Nov 9, 2010

Adventure of the Beta!

Day 1 -Well, yesterday was my first day with the Viewer 2 Beta and it was an adventure!  I found that just standing in a sandbox for the first hour was the best thing I could do, just clicking on things and learning the interface.  It's very different than 1.23/Snowglobe and there is alot of adapting that has to be done, when you have been use to the old viewer.  The side bar does take some getting use to but, you do get use to it with some practice.  After the first 1/2 hour of confusion and a bit of fustration, I did begin to have some fun.
While in the sandbox, I decided to give a try with some building, which was just a simple box with a background texture, some grass and a sky for taking pictures if I decide to do that.  I was able to construct, texture, place and link without loosing my mind and had some fun with it.
Picture taking was another story, since I do like to play with mine and windlight and debugging.  I could not find windlight or debugging at all.  I finally went into one of my groups and out of desperation, I asked in there if anyone knew where to find it.  They were able to explain and direct me to the Advanced and Build menu but, that was about it actually.  After a little searching around, debugging was found, so I could put in the codes for rezzing sculpties and avoid cloud avatars but, Windlight escaped me. 
Walking and teleporting around SL was fairly simple and as I said, I did get use to the sidebar popping open when I opened a LM.  If you don't want to deal with the sidebar opening for every LM though, just undock the LM tab and minimize it.
The land restrictions are back up at the top, near the land name just like in the old viewer, so there was no need to adapt there.  The co-ordinates are not available though, which I found handy sometimes when I was looking for a place in the large malls and areas, if someone sent me a LM and the place has a forced landing area.
During my little sojourn, I was asked why I am even bothering to learn the viewer.  There are several reasons to that question.  The first one is, it's now the official viewer for LL so all the new residents who come in are going to use it.  If asked for help, since I had not really used it, I was never able to really help or answer any questions.  Next is the fact that alot of new features are coming, like meshes, shared media, display names and anything else that LL is going to develop and the only viewers that will see this, is the ones based on V2.  Eventually everyone is going to have to learn some version of this viewer, so why not give myself time to learn it before it becomes mandatory to learn it.  Last but, not least...I love a challenge and to try new things.  Giving something new a try and learning how to work with it, is something I just find interesting.  On that note, I end this day, so tune in tomorrow...same Grid time, same Grid channel.
Day 2 - Well, today went alot better and I was actually able to work around with the viewer a little more.  Before logging on, I decided to do a little more research and reading.  I located a few tutorials and guides for the viewer, though it's for the previous release, it all applies to the Beta.  I do have to give solid Kudos to Torley Linden for his tutorials, which are not only informative but, he does seem to be having alot of fun making them.
The Second Life Wiki was very helpful as well and through there, I located Torley's Windlight settings and instructions on how to operate it in V2.  After reading over the wiki page, I logged on and before you could say Boo, I had my windlight settings working.  While I was at it, I downloaded Torley's settings into the viewer and now have a very nice variety of choices for pictures.
My very first picture on V2 Beta!
As you can see, there is the interface which I didn't really intend to have in the photo but, I had to look for a few moments to find out how to take it off.  When you click on snapshot, you just uncheck a little box to make the interface disappear and then refresh the photo.
A second photo with a little more success!  
The one thing I did notice is that with V2, I do seem to freeze up every so often and the viewer stops responding for a few minutes.  I left it alone, to see if it would just crash but, eventually it did start working again.  A bug or a glitch maybe?  Well, it's called a Beta for a reason after all!
