Today marks my 10th Rez Day in Second Life


10 years later
It’s my 10th rezday today in Second Life

Today marks my official 10th rez day in Second Life and I am so happy that I have reached this massive milestone. I signed up to Second Life on 31st October 2006 where I started my journey and adventures virtually across the teen grid. I transferred to the main grid back in mid December 2008 when I turned 18 and I couldn’t believe how big Second Life was back then.

Since then I have met so many amazing people over the past ten years, connected with great friends and had fun together. I have enjoyed attending events (Bay CIty events, VWBPE, BURN2, Second Life Birthdays etc), helping out when I can, capturing Second Life through snapshots and sharing whats going on the grid on my blog.

I have visited many OpenSim grids in recent years and I have pretty much enjoyed the experience there. I have been in other virtual worlds in recent years but finding myself always coming back to Second Life in the end.

There have been good times, excitement, celebrations, various dramas, big news announcements made and some sad times during the past ten years in Second Life. I think the introduction of Windlight, Mesh and Bento has made a huge difference in Second Life along with the tons of useful improvements made too. The next ten years is going to be interesting to see what the lab comes up with next in terms of improving Second Life further.

Here is one of the first snapshots I took in Second Life of my avatar.

October 2006
My first snapshot

Here is what the user interface (viewer 1) used to look when I joined Second Life. Wow!

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Blue Linden office hours underwater

For more historical snapshots of when I started taking snapshots in Second Life, see here.

I can’t wait to see what the next ten years has in store for me in Second Life and so the journey continues. I will continue to blog and share my snapshots with you during the next ten years hopefully.

Thanks to all of you who have been part of my Second Life for the past ten years. 🙂 

Happy Halloween! 🙂 

Ebbe Linden shows off first demo of Sansar


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Today Ebbe Linden CEO of Linden Lab demonstrated virtual reality using Sansar on stage during Wall Street Journal’s Live conference in Laguna Beach, California. This is the first video demo of Sansar (1min/51secs) showing new footage of the next generation platform due to open to the public in January 2017.

In the first video demo of Sansar Ebbe Linden is showing the audience how easy it is to grab things and move virtual furniture using with the Oculus Touch controller. Ebbe Linden talked about how users will be able to create, buy and sell virtual goods within Sansar. Ebbe said that food is a tricky thing in VR and that there will be a currency/marketplace.

Ebbe Linden finishes by saying that Sansar is now in the creator preview phrase and that hundreds of creators have been invited so far and the roll out will continue right into Q1 2017.

There are now less than three months to go until the launch of Sansar!

Linden Lab announces 360 Snapshots


Today Linden Lab has announced 360 snapshots that will make it easier to share 360 degree images with everyone from Second Life. The 360 snapshots feature has been on the wish list for many years and it’s good to see the lab are now finally introducing 360 snapshots.

If pictures are worth a thousand words, 360 degree images must be worth millions. That’s why we decided to develop a feature called 360 Snapshots that will make it easy to capture and share 360º images from Second Life. Check out some of these samples!

360 snapshots is now available in the latest Project Viewer however please note you will need to host images on a web server to view/share them. There are still issues with the image quality and there is no support yet for sharing images from the viewer.

The lab are working on the issues as this is still early days and it’s going to be great when the new 360 Snapshots feature gets rolled out in the official Second Life viewer. Exciting times ahead for sure! 🙂

Useful Links

What do you think of the 360 Snapshots blog announcement ? 

Linden Lab blogs about what’s happening now in Second Life


On 24th October Linden Lab posted a new blog post about what’s happening now in Second Life. The lab talks about three new features including new Sandbox regions, Portal Park 2.0 and the introduction of LLSit feature. See below for further details about each of new features and please spread the word. 🙂

New Sandbox Regions

First up, we’re proud to introduce 5 new Premium Sandboxes! Like other Premium sandboxes, these are only available to Premium members. We have allocated 4 new regions for cross server code testing, perfect for those multi-region experiences; the Blue Steel, Magnum, LeTigre and Second Life Main regions are each Premium sandboxes arranged directly adjacent to each other in a square. Because one is in the main simulator channel and one is in each Release Candidate (RC) channel, when we roll new RC versions of the simulator it will be easy to test differences and potential issues with region crossings.

