Katleen Gabriels, student at the RUG is looking for Flemish Second Life residents customers that are willing to help her out by donating +- 2 hours of there time:
In het kader van een thesisonderzoek aan de Universiteit Gent, ben ik naarstig op zoek naar Vlaamse Second Life-gebruikers die willen deelnemen aan een focusgroepgesprek. Dat is een wetenschappelijke techniek waarbij minstens zes personen samen in groep zitten om gedurende +- 2 uren te praten over een gericht onderwerp. Het specifieke onderwerp kan ik niet vrijgeven, omdat deelnemers dan al kunnen nadenken over potentiële antwoorden, wat beeldvervorming kan opleveren. Ik verzeker je dat het een normaal onderwerp is en dat ik niet uit ben op het ontfutselen van details of sensationele verhalen.
Het zou heel fijn zijn als je zou willen deelnemen! Indien je dat wenst, kan dat anoniem gebeuren. Adressen of namen moeten niet gepubliceerd worden. Het enige wat ik zeker nodig heb, zijn geslacht, leeftijd en socio-demografische informatie (bvb opleidingsniveau, beroep, gezinssituatie…). Van het gesprek wordt een geluidsopname gemaakt, maar ik verzeker jullie dat alles deontologisch en enkel in het kader van het onderzoek zal verlopen. Verplaatskosten worden vergoed.
Over plaats, datum en locatie van het gesprek kan ik momenteel weinig zeggen, omdat ik dat van de deelnemers laat afhangen. Stel dat de meesten uit dezelfde provincie komen, dan zorg ik dat we in die provincie afspreken. Het focusgesprek zou voor eind maart moeten plaatsvinden. Ik vermoed dat een dag in het weekend of een avond door de week het handigste zal zijn, specifieke afspraken kunnen gemaakt worden via een ‘Doodle’.
Ik hoop dat je het ziet zitten, of het ten minste overweegt, om deel te nemen. Het zou voor mijn onderzoek heel veel betekenen. Je kan mij contacteren via firstname.lastname@example.org
As I previously mentioned briefly, a bunch of ‘us, avies’ went to see Lisa Gerrard - singer of Dead Can Dance - perform at the Koningin Elisabethzaal in Antwerp. I must say I really looked forward to this and the people joining me lived up to expectations. Even the stranger. ;)
My fellow avatars
We had a nice talk in an Irish Pub - mean people there, did not want to feed me apple pie! - about Second Life and things beyond that (amongst others, first life). What actually did help to get the talking going - I think - was that the stranger needed to be convinced that Second Life is not to be compared with ‘normal’ video games. You can use it or abuse it, as with all things in both lifes, I think. Ow, and Dalien just had to close his eyes and overexpose when I took his picture. So as for punishment, he has been replaced by a VintLabs hand drawn stick man. *sticks out her tongue*
So a huge thanks to Loki Popinjay for organising this - and paying for the drinks, we should go out more often! ;) - and to Mylena Aquitaine, Luna Zolnir, Dalien Talbot and the stranger for attending. *smooches all*
Lisa ‘Fairytales’ Gerrard
And then there is the concert from Lisa Gerrard. I must admit, if it were not for the company making that kind of music more agreable to listen to, I would have probably left the concert hall. Although I appreciate Dead Can Dance music, this performance by Lisa alone was just totally and utterly boring. It sort of reminded me of a mixture between wale sounds relaxation CD’s and Helmot Lotti. Need to say more*? Yeah, I could mention that the dress she wore was butt ass ugly, white, ‘heavenly’ and shiny and made her look like a 550 year old elven which still wears white although she had numerous boyfriends which all ditched here because she was not able to show emotion. At all.
Because that was the main problem with Lisa Gerrard’s music: she can not ditch the sweet, soft even childish voice way of singing she has. She tried to do evil, yet it continued at sounding monotonously innocent. It’s not that I do not like fairy tale music, I just like my fairy tales a bit more dark!
So, if I may do a suggestion, next time we are going to listen to a real singer? And include Bella March in the company too?
This is the singer / performance artist I associate live, female singing with: Diamanda Galas. She’s just… well… wow! So, let’s go and watch a show of her? =)
The human is complaining about rain, slippery roads and darkness. I’m all ‘happy-joy-joy’ because I will get to see Loki Popinjay, Mylena Aquitaine, Lena Kennedy* Luna Zolnir, Dalien Talbot (again) and a - hopefully - good performance by Lisa Gerrard.
