Feb 242015
 

Inside Elinor Caiman Sands Exhibit

Authors outside the virtual world at times pay attention to the virtual world. Terry Pratchett visited once for a talk in a promotion of his book Nation. Science Fiction author Kim Stanley Robinson used to pop into Second Life for a talk or two, dressed as a coyote. I’ve talked, more than once, with Nara Malone who has formed community links with authors in Second Life and beyond into OpenSim, especially with projects such as The HyperGrid Stories Project.

Over the weekend whilst roaming around the Science Fiction Convention 2015 in Second Life I stumbled across the works of another author, UK based SciFi & Fantasy author Elinor Caiman Sands.

Elinor has a small exhibit in the Risa sim at the conference, featuring promotion of her books and some Second Life based artwork. Elinor is a fan of alligators, I’m not sure how many of them really exist in swamps in the UK, although legend has it that the UK was indeed once a very swampy land. However she does have experience of the British Labour party, so she should be used to people showing their teeth and trying to snap.

At the exhibition four of Elinor’s e-books are promoted :

  • Europa Spring
  • Elinor’s Little Book of Funny Critters
  • The Martian Ascent
  • Mouse About the House

These are all short stories and were published as Kindle editions in 2014.

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Feb 212015
 

Opensim Scifi

OpenSim SciFi may seem like an odd fit at the Second Life Science Fiction Convention, indeed your first thought may well be “These aren’t the droids we’re looking for.” However you would be wrong because in a similar fashion to storytellers, SciFi spread across OpenSim and Second Life with the communities working together even if the technologies don’t. I caught up with Lani Global to chat about OpenSim SciFi.

First things first, I had to make sure that Lani wasn’t an evil sith Lord or lady, she frowned and then replied :

I doubt that the OpenSim universe has been conquered as an empire yet, but there are many trying!

However more importantly, how popular is SciFi in OpenSim, this was a question that received a warmer reply :

Sci Fi is probably one of the most popular themes in OpenSim.” Lani told me, she also told me that she has her own Hypergrid enabled OpenSim location “My main region called “Lani” has been enabled for HyperGrid since 2010. It gets about 15,000 unique visitors per year, and about 20% of them are via HyperGrid.

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Feb 212015
 

Magralthea

The 2015 Second Life Science Fiction Convention officially launched earlier this evening and there were no glitches. As a Dwarfin this was unchartered territory for me as I boldly went where no Dwarfin has gone before, to experience space, the final frontier.

New Vegas

The convention, which is part of the Second Life Relay For Life fundraising effort for The American Cancer Society spans six intergalactic sims, the links are the SLURL’s :

The event opened with an opening ceremony at Merciless Ming’s, which is based in Fhloston Paradise, but don’t worry if you missed it, there’s more entertainment planned for today.

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Feb 192015
 

Set your phasers to stun. Be prepared to go where no man has boldly gone before, well with the exception or the organisers, the builders, The Lindens and maybe some others. However besides them, the big news is that the 2015 Science Fiction Convention in Second Life opens tomorrow.

The event is part of the Relay For Life fundraising in Second Life effort on behalf of The American Cancer Society and as with many events there will be vendors, events and much more.

The event will be running February 20th Thru March 1st and features six sims :

Pern Sound
Source:
Pern – Planet, with dragons. And, Anne McCaffrey

Magrathea
Source:
Douglas Adams Magrathea will build planets specifically tailored for you. Want a planet made out of solid gold? What about one where everything’s made of jello? The pebbles on the beaches are all precious jewels?

Risa
Source:
The pleasure planet mentioned or featured in several episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation. In particular it was featured in the episode ʺCaptain’s Holidayʺ.

Fhloston Paradise
Source:
Fhloston Paradise was the name of the resort hotel/ship where Corbin Dallas/Leeloo went in 5th Element and got to see the Diva sing

New Vegas
Source:
Babylon 5, The Mars city New Vegas is very heavily implied to be such a place, right down to the name

Sihnon
Source:
In the TV series Firefly Sihnon is where Inara was taught the skills to become a Companion.

