Sunday, 31 July 2011

Creative Power

Ok, this is for those who won't be making it as far as InWorldz....just to give you a taster.

Best in full screen and HD of course.... turn the soundtrack down if it drives you potty.


Party at Creative Power build.


It was a great night, with good music from Megan Cline that got everyone up and dancing... lively chat and good humour.

Megan the mega DJ.

Sorry if I missed anyone...(I am sure I took a photo of Bradd...but it has since disappeared...spooky)..... we all missed Jeri Rahja who's computer had burst into flames and so was unable to come.

I hope people will return and have a better look... camming around isn't quite the same experience as there is a bit of a soundscape that alters as you move around the build.

...anyway...all in all a good time..


Saturday, 30 July 2011

InWorldz new joint venture.

By now many of you may have heard of the new joint venture that Inworldz has entered inot with a company providing server services....

A bit of further clarification...


"In June the InWorldz founders flew out to San Diego to meet with our host is the company that handles our servers and internet connectivity (there servers here: ..your home)

We were invited to meet the entire Cari.Net staff and management personnel. Our reason for going to San Diego was to firm up plans to form a joint venture. We've always had a really great working relationship with the people there. You can not ask for a better internet host. They've always understood our needs and been able to meet and exceed our demands.

This joint venture takes that a step forward. It means that CariNet, INC and InWorldz, LLC will be working together to further the success of the InWorldz platform. It means that CariNet, INC and InWorldz, LLC as a TEAM have a direct interest in doing whatever they can to make the virtual world platform work.

CariNet, INC has access to hardware and platform services that without this JV, InWorldz would not have access to. These services will allow us to scale out the grid to growth demands as well as use the best in class hardware available to make sure your virtual experience is top notch.

To summarize, this means that CariNet, INC eases our concerns and need for the hardware and connectivity and allows InWorldz to focus on the grid and related software."


"We are very much an independent company. Cari.NET's interest is the technological side of things, so let me expound on that a tad

While we were out there, both companies keep a very close tab on what tech is out there, where things are going, and have a good pulse on their individual business models. Over the last two years we've dealt with Cari.NET, I can personally say I've watched them grow and learn based on our business needs. Things they originally didn't understand, they dove into, and learned, and then able to help us further from that. It's been a mutual growing experience for both companies.

They have zero interest in running our business or diving into our business model we've set up. Will they offer advice they see from a technical standpoint that can help us increase profits? Definitely, which is good news for our residents as we watch our grid grow, we can do our best to keep our costs down, thus passing that on to you, our residents. This will keep up with the growth and scaling, and making it a viable platform for every single user.

It also allows us access to hardware and other tech goodies that makes Tranq swoon (or drool, depending on your point of view) that you'll start to see us testing out here very shortly. These are things we would not have had access to in the past, and we're already able to take advantage of, as you'll see in the coming weeks we start testing those things.....

As well as we'll be able to use more reliable platforms, add more redundancy, use technologies that make managing the grid easier, use technologies that make updating adding and removing servers easier. All things that maximize your time and stability in world."

Probably not a lot more I can add to that...

Server limitations have held Second Life back for years and such things as lag and sim crossings will never be conquered in SL because of the server structuring. InWorldz will now have such a huge advantage that it's success is almost guaranteed.

Great News.

Friday, 29 July 2011

New Sim Show InWorldz.... and party

For those of you who don't know and for those of you with poor memory (like me) ..this is just a gentle reminder about a new build I have finished in InWorldz.

There will be an opening tomorrow (Saturday 31st) at 12 noon (pm I am told) with Megan Cline DJing some very good dancie numbers for a couple of hours if you want to come over and cut a rug.

The sim is called Twisted Isle and can be searched on the map, or just IM me.... for those of you who haven't been to Inworldz before, you will, of course, have to register an account (totally free) ...don't you just love a form that asks you not to use your real name!.... and you may want to arrive a little early to deRuth will be helped by a (team of) mentor/s.

I'll be there for quite a few hours and any inhabitants of the southern hemisphere will, of course, be welcome for a preview/postviewing at a time to suit. The sim will be there for a while.

There is a shop there which sells all the stuff I created specially for the sim and it's for sale only at this one location. The funds generated there will go towards the tier of this and sister sims which will, eventually, make up an art collective sponsored by Jeri Rahja.

If you are expecting to see my more typical trees and flowers you will be surprised as this build is a bit different to my previous sims... I have called the sim Creative Power and posted some ideas earlier about it.

I hope you enjoy it...

Be there or be elsewhere.


Thursday, 28 July 2011

The Art of SaveMe Oh.

It seems about time for me to reacquaint those of you who either haven't heard of SaveMe and those who have, but only by default.

