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28 February 2009

Molly Montale sent me THIS LINK to Sita Sings the Blues, an awesome animated film version of Indian epic Ramayana.

Ugh just fried after staying at Mamachinima from 12:30 until 8pm barring one hour spent at Spaceport for Kat's Combat Cards event. /me droops from lag burnout.

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/me staggers in shock: NOOOOOOO

BBC News:

'Meanwhile, the fastest-changing words are projected to die out and be replaced by other words much sooner.

For example, "dirty" is a rapidly changing word; currently there are 46 different ways of saying it in the Indo-European languages, all words that are unrelated to each other. As a result, it is likely to die out soon in English, along with "stick" and "guts".

Verbs also tend to change quite quickly, so "push", "turn", "wipe" and "stab" appear to be heading for the lexicographer's chopping block.

Again, the model cannot predict what words may change to; those linguistic changes are according to Professor Pagel "anybody's guess".'

27 February 2009


After Jack wondered about the SL video I brought up in the comments on the Land blog, I tried to find it. This is what I found on the Wayback Machine:
...but the links led to:
...however I decided to download anyway and got THIS.

That's the video I wantched 887678788 times, with the DUCK and the fireman and the schoolmarm (although the fireman gives flowers to a girl, it's the sheriff who gives flowers to the schoolmarm).

26 February 2009

Nova Albion
I spent some hours yesterday fine-tooth-combing Nova Albion with LisaHot Juran, landmarking damage. I did Grignano and Sistiana; Lisa did Miramare and Barcola. I teleported around to all her landmarked damages so I could put them in categories, and prioritise them all, then I compiled it all into a very organised notecard and gave it to Michael, who will, I hope, repair it all.

The poor city has had a lot of damage, in many cases due to the fact that some infrastructure prims were set "anyone can move." I first discovered that a year or more ago and sent a short list to Michael that he attended to. This list is much longer, yet the repairs would be fairly easy to affect, and in most cases not very time-consuming (not nearly as much as collecting the landmarks). A simple "copy selected" would fix at least half of it, I think. The railings on the canals are a bit fiddly I think, but perhaps not as much as I fear.

I included the missing walkway section at Luna because I adore Luna and had reported the damage many months ago to the LDPW to no avail. Luna is sort of a part of N.A.

I included the wonky bridge prim that has been crook FOREVER. Often a prim like that can be fixed by hollowing it, then closing the hollow, or if not that way, then by dragging to leave a copy. If it's just a matter of the border that is easy to deal with.

Flea Poster
After that I made the flea poster. Some more hours, but it looks nice.

Today Phate contacted me and asked if I could test AnyPose, which I tried to do very thoroughly and using myself and Lucy Tomato Tornado as models. I wrote down everything on the help notecard and gave it a good going-over. Using the HUD is much easier than using the page up/down, arrow method, and I made some poses, emailed myself the bvh files, then uploaded to SL with no difficulty. That took hours, too.

Everything takes hours but it's ok - at least it's getting done properly. I did something else, too, now what was it...

After that I ran into Musa David whom I had not seen in many moons, which was nice.

Carnage aboard the Turkish Delight


25 February 2009

I just got home. The rain, when I left. looked funny, as though it were trying to become sleet, which it managed briefly before transmogrifying into snow just as I pulled in the garage. A couple of inches are what the forcasters are calling for.


SL People Profiles
Can't add a profile pic, hah.

Another big issue in the jira - it's good that bugs are getting found that, when fixed, will result in an improvment in SL.

SL blogarama is up.



I forgot I made this - I was just wandering around one night and filmed a bit in this interesting sim.


24 February 2009

It suddenly occurred to me - I've been basking in the brilliance of one of the greatest of all men. Like a flower turning to the sun I was unaware of the source of the illumination and warmth - yet, now, the scales have fallen from my peepers and I leap into the air before falling to my knees in humble gratitude.

Psssst - was that overdoing it?

A nice airship is moored across the bay, so Yo and I went to look around. When Douglas Quinn croaked a hello I sprang to my feet with such alacrity that I was sent into limbo and, in attempting to escape limbo by H-ing home, wound up in a deeper level of limbo somewhere to the south (maybe even into Palomarian). I relogged and Young hauled me into the aether proper and into the airship. Douglas IMed that he hadn't meant to disturb us, but would attempt to render the airship operational for me, as it belonged to him. Luckily it wouldn't respond so I couldn't crash it :-D
"What do you want to do, Yo?" "I don't know. What do you want to do, Os?" "Hmmmm... not sure... ' "Mmmmm... me neither."

