Thursday, December 31, 2015

Az... good as it gets

          Snakedance Moonwind's lovely avie said it best...2015 was on it way out. Some of the  Safari regulars met to talk about what they thought the year had brought.

          It was a two stop Safari, the second half on the heart-breakingly lovely region created by Azi Az. Azi and her partner Danger Lytton, who hosts the region on a fabulous server connected to OSgrid which took in its stride the arrival of a dozen happy avies, despite the colossal amount of detail on the land.
       Arriving in the main square we immediately tp'd over to the ballroom where Danger was spinning some fantastic tunes. That made it easy to cam out ant about on the var region. It's pretty awesome, is open sim. A fair sized group of people, with my viewer set to Ultra and the maximum draw distance possible, and not a whiff of lag. Bliss.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Smokin' Safari

        It's that time of year when we are all subjected to a sort of mass hallucination that the whole world is knee deep in presents and snow, family and mistletoe. 
         That makes it refreshing, not to mention healthy, to take a minute to realize that not all cultures, lifestyles, or climates, are the same. 
         Safari began as usual on Teravus Plaza.


Tuesday, December 22, 2015

The Snowind Swansong

          It is their swansong, and so it is up to you and I to make the most of it.        

          After many years of providing fun and delight to their fellow residents, in the form of their seasonal treasure hunts, Nani Ferguson and Ange Menges have decided to take a break.  
          Welcome to Snowind, on OSGrid and Metropolis. HG Addresses at the end.

          The Hunts marked things like Easter and Christmas, which provided a convenient deadline to them, and a signal to us that there would be hours of fun to be had.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Var Out

Aime.Socrates: i'm looking much more intelligent with those horns
Dabici.Straulino: certainly more brilliant
snowbody Cortes: lol Aime

Lucy.Afarensis: Like your Xmas decoration Snowy
snowbody Cortes: oh ty Lucy .. a gift at Friday party , mattie mcbride
Lucy.Afarensis: she makes nice things
James.Atlloud: Do love the horns.
Lucy.Afarensis: lost my glasses
Prodyck.Theas: hello all
PatriciaAnne.Daviau: ok going to try and get to first stop...without crashing

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Safari goes Hunting

       In Open Sim, as in the real world, two things are guaranteed, nobody reads anything, and travel is dangerous. Well, of course, that's not true. It is just that sometimes, there is such an information overload, that reading doesn't cut it.
Gif shamelessly stolen from Serene Jewell
       This week the Safari did some recycling, for we did nothing more than hop over to the OpenSim Community Conference grid, which is a small purpose built grid hosted on the servers of the University of California at Irvine. Our goal - to visit the four Expo sims on the Conference grid, and then to try the Hypergrid Treasure hunt which is described on the four red posters you can see in this gif.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Safari Goes Jogging

      GeR.Orsini benvenuti in Craft grid e in Italia

        If you have been thinking OSGrid is a bit off color these days, between Notecards and prims and Landmarks and Friends acting up, then you are not alone. 

       Hypergridding has always been ...unstable is the polite word, but with the state of things generally with this latest horrible release, we were braced for a pretty bumpy ride this week. 
       And we were not disappointed by the crashy stuff... but equally, not disappointed by the absolutely gorgeous regions we got to see. 
        HG Addresses at the end of the post... but you knew I was going to say that.
Gondolas and gorgonzola??!  Italian heaven!

Saturday, November 28, 2015

A Scifi, Scofi, TP try and try Safari

 Beacon opensimworld: System.Reflection.TargetInvocationException: 
Exception has been thrown by the target of an invocation.    
        So, back to Metropolis for the Summer of Arts which has morphed into an Autumn and almost a Winter of Arts, which is fine by us - the more the merrier! If you have not been to Wanda Shigella's regions, you have time until the end of the year to enjoy the 40+ artists on show. 
       The addresses, as ever, at the end of the post.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Safari starts at a fest and ends up in Jail

It was highly inappropriate, to be on a cathedral sized art installation doing a girl gangnam style dance but that's how we roll.
      Two trips, and a shorter safari than usual, yet it felt like we encompassed the universe in this our 79th outing. First up, a visit to AvatarFest. This four day festival, part show and tell, part concert, was a huge success both socially and technically.