I did a long interview with SaveMe a while back.... here.....(December 2009) ...and I think it would be good now that hysteria and witch hunting have caused some to lose all rational thought to re appraise the role I am convinced that SaveMe plays in our art community in SL and in InWorldz.

Performance Art, according to wikipedia (here) is a concept which is open to debate..."Performance art is an essentially contested concept: any single definition of it implies the recognition of rival uses. As concepts like "democracy" or "art", it implies productive disagreement with itself.". That means that at its heart there is disagreement and debate as to what Performance Art actually is. This also applies to Art in general.

"From about the mid-1960s into the 1970s, often derived from concepts of visual art, with respect to Antonin Artaud, Dada, the Situationists, Fluxus, Installation art, and Conceptual Art, performance art tended to be defined as an antithesis to theatre, challenging orthodox artforms and cultural norms." [all highlighting is mine]

Now, one particular type of performance art was valued by the Dadaist and Neo-Dadaists and it was called Art Intervention...
Wikipedia has this to say.."However, unendorsed (i.e. illicit) interventions are common and lead to debate as to the distinction between art and vandalism.[1] By definition it is a challenge, or at the very least a comment, related to the earlier work or the theme of that work, or to the expectations of a particular audience, and more likely to fulfil that function to its full potential when it is unilateral, although in these instances, it is almost certain that it will be viewed by authorities as unwelcome, if not vandalism, and not art."

The little boy who told the Emperor that he was clothed only in his Ego would have been a sort of aesthetic whistle blower, and he is held up as a sensible sort of a chap. this era where people who pickle sharks and other farmyard animals, or use their unmade beds when they have run out of ideas for a show are now famous, renowned and celebrated. It would appear to me that Art Intervention is needed now more than ever. We are blessed with our own fearless SaveMe and she should be appreciated for her courage.

"...but she interrupted my Opening"... well, ban difficult can it be? Your mute button is your friend if you get bored with someones drivel...

There is nothing mean spirited about SaveMe> I have spoken to her at length and find her warm and caring but allergic to BS and pretension. The Serious Artist is gonna tend to attract SaveMe like a moth to a flame, and if you haven't got a sort of tongue-in-cheek attitude to your own art...well...SaveMe will have.

There are numerous famous cases of Art Intervention, Duchamps urinal being the focal point for a few. The submission of a urinal as an art piece was in itself a critical statement of an august art body. Pissing in it (Brian Eno) seems as logical as the two guys who jumped into Tracy's bed....

I am amazed that not everyone is an Iconoclast. I cannot imagine how you can strive to be an artist and not be iconoclastic. As I wrote before (and it was of course misunderstood by some) there are no rules for artists, or there shouldn't be. If we can't turn everything upside down and piss on it then we are too hampered by tradition and custom to really break free from the cultural norms we were born into.... poor us.

Now... to this current witch hunt... I spoke to Igor a couple of months ago and he said ...It is difficult to know why I log on every day I think some days I am just wasting my time.... (or words very similar to that)... and...this is a feeling which we all have at times, and the reason why we need to have a break from one time to another. This state of mind has nothing to do with SaveMe ..... Igor is not frightened by SaveMe, Igor can give as good as he gets.

I have had several occasions, recently, to note the higher proportion of drama queens in SL than in InWorldz. This seems, subjectively, to be the case. Maybe being Ruthed is a positive experience in that we are brought down from our High Horse and made to realise that in Life we are all beginners.

SaveMe is cool, and amusing, and if you can't see that, well, that still doesn't give anyone the right to call for her expulsion from SL ...

....calling her a terrorist is like being buddies with George Bush. Shame on you.


Tuesday, 26 July 2011

I hate this more than Google+

8 months I think since the Boys strangled Avatars United like a mangy ca,t they are now about to plaster us over any mobile phone/device you care to use in a poorly designed and ill thought out Social Media Attempt.

It's this page that has people jumping up and down especially.... it means that all your friends can see what any one of your other friends posts on your stream...

Now...some people have friends that don't get this is VERY PUBLIC. .... and not everyone wants that.

The JIRA is here. .... not that anyone pays any attention to a JIRA, that we found out ages ago... you might as well talk to your hamster for all the good it will do...

On the Notifications page ALL the boxes are checked by default... meaning....every time one of your friends posts anything you will be notified inworld and by email.... yukk... make sure you get that changed.

...and... almost the worst thing....instead of LIKE which FB has...we have the ability to LOVE..... please...I mean... love? really? Excuse me while I barf.... Cringe factor 9 at least.... (let's reduce the english language to a shadow of it's real potential so I can LOVE someones comments....omg.... only an american company would even suggest anything like that.)

