Monday, January 25, 2016
I'm a club manager of a venue that serves both the community it's in, and has also attracted
a small following of those from outside. One way I publicize it is through my Facebook feed.
Well, one evening someone plasters an image of a woman doing unspeakable acts with animals,
followed by an angry rant spewing hatred of Second Life. He claimed to be the owner of a
couple sims whom had people doing the most vile things from child rape to bestiality on his
land, saying the Lab closed his sims and threw him out of the Grid. He denounced our virtual
world as a land of the most sickening perversions, and demanded if I had any decency at all,
I would leave and help spread word of "the truth" about Second Life.
My response was to delete the his comment. While I can take an insult, I couldn't have that
image he posted due to it's graphic nature and it being against Facebook Terms of Service.
Well, his response was fury. Accusing me of covering up "the truth," and defending
perversion, rape, child abuse, and all sorts of other crimes. Finally, he told me he'd be
reporting me to Facebook to get me banned.
Dr. Phily, if what this guy says happened to him is true, it was wrong. But I can't accept
his hate either. While I don't know exact numbers of these sorts of sims, it was months
before I came across so much as a girly bar here in Second Life. Let alone a "kink club" of
which I've heard tales about, but only saw for myself when a friend TPed me in one one as a
joke, well over a few years after I came here. To paraphrase a Dutch friend, Holland is not
just a few "red light" city blocks in Amsterdamn, and Second Life is not a handful of
hardcore RP sims that very few of it's residents ever set foot in.
I still feel mad about what he did, and he's been posting his hate on his own Facebook page.
Shall I counteract them in his own comments? And do I have anything to worry about by his
To the Point,
These kinds of civil desputes can be very tangled affairs and in many cases neither party is 100% right. In an arbitration, we would first get a detailed description, from each, describing the problem from their own perspective. Step two, make each read the other's description. That done, we can now ask meaningful questions. If the man owned the sims and things were being done that he does not allow, why was he letting them stay? Why does he target your club, instead of the ones on his sims? If he is so against "porn", why is he spreading it in a public setting?
The fact is, one,there are many such adult clubs in SL, which work within the rules and two, if an individual has a bad opinion of a person or place, it's just that, an opinion. Opinions aren't rules, until you get a majority to vote on them. Another thing to remember is, Second life is the product of over 44 million imaginations. The tricky thing about the imagination is, it has no picture for the word "NOT". If you put a "Thou shall not..." in your mind, it immediately goes about drawing it to you.
Far more powerful than a mere physical brain, our minds can magically create anything it pictures. There is no Top Secret plan to keep you from gaining super mind powers. You just haven't asked the right question yet. Conflicts end as soon as both parties imagine a solution, as a picture where everybody has a happy ending and maybe even a new friend.
This has proven true through out my life, but I don't ask anybody to just take my word for it. I can only hope that I have Stirred your curiousity enough to test it for yourself.
Still waiting for the fat lady to sing,
I can't help but notice that you and your little bunny friend, Sha, are somewhat better known and more influencial in your community than I am in mine, despite your having been in SL for fewer years than I have. If we all start out second life with the same abilities and bank account, how is it that some seem to be born with a silver spoon in their mouth? If, on the other hand, we all have the same potential to become noteworthy, influencial members of the community, there must be some skill involved, that I, one of tens of millions in SL, could learn and develop and thereby get my own silver spoon. As a "Pro", are there any "tricks of the trade" that you could pass on to us little guys, to help elevate our position in the community?
That Guy in episode 81 of Galaxy Quest
Hey you Guys,
No doubt, we have all heard, when it comes to turning ideas into forms of reality, expressions like "Money talks" and "Follow the money". The same principles are at work, whether we are in a real or virtual world, so it is important to understand what money is and how it works. In and of itself, a dollar is no more valuable than a piece of paper or any rock on the ground. Money gets it value because it is a good conduit for turning ideas into form. Keep in mind, money is not the only path that ideas can take. It is not even the best way of connecting ideas and forms. Like computers, our mind energy can have a wired or wireless connection to the "get'er done" network. By learning to mix the mental energy (an ideal) with some emotional energy (enthusiasm) and a little physical energy (rolling up your sleeves and getting a little dirt on your hands), you can convert any molehill into a mountain, without spending a single L$. How, you ask? John Lennon said it best, in his song, "Imagine".
