SL14B: Celebrating Second Life

SL14B Community Celebration; Inara Pey, June 2017, on Flickr SL14B Community Celebration – click any image for full size

Second life celebrates its 14th year as an open virtual world on Friday, June 23rd, 2017. This means that once again, the Second Life Birthday Community Celebration is taking place in-world to mark the platform’s anniversary.

SL14B officially opened its gates at midday SLT on Sunday, June 18th, and events run through until Sunday, June 25th. The regions will then be open for viewing for a further week, although there will be no major entertainments or activities during that time. I’ve been fortunate enough to help out in the background for the event, and so have been watching the infrastructure and exhibitor builds take shape, and I have to say that people have really risen to this year’s theme of Carnivaleqsue.

The infrastructure builds at this years events comprise the expected roads and stages – the Cake Stage, Live Stage, DJ Stage and Stage Left – together with the Auditorium build, Welcome Area, Time Capsules display, and Max Mystery Land. With the exception of the Tim Capsules display, each covers between one and two regions (with the Cake Stage centred on its usual four regions), and offer some amazing interpretations of the celebration theme, and I have little doubt they’ll all be seeing a lot of use during the festivities.

SL14B Community Celebration; Inara Pey, June 2017, on Flickr SL14B Community Celebration

For the DJ Stage, Cynimon Catnap offers  a lush forest environment with tall trees and rich colours – and which hides what feels like an entire circus within it. Giraffes offer a welcome, giant carved lions give airborne acrobats the chance to test their skills, while paths wind among the trees, leading the way to carousels, Ferris wheels, bumper cars – and hidden glades where people can escape the inevitable rush. And, of course, topping  it all, literally as well as figuratively, is the DJ Stage, standing atop – what else? – the circus ringmaster’s beautifully adorned top hat!

Facing the DJ Stage across the width of the SL14B regions is the Welcome Area, by Darkstone Aeon. This is intended to be the starting point for visits to SL14B, containing information, Teleport boards, details of scheduled events and more. All this is set within a rocky environment, with an oriental lean to it. Great Chinese-style dragons (always at the centre of festivals) undulate over and through (literally!) the landscape, or stand on high peaks keeping an eye on everything. Follow the steps cut into the rock and the paths and ways carefully, for there is much to see here. Should you grow tired, or wish an alternate view of the region – be sure to take one of the dragon or balloon rides!

SL14B Welcome Area and Teleports; Inara Pey, June 2017, on Flickr SL14B Welcome Area and Teleports

To the south, and between both the DJ Stage and the Welcome Area, you’ll find the Auditorium, once again built by ADudeNamedAnthony. This year we have a design of clean, modern lines which carry within them a hint of Art Deco. Surrounded by broad avenues and bracketed by parkland, the Digital City venue would look at home in almost any city environment. Within it can be found the main auditorium, which will be home to talks and presentations throughout the week, supported by two smaller forum halls.

South of the Auditorium rises the Cake Stage. This is once again another of Mikati Slade’s gloriously colourful and distinctive designs, occupying the central corners of four adjoining regions. It will feature many activities and parties throughout the week including the Lab’s Masked Ball (Monday, June 19th 11:00 13:00 SLT) and Come As You Were party (Wednesday, June 21st 18:00 – 20:00 SLT) – find out more about these two events here.

SL14B Auditorium; Inara Pey, June 2017, on Flickr SL14B Auditorium

East of the Cake Stage, and occupying two regions, is the Live Music stage, designed by Chic Aeon. A curious design, the live stage sits within a mini urban setting which merges glowing building blocks with Monopoly like buildings. Caught in darkness (set your viewer to midnight if your environment doesn’t automatically change), it offers the neon feel of a city, beyond which, when facing the right direction, the glowing mass of the Cake Stage rises.

To the west and a little south of the Cake Stage is Stage Left, designed by Faust Steamer, and while I shouldn’t perhaps have favourites, I have to say it is one of the two infrastructure builds I particularly like at SL14B. Those who recall Faust’s Stage Left from SL13B are sure to be blown away by this year’s design, which again takes a fantastical twist on the carnivale theme for the celebrations, throwing in a Hindu incarnation of Cerberus, together with some Chinese influences.