Day 3 - Well, the issue with the freezing and the jerky movements seems to have something to do with the HTTP textures.  I've unclicked it and I'm going to continue testing it on my desk top now.  The freeze up I'm not entirely sure but, it seems to occur because my CPU appears to go to 100% suddenly and freeze there for a minute before correcting and going back down to 77%, on my laptop.  It's possible that the V2 is not meant for laptops at all or for only the newest laptops that are available with more power than what I have.  I'll be researching it up more to see if it's possible with a few adjustments, if I can get the laptop to have the ability to run it.  The freezing up though does not really occur on the desktop computer from what I have seen so far, but it is a stronger machine that is directly hooked into the internet.  With Snowglobe, Phoenix, Ascent and viewer 1.23, I don't seem to run into the issues of freezing or jerky movements.  As I said previously, this is a Beta version so I know that there is fine tuning that has to occur, so running into things like this is actually a good thing!  You learn as you go and improve on things that need improving.
I'm still impressed though with the V2, despite the issues I have seen.  Rezz times are much faster and the graphics is very clear for me.  As with all viewers, I had to work a little with it but, I have the settings slowly setting up the way I want's just a matter of finding where they put some
Day 4 - I went to log in today and I wasn't able to.  A new release of the Beta was out, so before going online, I had to download that new version.  Now, the way I do updates like Beta's, I always like to do clean installs with them.  In the past when testing, I've had a couple of instances where I just updated and found out later that the bugs from the one, did not clear up as well as they should have with the update.  So I uninstalled the version I had, cleaned out my computer completely and then reinstalled the new version.
The new version of Beta had some interesting games for me to play, that was for sure.  After fixing it up with the settings I like (including Torley's windlight settings..he so rocks!) and looking at it to see what may have been improved, I found a puzzle.  It's called, "Who are you talking to?".  Not everyone but, a few friends had ???'s for their names now, including my name.
After clearing cache and relogging, a couple of names were back to normal, with the exception of mine.  Thankfully, I know who I am so it wasn't too bad but, it did cause a few chuckles from me and some friends in one of my groups.
I do have to say that the interface on this viewer is not as intrusive as I thought it was going to be and that rezzing with this viewer for me, is fast.  I've heard a number of individuals complaining about the viewer and to be blunt, I really thought my experience with this viewer would be much more negative.  I can say (with a straight face too) that I'm happily not having a negative experience.  There is some adjusting to be done but, if you just try to come at this viewer with a positive attitude and a little patience, you do adapt and enjoy it. (Keep in mind, I'm saying this from being on the Beta which can be fraught with bugs, glitches, hiccups and a few drunken swaggers.)
The Challenge continues tomorrow and I'll be wandering and finding some pretty places to take photos more, so there will be pictures to oooh and aaah
Day 5 - I logged in world today and the questions over my name are gone.  I didn't do anything different but, they are thankfully gone.  I did get a chance to do some wandering around today and enjoyed some of the sims that have been changing around their landscape to reflect RL seasons.  While wandering, I did get a chance to grab some photos as well.
One particular sim that really caught my eye was Runscape.  A really nicely put together sim, where there is many places to sit and just enjoy the surroundings.  I explored around the sim and feel in love with the colors, the atmosphere and the whole ambiance of the place.
Sitting on a tree swing enjoying the ocean view
I started to play with Torley's windlight settings here.
Still doing alot of practicing with the wind light settings but, I do love the look of the ocean and the sky here. 
Sitting in a tree and relaxing

