Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Cartoon of the Day: Crabby Linden



Taken at the Isle of View. Bender Linden, whose title was "Destroy All Humans," was sporting a hermit crab avatar at the "Hug a Linden/Dunk a Linden" event on February 14. Obviously, he didn't come for a hug.
By Bixyl Shuftan

Interview with Nydia Tungsten about "Switched Destinies"


How many people can call themselves an author of a published novel? Probably not that many. But among those who have, Nydia Tungsten recently joined their numbers. She recently finished her sci-fi/fantasy story "Switched Destinies," and it's available for download on Amazon. I sat down with Nydia, and she had a few things to say about her tale.

Read the interview in People.

Hippo Technologies Announces Closure Due to "Infrastructure Failure"


Those whom have been around Second Life for a long time are probably familiar with Hippo Technologies, or at least it's products HippoVend and HippoRent, particulary merchants and renters. But the sight of the HippoRent cubes will soon be a thing of the past. On their blog on February 16, Hippo announced they were closing due to "infrastructure failure" of Rackspace Cloud Servers, which they had been using to hold their data.


On Feb 12th Rackspace Cloud Servers collapsed and took down the legacy Hippo web services which Rackspace supported. Rackspace admits service degradation to cloud orchestration and cloud servers. Surely in due time the long established server technicians at Rackspace will rebuild their cloud infrastructure, but for the time being there appears to be an unsafe amount of dust and smoke around the Rackspace Cloud server collapse to extract the backup databases to migrate to another server host.

For the last several years increasingly abandoned land through Second Life has also led to lack of new customer demand for the legacy web service. It marks a best decision for Hippo Technologies to step away from that legacy web service.

Hippo Technologies will certainly be keeping a keen eye to future trends in virtual worlds.



The statement is somewhat vague, as Hippo doesn't use a clear term like "shutting down." But the talk about "lack of new customer demand" and "will ... be keeping a ...eye to future trends" isn't the kind of words a company uses if they're keeping their product going.

Caspertech, perhaps Hippo's biggest competitor, would post about Hippo's close later that day on their own blog.

Today is a sad day for some, and a frustrating day for many, as Hippo Technologies has finally bit the dust. Hippo's services (including HippoVend, HippoRent and HippoUpdate) were extremely well respected and well established within Second Life for a long time. HippoTech pre-dates CasperTech by a few years, and although their presence in Second Life has slowly been in decline, many users heavily depended on them right up until today.

It's unclear exactly what happened - the blog post alludes to a catastrophic failure at Rackspace Cloud services, but Rackspace's own status page mentions no such failure (I have contacted Rackspace to ask for clarification). What is clear, however, is that it leaves a lot of users in a very unfortunate position - their vendors, rental units and update systems are suddenly non-functioning, leaving their businesses high and dry.

Aside from these two blog entries, there's not really anything to go on. A look at the two Hippo groups I found revealed no recent announcements. Their products are still on sale in Marketplace. When I talked to Casper Warden, the head of Caspertech, he didn't have a greal deal to add, "From my understanding, they were taken offline by a technical fault.  Given that their business was dwindling it was not worth the technical effort to invest into getting it back online." He did want to make it clear, " that it's only my understanding, i don't know anything about it for certain."

In any event, places that once used HippoRent are now having to decide what to replace them with.


Bixyl Shuftan

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Events This Week at the Sunweaver, Montecito Bay, and Furry Fashion Clubs


It's a week full of events at the Sunweaver and Montecito Bay clubs and the Furry Fashion Lounge.

Club Cutlass: Best in 'S,' Black and White Night, Fantasy

The Happy Vixen: Robots and Battlesuits, Disney, Denim,

Club Zero Gravity: Best Sweater, Best in Horses, Dragon Crew

Montecito Bay: Atom Punk, Oldskool, Vampires and Werewolves, Fantasy, After Dark

Furry Fashion Lounge: Fairy Tales, Forest Creatures, Magic, Jungle, Anime, Dragons, Creepy vs Cute, Fursonas

Read the schedules in SL Clubbin'.

SL Video: "There's Nothing To Do In Second Life"




(Click here if the video fails to play)

From Luca, who also did a "Just how big is Second Life" video, in Nov 2015, "Spoiler: The video's title is a lie.

