Monday, January 24, 2022

Second Life Destinations: Hanging Gardens of Babylon

 A little more than a week ago, Linden Lab featured on Second Life Destinations a build inspired by one of the Seven Wonders of The Ancient World, The Hanging Gardens of Babylon.

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Creator Patch Thibaud is actually an architect in the physical world as well, and his years of experience inform every detail of this majestic locale. After observing some work on Patch’s Flickr, Resident Crista reached out to him to build a region for her. Of the request, Patch says, “I agreed to participate as long as I got to do The Hanging Gardens of Babylon, which was an ideal subject; an evocative and romantic concept, monumental in scale - and nobody has any idea what the original looked like, if in fact it existed at all.”

Patch’s affinity for building in the metaverse is strengthened by the fact that “there is no one in between me and the final result; I don't have to deal with contractors, estimators, building codes, etc.,” and yet there are limitless possibilities. Furthermore, Patch feels that “in all 3D modeling software I am familiar with, you are working in an abstract, gridded space. In SL I am used to working outdoors, with a beautiful sky and perhaps with beautiful water, and the context of an entire world.”

The concept of storytelling has been incorporated into many visual art forms, and as a trained designer, Patch adopted an episodic approach to the immense project. Patch created an extensive history for the estate: “This build imagines a structure originally built in mud brick by the Assyrians; later seized and rebuilt in stone by the Romans; {eventually} acquired by a cardinal during the military struggles of Renaissance Italy, who rebuilt the temple complex at the summit to include a villa for him and pleasure gardens and pavilions; subsequent alterations and additions by the cardinal’s family, including the ballroom and the Moroccan Garden; and finally the current owner, who restored the whole structure and its gardens, and inserted a gallery for art, built in the modern style.”

Crista is also a longtime Resident, having started her inworld adventures 14 years ago. For Crista, Second Life is “a part of myself… part of my life and {it has} taught me many things that made me what I am now, in RL and SL. I am one person living in two different worlds. A wonderful SL can make a better RL. The Gardens were my SL dream for years… A ton of thanks to Patch Thibaud, I am not sure if we have a better builder. Sharing the beauty he makes, {as well as the} sensations and feelings deriving from it, is the biggest pleasure and satisfaction in this world.”

(Click here if the video does not load)

Sunday, January 23, 2022

Cartoon of The Day: Split Decision


Taken at the Happy Vixen. This avatar is of two colors, split down the middle of the head. Which brings new meaning to having a split decision.

By Bixyl Shuftan


Friday, January 21, 2022

Opening of Sansara Embassy, and Tour


Gemma Cleanslate was recently at the opening of the Bellessarian Embassy in the mainland continent of Sansara (not Sansar the virtual world no longer owned by the Lab). But instead of a formal party, what followed were visitors being invited on a tour by bus. The result was an hour of thrills, and more than a few spills.

Read more in Places.

Various New Year's Happenings


New Year's Eve was a busy time in Second Life, with many places having parties. Yours truly went to several, and took a number of pictures. So many were taken, it took a while to get them all up. But here they are.

See the pictures in Events.

Eye On The Blog: Updating Script Performance

On the official blog yesterday, Linden Lab announced they had "released a change this week" with the aim of improving script performance in the Grid: Uplift.

Uplift has been an ongoing adventure for a number of engineering teams, but the goal of improving the SL experience for all residents has not changed.

Uplift brought in new hardware and the ability to reconfigure it quickly to react to changing circumstances. A few months ago, we quietly changed hardware configurations to provide better performance for the simulators, but our job was not done there.

After this upgrade our engineering teams dug deep into the simulator to modernize it and take better advantage of AWS capabilities. We referred to this as our “Tooling Update,”  which allows LSL scripts to run more efficiently. Regions with heavy script usage will likely see more scripts run and even some spare time returning to the simulator.  The release also includes a modernization of our compiler and supporting runtime.  Newer tools allows for better code generation and awareness of modern CPU designs.

But the Lab admits there have been unforseen problems that residents may experience.They stated, "with more scripts running, other areas of the simulation environment may be driven harder.  Scripts that were already approaching throttles or other limits may find a throttle engaged .... We do see the possibility of revisiting these throttling limits as a result of these improvements. They could see higher request rates as scripts perform more work."

For the blog post in full, Click Here.

Announcement: This Saturday at The Science Circle - "Webb Telescope," "Organic Chem Basics"

The James Webb Space Telescope: A Summary

Saturday January 22,

9:30 AM to 10 AM SL time

I briefly review the science mission of the JWST and discuss its potential discoveries. I do this in the context of the discoveries of Webb’s predecessor, the Hubble Space Telescope.

– Dr. William. F. Wall / Syzygy Asymptote


For more information, Click Here.

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Beragon’s Bistro: Webb Telescope

Saturday January 22,

10 AM to 11 AM SL time,

A discussion hosted by Matt Burr at the Light house Cafe

The Light House Café

For more information, Click Here.

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Organic Chem Basics: Diels-Alder and Similar Reactions

Saturday January 22,

9 PM to 10 PM

The 2021 Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded to Dr. Benjamin List (Max PLack Institute)  and Dr. David MacMillam (Princeton University) for “the development of asymmetric organocatalysis.” One of the first reactions that they found could be catalyzed by purely organic compounds was the Diels-Alder reaction. The Diels-Alder reaction is a well-known example of a fundamental class of reactions in organic chemistry, and it can proceed unaided, be catalyzed by metal-containing compounds, or most recently catalyzed by purely organic species. We’ll talk about what makes the Diels-Alder reaction special, and how it has been catalyzed in the past, and why the recent Nobel prize is seen as a jump forward.

A presentation by Dr Michael J. Shaw


For more information, Click Here.

