New Computer but not out of the woods yet

As people may have noticed from my Twitter feed, I now have a . However, this system was purchased with a loan from a private investor that I do have to pay back, so although I’m not in dire need of funds, I’ll be leaving the donation button in the sidebar till I am solvent.

Now that I have a working system, I’ll be able to get things moving along with SL5B :-)

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inSL document oddness

  1. Your use of the inSL logo must be in strict compliance with the Guidelines for Using the inSL Logo,

    The inSL signup form requires you indicate that you have read and agreed to the terms and conditions, as well as stating that you have read and agree to the guidelines. However, as point 3 of the t&c says that the use of the logo must follow these guidelines, making the extra check box seem slightly redundant.

  2. upon Linden Lab’s request, you shall supply Linden Lab, at no cost and with no obligation to return, suitable specimens of your use of the inSL logo to verify your compliance with this License.

    No example of such a specimen is provided, though one can assume this might something as simple as a video/screenshot (for digital uses), photo or scan (for physical uses). However, if the use is on a website, I’m wondering if a simple link to the website or in-world location (which is requested in the signup form) would suffice- I mean it’s better to see implementations live than it is to see something that could be photoshopped.

  3. This License is valid for one (1) year from the effective date of execution unless earlier terminated as provided in this License.

    The previous point regarding the review process allows Linden Lab to revoke the license at any time (given good reason), so I’m guessing the 1-year period is because this is a new thing. Glad there are no license fees though (yet).

  4. Display the inSL logo only on communications or items that relate to the Second Life world. Never use the inSL logo to indicate your connection to another virtual world.

    One can assume that this means that the inSL logo can’t be used to say OH HAI! I R IN TEH OPEN SIM, only Linden Lab’s implementation of Second Life.

  5. Do not make any changes to the logo artwork except proportional resizing.

    Sure, as long as I can has SVG.

  6. Do not animate, morph, or otherwise distort the logo in proportion or appearance.

    redundant fun. If you can only rescale the image (e.g. retain the same aspect ratio), then you cannot distort the logo in proportion

  7. Use the color inSL logo only on a solid white background.

    Use a minimum clear space (or space with nothing but the background) of at least one-quarter (1/4) the height of the inSL logo around the entire logo.

    If Linden Lab wants to be that picky about how the logo is used, include the white background and margin in the logo itself.

Posted in Second Life | Tagged | 2 Comments

Marv's new computer fund

Like a lot of people, I feel a bit odd about asking for charity. But there comes a time in a geek’s life when he has to swallow his pride and ask for help.

Continue reading

Posted in How Marv would fix Second Life | 1 Comment

blog-fu solution to alert request feature and semantic world.secondlife.com replacement

The past several weeks I’ve been unable to get in-world, so I’ve been making little if no progress on the alert request service. I have however been able to work on the semantic world.secondlife.com replacement. One of the topics that came up in my rants, conversations & internal dialogue was how the notes feature is similar to the feature request that the alert request service be able to leave notes on Residents and the requests they’d triggered.

At one of Everett Linden’s recent Office Hours, I’d ranted about how useless the current implementation of Linden Lab’s “notes” feature was. One of the reason why it (along with the rest of the in-world data) is useless is that you can only view or edit the information from inside the viewer.

While the alert request service is pretty much an internal thing- in the sense that you can only use it from within the website- call has been made to allow people to respond to calls directly through the viewer (and not via uBrowser). So it would be nice to not force users of the service to interact with it in a single way.

So here’s what I’m thinking. Why not use existing blogging interfaces to allow Residents to remotely create and modify their notes and picks ? To do this, I’ll be attempting to implement an XML-RPC interface- similar to those used by all the well known blogging platforms. What this means is that instead of being forced to log onto the site to leave a note or creating a custom API for LSL scripts to talk to, I’ll be offering an established API so people can use their existing remote blogging tools to access and modify the information.