"There's nothing to do in SL? It's dead and is like a ghost town? Suuuuree. What were shown in the video is not even close to a fraction of the amount of things that you can do in Second Life. Whoever goes into SL, spends some time in abandoned sims, then write about how SL is dead, is like going out, spends some time in abandoned or empty places, then write about how the Earth's dead. Do anything you want, be anything you want, create whatever you want, and join the fun :) No, like, seriously, create whatever you want, use the built-in object creation tools, import your 3D objects that you made on some 3rd party software, script it, whatever, you can do whatever, seriously. Use them, share them, sell them."

Monday, February 19, 2018

Scenes from One Billion Rising


Last week, the One Billion Rising event took place in places around the world, Second Life being one of them. The event is an annual demonstration in support of women's rights and against violence on women, and the virtual world has been a part of it from the first. Gemma Cleanslate and Bixyl Shuftan were both there, and took a number of pictures.

Read the story in Events.

Creations for Parkinsons


Creations for Parkinson's stands out as a location in Second Life in a number of ways. One is the place is very detailed in it's design, not just on the surface, but also it's skybox and underwater locations. It's also the location of many events that feature some good talent. And then there is the purpose of the place. Creation for Parkinson's is the location of Team Fox in Second Life which raises money for research on the disease for better treatments and one day a cure. Deaflegacy recently went there, and had a few words with Barbie Alchemi, the owner.

Read Deaf's story in Places.

Reader Submitted: "St. Valentines Day Massacre Revisited"



From Jessicabelle Dayafter. Jessicabelle was trying to do a an animation that was a playful tribute to the St. Valentines Day Massacre done by Al Capone's men in 1929. But it didn't quite come off right. So for now, she settled for a screenshot, with a pink "tommy" gun that shoots hearts, not bullets.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Cartoon of the Day: Flower Power



Taken at the Happy Vixen's "Flower Power" event.

By Bixyl Shuftan

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Scenes From Ark: The Hotel Bunnytickle



It's been about a year since I've written about my friends' misadventures in "Ark Survival Evolved." Since then, the game itself has continued to evolve in more ways than I can describe here. Among the changes is a new map: "Ragnarok." Nydia and her friends quickly established a main base in a cavern. But some of us wanted our own secondary bases. Among them is this one in the east side of Viking Bay, which came to be called "The Hotel Bunnytickle." It's grown to be about a dozen stories in height.

Besides the new map, there's a spinnoff game called "Aberration." In this game, players deal with an Ark gone bad with radiation and powerful monsters on the surface, so they have to start underground. I may write on the game soon. But for now, here's a picture to show the hijinks with the dinosaurs continue.

Bixyl Shuftan

SL Video: "Annabel Lee"




(Click here if the video fails to play)

From Amelie Marcoud on February 12, "A melancholic love story, written by Edgar Allan Poe.
Based on the poem 'Annabel Lee.' Filmed at: Bella Pace in Second Life. Music by Monica and Sara Gil.

Hat Tip: Hamlet Au 

Friday, February 16, 2018

SL Videos: "How Big Is The Map of Second Life, Walking Across the Map"




There's a man on Youtube who calls himself "How Big is the Map?" What he does is record himself walking across various gaming worlds such as "Ark: Survival Evolved," "Player Unknown's Battlegrounds," "Elder Scrolls Online," and many others. Most take a half hour to ninety minutes, though "Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall" boasts the biggest map he crossed, which took him about 70 hours in total.



Recently, WATM decided to take on crossing Second Life., in an avatar appropriately named "HowBigistheMap." But he ran into one complication obvious to it's residents: most of the place is private regions by themselves or in groups that are isolated from one another and accessible only by teleporting. But there were the continents. So he decided to talk across those, starting with Sansara. The journey took him an hour and a half. So crossing just this continent alone took more time than crossing most of the game worlds he'd spanned.



HowBigIsTheMap didn't stop there. He would go on to cross the continent of Jeogeot, which took him slightly less than an hour and a half. Then came his third and longest challenge, traversing the triple continent region of Corsica, Nautilus, and Satori. That took him almost three hours, which got him wondering how long would it take to walk across the whole Grid if it was possible.

Luca Grabacr came up with a kind of answer in her video in November 2015, in which she stated if all the sims were lined up end to end, it would take over 23,000 days to walk across them. Obviously that's not the same as crossing the map from one corner to the other. But these videos from these two people show when it comes to ground area, especially ground area with unique content, Second Life has the MMOs beat hands down.