23 February 2009


Joh vs Khan - The Rematch



Postcard from Second Life.
Originally uploaded by Vivian Oblivion

Omega and Enjah - the furry versus miss fix-it, yesterday in Europa. Enj won the match.

Joh vs Khan


Why can't sims be spheres? I'd like to see supersim planets. They could be teleported to even if not joined by space.

Someone sent this poem to Doc... well, that is, it wasn't a poem when they sent it, but it was a near-poem and just needed a little rearranging...

a poem for business proposal

by Anonymous

i sell valued instruments
i give my instrument to you
as many as you want
for hunting

i can setup gamemachine
as many as you want
i can support my avatars
whatever they want

you can choose whatever you want
whatever you want
instead of these
this is my shop , look around my products

22 February 2009

Ugh - although I was suffering from something unknown yesterday, I thought it would be gone today and so didn't mention it. Alas, it seems not to be gone. Oh, well.

Ozymandias met an Italian man who is a rl pilot, and got a virtual plane ride.

21 February 2009

A Very Bad Bug

Jira report SVC-3867 points to a very bad bug that, when fixed may well result in lower lag across the board and perhaps a tremendous lag reduction in some sims. Although as yet no one has a repro, what's going on is that in some cases (at the moment random-seeming as in ghost prims) a scripted object is deleted but its scripts keep on running.

Island owners and managers have seen cases where an item was removed because its script was lagging the sim. After removal no change was observed and in fact the script could be viewed in island management tools. If a ghosted script is targeted by beacon, and then removed that way even though it isn't visible or meant to be there, it will finally be gone, I think, but that's a tricky line to follow on a busy island, and one that mainland owners with no management tools are not able to emulate.

20 February 2009

Weird dream: "You should be able to press F7 for 3D." And (might've been a separate dream, not sure, a long building with rounded corners, thick walls, lots of windows with thick glass, and banks of revolving doors - I think it was sectional and the doors were between sections It was warmly neutral, had no furnishing, but people were in it. I was trying to dodge a man who was (not threateningly but annoyingly) traipsing after me or stalking me. He had a camera and, I think, a yellow hat.

A thin building with rounded corners - a computer interface in building form.

*presses F7*

18 February 2009

Flummel entered her blog in a site that analyses it according to the Meyers-Briggs test, and because it looked like a fun 3.46 seconds I copied her. My results:

ISTP - The Mechanics
The independent and problem-solving type. They are especially attuned to the demands of the moment are masters of responding to challenges that arise spontaneously. They generally prefer to think things out for themselves and often avoid inter-personal conflicts.

The Mechanics enjoy working together with other independent and highly skilled people and often like seek fun and action both in their work and personal life. They enjoy adventure and risk such as in driving race cars or working as policemen and firefighters.

Flummel's explanation of the four letters:

Favorite world: Do you prefer to focus on the outer world or on your own inner world? This is called Extraversion (E) or Introversion (I).

Information: Do you prefer to focus on the basic information you take in or do you prefer to interpret and add meaning? This is called Sensing (S) or Intuition (N).

Decisions: When making decisions, do you prefer to first look at logic and consistency or first look at the people and special circumstances? This is called Thinking (T) or Feeling (F).

Structure: In dealing with the outside world, do you prefer to get things decided or do you prefer to stay open to new information and options? This is called Judging (J) or Perceiving (P).

Well, I had (after vastly complicated on-again off-again scheduling all morning with Kevin as Sean is unwell) my hair cut today, then had jin shin, then went groceterisationing briefly, then came home at five and Tiff came twenty minutes later; she just walked out the door. This has been a busy day for me although a few years ago I wouldn't've thought so. My days can seem exhaustingly full with half that expense of energy, unfortunately.

SJ was here on Monday, and we had a conversation about Philip Guston. When she was in D.C. installing that show she made time to see a Philip Guston exhibit, and had some thoughtful things to say about his work. From my viewpoint - a number of years ago (100?) I saw a collection of Guston's work at a museum in California, and although I had never been interested in his work in reproduction, the actual works had a power that I hadn't expected; I can see plainly in my mind's eye the stub of wall next to a doorway to the right of which hung a Guston drawing of a head facing left. About 26"x 20" maybe, and iconic, perplexing, memorable. The show SJ saw contained works from the three major stylistic periods of his life: representational, abstract, and the late drawings. She said the abstracts were not like anyone else's abstracts - somehow they had a pulsing energy. Faced with the drawings, she recognised the same pulsing energy - she thought, "I... think I'M BEGINNING TO GET IT."

