenstional envirenment and the software (and your computer, by extension) isn't sure which texture it should be showing you.

Acropolis GardensSince it is a digitally-created three dimensional environment, think of it in three dimensions: width, height, depth. We all know 'depth' it the placement of objects further away from you as they run-off into the distance.

The software viewer, and your computer computes where these objects would be placed if it were the real world and what it should look like based on our position, looking in that direction.

So, each object has a 'rank'. This is real simplification, but helps me explain. The object that is (theoretically) closest to you might be number one. The next farthest object, even if by a virtual nanometer, is number two. The next is number three and so on.

The is all based on what is called the focal plane.

Imagine a camera as it sees the world through the lens. Notice how either everything is in focus? This is called an infinity focal plane. What you see in the picture drawn by Second Life is in this method of "focus."

AfricaHowever, with higher-end cameras, you must focus on your subject. As you turn the focus dial, the sharpest, in-focus portion of the image slides forward and backward based on your turning the dial. The 'slice' of the picture is a perpendicular, vertical plane called the 'focal plane'.

Even though the Second Life viewer presents what you see as an end result as an infinity plane (everything is in focus) - in order to create the proper perspective of these digital three-dimentional objects, it has to use a "focal-plane" method of placing them on the digital landscape.

So count up from the nearest object to the furthest away from you. The problem is if two objects collide - that is overlap each other, the digital 'focal-plane' cannot decide with object is closer in order to give it a higher rank (lower number). So the software fights with itself.

This causes texture strobing.

It's irritating.

it happens, sure. But the pet peeve is when it is so obvious, so sloppily done that the person creating the build cannot possibly miss it, and yet they leave it anyway. The answer is so drop-dead simple that anyone who's spent ten-minute learning to create and link prims knows how to stretch one or both of these so they do not overlap.

Holy shinola, Batman!

Talk about careless, lazy people in Second Life. And I really do mean that. These people are really lazy and careless as in 'screw you, I really don't care and I'm so effing lzy I spk w/ initials and u r a jerk and my frst name is lc inits."

The initspeak and lc names are up-and-coming PP's, u k w/dat?

Concierge Party!  Woot!Besides stretching your prims to they buttress up against each other, there is another solution. I overlap prims often if it makes my building routine more efficient. The simple answer is this: if I have a 10x10x10 (width x height x depth) block half-buried into an identical block and i am getting the oh-so-annoyingly-obvious texture-strobing...

I simply edit one of the blocks and in the size set of numbers, change the appropriate (if not all) settings from 10 meters to 9.98 meters.

Tah-dah! Instant fix. Strobing textures strobe no more and the "seam" is so negligible the only people who will ever see it are the ones to built it: specifically me and only me.

So, all you really lazy-assed, sloppy builders out there: first impressions are everything. if you want me to be at your place (or buy your prefab or other product) - as soon as I see strobing textures: okay, I admit. i just cannot poof out of there fast enough. really.

The point being if your are too lazy or simply uneducated enough, or simply too lazy to find the answer to the fix in the quality of your presentation... what does that say about the quality of everything else about you?

Certainly there are those learning. I mean, if I come to a place that strobes all over and I see it's only a week old, hey, congratulations on your first build. Really! Congratulations! Good for you!

However, if it's a dive that has been around for a while, you know, a dump?

Need I say more?

Dipshit, lazy-ass builders.

[Note: Images displayed are not examples of sloppy builds, but the opposite. These are excellent and interesting builds by which such benchmarks are made. —Ari]

PostHeaderIcon PP #4: Evil Second Life Camping Bots

Concierge Party!  Woot!I've been thinking about my favorite pet-peeves of Second Life for a while now. No, I don't mean all the Linden Lab SNAFUs or the Second Life Viewer bugs or the general wonky nature of the Second Life Grid.

I'm referring to those things in-world, usually the cause of which are residents themselves. So I am going to work my way through my top-ten pet-peeves list. But rather than just plop a bullet lists here, I'm hoping to elaborate on each, so you know why it's a pet-peeve. And that if any apply to you directly, you'll understand why it's a pet-peeve and so irritating not only to me, but likely many, many others who come into your presence.