Thursday, November 12, 2015

Safari goes to the shows

George.Equus: Now stuff makes sense  :)
      The one thing that is always the same about our safaris is that they are never the same. Most weeks, two or three new friends join us and even when we go to places we have visited before, it always seems to result in a different experience.

      Take yesterday's trip to Metropolis and Francogrid, for example. 
Billy.Bradshaw: I have some chores in RL, will join the safari a little later
Alya VonZ: so glad it is wednesday, I could use a break:)
Thirza Ember: they are restarting the sim for destination 1 in a few minutes, so all should be ....dare I say perfect?? is that tempting fate?

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Non Stop Safari

       Nothing but movement, movement, this week - heck, even the musician was whirly  - Whirli Placebo, to be precise, but we will get to that later. All hypergrid addresses are of course at the end of the post, so you can go and see these places for yourself if you wish.       We started out at the Clubhouse, as we always do, on Teravus Plaza OSGrid, with 3 destinations lined up starting with Kodinpump, a prize hunt build simultaneously available on OSGrid and Metropolis. 

Saturday, October 31, 2015

So Wrong it's Right

        A giant smart phone in a soup of whatnots, the wistful implications of insanity, blocks and heads, and  a sort of glorious heavenly carrot cake - these are just some of the impressions to be garnered in the the playful, imaginative atmosphere at The Wrong Grid, a biennial digital art festival, which starts Sunday November 1, on Francogrid
       Organized by Frere Reinert and Ellectra Radikal, sometimes known as Step Flow, it's an opportunity to see art in OpenSim as never before.
Frere Reinert and Ellectra Radikal.
      This is a fresh and exciting art show featuring work by artists who, with one exception, FrancogGrid's own Cherry Manga, have not previously used OpenSim to display their art.  The art show is hosted on the sims of Claudius Utopy who also made the HUD for the event. Nice work Claudius! This post contains photos of just a handful of the installs, just a quick glimpse a the wonder that awaits you when you visit.

Friday, October 30, 2015

The Trick of Treats

      Kodinpump is the latest build by Nani Ferguson and Ange Menges. Available contemporaneously on two different grids, Metropolis and OSGrid, it is a Hunt, and celebrates the Autumn season with a Halloween theme.

      Kodinpump is a mesh build, richly embellished with capricious pumpkins that answer you back when you speak to them. Some will give you gifts, some insult you, and some will throw you off the sim.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Zafari with a Zee

If there is one thing worse than being mauled to death by a zombie, it's when the zombie that mauls you is a clone of yourself. It's bad for you, but it's super fun for those who see it happen. 
This is not a B move, it's an A+ immersive experience available on OSGrid thanks to the creative gorgeousness of Total Sorbet and Michelle Theiss.
Left to right: me in awe of script genius Total Sorbet and builder Michelle Theiss

This game is open 24/7 on sim Outbreak, OSGrid. HG addresses as always at the bottom of the post.
Relax in the main square, and cam out to watch other players - a great layout

The game has a straightforward shoot 'em up format, but to make this work in OpenSim, when you've got about 25 avies all running on the same region, is a tour de force. 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Calendar Girls

Ever since we began going on our HG journeys last year, it's been in the back of my mind to make a real world HG Safari calendar.
Whatever there is of ephemeral about virtual worlds seems to be amplified in OpenSim. Grids and regions come and go, and so too does the companionship of some of our fellow travelers. 

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Safari on the 'Fly

          This week we went Back to the Future - in so many ways! Spike Sol invited us to join the party on sim Pyramid, OSGrid, organized by Samira Santanko at the Blue Wave Club. The mesh Delorean was without doubt the star of the evening, as well as DeeJane Samira's choice of music - which began with the soundtrack of the film. You'll find the info for getting to our destinations at the end of this post.
Photo by Spike Sol 
          it was a fair bet that this was not going to be a simple Safari. After 75 weeks, none of us expect things to be super smooth, but that announcement on the OSGrid splash screen 'mandatory update'  was bound to make the blood run cold.  

