September 22nd, 2011

Building and Moving and Mermaids - Oh MY! (or subtitled "random")

I haven't posted in quite awhile because of lots of activity on both SL and Inworldz. On the SL side, we became a part of the Five Islands Group headed by Crap Mariner, and are based on Isis Cove. We (Willy, Nikitta, and I) share the island with one other, and the prims and payments are divvied up between us - half for us, half for Razzo. We get to build on the surface and in the oceans, and Razzo gets 2000M up.

Lately I've taken an especial interest in merfolk. It all started with Nikitta dressing as a mermaid and setting up a very pretty little area underwater on one coast side of our island. I decided to join in, and found a world that was creative, colorful, and very wonderful. I even managed to convince Willy to come swim with me; his post shows some pictures of both of us as merfolk.

I have been reading up on the history and mythology of merfolk. Hans Christian Anderson wrote a very sad little tale called The Little Mermaid where a young mermaid falls madly in love with a land-loving prince. She falls for him when the ship he is on breaks up in high seas and she rescues him. She places him on the shore near a religious institution, where several young women find him and nurse him back to health.

She makes a bargain with a sea witch and gets a potion that turns her tail into legs, but as a price, the witch took her tongue, and therefore, her beautiful singing voice. She stays with the prince for many years as a trusted and loved companion, but their love was not to see fruition. He had fallen for the young lady he remembered first seeing upon waking on that beach so long ago...and finding that she was a princess in a nearby realm, he marries her.

The bargain with the witch said that the mermaid had to get the prince to fall in love with her and marry her; then, she would acquire a soul and go to heaven upon her death. If she failed to do this, she would become as the froth on the sea.

The day after the prince married the princess, the little mermaid got ready to toss herself in the sea and become the foam that all other mermaids become, because they don't have a redeemable soul. Her sisters showed up with a blade that, if she stabbed the prince through the heart, she could regain her tail and live out her life as a mermaid once again. Her love for the prince was so great, she couldn't go through with it, and tossed the blade into the water, her body soon following. She died, but was greeted with another, more favorable outcome. I'll let you read the story to find out the end.

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On a few more serious notes...

I found myself disappointed today. I was "remotely" yelled at (in other words, it was a general announcement, but I know where it came from) for daring to say someone's product was better than someone else's. It wasn't a put down, it was an honest criticism, but I guess you're not allowed to have those in a group chat. Oh well. Guess we can toss out the idea of collaboration to make things generally better, too.

I've discovered a few more things about mesh and the viewers that can show it.

First of all, any mesh that is rigged to the skeleton of an avatar cannot be resized, which means that rigged clothing makes you change your avi dimensions, rather than the other way around. Many people are not happy with this for the obvious reasons. Who wants a shape like everyone else's? New World Notes has a good article on this.

There's also the matter of "prim equivalence". One blogger whose post I can't seem to chase down right now pointed out that if you bring in a mesh object that has the prim equivalence of one prim - and you enlarge it - the prim equivalence increases, but not in any sort of predictable manner. Also, sizing it down doesn't guarantee your prim equivalence will decrease as well. Many are still scratching their heads, trying to figure out the formula being used. In the meantime, most sculpts and regular prims work as good or better than mesh.

Then there's the problem of a computer having to have SSE2 compatibility to use V2/V3 code.

My older machine was SSE2 compatible as is my new one, but there are a lot of folks out there getting into SL with the computative equivalent of two cans tied together with string. WTF, Linden Lab? I thought you were smart enough to want to accomodate the majority of computer users. Others are guesstimating that 1/3 or greater of SL users won't be able to log in, once they're forced into V3 viewers for good.

As I said to someone recently, there are always the OpenSim grids.

Lastly here we go again with LL offering up new shineys before old problems are fixed. Seems they've deprecated something in OpenGL that causes a big ka-boom for users with certain kinds of NVIDIA graphics cards. Way to go, Linden Lab! You've managed to piss of another whole selection of users!

