Bay City celebrates nine years in Second Life

Credit: Marianne McCann / Bay City

Bay City celebrates its ninth anniversary on Sunday May 21st, and the Bay City community is marking the day with a another special time of festivities and fun to which everyone is invited!

Activities will kick-off at noon SLT with a parade line-up at the band shell in Bay City – Harwich. At 12:30 SLT, the parade will make its way down Route 66, and proceed to the Bay City Fairgrounds in the North Channel region. DJ Marx Dudek will be providing the music throughout the parade, which will be followed by at live concert from 13:30 SLT onwards at the fairgrounds.

The line-up for the concert this year comprises (all times SLT):

  • 13:30 – 14:30:  Christov Kohnke.
  • 14:30 – 15:30: Winston Ackland.
  • 15:30 – 16:30: Oblee (Obeloinkment Wrigglesworth).

The Stage is set for Bay City’s 9th anniversary

All Second Life residents invited to participate in the event. Celebration goods, including parade float bases and ideas, are available at the Bay City Community Centre, in the Daley Bay region for those who wish to be a part of the parade. Ample viewing areas are provided. The music event is also open to all who desire to attend — not only Residents of Bay City

About Bay City and the Bay City Alliance

Bay City is a mainland community, developed by Linden Lab and home to the Bay City Alliance. The Bay City Alliance was founded in 2008 to promote the Bay City regions of Second Life and provide a venue for Bay City Residents and other interested parties to socialize and network. It is now the largest Bay city group, and home to most Residents of Bay City.

Anniversary SLurls

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Adventures, science fiction and fantasy in Second Life

It’s time to kick-off 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 Second Life home at Bradley University, unless otherwise indicated.

Sunday, May 21st

13:30: The Thin Man

New York, 1932. Nick Charles, a retired west coast private detective, and his wealthy socialite wife, are in the Big Apple for Christmas. It’s a place where Nick is perfectly happy getting drunk in their hotel room or in speakeasies. Which is not to say the couple are unhappy; far from it. They enjoy witty repartee and banter with one another, and Nora is every inch Nick’s match in wit and intelligence.

Things change when Nick is visited by Dorothy Wynant, the daughter of a former client, businessman Clyde Wynant, who has apparently vanished ahead of his daughter’s wedding. Nick reluctantly – and to Nora’s amusement – agrees to find the missing businessman (the titular Thin Man). But what starts as a search for a missing man quickly turns into the hunt for a murderer after Wynant’s secretary is found dead, with all the evidence points to Wynant himself as her killer.

Corwyn Allen, John Morland, Kayden Oconnell, and Caledonia Skytower read Dashell Hammett’s 1933 classic, which became the first in a series of films following Nick and Nora’s adventures, as played by the inimitable William Powell and Myrna Loy.

19:00: The Wind in the Willows

Meet little Mole, wilful Ratty, Badger the perennial bachelor, and petulant Toad. Over one hundred years since their first appearance in 1908, they’ve become emblematic archetypes of eccentricity, folly, and friendship. And their misadventures – in gypsy caravans, stolen sports cars, and their Wild Wood-continue to capture readers’ imaginations and warm their hearts long after they grow up.

Begun as a series of letters from Kenneth Grahame to his son, The Wind in the Willows is a timeless tale of animal cunning and human camaraderie – although some in current times unkindly see it as a kind of allegory for the privileged ne’er-do-well upper class (in the form of Toad) with the aid of the middle class (Badger, rat and Mole) to keep the proletariat (weasels and stoats) in their place.

I suggest you join Caledonia Skytower for Magicland Storytime, and go with Mr. Grahame’s intention with the tales – as a ripping yarn for young hearts and minds.

Monday, May 22nd 19:00: Architects of Hyperspace

Humour, hard science and speculative science fiction all combine in this novel by Thomas R. McDonough, who has worked with both the SETI Institute and The Planetary society.

A trio driven by personal ambitions comes together after a dying man’s last words send them in search of the secrets of a lost alien civilisation. Critic’s review:

A wonderful tongue in cheek story backed by great speculative science. The combination of the sometimes screwball comedy with the specifics of how hyperspace could work and the details of the time lags of space communication, etc, made for a believable and well-formed diegesis. There were times reading this book that I just had to stop to laugh. The book reminds me a great deal of Red Dwarf.

Join Gyro Muggins as he reads this unusual story.

Tuesday, May 23rd 19:00: Old Mother West Wind

Welcome to the timeless world of the Green Forest, the laughing Brook, and the Smiling Pool. Here young readers will meet a menagerie of funny and fascinating animal friends — Peter Cottontail, Jimmy Skunk, Reddy Fox, Grandfather Frog and many more — and learn about their exciting adventures.