Hat Tip: Hamlet Au
Bixyl Shuftan

Redwall Abbey at Sunny Beach



At the Sunweaver Estates, the home region of the SL Newser, there's a new building going up at the Sunny Beach sim, the "Redwall Abbey."

"Heads up on news from Sunny Beach," Becky Shamen told me, "We have begun building Redwall Abbey on the SW corner of the sim. The build will take time, but should generate interest in the sim and Sunweaver Estates. It's from a feature length animation about a Medieval fury community. I'm piecing together floor plans and building the whole abbey complex on Sunny Beach."

Taking a look on Youtube, and Wikipedia, I found the Redwall Abbey is from "Redwall," a series of Fantasy novels aimed at older children and young adults, written by Brian Jacques, of which an animated TV series was based on. Twenty-two novels were published, the first in 1986 and the last a few years ago. The TV series first aired in 1999.

Sunny Beach, also known as Mythica Woods, is owned by Erik Mouse, with Becky Shaman as an administrator.

Image Credit: Becky Shamen 

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Toontown MMO Back: Toontown Rewritten


What happens when a multiplayer online game is closed down by the company that owns it? For those with devoted fans with time and money, some may take matters into their own hands to keep it alive. In 2013, Disney pulled the plug on it's "Toontown" MMO after ten years. But shortly afterwards, a fan-made version of it appeared: called "Toontown Rewritten." Five years, and many updates, later, the game is still going. And it's completely free to play.

Read more in Other Grids, MMOs, and Games.

Press Release: "Burnal Equinox 2018: H2O = Water but H2+O -> Fire"


Creative Burners near and far, we call you to sign up and participate in the next event to take place on the virtual playa on Deep Hole: Burnal Equinox.

"H2O = Water but H2+O = Fire"

What does this mean? It is in two parts. The first we all know, that H2O represents WATER. But...the second part is not a chemical formula; rather it is an attempt to describe the process of combustion that results in FIRE. Both utilise hydrogen and oxygen, but manifest in different ways.

This excerpt from The Urantia Revelation may inspire ideas for creativity in building, art, and music for this event:

"Mathematics, material science, is indispensable to the intelligent discussion of the material aspects of the universe, but such knowledge is not necessarily a part of the higher realization of truth or of the personal appreciation of spiritual realities. Not only in the realms of life but even in the world of physical energy, the sum of two or more things is very often something more than, or something different from, the predictable additive consequences of such unions. The entire science of mathematics, the whole domain of philosophy, the highest physics or chemistry, could not predict or know that the union of two gaseous hydrogen atoms with one gaseous oxygen atom would result in a new and qualitatively superadditive substance—liquid water. The understanding knowledge of this one physiochemical phenomenon should have prevented the development of materialistic philosophy and mechanistic cosmology.

"Technical analysis does not reveal what a person or a thing can do. For example: Water is used effectively to extinguish fire. That water will put out fire is a fact of everyday experience, but no analysis of water could ever be made to disclose such a property. Analysis determines that water is composed of hydrogen and oxygen; a further study of these elements discloses that oxygen is the real supporter of combustion and that hydrogen will itself freely burn."

The event will officially open with a walk-on by the Lamplighters at 10:00am SLT on March 24th, and Burners are welcome join us in the fun. A fashion show will be featured at the stage during the event. A schedule of performances will be available closer to opening.

In the meantime, we come together as a community to prepare for this event. You are invited to PARTICIPATE, because no Burner is a mere bystander on the pixel dust of BURN2's Deep Hole playa that is our virtual Home. There are several ways in which you can do this.

Build on a Plot! 
Plots are free, but limited in number. Begin planning your creative build - plots on the playa will open for building starting the 27th of February. Placement will contact you starting then for you to choose your plot.

Sign up early! First come, first served get the plots!

Perform on the Stage!
The stage, a quarter circle, will be specially built for this event, where many can gather to listen, to dance and to enjoy this opportunity to celebrate the Equinox that brings the change of seasons and sunlight.

Sign up on this form and a member of the Performance Team will contact you to schedule your performance.

Become a Fashionista!
Sign up to be a model in the fashion show at Burnal Equinox!

