Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The "Nicholaz Edition" of the Second Life Viewer

I have been using the Nicholaz viewer now for over a week, and must say I am very confident and happy about it. I don’t have more crashes, and when I crash, I can say that it is not due to this viewer.
What is the difference between the official Second Life viewer and the Nicholaz viewer?
The most important thing why I switched, was that I was not at all happy with the current big chat window. Your screen is almost filled, and if you have several IM’s you need to go from the left to the right side. And if you are lucky, you did not miss a message for a longer period of time, and your correspondent too, who is waiting for an answer.
The Nicholaz viewer gives your friends in a separate window, like it used to be in a previous Second Life viewer.
The IM window stays rather big, but I have the feeling that I can work easier with this viewer, than with the official one.

Here are a few details:

- new: detection for redmap situations (connection to sim lost)
plus option (ctrl+alt+s) to enable/disable warning
- new: option (ctrl+alt+s) to suppress window for friends going
online/offline
User Interface (saving screen space, reverting most of the voice
chatterbox):
- double click action for inventory items (wear, teleport)
- friend list as a separate window (and button in bottom toolbar)
- groups as a separate window as in pre-voice versions
- rearranged buttons in Group-IMs when is voice disabled (save
vertical space)
- allowing lesser minimum heights for IM view and chat history
- brought back the old "New IM" tab for the IM view
- "Near Me" hides chat entry when undocked and base-chat open
(optional)
- IM and active speakers hide voice controls when voice turned off
- rearranged Gestures box in "Near Me"
- swapped direction of "<<" and ">>" buttons for active speakers
- option to hide the "Release Keys" button (ctrl+alt+s)
- status buttons (stand up, release keys, etc.) and media buttons
(master volume, play audio streams, etc) arranged differently

Should you be interested, you can always have a look or download the "Nicholaz edition" here.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Photoshoot Miss Second Life Belgium 2007-2008

Some time ago, Ninake Benelli won the Miss Belgium contest in Second Life for 2007-2008. Amongst the prizes, she won also a photoshoot. It took a while, but here it is, the exclusive photoshoot with the one and only Miss Belgium Second Life.

All pictures can be viewed in my flickr stream.


Monday, October 29, 2007

Second Life vendors file real-world lawsuit in New York

Is it a game, or is it RL? It does not stop, the file suits. This time not against Linden Lab, but against a 36 year old New Yorker, who claims not knowing of possible suing in a virtual world.

The lawsuit, filed last week in a federal court in Brooklyn, accuses the man of copycatting in Second life, according the New York Post.
The vendors suing the man say he violated copyright and trademark laws by duplicating their products. The lawsuit seeks damages equal to three times their lost profits, without specifying an amount.

Claims of product cloning in Second Life have already spawned at least one other lawsuit, filed in July in a federal court in Tampa, Florida. Other members also have sued Linden Lab over alleged seizures of their virtual property.

Than you have that other lawsuit of July, where Second Life adult goods magnate Alderman, known in the virtual world as Stroker Serpentine, sued an avatar named Volkov Catteneo for copyright infringement. Alderman claimed the avatar sold illicit copies of his SexGen Platinum bed, a piece of furniture for the virtual boudoir. Because Alderman didn’t know Catteneo’s real-life identity, the case was filed as Eros LLC v John Doe.
Now, after almost four months of searching, lawyers have identified a 19 year old man, of North Richland Hills, Tx., as Second Life avatar “Volkov Catteneo”, although this young man denies to be Volkov, according Second Life/Reuters.

We can say that Second Life is not just a game anymore, it never was. You have to be very careful of what you do in SL, but let's say, that the RL rules also exists in SL. Don't do anything that you wouldn't do in RL.

But for most of the avatars, Second life is just fun, it is an opportunity to meet, to explore the virtual world, without thinking of what consequences we can endure, by doing something that we would not do in RL.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Possible Fraud in Second Life !!!!!

It is communicated around that a serious fraud is in progress on Second Life: an invitation is sent with a link, if it is accepted your avatar is stolen. The people that take possession of the avatar take possession of all the powers and obviously also of the data of the credit card. (non confirmed info, but better pass it around)

A night to remember......

Saturday night in Second Life, was supposed to be a nice quiet evening. No jobs, no parties to attend, just an evening to get things straight and to relax.

It all started at my place, where I logged in. Usually I go through my messages, as I do in RL too when I start the day.;))
Then , the next question was, what am I going to do today? There were some Halloween parties going on, I could read in those messages. But to go there I needed at least a costume to wear, which I did not had, so, I went through “search”, looking for a store , where they sell Halloween stuff.
When I arrived at the place, it took me several minutes to rezz, but saw, almost immediately, a big box, which you should click upon, to went for a Halloween ride. So I did.
But that Halloween ride was very short, too short....I ended at the exit...without seeing anything..lol. At that time there was another avatar standing there, asking where that ride was....
We started to chat, and I noticed that, even she was on the grid from May, she reacted as she had only spend two days inworld. She told me about the episode, she saw on tv, about CSI, and was looking for the SIM, which I could not find immediately.
After a while I had a friend calling me. I ended our conversation, and went to the beautiful SIM of Midnight Reflection, where I was supposed to meet my friend.

To have a nice chat, we sat at a chunk of wood , next to a fire place, and started to talk. She was laying in my arms, and we were talking about things that happened lately on Second Life. Suddenly, without a warn, she disappeared. Nothing special, I hear you all say. But this was different. There was no lead for a crash, we sat quietly next to that fire, did not do anything, besides talking....well...chatting in IM.
I was confident that she would return, and stayed at the same spot, waiting....and waiting....and waiting.
Some avatars came by, looked at me, but did not say anything, until, a nice looking female avatar walked up to me, and asked if she may sit dawn. Yes, of course, I said, and thought she was going to take the spot that was free, in my arms, but she decided to take another spot next to the fireplace. We talked, and when she asked me, what I was doing there, and I explained that I was waiting for someone, she said goodnight and left instantly. I did not had the chance to thank her for the chat, lol.

And time went by......before I noticed there was another woman standing before me, totally naked, dancing. I don’t know how long she was doing that dance there, if she came with clothes on.....but when I spotted her...she stopped dancing and clicked the free pink ball to sit right in my arms. I must say, I was a bit surprised, and asked her what she was doing, but she did not say anything. She just sat there, without saying a word. After a few minutes she disappeared, without a sound, without a kick...
I was waiting on that same spot for about one hour, and decided to call it for the evening, as my friend was not returning. She had a total crash of her pc, so I found out later.
What was supposed to be a nice quiet night in SL, turned out to be a very interesting experience, when a guy is laying at a romantic place, alone....with free pink balls besides him....;))

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Halloween Linden Lab joke

"Second Life will be unavailable for approximately 5 hours on Wednesday, October 31st. We will be adding additional hardware to our asset storage system to keep up with growth. No software upgrades are planned, no new viewers will be required after the downtime."
This was the text that we could read on the official blog some days ago. As many of us were asking themselves, what about Halloween? Did Linden Lab forgot this major annual event. Or was it a joke from Linden lab towards all residents? Normally it was not a problem for all the parties, but what if those 5 hours would become 6, or even 7 hours?
Finally, after tons of reactions , another prove was established that the Linden's are listening, and they apologized for not having thought about this before they scheduled the closing down of the grid.