Unfortunately for the SL picks, this’ll be a little tricky. Linden Lab doesn’t provide any unique identifiers for picks, so forking existing picks data onto the blog-esque system may prove troublesome. Another thing is that since I don’t use libSL and I don’t ask for your Second Life passwords, you won’t be able to edit existing picks or access existing notes from inside the viewer. However, if the experiment is a success, it may prompt Linden Lab to stop partying like it’s 1999 and open up the data to the outside world. Or hire me to do fix it :-P (one can only dream)

Posted in How Marv would fix Second Life, Marvulous | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

WordPress Podcast bed music

Charles Stricklin

Episode 2, regarding the choice of jazz music

Next comes the choice in music. Some people loved it, most people hated it. While I may find a more up tempo song, it’ll definitely be a jazz piece, and not some techno song. One reason is because everyone uses techno for their bed music, and I’d like our podcast to be unique. Another reason is the connection between WordPress and jazz music. Matt Mullenweg is a jazz music aficionado, and he times the major releases of WordPress to coincide with the birthdays of legendary jazz musicians, adopting their names as the code names for that particular release. So you see it’s only fitting that our WordPress podcast has a jazz feel to it.

Episode 33, regarding the choice of rock music

By going to the show builder lite, I had to redo the intro and the exit where it fades down to zero before I start my thing. So I figured since I was already going to be redoing it, recutting it, I might was well change the music, and I’ve changed it to a kind of a rock music that fits with another of my podcasts that I do- podcast planning found at podcast planning.com which is also terribly, terribly out of date but I hope to be picking it up soon- and anyway, I’m hoping to brand myself with that music, so you’ll notice that change.

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SL4B email now closed

Now that we’re starting to increase our efforts regarding SL5B, the old email address published in various sources as a means of contacting me regarding SL4B is now closed, so if you need to contact me regarding SL4B you’ll have to use other channels of communication.

Posted in Second Life\'s Birthday | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Postponing updates to generated images

Over the weekend I discovered that the Linden Lab webmap API is giving out rather odd results- it’s showing the same region existing in a couple hundred different places at once, which is of course a technical impossibility.

Because of this, the Linden Lab webmap API can be considered unreliable and unfortunately since I’m using the LL webmap API as a data source, this means my results could be considered contaminated (as is anyone else’s data that uses the LL webmap API).

I let Yoz Linden know about it during Tuesday’s meeting, and I’ve also filed a bug (WEB-473) in the public SL JIRA.

Posted in How Marv would fix Second Life, SL Map API | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Following the progress of the exhaustive search

To give people a better idea of how long the exhaustive grid search query takes, I’ve set up a twitter feed for MN:SL and added the feed as an RSS Widget on this blog.

I’m hoping this will illustrate why Linden Lab need to beef up their WebMap API (or hire me to fix it :-P)

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PHP5 Certification – practice exam progress

Since the grid search query is going to take a while to complete and most of my projects are either being held up by the query or something else (if there’s a project I’ve forgotten about, please remind me!), I thought I’d use up one of my PHP5 Certification practice exam credits.

The Results

Things I failed

  • Database Access
  • Arrays
  • PHP4/5 Differences

Things I passed

  • String manipulation and regular expressions
  • Functions
  • Security
  • OOP
  • Streams and Network Programming

Thing I got an “Excellent” rating on

  • Design
  • Basic Language
  • XML & Web Services
  • Web Features

Conclusion

The overall result was a Pass, but there were some things that surprised me:

  • Failing Arrays- how do I fail one of the most basic concepts in PHP ? Looks like I’ll have to brush up on that.
  • Passing Streams and Network programming- I don’t generally work with streams & sockets- although I have thought about glueing libSL to PHP via a secondlife:// stream :-)
  • Excelling in Design- WTF?- knowing the theory of design concepts is probably why I excelled in design, but it’s not something I would’ve predicted

The two things I would like to improve upon are the Database & Streams areas of PHP5- if anyone can recommend a good book or two that focus on the subject, I’d be grateful; One could argue I should focus on the differences between PHP4 and PHP5, but since PHP4 is nearing the end of it’s life cycle, I’d prefer to focus on current elements of PHP- leaving the differences between PHP4 & PHP5 to when I work on PHP4-based applications (WordPress/Mu/bbPress etc).

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Improving the MN:SL Map API

Over the new year, I exhaustively searched the grid within the confines of the size of the grid as my database was aware (e.g. the query didn’t check outside the minimum and maximum boundaries). Afterwards, I generated and posted several images of the Agni grid.

In an effort to improve the data provided by my version of Linden Lab’s Webmap API, I’ve expanded the area of the search to cover what is probably a more complete area- which comes up to just over 26.5 million acres. This more expansive query should give me an idea of how often I should be running other queries- for example, if it takes a week to finish an exhaustive search, then exhaustive searches and minor queries (getting region parcels, compositing map images) would alternate on a weekly basis.

Posted in How Marv would fix Second Life, SL Map API | 2 Comments