"oh D a r l i n g I LOOOOOVE your comment on my profile"... really? honestly? GET a LIFE!

So....the reason I hate this more than Google is because I don't see how I can leave.....I will investigate further, and, be assured ...if I can, I will.


PS. .. boring 80's graphics too...they really need a designer who isn't 30 years out of date.


Google + ...DOA?

The number of people who have had their accounts frozen is growing day by day and Google thinks it doesn't need to worry about it. However, suspending the odd avatar from VWs is one thing, but when you start on Press celebs out!

GrrlScientist has a major piece in the Guardian about how all her Google account has been suspended because of her name. Now, unlike me, the Guardian has readers in the thousands, maybe tens of thousands, and the word is.... basically, if you thought G+ might be better than FB...forget it.

Now, I would think that any social media has, by necessity to be, potentially, global. G+ has turned itself into a selective minority group of people, which, as Tateru pointed out (re. Avatars United), just not good enough. She has written several good posts on the subject since.... but, the point I was interested in was that if you can't have all your friends using ONE social media it isn't gonna work. Now, assuming that at least some of your friends have 'Handles' or 'nyms, (not their wallet names) then you are basically stuffed if you thought G+ was the one for you.

G+ will, it seems, be the place for a small selection of middle class groups of people who think the rest of us are all weirdos.

Now, Bradley Horowitz, from Google did no favours to himself or his company in the stance he took in his recent the only concession he made was that people will now be given some warning before they are kicked out.

His words..."we’re looking at ways to improve the signup process to reduce the likelihood that users get themselves into a state that will later result in review." sorry...but these people didn't get themselves into A State, you did.

He also claims that suspension from G+ will not result in the suspension of your other Google services... this is plainly untrue from what I have read. If you have a strange name, even if it's your RL name, you will be suspended... e.g. Crap who's RL name looks like two christian names..

It is now obvious that this policy is financially inspired, OK.... but blatant greed often kills off common sense, and Horowitz has lost his marbles here.

.... to start off a new product by alienating huge numbers of people and believe, as Horowitz does, that this is all healthy discussion is so mistaken as to be disasterous and why I believe G+ is DOA.


Sim Crossing ... how it should be done....

Many thanks to Mera for bringing this to my attention.

A great demonstration of why we were all getting so excited about Phlox in InWorldz a few weeks back when it was first rolled out across the grid.

Tranq and Legion have really set the bench mark with the new script engine, one which LL will never be able to compete with. Never? Well, as far as I understand LL shot themselves (and us) in the foot when they decided to have servers in different states servicing adjacent sims .... that, as I commented at the time, is never going to work.

Balpien Hammerer is the genius scripter of this vehicle, I believe....

...well, whoever it was it shows why I believe InWorldz is gonna steal the show .... PhysX next....


Sunday, 24 July 2011

A Week on the Net

While I've been engrossed in putting a machinima together of my new build, Creative Power, for those that won't make it as far as Inworldz next week, I have had my eye on the latest bits and pieces around the interweb.....

Obviously the local news is dominated by Mesh....(no comment) ... and G+, still, the latest being that Crap got suspended even though he was using his RL name... bizarre... and a post by Botgirl has the G+ hierarchy saying "The online world hasn't captured that natural human experience. We think our software begins to do that." ....that had me in fits of laughter. I was told last week of a new shampoo "respects my individuality" and of a "5 door hatch-back that rewrites all the rules", so I guess software that "captures the natural human experience" shouldn't surprise.

The saddest thing is that these people begin to believe their own hype .... as do all politicians.

Washington is currently the target of a large Twitter campaign by people who have discovered that they have, for once, a voice... #fuckyouwashington is the tag. This is exactly the sort of thing that governments fear, as, although it might be cool to watch a revolution in an Arab country, no-one wants their own population deciding to speak their collective mind with no control.

This latest piece of kit that Washington has ploughed $70 million tax dollar into is the sort of thing that could backfire. The NYT reports about a "stealth wireless network" machine that could bypass the Internet, giving free access to Freedom Fighters (Freedom Fighters are terrorists that Washington approves of). Now, it strikes me that as our home hardware becomes more and more like servers, the day could dawn when we could all bypass censorship and control ... bring it on!

On a more local note Nordan Art celebrated their first Birthday in SL last night. Flora has done so well with her gallery, I think, ... it's the right mix of size and artists to make it a very friendly place to show and view.

She has also published a magazine to go with the event .... here. I tried to tp over there but the sim was full. ... so... I popped over to InWorldz and went to a Meet the Founders party where, yes, all three founders were cutting a rug , taking time out from code to say hi to whoever wanted to say hi back. Nicely arranged by Tiggs...good idea.