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Safari gets a Fair Shake

       Two destinations this week, and both of them are about connecting and sharing across grids. Two hosts, Satyr Gator and Ozwell Wayfarer, both of them keen builders who have done that extraordinary thing, they have looked up from their own work and beyond their own creativity, and decided to do something for the greater good.
Ozwell Wayfarer and Satyr Gator
          Our first stop was on OSGrid, Satyr Gator's sim opensimworld full HG Addresses at the end, as usual. 
        This is a lovely imaginative build where you can find the famous beacons available - the beacon you'll need to add your grid to the website which allows people to find your region, club, shop or institution in the massive universe of ... well, open sim worlds, there's really no other way to put it. 

        Get your beacon, but explore the rest of the region too, there are NPCs and spaceships and a lovely psychedelic dance floor. But for our group, there was - let's say, a certain amount of lag.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Happy EVER After

         When the French invite you to dinner, you'd be crazy not to show up. When they say 'dinner theater', then even more so.  

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Safari gets Tangled and (almost) Terminated

This week we got some answers to questions like 'What's going on with this year's opensim convention?' 'How many times do you have to crash before you get to TanGle grid?' and finally, 'What's it like to have your own personal Terminator?'
Of course, there were other, perennial questions, such as 'Where's my hair?' 'Am I naked?' and 'Who is UMMA?' - all things that anyone who's been on Safari has heard - and said - many times before.

Joyce Bettencourt, co-owner of AvaCon grid, and local residents Sun,Tzu and Frans Charming welcomed us to the main plaza decorated with Ruben Haan artwork. After the usual - lovely - flurry of meeting, greeting and friending, we got right down to business.
Jessie Campbell: so I beg the question...what IS Avacon?

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Safari Summer... of Arts

        Plans change, and sometimes that's a very good thing. This week the plan was to spend just a little time taking a look around the Summer of Arts region on Metropolis, and then move on to a music event. 
        Apart from the general insanity, and the opportunity to make new friends, the underlying purpose of the Safari is to practice grid jumping, that's why we usually have two three or even four different destinations each week. But due to a last minute cancellation, the 72nd consecutive Safari was all Metropolis all the time. And boy, what a fantastic time it was too!
        As usual, the Safari began on Teravus Plaza, OSGrid. Teravus is a residential sim, we occupy the south west corner of it, right next to the waterfall. You will find the Group Joiner poster by the elephant. Every week a new Notecard + LM folder is prepared and you can get your copy from the sign marked LANDMARKS by the main entrance to the Clubhouse. I usually only do it at the last minute when all the panic has subsided. If you belong to the HGSafari group in Metropolis or OSgrid, you should also receive the information via group notices. Events are posted in a community on G+ called Hypergrid Safari, and a  group in Facebook, so find us there, if you use suchthings. 

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Bon Voyage Justin

        No trip this week, just a quick tp over to OSGrid's Event Plaza, for 3 hours of music and chitchat.

         Justin Clark-Casey, who has for several years been a key member of the OpenSimulator core developer team, recently announced he was stepping down from the project to focus on his new job.
He wrote about it here, if you'd like to know more.
Well, we couldn't let him go without a party!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

A Pale Safari

Wonderful architecture this week on a rip roaring Safari. A number of new friends joined us on Teravus Plaza, OSGrid, where the Safari generally starts out. It's always hard to tell if they're just curious about our group, or actually want to gridjump with us.

 If you're new and shy and not sure if you're going to be able to make the jumps, please go ahead and IM Fuschia, Wizardoz, or me and we will make sure we get you to the first destination. It is extremely common to crash when you're new to hypergridding, so don't hesitate in asking someone to shadow you on your first few trips - that's what the event is really intended to do - help everyone get comfortable with hypergridding!
Also to mess about, obviously.
Anyhoo, there was some doubt whether our first destination could possible stand a lot of avies arriving all together. We never let that bother us, of course. Here is a diagram of what generally happens.
Sirin Peccable couldn't be there on the day on Atoll Lost, but Francogrid Femme fatale Praline B was on hand to welcome us and tell us a bit about his regions. (freebies! woot!)  As usual, the addresses for these destinations are at the end of the post.
Praline (right) welcomes us to Atoll Lost, Francogrid

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Safari goes Looking

John Snow: Ahhh, glad you made it. I'm told by my old colleagues at Westminster Medical School that you are one of their finest graduates, Stephen. I am in need of a skilled yet young-minded doctor to help me with an investigation of utmost importance. Do you feel up to it? (say "yes" in local chat).