Number four my list are "camping bots".

I've written about bots quite often. And I love it when Garth Goode over at SLWTF finds them - always a highly entertaining read. What we need in Second Life are two things: a crusader who bounces throughout the grid the way Garth does, looking for campinjg bots, and a way to annihilate them and wipe the scourge from the face of the entire grid.

Okay, allow me to clarify that when I say "camping bots" - I am referring to both: the dumb bot that is placed on sims and parcels, usually under the ground or way up high in some enclosed box and the dumb, mindless camping-for-L$ kind, which are usually just alts, or worse: they are dumb bots that the owner places on campers to make it look like they are at least real people - and giving the appearance that they are awarding camping money - when they really aren't.

So, why are camping bots such evil? Simple: they jack traffic up in a false way. That sucks, yes. But what makes them really evil is when they appear on the map as a crowd and all you are wanting to do is a little sim-hopping. Not shopping, not really out for anything except maybe to meet new people all over the grid and explore.

It's one thing when a shopping mall or some retail place uses camping bots or camper chairs (or blankets or other themed prims) - but when a night club, or amusement park or romantic-garden uses them... a place that is billed as a destination and about meeting other people kind of location which is using them is outright lying to you - falsifying their population - all in the name of bumping themselves a few notches higher on the search listing in the places tab.

makes me wish Linden Lab would bring back the old voting option - and a way to vote negatively as well as positively.

I often click the name column to sort by name - so the traffic numbers column doesn't mean anything to me. If I am sim-hopping, I usually click the "view map" button for one of two results depending on my mood: hopefully empty or hopefully populated.

Often I can tell when the dozens of dots are campers or bots. Primarily based on the location of where they appear on the map based on the landing point. Especially if it is only one or two dots evenly spread around throughout the area in some bizarre, even pattern or shape. Those are L$ campers. But if there is a stack ridiculously tall - that's usually a botfarm. Even if it is a club and there are 40 people there, the stack would be spread out a bit - several tall stacks, not one or two super-tall stacks.

Concierge Party!  Woot!

(Note how spread-out this gathering of live people is. First clue these are not bots.)

If I'm not sure, I'll TP anyway. I don't even wait for the rezzing to finish, often before it even really starts I'll hit the mini map and look for those dots.

Clue #1: if you land in a sky platform and the dots are above you: botfarm. if you land on the ground and the dots are below you - botfarm.

If you land in some "natural" environment like a beach or garden and there are dozens of dots spread out and showing strange looking clumps: L$ campers.

Yawn. Sim-hopping just isn't any fun any more.

I have a single bot who manages my merchant groups. Beyond that, bots are not used or allowed on my sim. I might not have the best traffic numbers on my sims, but at least they are genuine numbers.

Forget the land-baron bots. Forget the group manager bots. Forget the L$-camper mindless bots (the ones with real humans) - the dumb-bots bunched together in a box in the sky or underground have ruined the whole purpose of the little green dots on the Second Life map, altogether.

Linden Lab: How about we just go ahead and turn that feature off so the map loads faster when we look at it. Because 3 or 4 of every green dot on the map sure seems to always turn-out being a dumb-bot or a really stupid L$ camper spending more real life money camping than they could ever hope to earn.

PostHeaderIcon Businesses Incognito In Second Life

This is the whole reason why I follow Tateru Nino so religiously:
Businesses not stampeding from Second Life - Massively: "Much of the sort of business usage that you've heard about through the media are self-promotional usages. Sites intended to boost the image of businesses such as Comcast (mistargeted) or Wired (no target) have largely fallen flat. There are more enterprises using Second Life. They're just not the uses that you normally hear about.

"The primary business usage of Second Life as it stands today is collaborative usage. These are businesses that aren't issuing press-releases, aren't claiming virtual-environment 'firsts' (falsely or otherwise). They're serious organizations using the virtual environment for their own benefit, on their own schedule and they're not making noise about them."