It seems like Aurora is coming good after a while when I heard nothing about it much ... I guess all that code-crunching is like pushing an elephant up the stairs, a spiral one at that (stairs not elephant). A report here will keep you up to date. Interesting concept, namely, that somehow, you don't take your inventory with you when you Hyperhop, but just a 'reflection' of it... and, although I have no idea what that means, it could be like a UUI of a UUI...??? One worth keeping up with.

All these things pale in comparison with the tragedies which unfolded this weekend. My soul weeps for Norway.

Amy Winehouse, in an almost stereotypical soul singers demise, is a talent who will be sorely missed.

The feeling of helplessness we feel in the face such major events is a part of being human, but, maybe, inspires us to use each day we have to the best of our ability.


Friday, 22 July 2011

A Date For Your Diary

30th, that's next Saturday at noon....


I have been given a sim by Jeri Rahja and I've created a build based on my ideas around Creative Power...

Live music details and a reminder will follow...


Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Ode to Mesh... Fit the Fourth

Inspired by a recent post by Inara Pey concerning mesh which is imminently upon us...

...and which we are told... "Uploaded objects may be destroyed or broken permanently, and may no longer work after the full mesh deploy in August. If you move rezzed mesh objects from a new mesh-enabled version to a sim running the current release version, they may be destroyed or broken permanently – and this includes vehicles and attachments."

Fit the Fourth, [The Hunting of the Snark].

" 'But oh, beamish nephew, beware of the day,
If your Snark be a Boojum! For then
You will softly and suddenly vanish away,
And never be met with again!'

"It is this, it is this that oppresses my soul,
When I think of my uncle's last words:
And my heart is like nothing so much as a bowl
Brimming over with quivering curds!

"It is this, it is this--" "We have had that before!"
The Bellman indignantly said.
And the Baker replied "Let me say it once more.
It is this, it is this that I dread!

"I engage with the Snark--every night after dark--
In a dreamy delirious fight:
I serve it with greens in those shadowy scenes,
And I use it for striking a light:

"But if ever I meet with a Boojum, that day,
In a moment (of this I am sure),
I shall softly and suddenly vanish away--
And the notion I cannot endure!"

.... this is based a little in Fact....

Natales blog tells us..."A current bug can render rigged mesh (clothes) invisible. In general if you come into an area wearing rigged mesh the avatars there can see the mesh. Those avatars that arrive after you, will not be able to see the mesh you are wearing. We saw some of that at the meeting.

Well, that's amusing....

Further..."You may notice that default mesh names used by the viewer use the name of a previously uploaded mesh. This is a bug in the mesh uploader. It is unlikely to be fixed before roll out. People will just have to be careful with naming and pay attention. Some time post roll out the problem will be fixed."

...and it goes on.... ARC will be corrupted, i.e. not reliable... sculpties linked to mesh may count as more than one prim... costs of 150L$ per mesh in upload fees may be reduced... just as well, as Inara reports "Uploaded objects may be destroyed or broken permanently, and may no longer work after the full mesh deploy in August."

...also from Oz ... "During this phase of the rollout, LL may alter the Prim count for mesh objects and cause objects to be returned to inventory – note this might be any objects on a parcel / the sim, not just mesh objects.."

Well, the brilliant idea of enabling a bug riddled feature on a bug riddled viewer on a grid with poor servers could be commented on at length... except... Crap has done it so

If you want to find out what you need to learn to do it properly Loki Eliot has this advice ... here.

I would advise against trying to read this, Artist Best Practices.... as I had to go lie down in a darkened room after I tried... it's advice, from the Boys, Rand Linden in this case.. "The attached PDF is a chapter from Havok technical documentation with advice and information on best practices for artists when setting up Havok collision objects and scenes. Following these recommendations will typically result in reduced Physics Weight for your in-world creations as well as improved performance and reduced lag."

I'm warning you...don't!! You may be an artist, and you may want to practice as best you can...but... it's a Boojam.

...... if I "softly and suddenly vanish away, And never be met with again!'... it'll be because I'm in InWorldz with sensible devs who sort out one problem before creating a raft of new ones...



Tuesday, 19 July 2011

The Press.

It’s a funny thing that the Murdochs have been getting so much press really. I mean, there is surely no one out there who didn’t think that the politicians , police and press all had their hands in each others pockets.... but, like the metaphorical MP found tied up in a seedy hotel, it’s the fact that they were caught that’s the point. Everyone knows it goes on.

...but we all get excited and “tutt” a lot.

The BBC launched a new programme today, pure fiction, about a rebellious young investigative reporter who takes on the evil elite and exposes their corrupt manipulation of power... this contrasts well with the real reporters who scavenge tho rubbish bins (garbage) to find scraps of news, or hack mobiles.