The vibrating energy as I recall in that drawing came at least in part from the tension between the way we think something should be and the deliberate flouting of conventionality, the narrowness of the line, the amount of negative space - the central figure inflated with it. I dunno. All I know is that I didn't see that in reproductions although I might see it NOW after having seen originals.

Reproductions are impoverished versions, and although we think they substitute for the works, in truth they are mere placeholders. I remember vividly, as a teenager, standing before a drawing in a museum, and seeing the erasure marks - the human marks of process and changing thought. That's a minor thing, yet it underscores that the artist - who may be a "god" in the art firmament - is in truth a human being, in a way reminiscent of those Mary and Baby Jesus pictures where the boy's genitalia is meant to mark his bond with humanity. That sounds like a stretch, yet as a young artist it seemed so.


The new SL replacement for everything outside the program itself starts tomorrow, and yes, I'm anxious. I won't believe things will be saved until I see that it has been done. As I recall it was Robin who said the forum contained our history and would be saved, and as Robin is gone all bets are off. Although years of invaluable information is contained in the forums LL has not had a good track record in the valuing-the-forums department, which is evidenced by the missing or corrupted images of older posts.

I can't even express how much crucial information I have found in the forum over the years. As well as being a place to find an answer it's a place to ask a question - and to receive an answer or several, meet people, find friends, and be encouraged to proceed with Second Life. In all ways it promotes that idea of Philip's that if you find a friend in Second Life you are more likely to stay. While a knowledge base or other one-way tool is useful, they in no way substitute for the living, breathing, entity that is a forum.

The argument that the same question is asked billions of times is not convincing to me since for every "Oh my god, I deleted a particle script from a prim and the particles keep coming out!1!1" or "I can't select anything of anyone else's - is it a bug?" questions, there is someone who answers quickly and/or (as I've done) gone inworld to sort the problem out, giving aid to the new person in a personal way that has no substitute. A fairly common post is, "Help! Can someone go inworld and tell my partner my computer blew up?" or something of that order - which would not be helped by a knowledge base. A forum is our chance to help each other - something many of us want to do.

More complex questions may receive a number of responses looking at things from different perspectives and in separate cases. Some people have great expertise in, say, land. Others may have interface knowledge or be able to tell you where a certain skin or hair came from by looking at a picture. Sometimes the person asking the question can't ask it very well - for instance someone new may think they need a script to dance (recent forum question), and responders can set the person straight, point her in the direction of some good animation shops, and relate personal experiences.

Look at it this way: in Second Life we have some but not all of our senses. We lack, for instance, a sense of smell. The forum is like a sense that we have to use for SL but don't have in rl.

The forum has a history of being difficult, but not any more so than any other forum (especially company forum). Sometimes it is obnoxious for no reason; sometimes the posters are upset justifiably. I think that although the percentage of regular forum users is small, those people spread information and help (and probably less positive things of mixed validity) to many. It's not all good - nothing is. But a forum is expected from any company serving the public, so I hope what comes tomorrow is a step up that maintains archived old information and treats it with the respect it is due.

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17 February 2009

ZOMG Thai Spam

จัดโดย สถาับันการบริหารและจิตวิทยา (The Boss)

สอบถามรายละเอียดเพิ่มเติมได้ที่คุณ กรรณิกา (ติ๋ว) ที่ 0-2992-2122 ต่อ 11


ปล. กรณีสมัคร 2 ท่าน ในองค์กรเดียวกันรับส่วนลด 1,000 บาท


It's a small world - at least it feels cramped because it's full of Spam.

I don't think I've ever thought about the number of inventory folders, but I saw this tip today on the SL forums:

Originally Posted by Karl Baryl

look at your my inventory .. is your root folder longer than a full page of 255 items???

YOU WILL CRASH AND LAG . you will not be able to login randomly it will cause your cache to be damaged..

it will be a random crashing and random random issues .

keep all your root folders and files to less than 255 files and folders combined

what is the root::??
everything directly under my inventory Count All files and Folders...

+ my inventory
1 clothing
2 food
3 trash
4 etc
5 more stuff
6 even more
8 duh
...200 well your on your way to crashin at this point

and lastly you'v made subfolders try not to put too much in them too . especially the objects folder keep them to the level of around 500 to any subfolder.