SHARE the News About This Event!

Want more information? Connect with us through our networks::
Website: https://burn2.org
Twitter: https://twitter.com/BURN2BURNER
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/BURN2BURNERS
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/Burn2.SL/
Google+ Community: https://plus.google.com/u/0/communities/114073732445186160592
Regional Page: http://regionals.burningman.com/regionals/cyberspace/second-life/

BURN2 Inworld Contacts:
BURN2 Communications: iSkye Silverweb communications@burn2.org or contact inworld
BURNING MAN Regional Contact: sl@burningman.org

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Cartoon of the Day: Cupid's Favor



By Bixyl Shuftan

Grand Opening Ceremony for the Sunweaver Railroad


After months of planning, landscaping, bridge-building, and track laying, the Sunweaver Lines Railroad is finally operational. The creation of Cynthia Farshore, the railroad's track spans one end of the community land to the other, going through the main sims. On Saturday, there was a ceremony attended by a number of the locals to officially open the line to travel.

Read the story in Design.

Valentine Dance by the Safe Waters Foundation


With Valentines Day this week, there's been quite a few Valentine parties. But how many can boast being a mermaid party? On Sunday February 11, there was a Valentines Day dance organized by the Safe Waters Foundation, held at Antiquity MarieGalante, at the Water's Edge Merhaven.

Tonight, Antiquity and Safe Waters Foundation present a Valentine Dance!  Bring your special someone, or meet them here!  Music by DJ Cynthia Maine, the Gold Mermaid.  All are welcome!

The party was held over a heart-shaped dance floor underwater on the sea bottom. As the announcement stated, not everyone whom attended had a tail and fins. And some who were, it was for the occasion, "This is a fun event.  And I do not get very often to be a mer." DJ Cynthia played songs like the theme from Titanic, "My Heart Will Go On," and Elvis Presley's "Burning Love."

I was there only a brief time, but was around long enough to hear some of the conversation. "ala everyone." "... how have you been?" "Just as fine as frog hair, how about you?" "Frogs have hair?" "They do but its very very fine." "Only if they grab it from somebody's comb." "They buy little froggy wigs."

The Safe Water Foundation. led by GraceSWF Wrigglesworth, is the largest group of mermaids and mermen, or merfolk as they're sometimes called, in Second Life. For more information about them, check their website: http://www.goldmermaid.com/SWF/ .

Bixyl Shuftan

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Events This Week at the Sunweaver, Montecito Bay, and Furry Fashion Clubs


It's a week full of events at the Sunweaver and Montecito Bay clubs and the Furry Fashion Lounge.

Club Cutlass: Valentines Day, Pretty Purple, Taking Wing

The Happy Vixen: Flower Power, Formal Party, Pink and Red, Hollywood, Candy, Vampires, Alice in Wonderland, Mice

Club Zero Gravity: Best in Blue, Best in Hearts, Dragon Crew

Montecito Bay: Dieselpunk, Prom Night, Vampires and Werewolves, Satanic Panic, Sandstorm

Furry Fashion Lounge: Formal, Rave, Romance, Sealife, Goth, Swing, Horns, Genderbend

Read the schedules in SL Clubbin'.

Announcement: "Prom Night at the Magnum Opus"



"With Valentine's Day coming up, Montecito Bay is throwing our annual PROM NIGHT! And this year, it's a John Hughes inspired Valentine's Day Prom featuring The Lem N Ems! Prom Night at the Magnum Opus - Feb 14th 7-9SLT"

Montecito Bay (60/128/23)

Addition: Later in the day, BekNos (Becky Nosferatu) announced that Magican Productions is going to be raffling off two new colors of an avatar at the event.

One Billion Rising


By Gemma Cleanslate


Heads up to the returning One Billion Rising in second life  that will make its reappearance on February 14 . Read about the history and plans for this year on the website. Get involved if you can or plan on attending activities .

https://onebillionrisingsl.wordpress.com/2018/01/19/join-us-for-one-billion-rising-in-second-life-2018/


I went over to view the sims where preparations are going on .

I found one of the leads of the event, Judi Newell , fixing up the Poetry Stage site . “The events will be at 2pm, 3pm and 4pm SLT and will include booked performers followed by open mic, so people are invited to come along and join in. All forms of writing are welcome with a limit of 5 or 10 minutes depending on the number of people participating each hour. The event is in voice ."