Still playing around but, the V2 is taking really nice pictures.  I'm still learning so I'm an amateur but, with good wind light, great surroundings, and some patience, I'll get better over time.
Found a pumpkin to pose with!  
I found this pumpkin in my inventory and when I finally organize that pit of dispair, I'll be able to tell you where I found it.  Remember, do not let those inventories go, or you end up with something that can take on a life of it's own.  One of these days, I'll actually have it completely sorted out...I hope. 
As for the V2 itself, I'm finding the more time I invest in it, the more I understand and feel comfortable with it. 

Nov 8, 2010

Second Life Beta Viewer 2.3

I finally was able to get my computer up and running in a much better order and everything is finally updated (omg, can they come up with anymore updates??).  While I was loosing my mind, watching update after update loading up on my poor computer, I spent some considerable time wondering what to blog about next.  What adventure or exploration would be fun, interesting and new for me to do?  After I hit the 100th update, it dawned on me that I could do a little challenge for myself.  After reading thread after thread of differing opinions; regarding the Linden Labs newer viewer, I figured why not give it a go?  (Note:  No, watching all those updates go through, did not finally send me over the edge.)
When it was first introduced to the residents of Second Life, I did give it a quick try for about 1/2 an hour before shutting it off in fustration, uninstalling it and going straight back to the Snowglobe viewer.  I have to be blunt, it was a nightmare of a viewer and it just drove me crazy in that brief time, attempting to just figure out how to do the simplest things, like finding my groups and chatting with friends.  The camera controls; in that first viewer, was a massive turn off for me and was the deciding factor in my walking away from that viewer.
Since that first viewer, Linden Lab has done alot of work on it, attempting to make it more user friendly.  They have improved the issue with the chat, the ability to undock the sections of the side bar, fixed the camera controls (thank goodness for that one), put in the ability to morph your voice, shortened rez times down, and lately, given the ability to the residents to show different display names.  There is more but, I'm not going to go through the entire list of them and some I'm just going to have to learn about as I go along. 
Now the fun part:
1. Uninstall any other viewer and then download the Viewer 2.3 Beta from LL's site. (make sure everything from another viewer is completely gone from the computer, so that a clean install is done for the Viewer 2.3)
2. From Monday, Nov. 7th to 15th, exclusively use the LL's viewer only.  
3. Each day, I will document my experiences with the viewer, as I go around SL doing the normal things that I usually do, which is exploring and hunting.

I think that basically covers it, so let the fun begin!  Stay tuned for the Adventures of the Beta!

Oct 18, 2010

A fun toy for SL and Bloggers

While wandering around Second life, I've been seeing alot of little things to help enhance, enrich or just have fun with, in SL.  There seems to be a gadget or hud(heads up display) for something and anything you can thing up.  Gadgets and HUDS are usually things that attach to you or your screen that is scripted to do an action or keep track of something for you.
I have to admit to my very favorite HUD is the Mystitool.  I never leave home without that baby attached to my screen.  It's multi-functional and I have found it to be one of the handiest tools that are in my inventory.  It has an avatar radar on it, which lets you know who is around you and how far away they are from you.   A platform rezzer, great for builders, a face emoter which when taking pictures is nice to have to control your avatars expressions, a bug scanner, an anti-griefer tool and a variety of other things that are too numerous to list all at once.  I picked it up when I first came into SL, for free.  There is a free model and then there is the one that you purchase.  I've personally never replaced mine for the full version since I'm pretty happy with the free version.
There is also HUDS for games, for combats, for hunting and today I just found one that is for Blogging.  I actually found that one through the twitter account that I have.  Someone twittered about it and I, being the curious person I am, followed the link.  Like the Mystitool, there is a free version and a full version, which costs 1500L (ouch).  Feeling adventurous, I logged onto SL through the link on the site and low and behold I had my BlogHUD attached and running in no time at all.  Super easy to use and very nice to have, the only thing about the free version is that it blogs only to the BlogHUD site.  The full version though is capable of blogging to Blogger, twitter, Wordpress, Livejournal and a couple of other popular sites.  With the full version, you can add pictures to your posts and cross post to your different account on the blogs.
Am I liking this new little application?  Oh, you betcha I am!  Will I be forking over the 1500L for the full version?  Well, only time will tell on that but, I can say this much...I am enjoying blogging as I'm wandering around SL without having to even leave SL to give out my thoughts.
I do have to admit, it's a great tool for designers, store owners, hunt organizers, event organizers and anyone who deals constantly with the public.  You can continually keep in touch with your customers with very little effort and with alot of ease.  
To find out more about my new little toy, you can find the site for BlogHUD here.
My recommendation, try out the free version.  Sign up to the BlogHUD site for your own page and see what it does and how it works before making the commitment to buy the full version.   My opinion is already that this is a great tool, especially for the very active bloggers and something that would be used alot but, I have to be honest, that the price tag on this does make me hestitate a little, since it is pretty high for a gadget.  
To find my page on BlogHUD, just go here, and you will see what I am up to or even some of the finds that I am coming up with as I travel around.