I was intrigued by Phate Shepherd's post on the SL forum about a new product of his devising that would soon be released. Called "AnyPose," the product is in the form of a pose stand and a pose player that will soon be released with copy perms, and in the 3-5k l range. A nutshell description: stand on the pose stand and you may then select joints and move them; save to output the data to an emailed or instant messaged bvh.

Although it makes poses, the poses themselves can be used to make animations - I see them as key-framing crucial positions especially in relation to another person. Because I make some fighter animations for Combat Cards, I am interested in this aspect. I could set up two AnyPose stands, or set up an AnyPose stand and a player (which can hold a number of created poses), then move joints accordingly.

There is a kind of sublime aspect that I've not experienced before in being able to move directly in-game. As we know, the much anticipated Avatar Puppeteering of JJ Ventrella which would've added that capability to Second Life fell off the map and its inclusion into the program is uncertain at this point (oh, please, oh, please). The next best thing up to now has been Gearsawe Stonecutter's invention U-Pose, which uses a prim mannikin and allows for more precise movement than Phate's AnyPose, but which does not allow the user to move the avatar on the fly.

This is the very interesting part to me: I could, if I were taking a still photo or making video, put out a few stands and say to actor 1 - please lean against the wall -actor 2 - please stand on one hand - actor 3 - please tilt your head up and stand with one arm out. I could have an on-the-fly pose set-up that, yes, would be still - but often that's all that's needed. And there's a HUD which controls up to six AnyPose stands so you can change the poses for avatars on those stands if you wish. Multiple poses can be loaded into the copy/trans Player and given to others.

What I took away from the demonstration that Phate very kindly treated me to is that this product is another tool in our arsenal. While not good for everything, it covers territory hitherto unavailable for exploration. It's a bit hard to know now where the usefulness will be and to what degree, and it will vary from person to person, but I think Phate should be ready to be a little surprised by the uses found for AnyPose.

16 February 2009

"China is currently Japan's largest import provider, and the Japanese slowdown is creating tremendous pressure on Chinese factories. Just last week, the Chinese government announced that 20 million rural migrants had lost their jobs."
--Wall Street Journal


"A Royal Navy nuclear submarine and a French vessel have been damaged in a collision deep below the surface of the Atlantic Ocean.

HMS Vanguard and Le Triomphant, which were carrying nuclear missiles on routine patrols, are reported to have collided while submerged on 3 or 4 February. Between them they had about 250 sailors on board."


15 February 2009

Combat Cards Weekend

Mich vs Doc
Hippo Day! W00t! Mich gets in the swing of it.
Spaceport's Saturday event was fun.



There was a planecrash near Buffalo, New York.
The pilots discussed a build-up of ice on the wings before the plane went down, killing fifty.
Autopilot was on.

I started another Spore game to see what being a herbivore is like and just wander around looking at details (which is, truthfully, what I've always done in real life as it's just as alien). Anyway, I discovered that my creature can pick some things up and throw them - I hadn't noticed that when I played back in... uh, whenever that was. I tried to kill the huge monsters with 1000 health, but failed. I'd thought luring them to my nest then attacking would perhaps work as my creatures could heal while they attacked, but no, we were smashed a few times. A big notice popped up saying I could earn the Custer badge by leading thirty of my tribe to their deaths - hah.


SJ flew back from D.C. on Friday, and rang me this morning* to make me guess who she sat next to and formed a friendship with over the six-hour flight. She gave me 15 guesses but I used about four, I think, and my guesses were not exactly serious.
Me: Uh... I have no clue. Al Sharpton?
SJ: No.
Me: ...Ted Kaczynski?
SJ: He's in prison.
Me: You didn't hear that he escaped?
SJ: *clue*
Me: Uh... Carl Rove's brother?
SJ: Close! An iconic president's brother.
Me: uh... *can't think of any presidents* uh... Truman's brother?
SJ: No! Nixon! Nixon's brother!
Me: ZOMG. (First things that pop into my head are the opera Nixon in China, and the Cod Wars.)

* It wasn't early by any stretch of the imagination, but I can't sleep lately so I stay up all night then crash.

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Monty send an email to TSMGO! saying:
"Dear Family.

As you know, TSMGO is the Mafia of SL... Once you're family, YOU'RE ALWAYS FAMILY and there's no getting out... NO GETTING OUT ! Sure, maybe they'll let you lay low for awhile, or even send you to some distant unheard of island (like Los Vegas)... but you can never really just leave. Me, I'm just an accountant. I tried to get out once and they sent Kitty after me... OMG, I've never been so scared in all my life.

