2021 SUG meeting week #35 summary

Four Bridges: Summer Quest, May 2021 – blog post

The following notes were taken from the Tuesday, August 31st, 2021 Simulator User Group (SUG) meeting. The meeting was recorded by Pantera Północy, and the video is embedded at the end of this summary. Note this summary focuses on the key points of the meeting, where there is something to report; the video video should be referred to should full details of the meeting wish to be reviewed.

Server Deployments

Please refer to the server deployment thread for updates.

  • All simulators on both the Tuesday, August 31st and Wednesday September 1st deployments will be updated to simulator release 563385, which is functionally and configurationally identical to the 562252 SLS Main Channel deployment of the previous week.
  • The RC deployment on Wednesday, September 1st will additionally continue to process of changing all RC regions over to a new AWS server configuration as mentioned here, which will cause some incidental changes to how mesh land impact is calculated, but the primary change will be a small but noticeable bump in speed for most regions.
    • The new configuration can also cause a slight variation on floating point rounding that can show up in Land Impact calculations under rare circumstances. However, LL believes the impact is going to be so limited, it’s unlikely most people will notice.

Week #34 RC Deployment

The RC deployment originally planned for the previous week (Wednesday, August 25th) was pulled back due to a late-breaking issue. A fix has been implemented, but Mazidox Linden has indicated he wants to comb through the release before passing it as ready for deployment.

General Deployment Notes

  • As of the week commencing Monday, August 30th, 2021, the weekly planned deployment window is to be 06:00-11:00 SLT, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, subject to actual updates being available to deploy.
  • Rolling restarts will generally take place across all simhosts that have not been restarted in the past 14 days

Tuesday August 30th Issues

Tuesday, August 31st saw extended issues across a number of Second Life services, as per this SL grid status report, which were still on-going at the time of the SUG meeting. These issues appeared to be related to a significant problem at the AWS centre in Oregon, USA, where the SL services are currently hosted.

Part of the status update from AWS indicating they had identified the issue affecting a number of client services, including Second Life, august 31sr, 2021

SL Viewer

No updates to the current batch of official viewers to mark the start of the week, leaving the current pipelines as follows:

  • Release viewer: version version 6.4.22.561752, formerly the CEF Update RC viewer, issued July 24th and promoted August 10th.
  • Release channel cohorts:
    • Grappa Maintenance RC, version 6.4.23.563012, dated August 24th.
    • Happy Hour Maintenance 2 viewer, version 6.4.23.562602, issued August 23rd (dated August 20th).
    • Simplified Cache RC viewer, version 6.4.22.561873, dated August 9th.
  • Project viewers:
    • Legacy Profiles viewer, version 6.4.11.550519, dated October 26th.
    • Copy / Paste viewer, version 6.3.5.533365, dated December 9th, 2019.
    • Project Muscadine (Animesh follow-on) project viewer, version 6.4.0.532999, dated November 22nd, 2019.
    • 360 Snapshot project viewer, version 6.2.4.529111, dated July 16th, 2019.

In Brief

  • Rider Linden continues to work on the tools update for the simulators, and believes he may have something that could help improve the scripts run percentage issue, but also emphasises it is currently too early to make any promises that it will actually do so.
  • BUG-231158 “Allow llGetNotecardLine to return more than 255 bytes” has been raised as a result of a conversation about raising the limit to 1024 bytes, which Rider Linden indicated shouldn’t be too problematic – subject to proper review of course.

Monochrome art at Rainbow Painters in Second Life

Rainbow Painters Art Gallery, August 2021

It’s been a while since my last visit to Rainbow Painters Art Gallery, operated and curated by Timo Dumpling and Patience Dumpling (Patience Roxley), and there have been some changes made since that last visit, of which more below. However, I was specifically drawn by to the gallery following the August 26th opening of the latest themed exhibition there, this one on the subject of Black and White images.

More than 50 artists responded to the call for pieces the gallery put out ahead of the exhibition, and this has given rise to a remarkably diverse exhibition that spans Second Life photography, photography from the physical world, line drawings in pencil, graphite and India ink, and paintings, with subjects ranging from still life, portraits and avatar studies to landscape and nature studies, reflections on art, and pieces touching on the abstract.

I did not see any catalogue of artists as being supplied when I dropped in, although individual displays do carry a name board for the artist for it. I’m also not sure on the overall criteria for submissions quotas; some artists have 4-6 images on offer (some even more!) others just one or two. However, both of these points make the exhibition a place to be explored at length in order to see of all of the art on offer. Further, the sheer volume of artists involved also means that there are bound to be displays and pieces offered that will appeal to anyone interested in art in Second Life.