Oct 12, 2010

Halloween Fun @ Sassy Kitty Designs Mainstore

While doing some hunting, one of my friends in Huntaholics and More, announced that one of my favorite stores was doing some scrumptious spoiling for her subscribers.  Sassy Kitty Designs, had set up their mall and store for Halloween and was giving away a bunch of delicious gifts.  Amelia(my friend), was so very kind to tp my tush over as quick as possible over to the store to partake in some very serious inventory loading.  Oh yes, this was a massive, gleeful, squeal inducing moment for me, since Sassy Kitty has many items out for her loyal customers.  
If you are not already signed up to her subscriber, now is the time to walk into that store and tap that board.  The items that she has set out on little hay carts are just to die for and if you are in the subscriber, it's free for you.  After tapping the subscriber, go browse and look at what she has..there is 5 carts that are in front of her store, filled with goodies to be had by all.
After having way too much fun filling my goodie bag with treasures, I went into the Halloween store she has set up near her main store and of course, could not resist grabbing the Romantic Empire Dress that I found there.  That you do have to pay for but, it was irresistible, as are the different items that are available there..except the Halloween teddy bear..he was free and you know I tucked him happily under my arm, before jumping on my broom to head off once more.
Romantic Empire Dress w/my Teddy taking a ride on my broom
*A little side note:  The broom is from Hopscotch.  She updated her broom recently so it's even nicer than before..if that was possible and the pumpkin is changeable, with several designs to choose from.  Hold  onto your chair though..she is only charging 50L for this.*
I do believe that this have really brought me up into the proper Halloween spirit, though Wilbur(yes, I named the Teddy Bear!), did seem to be a little nervous on his first flight.
Baroque Dress
 Is this hot or what?!  They had better be ready for me in the next Halloween party because this sure is going to turn heads!
Cascade dress
The Cascade dress is given in a fat pack.  The colors available are black, white and red.  This is just sexy as heck but, the lines are nice and simple, so a very complimentary piece that should be in your inventory.  It's not set for just Halloween either, this can be worn all year round.
Cutie Dress
Yes, it's actually a dress though it can be worn with or without the tights.  It's very into the season though there is an option of a regular skirt so it can be worn pass Halloween!
Corset black jeans w/folded Halloween top
There are several pants available on the carts but, I have to admit that this is one of my favorites there.  Mix and match is just great since it is what gives you versatility and you can create several different looks with just a few pieces.  The folded Halloween top comes in a fat pack, which gives you quite a few different choices.  When I opened it, I could not believe how many tops she included in the box.  
Cute Argyle outfit
Hot, sexy and just gorgeous are the first words that came to mind when I put this together.  You just have to love this look for wherever you want to go, either dancing, exploring, shopping or relaxing with friends.
These are just a taste of the wonderful goodies to be found over at Sassy Kitty Designs.  To see all of them, I suggest jumping on over and enjoying yourselves with the amazing things she has!
All I can say to Sassy Kitty is a giant thank you and Happy Halloween!

Oct 11, 2010

A Store Called Bleh!