Personally, I'd just like to be happy if I wasn't kicked half a dozen times during my extended session, especially if I am dressed and acting as a mermaid. I don't know if it's the fact that I'm in the water, the AO, or a combination of all - but it never fails. I especially get kicked if I'm on a V3-compatible viewer. Now, I know Firestorm is still very much in beta, and I know they rushed out the latest because people were screaming about not seeing mesh or being able to build with megas - but ffs why does it keep kicking me?

And WTF is this business with "the system logged you out because you tried to log in from another location"? That seems to be a new error with the advent of V2 code. I've gotten it now and then ever since I first tried a V2 viewer, whether it's SL's or someone else's. You tend to get this error if you are unceremoniously kicked offline and try to log back in. First, you get the standard schtick about the region logging off. Then you get this other error which significantly prolongs your ability to get back inworld.

I don't get that error on Phoenix, so what are you doing different with the V2 codebase, Linden Lab?

Speaking of Phoenix, I'm back on it again, till the Phoenix folks get a chance to fix all the errors in Firestorm Beta. I can't build worth a shit using SL V2/V3. Phoenix can't see mesh, but it DOES allow you to build megas. And it doesn't hand me my ass once every hour or two. It kicks me, but it takes longer and I don't get that crazy error I detailed above.

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I was reading Crap's blog and it seems there was a boat race we weren't aware of. Too bad nobody showed up, it would've been fun. Let's see what happens this coming Saturday.

I am starting to make little things for sale that work well with underwater areas. Stay tuned.
kitty

My tweets

kitty

#nymwars - Why are some so naive?

#nymwars

I don't use my legal name on the Internet and I never have.

99% of my online friends know me by a pseudonym, and most don't know my legal name.

I use a pseudonym on Facebook and nobody seems to mind. Contrary to the belief of some, using a pseudonym does not inspire me to be crass, racist, bigoted, or just plain mean.

I use a pseudonym because I am a woman who has been stalked from Internet sources, all the way into concrete life.

Nothing scares you quite as much as the idea that some crazed Internet lunatic may be following you with a gun, intent on silencing you, once and for all.

If celebrities can use pseudonyms, why can't I? Do the celebs throw all common courtesy out the window because they're using one? Some do, I know - but they'd be just as crude and rude no matter what name they used.

Today I was reading an article on Google+ which shows just how naive some people really are, despite all the warnings and terabytes of information out there that it is NOT safe to use your real identity on the 'net. I saw some raise the issue of "What do you want to say that you're afraid to say under your real name?" for instance. Um...ever been an activist for some cause that has its detractors? Ever been stalked to the point where someone claims to have your real address and is passing it to others who could pose a real danger to you? Ever been divorced or have left an abusive partner that you don't want to have track you down? Those are just a few reasons why someone would post under a pseudonym and it has absolutely nothing to do with being afraid to own one's own words.

Basically, anyone who is not a white, privileged male from a Western country can find reasons not to use their real name on the Internet. Heck - even some of those have reasons. Ever say something on your G+ account that you wouldn't want a future boss to see, or your current boss to see? Ever bitch about something at work? Ever criticize some workplace policy, or lack of?

Those who claim that it's "right" to use your legal name on the Internet have obviously been lucky enough never to have been a target of others who would want to hurt them. Give it time; sooner or later, they'll say something someone else considers unpopular and it'll be brought to their attention at a most embarassing time.

I have used nyms since I got involved with the public Internet near its launch. Right from the start, you are told not to use your real name. Bulletin Board Systems expected you to use a pseudonym. IRC chat, the basis of all other popular chat systems today, expected you to use a nym. Kids are told never to use their legal name on the 'net because it could encourage pedophiles. How many young users of Myspace were bullied because they used their real name, and bullies found them? How many have committed suicide?

Do you really think that kind of behavior stops when people reach the age of 18? If so, you have a lot to learn.

I have known bullies who DID use their real names set about gathering a mob to drive someone clean off the Internet. I have seen others fall victim to such tactics, and worse.

It is a matter of personal safety to use a nym and I'm not about to change that for the benefit of ANY multinational multibillion corporation!