Sonic, cholera, and OnLook might not sound like an appealing mix but for this week's Safari it was a wild ride through space and time!
This week Mobius Grid wanted to do something special to mark the 16th anniversary of the launch of the Dreamcast console, an iconic piece of gaming equipment that changed the virtual lives of many a young(and-not-so-young)ster. 

A party ? You better believe the Safari wanted in on that! To try to blend in on Mobius, which is in layman's terms a 'Sonic the Hedgehog-themed world'  most of the safaristas donned appropriate furry attachments, some like Jessie Campbell and me for the first time. 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Safari turns Blue

BlueWall Slade: Friending is a mystery

               Hypergridding has changed the face of OpenSim. It has opened doors and forged friendships across grids. As much as it's still a work in progress, the possibility to visit 'foreign countries' is one of the most intriguing, challenging, and fascinating aspects of OpenSim. Once considered the denizen of curmudgeonly geeks, OpenSim has blossomed into a cross pollination of creativity, and created in many a sense of belonging to the whole hyperverse, rather than just one niche.

               All this liberality fosters a sense of love and tolerance, the precious values at the heart of the first destination visited this week, Pepperland in Littlefield Grid built by Mudpuddle Cleanslate and Chelsea Louloudi. (Addresses for the destinations are, as always, at the end of the post.)

Monday, June 8, 2015

Fest'Avi II

Last year, Francogrid's Fest'Avi was a blast, a fun family gathering.
The idea of the event is to get people - including those who don't think of themselves as 'artists' - to express themselves by creating an avatar. It was a way to get the Francogrid community together, and it worked. A bunch of local people participated, helping set up the sim as well as contributing to the fashion show. They included Cherry Manga, Erasme Beck, and Archael Magic, and several designers from beyond the FGrid frontier, like Alpha Auer, CapCat Ragu and Meilo Mintaur

Fest'Avi 2014
By the end of the event, OpenSim had more than a dozen original avies that newbies and oldbies alike could grab. They ranged from  Cyberwolf to Hibou, from Akiko to the Arbre, figures that have become synonymous with OpenSim. Fantastic avatars a world away from the humdrum human skins and shapes.
Akiko avie on the road (worn by Wizardoz Chrome)
This year, Fest'Avi exploded with an amazing light show and a new batch of avatars, eighteen in all, by Fuschia Nightfire, Cherry Manga, Imperator Janus, Dora Twinklens, Archael Magic, Zany Foxtrot, Cendres Magic, Capcat Ragu and Meilo Minotaur. 

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Safari Watches Witches and Work in Progress

          There were two official destinations this week, but the hard-core Safaristas ended up on a third, and there was a lot more tail by the end of the adventure than we started out with. Addresses at the end of the post.
          First, off to Kitely, to get an idea about their regular WIP (pronounced whip) event, where builders and inventors can show off their latest Work In Progress.

 Serene.Jewell: So welcome to the Hypergrid Safari! So it's simple - you stand, you rez something and you talk about it.  It is one hour long only! Everyone will get 5 minutes today, I call the time when your time is up. We don't have many presenters so you will be able to jump in at the end. Nara Nook [aka Malone] is First!
Nara.Nook: I'm using Aine Caoimhe's PMAC system to make the cafe in the Greyville Writer's colony more interactive.

          Nara explained how the cat keeps writers company, and can be easily modded with poses and animations. It looks complete, but is a work in progress because she is still looking for animal animations, rather than the human ones she is currently using (although they looked great to us). The audience loved it.