Today, when I logged into SL I had my usual group of announcements to go through.  As a rule, there is normally about 8-10 of them to scan and read.  It's normal, as is my normal practice of just scanning through the messages and notecards quickly and then depositing them into my inventory to glance through them later if I find more time.  Today I had one that seem to catch my attention.  It wasn't a notecard but, just a group message with a landmark to follow.  One of the members in the Huntaholics group had come across this quaint store and was kind enough to pass the information to the rest of us in the group.  
Curiousity piqued, since there was mention of some nice freebies to be found, I hopped on over to find not only a quaint store but, some really cute styles to drool and fawn over.  Yes, I now have a few more outfits in my burgeoning inventory but, that is besides the point.  Everything in this store is free.  I double checked and then triple checked to make sure that I was reading the prices right and it's true.
The designs are appealing, versatile pieces, that you can mix and match with ease, with other items that are already in your inventory.  There was leggings, casual pants, t-shirts(long and short sleeved), a lady bug costume, some sweet get the general idea.  Unbelievably, it is all free and the quality is amazing.
I did have a little chat with the owner, Marcillia Bumblefoot and found that she is a new designer who loves to help people and is just a really nice lady, who is very talented.  She explained that her store is very new and that the one half is for the women, while the other half of the store, is waiting to be filled with the men's clothing that she is planning on doing in the near future.  Since she does not charge for the items in her store, she does rely on donations to help her but, that is on a voluntary basis and whatever you can afford to donate.  Since I did have alot of  fun shopping in her store, I did donate some L's, especially with the quality being so nice.
To give a little idea of the style of her clothes, I did take a few pictures to give an idea of a couple of the styles available in Bleh.
Long sleeve shirt w/leggings
Babydoll dress
As you can see, the style and quality of the textures are very good!  I highly recommend this store and look forward to seeing what she comes up with for the men's side.  Here is the limo for your trip and enjoy!

Oct 9, 2010

A Hunting We Will Go!

As I mentioned before in the previous post, I love Halloween.  Without fail or hesitancy on my part, I have already dove into the Happy Halloween season in the best manner I know how to, by doing the Halloween hunts.  The very first one that I hit was the SL Discovery hunt.  This is their second time around doing this hunt and it is very organized.  The gifts were not only wide in variety but, the quality of the store were quite nice.  To see some of the gifts that are being offered, they have set up a thread showing some of their things off.  To enter into their group inworld, you do have to contact one of the officers to request an invite but, it's worth it since this is not the only hunt they run through the year.
The next hunt that I hit was the Stalkers Hunt.  It's a short and sweet little hunt that includes 20 stores and can be done easily in a couple of hours.  A new friend of mine, Aaragon and I; went on this hunt together and had a blast running through the stores.  A little special note though about this's an adult hunt so you do have to be verified to go to some of the stores.  The hunt has a blog for hints, which can be found here.
The next hunt up is one that I am presently still working on at this time.  The Pumpkin Prints Hunt is back, for a second year in a row and there was no way I was missing this one.  I did it last year and had a fabulous time and found some amazing gifts.  Alot of the items that are being given away are clothes for Halloween, including some cute costumes.   It is a long hunt, with 191 stores participating in it but, the pumpkins are easy to find.  I did take a little time off from it though today, to take a few pictures of some of the gifts that are from the first 4 stores.
Pumpkin Print Hunt item
While hunting I did see this little kitty guarding the hunt item.  It's such a cute picture and it does show what you are looking for, I just could not resist.  Yes, I'm a sucker for a cute kitty!
First stores gift
The very first store gets you into the proper gear for hunting, with this cute Halloween t-shirt and some comfy jeans.  I was really impressed with these, since they are hand done and the texture on them is just fabulous.  I think I just found my favorite jeans and top!
Second stores gift
The second store gives you a handy purse to stuff all your goodies in, with a matching leopard print headband, collar, arm and leg wraps.  By jove, I think I'm starting to really look styling here.  That purse is adorable!
Third stores gift
With the third store, I'm no longer just styling in this number but, very hot and sexy looking.  Slap on some strappy sandals, a little necklace for glitter and I'm ready for anything in this.
Fourth Stores gift

Keeping in the Halloween mood, the fourth store was kind enough to gift us with this chair, table and crystal ball.  Looking deeply into my new crystal ball, I was able to determine that the hints for the following stores can be found here.  Wow, this thing is amazing!  I wonder if it would work for the lottery also and help give me a few really good numbers....I'll have to find that out later, since I have a hunt to finish still.
There is a large selection of hunts that are presently going on right now, from grid wide hunts to sim/store hunts.  To find a list of these hunts and more, I suggest dropping over to SL Hunts and checking them out.

Oct 5, 2010

And Let the Scaring Fun Begin!