Portal Park 2.0

Next up is a brand new design for our hugely popular portal system! Last year we introduced the Portal Park in our 2015 Halloween Promo, which served as a hub for people to gather and access new destinations. Available now is a dual hub and spoke section that spans 2 regions. Now you have quick access to twice as many of the new destinations on the grid! There are two roads,the Red and Yellow brick roads that will take you to their own main hubs. From there, the spokes or pathways extend out and will lead you to teleport gates to the new experiences. Be sure to visit and revisit these parks as the destinations can be both seasonal and/or hints for what’s to come

LLSit

Finally, do you need a diabolical trap for your dungeon? Or, to strap avatars into the seat of a rollercoaster for their own safety? Or, perhaps just some basic crowd control to minimize disruptions during a townhall or event? Introducing the LLSit feature. These new LSL functions allow creators to force avatars onto sit targets as part of an Experience. Scripts can move avatars into specific prims, shuffle them between seats, and prevent them from getting out of their chair before it is safe. It is now also possible to prevent Residents from sitting where you don’t want them by setting a simple parameter on the prim. Whichever way you use this new capability we are looking forward to seeing what you create!

It’s good to see the lab continuing to add new features and improvements to Second Life. I’m sure these new features announced this week will be most welcomed news by the Second Life community. 🙂

The Man & The Temple Burns This Weekend at BURN2 2016 in Second Life


Burn2 will be ending this weekend in Second Life for another year however the popular annual burning of the man and the temple takes place this weekend. Yay! 🙂

You really don’t want to miss either of these exciting Burn2 events. Everyone is welcome to attend so please spread the word. Please arrive early as the regions will full up fast! 🙂

The Man Burn

(SLURL)  – Saturday 22nd October 2016

  • 12pm SLT 
  • 6pm SLT 

The Temple Burn

(SLURL) – Sunday 23rd October 2016 

  • 12pm SLT 
  • 6pm SLT 

About BURN2

BURN2 is an extension of the Burning Man festival and community into the world of Second Life. It is an officially sanctioned Burning Man regional event, and the only virtual world event out of more than 100 real world Regional groups and the only regional event allowed to burn the man. The BURN2 Team operates events year around, culminating in an annual major festival of community, art and fire in the fall – a virtual echo of Burning Man itself.

Insilico regions closing down very soon


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Insilico – 20th October 2016

On 19th October Insilico announced that the cyberpunk themed Insilico regions will be closing down very soon in Second Life. Apparently the central and south regions will be closed down between 28th October – 1st November 2016. The East and South East regions will remain until 17th November 2016.

According to the manger named Abeus Madruga Insilico’s revenue sources have never fully recovered and it’s a combination of losses that have slowly eroded away to a point where they can no longer cover the tier costs. They are not in a position to keep covering the difference.

It will be really sad to see Insilico regions shut down soon after being in Second Life for over 8 years. Insilico was one of the most popular and most beautiful locations to visit in Second Life.

During the course of 2016 so many well known places have closed down due to high land tier costs making it impossible for places to keep existing. I hope that the lab will reduce land tier costs soon otherwise more places will shut down too.

insilico-regions
Insilico – 20th October 2016

Here is the full blog post posted by Abeus Madruga

InSilico had a tough road ahead of itself after the loss of Skills and a two week lockout…specifically, a financial one. While we were able to float by on generosity, that cushion has run out. Sadly, our primary sources of income have never fully recovered. It’s not any one thing, but a combination of losses that have slowly eroded away: Malls are drying up, Skills’ MP sales disappearing, fewer long term residential rentals, etc. Suffice it to say that there has been a growing short fall (even before), and up until now we’ve been making up the difference out of pocket when needed. That shortage this month will be substantial however, and unfortunately we are not in a position to keep covering the difference.

So, we had to make a decision. Either make a drastic reduction to just two sims (a full region and a homestead), or close InSilico as a whole while we are still in a position to do so on our own terms. After a lot of discussion and soul searching with the current staff and some players (and a lot of antacids), we’ve opted for the latter…to go out whole.

This is a very hard choice for us, and not one that we’ve come to lightly. Even though it might be possible to survive as just two sims, the technical aspects of that were daunting. Not only would it require a substantial shifting of the existing city infrastructure very quickly (most of which would fall on Stark), we would also need to cut key locations such as Mars and cyberspace to free up the required prims to do so. And certainly we’d suffer other loses in the form of rental revenue and reduced confidence during that period. All said, we just weren’t entirely confident ourselves that we could make it work in such a short amount of time. We also didn’t want to have to keep turning to the community for donations to keep us afloat during that process…but certainly the one thing we didn’t want was to go through all of this, and then find ourselves back in this same position 2, 3, 4 months down the line. We don’t want to wither away, slowly or not.

