Here I am taking a break in the concert village that 3rd Rock Grid has set up for this year’s 8th annual Robstock Festival!! While this poseball by the Starfleet booth is supposed to make you look suave and nonchalant; personally, I think it makes you look like you’ve spent the last 45 minutes desperately locked in an ever disintegrating search pattern to locate the festival powder room, or even a freaking bush , and are finally forced to lean against something large enough to offer some paltry visual blockage should things go farther south, shift into clench mode and visualize something dry and calming. Or perhaps the pose it is some sort of Vulcan yoga technique, completely unrelated to a churro induced gastric crisis- who the hell knows. BUT having found out 24 hours ago that the concert I had promised to promote was THIS month, not the next, whilst recovering from a nasty ass month long illness AND getting the family ready for an overseas trip in three freaking days, the Vulcan butt clenching photo was the best opening I ‘ve managed to come up with. Now punch it Mr.Sulu, we’ve got a post to write!!
Hello my dearest dears! How marvelous, here we all are ready for another whirlwind adventure on OpenSim, the software platform that hosts hundreds of independent worlds, many of which choose to be connected by an amped up teleportation system called the hypergrid, allowing you to endlessly explore these brave new worlds, experiencing all sorts of exciting events, sightseeing, making friends from all over the world, and amassing so much free content that you will eventually run out of pretentious cultural metaphors, literary references, and douchy obscure vocabulary alluding to some emotional and/or spiritual aspect of a crassly unbridled obsession with your Brobdingnagian hoard. Well, you might slip one or two in, but other than that, you’ll just blunder onward.
Anyway, if you are not sure how to get on OpenSim,( and you are not alone believe me) please see my “How to get on OpenSim in Six Ridiculously Easy Steps”page at the top of this blog. And don’t forget my “Newbie Glossary”, also at the top. Come on, it’s easy! Come spread your wings in the free metaverse!
For today’s adventure we will begin with the Robstock Festival.Yes, THIS weekend (sigh) , March 27, 28 and 29 2015, is once again, the three days of solid live music fundraiser for that most excellent of causes, Doctors Without Borders.
See what I mean -no damned bushes!!! In previous years, when 3rd Rock was not on the hypergrid, the events had been live streamed between 3rd Rock and Second Life. Last year, in preparation for their joining the hypergrid, it had taken place on Metroplis Grid, 3rd Rock and Second Life. This year, for the fist time, it is taking place 100% on the hypergrid, and the scale of this concert venue is unprecedented! This event is a perfect introduction to the hypergrid for Newbie friends!Admission is free, and donations to Doctors Without Borders are gratefully accepted! Last year Robstock raised 800 US dollars, and this year the goal is 1000!!
There is this fantastic amphitheater with a dance floor and …
… masses of comfy seating! Outside…
grid.3rdrockgrid.org:8002:Robstock1 (there are 4 regions)
The concert village already offers a good overview of life on 3rd Rock. The Grid’s continual non Robstock event schedule aside, this group of Rockers has probably impacted the hypergrid the most. The UF Starfleet Astraios community has taken science fiction roleplay in the free metaverse and raised it to a whole new level. As an affiliate of the much larger United Federation Starfleet, an international Trekkie organization that combines 3D roleplay with other aspects of Trek lifestyle such as writing fiction and attending conventions, the Astraios colony is able to run an impressive Starfleet Academy, with a wide variety of courses. They also have an active social venue with regular dances and events, and as I understand it, are boldly going where no Rocker has gone before, by branching onto other grids:) Professional author, and hypergrid roleplay mavin The Indie Author Extraordinaire, Crystal Brewton, of Metropolis Grid, is cooking up first rate storylines and building and whipping up costumes, so I can really see Starfleet boldly going a long way on the hypergrid!
I find 3rd Rock has been a wonderful addition to the hypergrid, albeit the two are still a bit of a mystery to each other. I had the pleasure of leading a Metaverse Tour group to one of 3rd Rocks lovely , primmy showcase regions , Mimas.
Built by a geologist, this massive reproduction of a Northwest American mountain range,
beautifully strewn with waterfalls and wooden walkways got oohs and ahs not just from the newbies, but also from the more experienced people. Metaverse Tour founder Serene Jewel was positively gobsmacked ” I didn’t know this was here!! How did you find this?” Big chuckles, because the Tree has been EVERYWHERE!!!
