Friday, May 29, 2015

A Crash Dancing, Scope Riding, Anvil Dumping Safari

Jessica.Pixel: I decided to be human today so lets hope all of my hair makes it
Thirza Ember: I feel like hair like that deserves its own greeting
Wizard Gynoid: at least it's not up her bum
Ms Pixel and her remarkable hair

          There was loose talk at the 54th HGSafari about gorean virgins and Mal Burns, most of which I can't divulge.
Fuschia Nightfire: when I was a noob, me and a friend once did a parachute jump from a sky platform and landed in a Gorean village, where she was taken as a slave, and this is the absolute truth, I never saw her again

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

The Supremacy of Twinity

There is nothing, nothing at all, like an urgent deadline to make time wasting seem like a good idea. Of course, we are spoiled for choice when it comes to time wasting, between all the many online and RL activities available here in the Western world. But it seems likely that if you're looking for the Supreme waste of time in virtual worlds, Twinity is it. It's hard to say which was more surprising, to notice that my first visit to Twinity was back in 2011, or to discover it still exists. The fact that little has changed is no big shock, for while someone who's been away from SL for a couple of years might be amazed by the advent of mesh, Twinity was always that way.
Putting a map on the wall just makes it even more obvious (and sad)
that these guys never did get around to recreating 3D cities.

It always takes a bit to remember how stuff works, and sheesh what is going on with that nose??! becomes your number one obsession whenever you dig out an old avie. Luckily most places are empty, so nobody's going to notice your body overhaul. 
You can check out any time you like, but ...
Moving around on this grid makes the Kitely Waitaminutesighwhileweturnonthelightsare yousureyourealllyneedtogotothatsim? room seem positively supersonic. Wherever you go, you never feel like you're properly 'outside', not even when you get to the ghetto. The oversize buildings here make you about the dimensions of a cat which, in turn, makes the animated cats about the size of rats, I suppose. And surely that's a CGTexture texture there, isn't it? Maybe not.

Friday, May 22, 2015

AAA Little Nightfire

          Flashing can be bad for people. But if you don't have a photosensitive health issue, then animated attached art - let's call it Triple A ! - is probably the best thing out there, especially when combined with live music. Fuschia Nightfire put on a cracking display for the HG Safari First Anniversary party this week, and it was interesting to hear a bit about what went into it. 
          First off, where did the inspiration for all the bright colors and attachments come from?
Fuschia Nightfire: I think it was Wizzy's idea actually. We were chatting about the party and said it would be good if we could get SaveMe to come, but realised that probably wouldn't happen, so we joked about making a NOT SaveMe performance, and I realised that with the dancing cat animation and the avatar starter kit, I probably already had some items that we could use. I also have some of her pieces on SL, so it was not difficult to look at those and make my own versions here, like the personal ban lines.
Thirza Ember: technically, did you find it a challenge?

Thursday, May 21, 2015

A year of Safari

whirli placebo: i made it back!! hahaha can i navigate these hypergrids or what     
A year ago today, Wizard Gynoid showed up for the first HG Safari. It was just the two of us.
Wizzy on Week 1 of the Safari
        We left from Craft Grid, because that's where she had an account in open sim. Wizard was no OpenSim noob, she was one of the first to have her fantastic geometric art shown on Reaction Grid, and spent many happy years commuting between SL and Inworldz. But the idea of just jumping about, bouncing off servers and leaping into the unknown, well, that seemed like something that might be more fun to do as a group, where nobody laughed too loud if you were a cloud or had your hair stuck... elsewhere.
Early Safaris were often cloudy. This is week 4, in our first clubhouse on Ilha Magica
          It's called a Safari because

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Safari Lets Go

          Teravus Plaza on OSGrid is where the Safari meets these days, and if you haven't seen the clubhouse yet, please drop by. Southwest corner of the sim, next to the waterfall. There are freebies, posters with info about the group and now also the trail head of the OSST, the OpenSim Scripting Showcase Trail. This week's Safari seemed a good opportunity to talk about what the trail is, and how everyone can contribute, before we headed off into the blue.
Thirza Ember: You can obviously visit the destinations by yourselves, but also we hope that you will bring people you know (in SL especially) who think that OpenSim doesn't have particularly good scripting. We do. It's unstable, but it's amazing. As you probably know, some of the grids on the trail are quite small and can't handle large groups, that's why the OSST is a self guided tour. Many of the scripting destinations are part of a much bigger build. For example, Gimisa's little grid is jam packed with scripting ideas, and Kayaker has that fantastic water sim, to name but two. If you'd like to 'give back'... it would be great if you can spread the word in social media, let the scripters feel the love! There is a group in G+ where you can post your thoughts and photos, where you can give them a sense of your appreciation.
Selby.Evans: and get to know the scripters and their work
PatriciaAnne.Daviau: I have visited a few of the scripting places and think they did a wonderful job on them
Thirza Ember: a special thanks to Fuschia for her fantastic machinima
Stephen.Xootfly: yay, Fuschia
Fuschia Nightfire: i've gone all pink now
Thirza Ember: and don't miss the gifts as you tour around. Gimisa has an inworld search engine, Ferd has cheetahs and elephants, and Kayaker has a flyer - that's a lot of fun.
Fuschia Nightfire: Ferd has the bee too
Stephen.Xootfly: hmm, the cheetah. one of the world's most dishonest animals
Stephen.Xootfly: the other one is the lion
Thirza Ember: note, the scripting trail does not go to Inworldz. But I am sure they contributed something to it.