"
The planned service outage has been canceled. More time is needed to prepare the updates, and it may prove to be possible to do so without downtime for all of Second Life.And yes… the angry mob surrounding the castle with torches and pitchforks made its voice heard! I admit to being totally oblivious by scheduling an outage on the date of one of our favorite annual celebrations. Mea culpa! The shambling horror will slip back into the shadows… for now…"
This is the updated text on the official blog.
Thanks Joshua!

Eleven-cities tour in Second Life?

The Elfstedentocht, or Eleven-cities Tour is a speed skating competition and leisure skating tour held irregularly in the province of Friesland (Frisia), Netherlands.
The tour, almost 200 km in length, is conducted on frozen canals, rivers and lakes between the eleven Frisian cities. The tour is not held each year, mostly due to the fact that the Dutch winters do not permit skating on natural ice every year. Adding to that, the tour currently features about 15,000 amateur skaters taking part, putting high requirements on the quality of the ice. There is a stated regulatory requirement for the race to take place that the ice must be (and remain at) a minimum thickness of 15 centimetres along the entirety of the course.
Since 1909, the tour has been held 15 times. The often cold weather and harsh conditions have helped to make the race a major event in the Netherlands, where many will travel to Friesland to see the tour or watch the competition skaters on television.

For the start of the skate season, the island AEGON in Second Life, has created a big block of ice, with a natural skating rink and café where people can meet.
As it was from 1997 that the last "Elftsedentocht" was held, people can start dreaming about their virtual "Eleven-cities tour" in Second Life.;))
This island will mostly be visited by the Dutch, with their ice skate tradition, but nevertheless, it could be a great opportunity for all of us to have a wonderful experience on virtual ice.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Inventor Contest in Second Life


Get your invention ideas to Electrolux, because the deadline is November 1, and the contest was just announced on October 18, 2007! Your challenge is to create useful devices that solve specific challenges in Second Life. What's at stake is up to 100,000 Linden Dollars (L$s)!!!!
Electrolux is the global producer of household appliances, owner of brands as Frigidaire and Eureka and several other internationally marketed appliance brands.

If you have an idea in RL, but did not had the opportunity to develop, this SL contest could be your chance to get it all started.
Electrolux agrees that you hold all intellectual property rights and it will not disclose your product or concept without your permission. But check and double check the contest's rules and regulations before submitting.
You can submit a concept, you don't need to submit a finished product yet, so maybe, that could help to meet the timeline a bit easier.

Another company, finding its way through Second Life. Another marketing concept being exploited by a multinational enterprise.
Although the announcement came rather late, it is still not too late to submit your invention or idea and become a Linden millionaire.;))
It is amazing and I am glad to see, how many corporates are finding their way throughout the virtual world.
Are you aware that you are being part of something that will be a daily device in the future? The virtual world, where you will be able to do things, to buy things, to develop things etc........

"Electrolux Innovation Grant Program
Assignment:
Second Life residents will be encouraged to submit ideas for useful devices designed to solve a specific challenge. They can present ideas already in development or projects that are still in the concept phase. They can work either as a team or as an individual.
Electrolux will decide among the submissions which projects they deem worthwhile, feasible, and able to be completed. From the projects they select (a number at their discretion) they can then award them significant amounts of grant money in Linden dollars based on merit."

Monday, October 22, 2007

Blogger Party October 21st

Last Sunday, the monthly blogger party wad held at Codie's place. Code herself and Vint Falken were hosts. This month's theme was "Robots".
As soon as I arrived at Code's Lounge, on the top of the roof, one could already see what this month's theme was. Some of the colleague bloggers had really made some efforts for this occasion, as you can see in the snapshots, taken that evening. The party started with a little bad luck. On the very same SIM, there was another party going on, meaning that the SIM was full, at a certain moment. Luckily, it was a European party, on Sunday, so it did not last very long.
Some of us may have had some difficulties getting at the party, but eventually, I think everyone who intended to come was there.
Due to the extra long party hour, we only saw mot of the European Bloggers, and not all of the Americans, only the"die hards", because they would come a bit later, when the Europeans were already gone to bed.
Thanks Codie and Vint for this wonderful party.
You can see all the pictures of this blogger gathering in my flickr stream here.
Don't forget to surf to all other blogposts of this party, as there are Raul and Alysha

The End is Near.

As I told you last week, EagleWolf ran out of prims on Doornroosje in Second Life. And he still wanted to build. So, what would be the best solution to solve his hunger for building…..indeed, buy another place.
One day, he sent us an invitation to visit a place that he bought. Exactly like the previous time, he wanted to show us his latest buy. A small island it was, not so big as the other one, but I can assume, with much more prims
The next time I visited the spot, there were some stones, just like those from Stonehenge. In the middle of these stones there was a campfire, with tree-trunks, to sit on, around it. At that time I had no clue what his intentions were, but I soon found out.
He started to built a whole new castle in the Second life sky at 300 m. And not just a normal castle, not at all the same as Doornroosje. When he started , together with another friend, Vera Leven, there was not much to see, except some walls and a labyrinth inside. I don’t remember how long they were working on that basic part, but I assume it has strong foundations.:))
Vera has built SUDOKU games in the labyrinth, something I never saw in SL before..., and from there they built their way up, in several floors. And on top of it, they made a gathering place, where there could be some performances on a stage, where you can drink Guinness draught, where you can have a laughter and dance. Indeed, it is not a Belgian pub Eagle made, but an Irish one, also with a juke box, full of Irish pipesongs.;))
Eagle and Vera have accomplished another piece of art, another building in Second Life, a place for friends to gather, to have fun, to dance, just like we used to do. Some of you have already visited the place and they can only confirm, even though they have seen it all yet.
You will be able to visit the place at Thorns, Eagles Nest & Wolf Henge 50.95.22. There you can find a kind of balloon. You right click your mouse, take a seat, right click again and touch. The balloon will take you on a short journey to the entrance of the Irish looking pub.
Soon, the place where that other castle, Doornroosje, is standing, Roses, will be sold. If you are interested to visit the place, you will not have to waste any time.
If you are interested to buy the place, please IM EagleWolf Kubrick inworld.