SL14B Stage Left; Inara Pey, June 2017, on Flickr SL14B Stage Left

The scale of this build is just amazing; to really appreciate it, you have to cam out; to understand the sheer power evoked by it, simply stand next to the teleport dias / pool and look up as the great armoured beast lowers its middle head to look at you. This build also uses a local experience for teleporting – jump into the teleport pool and allow the experience too be lifted to the stage up on the beast’s broad back.

The other build we particularly enjoyed in our pre-opening ramblings and photo-gathering is the Max Mystery Land (aka Community Park), designed by Lim Pikajuna. Occupying a single region at the southern end of the Community Celebration estate, this offers all manner of entertainments above ground, in the air, underground and even under water. A theme park on (and in) a mountain, Max Mystery presents visitors with sky cars, go karts, pedaloes, boat rides, underwater bumpers cars, a disco, a mono-rail – there’s even a chapel!

SL14B Max Mystery Land; Inara Pey, June 2017, on Flickr SL14B Max Mystery Land

In addition to all this comes the exhibitor builds and displays. As usual, these are an eclectic, tumbling mix of designs and expressions, encompassing art in all its forms, promoting communities, commemorating individuals, showcasing skills, and of course offering fun and amusement or opportunities for quiet contemplation. Many have entered into the theme of the celebrations with gusto and imagination, making wandering the exhibitor regions a delight. Some have opted for displays pretty close to previous years’ offerings, and one or two still have yet to learn that slapping textures on prims that reach up into the sky might be eye-catching, but not necessarily in a positive way.

I’ll have more to say on exhibits and art at SL14B in the week. For now, I’ll leave you with the key SLurls – you can find a full list on the SL14B website, where you can also find the celebrations schedule (use the drop-down menu for individual stage, etc., schedules).

SL14B Core SLurls

All regions rated General.

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Lab ramps-up for SL14B celebrations

The SL14B Shopping Event, organised by Linden Lab and open through until June 26th

Second Life’s  2017 anniversary celebrations are on the horizon, with builders all over the SL14B Community Celebration regions are busy brewing prims, moulding mesh and gluing things together in what will be a carnivalesque week of celebratory activities starting on Sunday, June 18th. And believe me, as I’ve been able to get around the regions to grab photos for the SL14B website, a lot of imagination has gone into many of this year’s builds to match the theme.

To mark the forthcoming celebrations, Linden Lab have blogged about some of the activities they are and will be running to mark SL’s 14th anniversary.

In-world Shopping Event

Currently in progress is the 14th anniversary shopping event, which runs through unto June 26th. Set out across three regions which form a huge shopping mall like environment, which wide open halls lined with shop spaces some have used very creatively (Cube Republic’s  walk through a cavern is a particularly clever use of space) the event features 60 participating merchants and creators.  In case you haven’t been, the SLurls to the regions are:

SL14B Music Festival

The third SL Birthday Music Festival, organised by Linden Lab will take place over three days of the SL14B Community Celebration, featuring everything from Italian Opera to full on Psychedelic Rock!

The dates and times (SLT) for the event are:

  • Friday, June 23rd 2017, 11:00 – 15:00
  • Saturday, June 24th 2017, 20:00 – midnight
  • Sunday, June 25th 2017, 16:00 – 20:00

The SLurl for the festival, together with the line-up of artists, will be announced soon.

Celebratory Parties

The Lab will also host two special parties at SL14B’s Cake Stage during the course of the celebrations, with a prize of L$5,000 up for grabs at each.

The Lab is hosting two parties for SL14B

The Masquerade Ball – Monday, June 19th 11:00 13:00 SLT. Be part of the mystery and intrigue of the Masked Ball. Dress to the nines, don that harlequin mask (or other suitable facial disguise) and  join your fellow celebrants at this special event. The L$5,000 will go to the person judged The Best at the Ball!

Come as You Were – Wednesday, June 21st 18:00 – 20:00 SLT. We all enter tour virtual lives as newbies, and this party looks back to those innocent days, whether yours was last week, last month or a decade ago. Simply put your best Ruth forward, as the Lab says (and also indicate your age by knowing who / what Ruth was!) and go along in costume for a chance to win L$5,000.

Celebratory Gifts

In addition to these events, the Lab will have vendors located at some of the SL14B regions, offering a special commemorative avatar and bonus gift. 

SL14B reminder: applications close May 8th, 2017

SL14B

As I’ve previously reported, participation applications are currently open for the SL14B Community Celebration to mark the 13th anniversary of Second Life entering it public beta. Celebrations this year will run from Sunday, June 19th through to Sunday, June 26th inclusive. But they won’t be for very much longer.