A good place to keep up to date with events is on the Sci-Fi Alliance website.

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Dec 312014
 

If you’re read my other two posts reviewing then there’s nothing new here in this one, it’s just a merging of the two posts to make it easier for future reference. This means it will be a long post, with pictures, videos and probably some errors.

January

January started with a look back to 2013 and the number of private region losses. The scores on the door from Tyche Shepherd displayed a slow down on the number of regions leaving the Second Life grid, something that would continue during 2014.

  • 2012 Net Private Region Losess – 2865 (12.0%)
  • 2013 Net Private Region Losses – 1719 (8.2%)

The virtual world of Kitely moved to a different pricing model which largely did away with the pay by the minute options as these had not been popular.

Blackened Mirror poster should be here

The Blackened Mirror Poster

Season 2 of The Blackened Mirror was taking a mid-season break but would return by the end of January. The show was recorded in Second Life.

Linden Lab were Raising The Roof : The HTTP Project. This project, which had started in 2012 was aimed at improving HTTP communications to improve the end user experience. Linden Lab would continue working on improvements during the year.

Second Life users were getting frustrated by tax and account information requests from Linden Lab. They would continue to be frustrated by these requests throughout the year despite Linden Lab improving their communications and information on these issues.

Second Life got a mention in the comedy show, 2 Broke Girls.

Then came the storm to warm up many a chilly January evening, Cloud Party announced that they would be closing their virtual doors on February 21st.

Pirates? Ahoy?

This was quickly followed by even more news to warm up January, Aston Villa fan and Linden Lab CEO, Rod Humble, was leaving Linden Lab. This created a Twitter storm.

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Dec 292014
 

In this post I will review 2014 from a largely virtual world perspective for the months January to June. This is part 1 of 2 as part 2 is still a work in progress but will hopefully appear tomorrow. I’ll combine both posts into another post for easier future reference once they are both completed. These posts will miss lots of big and interesting stories because the nature of the beast demands some brevity. These post may well look longer than they actually are at first glance because of images and pictures. The aim of posts such as these are to give a brief overview of the year, rather than an in depth review. An in depth review is too long for a blog post, it may make for an interesting book.

Anyway, on with the show, as they say.

January

January started with a look back to 2013 and the number of private region losses. The scores on the door from Tyche Shepherd displayed a slow down on the number of regions leaving the Second Life grid, something that would continue during 2014.

  • 2012 Net Private Region Losess – 2865 (12.0%)
  • 2013 Net Private Region Losses – 1719 (8.2%)

The virtual world of Kitely moved to a different pricing model which largely did away with the pay by the minute options as these had not been popular.

Blackened Mirror poster should be here

The Blackened Mirror Poster

Season 2 of The Blackened Mirror was taking a mid-season break but would return by the end of January. The show was recorded in Second Life.

Linden Lab were Raising The Roof : The HTTP Project. This project, which had started in 2012 was aimed at improving HTTP communications to improve the end user experience. Linden Lab would continue working on improvements during the year.

Second Life users were getting frustrated by tax and account information requests from Linden Lab. They would continue to be frustrated by these requests throughout the year despite Linden Lab improving their communications and information on these issues.

Second Life got a mention in the comedy show, 2 Broke Girls.

Then came the storm to warm up many a chilly January evening, Cloud Party announced that they would be closing their virtual doors on February 21st.

Pirates? Ahoy?

This was quickly followed by even more news to warm up January, Aston Villa fan and Linden Lab CEO, Rod Humble, was leaving Linden Lab. This created a Twitter storm.

Continue reading »

Dec 062014
 


2014 Christmas Expo & Winter Breedables Fair

The 2014 Second Life Christmas Expo & Winter Breedables Fair offers 12 days of shopping, hunts, live performances, and winter fun! This returning eight-sim event is in support of Relay For Life of Second Life. For more information, be sure to visit https://slchristmasexpo.wordpress.com/.

Visit in Second Life

On a lighter note, the Christmas Expo & Winter Breedables Fair for Relay for Life of Second Life has now been open for a couple of days and includes some fantastic builds and Christmas themes.