Rainbow Painters Art Gallery, August 2021: Sandralee Palianta

Given there are over 50 artists participating, I’m not going to list everyone here – doing so can all too often sound like a space-filling litany. I will say there there is a good cross-section of names that will likely be familiar to many who visit galleries and exhibitions in Second Life (Matt Thompson (Mth63), Eta (Etamae), Sheba Blitz, Angel Heartsong, Chuck Clip, Therese Carfagno, Ilyra Chardin, for example), together with names that may be new to some or at least perhaps not generally noted as participating in art events – I was particularly delighted to come across a trio of pieces submitted by friend and colleague, Erik Mondrian, whilst Sandralee Palianta’s collection of exquisite Sharpie Pen drawings simply captivated me.

It always feels unfair to single out just two or three artists from such ensemble exhibitions, simple because of sense of favouritism that results – but then, art is subjective. This being the case, and without any casting of shade on those I don’t mention, I will say that I found Sandralee’s work compelling not least because of the etching-like quality contained within each piece, and the balance of light and dark to be found within all of them, from the deco-esque “Lady” pictures through the plant and flower studies.

Rainbow Painters Art Gallery, August 2021: Angel Heartsong

Angel Heartsong’s quartet of avatar portraits, meanwhile, held my attention for the manner in which they breathe life into their subjects in a way that colour avatar studies, no matter how well processed after the fact, can often miss; while alongside Angel’s work, Viktor Savior’s set of Japanese style wall hangings complete with verses in Russian and English, equally held my eye for the simplicity and complexity within them.

Truth be told, it’s hard not to be engaged by each display offered within the gallery as you come to it, but I will say that of them all, one piece in particular quite took my breath away – and I cannot even properly attribute it!

Together We Stand by Heather (I can give no more than this as the artist’s name is not provide when editing the image, only those of Timo and the frame’s creator) is an utterly perfect black-and-white study that encompasses  so much: balance, framing, angle, motif, narrative, depth of field, use of vignette and chiaroscuro techniques, lighting and shadow, and more, to present an utterly and genuinely exquisite piece that (sadly) is not offered for sale, but which fully deserves all the admiration it receives.

Rainbow Painters Art Gallery, August 2021: Heather

As noted at the top of this piece, there have been some changes at Rainbow Painters since my last visit. The first of these is the Rainbow Painters Maze – which as the name implies, is a walk through a maze in which pieces from a number of artists is display and which can all be seen in turn by going the wrong way through it (check the arrows on the floor!). The second change (for me at least!) is that a pair of gazebo-style structures that respectively house a display of art and poetry by Mountain String and another selection of pieces by various artists. Both the maze and the gazebos sit to the front of the main gallery, flanking either side of the events stage and the gallery’s landing point, and can nicely round-out a visit to the gallery.

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Stories, myths and music with Seanchai Library in Second Life

Seanchai Library

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, August 30th 19:00: Goliath

The third and final instalment in  Scott Westerfeld’s Leviathan series, Goliath takes us once more to the alternative past history of Earth at the time of the First World War, and a world divided between the Darwinists- those who have evolved genetics to make animals more useful to humans – and the Clankers, who have built their society on machinery technology.

Once again we join Alek and Deryn in their adventures, this time with both of them aboard the living airship Leviathan. Unexpectedly, the ship is diverted mid-flight over Russia with orders to pick up a single large create being transported overland by a fighting bear. Once aboard the whale-ship the crew set about constructing the machine as the ship continues on its way.

Passing over Siberia, the Leviathan comes across an area of great mystery: a devastated region where the trees have been flattened to form a great series of rings, the corpse of another whale-ship lying near its centre, the beleaguered survivors needing rescue even as they are protected from out-of-control and starving fighting bears by another strange machine.

Bringing them aboard the Leviathan, the crew discover the survivors have been protected by the work of one Nikola Tesla, a scientist and inventor who may have the weapon that can bring an end to the Great War.

As the adventure continues, Deryn, still disguising herself as a boy in order to be a part of Leviathan’s crew, struggles with her feelings for Alek and whether she should reveal the truth about herself to him…

Tuesday, August 31st

12:00 Noon: Russell Eponym

With music, and poetry in Ceiluradh Glen.

19:00: Going Greek!

The Greek myths are the greatest stories ever told, passed down through millennia and inspiring writers and artists as varied as Shakespeare, Michelangelo, James Joyce and Walt Disney. They are embedded deeply in the traditions, tales and cultural DNA of the West.

