Second Life Twitter Typewriter
May 1, 2008 9:36 PM   Subscribe

Giant Twittering Typewriter in Second Life. Type here (SLURL) and press the carriage return and it posts to here. Yay.

[via]
posted by brownpau (42 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

 
butts lol

9 minutes ago from web

posted by blacklite at 9:46 PM on May 1, 2008


One guess who's awake.
posted by middleclasstool at 9:48 PM on May 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


It's the singularity of stupid.
posted by basicchannel at 9:50 PM on May 1, 2008 [2 favorites]


This changes everything.
posted by brain_drain at 9:51 PM on May 1, 2008


Virtual Reality - realising the promise of less convenient, more 3D interfaces for things you could have done quicker in 2D.
posted by Artw at 9:54 PM on May 1, 2008 [5 favorites]


Thats a very cool mash up

This IS a great mashup.

Godfuckingdammit, one thing interfacing with another thing is not a mashup. Fuck that word and everyone who uses it and thinks they're privvy to some kind of insight the rest of us don't have about the digital world.
posted by Mikey-San at 9:56 PM on May 1, 2008 [9 favorites]


that felt great
posted by Mikey-San at 9:57 PM on May 1, 2008 [2 favorites]


Godfuckingdammit, one thing interfacing with another thing is not a mashup. Fuck that word and everyone who uses it and thinks they're privvy to some kind of insight the rest of us don't have about the digital world.

^ I just mashed up your comment!
posted by Artw at 9:58 PM on May 1, 2008


Is web 2.0 in Second life actually web 4.0? I was never very good at math.
posted by Someone has just shot your horse! at 10:03 PM on May 1, 2008


It's things like these that make me nostalgic for the pre-web 2.0 era. I don't care if I have to connect with a wheezy 56.K modem and disconnect because someone is expecting a call. That made it more of an adventure.
posted by hellojed at 10:20 PM on May 1, 2008


All the things I hate are mating.
posted by kid ichorous at 10:23 PM on May 1, 2008 [11 favorites]


People who earnestly get excited about something like this really out to have their kneecaps shot out.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:24 PM on May 1, 2008


Oh. Wow. I have no virtual mouth yet I must scream.

So Second Life manages to create a virtual manual typewriter in cyberspace.

Why not an abacus, while you're at it? Or some stone and a chisel to pound out latin numerals?

Second Life ceased to have any relevance to me the second I realized I can't log into it as me. I had to use some weird name (which I've since forgotten) based on an arbitrary list. My virtual name is ZachsMind. I try to go by that nomenclature wherever I go now on the Web. Works well for me everywhere except there. Screw Second Life.

That was just the first of a long boring list of What The Fucks that I experienced in my brief time with that sordid and cumbersome craphole of a software program. The virtual money. The frustrating graphics. The compatibility problems with my computer. The memory hog that it was. The really dorky virtual radio station they had playing in it. The cumbersome movement interface with the keyboard and mouse. On and on and on. What utter rubbish.

It's still out there? Really? People still use Second Life? I guess some people must bash their brains in for recreation as well. Never understood that one either.

The fact it still exists at all is a mild surprise to me. ActiveWorlds did it much better over a decade ago, but it didn't catch on then, and I tire of people trying to convince me that Second Life is going to catch on. It's not. The people who are in it and think it's catching on? It's not. For every one person who actually thinks Second Life deserves to exist, there's ten who know better, one hundred who don't care, and a thousand people happily oblivious to its very presence in the universe. I wish I was one of those.

The fact that the new and improved Doctor Who is on its fourth season over at BBC Wales has more validity to reality than the fact Second Life has a virtual manual typewriter.

I wish I didn't even know Second Life exists. I'd like to take a pill that erased that knowledge from my brain and left everything else intact.

...

Yes. I do feel much better now. Had to get that off my chest. Thanks.
posted by ZachsMind at 10:29 PM on May 1, 2008 [3 favorites]


People still use Second Life?

