This summary is generally published every Monday, and is a list of SL viewer / client releases (official and TPV) made during the previous week. When reading it, please note:
It is based on my Current Viewer Releases Page, a list of all Second Life viewers and clients that are in popular use (and of which I am aware), and which are recognised as adhering to the TPV Policy. This page includes comprehensive links to download pages, blog notes, release notes, etc., as well as links to any / all reviews of specific viewers / clients made within this blog.
By its nature, this summary presented here will always be in arrears, please refer to the Current Viewer Release Page for more up-to-date information.
Note that for purposes of length, TPV test viewers, preview / beta viewers / nightly builds are generally not recorded in these summaries.
Official LL Viewers
Current release viewer Love Me Render #4 RC viewer, version 184.108.40.2069455, containing just the fixes for EEP, released on September 24th, promoted, September 28th.
Release channel cohorts:
Cachaça Maintenance RC viewer, version 220.127.116.119752, issued October 1st.
It’s time to highlight another week of storytelling in Voice by the staff and volunteers at the Seanchai Library. As always, all times SLT, and events are held at the Library’s home in Nowhereville, unless otherwise indicated. Note that the schedule below may be subject to change during the week, please refer to the Seanchai Library website for the latest information through the week.
Monday, October 5th: Running from the Deity
Gyro Muggins reads the 10th (chronologically speaking) story of Alan Dean Foster’s Pip and Flinx series.
Continuing his pursuit of an alien weapon’s platform, the Krang, Flinx finds himself heading into the Blight. However, his ship, Teacher, announces it is in need of repairs and that while its autonomic systems can handle them, it will nevertheless need raw materials from a planet. Flinx therefore opts to land on the nearest world – the planet the “Arrawd”, place roughly equivalent in technology to Earth in 19th century – and therefore normally forbidden as a destination within the Humanx Commonwealth.
The planet has a lower gravity than more Humanx worlds, something that benefits Flinx physically – but things go awry when he injures himself and is forced into the care of a local couple, who find his abilities and technology – if the expression might be used – out of their world.
Despite his protestations, Flinx finds himself increasingly the centre of attention and the idea that he is some kind of deity – and while he finds himself drawn to the less complicated life on Arrawd and the fact it separates him from all the cares and worries he faces in the Commonwealth, he realises he must leave.
Unfortunately, by the time he arrives it this conclusion, three of the governments on the planet have decided to wage war in order to “earn” his blessings and claim him as their deity. And so, reluctantly, he has no other option but to both get involved in matters whilst simultaneously trying to escape the world view that he is some kind of god.
Tuesday, October 6th:
12:00 Noon: Russell Eponym, Live in the Glen
Music, poetry, and stories in a popular weekly session at Ceiluradh Glen.
19:00: Odd and the Frost Giants
Willow Moonfire reads Neil Gaiman’s story, originally written for World Book Day.
Winter isn’t coming – it’s refusing to go away, but no-one understands why.
Not only that, but Odd has run away from home, despite the fact he can barely walk and has to use a crutch. Nevertheless, he finds his way to the forest, where he encounters three animals: a bear, a fox, and an eagle, and they have a strange story to tell. Listening to them, Odd realises he must now embark on a strange journey, one he can barely imagine.
For he must now set out and save nothing less that Asgard, City of the Norse Gods. For it has been invaded by the Frost Giants, and while they hold it, winter will not pass away.
It’s going to take a very special kind of boy to defeat the most dangerous of all the Frost Giants and free the mighty Gods. A boy who is resolute, cheerful and infuriating and clever…
On All Hallows Eve, young Pipkin is due to meet his eight friends outside a haunted house on the edge of town. But as runs through the gathering gloom, Something sweep him away.
Arriving at the house in expectation of meeting Pipkin, his eight friends instead encounter the mystical Carapace Clavicle Moundshroud, who informs them that Pipkin has been taken on a journey that could determine if he lives or dies.
Aided by Moundshroud and using the tail of a kite, the eight friends pursue Pipkin through time and space, passing through the past civilisations of the Egypt, Greece, Roman, the Celts … witnessing all that has given rise to the day they know as “Halloween”, and the role things like ghosts and the dead play in it.
Then, at length they come to the Halloween Tree itself, laden with jack-o’-lanterns, its branches representing the confluence of all these traditions, legends and tales, drawing them together into itself…
Thursday, October 8th
19:00: The Night Stalker – Interview With A Vampire?
Shandon presents another adventure into the unexplained from the canon of Carl Kolchak. Also in Kitely – teleport from the main Seanchai World grid.kitely.com:8002:SEANCHAI.
21:00: Seanchai Late Night
Finn Zeddmore presents contemporary Sci-Fi-Fantasy from such on-line sources as Light Speed, Escape Pod, and Clarkesworld ‘zines.
The start of October brings with it the opening – on Monday October 5th at 12:30 SLT – another provocative exhibition at Nitroglobus Roof Gallery, curated by Dido Haas.