Perhaps it’s just a sign of the times, the state of things in general, or our age and reputation that have brought us to this point. Maybe we should have dropped a couple regions from the start…Either, any, or…it doesn’t really matter now. We have chosen to come to a close with InSilico as it is now, intact and committed to our memories in the same way. It’s a sacrifice, but not one of compromise.

As I said in my previous (albeit premature) Goodbye/Love letter to InSilico during the lockout…We’ve had some good times, even some great times. 9 years’ worth of stories that will continue to transcend the sims on which they were told…I couldn’t ask for anything more than that as a legacy.

insilico_005
Insilico – 20th October 2016

So what happens now ?

So what happens now? Well, that’s up to you. We still have the sims until the end of their respective tiers. Central and South will be dropped on the 28th/1st, but East and South East will remain until November 17th …after which they too will go their separate ways. The Ning will hang on for a while longer after that, but for how long I cannot say as we don’t have access to the creator account. In the meantime, continue RPing and taking in the sites. Enjoy it while you can. Take pictures, tell war stories, have a party. ICly the city isn’t going anywhere, even if the sims are. We aren’t blowing it up or tanking it…we’re just going to fade to black so it can continue to exist in your imaginations and stories. We’ve locked all rental boxes, but if you’re a current renter…feel free to stay for as long as the sims remain.

P.S. Shoda won’t be closing as it is privately funded, so it will continue to exist to carry on the INSILICO setting’s legacy, even if only now as a background element to whatever its own future may hold. Expect to hear more from Stark & Co. about that soon.

P.P.S. Please, no donations. We’ve already had one fundraiser this year, and received numerous donations when we reopened. And, to be honest, it’s never something I’ve been comfortable with asking for. While the thoughts and sentiment are appreciated, it’s just a band-aid to the greater issues. Our time has come. We can make peace with that.

Here are some of my snapshots I took of Insilico today, please see below. 

insilico_002
Insilico – 20th October 2016
insilico_004
Insilico – 20th October 2016
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Insilico – 20th October 2016
Insilico - 20th October 2016
Insilico – 20th October 2016

Hopefully the Insilico legacy will live on and maybe sometime in the future it may return either on OpenSim or Sansar or on something else. We will have to wait and see.

Growth returns on OpenSim grids – October 2016 Update


Maria Korolov posted a blog post on 15th October called Growth resumes on OpenSim grids via Hypergrid Business. This is good news to hear that OpenSim grids have started to grow again in terms of new regions, new users and active users. Yay! 🙂

The public OpenSim grids added more than 4,000 new regions this month, registered more than 4,400 new users, and grew by 735 new active users after maintenance and other outages depressed the numbers last month.

The graph below shows the land area growth of OpenSim’s public grids from June 2010 up to October 2016 in region equivalents. As you can see there have been some noticeable drops in regions in recent years. The trend continues to be on the up for OpenSim grids at the moment and it will be interesting to see what impact Sansar will have on the OpenSim numbers during 2017 when it opens to the public.

(Hypergrid Business data.)

These are the top most popular OpenSim grids at the moment as of October 2016:

These OpenSim grids have the most regions at the moment as of October 2016:

The Hypergrid

The hypergrid has continued to grow in recent months and years with more communities joining and more muiti-grid events happening every month. Active users on the Hypergrid has increased a lot during the past year or so.

(Hypergrid Business data.)

Other OpenSim News

This graph shows the total number of responses for each grid from the Seventh Annual OpenSim Grid Survey.

(Hypergrid Business data.)

My thoughts on OpenSim Grids vs the Second Life Main Grid 

OpenSim grids have increased in land size, active users and in new users during the course of 2016 so far which is good to see happening. At the moment OpenSim grids have three times the regions than the Second Life main grid does. There are over 64, 000+ regions on OpenSim compared with Second Life just over the 24, 000 regions mark.

There have been various OpenSim grids that have had outrages and cleanups during 2016 which has had a noticeable impact on the grid numbers. Every week there has been a decline in regions in Second Life with only a handful of weeks being positive growth during the course of 2016 so far.

Looking ahead to 2017 I think it’s going to be an interesting year for both OpenSim grids and Second Life with the launch of Sansar going public and VR becoming more popular than ever before. I wonder if this impact will have any the grid numbers on OpenSim and Second Life in 2017-2018 ?

It would be really good to see more growth in terms of regions and active users in Second Life during 2017-2018. I think that in 2017 OpenSim grids will grow even more with the hypergrid becoming a large grid.