Sim-HoppingI concur completely. it's actually amazing how wrong so many so-called 'journalists' get it all the time. Not just about all things Second Life, but all things, period.

The only main-stream professional journalist I follow and take serious with regard to anything he reports on Second Life or Linden Research, a.k.a. Linden Lab is Mitch Wagner of Information Week.

As for the 'scoop' on Linden lab and all things under-the-hood, Tateru is the go-to-girl. no doubt about it.
via Massively: Second Life

PostHeaderIcon Second Life Epiphany: It's Not Dying

Emilie Reymond of Healthcare Republic has had an epiphany about Second Life and how it's used:
Virtual world gets a second life with nurse training: "The online 3D virtual world got bad press in recent weeks and many assumed we'd seen the end of Second Life. But the lights are still glowing and Second Life is far from gone.

"It seems that the platform is not just a means of escapism, a virtual world where 'normal people' can escape the daily grind of their real world and enjoy life in a virtual utopia, but is now used as an e-learning tool."

Extasia at SunsetNo, I'm not looking to insult or embarrass Emilie or anything like that. What's embarrassing is how so-called 'respected' news organizations are still reporting on the Second Life Tryst-to-Deivorce news as though it were scoop even today.

What I want to bring to attention is basically this: the so-called 'mainstream' media is influential. They know they are influential. The problem is that they no longer are unbiased and balanced in practically anything they report.

The United States election cycle is a clear example of that. Most journalists have a clear and now admitted agenda. They are partisan reporters actively trying to sway your opinion on things.

The clear example is basically demonstrated above where Emilie states "...many assumed we'd seen the end of..."

Well, anyone intimately familiar with Second Life knew far better, Ms. Reymond, but no worries, we don't blame you. And no, I wouldn't call you 'gullible' because you simply assumed what all those journalists who know nothing of fact about what they are writing are always throwing opinions and a assumptions out and spinning it as fact.

The other thing is that the idea of education in Second Life has been going on for a very long time. I've written about it countless times over the past year and I agree: it's wonderful use of commonly accessible technology (by way of Linden lab and Second Life for now).

So if it's an epiphany for you, congratulations and welcome to the virtual world. I don't mean that in any cynical fashion. I mean it with sincerity.

via Healthcare Republic

PostHeaderIcon Second Life & The Holocaust

Land of HopeAleister Kronos of Ambling in Second Life writes a rather interesting post about commercial and educational ventures in Second Life. I agree that most commercial and certainly virtually all educational ventures in Second Life are ho-hum yawners at best.

However, there are times when non-profit and other educational efforts that are definitely worth the visit, such as from Discovery Channel and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

There also is the Sistine Chapel and other historic places that are simply fun to wander about gawking at, such as the Chichen Itza pyramid in central Mexico.

There are many art galleries and museums. The best are the ones created officially, by the official real life officials.
Ambling in Second Life: US Holocaust Museum & Kristallnacht: "Sure, there are several newcomers to Second Life that I have visited - but I've not felt 'inspired' (yet) to write about them, including: Air France-KLM, virtual Birmingham and virtual Czech Republic. So why am I writing now?

"And what am I writing about? A week or so back, I got a message from Drew Stein of Involve, the company behind the rather fine 7Days' Magic Bakery sim, inviting me to view their latest work on behalf of the US Holocaust Museum. After a few attempts I finally met up with Drew and David Klevan, Education Manager for Technology and Distance Learning Initiatives at the Museum, for a tour. The site opens officially on Tuesday, 9th December."

[Emphasis is mine, and the picture above is just a random one from my flickr page. —Ari]

via Ambling in Second Life

PostHeaderIcon Business and Second Life | Your2ndPlace

Sim-HoppingNobody Fugazi have been in Second Life since about the same time I joined-up with my very first account (July, 2006) and I had learned of him (heard of him) as an influential resident since early-on. I respect him, even though I strongly disagree with a majority of his views. But we respectfully agree to disagree.

