Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Discover am Creative with small c

Mentions in PhD student's talk: too many to (disconcerting)

Decided to follow disconcerted theme, by recalling talk given by student at last week's Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education conference. Presentation was on creativity in SL teaching and several slides devoted to showing creative development of Sheila Yoshikawa. Used framework of different kinds of creativity, suffice it to say that this blog was given as example of pro-c which came as surprise as is vying for Least-Professional-Output-of-Sheila prize. However, was v. flattering and will take compliments where can get them.

Here is Ridvan showing pics of SY over time. Actually think all of them look v. good. That jacket in first pick is vintage Last Call.  Enough said. Am always happy to look at pictures of self, but felt should be expressing embarrassment in some way. However, is limit to number of times can say lol in text chat without looking idiot. Suffice it to say was glad that was exquisitely dressed in mori girl outfit that had gathered praise from all and sundry (i.e. a couple of people had said cute avi).

Am now pondering how can achieve big C creativity, meaning genius "reserved for the eminent and great".  Am sure that cannot be beyond one's reach in SL. "Your imagination, your world" eh?

Sheila Yoshikawa has just won a ::: B@R ::: Magical Inappi just for being here! and I am Disconcerted

Barerose items won 2: good and bad; People unexpectedly encountered when teleporting into home: 1 (disconcerting)

Am gift stalking in Barerose again. Tried yesterday and was rewarded by a gear bikini and today bagged a magical inappi. If wondering what Gear Bikini looks like, wonder no more as is pictured right, although as as said bikini is v.v.skimpy have retained long hair and taken mid-distance pic. Perhaps should have ditched boots as well. Bikini is rather unlike usual garb in which tend to cover all skin areas except face, so am filing that one in Unlikely Costumes folder.

Am sporting Magical Inappi in 2nd pic., which turns out to be rabbit-like shoulder-pet thingy. Will need to name Inappi: you get 2, so obvious solution is calling one In and the other Appi, though in fact neither one looks particularly 'appy (joke).

When TPed in to latest home, found random person there, so quickly TPed out again. Then sneaked back to take pic. Suppose more sociable person would have invited him to sit down and offered tea. Anyway, he does not appear to be bothering cats, so suppose is OK.

Sunday, 9 February 2014

Your object 'Duck' has been returned to your inventory Lost and Found folder

Sims reduced to earth, sky and sea: 1 (sad)

Received a series of messages from SL yesterday announcing that a variety of objects (stools, ferns, coffee makers, ducks, tabby kittens etc. etc.) had been returned to my Lost and Found by Art Fossett.

Knew that this could only mean that Eduserv island was no more. Went inworld today and found that there was nothing but sea and sky and, if went down a bit, featureless underwater land.
Presume that soon Eduserv sim will be only a Location Not Found. Hope that previous post on poor dead Mitsies didn't trigger this end of era experience.

So, Farewell Eduserv Island, you were loved once.

But, evidently, no more.

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

The walking dead Mitsy

Pieces of Mitsy still floating in Eduserv Ocean: many (spooky)

Realised that profile hadn't been updated in ages (much like this blog) and found that some info was out of date etc. etc. so needed to check pick landmarks. One pick is Eduserv Island and was surprised to find it still there since not sure Eduserv even funded any more. Even more surprised to come across pieces of cloned Mitsy still floating beside the old CILR office. Still some bits which move around and mew. No less spooky than it was six years ago.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Hot tubs. Time. Change/ no change.

Blogs disappearing beyond recall: about 20 (v. bad)
Sudden panic has driven me back to Yoshikawa blogland. Have class where force students to create team blogs, and yesterday found that team blogs from 2011 had suddenly gone phut, they were ex-blogs. Blogger sounded v. calm when told me each time that there was no such blog, but was v. upsetting. Think it is because students created them using uni email accounts which since expired, so are not active bloggers. However, idea of Adventures going phut too awful for words. Decided needed to Keep Blog Active.

So, surprisingly, here are a few random thoughts of the day.
1) Hot tubs, changing yet changeless. Hot tubs were amongst early purchases in 2007, in fact venerable examples still inhabit inventory as throw v. little away. This hot tub is in some ways an advance (it has curves, water goes in and out, there are 6 poses in each corner, it is not very many prims). On the other hand, it still looks pretty much like a hot tub circa 2007 in essential i.e. has wooden bit on outside, watery bit on inside, a few folderolls like candles and think those are meant to be rose petals although they look more like mishapen saucers, you sit in it, end of story.