It's that time of year again in SL, with the ghost and ghouls roaming, witches and zombies playing, and the vampires are feeling comfy coming out of their crypts.  It's Halloween this month and there is some amazing things to see and experience on the grid!  I do have to admit that I am biased, it is one of my favorite times and I do love the mood on some of the sims.  People are having a wonderful time decorating, or hunting, or dancing in the wildest costumes.  Halloween seems to transport many of us back to the days, where life was to be taken in a lighter mood and smiles were much easier to come by.  So on that note, I have a few pictures this time around that I snapped as I wandered around and enjoyed some of the decorations.

Pumpkin Town

 The first place is Pumpkin Town, where you can shop, dance and they are doing a hunt presently, for the season.  Some amazing decorations were here and I loved looking around and poking my head in the pumpkin shaped stores they had.

Haunted Coal Mine
The next stop was the Haunted Coal Mine, where you can be lowered into the ground and take a ride in the coal mine, to be surprised at different corners by a variety of ghosts and ghouls. 

Halloween @ Old Europe Village
Halloween @ Old Europe Village
Old Europe Village is not only for Halloween but, just beautifully picturesque.  You get the atmosphere of Halloween here, while you enjoy taking a nice walk through the village or going for a nice slow dance with that special someone. 

Halloween by Pondlife
What is Halloween, without Pondlife giving you a big hand in decorating and getting your place ready for all those Trick-or-Treaters that will soon be arriving?!  An amazing amount of choices and ideas can be found here, from some very colourful pumpkins, to animated spiders to walk around and startling your little monsters, all at super reasonable prices.

Adoption Agency Halloween Haunts
What is Halloween without the scary stories though?  Well, over at Adoption Agency Halloween Haunts you can sit and enjoy a story, that will be told each day.  Sponsored by CPS (Child Protective Services) and [Next Gen Inc.] Adoption Agency. All this month there will be scary story reading in the spirit of Halloween. Readings will be conducted at [Next Gen Inc.] Haunted House.

Village of Nyght
 If you are a fan of Edgar Allan Poe and/or J.P. Lovecraft, then a visit to the Village of Nyght should be a must for your Halloween fun!  Wonderfully done and spooky, it has a castle for each of these authors, for you to wander around in and explore.

Innsmouth Village
A hauntingly spooky sim, Innsmouth Village is heavily influenced by J.P. Lovecraft.  A walk through this village will definitely get you in the mood for the season and give you a few shivers to enjoy.

DarkDharma Haunted Manor
To help complete the season, you really do have to take a little stroll through DarkDharma Haunted Manor.  The fog, the strolling ghost and tons of visitors make it worth the experience.

Bentham Manor
Bentham Cemetery
Over at Bentham Manor you can stroll through this amazingly haunted sim and enjoy the sites.  Many of the decorations here can also be purchased, so if you fall in love with the psychotic Alice in Wonderland; for example, you can take her home to meet Mom and liven up your own house with her.

Sep 22, 2010

New Resident Time

Usually the population of Second Life starts to increase at this time of the year.  With the upcoming fall and then winter season, we normally see an influx of new residents arriving, due to people now staying indoors more due to the seasons.  It's at this time that you also start to see the freebie lists passed around much more.  Stores which are set up with the new residents in mind, there to help them upgrade their avatars out of the newbie stage and into a more attractive avatar.  These stores are filled with product that has been donated to them by generous creators who wish to help out a new resident.  You can pick up hair, clothes, shoes, AO's (helps you walk a little more gracefully), and a plethora of different items that you may find handy to have in your exploration and time in SL.
Before I go too far with this and start the list that I have collected of freebie stores, I will give one warning, garnered through experience.  There is no limit to an avatars inventory, which can be both a blessing and a very bad thing.  When you first start out in SL, going through the freebie stores can not only be alot of fun but, addictive and a disaster on ones inventory.  If you go out freebie shopping and just splurge, as a friend of mine and myself did in our first days of SL, you will realize before long that you should attempt to keep your inventory somewhat organized as you splurge and binge on freebies.  We went nutz for the first week and to this day, I still occasionally find a little gem from those days, lingering around in my inventory in the darnedest places.  It took us forever to clean up that mess we created in our inventories so I can only say...organize, organize and deletion of things you will not need is advisable.
Now onto the list that I have.  With this list, I have it sort of organized..yes there is that word again.  The first part of the list is for upgrading, beautifying and the pleasure of your avatar.  The second part is for those who wish to try their hand at being creative in SL.  It's places I have found that are for the future builders and creators.
 .::Freebie Island::.
Freebie Market
Freebies @ The Rock
The Yard at Honie Island
Freebies Gratuit Shop
Freebie Dungeon
Help Island Public 
Freebie World
Gnubie Store 

