Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Terraforming Wellsian

Caledon is one of my favourite haunts on the grid. His knibs has got a couple of properties there. The studios in Mayfair and The Salty Mermaid (the navy pub) at Kittiwickshire hub. Also, and cheers again Guv, I've rez points for the ETC in most of the older sims. Most of my grid-mates are here and the bulk of my social and role-playing goes on on the oceans and in the parlours of this truly amazing group of excellent people. Now brace for Martian War Machines...

When Guvnah Shang gave a shout out to group the other day I just couldn't resist nipping over to the new sim of Wellsian to watch him apply the RAW file. Always biblical, and I wasn't disappointed.

This is now sim 31 of this epic Victorian masterpiece. A year ago, when I was first poking my nose around and digging up Cavorite with Terry on the moors, it was only 7 or 8. Dez has been busy. We now have connecting ocean sim a navy can be proud of, a public transport system that could teach the Labour Government a thing or two, a heaving artistic community, and a vibrant social scene led by our very own landed gentry.

Naturally, at the RAW upload, there was a bit too much lag for Machinima, but I had to give it go at the last minute. Tsk, not even time to remove the HUD ornaments.

Keep it up Guvanah. It's never boring ;-)

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The Far Away

AM Radios "The Far Away" field has been receiving so much attention it's now hosted on a bit of the grid donated by one of his fans. AM has kindly decided he's going to sell 'The Far Away' in modular form in aid of charity! So far he's raised $130USD for Heifer International, helping people in 3rd World countries towards self reliance.

Vendors in aid of the charity are on the plot, with explanations of the work, including some bits not shown in the installation. This is a chance to get hold of a truly beautiful and unique piece of SL history. If you got the spare prims, do go and grab a bargain in the name of a damn good cause.


Sunday, September 23, 2007

SL Blogger Party

[14:28] Mygdala March: enjoying it as I?
[14:28] Madison Carnot: Peachy when I stand in one place :)
[14:28] Kris Constellation: Oh, this is zoe's voice.
[14:28] loki Popinjay: Better now :-)
[14:29] Tiana Meriman: i cant do a machinima in this lag XD
[14:29] JellyBean Madison loves the lag between her thighs... here, now. And bring a gun :-)

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Work of AM Radio

Please, AM, come make movies with me :-)


AM Radios "The Far Away" field has been receiving so much attention is now hosted on a bit of the grid kindly donated by a fan. AM Radio has kindly decided he's going to sell some of his works in aid of charity! So far he's raised $130USD for Heifer International, helping people in 3rd World countries towards self reliance. Vendors in aid of the charity are on plot, with explanations of the work, including some bits not shown in the installation. This is a chance to get hold of a truly beautiful and unique piece of SL history. If you got the spare prims, go consume in the name of a damn good cause.



Some nine months ago veteran MMOG designer Raph Koster announced his new game company, called Areae, but not what they were making. Now he can talk about it.

So, h
eard of Metaplace. No? Neither had I till the BBC Twittered it at me the other day. In short, "users of Metaplace, as it is known, can build 3D online worlds for PCs or even a mobile phone without any knowledge of complex computer languages."

Users make the virtual spaces from bog standard "building blocks" and the results, which could be used for gaming, socialising, e-commerce, yada yada, can be embedded in a webpage, facebook profile or blog.

"We are out to democratise virtual worlds and bring them to absolutely anybody" ... "You can come to the site, press a button and have a functioning virtual world that supports multiple users in about 30 seconds."

Metaplace is entirely web based and connections can be made between all of the different worlds.

"We modelled this on the web," said Mr Koster. "You can think about each world being a webpage and every object within in it is a link." Users can create the worlds using different methods. Folks with zero programming background can use the graphical interface and choose worlds from a number of templates, such as a shop or a puzzle game. They can also clone worlds developed by other Metaplace users.

More competent visitors to the site can build a world from scratch using the tool's own programming language known as 'metamarkup'. The language is "platform agnostic", according to Mr Koster, which means that it can be used to create worlds which can run on anything from a powerful PC to a mobile handset.

Koster believes the tool will be used to create a wide variety of different virtual worlds including chatrooms, games similar to WOW, or teaching environments. "Others may want to make a book club that is integrated with Amazon where people can get together and chat every Thursday night about a book but they can actually see the pictures of the books on the wall, click on them and buy them," said Koster. "The applications are pretty open."