Friday, May 29, 2015

A Crash Dancing, Scope Riding, Anvil Dumping Safari

Jessica.Pixel: I decided to be human today so lets hope all of my hair makes it
Thirza Ember: I feel like hair like that deserves its own greeting
Wizard Gynoid: at least it's not up her bum
Ms Pixel and her remarkable hair

          There was loose talk at the 54th HGSafari about gorean virgins and Mal Burns, most of which I can't divulge.
Fuschia Nightfire: when I was a noob, me and a friend once did a parachute jump from a sky platform and landed in a Gorean village, where she was taken as a slave, and this is the absolute truth, I never saw her again

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

The Supremacy of Twinity

There is nothing, nothing at all, like an urgent deadline to make time wasting seem like a good idea. Of course, we are spoiled for choice when it comes to time wasting, between all the many online and RL activities available here in the Western world. But it seems likely that if you're looking for the Supreme waste of time in virtual worlds, Twinity is it. It's hard to say which was more surprising, to notice that my first visit to Twinity was back in 2011, or to discover it still exists. The fact that little has changed is no big shock, for while someone who's been away from SL for a couple of years might be amazed by the advent of mesh, Twinity was always that way.
Putting a map on the wall just makes it even more obvious (and sad)
that these guys never did get around to recreating 3D cities.

It always takes a bit to remember how stuff works, and sheesh what is going on with that nose??! becomes your number one obsession whenever you dig out an old avie. Luckily most places are empty, so nobody's going to notice your body overhaul. 
You can check out any time you like, but ...
Moving around on this grid makes the Kitely Waitaminutesighwhileweturnonthelightsare yousureyourealllyneedtogotothatsim? room seem positively supersonic. Wherever you go, you never feel like you're properly 'outside', not even when you get to the ghetto. The oversize buildings here make you about the dimensions of a cat which, in turn, makes the animated cats about the size of rats, I suppose. And surely that's a CGTexture texture there, isn't it? Maybe not.

Friday, May 22, 2015

AAA Little Nightfire

          Flashing can be bad for people. But if you don't have a photosensitive health issue, then animated attached art - let's call it Triple A ! - is probably the best thing out there, especially when combined with live music. Fuschia Nightfire put on a cracking display for the HG Safari First Anniversary party this week, and it was interesting to hear a bit about what went into it. 
          First off, where did the inspiration for all the bright colors and attachments come from?
Fuschia Nightfire: I think it was Wizzy's idea actually. We were chatting about the party and said it would be good if we could get SaveMe to come, but realised that probably wouldn't happen, so we joked about making a NOT SaveMe performance, and I realised that with the dancing cat animation and the avatar starter kit, I probably already had some items that we could use. I also have some of her pieces on SL, so it was not difficult to look at those and make my own versions here, like the personal ban lines.
Thirza Ember: technically, did you find it a challenge?

Thursday, May 21, 2015

A year of Safari

whirli placebo: i made it back!! hahaha can i navigate these hypergrids or what     
A year ago today, Wizard Gynoid showed up for the first HG Safari. It was just the two of us.
Wizzy on Week 1 of the Safari
        We left from Craft Grid, because that's where she had an account in open sim. Wizard was no OpenSim noob, she was one of the first to have her fantastic geometric art shown on Reaction Grid, and spent many happy years commuting between SL and Inworldz. But the idea of just jumping about, bouncing off servers and leaping into the unknown, well, that seemed like something that might be more fun to do as a group, where nobody laughed too loud if you were a cloud or had your hair stuck... elsewhere.
Early Safaris were often cloudy. This is week 4, in our first clubhouse on Ilha Magica
          It's called a Safari because