Thursday, January 20, 2022

Announcement: Deep Blue Sea Gridwide Hunt


Get ready to dive into the deep blue sea!  Take a trip into the oceans blue and find deviously magical mermaids, frightening krakens, and mysterious creatures.  Sail the high seas and discover some pirate treasure adventures with us on our free gridewide hunt and chill out with open:air's live event experiences. Adventure calls and Chronicles will open January 15th at noon SLT and end February 5th

To start the hunt use the SURL at the bottom of this announcement. Simply click the hunt prim example by the Deep Blue Sea HUNT sign to receive your landmark to your first destination. You’ll be looking for a Treasure Chest in each of the stores you visit! The landmark to the next location will be located in the folder along with your prize. Alternatively you can use the page on the website for hints.

Announcement: "Celebrate Ascendant Base's Grand Opening" in Star Wars Sim


You are cordially invited to come party among the stars at the grand opening of the Ascendant Base (a science fiction sim in the Star Wars Roleplay universe). We will have music with DJs and live music from Spiral Sands, Gypsy Witch, Kyizl and more from 6 PM to 9 PM SLT on Saturday January 22nd, 2022.

Ascendant Base is a science fiction sim in the Star Wars Roleplay universe that is open to all players and science fiction fans. It is a full and maxed-out sci-fi sim made by fans large enough to have room for multiple role-play events to co-occur.

There will be tours of a 6 level 300-meter-tall space station and the planet it orbits.

Whether you are a Star Wars Role-Player on Second Life or just a fan, come out and join us for this grand opening and bring your sci-fan friends.

The landmark will be live 24 hours before the event:

Hat tip: Brandi Streusel

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Cartoon of the Day: Big Blue


Taken at the Happy Vixen, Skylark "Snowbuns" Lefavre demonstrates a huge blue fox avatar. 

By Bixyl Shuftan


Microsoft Announces It's Buying Activision/Blizzard


In what would be the biggest computer gaming business acquisition in business history, yesterday on Tuesday January 18 Microsoft announced it was buying Activision/Blizzard. The deal would be at 68.7 billion US dollars, or about $95 a share.

“Gaming is the most dynamic and exciting category in entertainment across all platforms today and will play a key role in the development of metaverse platforms,” Microsoft Chairman and CEO Satya Nadella would state, “We’re investing deeply in world-class content, community and the cloud to usher in a new era of gaming that puts players and creators first and makes gaming safe, inclusive and accessible to all.”

Activision/Blizzard is best known for the well-known MMORPG World of Warcraft. But has also been successful in games such as Overwatch, Hearthstone, Diablo, Starcraft, and Call of Duty.

Microsoft had already been a company heavily invested in gaming such as with it's X-Box and having acquired the popular Minecraft some years ago. The deal would make it the third largest gaming company. It is notable that while Minecraft's maker Majong was acquired while both the game and company were doing well, in recent months Activision/Blizzard has suffered a series of blows, most notably a rash of sexual harassment allegations. It's stocks have sunk more than 37% since it's high last year. Activision/Blizzard's CEO Robert Kotick would continue for now, though is expected to step down once the deal closes, which may take as long as a year and a half to complete.

Sources: Microsoft, Reuters, The Verge

Bixyl Shuftan

Bellisserian Bureau of Bureaucracy's Second Anniversary Celebration


The Bellisserian Bureau of Bureaucracy, or BBB, the people who made the popular passport stamp collection system, are about to celebrate their Second anniversary. It will be an eight day celebration, starting on Sunday January 23.

The party will run from January 23rd to February 1st and will open on the 23rd with a boat rally and DJ dance event, followed by a grand Opening Ball and fireworks. The full schedule of events will be published in the next edition of the Gazette and will include (among many other things) an art exhibition on the theme of travel.

There will be events every day of the celebration, such as DJ parties, boat rallies, and Meet and Greet events with the Bellisserian ambassadors. There's also an art exhibition.
The event will be held here :

Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Events This Week at the Sunweaver and Montecito Bay Clubs, The Fallout Shelter, and Furry Fashion Lounge


Here's what's going on at the Sunweaver and Montecito Bay clubs, The Fallout Shelter, and the Furry Fashion Lounge.

Club Cutlass: MTV Flashback, Blue and Purple, Off to Africa

Happy Vixen: Rumble in the Jungle, Undies, Fantasy, Best in Red, Madkatt Mashup, TBA, Boots and Bikinis, Rave

Club Zero Gravity: TBA

Bouncing Bunny Beach Club: Scalies

Xanadu: DJ Christine, DJ Jesse

Montecito Bay:  CAYA, After Dark

Furry Fashion Lounge:  Barely There, Bunnies VS Cats, Felines, Nocturnals VS Diurnials, Late Night, Scales vs Fur

Deathlands Fallout Shelter:  DJ Wolfy, DJ Nafrini

Read the schedules in SL Clubbin'.

Reader Submitted: "Elf Equality" Protest


"Having toured and scoured the Fantasy Community Center I have detected a glaring lack of a statue to our beloved Rillifane, Leaf Lord and primary Deity to Wood Elves, and many Fae, faeries, humans and lovers of the wildes.  This blatant slap in the face can nae stand unanswered. Tis bad enough we must endure taunting from Sun Elves about our natural ways,  They call us simpletons and ignorant.  And they say we are nae fit to sleep with pigs but I assure ye we are.   I stand at an appropriate location to correct this injustice, and urge an exploratory board be formed, a committee convened, a clutch clatched to resolve this injustice forthwith, fifthwith even.  I submit this with a resounding,  Hmmmph!" 

Tealcie Annibles 

Editors Note: The "protest" was in the name of fun.