Builder's Brewery  Classes and material are available here
oe0's Warehouse   Free items but you have to look for it
Build Better at Happy Hippo   free and low priced building supplies
Phoenix free Scripts  just touch the boxes to receive the contents in them
Freebie for Builders  mostly free with a few items at $1L
Sound shop  $0L - $50L sounds, textures, etc.
SL Free Script Library  
As I go around, I collect more as I wander but, these are some of the best ones that I have seen so far.  There is also groups that you can locate through searching for them, thru the group tab in Search.  Fabulously Free in SL, which I am a member in, is where residents call out specials and freebies through the group chat as they find them. Wonderfully friendly and warm group of individuals who are not only helpful but, terrific to chat with.  They also have their own website, which you can browse through for items and news on what is going on.  They are located here.
There is so much that goes on when you are new in Second life, that it's almost impossible to cover it all but, I think in the next few posts to follow, I will be adding more regarding life as a new resident.

Sep 20, 2010

Hunts! Hunts! And yes, More Hunts!

The one thing that I love to do more than anything in SL is to hunt.  It's a wonderful pastime where you will find some of the nicest and most friendly people.  What it entails is either a sim hunt(one sim involved) or a grid hunt(several sims involved) and you are searching for a specific item that is hidden.  When you locate the item, you buy it for either $0L or you touch it and a script instructs the item to give you a gift.  In a grid hunt, you will get the gift and also a landmark, to where the next gift can be found.
Hunts are a great manner in which to get familiarized with second life and get some really nice things when you are new to that world.  I've recommended them to new residents frequently, as a cheap method to obtain things to upgrade their avatars.
When I first came to second life, I was introduced to hunts by a few friends I had made.  At that time, hunts were not as heavily around, as they are now, so we usually spent some time, just looking for a hunt to enjoy.  Now though, hunts are a very popular and well known past time to many.  To find ongoing hunts takes very little time and in fact you can locate several groups easily through group search that are dedicated to hunting. The ones that I am involved in is the Happy Hunters, Huntaholics and More, Hunters Group, Hunt Addiction and Hy Hunters.
The Huntaholics and More group is actually the group where each month, thanks to members of the group, you can receive a list of upcoming hunts for the next month. (thank you Gavyn, Bestat and all who help feed our addiction!)  It takes alot of work and dedication and each month these intrepid searchers locate as many hunts as they can find for the hunt list.
Not only is there groups dedicated to this fun past time but, blogs and sites are also set up for these hunts.
SL Discovery
SL Hunts Calendar
The Hunt Locations
SL Hunts
These are just my personal favorites and I know that there are many more out there but, there seem to be the ones that let me know what I need to help feed my addiction...I mean my hobby. ;P
Well, I know that there is several hunts going right now, so I'm off in search of wonders, gifts and oh yes, new things to see! 

Aug 23, 2010

Time for the Men

Too often I have heard men mention in dismay that they are under represented in Second Life, for choices from clothing, hair, skin and accessories.  Well, today I went around collecting some urls for some of the men's stores that I did know about.  It's not a bad collection but, I know that there are many more with amazing designers that are out there.  Sadly, I have not discovered them..yet.  In time though, with the way I wander I will probably find more and I'll add them when I do. 