No time to put links here though, or I will be late. :p
*jumps for the car*
*I realised this mistake when we were at the Irish pub and apologized to you! But you were to busy convincing the lady of the possibilities and not-evilness of Second Life to answer. So I reckoned it was OK and you would not hold any grudges towards me for this. :p
Only when our skilled building team took a closer look at this holy building to make a plan of action for inside restorations - the sim Bruges took care of the outer part -, we realised that with an old building comes a lot of trouble. Take for instance the ceiling of the chapel: flattened and painted it over with an ugly boring grey. Sadly enough our expert team had to conclude that in no possible low-prim way we could restore that ceiling to it’s original beauty. Someone also covered up the beautiful tiled floor - luckily not beyond repairs -, wallpapered the stone wall and stole all the artefacts, paintings and other belongings.
Armed with that information, the VintLabs team decided they would do the best they could and started to work on restoring - as far as possible - a corner of the Bloedkapel. The scrubbing and cleaning payed off, and soon we had a nice and shiny tiled floor again. Although they could not restore the original ceiling, the team brushed and polished, until the filled up ceiling texture was as shiny that it would reflect that tile floor.
The rest of the story is a bit vague. Although we all agreed at VintLabs that we would not use any bright pink - really, no can do for a chapel that was once dedicated to the greatness of God - we suspect one of our interns did not get that message clearly. When we went to work one morning, we entered the chapel only to see our beautiful restored corner had now grey wallpaper texture with all kind of ‘gradiented’, flashy, shiny metal objects sticking to the wall. The intern claims he didn’t notice anything strange before locking the door and going home the night before and that it must have been His Work, His Will. We always knew she was a bit strange and had a hang for pink - that’s why she got hired at VintLabs in the first place - and don not buy this story. But really, would you sack someone for using pink?
Anyway, in chance that it was after all His Work and Will, we decided to leave the pink as it was and asked the building contractor to texture the rest of the walls in grey that would match the pink. That friendly man also finished off the complete floor and ceiling for us and now we are happy that the first, huge works are finished.
Only the real interior design left to do. We’ve already hung up some shelves and are really proud of the shadow work on those and the shadow these shelves cast. We have a counter and are still brainstorming over the rest of the design: mirrors, a waiting corner for the gent’s, … .
But I can’t shake off the feeling that something is strange about that chapel. We have put up two modelling dolls made out of sculpted prims for later use. A male and a female mannequin we thought to be fit. But upon entering in the morning, we found the male mannequin lying on the ground on a blood texture. The lady mannequin was still standing upright, an axe in her hand. Did the male doll try to sexually harass the female one? Did she act out of self defence? How did that axe get into the chapel? Nobody knows…
Sunday afternoon Second Life machinima footage was shot to be used in Praga Khan’s theatre show ‘Frame by Frame, where Art meets Technology’. The machinima will be projected when the public enters the theatre halls, showing them how our avatars be seated on floating chairs.
They also recorded some Second Life party footage: lots and lots of dancing avatars on two - obviously sponsored - dancing floors. It’s only later I realised that that party scene lacks the true Second Life spirit: no particle effects, no dancing orbs, no pole dancers, dancing animations that would make Veyron cry humiliated and.. - maybe the worst - no dancing cows! If I understood correctly that material is to be used for the theatre show outro in combination with the song ‘Power of the Flower’. Which makes me think, why didn’t they use a couple of this flowers as dance floor? =)
Praga Khan’s shows are known for top notch visual effects, so I have my hopes up high for the end results. And, as usual with such things, I wonder if Maurice Engelen will use it’s avatar Maurice Ninetails - born on the 6th of October 2007 - ever again.
