bFlat Unplugged

InterviewI had the opportunity to sit down and chat with bFlat Unplugged at Route 13, for a candid talk about his presence in SL.  A Blues/Jazz performer, whom I first saw perform in this YouTube video then live at “Sweet Whispers”, which is quickly becoming the most happening venue in SL.

I asked bFlat when he first knew he had THAT talent…where he could take his voice and make women weak in the knees.  (Ladies, just listen once and you will understand what I mean.)  He has that deep, earthy resonounce, that is sultry and whispery soft all at the same time, kind of voice that makes women melt just to listen to, add that to music and, well……yes you’ve got it..  He has a unique talent of bringing Soulful blues and that hint of New Orleans jazz together and just makes you want to get up off your chair and move your feet!
bFlat promo
bFlat actually Dj’d for a short time, in 1st life where he learned voice control techniques to help his voice “presence” be known.   Other than singing in the shower, along with the radio, or humming, he didn’t actually start to sing live until around 1995, where he was encouraged by a friend, singer / musician / songwriter, Phyllis Lanier, to get up on onstage at several of her shows to sing live, in Biloxi, MS.  THAT was the beginning of his singing career. In 1996, he had his 1st exposure to karaoke, and in 1998 after moving to Arizona, he started singing regularly in karaoke bars.

He got his first computer in the year 2000, and was introduced to virtual singing in 2003-2004 on MIRC…where some friends heard him and introduced him to PalTalk………where some friends heard him and introduced him to (lucky for us) SecondLife. Continue reading “bFlat Unplugged”

Stagnating but by no means dead

I was ready to move on from Facebook, with Inara Pey frowning at me on her blog, and Hamlet Au covering different angles over at New World notes, I was all Facebooked out, but, in a turn of events not related to privacy and more in line with some of the points Hamlet made in his New World Notes post, there’s a very interesting post over at Gamasutra about virtual worlds, social media and why the easiest pathway often wins.

What’s interesting about both the Gamastura post, and Hamlet’s post, is the numbers, the number of people using Facebook compared to Second Life is quite staggering, this is largely down to Facebook being both cheaper and easier to use than Second Life, but that only tells part of the story, World of Warcraft has something like thirteen million registered accounts, so people will engage with a client based system when the appeal is there.

Both posts point out that at one stage Second Life was considered best placed to capture the largest share of the market, with 3D worlds set to replace 2D webpages, and that will happen eventually, whether Second Life is that 3D platform is a different matter because they were ahead of their time with their ambitions and now have issues with trying to scale. However this will happen one day, and it will be easy to participate and will be the path of least resistance. There was a time when people poured scorn on Amazon for having a website and felt that angle had no legs. Continue reading “Stagnating but by no means dead”

Thank you Fermi

Arthur Fermi passed the following to me tonight and I told him I would post it for him here at our new forum:

Thank You Fermi!
Fermi Sandbox has been around over 4 years now; it has been an amazing experience from the moment it started. Fermi Sandbox started as a small parcel on the mainland sim of Hek, it was1536m, you could hear everyone chat if you stood in the middle. It was a shabby little lot in the shape of a T, it was wedged between big buildings, and it was perfect! It was a place where I would be able to build, I talked to Kai and she agreed that it was the right place. The land was purchased, it needed a name so I called it Fermi Sandbox, it was a place to build small things, furniture, jewelry, it was never going to be big, it was just my place to build and share with others. Time moved on, as it normally does, and it grew until one day a very kind man by the name of Steffen Menjou donated his sim to Fermi Sandbox. Toady Fermi Sandbox seems huge; it is on a private estate, has about 150 shops and about 50 volunteers and traffic that rival most clubs.

I thought long and hard about the decision to merge with Little Blue, and in the end it was best for me, and Fermi Sandbox. I do not know the complete history of Little Blue, but I do know that Fermi Sandbox was the inspiration. They have told me many times how honored they are that I even considered them. Over time Fermi Sandbox will change to be more like Little Blue, and Little Blue will become a bit more like Fermi. Fermi Sandbox will continue on under the control of Gillian Carthage, who is not only brilliant, but an exceptional person who loves Fermi Sandbox as much as I do. Fermi Sandbox is in the excellent hands of Gillian who will bring you in, feed you (not sure about that) and treat you as her own (sure about this). I am forever grateful that she agreed to take over Fermi Sandbox and continue its history. Continue reading “Thank you Fermi”

Facebook won’t eat your children

As much as I dislike Facebook, the company that is, it needs to be said that Facebook isn’t going to eat your children, run off with your wife or burn you to death whilst you’re questing in the Wetlands, as Deathwing did to me last night!

There’s nothing inherently wrong with the concept of Facebook, it’s the practices of the company that make it an area of debate and some of those practices are not comfortable viewing, this is why when Blizzard wanted everyone to use their real names on the forums, there was a backlash and complaints to privacy bodies, because Facebook goes beyond your circle of real life friends and neighbours and that’s where the issues start, hence why Facebook have been in talks with the German authorities regarding privacy settings on their friend finder feature, as reported by AFP here.

Over at New World Notes, Hamlet Au is talking of how Second Life was once considered the social networking platform of the future and how Facebook has passed it in spectacular fashion. There’s an interesting video there from 2006 featuring Robin Harper, who has been working for Playdom since November, a company who specialise in Facebook games. Continue reading “Facebook won’t eat your children”

Marketplace maturity ratings off to shaky start

The new marketplace maturity ratings system, as announced here in the merchants round table on the official forum has got off to a shaky start, the first shaky start being moving the discussion thread to the merchants roundtable, because unless Linden Lab have changed something, plenty of merchants won’t even have access to that forum…..ah someone has their eye on the ball, since I first posted this and people mentioned it being in the rountable, someone at Linden Lab has sensibly moved the discussion back to the commerce forum where people do have access.  Another part of the shaky start being people wondering why their items have been set to a certain maturity level, general, moderate or adult being the levels.

This is a sensible approach from Linden Lab, maturity ratings on the marketplace should match those inworld, so this is a sensible move. This really should have happened long ago, but one wonders whether Linden Lab departments actually converse with each other, not only because this change has been brought in because of the arrival of teens on the grid, meaning it really should have happened prior to the grid merge, but also because the maturity ratings appear to be different to those inworld in terms of content. Continue reading “Marketplace maturity ratings off to shaky start”