He wrote an article on his blog (Your Second Place) that I find interesting... but more in the 'I told you so' category. No, I never said that to Nobody Fugazi or any other specific person. But to the users of Second Life at large.

Nobody has said in his blog what I have been saying for two years:
Business and Second Life | Your2ndPlace: "Second Life loves no one. Linden Lab loves some people, you can see it on their site quite clearly who they love, but they don't love everyone. And either they don't care about inworld businesses such as Sarah's, or they honestly have no clue. Given that Sarah's been going to the Linden meetings and trying to affect the course of what is/was happening, it seems that Linden Lab doesn't seem too interested in virtual land businesses run by users."

Note to Nobody Fugazi: this is a 'duh' moment. Linden Lab is in business for Linden Lab. The only thing you can expect from Linden lab regarding 'customer service' is in reference to the service you receive: connection issues, account issues, access issues, and if you lease a region - region up-time issues.

Linden Lab promises everyone absolutely nothing. There is nothing in writing that says Linden Lab guarantees the value of the Linden Dollar because it's not real money. The very fact that there is an exchange is actually amazing, and there is no promise to pay you anything. There is no promise to exchange anything. There is not promises...period.

The 3D FingerThe only reason there is an exchange at all is because Linden Lab has created monopoly money that only has worth in the eyes of the monopoly players. They can turn off the exchange in the blink of an eye and there is nothing any of us can do about it.

The only thing Linden Lab promises anyone is that they can and (at their whim) will shutdown your account, confiscate all your monopoly money and 3-D prim description files (which are all really their property to begin with) and lock you out of the system for any or no reason whatsoever.

That is the only promise, read guarantee from Linden Lab. You and every one else agree to the Terms of Service when you signed-up. The problem is you and Sarah Nerd and all the in-world banks and stock exchanges and everyone else are all taking it too seriously.

No, it's not a "game" as the word is usually defined. But it really is a game and all of us are playing a game every-time we spend any money, funny-money or not.

So, you write about something you have been saying for two years. So have I. The difference is when I write about it, I am wagging my finger at all the others who whine about it.

/me looks to Nobody Fugazi and gently wags his finger.
via Your Second Place

PostHeaderIcon PP #3: Evil Second Life Entitlement Attitudes

I've been thinking about my favorite pet-peeves of Second Life for a while now. No, I don't mean all the Linden Lab SNAFUs or the Second Life Viewer bugs or the general wonky nature of the Second Life Grid.

I'm referring to those things in-world, usually the cause of which are residents themselves. So I am going to work my way through my top-ten pet-peeves list. But rather than just plop a bullet lists here, I'm hoping to elaborate on each, so you know why it's a pet-peeve. And that if any apply to you directly, you'll understand why it's a pet-peeve and so irritating not only to me, but likely many, many others who come into your presence.

Number three my list are "entitlement attitudes".

Even though Linden Lab opened up account registrations to the masses at large at no charge, calling them 'basic' accounts, even though the freebie craze has made a huge chunk of all items available for sale in-world complete junk or outright stolen, even though many of these "no payment info on file' people are contributing positively to the Second Life economy, there are still far too many idiots with entitlement attitudes.

Concierge Party!  Woot!The "world owes me" crowd are who Obama/Biden were catering to during the recent presidential elections and who the European Union, Canadian government, United Kingdom government... hell, most world governments all cater to.

It's been done before, folks. They called it socialism and the grand experiment was known as the CCCP (Roman: SSSR) - Russian for Union of Soviet Socialist Republic. (Soyuz Sovetskikh Sotsialisticheskikh Respublik.)

Okay - the point being that everyone seems to think they are owed anything, whether they've earned or not, whether it was promised or not. It is the 'me, me, me' attitude that is so prevalent in Second Life - even more than the real world.

One of my biggest gripes has always been to lash-back at people who whine with a shrill voice at Linden Lab every-time something goes awry with the grid and they proclaim how much money they've lost because it's their real life income.

Okay folks, this is really stupid. Who, in there right mind creates a business that is 100% relying on another business and they have absolutely no control, no say or any sway with that other business whatsoever?