Picture of this new place will follow soon.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Doornroosje in Second Life

Some day ago I wrote an article about Doornroosje, a place build by Eaglewolf. Here are the pictures of that beautiful castle.

Track Hax......on track

I hear you asking....who is Track Hax?

Track Hax is co-founder and managing director of Avatrait.com and Avatrait Gallery inworld.
Many Second Life artists, have their art work at the Avatrait website.(Looker Lumet included, ;))
To know why he started this gallery, you need to know something about his RL life, as he always had an interest for art.
"My imagination kept me good company when I was younger. I always liked fantasy art, really any art that could expand on reality. I always wondered what it would be like to be able to go to the places of fantasy, to meet the characters of imagination. For me, SL art is that."

With this passion he looks for the finest art in Second Life, with an eye of an expert.

"Anyone can take a snapshot in Second Life, but not everyone can create a work of art. And that walks me into the second question. I look at thousands of images every week and although I enjoy almost all of them, I'm looking for the best. Technical excellence, the creative component and will it sell. There, I said it, will it sell? I think the very best work in SL will sell and that is why I want to expose and promote it in the real world. I have already placed our artists works in a retail store in Chicago Illinois. Several well respected Galleries are going to be showing works from our Gallery. The value is already there, we just have to introduce it to the art loving public."Now Track Hax, which is his avatar name, has made a blog, where he will post every interesting article, so everyone can follow his journey to different locations, his meetings with Linden Lab, the expansion of Avatrait.
And that is exactly why I put this on my blog, as I think it is worthwhile to follow someone with a passion for Art, addicted to Second Life Art, and making a dream come true, not only for him, but also for all those artists, who are trying, not only to make the best shot in SL, but also to make a piece of art from that shot. Therefore we can say that all those artists in the Avatrait Gallery are really artists, and should be considered likewise in RL.
Track Hax his blog can be found on the Avatrait website, or with this link.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Second Life Bloggerparty

Should you, fellow and sister bloggers, not yet know about the bloggerparty, read the flyer, made by Vint, who will host, together with Codie, this time.
Theme is : "Robots"

VAT in Second Life, is America next?

Reading this article on Second Life Insider, I could not help myself, to post it on this blog.
There has been a lot of posts about the VAT for Europeans. Yet, it calmed down a bit, but now there is a rumour that the Americans will have to pay taxes as well. Or at least, they are wondering.
There is a person in world, Tax Anderton, who is part of the Chartered Institute of Taxation. He's available to residents who want to ask questions about taxes related to their in-world businesses.
Is that the person who would know?
According to the reporter it is all inevitable. So, at least they are expecting it. That is more than we, Europeans, could say, we were not warned.;))
But I refuse to make jokes about it. I think it is up to Linden lab to spread the news, and I am sure they will, after their experiences with the VAT in Europe.

I won't let you down.

Sometimes it takes a lot to keep finding the right information about Second Life to post on my blog. Sometimes I really don’t feel like doing it, but always have the urge to take care of my readers, and oblige myself to post an article.

Today is one of those days. Having a lot of work in RL, I don’t have the time to surf for a long time around the metaversed world, to find an eye catcher.
Nevertheless I could not get it over me of not writing something on my blog. As the style of this blog has changed over the months, I think I really need to add more personal stuff, personal experiences, along with the news or information I find on the web.

So, in the next period, you will be able to find again more stories, about me, about my friends, that is, if you would be interested in that of course.

I wrote already several articles about Eaglewolf Kubrick, a dear friend of mine. He created, together with four other friends, Doornroosje, an island where there was always fun, always someone to talk too, and a nice place to hang around too. (Doornroosje = Sleeping beauty)
This island has moved to a place where there were more prims, and thus, more possibilities for Eagle, as we call him, to build his castle again.
After some weeks, there were some complains from neighbours, having trouble with the noise, coming from Doornroosje’s place, but was, to be clear about that, not from any member of Doornroosje. So after a few days, Eagle gathered all his courage, and started all over again. Building from day to day at his new castle, where there was no fear that any of the neighbours would have to complain about.
Soon, after this magnificent idea of castle was almost finished, he had the urge of seeking new prims, as the ones on this island were almost eaten. He tried to persuade some neighbours to move, so he could buy their land, but did not succeed.
This castle of “Sleeping Beauty” (Doornroosje), is in fact the old one, but built upon a huge “ dungeon” where there is a place to party, as we used too. And above that, there is the castle, with a beautiful romantic garden with a fountain in the back.
But it took too long to build, and the people were gone, there was no one left to party anymore, despite all the efforts of Eagle. Only a few members were returning regularly.
But EagleWolf would not be EagleWolf, if he did not find new challenges……and he did.

To be continued…..

Thursday, October 18, 2007

How to ....... in Second Life













Two new official books from Second Life, about Second life to be published soon.

The first one is about making money in the metaverse.
Let's say you have a fashion boutique you're trying to establish. Or a great new toy shop. Or you're getting going with a prefabs business.
There are several important marketing methods you're going to want to pursue as you attempt to raise community awareness of your products and/or services. And Daniel Terdiman has written at length about those methods in the marketing chapter of his book, The Entrepreneur's Guide to Second Life, which will be published by Wiley next month.

The second one is written by Aimee Weber and is titled Creating your world: The official guide to advanced Content Creation for Second Life., and will be published next week.
This book is all about how to become better known in the Second Life community--and thus to boost awareness of your business.
What the author Aimee Weber said in an interview was this: "Volunteer for work, especially charity work. This will get your name associated with a reputable and respectable cause."
She explained herself later in a comment: "Well the problem I was addressing was how to land a contract or job when you don't have professional references. The content creator basically has three options:
1. Get the job without professional references. That's pretty difficult! If you stick with it long enough, somebody may take a chance on you which will give you the reference you need for the next job. But waiting and hoping is not a proactive move.
2. Work for free for a corporation. This will not only give you your reference but also provides you an "in" with a company that could lead to more lucrative corporate work and contracts.
3. Work for free for a charity. This gives you your reference while doing something good for others.
There are reasons why one would prefer to donate time to a corporation instead of a charity, but morality wouldn't be one of them.
People routinely write off charitable donations from their taxes, but that doesn't mean they donate their money FOR those write-offs. The truth is, charities really need our help and are happy to tell others when/if you have proven yourself to be conscientious and hard-working."

The reason why I post about these two books, is because it all has to do with marketing. This time not from a big company, but for yourself, as entrepreneur and blogger in Second Life. How to make business in the metaverse, how to get your name known etc... especially, when you have a shop, or you have something to sell.