Serveral hundred overcredulous tech journalists, Warren Ellis, assorted furries, trannies, and S&M enthusiasts and him off of Boing Boing.
posted by Artw at 10:41 PM on May 1, 2008


Eminently useful.
posted by cytherea at 10:45 PM on May 1, 2008


The only fond memory I have of Second Life is wandering around aimlessly and coming across a simple harp object nestled in the corner of a room which was playing music by Gypsy Soul. That put a smile on my face. Everything else was bollocks.
posted by ZachsMind at 10:48 PM on May 1, 2008


To "teleport now" I have to down load a program?
posted by PHINC at 10:49 PM on May 1, 2008


...but then again... I hate MySpace too, and I've been proven wrong on that one. Never thought that one would ever catch on.
posted by ZachsMind at 10:50 PM on May 1, 2008


i will admit that some
of the insects do not lead
noble lives but is every
man s hand to be against them
yours for less justice
and more charity

archy
posted by lekvar at 11:19 PM on May 1, 2008 [4 favorites]


The steampunk of 100 years from now will be, well, this.

Oh, wait 100 years from now will be environmental destruction, where people will fight to the death over 3 oz of gas.

But that 3 oz will last an entire lifetime, because our decedents will be FUCKING AWESOME!
posted by dirigibleman at 11:21 PM on May 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


I don't know what twitter is.
posted by dirigibleman at 11:22 PM on May 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


Folks, Second Life is just a 3D lego set. The stuff you can make with it isn't as good as the stuff you can make with more sophisticated tools, but like real legos, occasionally you'll see someone do something exceptionally cool. There's no particular goal, and no particular 'right' way to play with it.

If you don't like the things you happen to have run into, then make your own things that are better.

For those of you who like to sneer so very, very much... it's a fucking sandbox. Of course a lot of the shit sucks; most people don't know what they're doing.

If you want to see the neat stuff in SL, ask some random denizen to point you to the best content creator they know. Contact that person, and ask them the same question. If you follow the chain eight or ten links, you should be finding some pretty sophisticated, interesting stuff.

Fundamentally, it's just a toy. It's very, very much like a MOO, but with 3d graphics instead. If you weren't derisive about MOOs and MUSHes, you shouldn't really bash on the modern equivalents, Sl and World of Warcraft.

The fact that you can insult AOL usersSL users does not make you cooler, or part of the 'in' crowd. It just makes you an asshole.
posted by Malor at 12:08 AM on May 2, 2008 [3 favorites]


All the things I hate are mating.

Quick, get the spray!
posted by The Light Fantastic at 12:12 AM on May 2, 2008


Malor. I don't diss Second Life cuz I think it makes me cool.

I never wanted to be cool.

Choke me in the shallow before I get too deep.

I'm very okay with being an asshole. Always have been.

MOOs and MUSHes were VERY cool, and for some they still ARE.

If Second Life wants to be a 3D MOO? They got a long way to go, and like I said, ActiveWorlds did it better with Renderware over a decade before but got zero props for it.

I call Second Life crap for the same reason I say space is big: cuz it is.

"SL" sucks so much it doesn't even deserve to be referred to by an acronym.
posted by ZachsMind at 12:18 AM on May 2, 2008


Serveral hundred overcredulous tech journalists, Warren Ellis, assorted furries, trannies, and S&M enthusiasts and him off of Boing Boing.

Don't forget the Something Awful/4Chan greifers who attacked that one Asian chick who made a bunch of money cyberseXX0ring lonely nerds or whatever she did with a torrent of pink virtual 3D dildos. The screenshots from that alone justify the existence of Second Life.

Also, Suzanne Vega did a "virtual concert" on it once. I think she was just under the mistaken impression that anyone but weird shut-in perverts use Second Life, though. She was not, however, showered with dildos. Which is good, because I like Suzanne Vega.
posted by DecemberBoy at 12:39 AM on May 2, 2008 [1 favorite]


NEEDS MORE VRML
posted by davemee at 12:40 AM on May 2, 2008 [1 favorite]


Folks, Second Life is just a 3D lego set.