Stevie Basevi, another lead , was working on one of the four gardens that grace the four outer corners of the four sims. She did not take the easy way of creating one garden and dropping it in each corner ... each one is very different so make your way around the outer roadway not only to visit the gardens but to enjoy the works of art the creators have dropped there . The exhibits are always in keeping with the theme of the day but lovely each in its own way. Every one of the leads has been working very hard to prepare for this event that has so much meaning to survivors and deserve a big thanks.

I have been involved since the first year as a greeter and a dancer in the videos and enjoy it very much and always learn from the activity. There is a rose hunt this year on the sims. This is a 24 hour event with djs on the center stage at varied hours and live  performances planned during the day and night . Keep an eye on the website for more information on artists appearing and when. There is a lot going on all over the grid this day but make time to get there!

The four sims have names that suit the day so well, Rise, Dance, Unite, Resist!


OBR - One Billion Rising in Second Life 2016.


https://vimeo.com/155103784  2016's video!!

Gemma Cleanslate

Monday, February 12, 2018

New Sponsor: Montecito Bay



Good News: Montecito Bay has just agreed to become a sponsor of the Second Life Newser. For those less than familiar with the area, the Newser wrote about the place in December. It's an active location with many events every week. Be sure to stop by and check it out.

Montecito Bay (31/128/26)

Eye On The Blog: "Shop Your Heart Out" and "Hug or Dunk a Linden"


Linden Lab is coming out with two Valentines Day themed events this month. One is a shopping event. The other is the yearly tradition that takes place this time of year: the "Hug or Dunk a Linden" event.

Love is a complicated creature — inspiring poetry, prose, songs, and art since the beginning of time. The Isle of View celebrates this complex feeling once again with the hub of all things Cupid and hearts - the Isle of View!
Roses are red
Violets are blue
Come hug and dunk some Lindens
At the Isle of View!


On February 14th from 10am-12pm SLT, join us at the Isle of View for a chance to hug and dunk some Lindens. Bring your friends, bring your family, bring your one and only - when else are you going to get the chance to cozy up to a Linden or splash one into a cold tank of water? An opportunity like this comes around about once a year — so don’t miss out.


The event takes place at the Isle of View at Isle of View (84/79/107).

For those whom still have their gear from the "Tyrah and the Curse of the Magical Glytches" game, there's a special new glytch in theme with the holiday you can capture and keep.

While you are at the Isle of View - you can hunt for some limited special Glytches. What’s a Glytch, you might ask? Part of a grid-wide experience that launched last September - Glytches are collectible little creatures that you can capture with tools that you can upgrade with gems. Get started (if you don’t already have a weapon and hud) at portal park, then bring your hunting spirit to the Isle of View to capture these adorably cute little rascals.  

There's also a "Love Bug" glytch available in Premium kiosks, for those with Premium accounts.

For those who prefer to shop, there's the "Shop Your Heart Out" shopping event.

 Our annual Valentine’s Day shopping event is back! Discounts on clothings, hair, accessories, decor, and more, plus gifts from many of your favourite Merchants and brands are available from now through February 26th. Drop by the Gilded and Golden shopping regions to collect your gifts and get some great deals. Many of our participating Merchants are also putting items in their Marketplace for sale, so be sure to visit them.

To get the free gifts and deals, head to Gilded (104/135/52).

 For a few years early in Second Life history, at least as far back as 2008, "Kiss a Linden" events were held at the Isle of View sims, while in the Teen Grid "Hug a Linden" events took place. With the closing of the Teen Grid in January 2011, "Hug a Linden" events were closed, and the last "Kiss a Linden" would take place in Feb that year. The Lab would quietly do away with the event, which took some by surprise next year. No reason was given for the closure, although it was part of a trend at the time of the Lab having less interest in interacting with the Second Life community. After three years, the Isle of View would reappear in 2015. And in 2016, "Hug a Linden" was back as part of the "Hug a Linden/Dunk a Linden" event at a rebuilt and expanded four-sim Isle of View.

 For more information, check the Linden blog entry here

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Cartoon of the Day



Taken at Bay City

By Bixyl Shuftan

Announcement: This Week at the Senchai Librarie


WELCOME TO THE SEANCHAI LIBRARIES
"We bring stories of all kinds to life, in VIRTUAL WORLDS."