2) On the other hand, seems to have been great advances in gym equipment. Look, am evidently strongest avatar in universe since can lift heavy weights with one arm. This was in a shop the name of which escapes me (no change there, then) where I ended up carrying off a punch bag and some bongos. And possibly something else. Did I buy that fireguard? Think not. Was one of those shops with lots of things at 300 Linden plus, so when you come across something cute at 90 Linden you immediately snap it up. Punch bag has v. amusing set of animations and bongos have both sound and silent options whilst you play them, so can practice without annoying neighbours. Since bought them and then forgot had bought them do not yet have pics.

3)World's End Gardens continues photogenic. Saw in someone's blog that WEG is about to go phut, too. So thought should visit it a last time. Bought a clump of blue roses and did a lot of posing with some balloon animations that discovered in inventory. Arty or what.

4) Eyes and cats are go.
 Kittycats are still darlings of my SL, and the animations just get cuter and cuter (hold! follow! make random inane remarks!). However sometimes the kitties go a bit odd, with part of the body sitting up (for example) whilst the rest of the kittycat body stays put. Had particularly disconcerting moment when Marl's eyes stayed where they were whilst rest of head was lowered. This brings together two of my most popular tags i.e. eyes and cats.
Think this is possibly Art. Question is: who created it, me or the kittycat? Still, since Linden Lab now owns everything created by anybody in SL, is rather meaningless to ponder on this.

Monday, 11 February 2013

Reminiscence. Mesh heads. Kitana.

Items gifted at Barerose: 6 (good); SL consumer trends as reflected in inventory at Barerose: 3 (trendy); Months since last blog post: 5 (whatever) 

Spent last night stalking raffle globe in Barerose. Reminescent of old times so decided ought to unleash new blog post. Am surprised to see after all these months that still have 31 followers (though have my doubts about the follower named ZaLV0fYV2Z7OF_LohUC0.m.j7rqKUg). Suppose they have forgotten were following and will be surprised and no doubt delighted to see new Yoshikawa post popping up on their dashboard.

Must have got bout of nostalgia for Old Blogging Times after seeing Barerose refreshingly unchanged i.e. still consists of huge structure like tacky gothic cathedral with walls filled with piles and piles of stuff in no particular order (see pics 1 and 2). Most stuff priced at something like 179 Linden which sounds cheaper than it actually is, so immediately tempted to snap things up esp. if e.g. box of cute floral chiffon tops which is nestling in a bank of costumes for obscure old anime series. Think Barerosers must really be fiendishly sharp businesspeople.

The Raffle Orb detects who is in its orbit and periodically shouts e.g. "ChocolateMunchie Resident has just won a ::: B@R ::: Gold Long Dress just for being here!" Probability is that wouldn't want most of items anyway, but is worth it to find out what some of the things are e.g. what on earth is an "Abs. Dress  C1", apart from being a dress, obviously.

My loot so far for hanging round in the Barerose orb zone (I am in evening dress in foreground of pic 2) is:
- Two mesh heads, one Furry, one not
- Knee length striped dress
- Display katana x 2
- Fancy white fantasy armour with wings
- Spooky Bat avatar
You can see them in their boxes here. Unfortunately none of these were item that caused raffle-stalking in the first place i.e snake neck wrap.Wanted it as in RL was born in Year of the Snake which is also THIS year, so from this you can guess that am at or nearly one of following ages: 12, 24, 36, 48, 60, 72, 84, 96. Will give clue that isn't 12 or 96.

Anyway to return to loot, have to admit that anticipation was rather more than the actuality. Indeed to be frank; - are those heads Sheila Yoshikawa style? Think not. How often have you seen me in a demon avatar? Never. And what home requires 2 identical display kitana? Well, actually, could see those nestling in twin niches in some swanky Japanese mansion.

