Eight years blogging about Second Life

Winter Ice Rock Fest 2015_001
8 years blogging about Second Life!

On 18th December 2015 marks eight years since I first started to blog about Second Life news and events back on 18th December 2007. Since then I have enjoyed reporting and sharing things that matter the most.

My main focus has been Second Life and OpenSim since 2007. For the next few years the focus will be on Second Life still but I will be blogging about the upcoming Project Sansar too due to launch to the general public sometime in 2016.

Thanks to everybody that has followed my blog since 2007 and I will be blogging for many more years to come. Here are some stats I would like to share with you all..

Blog stats since 2007

  • 2. 328 blog posts since 2007
  • 462, 526 total views since 2007
  • 170, 082 total visitors since 2007
  • 859 views (Best Views Ever) on 16th May 2014
  • 565 blog followers so far along with 3, 921 other people

Blog stats for 2015

  • Views – 76, 843
  • Visitors – 42, 984 
  • Likes – 893
  • Comments – 475

2016 upcoming milestones

  • Hope to reach 500, 000 total hits/views during 2016
  • Hope to have 600 blog followers / 4, 000 other people during 2016
  • Next year marks my 10th anniversary in Second Life on 31st October 2016
  • Next year marks my 9th year blogging about Second Life on 18th December 2016

I can’t wait to start reporting about the news and events during 2016. I hope you can enjoy the journey with me too. 🙂


Linden Lab announces Project Bento – new bones and attachment points added to the Second Life Avatar Skeleton

On Wednesday 16th December Linden Lab announced Project Bento, adding new bones and attachment points to the Second Life Avatar Skeleton. This is the biggest change to avatars in years and the good news is that it’s fully backward compatible with existing avatars.

This is excellent news for sure and this announcement sounds very exciting indeed. 🙂

We know how much work, value, personalization and emotional investment goes into a Second Life avatar, so we have always been careful when considering avatar changes. While we want to make improvements, we also want to maximize backward compatibility. Get ready for the biggest thing that’s happened to avatars in years …

Ever wish you could incorporate a tail, wings, or second set of arms into your avatar? How about having animations for facial expressions and finger movements? Yes, we know that there are some incredibly creative workarounds that give you some of these, but they can’t leverage skeletal animation, so they have been very complex, often fragile, and very expensive in performance and resources both in your Viewer and the Simulator.

We are introducing extensions to the standard Second Life Avatar Skeleton that give you dozens of new bones to support both rigging and animation, and accompanying new attachment points! This extended skeleton, which is fully backward compatible with existing avatars, rigging and animation, gives creators the power to build more sophisticated avatars than ever before.

This will give creators the power to build more sophisticated avatars than ever before. It will be interesting to see what kind of creations will be created with the new Project Bento.

We’ve developed all this in collaboration with many expert Resident content creators and with the developers of the most popular tools for creating avatars and animations, so there will quickly be versions of those tools you can use to help take advantage of these changes.

Linden Lab have been working on this project for the last few months or so and it’s still in a work in progress project. Apparently Linden Lab invited a small number of residents that had specialized knowledge for this new project.

The skeleton extensions include this…

  • 11 extra limb bones for wings, additional arms, or extra legs.
  • 6 tail bones
  • 30 bones in the hands (all 10 fingers!)
  • 30 bones for facial expressions
  • 2 other new bones in the head for animating ears or antennae
  • 13 new attachment points associated with the new bones

Avatar Changes over the years 

    • April 2011 – Avatar Physics
    • July 2011 – Mesh
    • June 2012 – Server Side Appearance
    • February 2014 – Fitted Mesh
    • March 2015 – Hover Control
    • December 2015 – Bento

Getting started with Project Bento

To experience the changes, you’ll need to download the Project Viewer and upload any content using the new skeleton extensions to the Aditi Beta Test Grid (most regions on the Beta Test Grid will allow this; some may be in use for other testing and not yet have these updates). Once we have finalized the skeleton extensions, we will enable uploads using them to the main Second Life grid and the real fun can begin!

Project Bento Introduction Video 

Cathy Foil who is a member of the Project Bento team uploaded this introduction video below showing Project Bento which runs for 52 minutes.

Sending Feedback

What do you think about the announcement on Project Bento ?

Feel free to comment below! 🙂