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Safari Lets Go

          Teravus Plaza on OSGrid is where the Safari meets these days, and if you haven't seen the clubhouse yet, please drop by. Southwest corner of the sim, next to the waterfall. There are freebies, posters with info about the group and now also the trail head of the OSST, the OpenSim Scripting Showcase Trail. This week's Safari seemed a good opportunity to talk about what the trail is, and how everyone can contribute, before we headed off into the blue.
Thirza Ember: You can obviously visit the destinations by yourselves, but also we hope that you will bring people you know (in SL especially) who think that OpenSim doesn't have particularly good scripting. We do. It's unstable, but it's amazing. As you probably know, some of the grids on the trail are quite small and can't handle large groups, that's why the OSST is a self guided tour. Many of the scripting destinations are part of a much bigger build. For example, Gimisa's little grid is jam packed with scripting ideas, and Kayaker has that fantastic water sim, to name but two. If you'd like to 'give back'... it would be great if you can spread the word in social media, let the scripters feel the love! There is a group in G+ where you can post your thoughts and photos, where you can give them a sense of your appreciation.
Selby.Evans: and get to know the scripters and their work
PatriciaAnne.Daviau: I have visited a few of the scripting places and think they did a wonderful job on them
Thirza Ember: a special thanks to Fuschia for her fantastic machinima
Stephen.Xootfly: yay, Fuschia
Fuschia Nightfire: i've gone all pink now
Thirza Ember: and don't miss the gifts as you tour around. Gimisa has an inworld search engine, Ferd has cheetahs and elephants, and Kayaker has a flyer - that's a lot of fun.
Fuschia Nightfire: Ferd has the bee too
Stephen.Xootfly: hmm, the cheetah. one of the world's most dishonest animals
Stephen.Xootfly: the other one is the lion
Thirza Ember: note, the scripting trail does not go to Inworldz. But I am sure they contributed something to it.

Thursday, May 7, 2015


Wizard.Gynoid: oic. this is like a pink floyd concert without the marijuana

The fifty-first Safari departed with everyone playing with an Englisch-German translator, so you kinda knew from the first that there was going to be trouble.
First stop, Metropolis grid, and this sims of Art Blue. It's a place where we feel at home, after many presentations and evenings spent in the zoo. Art's impressive collection is worth a visit any time, but this show is something a little special, don't miss the elevator, which is my favorite bit.
Addresses at the end of the post, as always.

A visit to Futurelab means you start out in the hand, which is fair enough.
          Art Blue: please activate voice if possible I will later speak in voice about the moon
Art Blue's Moonrezzer is a bewildering but ultimately thought-provoking show.  Or is it Soulrezzer? Or are there both here in this build? See how this is getting all confusing?
Art spans the virtual world barrier with this latest performance, which occupies a sim at the LEA in SL but is also in the process of being perfected for the OpenSim public on his Futurelab sim in Metropolis. That raises a few challenges as they mod scripts to work in the alternative environment. Cue the booze.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Head in the clouds

       Businessfurry. Yes, it's a word.
       So let's break this Cloud stuff down to distracted non-geek levels.
       Think of an Ikea wardrobe. Now, think of a tub full of bathwater.
       The intertubes are not that big. So when you need to pass something down the tubes, it can't all go at once. It takes time. When it comes to something like water, one bit is very much like another, and it's all moving too quickly for you to notice specific water drops as they flow down the plughole. Doors are small too, and to get a giant wardrobe into your bedroom, it will have to be broken down into pieces and then assembled in situ. But while water is much of a muchness, to construct a wardrobe you need every single one of those panels, screws and packets. Otherwise - well, you know. Screaming, bloodshed, divorce.
        Not everybody knows this, but when you arrive on a sim, your Viewer says to the server where the sim is located: "I'll have one of EVERYTHING!" Not a picture of the stuff on the sim, an actual copy of it. Normal people can't access the items, but it's all in your Viewer's cache - this is how copybots work.
        Why does the Viewer do that? Because ours is not a 'Shoot 'em up, Hunt 'em down' kind of  a platform. The beauty of our virtual worlds lies in the fact that average joes can make, copy and edit things. It's that picaresque, open ended quality to SL and OpenSim that appeals to us and keeps us coming back, despite the instability. But obviously your Viewer hoovering up a copy of every single item - be it a prim, a texture, animation or whatever - makes for lag, and creates all that permissions paranoia.
       But going back to the wardrobe.
       There are many ways that computers can pass stuff between them, but there are really two ways that matter to this post.  One is called Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and the other is User Datagram Protocol (UDP).
        Think of them as two brothers, the Brothers Protocol. Each on a mission to provide you with an Ikea wardrobe.
       TCP is the careful one, he gets all the bits, makes sure they all travel safely across town and into the bedroom where they will be assembled, checking them off against his little list. He only consigns the piece of furniture once it's complete, doorknobs and all.
       UDP is a great guy, but he's not the type to worry if some of the wardrobe packages fall off the back of his truck or get crushed in transit. "Hex tool? What hex tool?"
        So, my question to you - in SL and related worlds, which of these two protocols do you think is moving your virtual wardrobes? Yeah, you guessed it, good ole UDP. Which makes sense, because  UDP is great for things that don't have to travel far or by circuitous routes and when the Lindens set up SL they probably didn't envision a network of independent virtual worlds based on their system dotted all around the planet.  
          That, my friend, is why your hair is up your bum.
           Hypergridding. Or even visiting a place on your home grid. Imagine the scene. A group of people arrive on a sim, all asking for everything and then getting multiple updates every time something changes on the sim, a dance, a gesture, a moving prim. That's a strain on the system. UDP is throwing packages at everyone, and while most of them are okay, there's a lot that can and does go wrong.
          OK then, for all of us who haven't really been paying attention to what the geeks have been talking about for the past year(s), let's just come out and ask: How might all this strain on resources and lousy delivery go away?