If you are planning to apply, but have not yet done so, please note that exhibitor and volunteer applications close on Wednesday, May 10th 2017; performer and auditorium applications close on Sunday, May 17th.

The theme for this year is Carnavalesque, with the organising team noting:

While much of the interest around virtual reality has shifted to singular experiences, largely fuelled by the pursuit of headset-focused content, we want to remind you of the joy of hundreds of people from all over coming together in one place in celebration, and form a carnivale-like atmosphere that you simply cannot achieve alone. Let’s challenge all the perceptions, break all the moulds, and show everyone that we know how to celebrate.

The lights are green if you still want to apply to be a part of SL14B. But they’ll be turning red on Monday, May 8th, when applications close. So if you are thinking of applying – don’t get caught by the deadline!

So, all exhibitors, performers, presenters and volunteers wishing to be a part of this year’s celebrations, don’t get caught by the red stop light of the applications deadline, follow the links below and get signed-up!

If you have already applied to be a part of SL14B, please give the organising team a little breathing space once applications close. Everyone is aware that people are really anxious to hear if their application has been accepted, but understand, it will take a little time – generally a week or so – to run through everything and send out all the acceptance notices.

I’m delighted to say I’ll be playing a small role in the run-up to the festivities, having been offered the opportunity this year to take the official “sneak peek” photographs which will be appearing on the SL14B website over the coming weeks. This has already given me the chance to have a look around some of the infrastructure builds which are coming together, and I can honestly say that there is some really creative thought going into things and the builds are already stunning to see. I’ll looking forward to offering little tasters through the official blog as the dates draw nearer.

And speaking of dates here’s another little reminder of how things should go:

  • Wednesday, May 24th – Friday May 26th: exhibitors informed via e-mail
  • Friday, May 26th: regions open to exhibitors for building (from 12:00 noon SLT)
  • Saturday, June 10th: all performers notified
  • Thursday, June 15th to Friday, June 16th: regions closed to exhibitors for walk-through
  • Friday, June 16th and Saturday, June 17th: regions open to exhibitors for adjustments
  • Saturday, June 17th: Press Day
  • Sunday, June 18th, noon SLT: Opening Day
  • Friday June 23rd: The Birthday
  • Friday, June 23rd – Sunday, June 25th: SL14B Music Fest with Linden Lab
  • Sunday, June 25th: last day of celebration performances and activities
  • Monday, June 26th to Sunday, July 2nd: regions open for viewing, no performances
  • Monday, July 3rd to Wednesday, July 5th: Breakdown
  • Thursday, July 6th: Sims go off-line.

Lab seeks musicians and merchants for birthday festivities

secondlifeWhile the traditional Second Life Birthday celebrations are now pretty much coordinated and run by the community – hence the title Second Life Birthday Community Celebrations, the Lab has a track record of sharing in the celebratory mood around the time of SL’s anniversary through various promotions, gifts, and so on, often as an overall part of the community celebrations.

In 2015, for example, the Lab held the first Anniversary Music Festival, which they then repeated in 2016 – and which is now set to take place as a part of the 14th Birthday celebrations as well, alongside of an in-world shopping event.

Xiola Linden once again brought forth the news in an official blog post, in which she once again invites musicians across Second Life to sign-up for auditions to be a part of the 2017 Music Festival showcase. All genres are welcome to apply, from bands to solo acts, electronic to acoustic – and the event itself, for those invited to participate, will be a 30-minute paid gig (subject to the Lab’s terms and conditions) at the SL14B Community Celebrations.

Those interested in applying should complete the submission form no later than May 22nd, 2017 – signs-ups will close at 00:01 SLT on May 23rd, 2017. All applications will be reviewed, and a selection of acts will be invited to attend in-world audition sessions. At the auditions, they will have a maximum of five minutes to perform before a panel of judges made up of Lab staff and Second Life residents, who will select acts to perform at the actual SL14B Music Fest. In addition, Second Life residents who wish to, can attend the audition sessions as members of the audience.