In "real life", we have money for the necessities, like food, clothing and shelter. In Secondlife, we don't ever require food or even air. You can spend all day walking on the bottom of the sea or the moon and never take a breath. On the Marketplace, there are enough free items to fill any needs. Shelter is totally unneeded, because there are no elements that can harm us. Home is a handy place to open your new items, but there are lots of other places to do that, without the need of paying rent. What about money for things that aren't free? How do I get L$s to buy cool stuff? You mentioned my "little bunny friend". With her hundreds of avatars, each with the latest selection of mods and clothing, the castles, vehicles and other rich girl toys, it might surprise you to learn that, until recently, she never bought any Linden dollars. If there seems to be a silver spoon in her mouth, it is because she imagined one there, from day one. Imagination is the principle currency in Secondlife. When we log into the grid, we have a picture in our mind of who our avatar is and what it's position is in the community. When you are in world, there is an entire network of computers dedicated to turning the pictures in your mind into a virtual world around you. If you want a better world, begin with putting better pictures in your mind. Does something this simple really work? Yes, 100%, so give it a try. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
Sunday, January 24, 2016
Long before becoming a reporter for the SL Newser, this bunny was hopping to the four corners of the grid, in search of the next been there done that. A friend and I would take turns introducing the other to a new place and activity. One of these adventures took place at a golf course. I had never tried real life golf, other than on a computer simulation, so was game to try it in SL. Turned out, I really liked it, although I couldn't explain why. Hoping to introduce our readers to this fun adventure, we searched for a golf sim, to re-learn the game and take notes on the back of the score card of the things we liked.
Our first pick was a place called Aero Pines Golf Course, but we soon learned of several other great clubs. From the landing, we pass through the clubhouse, noting large meeting rooms on either side. They must have some big events and tournaments here. Out on the back patio, you'll see a large pool on your right and to the left there is a kiosk, where you join the club, to be allowed to play there (free) and get a HUD and golf club.
The golf club is what they call a loner and is good for 24 hours and only at Aero. You can always get a new loner club for each time you come, or click the [?] on the HUD to learn where to buy your own, use anywhere kit, which even comes with it's own holes.
Next, we find the first tee, just a few steps from the kiosk. A large marker gives the tee number and it's par and has an arrow on top, pointed to the hole. Two small blocks mark the starting line Aim your body in the direction of the hole, then select the Driver from theHUD. This does several things to set you up to shoot. The head of the club adjusts shape, you are posed to hit the ball, a small cloud emits a tail to show direction and strength of wind and a pointer on the ground allows you to aim, using left and right arrow keys. Having aimed in the right direction, you must now decide how hard to hit the ball. Click and hold down the left mouse button, in a clear area like the sky. As you keep it held down, a bars meter adds bars and changes color, as it reaches the maximum power level. Letting the button up allows the swing to begin and hit the ball. As the ball travels, it leaves a cool strobe light trail, which remains as you approach it. To get you to the ball's exact location, a large ball marker hovers above it. When you are close enough to click the marker, it will TP you to the ball. From this position, we follow the same steps as before, facing the direction of the hole, picking a club from the HUD, aiming and hitting. After you sink your putt in the hole, a look around the perimeter of the green will find the arrow that points to the next tee.
The HUD and club are simple to use and, after only a few holes, you begin to get pretty good at using them. Playing golf at Aero is way better than a mere golf simulator, for several reasons. The sim is a beautiful park-like setting, with a very enjoyable music stream. You can't help but find yourself thinking that this would be a great place to bring a friend or date. There are several places for small gatherings, like a gazebo and the beach.