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Safari has a Ball

        Well, two balls this week, really.
        We got the answers to some important questions like - is 'Ball' the 51st state? How important are jars to education in virtual worlds? Is guinguette a made up word? Does Pathfinder own any shoes? What is VIBE? and... How many avatars does it take to crash a sim on Ignis Fatuus Grid?
         First stop this week, a long overdue chat with Professor Stephen Gasior, who showed us around REDgrid, the OpenSim home of Ball State University
Jessica.Pixel: right clicking my head made it show up, so we're good
Wizard Gynoid: We are now in Indiana
Lucy Afarensis: oh my
LuAnn.Phillips: sounds like Alice in wonderland dialogue
Wizard Gynoid: why is it calleld Ball State?
Stephen Xootfly: It's named after the Ball Family who gave a lot of $ - ever heard of Ball Glass? 
Jessica.Pixel: wait, the Ball family that gave a lot of money is the jar family?  cause that's awesome, i love those jars.
Selby.Evans: My family canned with Ball jars. And made preserves.
         REDgrid is small, sturdy and has several very different sims, featuring some beautiful and accurate reconstructions of the campus buildings, and we started out by the pixel version of Shafer Tower
Stephen Xootfly: The grid and the original builds here are run by the IDIA lab. IDIA's work has been used for History Channel shows but, also they tend to partner with students and faculty for intersecting projects.
Serene.Jewell: It's really great that you opened up to the hypergrid. So many educational builds are hidden away where we can't see them.
          When it comes to Educational grids and regions in OpenSim, it can get a bit confusing, between the all the names of the various institutions and projects. Stephen is busy here with REDgrid, which is part of IDIA, but he's also very much a part of VIBE So how did he get started with teaching and virtual worlds?

Stephen Xootfly: I got my start teaching in Second Life at U of New Orleans. They used to have a big SL presence and many classes, and I'm a technophile. HG safari has visited my VIBE projects in the past, that's a collaborative working group with Clowey Greenwood, Max Chatnoir, and several others. I happened to come work for Ball State and got involved with IDIA Lab.  REDgrid predates my being at BSU. IDIA lab is well equipped with lots of good computers. So they just set up one to be a dedicated Opensim server. Working with BSU IT to get it setup for hypergrid was difficult, but we have an outside line now. I've recently started a community here at BSU for using REDgrid. Very recent, but we've already had a class use it for a gender identity project, and I have a build I"m going to make this summer

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Safari hops for the best

Meet Tosha Tyran, builder, benefactor and all round bella donna. How did a nice girl like her end up in a place like this?

Tosha Tyran: I got kind of frustrated with all the commercial stuff in SL and I was sick and tired of having to pay for every upload and wanted to advance building then some Italian friends told me about OpenSim and now I think it is really great - I wouldn't want it different I came - and hell it was frustrating too - more crashes then anything but with time and patient it changed :) I started later with Tao and Licu and Lumiere in Craft and - well - now I am here in Sanctuary which is one of the best cared for grids I think it is just great and the owner very friendly and helpful :) and I can build all I want I am present in Craft as well, but my favourite place is Sanctuary.
Her latest build, a Hopi Indian village, is on a sky platform above her sim Fire, on Sanctuary grid. URIs as usual at the end of the post.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Talking Trash

Knickers. I love them. They are fun to make, because they are difficult to get right. When making underwear, a fraction of a pixel on the upper thigh can result in unsightly bleeding edges, and a single pair of panties may require half a dozen re-uploads before the desired look is achieved.