Second Life Survival game - I am Legend

Based upon the forthcoming adaptation of Richard Matheson's classic science-fiction novel of the same name, the Second Life Survival Game offers fans an opportunity to go inside the world of the film and explore its physical universe while inhabiting a number of different characters.
Technically "The Omega Man" is a rip off from the 1964 Vincent Price movie '"The last Man on earth", which was based on the book "I am Legend". In fact they could call it the "The Omega Man- the remake".
The movie is coming to the theatres, but now there is also a game in Second Life, based upon Will Smith's movie "I am legend".

An incurable, unstoppable man-made virus is basically killing everybody and the people that are left fall into infected and uninfected people. The goal is to find a cure to this virus and survive. You can play as a Darkseeker, an infected human, or an infected dog, or you can play as an uninfected human of a police dog. You go in the game and you get to actually choose your factions, specifically the class. You can be a dog class or a human class.

After reading several blogs about the convention of San Jose, the conclusion is that Second Life is, with no doubt, the most attractive virtual world for all companies for their marketing. You can not deny, you can not look besides them, all the moves of well known companies, in this case Warner Bros., to be part of the virtual world, and to have them noticed with the help of Second Life.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

New challenges in my Second Life

It has been a while that I posted a story of my own, and I thought maybe now is a good time to write about some experiences on the grid.
I have been busy, very busy the past days. Working from some disappointments trough out in some new challenges, which makes life (second one) so much more interesting.
Sometimes life can be strange, one moment you have no expectancies, the other one, you don't know how to manage it all together. And all that can change in just a second.
This blog of mine has definitely his advantages for me. First of all, you meet new people, who are commenting this blog, writing their own blog, me, visiting their blog etc.
Secondly it is a way for me to express myself in another language, that is not my native one, and learn throughout the days, not only the language, but also the applications on the web, which comes with it. It is fun doing that, and I will keep on doing it as long as I am having fun looking for and posting articles.
What gave me another look on all this, is that I was privileged to meet new people lately, and somehow, made me feel good, getting to know these people.
Colleague bloggers, who have the same passion (writing on the blog), and are open to new ideas, that is the only thing what it takes for me to get a new fresh breath in Second Life.
You already could guess it, yes....I am working on a project together with another fellow blogger, and this experience alone, is worthwhile to keep on doing the things that I do.
We have only met each other recently, but I know now, from the few conversations we had, that we can work something out, that will give a new aspect to my work in Second Life, and of course not only mine.
Now, I can only say, wait and see, as I will post about it when it is the time for it. It is still in an early stage and still needs a lot of work and communication to finalize it.

Controlling RL devices in Second Life

Daden Limited is a virtual worlds agency working in Second Life and other virtual worlds. Their aim is to help people engage with their audience using some of the most interesting technologies around today. They already developed the aircraft tracking system in SL, and now they are working on a system in Second Life that can control your RL devices.
"This is a work in progress. We’re using libsecondlife to detect activity in SL and then drive a USB break-out-box, so that we can control (and read from) RL devices. Here we just see a switch in SL controlling one of the LEDs on the USB interface."

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Did you know...about the red beacon of confusion

You have certainly seen it on your screen in Second Life, the red beacon that points to a certain location. Well, if it bothers you, you can easily make it disappear.
When you visit a location a vertical red beacon appears nearby, along with a red arrow that follows you around until you walk through the beacon to make it disappear. However, sometimes the beacon is in a place where you can't walk through it, and sometimes the red arrow follows you when you teleport to a new location.
Here is the simple way to take care of this problem.
When you arrive at a location and there is a red arrow trying to point you to the red beacon, just open your main map window to show your current location. You will also see the red circle of the beacon and the yellow circle that represents you. Then just click on the yellow circle and the beacon will shift to your avatar's position and either disappear or be very close so you can walk through it and get rid of it.

Monday, October 15, 2007

A Travel Guide for Virtual Bruges

You all now by now Bruges in Second Life, thanks to the articles and pictures on my and other blogs. As this is a piece of art in the virtual world, and a must to be seen, Louis Platini, has made a hud to visit the place.
LouisPlatini.com is a metaverse content provider that helps companies to have a successful
presentation in Virtual Worlds. Recently, Virtual Bruges was constructed which is one of the
more popular destinations in Second Life for Virtual Tourism, shopping and Live Music Events.
Read the press release below.
An example of Augmented Virtuality

Second Life, 15 October 2007. The Travel Guide for Virtual Bruges is now available.
Several kiosks are placed at different locations in Virtual Bruges that give away the guide for free to the visitors. The guide contains facts about “real‐life” (RL) Bruges houses such as architecture, shopping and restaurant information.

To provide information about the reconstruction of Bruges, Belgium in Second Life, we didn’t choose to place boards near the houses that would hinder the view, but have developed a HUD that show information about the houses the avatar is seeing.

The HUD calculates at each moment to position at which the avatar is looking at and retrieves all information from a remote database. This can be compared to a RL tourist that flips through the pages of a travel guide when looking at a particular building or monument. All information is personalized for each tourist, e.g. the tourist standing beside you might be looking at something else and might consult other pages from his own guide. The same situation is possible with a HUD in Second Life; two avatars standing side by side, but looking at another building will retrieve different facts.

Together with the launch of the Travel Guide HUD, a website is available with more in‐depth information about (Virtual) Bruges at http://www.virtual‐bruges.be. The website contains more information about RL and SL Bruges, including the weekly events that are organized in Virtual Bruges.
More information about the Travel Guide HUD and underlying technology is available at http://www.louisplatini.com (A white paper is available in which more information is given about this Augmented Virtuality Application). For questions you can contact Louis Platini in‐world or at Louis.Platini@gmail.com

Sunday, October 14, 2007

PINK FOR LIFE

Press release

In a sequel of last year's operation "100 women for life" which gathered 126 famous women in favor of breast cancer fight, the cancerology Institute, Gustave Roussy, first European research center in cancer research, launched in October 2007 : "Pink For Life". This operation was organized to raise awareness about breast cancer, during Pink October, international month for the fight against breast cancer.


October 9 and 10, 2007 on the Champs Elysees (Paris) - Hotel Dassault-Artcurial, has been organized an exhibition followed by an auction of pink items. Items were donated by famous fashion designers and luxury brands.


ConceptSL organized the Second Life side of this event :

— The staff of ConceptSL has duplicated several real-life exposed items in Second Life. The virtual objects were exposed in the exhibition hall of our Second life island : Elyseum customized in pink for the operation from October 1st to 10th.

— The Second Life community has also contributed : 22 RL and SL designers have donated over 40 pink objects for the SL exhibition.

— SL Volunteers were guiding visitors showing creations and telling their stories during the 10 days.

— Oct. 9th and 10th, during the RL exhibition in Paris, 11 musicians have organized a 20 hours live concert (RL/SL) over the two days.

