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Archive for the ‘Mainland’ Category

Now available on the web – our latest episode, as explore Bay City, a mainland community in Second Life just celebrating its fifth birthday – and which is the result of an ongoing and unusual collaboration between residents and Linden Lab.

In the compant of long-term residents Marianne McCann and Ever Dreamscape, we visit some fascinating builds – including the spooky Falmouth Hotel, the wonderfully retro funfair, the Aquarium and, of course, the offices of the Bay City Post – as well as stopping off at the Community Center and a great themed diner!

Bay City, photograph by Wildstar Beaumont

Bay City, photograph by Wildstar Beaumont

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Bay City, photograph by Wildstar Beaumont

Bay City, photograph by Wildstar Beaumont

Join us at 2pm SLT today, Monday 20th May, for the new episode of Designing Worlds at our studio in Garden of Dreams, as we set off to explore the retro world of Bay City, a mainland community in Second Life just celebrating its fifth birthday – and which is the result of an ongoing and unusual collaboration between residents and Linden Lab.

Although on the map Bay City may look like an island, it is actually a very special area of themed mainland, and we’ll be learning all about this from long-time (and very active) residents, Marianne McCann and Ever Dreamscape (who is editor of the Bay City’s own newspaper, the Bay City Post).

Bay City Funfair, photograph by Wildstar Beaumont

Bay City Funfair, photograph by Wildstar Beaumont

We’ll also be visiting some fascinating builds – including the spooky Falmouth Hotel, the wonderfully retro funfair, the Aquarium and, of course, the offices of the Bay City Post – as well as stopping off at the Community Center and a great themed diner!

Bay City Community Center, photograph by Wildstar Beaumont

Bay City Community Center, photograph by Wildstar Beaumont

So if you’re in to Bay City, retro or Art Deco style and strong communities … this is definitely the show for you! So come and watch the show at 2pm!

Or – if you can’t attend in person – tune in at 2pm SLT on Monday for the live show on http://treet.tv/live – or catch it later in the week on our shows page on the Treet.tv web site at http://treet.tv/shows/designingworlds – our very own version of the iPlayer!

Bay City Community Center, photograph by Wildstar Beaumont

Bay City, photograph by Wildstar Beaumont

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Bay City Funfair

Bay City Funfair

As you’ll know (specially if you read this blog regularly!), Bay City turned five yesterday, and today’s Designing Worlds show will be visiting Bay City to explore something of its community, its history, its builds … and its continuing partnership with Linden Lab and its moles – as can be seen here in the beautiful retro funfair.

There is – for Europeans – something interesting about the design imperative of Bay City – a reflection that there was a time, relatively recently, when culture was not global, or homogeneous, and a suignificant art movement could take a decade to achieve prominence (and popularity) on different sides of the Atlantic.  We’ll be talking about that on today’s show.

But, for the moment, let’s do a jigsaw!

Click to Mix and Solve

Bay City Funfair, photograph by Wildstar Beaumont

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Catch up with your Prim Perfect jigsaws (showing images of Second Life and other virtual worlds).

If you’d like to submit a photo of your own to feature as a jigsaw, send it to the Prim Perfect Flickr Group. It should be sized 800w x 600h, or else it will need to be re-sized.

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The Bridge to Chamonix City

The Bridge to Chamonix City

I found myself taking a look at Chamonix City, the six sims supplied to the Global Online Hockey Association (GOHA) as part of a post I am currently planning. While there, I wanted to take a picture. MMy computer is a very good one, with a pretty good graphics card, but oit struggles with fancy settings, and I usually crash if I try tweaking the draw distance, and certainly if I add anything fancy like shadows.

So I thought I’d experiment with the new Firestorm Photo Tools. And, low and behold, it let me whack up the draw distance and play with shadows, depth of field and windlight to my heart’s content. Whether it was a fluke of whether Firestorm can deliover better graphics through its own tools, only time wil;l tell.

For today, enjoy the jigsaw!

Click to Mix and Solve

The Bridge to Chamonix City

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Catch up with your Prim Perfect jigsaws (showing images of Second Life and other virtual worlds).

If you’d like to submit a photo of your own to feature as a jigsaw, send it to the Prim Perfect Flickr Group. It should be sized 800w x 600h, or else it will need to be re-sized.

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Hotel Chelsea

Hotel Chelsea

News reached me today from Crap Mariner of the closure of one of the most iconic builds on the mainland, the Hotel Chelsea, which we featured in a Designing Worlds show last season, is closing.

Mykal Skall, the creator of the Hotel district, contacted his group to explain:

It is with heavy heart that I contact you today, to let you know that the Virtual Hotel Chelsea is shutting its doors.

Three years ago this may we departed on this adventure with you our Bohemian friends and supporters.  It was a different time in the RL and SL economy, and a different mindset in the customer service department of Linden Labs.

We quickly became friends with RL residents of the RL Hotel and became advocates on their behalf in the virtual world.

We relished our 15 minutes of fame as the New York Times picked up our story and welcomed thousands of new visitors as Linden Labs made us its #1 “Hot Spot”.

We became a family, a dysfunctional one at times, but one who cared about each other no matter what.

We expanded, downsized, then expanded again.

We hosted hundreds of the greatest artists, musicians, and poets in SL and RL, and even broadcast from the RL Hotel to the SL Hotel, a first in the history of either landmark.

We felt the pain of our family in the RL Hotel as it became clear that no manner of hoping, praying, or wishing, was going to “Bring Back the Bards” and we cried as the doors were shut and the rooms gutted.

We hoped to stay true to the spirit of the heyday of the real hotel, to preserve it even if only in a virtual world.