On my last visit to gather a few last details and pics, my radar picked up an avatar moving about the sim. Moving to their location, there was nobody to see. Then she welcomed me to which the reply was "Hi invisible lady". We worked out that a glitch in my viewer was keeping her from rezzing, while she could see me and my Newser Reporter tag. She told me about the golf world, in SL. I followed her as she finished her last few holes, although she was invisible, by following the bouncing ball. When her round was finished, she took me to two more golf sims and I could see her in those. We quickly looked around Hazeltine Golf course, then went to Claremont Pines to meet Ben Sauber, a top competitor on the circuit. My hostess qlued me that they use voice, when playing, so I turned it on. Having only recently upgraded to voice, I was amazed at how much the added dimension increased the fun.
We highly recommend golf, in SL. My good friend, Doc Philly, liked it so much, he went out and bought his own set of clubs. Perhaps you'll catch him there, shooting some rounds.
Tuesday, January 12, 2016
To Doctor Philly,
I have some friends, on the sim I live on, that I would love to be closer with. The problem is, they seem to be unresponsive, in conversations, most of the time. Sometimes it's like they are on another planet and radio communication takes a half hour to get there and back. I try to be patient, but there are times when I feel tempted to push them out a hole in my skybox floor. I've even seen one of them A.F.K., several times, when she was dancing on a pole for tips. What's wrong with these people and what can be done to make them fit in better?
Talks to walls
Communication breakdowns are always irritating. Fortunately, science can lead us to finding ways to improve the art of communicating. At every scale, from individual sub-atomic quarks to the entire universe itself, we observe life forms. These countless life forms all share two desires; to be individuals, making their own choices and to gather with others of their kind, to form a synthetic greater life form. Quarks join to make sub-atomic particles, which join to make atoms, which form molecules, cells, plant and animal bodies, etc. The incentive for forming greater life forms is the synergistic increase of powers and abilities. The greater life is much greater than the sum of it's little life parts. In order for little lives to gather into greater ones, they must surrender part of their own self- determination, for the good of the group. Each modifies it's behavior/mannerisms, depending on position within the greater body and how it may be most useful there. A cell that is acting in the right manner could be said to have "good manners". A cell with bad manners will be an irritant to the rest of the body and will be eliminated, out the back door.
When somebody in the room is asleep at the wheel (AFK), they are, temporarily not one with the group. Commune means "with one". We all have to get up from the keyboard, now and then. The best way to avoid any disturbance to the rest of the group is to excercise good manners. If you need to step away from the group and not be cut out, give them a BRB (be right back) followed by a BACK, on your return.
We can't force others to have good manners, but we can set good examples and let others know that manners are appreciated. In the meanwhile, at least you know, when you talk to your walls, they aren't going to just walk off from you.
At your service,
I love that in SL I can be anything and do anything I want. Lately, one of my friends has been saying that I should pick the best avatar, species and gender and stay that way all the time. That doesn't sound like fun, to me. Is there some kind of rule that I don't know about? Am I allowed to have fun or not?
Stuck inside of foxes with the bunny blues again
The main purpose of any universe, real or virtual, is to answer every single "What If" question that can be asked. The quest for answers brings a never ending stream of new experiences. With each question that's answered, we "Become" something that's New and Improved. I'm fond of telling folks that "Even an old god can learn new tricks". In some old, mistranslated writings, a prophet asks god his name, to which the reply was, "I am that I am". We have confirmed that the correct translation should be "I am BECOMING that which I will become".
I don't know all the official rules in SL, but the top of any list should say, "Thou shall have great fun, gaining new experiences and becoming all you can become.
From the horse's mouth,
Friday, January 8, 2016
Dear Dr. Philly,
Through some misunderstandings, I feel that the administrators of the sim and some of the residents are angry at me and want to do me harm. I have taken this up, with those in charge and been told I can stay, but still feel unsafe in my home. I am just a little guy. What can I do to get out of this mess?