So youse guys, say you need some time off or need to get out of the SIM... but good Lord, don't say you want out!

In service to the family, Books Talbot."

13 February 2009

A Sign of the Times?

I was just perusing a New Yorker and turned to an article "Ms Kennedy Regrets" subtitled "She's unable to be in the senate today." That's a reference to the song Cole Porter wrote for Bricktop, "Miss Otis Regrets (She's unable to lunch today)" and so I was startled, as I hadn't heard anything about C.K. murdering a lover, but of course I hear everything last (partly because I don't care).

But one doesn't often come across a reference
that evokes Bricktop, so it's all good.

I completely underestimated how much snow we got the other day just based on what was on the deck railing - it was more like six inches and everything is still all white.


Today is 1234567890 Day! w00t!


Hippo votes have topped a thousand and Soft said, "Hahahaha, I love you guys. Alright, the hippos will have a home again. If anyone tries to tell me otherwise, I'll tell ya where and when to find 'em in-world."

12 February 2009


A resident made a patch for our hippo bug.

11 February 2009

Miro 2.0

"Today is very exciting for those of us at Miro, your favorite open-source, world-changing, delight-providing video player. Why? Because today we are launching Miro 2.0, totally redesigned and rebuilt."

In a nutshell, here's what's new:

  • A beautiful, all-new interface
  • Browse while you watch-- pop out any video to an external window (our number one requested feature)
  • Miro is now faster, more responsive, uses less memory
  • You can add streaming sites like Hulu to your sidebar
  • You can add download sites like or to your sidebar and download to Miro with a single click
  • Improved playlists
  • New compact, sortable list view
  • Better audio support

The Show Must Go On
I've decided to step down from my director's position due to one thing and another, but the show itself is going to continue with cooperative direction.

In 2006 I heard about a play challenge put on by Millions of Us. Entrants were to put on a 5 minute play in the brand-new New Globe Theatre, and out of all the challengers one would win X lindens. I persuaded Enjah to write a five minute play - I'd made an old quirky painting of mine into an Eileen McTeague poster, and Eileen Enjah had written a scene and performed live at the Photography Studio, so she expanded that one-woman snippet into a noir thriller with four characters. I was searching for actors, and originally started with Enj, Vlad Bjornson, and Selador Cellardoor. Vlad was unable to proceed and neither was Selador, but he recommended Lucifer Baphomet. As a ten foot tall red devil was OOC, Vlad was the model for the character, and Lucifer became "Sven" by looking at Vlad. We decided to change two characters into one (the couple whose houseguest is murdered became instead a single woman). One day Ida Keen turned up at the Photography Studio. I think I was fairly quick: "Hi, nice to meet you - I need you to be an actress in a play - ok?" - and was cast as the friend. She came up with the twist at the end of the play.

I built the sets to fit on the New Globe stage, but we rehearsed mostly in Bodega, where the sets hung in the air over some land I was renting from Salazar. This was before hardware lighting, sculpties, and so forth, so it really was the Olden Days. After doing our best to solve some knotty problems we competed to a packed house and won! Well, there were no other entries, and Reuben said that it had been too hard for anyone else and gave us double the prize money but asked us to perform again immediately. So we did, and I think a third time in a row, too, when the sim was opened to everyone, and the lag was through the roof. It was fun and the best part was that it was a completeable task. Before I go further let me state this: Performing in Second Life is really, really hard, and my performers are the bravest of souls.

I decided the only format that would work in SL was a kind of music hall or vaudeville-style with self-contained acts. That way a show could be assembled from whoever could be there at the time/date needed. Luc didn't join us but Vlad and Salazar did! Enjah, Ida, Vlad, and Salazar formed the hardworking and inspired core of the troupe. I went around trying to whip people into a frenzy and held an event every week at Salazar's Cowell Village Amphitheatre. We were considering options for sound when Candide Lemay stepped in and made me an audio box and streamed the mp3s from his server. I applied for, and received, a small grant from the Foundation for Rich Content.

The first act I wanted was a unicycling knitters drill team, and because Ida was the SL knit maven that came to pass. I learned how to build a unicycle that worked with Ida's knitting needles, Enj build a track and made exceptional costumes. Lucy joined the drill team and the show and became another core show member. I really cherish the time I've spent working with the many people who put time and effort into the shows, and who I would never've met at all had it not been for their interest in performing, including Caitlin, Maxie, Salamander, Cat, Monty, and others.