That trip to Barerose reveals top 3 trends in SL fashion consumerism, as evidenced by type of stuff on sale. These trends are:
- Mesh. Most designers now putting things out in mesh, despite fact that means that a) you can’t layer properly and b) you have to have a shape either very thin and straight or VERY curvy with unfeasibly small waist aka Standard Sizes (Xtra Small to Large).
- Petites. Apparently lots more people want to go round as tiny people, and now they have lots of clothes to do it in.
- Add-on breasts aka Lolas aka Tangos aka Lush (etc etc). SL now populated by far more avatars with huge fronts, which bounce in an oddly realistic and disturbing fashion. Or perhaps disturbance not that odd. Anyway lots of designers now issuing clothes with quaintly named Appliers which mean that their clothes adapt to these appendages. Started by being just designers of a more Saucy nature, but has definitely gone mainstream. Thus some of Barerose boxes depict t-shirts and fantasy battle armour of eye-popping proportions.
If this all sounds v. unpleasant is simple solution i.e. to use SL browser that can't see mesh. This reduces Lola-wearing mesh petites to a disembodied name-tag and perhaps the odd non-mesh fairy wand.

Friday, 14 September 2012

A sad sad sight

Heritage sites disappearing: 1 (v. bad)

Was taking some pictures this morning e.g. of this truck that crashed into side of new house when it slowly dawned that THERE WAS NO COWELL SEASIDE VILLAGE ANY MORE. At first had just assumed had set draw distance to a low figure and therefore wasn't seeing this pretty village which was the key reason for getting the land in the first place.

However, checked draw distance, realised could see things that were FURTHER AWAY (i.e. Abotts spacedrome) and eventually flew over to find that one whole sim's worth plus a bit more had been abandoned and was set for sale. This is what it looked like just now. You can see a bit of what it looked like BEFORE in the final pic in this post and Chimera posted some pics here

It had a bit of a retro feel as it hadn't changed from when I discovered it in 2007, but still charm and atmosphere.

But not any more, it is an ex-village. Had panic attack thinking of dreadful things that could arrive there, and in grip of this got Dimitrova (since it is less disasterous for her tier charges) to buy up one chunk that includes the nearest half of the island bit and a slice going over the mountain on the right (it was all lumped in together). Will think what to do by Dimi's tier date in a week; can't afford to increase my tier overall, but would like to keep at least the island bit as a cushion, and could sell off a bit of what have at the moment....

Sunday, 29 July 2012

New life

No. of new kitten boxes: 1 (exciting!)
Finally succumbed to temptation to let my kittycats create beautiful kitten boxes together. Set Snowfall and Tassie to "breed on" a few weeks ago, which meant that at once was having to shell out more Linden for kittycat food as breedable cats eat twice as much. Then after about 10 days set Tassie to partner Snowfall. Tassie made some coy remark about only having just met (as if! she was there when he emerged from the kitten box, there is photographic prooof) which evidently comes from the kittycat random-twee-remark generator.

Have not been in SL much for the last week, and therefore was surprised and delighted to get an IM announcing the happy event (i.e. Tassie giving birth to a kitten box). When went inworld at first was unable to locate a) kitten box b) Tassie or c) Snowfall. After some camming around discovered a) (Kittenbox) abandoned outside the house (see first pic) b) (Tassie: fond mother) chasing butterflies round the opposite side of the house and c) (Snowfall: proud father) hiding under the floorboards. Seems like the new kitten box is doomed to be the victim of a dysfunctional family right from the start.

The new update allows you to click on the kitten box and see a 2D portait of the yet-unborn kitten, so you can decide whether to birth it or not. Obviously once it has looked at you with its v. cute whiskers and pretty ears it is more difficult to resist. Look! He has his mother's eyes, they are so adorable! (etc. etc.) And he would make a charming mate for Ninetails, in only a few weeks they could be making kitten boxes of their own. It is a primrose path to pouring linden into the kittycats coffers (i.e. for more and more food).

Should note that this breeding thing is a frightfully chaste process, as apart from eating more kittycat kibble there is no noticeable change in kitty behaviour and certainly no Lewd Acts. Once had retrieved Snowfall from under the floor and Tassie from her walk outside the house, let them wander round until they fortuitously both ended up trapped by a japanese screen, and I took a picture (3rd pic, Tassie is on the right)

They may be saying "let our kittenbox live". Or they may be thinking "when is our next kittycat kibble meal". Or as they are in fact pixel cats, it is also possible that they are not thinking anything at all.