--------->> COMING THIS WEEK

All stories told in open voice. All times SL/PT

**SUNDAY, February 11th at 6pm: MAGICLAND STORYTIME:  Caledonia is back at the Golden Horseshoe with Betsy Byar's "The Not-Just-Anybody Family" 

Magicland Frontierland, Bracket (181, 57, 30)

**MONDAY, February 12th at 7pm: Alan Dean Foster's SENTENCED TO PRISM Continues with Gyro Muggins
   
**TUESDAY, February 13th at 7pm: William Pene du Bois' TWENTY-ONE BALLOONS Concludes with Faerie Maven-Pralou, plus bonus material!

**WEDNESDAY, February 14th at 7pm:  Selections from Erin Morgenstern's NIGHT CIRCUS  with Caledonia Skytower

** THURSDAY, February 15th at 7pm: FROM THE SHADOWS: Phantom Lovers with Shandon Loring (also presented in Kitelyhop://grid.kitely.com:8002/Seanchai/144/129/29) 
Check out the stories and the storytellers at www.seanchailibrary.com

All times SL time, stories in Voice.

Unless otherwise noted, at Holly Kai Estates (215/44/277)

Friday, February 9, 2018

Press Release: Sunweaver Lines Railroad Opening of Regular Operations






Farshore Industries is proud to announce the opening of Sunweaver Lines Railroad. After a year of planning and construction the Sunweaver Estates now has a full size rail line extending the full length of the sim group. A fun way to see the lands and with it's many stops explore what it has to offer. Opening ceremony of regular operations will be held on Saturday, February 10th, at 2 PM SLT at Sunweaver Bay (88, 113, 22). After short speeches there will be the traditional smashing of the champagne bottle to launch the first run. All are invited to attend.

http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Sunweaver%20Bay/89/113/22

Mardi Gras Places in Second Life


On February 13, Mardi Gras will be taking place around the world. Second Life is no exception, and there are some various places set up to celebrate "Fat Tuesday." Gemma Cleanslate went to a few places. One known to some readers is Laura Liberty's Mardi Gras Town which appears every year. But there are some other noteworthy locations.

Read Gemma's article in Places.

Valentine Town


Valentines Day is almost here. And a place in Second Life that appears every year to help residents get in the mood for it is Valentine Town. Brought to Second Life by Laura Liberty, this year's town has a whole new look, one that required a little help. Bixyl Shuftan went to the place at Townies to both get a look at what's new, and with some of the people there, including one cheerful and unusual character.

Read the story in Design.

Error Messages


A couple people have been telling me the Newser doesn't always come up in their browser. Blogspot, which the Newser has it's pages on, seems to be glitching a little. If the paper has trouble loaded, refreshing the page once or twice should take care of it.

Hopefully the glitch will be fixed soon.

Bixyl Shuftan

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Real-Life Names Requirement Originally Considered For Sansar


In June 2016, Ebbe Altberg/Ebbe Linden made some remarks about Sansar that I originally heard as him thinking it might be best if Sansar required the use of real-life names. When the complete transcript was available, it turned out I had slightly misinterpreted the statements, and I retracted that part of my article. But questions over the matter continued. As it turned out, according to Tara Hernandez in a podcast hosted by TC Currie of "The New StackMakers," Linden Lab really did consider the idea that "no one is allowed to use a pseudonym."

"How do address that.," Hernandez spoke at around 20:30 in the interview about Linden Lab going over options on how to deal with griefing, "How do we address griefing in Sansar. One idea was, no one is allowed to use a pseudonym. There is no anonymity, and that way everyone will play nice, because we all know who everyone is ... (to Currie) you just winced. You can imagine the roar of outrage at this."

The interviewer's response was, "I'm sure those were men who were making this suggestion, mostly."

"Yeah, I think that's a fair assessment," Hernandez answered, "And you know, if you don't have to think about a particular issue that's forefront in your day to day experience, you just don't think about it. I chose a bear (avatar in Second Life) because I didn't want to have to deal with the implications of having a female avatar, right or wrong. ... So yes, I think women definitely, and also members of our queer community were like, 'Hey, we get what you're trying to do, but you might want to rethink that a bit because it's a safety issue. Stalking is a thing, virtual and otherwise."