Then a lot of things went on and people came and went, and so on and so forth, and now I'm putting away my tyrant's whip. I'll make posters and things for the show and things will be different but just as good or better, I'm sure. I enjoyed performing a lot, and enjoyed very, very much inventing acts and seeing them come alive.

A Year-Old Story, But Who Is Counting.

Anyone who plays Entropia is familiar with the concept of gathering sweat - here's a real-life sweat-gatherer, though, courtesy of the Sydney Morning Herald, which incidentally has "lathered" instead of "slathered" (unless hippo dung has foaming properties I am unaware of).


10 February 2009

Oh, it's Flickr's fifth birthday today, no wonder I've been thinking about Game Neverending lately.

A pretty little very round brown-grey dove landed on the balcony railing in front of me a few minutes ago, and tried peering in before fluttering off. I saw no band, but it was mostly sitting on its feet, which might've been a bit feathered. Oh, I just realised it's - wait, two - three - four - are sitting in the madrona looking miserable. The coloration is very pretty. Well, at least I think so. It looks like a mourning dove, but I'm no expert and can't even say if those are around here. I've never seen one before, at any rate. Lots of ducks ( might be two kinds as one male type has white sidewalls and the other doesn't) are swimming on the lake so perhaps the snow caused migrating birds to pause along their route.

Update: Looked in a bird book and they are mourning doves, which live year-round here, except of course, in my particular situation I'm looking at a lake.

A flock of redwinged blackbirds just vaulted curiously into the madrona to inspect the doves, which weren't at all bothered.

"The faces of those killed began to emerge yesterday – photographs of children whose lives have now been snatched from them; couples who had no hope of outrunning the flames.

Nine-year-old Neeve Buchanan died huddled with her brother and two friends in her grandmother's home. Rob and Natasha Davey, their daughters Jorja, three, and six-month-old baby Alexis were found incinerated in their car. Minutes earlier, Mr Davey had sent a text message to his friend with a photograph of the fire in the distance, the Melbourne Age reported.

When his friend rang to check on them, he heard Mrs Davey screaming: "We're going! Fire." Then the phone went dead."

--from The Guardian

It's awful to think about, especially people who obeyed government instructions to stay in their houses, and who were then incinerated.

The good news is that on Monday, when I went to Olympia, the snow (nasty black heaps for the past many weeks) had finally melted! w00t!
The bad news is that it's been snowing all day and everything is white (I really doubt it will be around very long, though).

I accidentally stayed up all night again.


09 February 2009


Was thinking about this nice ancient video today - one of those inspired little movies that sticks in one's head.



new Sony PS3 game

Soft Linden posted this comment to the Hippos! jira report:

"If this gets 1,000 votes, I will submit a fix to maint-viewer that very day. ***"

He voted, as well, which was nice.

The Big Picture has a collection of photographs of the bushfires near Melbourne (where much of my family live).

This is boring and although I felt like writing it that doesn't mean I need anyone to read it.

I still miss Game Neverending a bit even though I never really got to play. That's how I got to Flickr - one day they said GNE was being scrapped, but HEY! Take a look at our new photo-y-type thing! I think that was in... what... 2004 maybe. GNE was so... wry and complex and funny... too bad it poofed.

I'm not really time-based, in part from early training. The separation wrought by time/space was something we, as a family, chose not to be part of. I did recently-ish relate how someone I hadn't seen for ten years rang me and said, "Where exactly is your house," and I said, "Are you visiting soon?" and she said, "We are on your road but we can't find the number." It never feels to me like there has been an interval; I can pick up where I left off with no trouble. I find however that people who are time-based (i.e. everyone else) attempt to corral me in their own reality, which is sad.