Legos are a 3D Lego set too, and the difference between Legos and Second Life is that I played Legos with my little brothers, and as far as I've been told my little brothers are not diaperfurrs, Goreans, or looking to get rich quick by raking in video game money.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 12:53 AM on May 2, 2008 [1 favorite]


How come stuff from second life never hops into real life? This feels like a one way relationship.
posted by LostZombies at 12:57 AM on May 2, 2008


Legos are a 3D Lego set too, and the difference between Legos and Second Life is that I played Legos with my little brothers, and as far as I've been told my little brothers are not diaperfurrs, Goreans, or looking to get rich quick by raking in video game money.

Your brothers aren't -- as far as you know -- but I absolutely guarantee you that real, actual people who have played with Legos are into everything you mention.

It's like you're saying that all Montanans are weird assholes because of the Freemen and the Unabomber. And it's interesting how you even paint a simple profit motive in the most unflattering of all possible terms. There are people who make pretty solid money out of Second Life; I know some of them myself, and they're just like any other businesspeople you'd be likely to meet. But your phrasing is incredibly loaded and insulting.

Your very clear subtext is, "I'm better than those freaks who use that system". It's puerile and stupid. Perhaps foolishly, I expect better of MeFites.

I don't use SL much anymore, but get together on many Friday evenings with a number of those friends I referred to. We listen to music and chat. We've been doing it for years now. There are no diapers or con-jobbers present. There's often one guy with a rabbit avatar, but he's been around since before furries were even CALLED that. The furry crowd seems very sex-based, and he's just a rabbit with a suit and a top hat. You may hate the idea of anyone with an animal avatar, but I'm sure he wouldn't particularly care about your opinion.

On the whole, I'd consider that crowd, and many scattered others that I've run into, to be far more wholesome and mainstream than the vast majority of IRC channels. And yes, I've peripherally seen the Goreans and the furries, but you have to go looking for them. There's been an adult side of SL since almost the very start, and I've rarely felt that it was intruding into my part of the system much.

As far as technical problems go: blast it on that front. It has never been that stable or worked that well. It's sort of the Windows 95 of MMO games... in a constant state of breakage. That's pretty much what drove me away from it. I don't like unstable systems. I like software I can trust. If you want to say it sucks on that level, you'll get precisely zero argument from me, and probably lengthy agreement.

But blasting everyone on the system because some people do things you don't like there? God damn that's stupid. It's the online equivalent of racism.

How come stuff from second life never hops into real life? This feels like a one way relationship.

Well, the system's scripting language is very weak and limited, so it's hard to translate design ideas back and forth. You can get very complex behaviors by chaining together enough simple scripts, but that kind of work doesn't translate in any way to outside languages. You're starting over from scratch if you want to port from SL to anything else.

I do, however, know of at least one game idea that made it out... Tringo was a ridiculously popular SL game at one time, to the point of crowding everything else out. It's still regularly played, and I believe it was ported to cellphones. The original developer apparently got a pretty good-sized check for the design, too.

But, mostly, making things work in a reasonable way in SL requires heroic, non-translatable effort, so you just don't see a lot of crossover or breakout into the mainstream.

This typewriter, for instance, is a clever hack. It's more difficult than it needs to be; they could have let you just drop a notecard into the dumb thing and have it 'type' for you. The display method appears to be particularly clever; it looks like it's being rendered on a server somewhere, and then displayed as a texture on the paper prim's face. I think. It's hard to tell from the limited information in the article.

Single-prim display of arbitrary text is a pretty cool feature. Normally, you'd need one prim per letter, or at least per letter pair if you used an extended texture with all the possible pairs. For an 80x24 screen, that's 1920 single-letter prims, or 960 with the double-letter trick. That's a giant build. You can do huge, intricate objects with that many prims. It would cost about $25/mo to own enough land to support just ONE "virtual screen". So, being able to display arbitrary, changing text using only one prim is pretty cool. It puts it within reach of anyone using the system, rather than just people with large parcels.
posted by Malor at 2:14 AM on May 2, 2008 [4 favorites]


Metafilter, a fucking sandbox.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 3:22 AM on May 2, 2008


Metafilter, a fucking sandbox.

Better than Metafilter, a sandy fuckbox, that's for sure.
posted by maxwelton at 4:07 AM on May 2, 2008


Better than Metafilter, a sandy fuckbox, that's for sure.