There as been no less than 42 objects that have been sold : (glasses, dresses, furnitures, jewels, etc.). Throughout the 10 days we have had around 950 visitors (420 unique avatars - 360 during the two days of the concert) ! With around 80 avatars at the same time on Elysuem.

Although it was organized to raise awareness about breast cancer, the various items purchases and donations brougth over 65,000 L$.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

All by myself in Second Life

Sector 13 - City of Abaddon



Yesterday I had some disappointments in Second Life, and was talking about it to a friend of mine. As you all already know, you can have that in your second life too, those moments that you don't know if all makes sense.
But I don't want to write about these things on this blog, I want to show new things , new pictures, all new experiments that I encounter.
So, this friend invited me to a place, where, and you will not believe it, where there was no one else, just the two of us. Amazing!
And what is more, this place was magnificent.
These last days , I discover new SIM's on Second life, who are worth to visit more than once.
The sim he took me, Sector 13 - City of Abaddon, was build with such a detail. Never seen like it before, although the Cannery Rezzable is also a similar place.
In one corner you could find a small Chinese village, with market place, even the wooden beams had these Chinese description on them. At the other side it was an abandoned city, with cars crashed, as if an atomic bomb had just fallen.
Check the other pictures in my flickr stream, as usual.

Friday, October 12, 2007

What is a Music URL and how to set it on your land?

When you have your own land in Second Life, and you have all the rights on that land, you can easily set your own music.
In the pie menu, which you find by right clicking on the land, you will see “About land”, and than under “Media” the “Music URL”.
But what is that?

According the Wikipedia:
Uniform Resource Locator (URL) formerly known as Universal Resource Locator, is a technical, Web-related term used in two distinct meanings:

  • In popular usage, including many technical documents, it is a synonym for Uniform Resource Identifier (URI);
  • Strictly, the idea of a uniform syntax for global identifiers of network-retrievable documents was the core idea of the World Wide Web. In the early times, these identifiers were variously called "document names", "Web addresses" and "Uniform Resource Locators". These names were misleading, however, because not all identifiers were locators, and even for those that were, this was not their defining characteristic. Nevertheless, by the time the RFC 1630 formally defined the term "URI" as a generic term best suited to the concept, the term "URL" had gained widespread popularity, which has continued to this day

In this case the URL is a music URL, which can be found on the Internet, and allows you to choose from a range of music channels, radio channels, or even your own URL.
When you search on the Internet for music URL’s , you will find thousands of addresses, which you can download and put in your music stream on the grid. The only necessity is that you need the right of the land that you own.
You can also read the post on the official Linden blog about “How to” manage the pie menu of your land.
Just download one of next URL’s and put them in your music stream. It should be that simple.

Top 40 pop rock : http://www.977music.com/
Soft smooth jazz : http://www.sky.fm/smoothjazz/
Ambient chill : http://somafm.com/
Top 40 dance pop rock : http://www.frequence3.fr/
Hip Hop Urban rap : http://www.hot108.com/
Vocal Trance dance pop : http://www.di.fm/
80’s pop rock oldies : http://www.sky.fm/
Alternative pop rock : http://www.idobiradio.com/
Dance Trance Techno House : http://www.pulsradio.com/
Smooth jazz : http://www.smoothjazz.com/

UPDATE: Apparently it is not that simple, according to Minto Gamba. He linked a pretty good explanation in the comments, but you will be able to find it also here.

UPDATE 2 (01-26-08): If it is still not clear to you, watch the explanation of Alexander Burgess, on his blog. As he is DJ in Second Life, he knows what he is talking about.;)

Nanotechnology in Second Life

"Nanotechnology refers broadly to a field of applied science and technology whose unifying theme is the control of matter on the atomic and molecular level in scales smaller than 1 micrometre, normally 1 to 100 nanometers, and the fabrication of devices within that size range. Examples of nanotechnology in modern use are the manufacture of polymers based on molecular structure, and the design of computer chip layouts based on surface science. Despite the great promise of numerous nanotechnologies such as quantum dots and nanotubes, real commercial applications have mainly used the advantages of colloidal nanoparticles in bulk form, such as suntan lotion, cosmetics, protective coatings, and stain resistant clothing." So far from the Wikipedia.

Nanotechnology Island has launched in Second Life with the goal to establish a place for the Nano Science and Technology communities to come together and to bring key ideas and research into public discussion.
Nanoscience and technology like virtual worlds are frequently cited as “disruptive” technologies. These fields should evolve in relationships between scientists, engineers, policymakers and regulators in a global setting with the opportunity for public debate and engagement.

Dave Taylor, of the National Physical Laboratory (in the UK), explains that some of the key objectives are to:
provide resources to nanotechnology-related individuals and organizations to help them get started in SL: mentoring, technical help, access to shared land and facilities, and subsidised SL development. This last part means that NPL will help cover the costs of developers for SL projects that are approved for display on Nanotechnology island.

I know this article will only interest few people who reads this blog, but what is interesting is that we see more and more companies , developers, sciences, coming into Second Life, finding the basics to develop and to grow in a virtual environment.
For me, it is not the content of this article, which is so important, rather than the news that this science is having interests in the virtual world to do some research through this medium.
And that is keeping my curiosity alive, to find new aspects coming into Second Life, and to see the virtual world grow, and be part of it, as one of the first to know what new is coming up, thanks to our Second Life, which than becomes again our first life.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Happy Birthday!!!


My Second Life good friend and colleague blogger, Pieter Bosch, from secondlifecrew.be, has his birthday in RL today. We had a small celebration at my place last night. Unfortunately, it was Pieter himself, who told us only last night that it would be his birthday today, so we did not have the opportunity to put something together. But as a day is lasting 24 hours.......
Pieter, congratulations!!!!

IBM and Linden Lab Launch Collaboration to Further Advance the 3D Internet

From IBM press release
As more enterprises and consumers explore the 3D Internet, the ecosystem of virtual world hosts, application providers, and IT vendors need to offer a variety of standards-based solutions in order to meet end user requirements. To support this
, IBM and Linden Lab, the operator of Second Life, are committed to exploring the interoperability of virtual world platforms and technologies, and plan to work with industry-wide efforts to further expand the capabilities of virtual worlds.
IBM and Linden Lab plan to work together on issues concerning the integration of virtual worlds with the current Web; driving security-rich transactions of virtual goods and services; working with the industry to enable interoperability between various virtual worlds; and building more stability and high quality of service into virtual world platforms. These are expected to be key characteristics facing organizations which want to take advantage of virtual worlds for commerce, collaboration, education and other business applications.