One of the better ambassadors for 3rd Rock Grid is Sunbeam Magic , a smart, cheerful lady fee, who has returned to 3rd Rock with her partner Aacme Fall to rebuild their masterpiece, Aacme City.
This is Sunny. I met her a couple of years ago when my dear friend, metaverse renaissance woman Minethere Always introduced us. These two accomplished bloggers are going to publish an inworld Magazine called Visionz about the hypergrid- available in Aacme City, of course!!They have so many great ideas! Miney is very involved in the City, who’s sheer scale it is difficult to capture in photos. This build is incredibly detailed with a cinema, dance hall,real estate office, central park, freebie shops(did you notice the shop of renowned creator Avia Bonne?) a working roller rink on the utterly charming beach front, tunnels, alleys, sidestreets, doors that open onto little furnished rooms, layer upon layer of surprises for you to explore. Have a good look around, as ALL the shops and apartments, the warehouses, the neat little trailers and bungalow on the beach are RENT FREE!!! Just contact Sunny and she will give you permission to rezz, move around walls if you like, help you throw a party on the boardwalk,whatever it takes to make you feel at home! This is the perfect place to settle in a Newbie friend! Aacme City’s hypergrid address is:
If this address just doesn’t want to work, you can always use the Aacme City gate, in the Sanctuary Gate hub. Grid Owner Shaun Emerald usually only has one gate per grid, but sometimes makes an exception for certain regions. So although the 3rd Rock main gate is located at the bottom of the hill, the Aacme City gate is up top with the main body.
Which looks like this; Shaun now has ONE HUNDRED AND TWENTY gates in total, officially making Sanctuary the single most useful resource for hypergrid travellers in the history of the universe. Really. 120 grids at your fingertips. These are called blam gates. See the red gates? They are completely down. Perhaps the grid is down, perhaps the coordinates have changed and the owners haven’t told Shaun. See the blue gates? Those are unable to connect for some reason. They need Shaun to take a look and see what the problem is; most of them will probably go back online. Isn’t it great to be able to SEE what is working and what isn’t? To know it’s the gate and not YOU?! This is the most massively useful hypergrid address you can give to a newbie:
This will take you to the Sanctuary Welcome Center, and this blam gate will take you down to the main gate hub ! Make sure your Newbie landmarks up HERE, not the gate hub below!! The main gate hub, named Eld2, is a varregion, an extra large kind of region that is new on OpenSim. You cannot teleport to a varregion from a region that does not have the latest OpenSim software-and a great many on the hypergrid do NOT!!! But you can teleport from anywhere to the Welcome Center! Take your time up here, there are signs on the wall with really useful information on how to use the gates, from how not to lose attachments, to how to travel in groups!”
I am talking a lot about Newbies aren’t I? Well, there is a reason for that.
Here I am at a meeting in the Sanctuary Arcadia Asylum Museum with grid owner Shaun Emerald, and my fellow curators Briony Juran, and Brian Landers. We needed to get together and have a talk because they are now BOTH hard at work on at the museum. Shaun Emerald, who deserves some kind of damned hypergrid award, donated FOUR more regions to the museum for workshops. Of course Brian and Briony were straight out of Second Life . Now, I had always assumed my challenges with learning the ropes in OpenSim, stemmed from the fact that I never really did much when I was in SL, beyond rezzing, and unlinking stuff. I had never owned a region or a parcel, hell I had never even completely worked out the controls on my skybox! Brian and Briony were my exact opposites, super competent, lots of computer smarts, and what they didn’t know STUNNED me. So I have been thinking a lot about Newbie issues. And between that, and Shaun’s guidance and generosity, and Brian and Briony’s tenacity and dedication…
…all freaking hell is breaking loose in the Sanctuary Museum. This looks like a Second Life Museum, doesn’t it?
Brian and Briony have also got vendors up and running. Brian, who has taken to OpenSim like a duck to water, is loading up vendors faster than you can say wowza!!
This is Brian’s workshop. The Distribution Center is the building in the back, and as you can see Brian is ripping apart boats and subs, as well as sorting out the messes in MY boxes and putting them in vendors. He is also taking apart larger builds, and packaging every piece individually.I mean everything-ferns, cutlery, tikki gods, mushrooms,eensy tensy lambs, you name it. So if you ever looked at the kooky bamboo huts on Aley’s Volcano Island and thought ” I wish I could have just that one hut” now you CAN. Next door…
…is becoming an OpenSim version of Briony’s lovely steampunk emporium, the Cog and Grog! The lights on these machines are flashing and twinkling, as step by step, this resourceful lady brings these wonderful pieces to life on the hypergrid!!
