High Fidelity: help break concurrency record and earn a USD gift card

via High Fidelity

Updated September 8th: the record was broken, with a total of 356 avatars in the same contiguous space, as tweeted via the High Fidelity Twitter account. Read more here.

On Friday, September 7th, 2018 at 13:30 PDT, High Fidelity will be attempting to break their avatar concurrency record  – which currently stands at 256 avatars in the same virtual space. The load test is part of the company’s drive towards seeing “One Billion in VR”.

These tests are handled on a monthly basis, with the September event offering a couple of enticements for those wishing to join in: the chance to earn gift cards (or an Amazon credit), or have the equivalent USD amount donated to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).

People wishing to participate in the event will (obviously) have a High Fidelity account, and be in a position to log-in to the platform during the test period (commencing at 13:300 PDT, as noted). Registration is required, which is offered free-of-charge via Eventbrite. Registration, together with requirements for entry can be found on the Eventbrite website, with the nature of the US dollar rewards specified as:

Every registered attendee who checks-in at the event will receive at least $10 in Visa or Mastercard prepaid gift card, or Amazon credit, or you can redeem High Fidelity Coin (HFC) donate your rewards value to the ACLU.

The “at least” aspect of the reward value is due to the fact that High Fidelity is offering it on a sliding scale:

  • Up to 100 people // $10
  • 100+ people // $15
  • 200+ people // $20
  • 1000+ people // $25

As well as the gift card / credit / donation options, those who prefer can take their reward in High Fidelity Coins (HFCs).

On top of all this, all registered participants have the chance to win a custom avatar created by Doob3D, and quoted as having a value of US $550.

Philip Rosedale at the August 2018 Road to One Billion load test event in High Fidelity

Registrations will remain open to the start of the event, and new users are advised to go through the High Fidelity tutorial once logged-in, as this has a portal that will take users to the load test location, referred to as The Spot.

The event itself offers various activities and well as the means to meet other High Fidelity users, and is designed to be a fun activity with a serious edge. Following the August load test, High Fidelity published a short video of the event, which I’ve embedded below – note that it opens with a brief look at people checking-in to the event, which is required in order to gain the USD reward.

A Carnival of the Arts in Second Life

Carnival of the Arts: Silas Merlin

The Dirty Grind Independent Artist community is celebrating its fifth anniversary over the weekend of Friday, September 7th through Sunday, September 9th, 2018 with a Carnival of the Arts. The weekend will be marked by live music sets throughout the three days, and also art displays by Enola Vaher, Toysoldier Thor and Silas Merlin, who appears at the Dirty Grind as the celebration’s featured artist.

The focal point for the event is a newly revamped venue building, where the artists can be found, and a stage area has been established in the back lot area. Inside the building, 2D and 3D art Enola and Toysoldier is located on two floors to one side of the building, with Silas’ 2D pastel art from the physical world and his 3D mesh sculptures created for Second Life can be found at the back of the building, again on two floors, facing the stage area.

Carnival of the Arts: Enola Vaher

The music event kicks-off from 15:00 SLT on Friday, September 7th, and at the time from writing, the schedule looked as follows:

Time Friday 7th Saturday 8th Sunday 9th
14:00 Shannon Oherlihy Wald Schridde
15:00 Davis Cisiszer Thunderfoot Lorefield Lexie Smith
16:00 Strum Diesel Phime Alcott Winston Ackland
17:00 The Matthew Show Senjata Witt DimiVan Ludwig
18:00 Jamba Losangelas Grace McDunnough The Vinnie Show
19:00 Twostep Spiritweaver Bearsheart Effinjay
20:00 Benski Korhonen Suzen Juel Ethan Kamaboko

However, given that events can always undergo last-minute changes, be sure to check the Dirty Grind website for updates or changes to the schedule.

The art displays are compact, but deliver a good sense of the work of the three artists. Enola’s 2D art – featuring both SL photographs and also drawings – is displayed on the upper floor of the gallery space she shares with Toysoldier Thor, and is an evocative mix of images. On the ground floor, Toysoldier presents a mix of his 2D paintings and 3D art, which is always captivating to see.

Carnival of the Arts: Toysoldier Thor

Silas Merlin remains one of the artists I deeply admire. His work in pastels is extraordinary, and while perhaps a little on the small side, the pieces presented at the Dirty Grind serve as a welcome introduction to his 2D work for those unfamiliar with it – and I do recommend seeking his art out whenever you have the opportunity to do so. His 3D work is perhaps more familiar to people in Second Life, being very popular among collectors, and the pieces he’s selected for this exhibition again present a good cross-section of his sculptures for those wishing to familiarise themselves with his 3D work.

So, do make a point of hopping along to the Dirty Grind over the weekend and wishing them a happy anniversary.

Carnival of the Arts: Silas Merlin

SLurl Details

RFL of SL adjusts fund-raising season for 2019 and beyond

via slrelayinfo.com

Following the open house meetings with volunteers on Wednesday, September 5th, the RFL of SL organisers announced that from 2019, the fund-raising season in Second Life will be shifting dates somewhat.