These 'brilliant' people are so enamored with themselves that they even believe their own diatribe:
Second Life Herald:: "Some residents are speculating that by forming a virtual organization to raise funds for legal action against Linden Lab, they may be able to recover what they claim are significant monetary damages suffered due to the OpenSpace sim price increases recently announced by the Lab."

One word here, in the plural: baffoons.

I've written on this subject often, and as to the specific idea of relying on anything Second Life for your first life: be careful.

Concierge Party!  Woot!The first reason you are absolutely foolish to even think Linden Lab owes you anything whatsoever is that you think Linden Lab has promised you anything at all. They haven't.

Not only has Linden Lab not promised you anything - in writing or otherwise, but in the terms of service, (service you get for free, by the way,) Linden Lab specifically states that they not only don't owe you squat, but they can revoke anything and everything they allow you to have without cause or reason or explanation.

On a whim.

Now, take this entitlement attitude and spread it among the rest of the population in varying degrees. These people are my irritant. That is my pet-peeve.

To everyone in Second Life: don't look the gift horse in the mouth.

quote courtesy of Second Life Herald

PostHeaderIcon Rules of Second Life

Prad Prathivi over at Metaversally Speaking has popped up the Essential Second Life Rules. Okay, should be Second Life Code Law. Srsly. LOL

Here's a sample. This is a gottaseeit:

Rules of Second Life: "27. If at first you don’t succeed, destroy all evidence that you ever tried.

28. If you’re losing an argument, crash the sim.

29. There is no good time for the assets server to fail.

30. Never teleport anywhere which uses an RL picture in the landmark.

31. Ejecting people from your land will never get old.

32. Power corrupts. Absolute power is kinda neat. God tools make you all my bitch.

33. Don’t ask for money to review anything. Srsly.

34. Respect the Lindens. They have endless cans of whoop-ass with your name on it."

Sim-hopping from rhe map

via Metaversally Speaking..

PostHeaderIcon Rivers Rock Alt Accounts: Good Riddance?

SunsetSo, there are those who try to make real money within Linden Lab's Second Life. Fool. buffoon, Foolish, dullard, simpleton, clod...

I could go on. But I won't. Anyone who follows this blog at all already knows how I feel about these kind of people. They are risk-takers who probably shouldn't be. They see the rainbow and then chase it, trying to reach the alleged pot of gold at the end of it.

But instead, they find reality.

River Ely sez: "Today I closed several accounts. I did not abandon them, I transferred the Linden Dollars to my sub account and then selected each in turn for closure.

"The inventory is mostly no transfer, so nothing gets to be kept these days, and without another ‘Second Life’ to use them in, they are so much wasted funds. I have closed just nine accounts, some seven hundred US Dollars and a total of six quarterly closed accounts saving me on renewal fees.

"The dollar value lost today to me is about a thousand dollars in inventory losses."

Umm... are you whining? I certainly hope not. This is you acting on a stupid decision. All of us make stupid decisions all the time. The difference is the smart ones don't act on them in knee-jerk reaction.

To be fair - I am not directing the above comments to River specifically. She is just the example who represents thousands of others, if not more Second Life users.

Please understand, I really do feel for River's chagrin and wish her the best in future endeavors. Unfortunately, the land business in second Life right now is all but bust. I don't know if River and company were in the land business, but an in-world search for anything and everything makes it appear that way.

In gheneral terms, the more openspace sims that close, the more so-called 'big business' that close, the more accounts that are closed...the better. It's a good riddance for the rest of us who choose to stay, content and happy as long as we can at least get the game to pay for itself. Not to mention less 'business' competition. And no, it's not fewer shoppers because all those people were the same real life person making the purchasing decisions.

Now, directed to River: friend, you had not considered that spending so much money throughout multiple accounts might be throwing all that money away when eventually (as for anyone) you consolidate those accounts?

I have a few accounts. Two are group-management bots (one replaced the other because I liked the last name better.) That one also serves as my bank. And there are a couple for testing purposes. None of them have any inventory or Linden Dollars in their accounts. They are alts intended to be just that: alts. Anything they have in inventory is specifically transferrable. I check that before purchase.