The crowd we attracted mirrored the creatives and quirky that the made the RL hotel the mecca of bohemia.

As time went on, tips went down, we had to lower rent to keep tenants, and unfortunately had to start paying our musicians less, but we insisted on paying them something even if it wasn’t much.

We also set ourselves apart from other SL venues in that we only allowed “live” music, no pre-recorded background music, this made us a haven for the best singer/songwriters in SL.

Unfortunately, for quite a while we have been losing money, but this was never about money, so we kept running.  Then we lost some donors to our group land and I went to LL tech support to see what we needed to do, I was repeatedly told that this wasn’t an issue (I kept a transcript btw).

Then a few weeks ago we were contacted by Guy Linden who said that we needed to come into compliance with our group land.  Even though I proved that I (was) proactive and was given “wrong” information by LL tech support, this didn’t make a difference.

As a temporary “bandaid” I bought more land in Lanestris to give us some time to figure out what to do.  Of course this made my tier skyrocket and made an already losing venture lose more.

I’ve tried to move things around, scale it down, etc.  But I can’t find a way that I can afford to continue to give the build what it needs.  And quite frankly, I have enough stressers in RL, that something needs to give and unfortunately this is one of them.

I have been blessed along this journey by many amazing individuals, and I cannot even begin to thank each and every one of you, but I have to thank my partner in this venture, enola Vaher, without whom this would have shut down years ago.  When my RL took me away from here for months at a time, she kept everything going, I may have built the skeleton of the Chelsea, but she was the soul that made it what it was.  And for very little compensation.  Thank you enola.

To may other staff members throughout the years, Donna, Perk, Cinn… thank you for being a part of this.

Thanks to Sky for helping me get it off the ground.

And to each and every one of you, who visited, played here, hung your art here, lived here, died here, or just stopped in to see the ghost of Sid and Nancy.  Thank you, it’s been an amazing run.

To those of you still holding out in the RL Hotel, Ed, Deb, Artie, and the rest, our hearts are there with you.

This is very sad news.  Clearly, the Hotel was struggling – and the problem of declining tips has hit many, many venues. But equally clearly, the situation this time has not been helped by confusing messages from the Lab.

At the very least, there should be a Linden charged with checking up when one of the iconic builds goes into default (or holds up a hand and announces problems by contacting support).  This isn’t to say that such builds should be archived by the Lab – in fact, I would suggest to Mykal that – if he wants to preserve the build –  he could archive all the parts that he has full permissions for to Kitely where it will cost him nothing – and the people who want to visit will pay.  But I think the Lab need to do something to dispel the impression that they are doing nothing at all to help the drain of important builds out of Second Life … in fact, their information and sometimes downright idiocy is in fact exacerbating the situation – the billing problem that nearly drove the Elves away, for example.

Second Lie (as so often) nails it: We are proud of the “historical” builds in Second Life. In fact, we’re working hard to make them history!

Let’s try to stop that, fellers? Please?

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UPDATE

We have had some immensely cheering news about the Chelsea: one of the residents of the real life hotel, still holding out against eviction in the real world, has donated a month’s tier to keep the build going, and is going to work with other real life residents to keep the Virtual Hotel going.  I’ve pasted the rest of the message below in the comments.

 

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This week, Saffia and Elrik further explore the extensive railway tracks that spread across the continents of the Second Life mainland, in the company of Marianne McCann and Moundsa Mayo of the Virtual Railways Consortium.

In addition to seeing some amazing locos, riding the rails and visiting numerous locations along the way, we learn about the history, organisations and technologies that lie behind the railways of Second Life.

The Wolf of Badenoch locomotive, photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

The Wolf of Badenoch locomotive, photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

And we took with us the brilliant photographer Wildstar Beaumont – who feel in love with the trains just as much as we did – and here’s a wonderful slideshow to prove it (you can see it full size here).

Wildstar’s Railroads on Flickr, posted with vodpod

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Do you like things that are big, frequently red, and throbbing as you ride them? This week Designing Worlds is all about Second Life railroads! Catch us at 2pm SLT today, Monday 20th February, at our beautiful studio in Garden of Dreams.

Calleta Terminal - picture by Wildstar Beaumont

Calleta Terminal - picture by Wildstar Beaumont

We’ll be exploring some of the fascinating stations to be found on the routes of the Second Life Rail Road (SLRR) and talking with Moundsa Mayo and Marianne McCann of the Virtual Railway Consortium (VRC). And we’ll be looking at the work of some amazing talented creators – both builders and scripters, as well as some of the communities that have grown around the railroad tracks too – both on the Second Life mainland, and in the themed environment of Bay City.

Steam Engine at the Virtual Railway Consortium - picture by Wildstar Beaumont

Steam Engine at the Virtual Railway Consortium - picture by Wildstar Beaumont

It all makes for an amazing show – and it will show you a side of the mainland that some people may find surprising.

Bhaga Junction - picture by Wildstar Beaumont

Bhaga Junction - picture by Wildstar Beaumont

We will be screening this show in our studio, designed by Kayle Matzerath, on our new location in Garden of Dreams. Do come and join us there at 2pm!

Pawpaw Station - image by Wildstar Beaumont

Pawpaw Station - image by Wildstar Beaumont

Or – if you can’t attend in person – tune in at 2pm SLT on Monday for the live show on http://treet.tv/live – where you can now chat with other audience members and even some of the participants during the show – or catch it later in the week on our shows page on the Treet.tv web site at http://treet.tv/shows/designingworlds- our very own version of the iPlayer!

The wrong side of the tracks? Image by Wildstar Beaumont

The wrong side of the tracks? Image by Wildstar Beaumont

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