It’s a bit of an aside... and clearly I do not condone hacking in any form ... ("breaking someone's website, it's just wrong") ..but... the poetry of the hackers getting hacked has to seem like justice for some.. (dumb journalist who can’t read is cool too)

The phrase “he who lives by the sword...etc” comes to mind.

With the recent announcement that the army considers copyright theft their problem too, and the nailing of Aaron Swartz, combined with the enforcement agencies/Facebook collusion, things are hotting up.

I was reminded of Noam Chomsky’s take...

“...let me summarize. There's a standard view- rhetorical view, a standard view in rhetoric is basically that of Justice Powell -- the public ought to exert meaningful control over the political process, and it's the role of the media to allow them to do it. That's the rhetoric. There's a contrary view, which is that the public is a dangerous enemy, and it has to be controlled for its own good. And that contrary view is very widely held. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if it's the dominant view among sophisticated commentators on political theory, going back to the 17th Century- democratic commentators. So we've got these two views counterposed.” (re. manufacturing consent)

Yep, that’s for sure.

Currently there is a major problem... there is, for the controlling elite of any country... too much press (via internet) freedom. In an amazingly brazen hypocrisy the US claimed it was gonna spend $30 million fighting internet censorship in [sic] repressive regimes, that was back in May.... while your Government (and mine), deciding that “ the public is a dangerous enemy, and it has to be controlled for its own good “ (to quote Chomsky) continued it’s steady movement towards internet control... mostly via subservient corporations, spurred on by business interests and quoting the terrorist/paedophile myth.

Well, I would imagine that there is no danger to small blogs like mine, I don’t have any staggeringly new information for you about the way the world works, and I would suggest that any really important leaks would get through in spite of any attempt to blanket with WikiLeaks ...

Now, that may just be because the Powerful have not yet closed all the hatches or it may just be that there are so many hatches that stuff will filter through.

In it’s death throws any Power Structure behaves badly, like a moral spasm before finally admitting defeat, (or, more likely, morphing into a new form) and, currently, the worse the Enforcers behave, the more desperate they seem.



Monday, 18 July 2011

The Dragonfly Poppy, a new species.

Yes another new product comes to the InWorldz market, well...on my island at least.

I've called it, as you see above, the Dragonfly Poppy. The petals I think I've managed to get near to the crumpled silk look of real poppies, and from the side they look like dragonfly wings, hence the name.

Some people have already started reading this blog on Wordpress..... which is a bit weird of me, I know...but the idea was to see if I could get better images by uploading at a higher res to Wordpress. They allow a 2048 upload tho I am not yet sure if the resulting image is improved.

Anyway...for a while I'm gonna post in both places as Wordpress also gives me a Google-free back-up.

Not sure what will happen...

we will see.


Saturday, 16 July 2011

Nyx, Elvenfolk and InWorldz

Nyx Breen, along with Caren McCaw were both subject of an article in last month's Allure magazine which I posted here already. The article focused on the Steampunk sim "Courage". High in the sky over this build, however, is an amazing collection of builds by elves, wizards, drow and assorted, but similarly inspired, faeire type islands and towers.... it's called "Kingdoms".

Not all the builds are photographed here, and some are maybe better at midnight... this is just a taster...

I think all or most of the Elf orientated folk are represented here with a central tp point and info centre... at Courage.. the co-ordinates (SLurl doesn't work for me in Iwz)... 199,221,2217.... or just IM me, Nyx or Caren for an LM InWorldz.

The builders responsible are (hoping I missed no-one)...

Ferrators Montaya
moontan Valeeva
CheysuliLir Restless
Stand Starsider
Nyx Breen
Caren McCaw
Snoots Dwagon
Bebe Mahogany
Julia Hathor
Keira Alzael
Dannan Robbbiani
Ambiant Kukulcan
Rafaella Nightfire
Balpien Hammerer
soror Nishi

These are just a handful of the talented people we are lucky enough to have building in IWz, it's no wonder 40,000 people are now signed up.

Anyway... it really is a place to visit, especially for new comers who say they don't know what to visit InWorldz.... then they can jump off and fall a couple of thousand feet to the steampunk sim.... while getting a coffee. Well recommended.


Internet Freedom, a reply.

Well, I like to keep it balanced, and my previous post on Freedom of the Internet was a little downbeat.... (that can happen near the end of the week) to compensate....

Spurred on and inspired by Miso I offer an inspiring piece of writing, as Miso says, for topical application...

A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace

by John Perry Barlow

"Governments of the Industrial World, you weary giants of flesh and steel, I come from Cyberspace, the new home of Mind. On behalf of the future, I ask you of the past to leave us alone. You are not welcome among us. You have no sovereignty where we gather.