I realised lately, though, that once something is said it's as if a peg goes in a hole and I think that's it. SJ was over here in January (right now she's at the Corcoran in Washington D.C. installing a Maya Lin exhibit o.O) and said something about trolls. I said (thinking she meant garden gnomes), "I don't like trolls," and she said "I meant gnomes," and I said, "I don't like gnomes." I wondered why she thought I did since we had had a conversation in my kitchen one Christmas when she and Michael saw a gnome xmas card sent to me by the Monsters. I said, "They think I like gnomes but I don't," and SJ went all peculiar and said, "We thought you did TOO," and gave me a mug with a gnome on it. Long and boring story, but not pointless - the point is that I thought back to the date and it was Christmas 2004. I thought I'd straightened it all out, but the conversation that was so clear (possibly too clear) to me had taken place five whole years previously. It's not that it was important - it was just a peg in a hole.*

Watching people, I realise that everyone thinks everyone else is forgetful because each person has priorities. That's a curious thing. I remember once talking to Jack (of, "Hey Jack - do you like snakes?" fame.**) We were discussing a film. He'd say, "Remember that scene where X hits Y with a pipe wrench then a gigantic fireball erupts?" and I would say something like, "No - but remember when he said blah blah blah?" Jack laughed and said, "I remember the action and you remember the dialogue." It's like that in everything, I think.

I have all these thousands of reference points that go back years to conversations I remember very well, but what are they worth? Maybe I should just forget it all; forget everything.

As in every post lately there's a cut-off point where I get tired, so every post is half-baked.
Oh, well.

* And for the record, one may paint things to which one has no deep connection - I painted things I couldn't understand because I wanted to gain insight and/or I thought they were funny.
A huge, enormous, gigantic Black snake decided to coil itself all around the saddles in the stable, and we called gleefully up to Jack - who misheard it as, "Hey Jack, do you like steak?" and came thundering down the hill. We carefully moved the snake out the door and it slithered off unharmed.

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08 February 2009


Postcard from Second Life.
Originally uploaded by Vivian Oblivion

Epic Battle
Michalius and Johannason in an epic battle. Mich won in the end but Joh was not easy to kill.

07 February 2009


Postcard from Second Life.
Originally uploaded by Vivian Oblivion

Combat Cards at Kat's Spaceport

Kat Burger hosted a fun event at 6pm today - and will be repeating it on Saturdays in the future. Offering cash prizes, the first tournament for new and seasoned players drew a small crowd, but is off to a very good start. Kat has Combat Cards arenas and her own excellent tournament boards set up at Spaceport, as well as many other games, and she offers gamers many hours of fun and good company.


I noticed this a bit ago and said NOTHING - which I truly regret. It's more than a funny-silly Easter egg - it is our history and our continuity at stake here.

As everyone in Second Life knows (or should), hippopotamuses are the most important creature EVAH and have always been cherished and protected, enjoyed, and loved. Hippos give an SLer a warm and happy glow. Hippos go back to beta. Hippos have always been symbolic of the playful relationship between LL and us. If the playful relationship has evaporated we get joint custody of the hippos and want our control-alt-shift-H back.

06 February 2009


Postcard from Second Life.
Originally uploaded by Vivian Oblivion

Salamander wowing us at the Drunken Monkey.

05 February 2009





I spent a bit of time getting in (did finally with the Hippo), and had a couple of crashes and a "you can't log back in because we think you are still in there" delay, and some failed teleports, but it was an adventure. It's attractive. Physics are different - noticeable to me as I jump everywhere.Teleporter pictures: go to Mt St Helens, space, and other places like the Hypergrid Gateway (that eluded me for a time as I just crashed, but I made it eventually).There's a lighthearted science theme that includes alien avatars (in a group of 4 male and 4 female primless free avatars). This version of 2001: A Space Odyssey and a static spaceship beaming up someone-or-other are more little fun additions.I was reminded irresistably of Cornell's SciFair inside the education branch of ActiveWorlds (I taught in there for a few years) - and I'm sure you can see why looking at the picture above. For some reason it felt like a cross between SL and AW to me - yes, I know that's heresy or at least an insult, but I think it was the shape of things and the signs. Wait... I bet the person who made it cut his teeth on ActiveWorlds.

04 February 2009

ZOMB Band of Brothers (BOB) has been infiltrated by Goonswarm and was discombobulated, distressed, and disbanded ===:O (Massively says, anyway.)
I told you I like reading about EVE.

BOB was always interesting to read about.


Back at the dawn of time, I started investigating various things that had a healing, or at least distracting, element, starting with a device that influenced brainwaves, then moving on after a few years (when is was invented heh) to Journey to Wild Divine, which was interesting but also like being trapped in a Thomas Kinkade painting. *sound of a cat retching up a hairball*

I wanted to expand what I could do in the digital realm, and saw a tiny blurb in print somewhere about There, which was going into beta. I applied and twiddled my thumbs for a long time, then got a green light and went in. That was, oh, autumn 2003. Immediately I read on the There forum about Second Life, and went to their website. I took the "joo cannod yuse this product or service if joo haff dial-ub" at face value and never tried making an account because *sound of a cat hacking up a very large hairball* I had dial-up.