A.F.K. under my rock
To Mr. K.,
Can I call you A? I'm going to let you in on a very little known important secret on how things get done, anywhere in the universe, RL and SL included. Everything in the universe that we call "matter" has it's roots in an idea that mattered. That idea inspires minds to create images of it. We call that "Imagination". Our feelings enthusiastically take up these images and create electro-magnetic meshes which draw pre-existing matters to give the original idea a solid form. Long story short, everything that's happening around us is being cooked up in our imaginations, like it or not. Don't just take my word for it. You have to prove it for yourself. I know you have an imagination, or you wouldn't be in SL. Put and develop in your mind the image that you are "That Guy". That guy, who everybody likes and respects and says hi to, when he walks in a room. That guy, that everybody is friends with and smiles every time they think of him. Keep your image free of any negative qualities. Have good, happy feelings about your image. When the image and feelings are complete, drop it, forget about it. Right on time, you will become "That Guy"
I have an anoying new neighbor, that's driving me and my friends nuts. Whenever he's around, it's always talk about doom and gloom, we're all gonna die. Dude, it's a GAME, get over it! If I ban him from my home, that would only add more stress. Can you give me a more civilized way to handle this guy?
I think you will like my "High Tech" methods of handling group conflicts. In the process, we'll also share some ideas about how time works. We'll check the weather forcast, before we proceed. When it comes to predicting the path of dangerous storms, Meteorologists use "computer models", which can be run using a different set of "what ifs", hundreds of times per minute, ending in the most probable path. The actual storm path takes days to finish. The computer model path takes a nano second. Same paths, different time scale.
If we step back and take a look at Second Life as a method of running computer models of interpersonal relationships, we can find the shortest behavioral path to a "happily ever after" civilization. In a one hour movie or TV show, all the events shown cover more than one hour's time. For the person at the keyboard, the soul of the avatar, an hour of movie or an hour of SL both offer the same amount of new experience. The added advantage in SL is that we each write our own lines, in each new daily episode of a sitcom and the length of time you spend in world is equal to one day's experience to both the avatar and it's soul. This accounts for why we have all felt that time is faster in SL. We are all variables in a computer model society. We can write our own scripts, but not those of others. Over time, we can influence what others write. The important trick is, don't keep playing the same re-runs each day. With each new episode, make your av say and do things that might help steer the show to a happy ending. With a little practice, you WILL get good results. Open your shades, your front door, hit [Ctrl]+[Shift]+[Y] and let that SLun shine in.
Thursday, January 7, 2016
Sometimes, we just put all the possible destinations on the wall and put on a blindfold, spin around three times and shoot a dart. This time, I hit on one called, "Roots", by Cica Ghost. It was described as a sim art project. The illustration showed some odd looking buildings that beckoned exploration. An Artist and Architect in our own right, we decided to go see if there was anything cool to report on.
Arriving at the landing tower, as things rezzed, the music is first to make a good impression. Words like Majestic and Peacefull come to mind. We begin our tour with a spring in our step. From the tower, there are two ways to explore the sim. A balloon ride comes by and give a ride around, with a birds eye view, or you can just walk down the path and tour on foot. Flying is also allowed. Viewing the neighborhood gives us a split impression. On the one hand, the scenery looks like a child's urban creation, made in the sand lot behind his house, but long forgoten and left to nature and her seasons to take back. On the other hand, this place is anything but dead. One senses that the sim is one large, living compost pile, preparing the ground for a lush new life. This sim has an air about it....one that should be kept away from open flames and sparks.
Adding to the "look", the sim's largest resident, a giant snail, with a mud hut for a shell, slimes his way past us, probably on his way to the races. We tried thumbing a ride, but the house was small and he smelled like something that shouldn't be stepped on. We move on to higher ground, where the homes aren't mobile.