We have no elected government, nor are we likely to have one, so I address you with no greater authority than that with which liberty itself always speaks. I declare the global social space we are building to be naturally independent of the tyrannies you seek to impose on us. You have no moral right to rule us nor do you possess any methods of enforcement we have true reason to fear.

Governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed. You have neither solicited nor received ours. We did not invite you. You do not know us, nor do you know our world. Cyberspace does not lie within your borders. Do not think that you can build it, as though it were a public construction project. You cannot. It is an act of nature and it grows itself through our collective actions.

You have not engaged in our great and gathering conversation, nor did you create the wealth of our marketplaces. You do not know our culture, our ethics, or the unwritten codes that already provide our society more order than could be obtained by any of your impositions.

You claim there are problems among us that you need to solve. You use this claim as an excuse to invade our precincts. Many of these problems don't exist. Where there are real conflicts, where there are wrongs, we will identify them and address them by our means. We are forming our own Social Contract . This governance will arise according to the conditions of our world, not yours. Our world is different.

Cyberspace consists of transactions, relationships, and thought itself, arrayed like a standing wave in the web of our communications. Ours is a world that is both everywhere and nowhere, but it is not where bodies live.

We are creating a world that all may enter without privilege or prejudice accorded by race, economic power, military force, or station of birth.

We are creating a world where anyone, anywhere may express his or her beliefs, no matter how singular, without fear of being coerced into silence or conformity.

Your legal concepts of property, expression, identity, movement, and context do not apply to us. They are all based on matter, and there is no matter here.

Our identities have no bodies, so, unlike you, we cannot obtain order by physical coercion. We believe that from ethics, enlightened self-interest, and the commonweal, our governance will emerge . Our identities may be distributed across many of your jurisdictions. The only law that all our constituent cultures would generally recognize is the Golden Rule. We hope we will be able to build our particular solutions on that basis. But we cannot accept the solutions you are attempting to impose.

In the United States, you have today created a law, the Telecommunications Reform Act, which repudiates your own Constitution and insults the dreams of Jefferson, Washington, Mill, Madison, DeToqueville, and Brandeis. These dreams must now be born anew in us.

You are terrified of your own children, since they are natives in a world where you will always be immigrants. Because you fear them, you entrust your bureaucracies with the parental responsibilities you are too cowardly to confront yourselves. In our world, all the sentiments and expressions of humanity, from the debasing to the angelic, are parts of a seamless whole, the global conversation of bits. We cannot separate the air that chokes from the air upon which wings beat.

In China, Germany, France, Russia, Singapore, Italy and the United States, you are trying to ward off the virus of liberty by erecting guard posts at the frontiers of Cyberspace. These may keep out the contagion for a small time, but they will not work in a world that will soon be blanketed in bit-bearing media.

Your increasingly obsolete information industries would perpetuate themselves by proposing laws, in America and elsewhere, that claim to own speech itself throughout the world. These laws would declare ideas to be another industrial product, no more noble than pig iron. In our world, whatever the human mind may create can be reproduced and distributed infinitely at no cost. The global conveyance of thought no longer requires your factories to accomplish.

These increasingly hostile and colonial measures place us in the same position as those previous lovers of freedom and self-determination who had to reject the authorities of distant, uninformed powers. We must declare our virtual selves immune to your sovereignty, even as we continue to consent to your rule over our bodies. We will spread ourselves across the Planet so that no one can arrest our thoughts.

We will create a civilization of the Mind in Cyberspace. May it be more humane and fair than the world your governments have made before.

Davos, Switzerland

February 8, 1996"

..and you know what, he's right.


Friday, 15 July 2011

Enemies of The State

A good 30 years ago the music industry was on it's knees as people started buying tape-recorders and taping music off the radio...things only got worse with the widespread ownership of computers....until the music industry and iTunes found a way to make money again.

Now it's the turn of Hollywood and the TV companies to tremble...but, never fear, the Marines are here....

In an attempt to increase the propaganda against Intellectual Property theft it now seems like the US Army is involved. Stealing images from, say, Walt Disney is now a military concern....

Sounds weird?

Well ... as reported via ars technica here........the recently published Department of Defence document "Strategy for Operating in Cyberspace" uses this logic....

Cyberspace is now a recognised military Domain.....and... ('therefore') ........ “Every year, an amount of intellectual property larger than that contained in the Library of Congress is stolen from networks maintained by US businesses, universities, and government departments and agencies," says the strategy.
“As military strength ultimately depends on economic vitality, sustained intellectual property losses erode both US military effectiveness and national competitiveness in the global economy.”