In this beloved classic, the first in a series of highly popular animal tales by Thornton W. Burgess, children discover the answers to such questions as why Grandfather Frog has no tail and why Jimmy Skunk wears stripes.

There’s also great fun to be had in reading or hearing about the grand goings-on at Mink’s swimming party, Little Joe Otter’s slippery slide, and Reddy Fox’s fishing expedition. These and many other adventures are told in a warm, whimsical way that combines gentle lessons about nature and wildlife with the fun of a good story.

Join Faerie Maven-Pralou to hear more from Thorton Burgess’ story.

Wednesday, May 24th 19:00 The Further Adventures of Gorak the Gobbler

Caledonia Skytower reads from  her most recent published short story collection, featuring the mischievous, yet wise magical creature: Gorak (also presented in Kitely (hop://grid.kitely.com:8002/Seanchai/108/609/1528).

Thursday, May 25th

19:00: Feyland – The First Adventure

Shandon Loring reads the short story prequel by Andrea Sharpe’s successful Feyland series.

Jennet Carter never thought hacking into her dad’s new epic-fantasy sim-game would be so exciting… or dangerous. Behind the interface, dark forces lie in wait, leading her toward a battle that will test her to her limits and cost her more than she ever imagined.

High tech gaming and ancient magic collide when a computer game opens a gateway to the treacherous Realm of Faerie.

(Also presented in Kitely hop://grid.kitely.com:8002/Seanchai/108/609/1528).

21:00: Seanchai Late Night

Contemporary Sci-Fi Adventures with Finn Zeddmore.


Please check with the Seanchai Library’s blog for updates and for additions or changes to the week’s schedule.

The featured charity for March April is Project Children, building peace in Ireland one child at a time.

2017 Home and Garden Expo in Second Life

The 9th Home and Garden Expo (HGE) in support of Relay for Life of Second Life and the American Cancer Society, opened its doors to the public on Friday, May 19th. Taking place across nine regions, all called Hope and a number (1 through 9), the event will run through until Sunday June 4th, 2017, offering some of the finest in home, garden, and furnishing designs available across the grid.

Home and Garden 2017: Alia Baroque

With over 100 exhibitors taking part, the event offers something for anyone who is looking for a new home, ideas for furnishing and decor, wishing to improve their building (or other) skills, or who just wishes to keep abreast of the latest building / home trends in Second Life.

With so much to see, it is likely that more than one visit might be required to see all of the designs and gardens – and with the number of exhibitors, pointing to specific creators is a little unfair. However, there are some highlights worth seeing. Two of these are reminders of a past Fantasy Faire – sister event to Home and Garden. One is a design by Alia Baroque, another by Elicio Ember, each of which has wonderful echoes of Fantasy Faire 2015

Also to be found in the Expo is Eclair Martinek’s winning garden design from the recent Filling the Cauldron event, and very much a place to visit and enjoy.

As well as providing the opportunity to discover the best in housing designs ans itself, there will be a wide range of events going on through the two weeks of HGE, including talks, classes, entertainment, three breedable auctions, a roller coaster  However, at the time of writing this article, the event website is conspicuous for its absence of any schedule or significant list of activities, so an eye should be kept on the Home and Garden website  for updates.

Home and Garden 2017: Elicio Ember

About the Expo

The Home and Garden Expo raises money for Relay For Life of Second Life (RFL of SL). Relay For Life is the American Cancer Society’s signature fund-raising event, and RFL of SL is one of its virtual counterparts. You can find more information about RFL of SL at the official website.

Expo exhibitors are required to have two 100% donation items at the Expo. These items must be new and exclusive to the Expo for the duration of the event.

100% of registration fees, sponsorship fees and donation items are paid to Relay For Life of Second Life. 50% of the proceeds from the gachas will be paid to RFL and 100% of the L$10 hunt items.

Home and Garden 2017: Eclair Martinek’s garden

SLurls

All regions are rated moderate.

Hope 1 Hope 2 Hope 3
Hope 4 Hope 5 Hope 6
Hope 7 Hope 8 Hope 9

SL project updates 20/3: TPV Developer meeting

Nitroglobus Roof Gallery: Black and White Women – blog post

The majority of the notes in this update are taken from the TPV Developer meeting held on Friday, May 19th, 2017. The video of that meeting is embedded at the end of this update, my thanks as always to North for recording and providing it. Timestamps in the text below will open the video in a separate window at the relevant point for those wishing to listen to the discussions.