Several of the structures had animations, allowing one to gaze out an upper window, while contemplating images, stirred up by the beautiful music. We were somewhat shocked to find one house that was occupied by a little girl and a black cat. Fortunately, they were only statues, so no need to make the sign of the cross or throw salt over the shoulder. Moving on, we spot a large tower, that looks like it would give a great view of the sim, if we could get to the top. A long ladder was shy by 6 meters of the top, but a large flat rock travelled up and down, like an elevator. At the top, naturally a little contemplation came into play, imagining ourselves as a tiny mouse that made it's home here.
Before ending the tour, it was imperative that we take the balloon tour of the sim. Returning to the landing tower, we grab the next available flight and keep our seat for several go arounds. On the second pass, a young lady popped into the adjacent seat. Always pleased to share our adventures with others, we smile and say, "This is a fun place, isn't it?". She agrees, then, red-faced, jumps out and waits for the next flight.
Overall impressions of the sim? My hat's off to Cica Ghost, for taking objects and textures of child-like simplicity and crudeness and melding them into a grand and masterful artwork, the size of a sim. It's like walking around inside a painting and you can almost smell the rich humus, ready to sprout any seed that finds it. Maybe it's just the viewer I'm using. Perhaps our readers should visit and see if their latest, greatest viewer comes with [SMELL] parameters.
I give "Roots", by Cica Ghost, a big thumbs up. I recomend you go see it and if you agree, leave a little tip in her balloon tip jar, by the landing.
Monday, January 4, 2016
Just as in the real world, Second Life has it's share of faux pas and social blunders, which take away from a community's maximun enjoyment via social interactions. In the real world, through print and broadcast media, we have a host of behavioral gurus, helping us improve our manners. Perhaps it is time for Second Life to have a hero of it's own. As they say in the East, when the patient is ready, the doctor will come. Learning of the arrival of a new sage, in the neighborhood, we sent out an invitation to an interview at Sha's place.
Join us now and meet the new, been there, done that, go-to guy and find out how things work and how to make your world a little better, ......
Sha: Welcome to my home, Dr. Philly.
Dr: Thank you, Miss Shamen,...or should I call you "Sha"
Sha: Most just call me Sha. What should we call you?
Dr: Young lady, you can call me anything, as long as it's not late to dinner.
Sha: I understand, Doc, that you will be offering your services to the SL community, free of charge.
Dr: Yes, indeed. In fact, I've already spoken to your Editor, Bixyl, about a regular column, called "Ask Dr. Philly", or something along those lines. Readers are being asked to submit their questions, regarding social behaviors to the Newser and it's staff. When we get enough questions, we'll produce the column.
Sha: We'll look forward to reading it. Dealing with social behaviors sounds pretty complex. What kind of skill can one horse introduce at the trough, to make this a better zoo?
Dr: I am, what some would call, a Scientist/Philosopher and the whole universe is my laboratory, filled with endless experiments. Over half a century of carefull observations has taken my perceptions into the 4th dimension, that of Scale. Regardless of whether we zoom down to the smallest sub-atomic particle or out to the edge of the universe itself, we note that the difference between chaos and order follows the same plan, at every zoom level. The whole universe is made and controlled by a simple set of rules or principles. As above, so below. Any one or thing, that does not play by the rules, is out of the universe game. Some make errors, because they don't know the rules of the game. The rules are very simple, but how they apply to every situation would fill many volumes. We often get compliments to our explainations like, "Why didn't they just say it that way in the first place". If you write in to "ask Dr. Philly", the replies will offer readers a whole new dimension of answers and different ways of seeing things.
[Sha leads Dr. Philly to her slide show of community affairs]
Sha: That sounds like a very usefull service, Dr. Philly. I'll assist you in any way I can. Doing service to one's community is always a joy.
Dr: That it is, Sha, and from your past articles, I'm sure we're on the same horse path.
Sha: It's been a pleasure, introducing you Doctor. I'm sure we will all be hearing more from you.