When complete, each world is given its own page on the Metaplace website. "You can mail that to somebody, they click on it and they are logged in to your world." Visitors will also find a forum, user ratings, wiki and other "community tools" associated with each page. For example, users will be able to suggest an age rating for each page. As each world is based on standard web technology they can also be embedded in blogs, a facebook profile, myspace page or website. "It becomes just another piece of the web - another way to display content and information," he said.

Koster says he developed Metaplace partly as a reaction to some of the already established virtual worlds and believes the medium has "enormous potential" but because of the cost of building them developers have never pushed the boundaries. "There's a huge amount of conservatism about what virtual worlds can be because it takes such a huge investment," said Mr Koster. Developers, he said, cannot afford to get it wrong when they are juggling multi million pound budgets. He hopes that his free tool will start to solve this.

"We want to see 10,000 virtual worlds so that lots of wild and crazy stuff gets made because that is the only way it will advance as a medium."

The program is currently going through testing and the final version will be made available to the public in spring 2008. Get in on the alpha sign-up now.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Talk Like a Pirate Day

Next person to talk to me like a Somerset farmer gets keel hauled by The Admiralty.

It's not big, it's not clever, and you'll have someone's eye out.

Vader Feels Blue

Vader, in French Louisiana musical refrain...

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Manchester Yomp

Pig and I went into Manchester today to do a bit of urban trekking, camera in hand. Getting into the back streets and having a good poke about. Found the Richard Goodall Gallery and could have spent an absolute fortune.

Around mid day we came across Urbis, which was topical (and surprisingly good) and took a a step back to the halcyon days of the the Hacienda (which made me feel a bit old, but the music was good). Then had Dim Sum in the Yang Sing and decided to pop over to the Museum of Science and Industry to stare at steam engines.

Pleasant surprise (but not for Pig) was the Dr. Who Up-Close exhibition where you can get in amongst actual props, costumes and monsters from the series, including the stunning armature of the 4-metre long Empress of Racnoss from the Christmas Special. While not an impressive 'monster' in the series, the eight-foot tall Slitheen was an impressive body-suit and it was really nice to see the new K9. The light was a bit crap for photos, but we did our best. We then had a good mooch round the aero museum and the steam halls, plenty to see.

Paused at Yo-Sushi to pick up tea, than back to his. Feeling a bit rough this evening (might have a bit of food poisoning, which is odd when Pig has eaten everything I have today and he seems fine).

Got to give a bride away at an SL wedding tomorrow and it's the Harvest Festival Maritime Events (pop down, bring a boat, should be chaos) so gotta get on the road early.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Monday, September 10, 2007

Test Drive

Those of us who like to cruise the highways of SL can now go visit “Peugeot Island” [SLURL] where we can take the Peugeot 308 RC Z for a drive around its virtual racetrack.

This made me wonder, especially as a non-driver, if there was anything to this. What would I get from a virtual test drive that I wouldn't get from just reading an article in some glossy on the 308? I decided to go find

Okay, well, first of all I got an experience. This wasn't a passive train read and there were plenty of other curious folks their doing the same. There were foxy Peugeot staff hanging around to help me in the right direction and answer my questions. I got my free Peugeot Sport Stig outfit and hopped on the track. First thing I noticed was the instrumentation. There it all was in front of me and under my finger tips, if nothing else an indication of the genuine driving experience directly proportional to and AV that is my size and shape. Valuable in itself for someone my size, but nigglingly inaccurate.

So, off I set on their fantasy track, with my speedo HUD and all. Now, I can drive in SL. All those months of Grand Theft Auto have made me a bit of a demon in the virtual driving dept., but I was greatful of a track I couldn't fall off as I shot up the side of a stylised mountain, through water falls and caverns etc. This made me wonder how a newbie would take to this? I bet, personally, it would frustrate the shit out of them.

This was NOTHING like driving a car and pure novelty value. Maybe I was hoping for some classic racing lines duplicated in SL, like the Jebel Hafeet Mountain Road, the A87 between Invergarry and the Isle of Skye, even the Llanberis Pas
s. But no. Pity. This HAS been done for the right reason, novelty value. "Ooooh, look, we have a virtual thingy in whatsit space", which is worth doing in column inches alone. Lets say it cost them 8k? Priceless off grid marketing potential for just that.