More specifically, IBM and Linden Lab plan to collaborate on:

  • "Universal" Avatars: Exploring technology and standards for users of the 3D Internet to seamlessly travel between different virtual worlds. Users could maintain the same “avatar” name, appearance and other important attributes (digital assets, identity certificates, and more) for multiple worlds. The adoption of a universal “avatar” and associated services are a possible first step toward the creation of a truly interoperable 3D Internet.
  • Security-rich Transactions: Collaborating on the requirements for standards-based software designed to enable the security-rich exchange of assets in and across virtual worlds. This could allow users to perform purchases or sales with other people in virtual worlds for digital assets including 3D models, music, and media, in an environment with robust security and reliability features.
  • Platform stability: Making interfaces easier to use in order to accelerate user adoption, deliver faster response times for real-world interactions and provide for high-volume business use.
  • Integration with existing Web and business processes: Allowing current business applications and data repositories – regardless of their source – to function in virtual worlds is anticipated to help enable widespread adoption and rapid dissemination of business capabilities for the 3D Internet.
Open standards for interoperability with the current Web: Open source development of interoperable formats and protocols. Open standards in this area are expected to allow virtual worlds to connect together so that users can cross from one world to another, just like they can go from one web page to another on the Internet today.

This would be a giant step in virtual world, to my opinion, to have one avatar, and have the possibility to enter and travel with that same avatar other virtual worlds, without having the need to adjust the appearance.
The effort would first focus on studying situations where the ability to travel between virtual worlds is most in demand. The nuts and bolts of how to make different software work together will come later.
IBM and Linden announced the partnership ahead of a virtual worlds conference that starts in San Jose, California on Wednesday and is expected to discuss the formation of industry standards and other issues. Most participants are start-ups but the event has also attracted services and hardware heavyweights like IBM and Cisco , as well as software and entertainment giants Microsoft and Sony.

The event itself is seen as something of a coming-of-age milestone for an industry that is starting to be taken seriously as a provider of useful business tools and not just a quirky offshoot of the video game sector.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

1.000.000 Linden Dollar Design Contest in Second Life

In the next months visitors of the Design Me island can enter their furniture design and have a shot at one million Linden Dollars!
All residents can take part to the contest, even beginners, as there is a special building where you can find instruction video's, free objects and examples to design your own chair, table or lamp.
All visitors can vote weekly for the design of the contestants. The weekly winners have the possibility to win one million Linden Dollars in the final on November 1st!!
What are you waiting for?

Endemol, global leader in television and other audiovisual entertainment in RL, has now taken the option to further research and develop the possibilities of virtual worlds. They think this tool can be attractive to let consumers interact with their brand.
More and more, we see companies moving into the virtual world. It is not yet a boom effect, but will sure have his influences in the development of the virtual worlds.

New pictures of the Crimson Shadow Rezzable



I took some new pictures of the Crimson Shadow Rezzable in Second Life, yet I did not had the time to explore the SIM. So I need to get back there in a while. More picture to come then.
Check out the set in my flickr stream.

Another theme at The Spin Lounge

Join us at the Spin Lounge this Sunday for another funky evening in Second Life.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Linden Lab admits

"Linden Lab has made more mistakes about Second Life than anyone else ever has.

That shouldn't be a startling admission: When you are the one developing a product or service, you have more opportunities to make both right and wrong decisions about what you’re making. This is probably true about any complex product offering - the maker makes more mistakes than anyone else because no one else has so many chances to screw things up! What’s different about Linden Lab is that this place is more transparent about its operations than any other private company." This is from the official blog....

It is the first time that I see Linden Lab admits of making mistakes, and realizing that the residents of the grid, are indeed a great help for them, to improve Second Life. In other words, they need us, we need them!!

But to be honest, how did they work in the past? Very poor, we must say. Everyone will agree that communication is a main problem at Linden Lab. Obvious they want to do something about that, and that is good news.

But if they are saying "...that this place is more transparent about its operations...", than I have to say, it is good when you are planning this, but do not tell us that it was like that in the past, as I think that we should have known a long time ago what Linden Lab's plans were with the VAT, the gambling issue.....where we all have blogged about many times, but had the feeling they were not listening at all.

Let us keep an open and positive mind, and see what such a message can lead to.

As usual you will read the pro's and contra's, but, do we like Second Life or not? When the answer is positive, I think we should appreciate all the efforts Linden lab is planning to make, and has made. As, if it wasn't for them, I would have never known my new friends in SL. I hope they are realizing that with this message, they are saying, that they are learning from the past and will inform us in time what is going to happen in the future (when does Windlight come back?;)))

Born as a female avatar in Second Life

Several months ago I read an article about a female avatar coming into Second Life. I saved that article, because I thought it was written in a funny way, a nice perspective on how and what a female avatar can experience when first coming to the grid. And now, I was cleaning up my files a bit, and stumbled on this article. I translated it, and think it is interesting to share.
It is about a Dutch girl, originally written by a Dutch girl, who is coming on the grid, not knowing what to do, and how to do things at first.

"In Second life you are born as a type of dummy, with insipid confection clothing and hair as the average mother in law has. You can shape your avatar, legs longer/shorter, look larger/smaller, buttocks more thickly/thinner, etc., but nevertheless you remain a grey mouse, a type of factory implementation of yourself.

Therefore I teleported myself to a small shopping street, and I treat myself on an entirely new look. I redeem a splendid slightly tainted skin, a sumptuous coupe, radiating blue eyes and cool “hud”, a complete attitude type with among other things a sexy walk. Furthermore I purchased the basic clothing. A couple of nail trousers, a couple of shirts, an elegant skirt, a couple of high heals and a bikini.

To dress yourself is easier said than done. If I click with my right mouse button on “wear” on my jeans, I have suddenly a box on my head. Hmm. I look around if nobody sees me, where the box swerves tremendously in the space, nearly hitting the face of an other avatar, called Jesee. It seems, you need to unpack the new trousers, before wearing them. Jesee was already longer in Second life, and explained to me patiently how to get these things on.

But following his indications, I found myself suddenly totally naked. I was feeling uncomfortably. My hands became slowly clammy whereas I covered myself clicking my mouse button. Rapidly trousers. O wait, first underwear of course. Not that there is much to be seen, because I still looked as a dummy. But nevertheless. I felt myself like a teenager, uncomfortably, and most of all, completely nude.

After some awkward trials, I am dressed. You always have to pay for something, also in Second life, it proves to be. Jesee finds that I have, however, a nice ass, and believe that he has deserved a thank you. Resolutely he steps to a blue ball a bit further. “Now you must click with your right mouse button on that pink ball”, he said. For I could realize what was happening, he was standing with his trousers on his knees and I gave, as a professional prostitute a blowjob. “Pardon?!” I said. (talking with your mouth full is no problem in Second life). “Mmmm” Jesee answered. “Beat it!” I thought, and I teleported myself to Amsterdam.

AIk country on Amsterdam CS.

Still a little bit confused, that I was just standing there.

I am a new born, felt myself as a teenager already after half an hour, but your life experience will not go that fast here.