While Stephen Fry is perhaps best known as an actor / performer with a flair for also being a raconteur, he has also made a name for himself as a writer of both fiction and non-fiction. As a lover of Greek mythology, he has penned three volumes on the legends: Mythos: The Greek Myths Retold (2017), Heroes, The myths of the Ancient Greek heroes retold  (2018) and Troy Our Greatest Story Retold (2020).

In his hands, these legends – from Athena born from the cracking open of Zeus’s great head to Persephone’s descent into the underworld courtesy of Hades or the 12 trials of Heracles or Perseus’ facing of the Medusa or the fate of Prometheus after he betrays Zeus or the vanity of Cassiopeia and the fate it placed on her daughter, all the way through to THAT war with the horsey thing – Fry turns the stories of the titans and gods and heroes, heroines, kings and queens of the ancient Greek tales into an entertaining account of ribaldry and revelry, warfare and worship, debauchery, love affairs and life lessons, slayings and suicides, triumphs and tragedies.

With Going Greek! Willow Moonfire offers a mix of some of the re-told tales from all three volumes in what is sure to be an entertaining reading.

Wednesday, September 1st, 19:00 Creatures of Light and Darkness

Two gods, two houses, one quest and the eternal war between life and death. To save his kingdom, Anubis, Lord of the Dead, sends forth his servant on a mission of vengeance. At the same time, from The House of Life, Osiris sends forth his son, Horus, on the same mission to destroy utterly & forever The Prince Who Was a Thousand.

But neither of these superhuman warriors is prepared for the strange & harrowing world of mortal life. The Thing That Cries in the Night may well destroy not only their worlds, but all humankind.

With Corwyn Allen.

Thursday, September 2nd, 19:00: The Map of Perfect Tiny Things

Teenager Mark is having something of a Groundhog Day life, caught in a time loop, repeating the same day over and over again. He’s been in the loop for so long, he can aid other people by anticipating their movements, and one person in particular has caught his attention: a girl he has come to develop a crush on, and who gets knocked into the local community pool by a beach ball.

Summoning the courage to gain her thanks by preventing the mishap, Mark sets out for the swimming pool – only his attempts to intervene are constantly frustrated by interruptions.

One such interruption is another girl called Margaret, and Mark discovers she is is living the same time loop as he. As the days pass, they share their hopes and dreams with one another, and Mark sees those dreams and hopes as a possible means of breaking the loop – but Margaret appears less enthusiastic about doing so. She also repeatedly breaks their evenings together when she receives a text message from the mysterious Jared, a medical student, which always cause her to leave Mark for reasons unknown.

Increasingly disenchanted with their friendship, Mark starts to return to the perfections of his own routines – but then something happens to change everything…

Shandon Loring reads the short story by Lev Grossman which is now the subject of a 2021 film directed by  Ian Samuels and using a screenplay by Grossman.

21:00: Seanchai Late Night

Contemporary Sci-Fi-Fantasy with Finn Zeddmore.

2021 viewer release summaries week #34

Logos representative only and should not be seen as an endorsement / preference / recommendation

Updates from the week ending Sunday, August 29th

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

  • Release viewer: version 6.4.21.561752, formerly the CEF update viewer, dated July 24th, promoted August 10th – No change.
  • Release channel cohorts:
    • Grappa Maintenance RC updated to version 6.4.23.563012 on August 24th.
  • Project viewers:
    • No updates.

LL Viewer Resources

Third-party Viewers

V6-style

  • No updates.

V1-style

  • Cool VL (Stable) updated to version 1.28.2.37 on August 28 – release notes.

Mobile / Other Clients

  • No updates.

Additional TPV Resources

Related Links

A summer’s day on Iona Shores in Second Life

Iona Shores, August 2021 – click any image for full size

Earlier in August, Ocean (OceanLag) poked me about making a return visit to the Homestead region of Iona Shores. I last visited the region in June 2019, when it offered a mix of public spaces and private rentals – a combination that can be hard to blog about, given the potential for encouraging trespass into the latter.

Since then however, much has changed. Now the home of Ana Cristole (Anais Cristole), the region offers a new setting, courtesy of the design work of the ever-brilliant Busta (BadBoyHi) and is now offered to the public as location largely open for exploration, relaxation and photography. I say “largely”, because there is a house occupying part of the region that lies within its own parcel; while it has no signs to indicate it is private, I would suggest that caution is employed and it is treated as such to avoid trespass.