Shame really. I got very little I couldn't have got in a magazine, though as an SL citizen I did feel catered for (which is something). I looked, but criminally didn't see any social scene to the sim. No music or racing nights, no exclusive owners group to join in-world with virtual drivers present at midnight races etc., no computer game tie-ins or rallying crossovers, shame. Not even a car for sale in world (or I didn't see one anyway). Considering it was dotted with smartly dressed dolly birds waiting to linguisise at me, this seemed a double shame. I began to wonder if there was a Harley Davidson sim out there which had bonfires and hog roasts and actually sold a life style (which, in SL, is probably more appropriate).

Worth checking out is the 3-D model of the 'Flux'. First seen at this year’s Geneva auto show, the very snazzy Flux is the winner of the fourth Peugeot Design Contest.

It’s not the first time a car company has visited our flat little virtual world. Nissan, Pontiac and Scion, Toyota’s youth-focused brand, all have set up shop in Second Life. Each brand lets virtual customers buy and test their vehicles, as well as add a host of customizations. Nissan limits colours and options to what can be found in its real-world vehicle (with the exception of an antigravity button mounted on the dashboard for the blingtards out there). Scion and Pontiac offer much more flexibility, with monster-truck wheels and outlandish paint jobs on the options list. Go consume.

One day, ya never know, something like this might work really nicely. But not today.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

A Weeny bit Pretencious

Am I jealous? Yeah, a bit.

I saw this back in April and didn't think anything of it other than the usual 'student bollocks'. Some follks raved. It chilled me to the bone. Just goes to show what I know :-)

Okay, nicely produced, but one would expect no less from the likes of a photographer, filmmaker, and rounded multimedia person like Mr.
Doug Gayeton. Give me an AB comedy short, not quite so firmly up it's own Gary Glitter, any day.

Still, HBO like it. Apparently, they have snapped up the North American TV rights and are funding the marketing drive towards an Oscar in the Animated Short Subject category.

I mean, good luck to him, machinima needs a voice, it's not entirely surprising that the wordy art house comes floating to the surface. Again.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Gap Year

From the BBC:

David Tennant's appearance in the fifth series of Doctor Who looks uncertain after it was revealed there will be no new series in 2009.

The fourth series, starring Tennant, is due to hit TV screens next year, but the fifth will not be seen until 2010.

Instead, Tennant, will star in three Doctor Who specials, written by Russell T Davies, on BBC One in 2009.

A spokeswoman for Doctor Who said she was unable to comment whether Tennant would return for the 2010 series.

Thank god, yes, piss off and get it right for a change.

It looks like only the slimmest of chances that this could be a cancellation now, so sweet. Tenant is knackered and needs to go do some thesping elsewhere. Stretch his acting muscles with Jean Luc in Hamlet. We can't forget the influence that ratboy has in the UK TV scene. That said, if these 3 specials are the same kinda quality as The Runaway Bride, they can shove em where the sun don't shine.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

SL Bloggers Logo Contest

Our very own powncing twitterbot, the insatiable Miss Connelly, sent me a link to her general blog which has stirred my cutting and pasting arm into apathetic motion (hmmmm, stylish, small, simple)...

Nikk, I'm searching for a logo for the Second Life Bloggers Group. Dinee and I will award 5000 Linden Dollars to the designer of the best Logo. Winners will be decided by our group members.

Logo designs should be in a few formats: 512 x 512 texture for use on the group tab and on inworld signs/objects. Vertical and Horizontal Banners and Badges in jpg and gif format to be used on our blogs. Send all submissions to Zoe Connolly in the following manner...

1 ) Send a 512 x 512 Texture to her inventory. It would be helpful to add your logo texture to a flat notecard-giving object with a bio/description. Please make the object modifiable.

2 ) Create jpg's or gif's for use as banners and badges on our blogs. Use this banner webpage as a guide. I'm looking for a full banner, a square button, and a skyscaper images. Send any jpg's or gif's to her email address - zoeconnolly (AT) gmail (DOT) com

Group members will vote on the winner. Contest Entries will be displayed at the new Connolly Telegraph and Second Life Bloggers Headquarters in Antiquity Cove. Click here for the SLurl to Zoe's parcel in Antiquity Cove.

Entry Deadline is 12:00 PM SL time Sunday September 9th. Voting will start at 12:00 PM SL time Sunday September 16th, and remain open until 12:00 PM SL time Sunday September 23rd.

Competition welcome. Bring on ya best, or vote for me :-)