There are two - very short - recordings of the recording of the Second Life machinima in the Frame by Frame videocloud. Strangely enough, they do not seem to capture the in-world footage with Frapps or the like, but rather just film the monitor. Anyway, look for ‘Second Life shots “Artfabric Lab”‘ and and ‘Praga in Second Life - Recordings “Artfabric Lab”‘ in the Praga Videocloud. It might look flashy, but is far from handy if it comes to direct linking. And when you’re there, also check out the ‘Computer Dance Act’ video: wouldn’t it be neat if our humans could ‘drive’ us that way? We definitely need Moven suits for the Second Life masses! ;)
Conclusion? Frame by Frame, where Arts meet Technology does look like mixed media heaven. Can the owner still exchange Lisa Gerrard tickets for some of Maurice Engelen’s Frame by Frame? ;)
Update: found a promo interview - in Dutch - with Maurice Engelen about Frame by Frame: where art meets technology. If somebody feels an English transcription is needed, let me know.
Sammy Bourne - the ‘Bourne’ part of BridgesandForrester(andBourne?) together with Stargate Enterainment - throws a Real Life Second Life party slash meeting on Saturday October 13th. That’s in less than two weeks!? And no, I did not get an invite, and yes, I needed to find out via SecondLifeCrew.be. Aargh! :d
I can not find much info about it, but here is what I know:
Saturday, October 13th 2007 from 8pm - 1am (CET that is? ;))
Entrance fee: 5k L$ (which does include coupons for 6 drinks).
If they do not get 100 people enlisting for the party, it will be cancelled and the L$ will be refunded.
They promise live DJ’s (Duh! It’s first life, after all), gigs, Second Life gadgets and much more.
Reasons to go
Now, why would I consider attending this Belgian Second Life meeting?
Shaking Pieter Bosch’s paw hand.
Reasons to not go
And what keeps me away?
A bunch of Belgian Second Life residents - including me - have already agreed upon meeting at a concert in November. I am really looking forward to that, as - despite having RL data on most - I’m really really curious about the real life interaction.
Long distance driving at night.
The ‘danscafé’ description of the party place reminds me of a local one where - despite good company - I need to be far from sober to last more than 1 hour before saying ‘I go home’. Which does not match with ‘long distance driving at night’.
Nobody from my ‘narrowed down SL friend list’ - take Vint’s Second Life friend list and do ‘/20′ - is going. As far as I know. Of course, if they are going and did not tell me, they are off the narrowed down SL friend list. :d
It all depends on who is going.
Basically, what I want to say, depending on who is going in combination with ‘reasons to go’ 1 to 4 I might be able to get over ‘reasons to not go’ 1 to 3. So, let’s hear it, who’s going? If you are a Belgian avatar - and I’m aware of that and you think I like you - and are not planning to attend, please tell me too, then I’ll at least know for sure that you are _not_ going.
More information, please!
Questions surrounding the Belgian Real Life Second Life meeting on October 13th still to be answered:
What is the deadline for registering / paying the 5k L$ and when will we be informed if the party will actually take place?
Will there be a chance to brush up on my French? Or is it a Flemish Second Life meeting, not a Belgian? And where do I find a flyer in Dutch, French and English?
If I would attend, you do not expect me to dress in animal print, do you?! ;)
Yesterday ZORRA, a Belgian media watcher known for it’s yearly award award for the the most womanfriendly and/or role bending advertisement, opened the ‘Gender & Advertising’ exhibition in Second Life. The exhibition brings together 10 years of advertising conserning gender, stereoptypes and role bending - good example ads, bad example ads, funny ads and controversial ads - of which this one from Mercator Insurances is still my personal favorite.
When asked about why doing this overview in Second Life and not on a webpage, Adalace Jewel said ZORRA prefers SL for the ‘face to face’ discussion, or at least the crazy feeling of social interaction by using an avatar. Because that is exactly what ZORRA is seeking, that after looking at the ad exhibition, avatars sit down at the Gender Square and start to talk about the advertisements they have just seen, especially those who have never had in their first life the chance or the time to reflect on the topic of (in)equality in the representation of men and woman in advertising.
As the exhibition also features a huge sign saying ’stereotypes, consume them with reason’, I wondered how that matched with Miss Jewel’s avatar being one full of stereotypes: a beautiful skin, nice shape and a short coctail dress.
Adalace Jewell: ‘Well, personally I do not mind stereotypes. Just don’t consume them without thinking’.
If you want to check out the exhibition - featuring advertisements from Fortis, Ché, Feeling, … - you can do so by looking for ‘Gender Square’ in Search - include mature results - or by using this SLurl to the Gender Square. If you want a guided tour, IM Adalace Jewel or Zebo Spitteler.