SL9B: Virtual Learning Spaces @ TXSTATE Booth

Tuesday, June 19, 2012
I am proud to announce that my team at Texas State University - San Marcos has been once again invited to join the Second Life birthday celebrations in 2012! This year it is SL9B -- 9th birthday of Second Life. And what a great time it is to celebrate!

Second Life never looked better, performed better. Lindens chose not to host the event this year. This move sent a mixed message at first but it gave us, the community in SL, a chance to organize our own event and show the world that the residents of SL have a socially sound and strong community -- one robust enough to organize an event of this magnitude.

I must say the organization committee (Doctor Gascoigne. KT Syakumi. Diana Renoir. Honour Macmillan. Marianne McCann. Rails Bailey. Crap Mariner.) and Saffia Widdershins from the Prim Perfect magazine rallied the troops and pulled it all together in perfect timing and harmony. The celebrations exceed 20 sims and the entertainment schedule is jampacked!

The resident exhibits are a beautiful quilt of various backgrounds, artistic points of view and all walks of life that march on in Second Life. The exhibits show us the variety of ways SL can serve its users and how ultimately it is all about connecting and building community.

Here's a clip of the opening ceremony featuring Saffia's address to the SL9B community:

Below are some of the exhibits I have photographed during my explorations.(I am not done yet taking pictures, I will be adding to this set during this week)

Our exhibit features a 3D chart of sorts documenting how our team at Texas State University - San Marcos developed a simulation of a historically significant yet geographically remote village in New Mexico in Google Earth, Second Life, OpenSim and Unity Engine over the course of last few years.
The simulations created were used as a part of a hybrid online course taught at our university and the Second Life sim (txstate ii) was used as the main classroom where students and instructor met for lectures and class activities asynchronously and synchronously.

Below are some screen shots from our exhibit at the SL9B.

To teleport to our display please use the following slurl:

Presented at TXDLA and USLA Conference in April 2012

It's been a long time since my last post I apologize. I have been very busy in real life as well second life.

First off I got to present at two conferences in April in TXDLA and USDLA about our virtual learning spaces initiative. It was very exciting and stimulating and we received pretty good feedback on our presentation. Below is a copy of our presentation.

After that storm blew over, I had to work on getting ready for the Home & Garden Expo benefiting Relay for Life 2012.  Most of the work I did involved taking old designs and re-implementing them so they were less resource intensive. The effort paid off, most of my chairs went from 26 land impact to 7 or sometimes even less. Most light fixtures of mine are now 2-3 land impact max and they still look as good as ever.

I sculpted to the degree I considered to be still faithful to the original. I refuse to bend my creations beyond recognition just so that people can cram too many of them on their land. It is good to have houses with few furnishings, I do not want to see over-crowded mission homes.

The Home Expo gave me a chance to have a real deadline to get this work done by and also I was very lucky to get invited to the Prim Perfect Sim at the Expo. Prim Perfect crew were the perfect host and I felt very welcomed and walked away very happy.

This year the Home Expo had an insane number of sims and creators. The amount of content available was astounding and I must admit I did not get to see all of it due to my SL client crashing every 5 minutes ever since mesh was deployed and the last two updates to the Release Client seem to have introduced an infinite loop that maxes out the CPU on Macs and causes a crash. I guess I am going back to Imprudence Client.

Well that's not all. There's more, I will post about it in the next post.