The 2016 Music Fest Auditions

The key dates for the auditions and the Music Fest itself are:

  • Auditions:
    • First session: 12:00 noon to 14:00 SLT, Friday, 2nd June 2017
    • Second Session: 18:00 to 20:00 SLT, Saturday, 3rd June 2017
  • Music Festival:
    • 11:00 to 15:00 SLT, Friday, 23rd June 2017
    • 20:00 to 00:00 SLT, Saturday, 24th June 2017
    • 16:00 to 20:00 SLT, Sunday, June 25th 2007.

L12B Community Celebration; Inara Pey, June 2015, on FlickrIn 2015 the Music Fest was held during the SL12B Community Celebrations at the SL12B Ixtlan Stage, designed by Cube Republic

The blog post also gives notice of an anniversary in-world shopping event, with Xiola stating:

In addition to Music Fest, we are also planning a festive in-world shopping event and are actively looking for Merchants who are willing to participate! We had a very successful Valentine’s Day shopping event, and are making this one even bigger – with plans for three Regions of participating stores offering gifts and discounts on items.

The event will take place across three regions in Second Life, between Monday, June 5th, and Monday, June 26th, 2017. If you are a Merchant interested in being part of this event, please complete and submit the  application form, no later than Monday, May 15th, 2017.

SL14B: participation applications open

SL14B

Thursday, April 13th marked the opening of applications to participate in the SL14B Community Celebration to mark the 13th anniversary of Second Life entering it public beta. Celebrations this year will run from Sunday, June 19th through to Sunday, June 26th inclusive, all under the theme of Carnivalesque.

In particular, the organisers are seeking applications from exhibitors, performers, presenters and volunteers; applications for the Press Day will open in due course. Those wishing to apply for any of these positions are asked to read the General Event Policies for SL13B, and then proceed as follows:

** Note that exhibitor and volunteer applications close on Wednesday, May 10th, 2017; Performer applications close Sunday, May 17th  **

The 2016 SL13B Live Performance stage, by Cube Republic

This year, the celebrations will cover 18 regions offering some 200 parcels for exhibits, as well as the core entertainments stages, Welcome Area, auditorium and so on.

Key Dates

  • Wednesday, May 24th – Friday May 26th: exhibitors informed via e-mail
  • Friday, May 26th: regions open to exhibitors for building (from 12:00 noon SLT)
  • Saturday, June 10th: all performers notified
  • Thursday, June 15th to Friday, June 16th: regions closed to exhibitors for walk-through
  • Friday, June 16th and Saturday, June 17th: regions open to exhibitors for adjustments
  • Saturday, June 17th: Press Day
  • Sunday, June 18th, noon SLT: Opening Day
  • Friday June 23rd: The Birthday
  • Friday, June 23rd – Sunday, June 25th: SL14B Music Fest with Linden Lab
  • Sunday, June 25th: last day of celebration performances and activities
  • Monday, June 26th to Sunday, July 2nd: regions open for viewing, no performances
  • Monday, July 3rd to Wednesday, July 5th: Breakdown
  • Thursday, July 6th: Sims go off-line.

SL14B: call for infrastructure builders

L12B Community Celebration; Inara Pey, June 2015, on FlickrSL12B (2015) Welcome area by Walton F. Wainwright (Faust Steamer): would like to design and build one of the core infrastructure builds for 2017’s SL14B?

Celebrations for Second Life’s anniversary will once again be taking place in June 2017, when the platform celebrates its 14th “official” birthday with SL14B.

While there’s still a lot in the process of being decided, the SL14B team have put out a call for builders and designers interested in develop the core infrastructure for the regions, either full regions or multiple regions.  In particular interest is being sought from those would would like to design and build the Welcome Area, Performance Stage and Auditorium.

“We’re still working on many details for the celebrations, but we decided to put a call out to builders since we have more regions – eighteen in all – and plan for larger performance venues,” Diana Renoir, one of the coordinators for the event informed me.

Those interested in applying should complete and submit the SL14B Infrastructure Build Application form no later than Saturday, April 1st, 2017.

If you would like to apply, but have specific questions concerning the builds and their requirements, please contact either Diana Renoir (diana.renoir-at-gmail.com ) or Doc Gascoigne (doctor.gascoigne-at-gmail.com)  via e-mail or in-world.

The Auditorium build from SL12B, 2015
The Auditorium build by Anthony (ADudeNamedAnthony) from SL12B, 2015

I’ll be providing updates, etc., on SL14B as usual during the run-up to the event – including a full list of dates, once they are available, and also coverage of the regions and keynotes events which may be planned as a part of the celebrations.