How to make friends here? It is quiet busy, strange birds fly by, beautiful women waggled along and tough men walked by. Hands were moving very quick on an imaginary keyboard. Some are standing with bowed head and their poor slack along their body. “Away “it said in the balloon above their head. Is it ok here to address yourself to someone? Or is that not properly? Very rapidly this problem would solve itself.

Baston landed on my head. “Oops, sorry”, he excused himself.

Baston has a mysterious appearance, brown hair with white locks of hair, a tainted skin, detonation-blue eyes and super-sharp jaw line. Baston is an elder in Second Life-terms, he has been around here for already two years and knows the most beautiful places. His favorite place is between the moon and the stars, and in a wink we fly to it.

From a large flat platform we had a nice view on the universe. Underneath we could see clearly a light ball with spots on it : Mother Earth. It was turning slowly around. O yes, it is true, real life also continues.

Back in Real life, I cycled along the streets in Amsterdam to the central station.

It is quiet busy on the square, strange birds fly by, beautiful women waggled along and tough men walked by. I can see in my mind, avatars landing on other men’s head.. In fact I would not be surprised when someone should suddenly start typing in the air. I see blue and pink balls in the corner, where you can kiss secretly. Look! There is someone running with a box on his head! Certainly a newbie. And I see myself, Julie, my arms slacked down, and a small text balloon above my head:” Away”"

Monday, October 8, 2007

Praga Kahn in Second Life

Sunday afternoon, there was a very special event going on , at the Strawberry Island in Second Life.
After the two previous sold out tours “The next Dimension” en “Code Red”, Praga Khan launches, from October 25th, their third innovative show “Frame By Frame, "Where Art meets Technology”, and is to be seen till December.
Next to the integration of different musical and artistic performances, several innovative technologies will be used in their shows such as: intelligent clothing, innovative 3D projections, avatars, virtual worlds, etc...
And that is where SL comes in.....

The Belgian group Praga Kahn, was preparing their tour, with some video clips taken in the virtual world. The invite for this event came rather late, otherwise I would surely have attend this occasion, but according to secondlifecrew.be it was a success.

During their show, the audience will be able to see and meet the virtual world on a screen, with snapshots and clips, taking in Second Life.
Singer of the group, Maurice Engelen, was of course present at this happening, with his avatar, and gave some explanation, while the technicians were making the takes for the clip.
The whole happening took about one hour, and we are curious to see how the results will be with our friends avatars in the picture.;))
Let's hope they will put the clip on their website.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Over the edge

I have a strong feeling and thought that I have to quit Second Life.
Yesterday evening was supposed to be another fun moment on the grid, but it turned out in a world of doubt and uncertainty, not to mention anger.
The irony is that I wrote about it in my previous post, that my main goal are friends. Well, I found out that SL is even worse as RL.
I don't need it here. Getting accused by so called friends, while there is no reason too, just because this" friend" has a quarrel with another friend. Pffft, I think they should ban "childplay";), let's grow up people. What do they seek in here? Why accusing people of something, they even don't know anything about? I will save you the details.;)
And at the end of the evening, I got the message that another friend is in risk of being accused by the Lindens of something that has never occurred.
What is the meaning of all this? I am getting really angry, by reading all this stuff.
I don't need that in Second Life, that is over the edge.

PS. I am not leaving right now, I still love the things I do in SL....but......without this.

Friday, October 5, 2007

Linden Lab settles lawsuit

According a blogpost, Linden lab has reached a settlement with Marc Bragg, who sued the company for having terminated his account, with the loss of virtual business as a result of that.
I had a few months ago already a blogpost about this lawsuit, that started back in 2006.

"Linden Research, Inc., Philip Rosedale, and Marc Bragg have agreed to settle the “Bragg v. Linden and Rosedale” lawsuit currently pending in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. The parties agree that there were unfortunate disagreements and miscommunications regarding the conduct and behavior by both sides and are pleased to report that Mr. Bragg’s “Marc Woebegone” account, privileges and responsibilities to the Second Life community have been restored. For the benefit of the Second Life community, the Parties have mutually agreed that the terms of their resolution shall remain confidential. The Parties ask that this confidentiality be respected. "thus the Linden blog.

As I also wrote in other articles, the main reason for discussions in Second Life always appears to be miscommunications.
With this article, I also want to ask all of you, first try to talk things over, before getting angry, blocking friends, ending relationships etc. because most of the time it was just a misunderstanding or interpretation. We are typing most of the time, and can not express our feelings in typing words. Now with Voice this should resolve a great deal.
Second Life has to be fun, there is already enough trouble going on in RL.

Beautiful SIM in Second life.




I took these pictures of Veyron Supercharge at the Crimson Shadow Rezzable. I did not check the whole sim out, but it seems worthwhile to get back there. I only was there for half an hour to do this shoot at the request of Veyron. The original pictures were submitted to Veyron for a contest, without post processing.
These snapshots, in this blog and on my flickr stream, have just a small adjustment in brightness and Gaussian blur.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Another Marketing move in Second life: Evian's skin Giveaway

Evian, the French mineral-water people, are conducting a pretty good marketing initiative in Second Life which shows the company, or at least its ad agency, understands how to promote effectively to residents. Basically, it’s a RL-SL match-up with low overhead for the RL brand and a good traffic booster for the SL company.

Marketing responsible Jeff Caswell :” Evian always had its hand on the pulse of what’s hot. With build-it-yourself virtual worlds, fantasy lands and video games increasing in popularity, we felt that Second Life was a fitting platform for Evian to make its virtual debut. The initiative puts an “unreal” twist on Evian’s 2007 ad campaign tagline: “The most important body of water is your own. Fill with care.”

They have asked RealSKIN to make 6 free avatars skins and shapes, male and female, Caucasian, Asian and black, and are distributed at next locations:

This is again a step into Second Life from a major company with a remarkable strategic and marketing move.
Do you remember your first day to arrive on the grid? How did you look, what was the first thing you wanted to change? That was that awful newbie look, isn't it?
Well now, and the subscribers to SL are still growing, newbies have the chance to have a pretty neat skin and shape to explore the grid.
If this is a profit making marketing move or not, I will leave that to the specialists, but at least you can say that the entrance was noticed and that thousands of newbies will have there possibility to have an upgrade of their skin, without making extra costs in the very beginning of their second life.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Friends online

"Friends Online is temporarily disabled due to technical difficulties. We'll re-enable it as soon as possible. Thanks for your patience."

Have you tried lately, to see who is actually on the grid, through the official site of Second Life ?
Then you must have noticed that that feature has been disabled for several days now.
It was handy to check, if the friendlists did not work online, if your friends were there or not. But now....even when you are off the grid, you have not all the abilities, you once had before.

