It’s officially winter. All across the grid, people frolick through snow, snuggle around fires and prepare for this most wonderful time of year. We at the Destination Guide would be remiss if we didn’t share a few of the awesome places we enjoy wandering through. It’s a tradition, really.
Just like the song, few things are as joyous as dashing through snowy landscapes in a one-horse open sleigh. Speaking of classics, it just wouldn’t be the same without a loving recreation of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, or last-minute shopping on a snowy boulevard. We also have a magically enchanting forest and a floating realm molded from crisp winter light. And for those of you who like a little excitement with your holidays, ever wonder what a battle between Halloween and Christmas would look like? Of course you do.
As magical as this time of year is, none of it would be possible without you. So join us and create something magical. Most of all, happy holidays!
In the newest installment of The Drax Files: World Makers, Draxtor Despres interviews Rose Borchovski, known throughout Second Life for her amazing and immersive art installations. Listen in as Drax and Rose discuss inspiration, the creation of Susa Bubble, current projects and more. Be sure to watch this thought-provoking episode of The Drax Files: World Makers.
Interested in more Drax Files? Watch all the previous episodes at the links below!
A recent security breach at Adobe gave hackers access to private information for users of Adobe sites and services. This included Adobe passwords, email addresses, and password hints. Second Life has not been compromised, but, this is a good reminder that it’s important to never use the same password for Second Life that you use elsewhere.
If you have reused your Second Life password on other services, particularly if you used it for an Adobe service, you should change it immediately.
After every large breach, fraudsters search for users who reuse their passwords on other sites, so if you use the same password for Second Life and other services, your Second Life account could be at risk if one of those other services suffers a security breach.
For a limited time, you can get a 50% discount* on a new Premium Membership!
Premium Members enjoy a private home, weekly virtual currency payouts, special building rights, access to exclusive inworld experiences, expanded support, and more.
Upgrade today to take advantage of this great discount and get the latest free Premium gifts - some holiday-themed decor to help you celebrate the season in Second Life!
Current Premium subscribers can collect their free gifts here.
*This limited-time discount offer is available only for memberships on the Quarterly billing plan. Discount will be applied to the first quarterly billing cycle only, and all future charges will be at the regular Premium price. To qualify, Second Life members must have an active Basic account or create a new Second Life account. Discount offer begins on Thursday the 21st of November 2013 at 12:01 am Pacific Standard Time (PST) and expires on Wednesday the 1st of January 2014 at 12:01 am Pacific Standard Time (PST).
Today, we are launching an experimental Project Fitted Mesh Viewer with additional collision bones needed to support dynamically fitted mesh garments on all of the avatars. When these changes have been finalized, they will enable garment designers to use the superior capabilities of mesh content creation tools to make garments that adapt to a wide range of Second Life avatars.
Since the introduction of Mesh to Second Life, creators have faced challenges fitting Mesh garments to the Second Life avatar. Because mesh objects are not resizable in as many ways as the avatar itself is, it has been difficult for mesh garment creators to provide garments that adapt to the shape of the avatar in the way that the image-based clothing layers do. While many creators have made heroic efforts to provide products in a range of sizes, and some have collaborated to define a set of standard sizes that work reasonably well for much of the user population, many have found that mesh garments just don't work well enough for their avatars. Mesh garments also don't move with the body parts affected by avatar physics.
Users have developed two approaches to address these problems:
Rigging garments to the "collision bones" of the avatar skeleton (often marketed as "Liquid Mesh"). This works in current Viewers for some body parts, but there are some avatar shape parameters that do not have corresponding collision bones, so garments do not adapt to fit everywhere on the body.
The "Mesh Deformer" project added code to the Viewer to dynamically compute how to modify each garment shape by looking at how the vertices of the avatar were changed from that of the female and male base shapes.
The Linden Lab development team has studied both approaches, and compared their effectiveness, maintainability, and performance. Neither approach completely eliminates the occasional need for an alpha clothing layer to prevent small parts of the avatar skin from appearing through garments, but both work quite well at resizing garments so that they fit the avatar and move naturally with it. While the collision bones method requires the creator to do some additional rigging, we have decided that because it leverages more of the existing avatar shape system it is likely to be the more maintainable solution and to perform better for a wider range of users.
We have posted documentation on the wiki describing the full set of collision bones, including the newly added ones. We invite creators to begin experimenting with creating garments rigged to this new skeleton.