Expo

The regions contain Christmas Trees! They also contain a radio stream to make you want to let it snow, actually it has snowed there, a lot!

SL Xmas Expo

The expo is part of the Relay For Life fundraising effort and Linden Lab have happily joined in the spirit of good will to all men (and women) with a blog post in which they point out :

Returning for a 4th year – the expo kicks off today – December 4th- and runs through December 15th, 2014. Coordinated and sponsored by residents who wish to help fund a charitable organization with a festive event, this event intends to make the gift of giving memorable and fun.

This joyful happening helps raise funds for Relay for Life of Second Life – with 100% of registration fees, sponsorship feeds, kiosk donations, hunt, raffle, auction, and vendor donation items going to Relay for Life of Second Life – part of the American Cancer Society.

There will plenty of activities for you to participate in; from two tree lots filled with beautifully decorated trees from some of the best designers, auctions, live performances and DJs, to pictures with the man himself – Santa!

Exciting times indeed!

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Dec 032014
 


The Arcade Gacha Events

The Arcade Gacha Events presents the ultimate GACHA experience! Guaranteed to delight shoppers, The Arcade offers unique gacha prizes from 100 of the grid’s top designers!

Visit in Second Life

So you can’t get into The Arcade Gacha Events because the place is always full. Never fear, there’s plenty of other events to attend in Second Life and a great place to start looking is the Second Life Destination Guide where you should most definitely keep an eye on Editor’s Picks, Winter Attractions and Featured Events.

However, something else you should most definitely keep your eye out for is the SL Christmas Expo 2014, which opens its doors to the public tomorrow.

Xmas Expo Tree

This is an event that is dear to my heart because back in 2012, it’s the place where I discovered The Dwarfins!

Dwarfins

The expo also held discussion panels, where creators talked to in front of a live studio audience.

Cinders Vale Jaimy Hancroft Judy Chestnut

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Dec 022014
 

In a galaxy far far away …. you know the drill! Details are starting to emerge about the 2015 Sci-Fi convention in Second Life, which is an event that is also part of the Relay For Life fundraising efforts in Second Life. The event will take place between February 20th to March 1st. The theme will take the build into Space.. yes the final frontier :

you asked for it .. You’ve got it …. SPACE! The Final Frontier!

From 1000m to 1200m up, build your booth in…. SPACE!

This could be interesting and challenging. The general theme is that of a future Sci-Fi resort but the organisers do explain that the theme is a guideline. Registrations for the event are live and information can be found here. The basics are :

Basic Plot – Free
30 x 30 206 prims, 30 scripts

Slip Me Some Scripts – L$250
One time script bump on any parcel size of 5 extra scripts

Bronze Sponsor – L$4000
35 x 35 280 prims, 50 scripts
Basic Sponsor bonuses including logo on website plus 2 premium perks

Silver Sponsor – L$8000
35 x 35 280 prims, 60 scripts
Basic Sponsor bonuses including logo on website plus 4 premium perks

Gold Sponsor – L$12000
40 x 40 366 prims, 60 scripts
Basic Sponsor bonuses including logo on website plus 6 premium perks

Platinum Sponsor – L$16000
40 x 40 366 prims, 70 scripts
Basic Sponsor bonuses including logo on website plus all premium perks & 1 custom perk (within reason)

Titanium Sponsor – L$20000
40 x 40 366 prims, 80 scripts
All Sponsor bonuses including Convention Gala in your honor, logo on website plus all chosen premium perks & 2 pick your own perks (within reason)

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May 312014
 

SCI-FI

 

There are many fairs and events in Second Life during the course of the year, some more popular than others. Regular readers of this blog will know of my love of Fantasy Faire. However another big love of mine is Science Fiction, I don’t see enough of it in Second Life, this is more due to time restraints, which Science Fiction should be able to fix!

However, as part of the Relay For Life effort, there is a Science Fiction convention going on in Second Life, right now.

Colourful Planet

The event opened on May 30th and runs until June 8th, so there’s plenty of time to see the sims, of which there are six and they come in a variety of themes from your classic Sci-Fi look to more colourful offerings.

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