One of the first things that we all fall in love with in OpenSim is the free upload feature. Sweet - you can just keep trying over and over till you have the correct knickerosity. It's wonderful.
You have a similar story of multiple uploads to tell, for sure. But have you ever stopped to think about what your crazy uploading does to the Asset Server of your grid? 
Yeah. Billions of copies of those unsuccessful undies.
"But wait!  I regularly go through my Inventory and trash all the things that don't work or I don't need!" I hear you say. 
Of course you do. But then what happens? Ever noticed that your trash seems to just come back, like a sort of bin boomerang?

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Divine Safari

          Just two destinations on this 48th consecutive Safari, but this was a week when less is more.  That's what we told ourselves, as we all kept losing our hair. What is up with that? For months, hair loss has been a rare event when grid jumping, and now it's back. What we need to do is sit down with a dev and.... well, let's not get ahead of ourselves.


Sunday, April 12, 2015

Safari Lessons

          Yay it's nice to be meeting on OSGrid at the ole homeplace again. 

          But no time to feel homesick for Francogrid, because our first stop this week was on that very grid. Sim Avatar crashed - had to be an omen - but a second top secret alternative destination was immediately made available. Slightly ironically, getting there made even more of us crash.  Word of advice: Any sim address that begins with https:// is bad news. If you copy that into chat, it shows up as a link. People click on the link, and that opens their CPU hungry web browser and... it all goes pear shaped. 
          I blame people who use Firestorm. All of them.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Safari goes extramural

         This week Littlefield Grid celebrates two years of existence, and Walter Balazic and friends are celebrating with a gigantic fair on Littlefield Anniversary sim. In honor of the event they have put up a VAR region, and all kinds of residents have contributed stalls stands and exhibits showing the talent and wide range of interests of Littlefield folk.
Walter welcomes hypergridders
Walter Balazic: it's a fairly large VAR, so there's a lot to see. I've been looking at it for 2 weeks now, so it looks small to me now! The users here love to build.  Mudpuddle put an interesting Yellow Submarine display up. The Germans put a village up, I put a little display up, I really never build, but it's the one behind you. People do things that are geared toward what they know, mine is all prim and minor scripting, cause that's all I know. Some people are really good at mesh and focus on mesh things.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Safari by the Numbers

          Tip Corbett in the real world Gregory Hall put on a wonderful concert for the Safari this week, inspired by conversations with Wizard Gynoid on the theme of "The Aesthetics of Advanced Musical Scales in Words and Music". 
          Originally the concert was due to be on the HG Safari sim on 3rdRockGrid, but the grid showed up as offline until just before the Safari was due to begin, so the event reverted to Francogrid. That meant we missed out on seeing most of Wizard's geometry. These are some highlights of what happened, and here is the link to the audio of the whole concert
          As ever, URIs for this week's destinations are at the end of the post, which alone cannot do justice to Tip's lovely voice on stream, let alone his magnificent music.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Live Long and Gridjump

          This week's Safari event had plenty of competition, and that is a great thing. It's a tangible sign that OpenSim is far from a collection of empty grids. From the inauguration of the new Hypergrid sim on Francogrid, to the VWBPE Conference on Avacon to the weekly dance party on Metropolis to 3rdRockGrid's regular live music concert hosted by Zinnia Frenzy,  there was plenty to do. 
          But for the Safari, this week was Spockfari, a chance to honor and remember Leonard Nimoy, and to visit two extraordinary Star Trek builds in OpenSim, on 3rdRockGrid, and LostWorld
          URIs of each region are at the end of the post.

          First stop was on 3rdRockGrid, the home of the USS Davy Crockett, which is ... Fascinating.
Transporter room on the Davy Crockett
Selenmoira: Ladies and Gentlemen Welcome aboard the USS Davy-Crockett. If you like, we have prepared a champagne bowl over there.
Truelie.Ellen: just a sip... must stay rational
Fuschia.Nightfire: champagne!  oh cool, it gives you the whole tray. That should keep me going for half an hour or so.