Welcome to the seventh Sign of the Kite (SOTK) newsletter of 2016. Remember SOTK is the shortform newsletter that keeps you up to speed with all things Kitely and OpenSim. It is written BY residents FOR residents and is neither sponsored nor endorsed by Kitely. This newsletter is also available in pdf format.
Got news of your world or group, an event, a recruitment drive, a newsworthy shop, product or promotion? Drop a brief notecard on avatar Graham Mills_2 inworld or PM Graham Mills via the Forum. All that’s needed are 2–5 sentences with a title, URL and/or hypergrid address. All times in PDT, please, and nothing A-rated/NSFW. Copy deadline is 17:00 Wednesday for inclusion in Friday’s news.
Note that we’re currently running a fortnightly publication schedule.
Great to see lots of new faces at the Community Meetups on Sundays at 13:00 PDT. Note that the UK starts British Summer Time on Sunday (we know this as it will be raining buckets) so the normal time difference is reinstated (21:00 BST). As Brits will have lost an hour’s sleep, expect them to be bitter and twisted (yes, even more so than usual). Everyone else is expected to be more organised than Graham and arrive on time (or fashionably late in Graham’s case).
Mesh guru Ozwell Wayfarer has had to put the Spring merchant fair on hold until the Autumn while he takes care of other urgent business. Hurry back, Oz!
Serene helpfully updated the list of current events based on the Kitely Events Google Calendar. To Sunday they include:
Sat – Mar 26 – 1 pm PT – Metaverse Tour Meet at Crossroads region
Sun – Mar 27 – Noon PT – Hypergrid WIP at Cookie II region
Sun – Mar 27 – 1 pm PT – Kitely Community Meeting at the Kitely Welcome Center
Sun – Mar 27 – 3 pm PT – Motorboat races on Panthalassa courtesy of ultra-smart scripter Kayaker Magic.
Hot beverage update: Many thanks to Faye Doff for hosting Teatime on EYDIS over the past few weeks. In coming weeks we expect to be branching out to other locations so if you would be willing to host please contact Dot.
Kitely Events Calendar:
How to list an event on the calendar:
Skilled builder/scripters, i.e. not Graham, may be interested in approaches to generating reflections using projectors. Apparently this works on that other grid. Here?
Thirza Ember of Hypergrid Safari reknown does a great job in describing the machinations required to get sound into OpenSim.
Not so much a tutorial, more a way of life, Shandon noticed a heavily discounted Udemy MOOC* covering Blender albeit not, presumably, from a specifically OpenSim perspective. Quite a few folk on the forum found this interesting so there’s scope for a self-help group (subject, of course, to any Honor Codes, whatever they are). It’s unclear as to how long the discount code will work but given the title it may expire soon.
*Massive Open Online Course (not quite sure whether it entirely qualifies as open as there’s a $15 registration fee)
Details via Shandon:
- BLENDER CLASS – Learn 3D Modelling – The Complete Blender Creator Course
- Regular Price: $297 With Special Discount Code: $15.00
- Use Discount Coupon Code: MARCH0015
- 255 Lectures, 40 hours of video instruction, Lifetime Access, 30 day money back
- Available on computer, iOS and Android. And you get a Certification!
- Make beautiful stuff and bring it in to Kitely!
Graham nods but prefers not to put his head in a blender (or does he?) and casting around for idiot-proof alternatives lights upon Gravity Sketch which is now supported by Sketchfab. Sadly for Graham (collective sigh), it is iPad-only.
On the upside he did find this very nice CC-BY multifaceted (non-chocolate) egg by Sketchfab user:ayvlasov (ed: how is this a tutorial?).
Sketchfab helpfully provide an egg painter for those who want to do (roll?) their own. However, you do need to register. NB untested by Graham.
Little known facts
Did you know that Kitely was running in stealth mode in February 2009 and pre-launch in May 2010? The first live record in the Wayback Machine is April 2011. The first Welcome to Kitely blog went live on April 20th by which time the grid was just under four weeks old. Graham looks at calendar and pauses to count on fingers.
Happy Fifth Birthday, Kitely!
Ilan confirms that Kitely launched in beta on 27th March 2011. According to the blog the service moved out of beta when the billing system was completed on 2nd February 2012.
Seanchai Library update
As usual Shandon has lots of exciting news in the pipeline so expect more to come from that direction anon. In the meantime, there’s a holiday weekend in some parts of the globe as Easter beckons and chocolate consumption sky-rockets. In addition to live storytelling sessions, Shandon reminds us that Senefer’s Tomb is still open for intrepid exploring.