Stay updated on the latest OpenSim news via Hypergrid Business.

BURN2 2016: Main Attractions To Visit


Here are some of the main attractions to get started at this year’s BURN2 2016 festival happening right now through until Sunday 23rd October 2016. There are so many great exhibits this year worth checking out along with live music events around the clock.

The best time to visit the regions is in the early hours (SLT) of the morning for less lag and with fewer people around. Let’s get started > Click the SLURLs below to teleport to them and have a great adventure around the regions! 🙂

Please spread the word and this useful BURN2 2016 landmarks guide! 🙂

Welcome Gate SLURL

BURN2 2016

Center Camp SLURL  

BURN2 2016

The Man SLURL

BURN2 2016

The Temple SLURL

BURN2 2016

The Lamplighters Village SLURL

BURN2 2016

Live Stage SLURL

da-vinci-steampunk-carousel_002

DMV Sandbox SLURL

BURN2 2016

Inner Child Camp SLURL

BURN2 2016

Da Vinci GnomeTrap SLURL

da-vinci-gnometrap_001

DaVinci’s Backyard SLURL

BURN2 2016

Da Vinci Steampunk Carousel SLURL

BURN2 2016

More info at burn2.org

BURN2 2016: Let’s Explore Da Vinci’s Workshop


burn2-2016_008
BURN2 Welcome Gate

BURN2 Da Vinci’s Workshop 2016 is taking place now in Second Life until Sunday 23rd October 2016. There are tons of events happening everyday on the playa from live DJ music, lamplighters daily processions, art tours and much more.

For the past six years BURN2 has been resident supported and it’s been a huge success thanks to the BURN2 organisers of the event. I have attended every BURN2 event since 2009 and I have really enjoyed the experience. Keep a watch out for me as I will be exploring the regions in the days ahead. 🙂

The burning of the Man will take place on Saturday 22nd October followed by the burning of the Temple on Sunday 23rd October 2016.

burn2-2016_001
BURN2 Welcome Gate

InWorldz Relay Weekend Event Schedule 2016


Starting at 8am IWT through until 8pm IWT today marks the 5th annual Relay Weekend for Relay For Life of InWorldz. There will be themed laps, live dj music and much more this year. For anyone that loves the Second Life version of Relay For Life every year I strongly suggest you trying out the InWorldz version of the event.

This year with incredible support from the InWorldz community they recently surpassed the LZ$ 4.5 million Izzie mark. Another new record was passed this year with a grand total of 16 teams now taking part in Relay For Life of InWorldz. Yay! 🙂

Teleport Link > http://places.inworldz.com/RFL%20Awareness/87/235/23 (inworldz link)

Here’s the main event schedule for Relay Weekend 2016

Ceremony, Entertainment and Lap Costume theme Schedule for Relay on Saturday 15th October 2016. (8am – 8pm IWT)

**Environment early evening**
  • 7:00  Warm Up Party DJ Martin Glom
  • 8:00  Opening Ceremonies
  • 8:30 -10am  Survivors and Caregivers laps DJ  Ashley
  • Martin Theme  workout gear
  • 10:00 DJ  GRIFFIN
  • Theme  SPORTSWEAR
  • 11:00 DJ Cheryl
  • Foxx Theme Leather
**Environment Mid Night**
  • 12:00  Luminaria Ceremony – Sage and Rycon Bamaisin
  • Theme Formal
  • 1:00  DJ Kira Wildfire
  • Theme Feel Good Blues – Wear your fav blues clothes!
  • 2:00  DJ Martin with OldeSoul
  • Theme Purpleicious
  • 3:00  DJ  Fantasia Rhodes
  • Theme  Country – Fav Country Wear
  • 4:00  DJ  Arathorn Dragomir
**Environment Morning**
  • 5:00  Fight Back Ceremony DJ Cataplexia
  • Theme Hero
  • 6:00  DJ Bain
  • Theme Colors of the Rainbow
  • 7:00  DJ Cataplexia
  • Theme Calling All Lightbringers (wear Whites)
  • 7:45  Closing Ceremony
  • 8:00  Final Lap DJ Cataplexia

About RFL of InWorldz 

Relay For Life® is the signature fundraiser of the American Cancer Society®. Relay For Life of InWorldz is an opportunity to get together with family and friends and ~Celebrate the lives of those who have battled cancer ~Remember loved ones lost to the disease ~Fight Back against a disease that takes too much