Linden Lab announces Second Life Places available

Second Life Places

On Thursday, March 29th, Linden Lab announced the official launch of Second Life Places, making the programme available to land holders in-world.

First announced in a beta programme in January 2017 (see here for more), Places  essentially allows region and parcel owners to create a web browsable page (hosted by the Lab) for their location(s) in-world. These pages can then be shared through blogs, websites, etc.

Included with each page are buttons to allow visitors to the page to launch their viewer and teleport directly to the location (assuming they are Second Life users – if not, they’ll have to sign-up  via the provided link to the main sign-up process).

In order for you to be able to use the Places pages to promote your in-world locations, certain criteria must be met:

  • You must own the parcel / region in question OR you must be assigned a the group ability to Toggle ‘Show Place in Search’ And Set Category within the group owning the land
  • About Land > Show Place in Search must be checked (recurring fee of L$30 a week).

Essential links for finding more information on Places pages are:

Note you may have to log-in to Places when you open the page.

Options on the page are controlled via a menu towards the top right corner, which can be seen when you are logged-in ( highlighted in red, below) – providing you have land which meets the requirements to have one or more Places pages.

The menu options – available to those who have locations in-world which meet the criteria for setting-up Associated Places

The options are pretty self-explanatory:

  • My Places – will take you to a list of locations (regions and parcel in-world) for which you can set-up Places pages.  Clicking it will take you to a listing of the pages, and those you can edit will have the Edit option enabled
  • Upload Spherical – allows you to upload the ZIP file from a 360-degree snapshot you have taken of the location with the Lab’s 360-degree snapshot viewer – of which more below
  • Logout – logs you out of Places.
A Places listing with the Edit option highlighted

I’ve not had a chance to drive things in detail, but one minor issue I noted was that this listing  appears to list Holly Kai Park as Adult, when it is in fact Moderate – which is correctly reporting in the actual page for the region.

The Edit option opens a basic page layout for a Place to which you can add details – text, images, video, etc. Again, see the Knowledge Base article for more details.

As noted above, the Upload Spherical option allows you to upload a 360-degree snapshot of a location captured using the 360-snapshot viewer. However, with this, and at this point in time, it is important to note that:

  • The 360-snapshot viewer is currently only a project viewer, and is awaiting significant update. You can find it on the Second Life Alternate Viewers listing page.
  • I have an overview of the 360-degree snapshot viewer available, but please note that it refers to the initial release (the release prior to the one available at the time of writing this article), and functionality in the viewer may have changed. I’ve also not had an opportunity to test the Upload Spherical capability with the current 360-snapshot project viewer, and so offer no guarantee the capability works.

I’ll have a more in-depth look at Places and setting them up in due course, hopefully including the updated 360-snapshot viewer, once it is available.

Wednesday, March 29th: VWBPE 2017 kicks-off

Image courtesy of VWBPE

The 2017  Virtual Worlds Best Practice in Education (VWBPE) conference opens its gates on Wednesday, March 29th and will run through until  Saturday April 1st, 2017 inclusive. A grass-roots community event focusing on education in immersive virtual environments, VWBPE attracts 2200-3500 educational professionals from around the world each year.

2017 is a special year for VWBPE, marking its tenth anniversary. With this in mind, the overarching them for the four days is that of Legacy. Taking place over six regions in Second Life, the conference covers presentations, workshops, demonstrations, and social events with the focus on using virtual environments for education and learning.

You can see the full event schedule at the VWBPE website. However, the keynote presentations will be from (all times SLT), which take place in the VWBPE Main auditorium:

  • Wednesday, March 29th, 2017 17:00:  Dr. Celia Pearce (SL: Artemesia Sandgrain) – The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same: Twenty Years in Virtual Worlds
  • Firday, March 31st, 2017 13:00: Chris Dede (SL: Chris Olejniczak) – How Immersion in Virtual and Augmented Worlds Helps Students in the Real World
  • Saturday, April 1st, 2017 16:00: John Lester (SL: Pathfinder Lester) – Beyond Escapism: Virtual Worlds, Vulnerable Populations and Social Good
VWBPE 2017

In addition, watch out for the following:

  • Thursday, March 30, 2017, 08:00 – The Legacy Panel – the panel will take a look back over the past and forward to the future, not only with virtual conferences, but also with education in virtual environments in general. The discussion will range from challenges to possibilities, the evolution of the conference, and the technology that made it possible.
  • Above the book: two special sessions featuring Ebbe Altberg, Linden Lab’s CEO and video documentarian and roving reporter, Draxtor Despres. These sessions can only be accessed directly by those who submitted questions. However, they will be livestreamed on the VWBPE You Tube channel, and the details are:
    • Wednesday, March 29th, 2017 13:00:  Ebbe Altberg (SL: Ebbe Linden) – A Conversation about Education and Second Life
    • Saturday, April 1st, 2017 15:00: Bernhard Drax (SL: Draxtor Despres) – Will VR Matter in Education? Lessons Learned from a Second Life Documentarian’s 10 Year Life
  • The Quadrivium:  “the four ways”, to the ancient Greeks it combined space, time, harmony, and science to develop applied critical and creative approaches to issues that required innovative thinking, solutions, and practical mechanisms in an ever-changing world. VWBPE’s Quadrivium It provides an opportunity to share and contribute to the scholarly pursuit of knowledge through interaction with a community of peers in order to develop real solutions to real problems. find out more at the VWBPE Quadrivium schedule page.

VWBPE 2017 – part of the undersea social area

Additional Links

SL project updates 2017 13/1: server, viewer

Storybrooke Gardensblog post

Server Deployments

As always, please refer to the server deployment thread for the latest information.

  • There was no update to the Main (SLS) channel on Tuesday, March 28th, as there had been no RC deployment in week #12. As there had been a deployment to this channel in week #12, it was not restarted.
  • On Wednesday, March 29th, the three RC channels should receive a new server maintenance package, primarily comprising a small update to asset metrics stats logging.

SL Viewer

The current viewers / candidates remain as:

  • Current Release version: 5.0.3.324435, dated March 13th – snapshots to e-mail hotfix
  • Release channel cohorts:
    • Maintenance RC viewer version 5.0.4.324882 released on March 23rd – avatar rendering and other updates – overview
    • Voice RC viewer version 5.0.4.324770 released on March 20th – several improvements to voice
  • Project viewers:
    • Project Alex Ivy (LXIV), 64-bit project viewer updated to version 5.1.0.503537 on March 17th
    • 360-degree snapshot viewer updated to version 4.1.3.321712 on November 23rd, 2016 – ability to take 360-degree panoramic images – hands-on review
  • Obsolete platform viewer version 3.7.28.300847 dated May 8th, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7.

Other Items

Script Editor Minor Bug

A minor, but irritating bug has been noted when working with the script editor. It is described as:

Open a script, select a reserved word, go to “help” > “keyword help”, minimize the wiki, minimise the script. Observe, you can’t open them individually.

The issue repros in both the official viewer and Firestorm, so is likely to be common to most viewers. A JIRA on the issue is expected.