SEANCHAI LIBRARY EVENTS
Live storytelling presented in Voice
Thursday March 31st
7:00pm – 8:00pm PT
In keeping with long tradition, we get to watch a battle between a hero and a ferocious dragon of the genuine old-fashioned maiden-eating variety!
Thursday April 7th
7:00pm – 8:00pm PT
INTERNATIONAL DRAGON STORIES
Mmm, chocolate… sky-rockets?
Interesting NEW things at Kitely
JadaBright Pond’s excellent iteration of the Junkyard Blues Bar on Cookie II
Serene shared the text from last week’s Metaverse Tour which she led. In her words “The Cookie II revamp and the Karima Hoisan art world are both pretty darn cool….” (She’s waxed lyrical about Rezmela previously).
Imagine if you could push a button and watch a whole region appear! And then change it with the push of another button. This is what the RezMela board does and it’s way cool to watch it happen!
Things are changing at Cookie II. There’s a fresh welcome area, new freebie shops. A gorgeous theater. A new blues club. And much more!
In your Head
grid.kitely.com:8002:In Your Head
A new delight from artists Karima Hoisan and Dale Innis
“A trip inside two sides of the same sim-wide head. Jump on the tour and enjoy spiraling DNA, thoughts of love and ordered boxes, Sushi and strange rooms and smells of chocolate chip cookies and the color of analysis. Still being tweaked by the creators, Karima Hoisan and Dale Innis.” More to come on this…
New on the Market: Epiphany
Just a single item at the moment, a very tastefully executed table-lamp, from merchant/machinima artist Trine Epiphany who has a much larger store on that other grid but seems to be exploring the possibilities of export-enabled mesh in OpenSim.
Brought to you this week by the letter K.
Graham spotted an unusual sight on Kitely, a pro-built world for education (maybe there’s lots but they’re all private or only come out when Graham’s asleep). Vesuvius Group, a well-known contractor from that other grid, seem to have done the heavy-lifting on behalf of a project jointly run by two educational institutions from Georgia (US). More news as we get it.
Karl Kapp gave an especially interesting keynote on Reaching the Engagement Horizon in Virtual Worlds at the recent VWBPE16 and his slides and notes are now available.
Firestorm 4.7.7 arrived hot on the heels of version 4 releases of Alchemy and Kokua. Inara Pey does a great job of reviewing it so we don’t have to. A flick through the Firestorm download page revealed, however, that the latest version supports neither Windows XP nor Mac Snow Leopard and that 4.3.9 will be blocked imminently. On the upside, there’s also a handy download for C++ DLLs in case your install complains (also good for the other viewers). The new viewer supports the latest and greatest web pages (even A-Frame though not in Cardboard mode). Of course, if you must have Flash you will need to install it separately and the Firestorm blog presently leads on this topic. Psst: Graham got it to run on Windows 10 without doing a clean install. Don’t tell anyone and, of course, YMMV.
Would you like Three Wishes?
Here are Graham’s:
- For Kitely he’d like people to be able to pick an avatar when they signup,
- For viewers he’d like to be able to use Leap Motion gesture recognition to work with prims (and maybe voice recognition for text)
- For OpenSim he’d like to be able to make water-tight tunnels through and under terrain
Yes, that was four wishes but we only want three from you!
The “I can’t believe it’s not Blender” department
Big meshes giving you grief? Try this new instant-field-alignment software from the ETH-Zurich Interactive Geometry Lab (downloads for three platforms). Just backup everything first (this is Graham speaking, after all).
Graham had mixed results but probably lacks needful insight. If it works for you, do let us know.
Coming soon: Overgroan Island
Dot thinks another hypergrid treasure hunt is imminent. However, one enthusiastic seeker after objects bumped into the remains of the Kitely 2014 Egg Hunt and asked on the forums whether such could happen again. Be careful what you ask for: Graham has discovered a portal to a mysterious world called Overgroan Island. To be continued…
Revenge of the Prims on Overgroan Island
Bonus Sketchfab model for chocoholics
Sketchfab user:Louis kindly provides a model (CC-BY in STL format) that should play nicely with MeshLab and the Swiss instant-field-alignment thingummy-whatsit software. Louis even provides a link to a chocolate 3D printer. The Future is truly with us!
Next time: Healthy eating for avatars <sigh>
Production team: Dot Matrix, Serene Jewell, Graham Mills_2, Shandon Loring
This week’s editor: Graham Mills_2
Thanks to forum and community meetup participants for suggestions
Stay in touch
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On the Web
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Kitely Company blog:
On the Hypergrid
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