Should we have an update for that as well? Is our account still accurate?

And yet, we still keep returning to our beloved grid. How come? What is it, that makes Second Life so attractive, so addictive?

Its must be a "goldmine" to the creators and inworld business, having us, so addictive to a "game", that has his daily, not weekly, problems to solve.;))

VAT applies to all payments to Linden Lab for European residents.

There have been some discussions lately around the VAT that European residents have to pay to Linden. I did not want to put it on my blog at first, because there were so many Second Life blogs already commenting this news. But reading some of the comments, I found it interested to put someone in the spotlight, just because of her insight on various subjects.

Veronique Kaminski, has commented some articles of mine, but now I was reading Vint Falken’s blog on this specific topic, and thought these comments should not stay in the shadow of comments, but should be a main article, knowing that she doesn’t have a blog to express herself. I hope she will forgive me…

Mostly, she was responding on another comment, but the total view of this topic, is quiet correct how we, Europeans, feel about this matter. It is certainly not an attack against Linden Lab, it is just an observation and a way of expressing how we see things from the other side of the ocean.

“I am not begging for a price reduction for Europeans here.. just saying that if LL wants to comply with the European law, they should take care about complying with ALL laws.. and state how much their service will cost us, VAT included.
One is supposed to assume that the announced price includes it.
And jurisdiction tends to protect the small ignorant consumer..(they are allowed btw to show ADDITIONALY how much it costs when you can recuperate VAT, but only in a non-confusing way… clearly stating that it is without VAT, and, e.g. not in bigger sized characters then the full price)

If the Lindens want to sell something to me, a European customer due to VAT, they must include the VAT in the price they are charging me.
But, also the product must be advertised stating the full price.I am not saying that I only want to pay 82.6. But if a seller tells me that his product costs 100, I only have to pay 100, and I only will pay 100.
The seller is responsible for deducting the VAT from the sales price and pass it to the state. It is a tax on the added value. And it aren’t the consumers who add value to the base materials.
Any company therefore includes the 21% BEFORE announcing the price to his customer.
(unless, as car salesmen sometimes tend to do for promotional reasons, the seller takes the cost of the VAT upon them..)
Now this VAT doesn’t exist since yesterday, nor since 2003.
Therefore, since LL always told that the product costed 100, and they never told that they paid the VAT for us as a promotional gift, we always HAD to assume that VAT was included. Its not up to the domestic consumer to verify this.
(its a bit like in criminal law.. your are innocent until proven the contrary)

So, coming up with this now, it leaves people here surprised.. and wondering:

*Was LL all these 4 years tax-evading? If you do that as a private person and you are caught, you get fined..

*Was LL that ignorant? Not knowing that for doing business in Europe they had to count with VAT?? Really?? an American company, the country where they know all about doing business?? Having hundreds of thousands subscribers in Europe (not all paying, I know..) I guess that, before entering a market, one does do some research, don’t you? Especially if you are offering a product where one of the basics is about commerce..

*Or is this just a way of raising the bill??

Anyway.. being in favor or not of all the VAT taxes, fact is that it isn’t a correct way to treat your customers.
Suddenly start charging some extra costs on the excuse of applying the law.. while, according to the same law, you were already charging these costs.

Now, besides the fact that this practically will mean that most EU residents will have to pay more for playing the “game”,
I wonder what the effects will be now VAT is introduced in SL.

Because, next statement at first sight sounds fine :

“Transactions in L$ between individual Residents are not subject to VAT”

and it is true, from the LL point of view. LL has nothing to do with the transactions between the residents, or between a SL shop and its customers. So it is logical LL doesn’t have to take care about the VAT issue for this transactions..

But, fully applying VAT legislation, and taking in consideration that many businesses, be it shops, rentals or even prostitution, are registered as companies and convert the Lindens back into real money.. should they (the small or big businesses) also start charging VAT to the EU customers?
Applying different prices if the dress is bought by a EU resident or a Mexican? And maintaining the bookkeeping that goes with it??
Theoretically, in that case, it will even affect the rental business of our beloved PN, who‘ll have to charge some of her customers extra in order to maintain our “socialist” systems..
Oh irony of life…”

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

New Bloggers

I am glad to say that I have add two new bloggers on my favorite links.
Sand Posthorn, with her blog Lost in-world & Staggering Nekos, has a nice view on the daily happenings in Second life. She has a talent of writing the right words and sentences, in short stories, which makes it interesting to read. Thanks Sand, for joining the blogworld.
The second one is Tymmerie Thorne, with her blog Girl Wonder Speaks. Her stories about her whereabouts in Second Life are most amusing. She is looking for a real job to make some Lindens (who's not?;)) in SL, and willing to go far...
But the main reason why I picked her site to put in my favorite list is because she has described my blog just as it is: Photos & Insightful commentary. Maybe I should take this description and put it in the header of my blog. Thank you Tymmerie.;))

The Spin Lounge

A view of the re-opening of the Spin Lounge last Sunday in Second Life.

Oops, Linden Labs did it again!

What was supposed to be a nice evening among friends, became again a struggle for staying on the grid, pffft.
After I was logged in, and was having a chat with some of my friends, we received a message that our sim was closing down within 5 minutes.
With the experience we had, nothing to fear, just go to another sim, and everything should be solved. Nothing was less true.
After a couple of minutes, the message of 3 minutes left, showed up. We were joking, and saying who is staying here the longest….?
But I did not wait till the last minute, I was playing save, and tp’d myself to my home. I had still the message on my screen of the last 3 minutes, that I deleted, and what did I see underneath that? Another message saying we still had 30 seconds to leave the sim. Haha, not with me, I thought, I was safely back at my place.
But what happened…….exactly, we were thrown off of Second Life. Apparently Linden labs were having a master clean up, with all sims at the same time.

Reading in the meanwhile on the official blog: “The rolling restart is a little more aggressively scheduled this time than in times past. Logins for some residents may be slow until the restarts are finished. Also, the nifty trick of wave-jumping the restarts by TPing to the Northwest is unfortunately no longer supported - the restart order is no longer dependent upon map location. In exchange for this inconvenience, the restart should be finished much sooner.”

This was of course the best timing to do that, for the Europeans, at approximate 22.00 hrs.. Probably, Second life is meant to be amusing only for Americans. No taxes, no problems with rolling restart, as it happens in the middle of the day, when everybody is at work..;))

After this inconvenience, I was trying to log in again, but you can guess what happened. Exactly, …..nothing. I rebooted my whole system, and tried again. Sometimes the screen was hanging, without doing anything, another time I got the message that the servers were not available, or not connectable.

It took me almost half an hour to get back on the grid, but by then, my evening was almost finished. Perhaps I was better stayed in my seat before the television, and fall a sleep in the middle of a movie ;))