And as to these other buildings in her workshop? Yes they ARE from Flotsam Pirate town, but NOT the ones you normally find on the hypergrid. These things WORK- doors sounds, explosions-yes you heard that right THEY BLOW UP just like the originals!! Briony is testing these out for another SL Arcadia curator named Grey Nacht! Grey, who is also getting his feet wet on the hypergrid, has been adapting, and creating new Flotsam scripts for OpenSim, including the cannons and explosions! You can get these working pieces as IAR files from The Friends of Arcadia Asylum G+ Community or just show up on :
sanctuary.homelinux.org:8012:The Spirit of Arcadia 12
and start copying!
All of Grey’s fantastic new pieces are not yet up and running, as we all put our heads together and rethink what the museum will look like in the future.
Probably not so much like this anymore. Probably BETTER, hehe! Of course it will mean changing all my descriptions on the OpenSim World Directory, but-oh heck I didn’t tell you about that!! This is another cool resource for Newbies, where region owners can put thier regions details in an online directory. For each entry they recieve a code. This is then placed in a beacon on your region, and folks can use an OpenSim World HUD to find you!! So newbies can give themselves a guided tour of the hypergrid! The website also tells you if a region is online. A lot of people have tried to create something like this, but this system is hands down the best!! You can get the beacons and HUDs inworld on Metropolis Grid at:
And do NOT forget to send your Newbies to Selea’s World , for region after region of beautiful free creations!! Yes, everyone’s favorite elf was temporarily out of business, but this powerhouse is back to STAY !! I was so thrilled to see her home again, I could have cried !! What a fighter!!
And the OS Grid came back on line, just like that- shocking the hell out of everyone! The internet was buzzing, “It’s back !It’s back!” People were asking ME on facebook, “What do you mean it’s back? Like it’s open?” All my friends were rushing over to see if their stuff was still there, the Plaza was full of people shouting “Hi!! Great to see you” and dancing around doing wacky animations! Of course those people all left before I could get a picture. The people you see here are all busy with their viewers, howling across the room “What the hell do they mean is my inventory all there? Who the f**k knows what they have in their inventory?” Like a great many people, my feelings about the OS Grid had become mixed, but seeing everyone so happy to be a community again really warmed my heart. Hylee Bekkers is going back home, Lani’s wonderful sci fi regions, are already up and running,the Maritime Club is back home in Belfast, the Hypergrid Safari is back up on Teravus , and I am planning on dusting off my old landmarks and seeing who else is back. The OS Grid has a great community, and I congratulate them, and wish them all the best!
And now my dearest dears, I must love you and leave you! I will be going to the USA to visit my family and am seriously running out of time before I have to fly! So sorry this is not my usual 50,000 word opera, and to jump ahead of that rumor mill:
1) My health is rapidly improving. I traded in my crappy barely more qualified than an orangutan schnozz quack for a fancy ass new university professor who has shoved all manner of things up my face and pronounced me allergic to most, if not all, of the plant life known to science. I have lots of vicious new meds, and am getting better everyday.
2) I still live on Craft, I still have my 2 region museum there. I just don’t have time to blog about them this week. Look at my OpenSim World pages on them if you want some info- I have a teenager to pack!!
3) I am still a Metaverse Tour Guide; check out our G+ community if you would like more info!! We have been up to all kinds of stuff; all of it fun, most of it legal!
I would like to apologize to Min and Taarna and Tosha and Serene, I wanted to blog about their stuff, but am just out of time!! I will catch you next time I promise! And I would like to thank all the people who participated in Cornflakes Week once again, especially Echo Argent for offering to co moderate the G+ group. With the OS Grid back up, maybe we can track down some of Corny’s lost pieces!! I would also like to thank everyone in the Arcadia Asylum G+ Group, especially Brionyand Grey and of course Brian, who amazingly turned his heart attack into stuffed vendors,. Thanks to the Metaverse Tour gang, Avia Bonne, Selea Core for coming out swinging, Zinnia Frenzy for all her incredible work organizing Robstock 2015, Minethere Always, Sunbeam Magic, Crystal Brewton, Hylee Bekker, Taarna Welles, Tosha Tyran, and a big big thanks and bear hug to the one and only Shaun Emerald, for his unfailing support and genuine friendship.
And to that friend whose path has not crossed mine for a time….
The sweetest of dreams and the brightest of days to all of my beloved readers! Until next time, Adieu!