At this time, the new skeleton should be considered provisional and subject to change; we do not yet recommend selling or buying garments rigged to it. Since we may find reasons to improve it during this testing process, and any change to the collision bones will likely break garments rigged before the change, we want to make sure that we have a set of bones that we can all live with into the indefinite future before it is widely used.
Creators and other users who participate in testing can provide feedback by filing Jira issues in the Fitted Mesh project.
As with any online service, Second Life users are targeted by scammers from time to time. One type of scam we’ve seen recently are websites that promise huge discounts on L$ sales and even offer to buy L$.
Often, these sites use these “too good to be true” discounts to lure you into entering your credit card information, which they then steal. Sometimes, they will use trusted payment systems, but sell you fraudulently obtained L$. When these fraudulent L$ are recovered by Linden Lab, you may then struggle to recover your payment from the anonymous strangers that sold them to you.
Not only does using these sites put your credit card information at risk, but it also constitutes a violation of the Terms of Service. Remember, you can buy L$ only on the LindeX or from an authorized L$ reseller; you can sell L$ only on the LindeX.
The good news is, keeping your credit card and your Second Life account safe is easy:
Only purchase L$ on the LindeX or from an authorized L$ reseller
Remember that the only place to sell your L$ is the LindeX, the official exchange operated by Linden Lab
Be wary of any offer (which may be made via IM or direct message) that sounds too good to be true. If the site isn’t an authorized L$ reseller, ignore it.
We’ve been working for some time on a set of improvements – code-named Project Shining - to give Second Life users a better inworld experience. The latest improvements from this work include an improved object-caching and streaming system called Project Interesting.
As we’ve previously blogged, this project will greatly reduce the load and time it takes to draw objects in regions. Put simply, this means scenes will appear more quickly and smoothly as you move throughout Second Life.
Project Interesting is a set of improvements to how the Viewer and server work together to know what scene objects to draw. We’ve already made the server smarter about sending the important, "interesting" stuff first, and today we’re launching a release candidate for a new Viewer that does a much better job of storing and managing the scene data on your computer. This will not only improve the speed at which a location loads, it will also help with overall Viewer performance.
This all translates to a smoother, faster Second Life experience that gets you to the Interesting stuff that much faster. So check out the video below, then go try out the new viewer Second Life Interesting Viewer version 184.108.40.2063895.
We’ve seen many great machinima films created in Second Life over the years and are happy to see events like the Machinima Expo recognizing the talent and amazing work that goes into creating machinima.
The Machinima Expo celebrates its sixth year with screenings and panel discussions about the art of Machinima on November 17th, 2013.
Now that October has come and gone, why not take a moment to see what’s new with the Destination Guide? We always have interesting destinations showing up and we love sharing them. So get some relaxation in before that winter rush, huh?
To help get over all that October excitement, we’ve got some soothing islands perfect for taking a break, a fashion fair for a little remedial shopping, and a lovingly rainy gallery in a brand new location. But if quiet contemplation isn’t your cup of tea, why not lose yourself in the mysteries of a forgotten well, take in a few live shows or get ready for an ever-popular November hunt? If all else fails, you can always purge horror with creativity and create something awesome. See you inworld!
UPDATE: the maintenance has been completed and all should be back to normal. Thank you again for your patience!
Tomorrow morning (Thursday, November 7), we’ll be performing some important database maintenance for about an hour, beginning at 7am PT.
During this period, a number of Second Life services will be impacted. Some users may be logged off and may be temporarily unable to log in for a brief period. The maintenance may also disrupt transactions, logins, and account registration. The land store and land auctions may also become unavailable during this time.
We recommend that users refrain from rezzing or transferring valuable (no-copy) objects or making any L$ or Marketplace transactions during this maintenance window.
We will update this post when the maintenance has been completed, and you can follow along at Grid Status for more detailed updates as well.
We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you all for your patience as we work to improve Second Life for everyone.
Highlights from the Second Life Destinatio
n Guide ...
- The Drax Files Episode 14: Rose Borchovski
- Keep Your Account Secure - Never Reuse Passwords
- Limited Time Offer: Save 50% on Premium Membership
- Making Mesh Garments Fit Better
- An Important Reminder About Buying and Selling L$
Speedy Delivery: Introducin
g the Project Interesti. ..
- Machinima Expo 6 is Coming
Highlights from the Second Life Destinatio
n Guide ...
- Expected Downtime Thursday, November 7