Ergo.... if you misuse Walt Disney's images you are stealing money from the US Military.

How wonderful for American businesses to have the full might of the US Military to back them up in their petty IPR issues.... that takes some beating.

[Hygiene is such a spooky word when the Army uses it.]

Currently there is no policy of sending a missile to blow up suspected hackers, like Israel does to suspected terrorists, but it's still early days....
In the future we could learn that if you download the wrong thing, they'll bomb you..... that's progress.

So glad some days that I live in a civilised democratic society...


Thursday, 14 July 2011

Seeking a Free Internet.

I spoke to a woman today whose mother was ill but had ‘kept it’ from her children. I was a bit shocked at this level of ‘protective behaviour’ but got to thinking of how censored my life is/has been.

At school the information I was given was heavily censored as was the ‘news’ I got in later life from the TV and newspapers. I realised early on that anything important....I would be the last to know.

I can seek to ‘self censor’ a little less than I do, but, society demands a degree if one is not to be totally marginalised.

So, while I would of course love to turn the warplanes into butterflies above my nation, I know that the world is not a just or fair place. In fact, I have read, “in an unjust world, the only place for a just man is in jail” ... though jail society is hardly structured around justice and freedom, I would guess.

I have tried, where possible, without extreme inconvenience, to act in accordance with my beliefs but I still pay tax money to a Government that bombs innocents and buy products from corporations that pollute, corrupt and oppress. I have to live with that and get on with my life. The only thing worse than a bad conscience is a clean conscience.

The recent drive by FB and Google to get real names linked to accounts has had me puzzled for a while now. As an example... a friend I know has zero digital footprint. Google them and a name from 1812 is the only reference .... another has a name so common there are 57 million references on Google.

The name is not the issue I think. What is of interest, however, I believe is the FACE. With current face recognition software it is possible to compile a database of everyone. Granted that might take a few years, but, with FB and Google pics there must already be hundreds of thousands of people, maybe millions, who could be recognised at airports, city centres and ‘sensitive sites’. Big Brother, as I alluded to recently. ... and the photo links to the driver’s license, address, age...etc... quite a salable commodity.

The idea that government is going to allow it’s citizens the freedom to wander the Web with little or no control, accessing information that they wish to keep to themselves, does not take into account the paranoid nature of the Elite who hold power.

The Elite fear the Mob on the one hand and the Powerful Individual on the other. This is the basis of the politics of power.

Those still innocent enough to believe in the ballot box may believe we can vote to exercise our democratic freedom. Those of us a little more worldly-wise know that politicians are owned. How quaint it was of someone to say, after Obama had been elected, that Only In America could Anyone become president..... the truth being, of course, Anyone With $64,000,000 To Spend On Their Campaign could become president. That was not his money, that is a debt he now has.

So, what freedom I do have is purely in my wallet. I can, in a limited way, vote with my cash. I can spend my time where I choose. I can close my FB account. That freedom I do have.

... but a free Internet? ... yes, I do support the idea, it would be wonderful.

... but I am a little too cynical to believe it will happen in my lifetime.

On the other hand, I do believe that resistance is not futile...


Wednesday, 13 July 2011

delivering a googly...

I have it on good authority, backed by Wikipedia, that this is some dodgy ball delivered in the unnecessarily boring game of cricket... and that is what I did today myself.. Doh!!

I got my knickers in a twist after reading an article about Google rebranding Blogger, the hosts of the pages you are now reading.... and (small) panicked. So...I thought I'd make sure I had an alternative place to write my musings and tried to start a blog on Wordpress.... took so long that I grew several years older waiting for stuff to upload and I still don't have a suitable format, but, of course, it's early days...

I then realised, while growing older, that I had panicked unnecessarily and that everything would be fine.... I am an established name, there's no problem.

There has been so much written on Real Names in the past few days that I hardly dare say anything for fear of boring myself to death. I wrote substantially on the subject back in January 2010, ... here and here.... and don't really want to get bogged down in it all again.

Tateru has a recent post here, and Botgirl has, with usual insight drawn a great comic.... here ...and here.....with part 3 promised...

What is pretty obvious tho is that this is a major subject for the Internet and, of course, Real Life, i.e. when I came back from Hong Kong I couldn't open a bank account because I didn't exist enough to prove I was me...[I didn't have Utility bills]...

It's funny when you travel to somewhere which is 'less developed' than 'the Western World', somewhere where people don't have, say, phones and electricity. People look at you, but ....really look, ... they listen to what you say, and, given a short period of time, they form an opinion of you which they are not afraid to bet on. We all used to have to rely on our wits and our senses, as we do in VWs. It makes absolutely no difference to me, or to any of us, how you dress in VWs or what your name is... if you are a dork, that will show eventually. period.