She would go on to say, "I'm happy to say that discussion prompted the change. ... I think officially it's been deferred." She did admit the idea of scrapping anonymity "came from the right intent," and went on to say Linden Lab "has a long history of inclusivity. This is the most inclusive company I've worked with."

Of her current avatar in Sansar, she spoke amusingly, "I'm kinda annoyed because I can't be a bear yet. It feels wrong somehow. ... My nickname is 'Baloo.' "

Source: The New Stackmakers

Hat Tip: Hamlet Au 

Bixyl Shuftan

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Cartoon of the Day: "On a Roll"



From Club Cutlass. Gil Otaared (and Mini-Me) had a roll of toilet paper with her that night. When I asked what it was for, I couldn't remember the reason she gave. But the Internet being the sum of what it's users put into it, some put ponies, and some put, well, you know.

By Bixyl Shuftan

"Mole Day" at Bay City


They're the part of Linden Lab that's often overlooked, the residents from the Grid hired by the Lindens to build and script and paid for by the hour. But once a year, these people, the "moles" are honored by Bay City. On the weekend closest to Groundhog Day, they have a two-hour event with music, dancing, conga lines, lots of jokes, and a chance to meet some moles. Bixyl Shuftan stopped by, and saw what happens when Lindens, moles, and regular residents meet.

Read the story in Events.

Scenes From Second Life: Pony Salute to Superbowl 50



There wasn't a tribute event to the Superbowl this year that the Newser heard of. But Gil Otarred had a little salute to Superbowl 50 two years ago when the Colts beat the Panthers in what some brony fans called the "Pony Bowl."

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Events This Week at the Sunweaver and Furry Fashion Clubs


It's a week full of events at the Sunweaver and Angel clubs and the Furry Fashion Lounge.

Club Cutlass: Best in 'Q' and 'R', Green and Yellow, Let's Go Crazy

The Happy Vixen: "Back to School," "Tacky/Fashion Tragedy," "60s and 70s," "Squirrels vs Raccoons," "Stripes and Spots," "Roses and Lace," "Sports"

Club Zero Grvity: Mice, Star Wars, Dragon Crew

Furry Fashion Lounge: Wings, Barely There, Videogames, Purple, Bits and Butt, Release Party/Romance, Pastels, Furries vs Scalies vs Feathers

Read the schedules in SL Clubbin'.

Relay Refresh: Spotlight On Rita Mariner


As part of the "Relay Refresh," MamaP Beerbaum and Trager Alter have been going around interviewing various personalities of the Relay for Life in Second Life. Among those they talked to earlier include Stingray Raymaker and Gem Sunkiller. Their most recent interviewee was someone well-known to the Newser: Sunweaver chieftess and Sunbeamer team captain Rita Mariner.

Rita would tell me a couple days ago while the article was still being written that she'd been messaged by MamaP that the article was their longest to date, as well as being the most fun to write. Rita would talk about the fun the Sunweavers have, especially the "pun-ishment" of jokes and the events at our clubs. Of the latter, they got a small taste when Rita invited the two Relayers over to an event at the Happy Vixen.

But those wouldn't be the only things Rita would mention. She talked a little about the Sunbeamer Team, and the various events we have, such as the road rallies and air shows. And of course the "Bid Me" events. And Rita brought up the "Platinum Avatar Challenge" I did last year. One small mistake, they called it a "Bid Me," when the "Bid Me" I had just done was for a human avatar. Oh well.

Mama P and Trager will continue to interview more Relay personalities for a while. No telling who comes up next.

Bixyl Shuftan

Monday, February 5, 2018

A Look at VR Chat


By now, most of you have either tried Sansar or talked to or read the reports of people who have, and weren't particularly impressed. But there is another next-generation virtual world out there: VR Chat. If you're heard of the "Ugandan Knuckles" meme, this is where it came from, appearing on some of the videos that various youtube filmers have shown. But are badly-made video game avatars all that there is to the place? Yours truly decided to check it out.

Read the review in Other Grids, MMOs, and Games.

Sunbeamers Relay Team Has a Facebook Page



For those interested in the Relay for Life in Second Life, here's some news. Rita Mariner, the captain of the Sunbeamers RFL Team, stated this weekend that the Relay team now has it's own Facebook Page. So far, she's posted a number of pictures. No doubt there will be many more, as well as many stories, to follow.

