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High Fidelity: I shouldn’t have signed up :-p #VR #SL

So i’ve been an Alpha for High Fidelity over a year now and really i’m one of the last people they should have accepted.

I’m a content creator in that other virtual world Second Life and I’m able to bring my creativity to life there because of the great tools Second Life has to offer. It’s a little presumptuous to think that those same tools would be copied in other virtual worlds and in the case of High Fidelity it’s as alien as it could be.

Of course HyFy is deep in Alpha development, and while i’ve been unable to create the sorts of things i have in Second Life (almost nothing at all in fact) i’ve kept my mind open for what may lay ahead. In many ways the content is not important to HyFys future, it’s the services that can be built on it and drive content creation. What you can do there now is the bare bones of an experience such as choose an avatar, set up a space and import FBX files. This might seem underwhelming for hardcore Second Life Users but its a coders paradise.

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I have my own HyFy domain called Never Space. Though its hardly ever up and just has an asteroid with a park bench on it. I’ve since tried to upload more stuff but I’m still having trouble with FBX file formats.

 

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Im most interested in making avatars in High Fidelity. Ever since seeing Faceshifts ability to transfer the nuances of your expressions to you avatar i’ve wanted to do that. But making an avatar hasn’t been as simple as i expected what with FBX file format troubles and licensing of software. I did manage to create this Lokibot avatar which floated about in the air. It’s since been deleted from the HyFy inventory :-p

 

How i am seeing it, HyFy is a platform for the next Google to come along and create a service that offers something for VR users.

How the HyFy Alpha looks now i’m confident won’t remain so for long. I feel maybe, especially in my little VR bubble that people expect it to be a virtual world you build from the inside, but I’m starting to think i should come at this alpha from a UNITY/UNREAL developer viewpoint. With HyFy being pretty open with scripting and hosting, it would only take one dexterous developer to create a plugin to import an entire OculusVR demo from Unity3D. Perhaps it is from that dev crowd HyFy should be attracting interest from, rather than me who just uses tools already available to create content.

I’ll keep poking at it because eventually someone will make the tools that will unlock my imagination… or allow me to order pizza :-P.

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Doing the Double threat Meme

Decided to take part in Strawberry Singh’s Double threat Meme because i desperate to be part of the cool gang!

Two online screen names you’ve had: EddySparks & Demonkid

Two video games you’ve played: Ni No Kuni & Papo and Yo

Two things you love about Second Life: First is how it allows all my creative interests come together in a way that i could never have dreamed of a decade ago. Second is how its opened my world view with friends from all around the globe sharing their different cultures while also bonding over our shared similarities.

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Two things you’ve done in Second Life: Watched the Eurovision song contest live in world with friends from many of the other countries entering the contest. I also found an audience for my stories and art.

Two things you still want to do in Second Life: I’d like to make an adventure game system that allowed quickly and easy to create stories and encounters for RP stories so i don’t have to work quite so hard.  I’d also like to take part in the LEA.

Two things you like about your Second Life avatar: His carefree appearance that helps me relax and have fun. Even when i get frustrated in SL my avatar reminds me not to take things quite so serious. Second is his toes. The day i made him Mesh feet with individual toes i knew there was no going back.

Two of your Second Life Pet Peeves: There are so many LOL, hard to narrow it to two… let me see….  Sculpties … erm… and attachments that give you an ARC of a gazillion when i know if imported efficiently would not need to be so high.

Two things you did as a newb that you’re embarrassed of: When i first arrived i poll danced for linden dollars in a purple club. Second i stalked an elf and he caught me doing it, probably cos he had the mini map open.

Two of your closest friends in Second Life: Really hard to name just two, but i’d imagine most would expect me to say Gemini. So much of my SL history is shared with him that we’re honorary brothers. The Second is my friend Billy who’s alternative socialising skills taught me tolerance, patience and humility.

Two of the most beloved things in your inventory: Hmm this ones hard, i’m known for throwing stuff aside after I’ve finished with them and moving onto newer things. One is probably my sculpt cat that sits on my Cabin bed. Placed it there when my real world cat called Willow died, although id probably update it to mesh if i saw the chance. My Mesh body which has allowed me to look exactly how i wanted to after a decade of looking freaky.

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Xiasumi School Festival: Uniforms & Arcades Machines

So yes i’m one of the designers at this years Xiasumi School Festival. After finishing my Mesh Avatar it was inevitable that i would at some point make V4 school uniforms.

Gakuren School Uniform

Xiasumi School Fest gave me an opportunity to make and showcase new uniforms and after a suggestion from my friend Pokute i decided to make a Japanese style Gakuren uniform in theme with the Xiasumi School.

Uniform

The Gakuren Jacket comes with everything built into one top. Click the back to get a menu and select wether to wear the jacket closed, open, with shirt buttoned up or open, or without the Jacket, long sleeve shirt or short sleeve shirt. No more will you have to browse inventory for the look of the moment.