Iona Shores, August 2021

Like its Hebridean name sake, Iona Shores sits within a group of islands – although these are off-region in nature. Also, it would appear that were this to be a place in the physical world, it would reside in latitudes a lot further south than Scottish waters, given the monkeypod trees that can be found scattered over the uplands and narrow lowlands of the region, and the occasional palm trees waiting to be found around the coast.

It is the sharp contrast between the uplands and the beaches that define the nature of the setting. The former rise sharply as a trio of rocky plateaux with predominantly near-vertical cliffs and steep slopes, the beaches forming an almost all-encompassing skirt around their feet. the house occupies the largest of these plateaus, which is flanked on either side by the other two and is connected to them by a pair of bridges.

Iona Shores, August 2021

All three of these rocky tables has its own route to its top, but moving between the three is a little difficult assuming the house is a private residence, as it straddles the route from the plateau to the south-west to the one in the north-east, and thus blocks a direct route across all three.

That the direct route is blocked is not to the detriment of any exploration of the region – Ana has a right to have her house as she desires, after all. But more to the point, the fact the house is there encourages visitors to spend more time exploring via the island’s other routes. Also, given the manner in which they have been connected to the house rather than being left separate from it gives the suggestion that the two flanking plateaux have been cultivated as wild gardens for the latter. Each has been been planted with wild flowers and offer places to sit and relax, an old well also occupying the top of one of them.

Iona Shores, August 2021
Further places to sit can be found around the beaches, some of which can be reached with relative ease from the (quite arbitrary) landing point I’ve offered here while others might take a little walking to in order to discover / reach – such as the cove to the north-east with it’s little shaded and slightly makeshift hideaway. The lowlands between the three plateaus offer narrow paths between the east / west and north / south sands, helping with exploration, but the best way to find all the coastal spots is to follow the sands around the water’s edge.

Off to the north-west there sits a small nub of rock rising from the waters, home to a small lighthouse. Connected to the rest of the island by a wooden walkway, it sits as a perfect vantage point for looking back and appreciating the rest of the setting.

Iona Shores, August 2021

As one would expect from a design by Busta, Iona Shore is perfectly put together, a natural setting that offers a lot to see and plenty of opportunities for relaxation and photography and is undoubtedly a place that should be seen by all who enjoy exploring Second Life.

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Biancajane’s art in Second Life

Sisi Biedermann Gallery: Biancajane

Biancajane Juliesse has been involved in art and painting since she was four years old and her mother gave her a paint by numbers oils set. From the start she fell in love with both the smell of the paint and the creative opportunities it presented.

The love affair continues to this day: known in the physical world as Mary Sparrow, Biancajane is a gifted artist whose work has shipped to over 30 countries around the world. Specialising in fine art creating commissioned heirloom portraits for over 25 years, and also works closely with interior designers to create custom artwork for residential and commercial spaces.

Sisi Biedermann Gallery: Biancajane

While she came to Second Life primarily as a means to relax, she became involved in its creative potential in a number of ways, such as her prefabs and furnishing business in-world, and through the exhibition and sale of prints of her original art.

A selection of that art can now be seen at Sisi Biedermann’s Gallery at an exhibition that officially opens on September 1st, 2021 – although it is open to the public now – and runs through until November 1st. In all, some 20 pieces are presented, the majority of them portraits, although a neat little selection of famous perfume brands is also offered.

The portraits are utterly captivating in their depth and detail. Several of the pieces include the subject’s pets – notably dogs – which adds a further layer of personality to them. As a cat lover, I particularly love the image of a woman in a red evening gown with her long-haired Siamese cat seated on a cushion at her feet. While the woman may be the intended focus of the picture, Biancajane has purrfectly captured the cat’s expression and the fact it knows who the real subject of the picture actually is!

As well as pictures that appear to have been posed, the selection also includes group and individual pictures that have a marvellous sense of immediacy about them, like snapshots that unexpectedly capture a moment of sheer, unstaged joy or a moment where thought distracts the subject, again adding a sense of life and vitality to them.

Rounded out by a portrait of Frida Kahlo, famous for her own portraiture and self-portraits, this is an engaging exhibition, with individual pieces offered for sale. A couple do appear to be mis-labelled, but this is a minor distraction, and while I would have liked to see some of Biancajane’s animal and landscape paintings among the selection (yes, I know, I’m greedy!), this is nevertheless a selection of start that will engage the eye and mind of any patron of the arts in Second Life and is more than worth a visit.

Sisi Biedermann Gallery: Biancajane

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