BTW if you have any views one way or the other, feel free to comment on whether Son of Tassie should be released from his box to eat up my Linden.

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Lost and found

No items in inventory: 58,000 (good); No. of items in inventory when logged in last night: 19,600 (v. bad)
Was procrastinating on Infolit iSchool last night, changing some furniture in the Wilf Saunders library, when thought would try rezzing some possible replacement builds. Need to consult Maggie first, but as demolishing common room to put up a conference centre, am considering making library into library/social venue. Am sure David Cameron would approve, as he and his chums always seem to be encouraging librarians to do things librarians have been doing for years e.g. lending CDs and selling coffee.
Anyway, was only when kept getting no hits in inventory search that finally realised that was not because too many items are in wrong folder. Was, rather, because NONE OF THE FOLDERS HAD ANYTHING IN THEM.

Icey finger of fear clutched at heart, but did some quick googling, and soon came across  lots of Don't Panic messages which indicated that was most likely that inventory wasn't loading. Followed some instructions from Rolig Loon (who must spend all her lifelife doing helpful posts) and within reasonable time inventory was cascading back into inventory folder.* Phew!

As a reaction to this decided to create new pixel life, so rezzed a kitten box I had purchased foolishly a couple of months ago and lo! there is a new kittycat for me to cuddle. It is a Bengal cat, with Odessey eyes i.e. they are different colours. Cute or what. Have called him Snowfall. This makes 6 cats altogether which is seriously approaching crazy cat lady territory, particularly when you look at the price of KittyCats food. First pic shows us all waiting for the kitten box to hatch, and 2nd pic shows Snowfall though at that point he was still just called Kitten.

Stone looked distinctly unenthused at the idea of a new male cat on his territory, and has taken to hiding under the floor even more often (see 3rd pic). Meanwhile, Ninetails is now full sized, but Snowfall is still at that age where he could get lost underneath a cushion, let alone underneath the house.

Whilst in Kitteycats main store noticed there was a HUD that enabled you to get your kitties to return to you even when you don't know where they are.
Hmmmmm. On one hand may regret not buying it if really do lose cat completely one day. On other hand, have been Hunting the Lost Virtual Cat for 5 years now, ever since Mitsy started throwing herself into sea on Eduserv island. It's a sort of ritual.  And at least kittycats don't disintegrate into disembodied paws and heads like Mitsy did.

BTW am also labouring at a serious post on "Twitter vs. SL" reflecting on experience of Twitter-only discussion about info literacy. Will of course be last word on the matter of Twitter vs SL and do not offer any prizes for guessing which one is winner in my book. Do they have kittycats on Twitter, who whimsically hide themselves under the floor and behind the furniture?** I rest my case.

*Practical info. To get inventory back, cleared cache (in Preferences, think it was Advanced tab), logged off, logged back in somewhere else and typed an "a" into the search box of inventory, then waited impatiently as the inventory count went up and up.
** the answer is "no".

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Cats, Hair, Bots

Emails received from virtual cats: 10 (good); Visibility of mesh: erratic (bad); Tail positions: unfortunate (v. bad)
Was overwhelmed with emails from Stone and Tassie on Monday demanding food and attention. Such an improvement on RL cats which can only meowl and look pained, not only have SL cats mastered email skills, also can tell me preceisely how hungry they are e.g. "40%".
Fortunately got to them before they were 100% hungry as at that point they retire to their themometers and blankets and linden must be paid to get them back to good health. Here I am showing Tassie I care, using cute "hold" pose. Is only one thing wrong with this pose, as can be seen if look closely at pic. Prompts thoughts such as "is that a kittycat you are holding or are you just glad to see me?" Would probably be good idea if kittycat tail vanished in this animation, or at least coiled discretely out of sight.

Am wearing new hair from Truth, but expenditure has been curbed somewhat as am being v. cautious about buying mesh clothes. Was incident of being filmed by Pancha when wearing nice mesh sweater and hair and looking like I had no torso but a bald head, and also when bumped into Kali and friends and it emerged that they were using non-mesh viewers.  Can't imagine why anyone who doesn't know what mesh is would read this blog, but anyway, mesh is new way of making stuff, using computer aided design; like sculpties, but it's not sculpties, it's mesh. Plus side of mesh is that it can curve to follow your avatar movements, minus is that you can't resize it if it's this flexible "rigged mesh".