 

This has to be one of my best clothes yet. Not only was i pleased with the material mapping, but the shape and features that allow you to customise how you wear the uniform on the fly is my best yet. Im already working on a western style uniform that i hope to have on sale next week.

 

Retro Arcade Table

Another idea Pokute gave me was to make an arcade machine to go with the club theme i chose. So i went ahead and made a retro arcade table. Modelling in blender was pretty easy and quick, as was adding the textures. Material Mapping the Carbon Fibre casing and the Glass top made for some very nice detailing.

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The real work came when i scripted the arcade to make authentic sounds and animations. Like most things i make, i wanted it to be more than just a static object. I wanted to make it so when you sat at the table it played the game animation and music. This took me and my friend Wulfric quite a while to figure out due to how SL handles sounds.

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Two can sit at the arcade, great for moments when you need a chat. Also can choose between 5 games to display, each with their own authentic sounds when Fidel and when playing.

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Retro Arcade Table
by lokieliot
on Sketchfab

 

Some have already asked why i could not simply add flash games to the machine and the answer simply is because SL’s webkit is crap and Mac users can’t view flash video because of that. If Linden Lab ever update the web plugin, perhaps then i can make arcade machines that actually play proper games via flash, HTML5 or javascript.

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Both the uniforms, Arcade Table and other items are available from today in my classroom at the Xiasumi School Festival on the GAME/COMPUTER club area. You can try out the Arcade table there. :)

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Xiasumi School Festival

‘There’s nothing to do in Second Life’ Thats what i hear a lot from people who don’t use the VR-World Platform Second Life. Then why have i found myself staying up all night putting finishing touches to 3D objects while scripting features for the opening of another Virtual Festival?

There isn’t a month or a week where there is not some kind of festival kicking off on the SL grid. I’d even go as far as to say that ‘festivals’ have overtaken ‘dancing in clubs’ as the number one past time in Second Life.

Virtual Festivals in SL might be the inevitable result of the ever changing culture of Second Life. So many of the things that could be perceived as the core of Second Life activity converge at these festivals.

• Entertainment.

• Socialising

• Consuming

• Charity

• Creativity

Secondlife land is expensive, search is poor, Marketplace is hard to be seen, and the response could be  these festivals. Efficient organised collaborations of the communities of creators supported by their devoted users. Is there an opportunity here for the Lab to help festivals more?

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XIASUMI SCHOOL FESTIVAL Coming to April 3rd.
Xiasumi School Festival.

Today the school doors open at the Xiasumi School festival. I saw glimpse of it last year and when my friend Pokute mentioned it was happening again this year i jumped at the chance to take part. The Xiasumi School Festival showcases work from over 100 designers from across the grid set in a Japanese school building with themes based on School Clubs. While it is all set in a school, there is nothing childish about it. Designers have created all manner of creative designs from clothes, to accessories, hair, emote gadgets, food, cutlery… the list is endless and can be enjoyed by avatars of any shape or size.

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Each floor in the school has a theme such as Cooking, Gardening or Computers which challenged the creators to decorate. It is requested that visitors vote with donations on the best theme area. The winner being the area thats raised the most money which goes towards the Save The Children Fund.

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The School is located on just ONE region which might prove difficult to enter on opening day. maybe they can expand to two regions if the festival proves popular?

The festival is located on just one region, so it might prove hard to get into during the first day of visitors, but you will have plenty of time to visit as the festival runs from 3rd of April to 21st of April at which point you then have a week before Fantasy Faire opens :-p.

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Xiasumi Website

 

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SL Feed Me [UPDATED]

In January 2010 Linden Lab bought a little social website called Avatars United. Everyone i know flocked to it and started up little groups and sharing. By September 2010 Linden Lab closed down Avatars United and not long after…… the SL feed appeared.

I love the SL Feed but it always feels like it’s half way between being closed down by the Lab or being expanded to fully function with Second Life. If the current trend is anything to go by, i would not be surprised if the Lab decide to close SLfeed down now that we can export to third party services such as twitter and Facebork.

There is more support for posting Marketplace items on Twitter and Facebork than there is for Second Life’s own social network page, same goes for destination guide and i expect the same for Experiences once thats out.

I wonder what SLfeed is to Linden Lab? is it perhaps a legacy feature that’s crumbling in the wind of time, causing grumbles every time it acts up and stops posting peoples shared experiences of the grid.

I wonder what SLfeed is to the majority of Second Life’s users, most of who don’t even know the feed exists.

For me it’s still the main place i go if i want to see what my friends have been up to on the grid. It’s where each day i receive this or of a similar message.

“good day good afthermoon, good morning Loki”

 

UPDATE: It fells to me that by buying Avatars United, Linden Lab destroyed something that could have grown to be a pivotal service in the new VR Hype Cycle. Avatars United could have become a popular alternative to Facebook and other Anti-Anonymity services and a service of choice for new Virtual Worlds. Oh well :).