It's strange to look at the timeline as 2003 was the year both my parents died, my mother in the spring and my pater in the autumn. That summer was unbelievably awful in ways that went far beyond merely losing family members, and I don't want to think about it, but I came to understand that the grieving cycle lasts a year.* I spent 9 months of that time watching Losey's Don Giovanni 8645778565765 times, going to work, and, apparently, flitting about There on a hoverboard,* and then got broadband, hiked over to Second Life, and that was it. Although I poked my nose in various places like Project Entropia, Croquet, Multiverse, ATITD *retches*, and so on, SL was instantly my home and remains so today.

Coming from a less-than-free virtual world I appreciated the abilities Second Life gave to residents. It was obvious to me that the people at Linden Lab were idealistic, since they allowed residents to create in a more-or-less unfettered way despite the fact that what we came up with put serious pressure on the program itself. Three Lindens, Philip, Cory, and Robin, who shaped Second Life in an idealistic way to be a place rather than a mere business, were our visionary leaders and received exaggerated portions of adulation and ire. That was wonderful as I have no desire to live inside someone's business - but to live inside someone's dream is an opportunity to expand the boundaries of life itself.

Cory was fired. That was a real shock. When Philip stepped down as CEO it was another shock, but for me, seeing Robin's "Linden Lifer" tag was reassuring as I interpreted it as "I am here for the long haul." Unfortunately that wasn't the case as we are losing Robin, who was a kind and thoughtful person. It's a bit early to tell, but I hope that Second Life continues to be connected to human existence in a greater, general way, rather than becoming a closed and ordinary little business as every other virtual world is.

Second Life attracted me and held my attention with the ability to build and texture. I'm really only interested in making things; my entire life has been that way. I'm not much for looking at things - I get visually overloaded quickly, anyway. I'm not passive and I don't like arranging already-made things. I just like making things. When I entered Second Life I hit the ground running and made things day and night. Curtailing me now are physical and energy limitations.

Some people who make things want an audience, while others don't care. Those who like to make things are often not those who wish to be the audience for other people who like to make things. It's always seemed to me that there are far more people making things in SL than there are audiences to appreciate those things. And why is that?

The other day I was reading an old comment on an old article. The writer was explaining why many people don't like Second Life, and it came down to, more or less, that people who aren't interested in making things are amused by shopping and dancing and chatting for a bit, but then leave out of boredom as they want prepackaged "things to do" that involve the entirely faked notion of getting somewhere (levels). In other words, they want to feel they make something, not consume passively, but what they feel they are making is not something I have ever considered valid.

Clearly that's not helpful, and I am realising that it may be foreign to me but it is analagous. For whatever reason - they may be creative in another part of their lives or not be creative much at all - there is a need that is going unfulfilled. I've tended to lump people into "creates" and "consumes" categories, but the two are side-by-side continuums, it appears. It was so hard to see because when I'm standing in a forest and someone shows me a picture of a city I don't recognise that as being THEIR forest. So - now what?

*People kept dying on me every few months, though, so it was just a black time for ages and ages.
** I used to ask almost everyone I met if they'd been in SL. I'd watched that fireman-schoolmarm video umpteen times and I can remember saying to someone, "In Second Life you can BE A DUCK." I was highly impressed by that and so I should've been.

03 February 2009


Postcard from Second Life.
Originally uploaded by Vivian Oblivion

The discothecque on Bourbon Island.


This isn't the most picturesque thing on the Bourbon Island build by YadNi Monde, but it's the funniest - a prehistoric camping chair: "Ugh stonemen has earned 1 Linden for 3 million years."

02 February 2009


Molly sent me off digging through the National Film Board of Canada archives.


Real-world shopping through Second Life.


Postcard from Second Life.
Originally uploaded by Vivian Oblivion


Now Robin is leaving :(
I suppose larger companies need different strategies than small companies, and sometimes people who are interested in the starting up of a project are not so interested in the more mature project (not that I would call SL a mature project; it's still at its early stage), and changes are just things that happen in any living system, yet from down here in the mud it's a bit sad-making when someone closely connected to Second Life moves on (by choice or otherwise).


My Ze Frank Draw-By-Voice Skills Need Work
A lot of work.

01 February 2009

Uh-oh ========:O

/me is in trouble.

Update: perhaps not.





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