Thus to fit different sized avis you get several sizes of (e.g.) the dress, which is all very well, but they are "standard size", which means you end up a standard size rather than your actual shape. This generally means buxom, with a small waist and biggish hips but a flat bottom. Do not want to be that shape. Combo of ill-fitting clothes and social embarrassment of having vital bits missing = avoidance of mesh.

Am also myself finding that when come across new mesh objects they are invisible first time round e.g. try on a mesh skirt and it looks like it isn't there. Relog and magically I can see it. Increasing numbers of people at meetings are thus suffering from bits-missing syndrome e.g. in VWER today there was chap who was mostly just head and extremities, and last week there was a woman was was mostly hair (see pic): very nice hair too, went off after the meeting to find the shop.

Next pic also shows mesh issue (see chap on far right, look no body) in after-VWER visit to a bot-shop where was being shown the Quasimodo Merlin bot (the one with steampunk wings: actually realise now that you can't really see him in this pic, he is hidden by my Big Hair, that thought bubble is coming out of his head). Quasimodo was eccentric bot who disliked people he had only just been introduced to (he actually said "I dislike x", x being Suzanne who was just trying to make polite conversation with him). Therefore ended up being something of a bait-the-bot session, though in a polite educators sort of way. Quasi has been programmed to write vogon poetry and his poem for me on the subject of "Jubilee" was as follows (copyright to him, obviously)
"among shops futuristic jubilee
Label interpreted jubilee!
You extended parkey.
Out of the water, budgeted bugbee.
All taste fielded plumlee.
Good and plenty, allocated lordy.
Sheilas suit entertains parkey"

Could spend hours deconstructing this. The first lines seem to be corruscating commentary on the extent to which the Queen's Diamond Jubilee has been turned in a commercial event. "Parkey" is of course reference to popular but ageing UK TV personality Michael Parkinson, a former chat show host. "You extended parkey" must be compliment to the dedicatee (me) implying that my witty repartee would stretch Parkey's powers, and indeed provide him and his audience with entertainment ("Sheilas suit entertains"). This appears to be in contrast with some dull minor royal who has been foisted onto Parkey as a guest ("allocated lordy") with an affected plummy accent ("fielded plumlee"). Not sure about the fourth line. Perhaps there has been flooding, but fortunately there is sufficient Parkinson Show budget to mop it up so we are "out of the water".

Great stuff.

And to finish with, here I am balancing on a table.

Thursday, 3 May 2012

I celebrate my Rez day with the cats

No of years in SL: 5 (good); No. of cats in SL: 5 (furry; well, sort of); No. of times interviewed in SL: lost count (bad)

Another year another Rez Day and here I am celebrating my 5th, with the same old animated birthday cake over my head. Earlier in the day had been marginally more social.
Had been asked by Kali to transcribe at the VWER meeting, and so had hour rattling away at keyboard. Up side is that had to stay awake and pay attention, down side is that by end fingers felt partially detached from hands through overuse.

Took along newest kitty acquisition, vis, Tassie. She is seal point siamese, and is named after The Silver Tassie, as in Burns' poem. In fact almost called her Tassel*, but thought that sounded too much like I was considering using her tail for a bell-pull. Since she is still only a few days old, she sits on my shoulder rather than being held, which is very much in the cute-or-what-category. Can see in the 2nd pic what Tassie looked like when newly rezzed i.e. small lump of clay.

Returning to subject of Rez Day, had thought about attaching sign to head with something amusing e.g. Rez Day Girl! However a mere nanosecond of reflection revealed that this would not be amusing at all, so didn't. Did receive one IM from someone wishing happy rez day, so am grateful for small mercies. Outside SL have reached stage where get v. few actual birthday cards. Thank goodness for Facebook, as got lots of Happy Birthdays on there, where would one be without social networking.

After the VWER meeting, got interviewed about teaching in SL, by a PhD student. Was thinking that could probably get article out of analysing all the squillions of interviews I've given about my teaching in SL. Would be interesting to compare what had said each time, though probably only interesting to me.

* I know that Tassie isn't short for Tassel, but they sound jolly similar.

Adventures of Yoshikawa

The blog of Sheila Yoshikawa on her adventures in Second Life. This may be very thrilling. Or possibly not.