Mags Menswear Main store  simple basics, tees, jeans, prices not too bad
sLADE Men - A Place for Men  stylish, nicely done, mid-range in pricing
ISPACHI Mens Skins Shapes Eyes Fashion  Up to date, very nice, pricing reasonable, has everything for a  great makeover
M&M Men's and Women's Clothing  whole outfits at very great prices.  Sharp looking and hot!
Chinese Takeout  Very preppy style of clothing at fair prices, very nice quality
Klam Designs Main Store  Hot, Hot and very reasonably priced for the outfits, as are the skins and hair.
Boystown  relaxed style of clothing in the mid price range
King For Men  a good mix of styles from preppy to laid back with price tags that are fair.
RZR Clothing and Animations  Grunge/Neko look with decent prices
 /Wasabi Pills/Thibedeau/  some really great hair for males, especially for rping in for decent prices
Quidem  Casual and urban clothes for men at nice prices 
ROCX  grunge/Neko/urban at good pricing
[hoorenbeck]  a wide variety of men's shoes at various price ranges
Alphamale & Blacklace  suits, dressy casual, casual, variety of prices but, high in quality 
Bryce Designs Main Store  Hair store with a wide variety of styles and prices
T&A Designs  Neko/Urban punk/Goth Men's clothes on 3rd floor
V-TWINS Biker outfits  Biker clothes and Fashion with prices that vary
sf design Menswear  casual, business, suits, a very wide variety
sf design-High Society  tuxedos and formal wear
~MadeForYou~  casual, urban, grunge, neko
MADdesigns  shapes, hair, eyes, poses and male fashion.  Can be a little higher in prices but the quality make it worth it.
Maverick Designs  shapes.  Join their group for great freebies for members.
Signature Skins  it's exclusively male skins.  Higher in price but, the quality is just amazing.
~Hype~   some really great hair varieties, including a few really nice long styles 
Lapointe & Bastchild   Amazing quality but, with a heavy price tag for some items.  They do now however have a free area where previous styles have been placed with a wide variety of items to dress with.
MCP Designs   A really nice mens' store that has some great prices for clothing, eyes and skins.  The skins here that I seen are about 200L and very nicely done.
RFyre Gothic Couture Clothing   A variety of prices are available at this store but, the quality is really amazing.  You can pick up goth, rp costumes or just period pieces.

That is about it for the moment, though as I was putting these in here, I do recall a few other stores that I don't have in this list.  When I get a chance, I'll pop those ones in here also, including more for the gothic crowd as well.

Aug 22, 2010

Pondering the first days.

Since January 1st 2009, I have been wandering around and exploring all the wonderful things that Second Life could offer.  In that time, from the days of stumbling around as a newbie av to being able to finally move things without accidentally sending them to a distant sim, I have learned many things.  The first thing was that Second Life has a steep learning curve.  There is such an incredible amount of information in the beginning when you first log on, it can be both mind boggling and intimidating.  I still thank goodness for those wonderful volunteers and kind hearted individuals who have the patience of a saint, in dealing with the new residents that come in.  I was not alone in those days though, there were other newbies with me and they made those first days not only an adventure in learning but, some of my most hilarious memories are from then.  From poseball hoping to see what each one did, with my friend Andi to Leric getting his first job as a dancer in the Majestic, wearing mesh underwear.  To this day, Andi and I still laugh over the meshies.
My curiosity of SL was huge in those days and I was quick to try anything at least once, including a time of being in the game, Bloodlines.  Through that, I learned that clans equal drama, no matter which one you were in but, the friendships that you forge through them, stay strongly with you.
I also found a passion of just wandering around and looking at all the different things and sims that the other residents create in there.  There is such amazing creativity in there, that it still makes me sit and look in wonder on what people can do, given the right tools.
I guess the reason I've created this blog is to sort of write down my wanderings, maybe introduce something to someone else who may be interested and keep a running tab of where I have been.