Nitroglobus remains one of my most-visited (and most written about!) galleries because month in and mouth out, Dido encourages some of the most engaging artists to display their work there, and to do so within the frame of a theme she – or more usually the artist – has set. The result is that each most, Nitroglobus plays host to art that can provoke, evoke, emote, and engage on a level that I personally cannot help but find magnetic.
For October, the gallery is playing host to an installation put together by two artists working together under the banner of Dreamers & Co. They are Nette Reinoir (Jeanette Reinoir) – who is exhibiting her work within a gallery for the first time – and Livio Korobase, and they are supported in part by drawings from the portfolio of physical world Dutch artist, Redmer Hoekstra.
Entitled Animals on Earth, the installation is designed to encourage us to use this time of enforced pause in our lives courtesy of the SRS-COV-2 pandemic to consider what is happening to the world’s ecosystem – its flora and fauna – directly as a result of mankind’s impact on the planet.
Modern societies have been treating Mother Earth as if it was their property; extracting resources, polluting constantly, changing the landscape, killing the animals and destroying its natural balance.
Since the Industrial Revolution, humanity has killed 83% of all wild mammals and half of all the plants on Earth. Two hundred species of living beings are extincted every single day. We collectively need to change so many things in areas such as the use of plastic, meat consumption, contaminating energies, day-to-day overconsumption and more.
– Statement by the artists
Now to be sure, statistics and figures need context, and those relating to “daily” extinction rates can be called into question, as they tend to be inconsistent. For example, in 2015 the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment concluded that perhaps some 24 species of plant, insect and animal became extinct either regionally or globally every day – but the U.N. Convention on Biological Diversity put the figure at “up to 150”, a far larger number, even allowing for the “up to”. Other models present further differing rates, and all appear to be distanced from the fact that historically, we have “only” seen around 800 global extinctions of animals (land, air and marine), during the last 400 years.
However, this does not negate Animals on Earth‘s thematic message. The current epoch – the Holocene – is regarded as encompassing the sixth mass extinction level event (ELE) this planet has seen, the Anthropocene extinction; and event that is still very much on-going, and potentially accelerating. It has its roots in natural climate change as the Pleistocene period, with its rolling waves of ice ages, gave way to the warmer, wetter Holocene period, leading to the extinction of many of the large mammalian species that had acclimatised to the cold, dry ice ages, and an a matching marine megafungal extinction event that brought an end to many marine reptiles and fish due to changing sea temperatures.
But this period of extinctions was influenced by another factor: the rise of humans as organised hunter-gatherers, which gave rise to the first wave of over-hunting, accelerating the demise of many species. It was the start of a trend of human intervention and meddling in Earth’s ecosystem that has continued throughout the Holocene period such that within a few thousands of years, humankind has had one of the most dramatic impacts the Earth’s biomass has witnessed.
From over-hunting, to disrupting natural environment as a result of increasing agricultural needs (notably livestock rearing) through to large-scale urban and other development and its associated infrastructure and waste, humans have significantly altered the world’s biomass in multiple ways, own of the biggest being the distribution of mammalian life on Earth, which in 2018 was shown to be 36% humans, 60% livestock (notably cattle and pigs) and just 4% wild animals (source: The biomass distribution on Earth, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences). Nor does it end there; as the pre-eminent apex predator, human kind is regarded as a megahunter due to our predisposition to hunt and kill creatures pure for “sport” – an act that significantly increases the risk of regional (and even global) extinction of multiple species.
Thus, through our actions, we are directly responsible for continuing the Anthropocene extinction, and thanks to our broader impact on the climate, we are pretty much its primary driver. Our actions are bringing multiple species of fauna and flora and biota dangerous close to the edge of global extinction, we have irrefutably been responsible for many regional extinctions (rendering portions of the world and its oceans no longer habitable by species that once occupied them, even if those species survive to some degree elsewhere) over the last several decades.
It is all of this that Animals on Earth tries to encompass, and it tries to do so not by brow-beating with facts and figures or by doing so by being unduly heavy in its imagery, but by presenting us with images and models and interactive elements that in places fun (do make sure you kiss the frog) and which also serve to get the grey matter working, even if subconsciously.
Flow with the thoughts and you’ll discover nature illustrates the Creator’s powers, whoever he/she is. Most of us, however, fail to appreciate nature because we’re entangled in our fast-paced lives, and life’s problems cloud our minds from grasping its beauty and lessons. Climate change, overpopulation, pollution, unfettered urbanization, and wars cause disasters to the natural environment. Little wonder we see less of nature and more of guns, nukes, and bloodshed in our cities.
Statement by the artists
Rich in colour thanks to Nette’s images, and very interactive thanks to Livio’s models and scenery (be sure to mouse-over things carefully – even Redmer Hoekstra’s drawing are more than they seem – Animals on Earth encourages the visitor to consider Earth’s biodiversity as represented by the creatures with who we share the world, and presses us to imagine what life would be like in general terms were we to lose them.
With much to see and do – and to mull over / research – Animals on Earth officially opens to music by DJ Gorilla on Monday, October 5th, appropriately enough, and will remain open through the rest of October.