Thursday, May 7, 2015


Wizard.Gynoid: oic. this is like a pink floyd concert without the marijuana

The fifty-first Safari departed with everyone playing with an Englisch-German translator, so you kinda knew from the first that there was going to be trouble.
First stop, Metropolis grid, and this sims of Art Blue. It's a place where we feel at home, after many presentations and evenings spent in the zoo. Art's impressive collection is worth a visit any time, but this show is something a little special, don't miss the elevator, which is my favorite bit.
Addresses at the end of the post, as always.

A visit to Futurelab means you start out in the hand, which is fair enough.
          Art Blue: please activate voice if possible I will later speak in voice about the moon
Art Blue's Moonrezzer is a bewildering but ultimately thought-provoking show.  Or is it Soulrezzer? Or are there both here in this build? See how this is getting all confusing?
Art spans the virtual world barrier with this latest performance, which occupies a sim at the LEA in SL but is also in the process of being perfected for the OpenSim public on his Futurelab sim in Metropolis. That raises a few challenges as they mod scripts to work in the alternative environment. Cue the booze.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Head in the clouds

       Businessfurry. Yes, it's a word.
       So let's break this Cloud stuff down to distracted non-geek levels.
       Think of an Ikea wardrobe. Now, think of a tub full of bathwater.
       The intertubes are not that big. So when you need to pass something down the tubes, it can't all go at once. It takes time. When it comes to something like water, one bit is very much like another, and it's all moving too quickly for you to notice specific water drops as they flow down the plughole. Doors are small too, and to get a giant wardrobe into your bedroom, it will have to be broken down into pieces and then assembled in situ. But while water is much of a muchness, to construct a wardrobe you need every single one of those panels, screws and packets. Otherwise - well, you know. Screaming, bloodshed, divorce.
        Not everybody knows this, but when you arrive on a sim, your Viewer says to the server where the sim is located: "I'll have one of EVERYTHING!" Not a picture of the stuff on the sim, an actual copy of it. Normal people can't access the items, but it's all in your Viewer's cache - this is how copybots work.
        Why does the Viewer do that? Because ours is not a 'Shoot 'em up, Hunt 'em down' kind of  a platform. The beauty of our virtual worlds lies in the fact that average joes can make, copy and edit things. It's that picaresque, open ended quality to SL and OpenSim that appeals to us and keeps us coming back, despite the instability. But obviously your Viewer hoovering up a copy of every single item - be it a prim, a texture, animation or whatever - makes for lag, and creates all that permissions paranoia.
       But going back to the wardrobe.
       There are many ways that computers can pass stuff between them, but there are really two ways that matter to this post.  One is called Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and the other is User Datagram Protocol (UDP).
        Think of them as two brothers, the Brothers Protocol. Each on a mission to provide you with an Ikea wardrobe.
       TCP is the careful one, he gets all the bits, makes sure they all travel safely across town and into the bedroom where they will be assembled, checking them off against his little list. He only consigns the piece of furniture once it's complete, doorknobs and all.
       UDP is a great guy, but he's not the type to worry if some of the wardrobe packages fall off the back of his truck or get crushed in transit. "Hex tool? What hex tool?"
        So, my question to you - in SL and related worlds, which of these two protocols do you think is moving your virtual wardrobes? Yeah, you guessed it, good ole UDP. Which makes sense, because  UDP is great for things that don't have to travel far or by circuitous routes and when the Lindens set up SL they probably didn't envision a network of independent virtual worlds based on their system dotted all around the planet.  
          That, my friend, is why your hair is up your bum.
           Hypergridding. Or even visiting a place on your home grid. Imagine the scene. A group of people arrive on a sim, all asking for everything and then getting multiple updates every time something changes on the sim, a dance, a gesture, a moving prim. That's a strain on the system. UDP is throwing packages at everyone, and while most of them are okay, there's a lot that can and does go wrong.
          OK then, for all of us who haven't really been paying attention to what the geeks have been talking about for the past year(s), let's just come out and ask: How might all this strain on resources and lousy delivery go away?