Archive for the 'secondlife' Category

Second Life and Electric Sheep on MSNBC News

Check out these two clips from MSNBC News. One featuring author Tim Guest and another with Sibley Verbeck from The Electric Sheep Company.

Clips show after the 30 seconds ad.

KozCast2 : Koz Farina in Second Life

Wow! Can you believe it!! Two in one day!

DOWNLOAD PODCAST MP3 HERE

This one is more focussed on my Second Life. Still a bit of a ramble (just the way I like it) – tangential thoughts and ideas. No outline. Podcasting by the seat of my (flexi) pants! Woo!

I made the intro music here, using sounds that the UI makes, along with some beats and stuff I threw in there πŸ˜‰ Hope you like it!

Dana Gardner Has Second Thoughts

What makes Second Life eerily powerful is the zero-distance between thinkers and technology by ZDNet‘s Dana Gardner (and the ‘Briefings Direct’ podcast)– There is an egalitarian equalizing effect when your avatar IMs with another … even if you know who they are. There’s a comfort level with being virtual, and the IBMers seemed eager to chat with lots of folks. I can see getting better access to executives and the creative minds at IBM in Second Life than I do in real life, and that’s a good thing.

—–

He’s right. But people also said that the internet and computers themselves take away a certain amount of the human experience too. I was told this ever since I fell in love with ‘playing’ on a computer as a child. I was told I was wasting my time and ‘missing out’. I sat and thought that I was seizing an opportunity to learn about these things, as we’d soon be surrounded by them everywhere we went. Whether for business or pleasure.

Then, when the Web and interent came along, I immediately connected and communicated with people all around the world (this totally blew my mind). Some of these people have become good friends who I go to stay with, or vice versa, in the ‘real world’.

Communication like this is so unbelievably powerful and incredibly resourceful, it almost brings a tear to my eye. Just about all the fundamental knowledge in various programming languages I know came from information from people on the internet, directly or indirectly. (I owe them all big time – and try to share knowledge back to this new ‘community resource’ as much as possible – and more in the future, in a more structured way).

I was invited to this IBM event too. Who me? Little old me? Sat at home on a computer? Yes. Me. How cool is that!? Unfortunately I couldn’t make it. We know the world is round, but sometimes we forget the time differences in a global forum. πŸ˜‰

I had the pleasure of having lunch with Dana back in the summer too. All through connections made through work, which in themselves are a product of my online world. A great, smart guy. A pleasure to talk to.

Second Life provides us with a feeling of ‘proximity’ to people we communicate with and gesture to. It’s hard to explain. It’s not like the odd feeling you get having a video conference with someone, where you look into the camera or not. It kind of feels more natural in a virtual world. (For me, anyway)

This platform is so powerful it must not be ignored. The interfaces will become more stable and realistic as time goes by. The landlord of the metaverse of the future might not be Linden Lab. It could be you. It could be the person sat next to you. Whoever it is, I promise you it’s not going to go away. It’s going to get BETTER.

Embrace it. You will thank yourself for it in the future. And who knows, you might actually make some money and new friends and have some fun on the way! πŸ˜‰

Second Life Hits 2 Million Signups

2 Million Second LIfe Signups
Wow. It only seems like yesterday when we hit 1 million!

3D News with RSS

For Vista, when it comes out, here’s an app/widget from Microsoft called UniveRSS.

UniveRSS is a showcase application that demonstrates the use of several WPF features, 3D animations, data binding, and data visualization. Currently UniveRSS uses the RSS Feed Store managed through Internet Explorer 7. Later versions will allow you to manage the Feed Store from within the UniveRSS application.

It looks very nice and very much the type of thing I envisage in Second Life, when (and if) we get html on a prim surface. With all the available data bindings and communications we have at our disposal there, it should be faily easy to build this in the Metaverse.

Thanks to Dave Winer for the link.

Second Life : The Book – Out now!

O’Reilly has finally released its book on Second Life, available for pre-order now via Amazon called ‘Second Life : The Official Guide’.

I had heard about a Second Life Hacks book from O’Reilly in the works a while ago. Someone in world had even gone to the trouble of mocking up a book cover ages ago which I saw in a sandbox area, claiming the authors to be the ‘FIC’ (Feted Inner Core). Since all the hack shenanigans on the grid recently, I can’t imagine a ‘hacking’ book will go down well with those who get scared by that term. ‘Hacking’ is not always bad. In fact without it, innovation would find it very hard indeed.

Second Life Hacks MockupSomeone once called me a hacker about 14 years ago. I was rather proud! πŸ™‚ I think they only called me that because I sat down and worked things out by myself, rather than followed ‘official intructions’

There is no spoon!Β  πŸ™‚

SL Money Spent Spiked

SL money spikeThat graph looks pretty impessive huh? It shows the US Dollars spent in Second Life over last 24 hours at $1,726,930 as of 9:00am PST today (10th Nov 2006).

Well, it turns out that something many people has thought is true – the daily dollar amount which Linden Lab tout as spent is actually (simply) total transactions in world.

This ‘spike/cliff’ was caused by an anonymous resident who wrote a script which passed some Linden dollars back and forth between two avatars. After an hour of running it had generated over one million Linden dollars of transactions, but no money was spent. The avatars which this was running on ended up with the same amount they started with. Zero sum.