There is no real authentication of you or I as a person, there's just my experience of you and vice versa.

I've been called all sorts of things...



Monday, 11 July 2011

Social Media culled by soror Nishi

Just deleted my Google+ account...
The real reason is just that I find it all quite boring...

Don't get me wrong, information is a valuable and fascinating thing, but streamed 24/7 through my computer it's a bit like surfing the internet without search. In fact, I feel like I'm being surfed.

Hundreds of pieces of data which other people seem to think is important flow like a river through my account. Why would I want to take time out to sift through it?

After a week or so I have 58 acquaintances .. so after 52 weeks that would be...over 3000 people dumping data on me.

Why would I want to meet friends on FaceGoo who I could meet in SL or Iwz? It doesn't really make any sense to me. If I can spend 15 minutes with someone in VWs why would I want to FaceGoo them? I don't really have people I don't meet either in RL or VWs, I've never been one to keep a constant contact with people I don't see...I sort of figure 'well, we'll catch up next time we meet'.

Then there's this thing about real names... I really hate real names of avatars, I mean, I don't know who any of them are! I get to know someone in SL, then they try to friend me on FaceGoo with their real names, like I should recognise them...duh!! I don't know anyone's real's just an Avatar Alias (and, if I am told it, I forget it instantly). Why would anyone want a real name?

Twitter I find quite useful, like a message board, I can say hi or goodnight if friends are roaming free on the Interweb and they know my location ...useful.

Avatars United ... well, it's dead before it starts I would guess, I mean who would spend time on something that died already once? It was terminated by the Boys when they couldn't be bothered to keep it going..... and they aren't exactly know for their competence re. social structures. I could be proved wrong...we will see.

So, I must say it's a bit of a relief, one less thing I have to do daily, and one less thing for my mailbox... good.

Sorry, but it's just not for me, I have more important things to do and counting my ears is more interesting.


A day messing with Gimp and textures

I spent a lot of yesterday playing around with uploading stuff for Gimp.

The tex below was created using some new brushes I uploaded..

I went to DeviantART and joined up, I searched "GIMP Brushes" then downloaded brushes that I liked... this was mostly done with a couple of brushes by MyLastBlkRose, but I used a few...

...then... on to Guicon where I downloaded the Plasti-Wrap Plug If you need tutorials on how to do that, they are on YouTube..... in fact there are loads of tutorials on using Gimp if you need a bit of further education. There's always new stuff to learn....(same applies to Photoshop)...

Then I spent a little while messing with PlastiWrap and Emboss... I never use bump map in SL (or Iwz) anymore, it is just too crude, I do my "bump mapping" with emboss before I upload, I get a much better effect because I use a larger tex and then reduce to 1024. I seldom use smaller than 1024 anymore, but I often restrict the number of colours to 16 or 12 (posterise) and thereby make it just as fast to upload as a 512 with loads of colours.

Time to do another texture lecture I guess.


Two Years inworldz

Yes, I first opened an account InWorldz on the 10th of July 2009... and as I was very busy at the time with shows in SL and finishing off my RL tree I didn't get around to de-Ruthing properly until August when I built my first tree outside SL..

...and marked the occasion with a post marking the historic occasion... here... then I got the bit between my teeth and by 1st September had the startings of a hosted by the instigator of my move, Scotsgreymouser Janus, or Mouser for short.

This is Mouser, I remember she just sold her sim in SL and moved as soon as she heard Elenia had started a grid... and she said how much they needed trees and flowers in this brave new world......and nagged me over...luckily.

Now, two years later I no longer look like a bag woman as I have loads of shops to haunt... (it was difficult to get good hair and shoes in the very beginning..) ... and a better taste in skins, it

Anyway....hosted by Aliz we had a sushi party to celebrate the day and gathered at Aliz's new build which should open shortly, we hope, for light conversation before a lot of dancing...

I met Ahuva there, tho all the others were people I have known quite a while now..

Aliz who I have known for years and who was a wonderful host, the sushi was amazing...

Juanita of Treeline fame (and brill artist in her own right)... and friend

Lalo (great blogger) who is a complete convert to Iwz and has discovered the joy of building... we first met in 'comments'..

Miso, a fabulously creative artist and good friend...

Nur, scripter, good friend and v classy lady

Scottius, otterly amazing artist and coolest of dudes.

Wizzy, my sis, and geowizardly genius.

...and Zauber, bug exterminator, builder and my first neighbour in Iwz...

....and if I forgot anyone, I know I am dead.... many thanks also to those who sent their best wishes etc... a very cool night for me, thanks.. (big grins)...

So, now for the next two years.....