Besides, the only reason to have alts you actually spend money on with fancy inventory and the like... is to create an entirely new persona, new friends, new relationships, new... or I should say alternate everything. How fair is that to everyone anyway?

Again, to be fair, in River's case, they don't appear to be 'secret alts', either - I am speaking generally here.

In the end, this post is again about how people actually invest a lot of real money and actually hope to make a return on it. I know, "Second Life" isn't a "game".

Well, in the strictest definition, that's true. But it is a game. In a likewise definition that "life is a game".

River, I genuinely wish for you the best and happy times ahead. Like all of us, now you know better and what to expect.

via Rivers Rock

PostHeaderIcon Huh, Who Knew?

Just a blurb here...

One of the fun things about giving... and I mean just giving - for the sake of giving, is the warm fuzzy you feel inside. You know that feeling. You feel it whenever you do something for someone, offer your time, your knowledge, gift a tangible gift, whatever.

In fact, I think it's one of the reasons so many people absolutely love the Christmas (yes, Christmas, not Holiday) season. And for all you who practice it: Happy Hanukkah as well.

Anyway, my rant on Christmas versus Holiday (proper grammar, folks, it's pronounced holy-day,) and "Winter Celebrations...or whatever) will come in another post.

CeN_s Two Cents
Right now, for those of you who follow CeNedra Rivera's blog (Cen's Two Cents) - you'll know by know I slapped together a Blogger template for her. I really didn't expect the reaction. It's really nice when someone is genuinely grateful for your efforts. And you can always tell when the appreciation is genuine.

But, I have to admit, part of the gesture on my part was selfish. I did it to get in my practice of working with XHTML, the web code used by Google Blogger. I am an accomplished photographer, graphic designer, all that - it's what I do in real life.

So anyway, I want to extend the same offer to the first five people who are interested. if you are a blogger, and use Google Blogger (a "" blog) - let me know. I'll obviously need contact details, so IM me in world and we can trade.

Now these aren't easy and it can take a bit of time to do. But if you're patient, and serious about it - let me know. I need the practice.

PostHeaderIcon Program Allows College to Break Linden Lab TOS

FailureOnly a couple days ago I posted (again) how frivolous it is to whine about minors in Second Life on the 'adult' grid. In fact, I've written about it often.

It is against the Terms of Service all users must agree to before your account is activated. In theory, the entire Second Life grid is supposed to be full of adults and only adults. That's why there is a "Teen Second Life" - a.k.a. the "Teen Grid" - which admittedly goes practically neglected by Linden Lab.

Certainly there are underagers sneaking into the Second Life grid and have been doing so since the introduction of "basic accounts" that don't require any kind of age verification during sign-up.

So now, one of the educational institutions in Second Life, that Linden Lab loves so much (by way of loving educational institutions using Second Life,) will be flat-out breaking the Linden Lab Terms of Service by allowing underagers into Second Life under the guise of education.
Program allows high school juniors to take college courses online: "High School students in Pitt County will soon be able to take classes at East Carolina University through the virtual world of Second Life.
ECU recently received the blessing of Gov. Mike Easley and UNC System President Erskine Bowles to pilot a program for an early college high school in the virtual world."

Most high school students won't turn 18 years-old until their senior year. Thus, the majority of Junior students are 16 to 17 years-old.

Certainly the college might maintain control of their presence while in 'class' - but what's to keep them from logging in when they get home and them bouncing all over the grid - specifically the BDSM, Gorean, Free Sex attractions?

And this time, we know then are underagers.

I guess the best way to protect them and fend-off any legal complaints against Linden Lab will be to drop the hammer on all that naughty stuff and tighten restrictions further.

Goodbye Neva Naughty and Bondage Ranch and all those beautiful Gorean Cities (you must admit, no matter how you feel about Gor in general, they do have stunning sim builds,) - it was all nice and sultry while it lasted.

courtesy of

Blackthorne™ ≠ inSL

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