The revised dates will see the season commence in mid-February and run for 16 weeks, culminating in an Event Weekend in June of each year.

This means that for 2019, the season will commence at 10:00am, on Saturday, February 16th, 2019, and will run through until the weekend of Saturday, June 8th, 2018, and the RFL of SL signature 24-hour event.

Prior to the open house meetings, it has been put forward that the season’s primary event  – the Relay Weekend – should be moved from July of each year, which is seen as being a period when Second Life tends to be quieter that usual, due to many in the northern hemisphere being on vacation or enjoying summer breaks, etc., to earlier in the year. May was initially suggested, as this is the month in which the American Cancer Society holds it’s signature global fund-raising event.

While the May suggestion for the final event of the season is not going ahead, the revised dates for the season mark a significant change for RFL of SL’s signature weekend, with Stingray Raymaker, Director of the American Cancer Society’s activities in Second Life, noting:

This will be the first time in the history of the event that it will be held in June … Our volunteers all had an opportunity to weigh in on this decision and the overwhelming feedback was in favour of holding Relay For Life of Second Life in June because it will allow our season to start earlier, when more residents are logged in and active.

The June date also allows for more of a break period between the RFL of SL signature event and the “mega” events such as Fantasy Faire, which takes place in March / April and the Sci Fi convention, which occurs in April / May, than would have been the case had it been moved to May as had originally been suggested.

More details on the activities taking place during the RFL of SL 2019 season will be posted via the official RFL of SL website, and I’ll continue to provide notifications and review through these pages.

Relay For Life fund-raising helps the American Cancer Society to provide access to support, information, resources, and services to cancer patients, survivors, and caregivers in Second Life. Every resident, group, merchant, and community in Second Life is welcome and encouraged to get involved in the grid’s largest and most impactful campaign to fight cancer.

Those wishing to receive updates and event information are invited to join RFL of SL’s in-world group, or join the RFL of SL Scribo board at the American Cancer Society headquarters.

Sea Monsters in Second Life

Sea Monsters

Update: Sea Monsters has closed. SLurls have therefore been removed from this article.

Open through until the end of September 2018, is Sea Monsters by Citta Wiskee. Created on a homestead region, it forms both an art exhibition and a place to visit, and offers a unique environment for explorers.

Sitting under a stormy sky lies a series of green islands caught within a dark sea. The largest of these islands is ringed by the others, and forms the landing point. Wooded and devoid of buildings, it is home to little water drop spirits, with more scattered across several of the other islands. Tiny and white, these little spirits offer a greeting to travellers or play instruments or paddle leaf boats on a pond or simply watch / listen. But they are not the only inhabitants of this region islands; there are others around the islands and some quite literally watching over them.

Sea Monsters

Look up, and you’ll see glowing jellyfish “swimming” through the air – the clouds high above them looking so much like waves of the ocean when seen from below. Light beams seem to penetrate the clouds, eddying and swirling in circles as dust floats, plankton-like through the air, while on the horizon a constellation of pinpoint lights maps the outline of a humpback whale. But these are not what is likely to hold your attention.

Look around the sky, and you’ll find two actual humpback whales floating in the air, heads dipped towards the island as they look back at you benignly. Not far from them, circling slowly above the  dark waters is a plump blue whale carrying a garden on its back. Click on it, and you can sit on a couple of poses to ride with it – or click the rope ladder hanging from the whale’s flank to ride daredevil-like.

Sea Monsters

There is no direct way between the islands other by flying, which is a little bit of a shame, but each offers something of its own little vignette to be enjoyed. On one a piano awaits a player, on another a swing seeks a rider, while on all of them more little water drop spirits can be found. One of these islands is home to a little movie theatre, showing an odd little slide-show film, cushions set before the screen for those who want to watch.

And the art? That lies underwater, and potentially easily missed for those who don’t look. Arcing around the east side of the central island is a submerged gallery displaying Citta’s art. Most of the seventeen images in the display reflect the theme of the region (or is that the theme of the region reflects their content?), with whales and other sea creates prominent within them. All are presented on mesh “paper” that appears to be flexed by the watery currents and include the play of water over their faces.

Sea Monsters

This gallery space, with a drowned woodland bordering one side, forms a garden-like space, glowing planets forming a soft carpet among which can be found ruins and places where more water drop spirits play. Overhead, beluga and humpback whales share the waters with rays and schools of small fish.

The art itself is reflective of moods or feeling – notably being on one’s own whilst wishing for something. As such, they are quite able to strum the heartstrings whilst also being beautifully framed and presented to visitors, the muted colours adding to the stories they have to tell. Again, it would be nice to have a more obvious way of moving between island and underwater gallery other than flying, but this is genuinely a very minor point.

Sea Monstershitching a ride

When you have done exploring and viewing, but don’t want to leave, keep an eye out for the paper boats floating on the water. They offer places to sit and reflect for one or two people.

An atmospheric, otherworldly setting, offering opportunities for photography as well as presenting some evocative art of its own, Sea Monsters makes for an entrancing visit.

SLurl Details

  • Sea Monsters (Yankari Island, rated: Moderate)