The Sunbeamers are the Relay team of the Sunweaver/Angel community, where the Newser makes it's home inworld.

https://www.facebook.com/SL-RFL-Sunbeamers-991021537730329/

SL Video: "Our Digital Selves Official Teaser #3" [Drax Files Special coming 2018]




(Click here if the video fails to play)

From Draxtor Despress on Feb 1, "*** first teaser is here = https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T8GYs... & second one here = https://youtu.be/SODrRDJ-bQM ***"

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Cartoon of the Day



Picture from Lem Aiko (LemonPledge Resident). I forgot about this picture from New Year's Eve until I was looking over some notes. Better late than never. On the other hand, they wouldn't be the first to torture a noob for that long.

By Bixyl Shuftan

Scenes From Second Life: Beth Odets and Bat Masters



Musicians Beth Odets and Bat Masters performing at "Feed a Smile" on Saturday January 20. They were part of an event that had raised 22,000 Lindens by the time I teleported out. Both have been playing in Second Life for many years, sometimes with one another. Occasionally, they rib one another. "We are mutually .. pointing at each other," Beth would tell me yesterday, "for our and the others benefit."

Saturday, February 3, 2018

SL Video: "Only Girl"




(Click here if the video fails to play)

From Kraven Foxy on March 2017, "I guess she can breathe in space due to magical moonbeams mixed with her tears."

Friday, February 2, 2018

Virtual Museum of Black History


February is Black History Month in the United States. So Gemma Cleanslate decided to visit the Virtual Black History Museum in Second Life. Founded by ßяια Ŏ (abriannaoceanside) and Broderick Logan in December, the museum highlights the contributions of black Americans to US history, as well as their struggles earlier in time. There is also an art gallery there, and there will be a number of live music events there this month.

Read Gemma's article in Places.

News and Commentary: More Information on Team Diabetes' Question About Missing Money


"Where's the missing 100,000 Linden dollars that our supporters were told would be going to us?" That was a fairly simple question asked by Team Diabetes about a month ago. The issue has become one of the more controversial issues the Newser has written about after we first reported on it on January 8. Since our update on January 22, two more people came forward with statements, and I finally had a chance to talk to the man accused of swindling the donors and got his side of the story. Unfortunately for him, his alibi didn't quite match the evidence I had.

Read more in Extra.

The Science Circle: "The Cold Case of SN 1054"


by Giuseppe Longo
February 4th
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM PST

One of the most thrilling events on the sky would be Supernova (SN) event. Here, we investigate possible causes for missing historical records of SN1054 in Europe. We reconstruct the European sky at the time of the event and found that the new “star” (SN1054) and planet Venus are on opposite sides of the sky.

Namely, we find that Venus was in the east and SN1054 was in the west, with the Sun sitting directly between the two equally bright objects, as documented in East-Asian records. In spite of the relevance of the phenomenon no record of it is found anywhere in the European chronicles.

We present a likely explanation of such silence. An explanation which is connected with the schism between the Catholic and the orthodox churches and with the excommunication of Astrology and astrologers.

The Science Circle (61/127/32)

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Space Remembrance Day at the National Space Society


There are some events in which every American who was alive and more than a few years old knows where they were when they heard about it. Two involve the space program. One was when men finally landed on the moon. The other was a tragic event, when seven astronauts were killed when the space shuttle Challenger exploded shortly after takeoff. Just as space fans celebrate the triumphs of exploration, they also take a little time to remember those who were lost. On Monday, the National Space Society had their "Space Remembrance Day" discussion.

Read the story in Events.

Press Release: GoSpeed Racer Publishing eBook Novel



What? :        Release of an eBook novel from an SL resident.
Who?:          GoSpeed Rasere aka GoSpeed Racer
When?:        3 February 2018

Long time Second Life Resident, GoSpeed Rasere, is self publishing a science fiction novel on Amazon and Smashwords. The novel features several SL residents as main characters living in a futuristic virtual reality simulation. The novel, Rasere's War, is the first in a three book series. The follow on novel, We Built This City, is completed and will be released later in the spring.

Links to purchase the book are at: http://www.rjacques.net/bookstore/

I'm available for interviews on weekends and from 3-6pm SLT weekdays. Alternately you may submit questions via email gospeed@konastream.co