Server Deployments Re-cap

  • There was no Main (SLS) channel deployment or restart on Tuesday, May 16th.
  • On Wednesday, May 17th, the three RC channels were updated as follows:

SL Viewer

[1:00] The Voice RC viewer has an elevated crash rate, and the Lab currently haven’t determined why.

The Maintenance RC viewer updated to version  5.0.5.326444 on Thursday, May 18th. This viewer currently has a lower crash rate that the other RC viewers (although it has not been out that long), so might be a candidate for promotion. I have an overview of this viewer for those interested.

64-bit Viewer

[2:23] The last major functional addition for the 64-bit Alex Ivy viewer is currently with the Lab’s QA. If all goes well, a further project viewer update should arrive in week #21 (commencing Monday, 22nd May).

This introduces a new executable to the viewer – SL Launcher – which runs an update check at start-up. If there is a new version of the viewer available, the Launcher manages the download and installation – including ensuring Windows users get the right version for their operating system (32-, or 64-bit).  If there is no new version to install, or once the viewer installation has completed, the Launcher will launch the viewer as a child process, and will shut down when the viewer exits at the end of a session.

The plan is to move the crash data capture package to the Launcher in the future, which will give full end-to-end monitoring of the viewer in the event of a crash.

360 Snapshot Viewer

[6:07] The work on the 360 snapshot viewer is once again progressing. A new library has been added, which provides the appropriate meta data so that websites supporting 360-degree viewing can correctly such images taken by the viewer on upload, eliminating the need to process them separately via the web service currently supplied by the Lab.

This work is currently being tested, and should find its way into a project viewer update some time in the next two weeks or so, with a release candidate hopefully not too far behind that.

Region Crossing Hand-off / Caps Router Issues

[7:43] Fantasy Faire experienced very high levels of region crossing hand off problems with avatars trying to move between the various regions. A similar issue has surfaced at the just-opened Home and Garden Expo.

While it issue isn’t new, the Lab found a cause is the Caps Router running out of connections due to the number of avatars it is attempting to serve. New monitoring has been put in place which will determine how many connections the Caps Router is using, and when it is approaching its limits. The data gathered will be used to help better determine how many connections are needed, allowing the Lab to adjust the number supported.

This work is going to be carried out incrementally, starting with an initial RC deployment in week #21 containing conservative adjustments in the hope of avoiding creating additional bottlenecks in changing things too radically at one time. However, the hope is that the changes will in time result in two improvements:

  • It could result in an increase in the number of avatars a region can comfortably support
  • As this is an issue at the SERVER level (not the simulator), the changes should help reduce people on regions with few avatars on them experiencing issues as a result of the region being hosted on the same server as one (or more) regions with a lot of avatars on them.

As a result of understanding the problem, the Lab was aware the issue was impacting the Home and Garden Expo even before it had been reported.

Unsuccessful Teleports Impacting Region Performance

[14:20] During investigations into the region issues at Fantasy Faire, the Lab noted that a simulator running a busy region has to carry out a lot of work to determine whether or not someone can teleport into it, which can degrade overall simulator performance.

To combat this, the Lab is going to change the teleport re-try throttle following a failed TP. As viewer-initiated teleports are already somewhat throttled, the change should not affect them. However, it will likely mean that the very rapid retry TP HUDs (aka “TP hammers”) will break or degrade in their performance unless adjusted.

The hope is that by reducing the load placed on a simulator as it tries to deal with too rapid a succession of TP requests which cannot be granted as the region is full, overall performance will be improved and those already in the region will enjoy a better experience.

This change should be appearing in a server RC update soon.

Additional comments on teleport failures:

  • A queuing system will not be added, as this is deemed to be too difficult to implement and manage.
  • There is no relationship between the size of an avatar’s inventory and the frequency with which that avatar may experience teleport failures. However, the amount of items attached to an avatar, the scripts they are running, etc.
  • The Lab can monitor teleport failures in real-time.

Automatic Additional Logging after Region Crashes

[29:27] It was asked if additional logging could be automatically enabled on a region crash. This is something that cannot be done, and Oz’s belief is that doing so would result in an additional load on the simulator during recovery, and so not be a good idea.

Avatar and Object Rendering Cost Investigations

[31:00] The Lab is continuing work in reviewing the rendering cost calculations for in-world objects and avatars, work I first reported on in September 2016. However, the numbers aren’t at a point where any adjustments can be made to the calculations.

Fun Fact

Oz Linden marked his seventh anniversary at the Lab this week – so a belated happy rezday to him! Some of us can likely remember his 2010 appearance at the SLCC, when Esbee Linden introduced him to the audience in Boston 🙂 .

Oz at one of the viewer / open-source panels at SLCC 2010, with Esbee Linden just visible to the right