I’m sure this is bound to come up at the next Town Hall Meeting with Linden CEO Philip Rosedale/Linden on November 16th. Many companies that arrive in SL are doing so due to all this ‘real’ money being ‘spent’ – hmmm. I wander what they will think. People will want better figures – like the ‘over one million residents’ stat. We want to know how many unique and ACTIVE users there are. Linden record the ‘MAC’ address of your network card, so they have the data.

(Graph saved from secondlife.reuters.com )

Virtual Customer Service Wins

James Corbett, ‘The Eirepreneur’ hits the nail on the head about customer service in Second Life, while he was at the blogHUD station. So many times when I have been around wanting to buy something, I have found myself in vast emporiums with no one around to help me. I often right-click something I like, then IM the creator, or view their profile to see where there might be help or more info about their skills and products.

I have to say, since re-re-reading James’ post, I’m really touched. Stuff like that hits a nerve. And it’s so encouraging. Thanks for that πŸ™‚ Truly.

SL Home SmallWhile I sit here alone in a flat in London working on my real life work, I sometimes leave ‘Koz Farina’ sat up in ‘the Lab’ at The RSS Platform (where I live in SL) on my laptop running SL – the place I sit is actually a virtual representation of the actual room I am sat in in the real world! (only ALOT tidier!) I always keep my mini-map open to see it anyone visits the platform or blogHUD area. When I do see someone there, I tend to pop down, say hello, and ask people if they have any questions about the product. Then I say I’ll leave them alone and tell them where I am if they want me. A bit like in a real shop – I hate shop assistants that hovver around around as you make your choices – but they should always be there to help you if you need them.

I usually make a sale or two from this small amount of effort. Just giving them the feeling that someone actually cares about the product and their experience with it.

The great thing about SL is the ‘virtual proximity’ you can feel while in another’s ‘presence’ – it helps you to ‘connect’ in some odd way. It ‘s GOOD πŸ™‚ and so rewarding.

Another thing about launching a virtual product, marketing it (to a point) and supporting the users and listening to feedback for new features in new releases, is that it is SUCH GREAT EXPERIENCE for the REAL world! From concept to prototype, to alpha testing, to release and actually selling it – then supporting and devloping it. It’s a wonderful experience – and experience that I want to carry over into my real world efforts.

The lifecyles are the same.

By the way – people still tend to ask me ‘what is a CREATEC?’ When I tell them that’s what I am: Here’s a diagram I did last year to help illustrate (part of) what I now do (it needs updating – I have evolved somewhat !:) )

A createc uses both the left and right halves of the brain, often in equal measure. It enables a total overview of a system. Front-end to back-end. From the engine to the bodywork and paintjob. A createc understands the whole system. One can communcate with designers as readily as programmers.

In this day and age – I believe it’s a REQUIREMENT. πŸ™‚

Take It Or Leave It

According to blogHUD user Dedric Mauriac, a version of the TV show ‘Deal Or No Deal’ has hit the metaverse, called ‘Take It Or Leave It’

Great idea!!

Dedric is also building a Wheel of Fortune (I think πŸ˜‰ ) in SL too!

Building Reality

Just found this great video of a a presentation (wmv) from Linden Labs’ Cory Ondrejka (Cory Linden) and Jim Purbrick (Babbage Linden) from the Microsoft Lang.NET Conference in August – called ‘Building Reality : User-Creation and Scripting in Second Life’.

It’s mostly the slides and audio, but well worth it for the introduction into SL from Cory and lead in to the world of scripting ‘stuff’ in LSL, the Linden Scripting Language. Then Jim goes on to get very technicial, talking about how LSL will be moving over to use a more robust technology called MONO (which has a coool logo!) and will be 50-150x faster than the current system, using less than 50% of the memory!

Babbage gives a quick demo at the end (from about 70mins) to show (for the first time in public) a Second Life client running LSL AND MONO. He starts by showing script running as MONO spitting out Fibonacci numbers, which it does VERY quickly. Then he unchecks a box in the scripting editor to run it as LSL and it’s veeeery slow. Lag could be a thing of the past.

[AND, at about 38 minutes, Cory shows the blogHUD as an example! Yay to that!!! πŸ™‚ ]

Funny. At the end, someone in the audience sees that Babbage has a special menu item and asks, “What is ‘God’?” – Babbage answers, “God is me!” πŸ™‚ LOL.


Who is this ‘kosso’ anyway?

I am a 'Createc'. A creative technologist, entrepreneur/ hacker/ geek. Worked on building things on the web for over 12 years.

Used to work at BBC News interactive and created the publishing and delivery systems for video news to get distributed on huge screens in major railway stations around the country.

I left the BBC to become CTO / sole-lead architect/developer at podcast.com for three years.

I have now left them to build a start up a new system called 'Phreadz', which is a 'Social Multimedia Conversation Network', integrating everything that is 'V.I.T.A.L' to us on the web. Video, Images, Text, Audio and Links.

I built the whole thing my myself. I programmed every line of code and positioned every pixel. I'm looking forward to attracting an hiring new members of the team to help me out! :)

There are currently over 1000 happy and helpful beta testers on the system so far and one client of a white-labelled solution.



@kosso : twitter

kosso's flickr stream

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