That would explain the centipedes.
posted by b1tr0t at 6:17 AM on May 2, 2008


I just "hacked" your "mashup". What are you going to do "about" it?
posted by blue_beetle at 6:39 AM on May 2, 2008


LostZombies: you asked for it, you got it.
posted by adamrice at 7:10 AM on May 2, 2008


Malor, thanks for taking the time to explain what's neat about this. I know it's trendy to bash Second Life, but I for one feel a little wistful about it. It seemed like it would have been such a cool thing, had the technical problems not gotten in the way for so many people.
posted by IcyJuly at 11:32 AM on May 2, 2008


That's a pretty good summation, Icy. And it DID attract a pretty large population of weirdos. But the original crew there was bright, interesting, and very creative, and when you can find the ones that weren't driven off by the technical ineptitude of Linden Labs, you're almost guaranteed a good conversation.

The first year or two were tremendous fun, as smart people played with the systems and learned how to do neat things with them. We had biplane dogfights and caption contests and sumo wrestling. There was a pretty good re-creation of the Discs of Tron game. There were roller coasters and themed rides (Spook House was an early fun one), and zoos and parks. But they grew too fast, and the original culture of creativity was drowned out in mediocrity and assholishness, and then the constant, constant breakage drove off many of the best and brightest.

It's nothing like it was, but you can still find some really interesting stuff, and in no way does the place deserve the constant Metafilter hate it gets. Blast it for the technical failings, not for the fact that there are groups you don't like that use it. They won't bother you if you don't bother them.
posted by Malor at 5:20 PM on May 2, 2008 [2 favorites]


*pokes her head around the thread. shrugs.*
posted by typewriter at 8:17 PM on May 2, 2008


"Blast it for the technical failings, not for the fact that there are groups you don't like that use it. They won't bother you if you don't bother them."

Uhm... I just DID blast it for its technical failings. Other people diss it for having furries or whatever. I don't care about that. I got my own perversions and idiosyncrasies. Everybody does, but I don't like being lumped in with people who diss the people who populate Second Life. I got no beef with them, and nothing I said earlier in this thread should suggest that.

Those who diss any virtual hangout due to the company it keeps needs to look in the mirror. Second Life sucks in spite of the wonderfully creative people it has in the past attracted, not because of them.
posted by ZachsMind at 7:31 AM on May 3, 2008


Oh. And for the record. I'm not a furry. Not that there's anything wrong with that. I may still be homophobic (recovering), but I'm not furryphobic. I just don't have one of those weird furry outfits but I'm sure they're very nice, and I think climbing inside one of them might make me feel claustrophobic. And sweaty. And sticky. Again, not that there's anything wrong with that. To each his own and all that. Oh my gawd I AM furryphobic aren't I? Dammit!
posted by ZachsMind at 7:35 AM on May 3, 2008


Zachsmind, if you couldn't tell, my last diatribe was in response to TheOnlyCoolTim's assertion of, well, being cool and ever so much better than the freaks in SL.

I'd disagree with you only slightly: if the system worked as designed, it'd still be quite interesting and fun to play with. But it's virtually impossible to log in and find every feature operational at any given time. On my Friday night visit, it took me about five tries to log in, and then I was unable to send instant messages to my friends because the system simply wouldn't allow it. Then teleport was broken, so I couldn't join them either. I ended up having to manually fly to the place we gather. At that point things were fine, but geeze -- logging in, instant messages, and teleports are some of the most central features of the system, and they were all broken at the same time. And this is the normal state of things these days; that wasn't at all exceptional.

Their sheer level of technical ineptitude amazes me. I was willing to give them the benefit of the doubt, once upon a time, because of the insane growth rate... but it's been like this, getting steadily worse, for three years now. I don't think it's ever going to work right, because they're not willing to buckle down and actually make it happen. Instead, they just slap bandaid after bandaid after bandaid on a fundamentally broken system. The bandaids are not holding it together anymore.
posted by Malor at 10:23 AM on May 3, 2008


TheOnlyCoolTim's assertion of, well, being cool and ever so much better than the freaks in SL.

Am I better than a diaper fur? A better person? I'd say in general, not necessarily, although we could talk at length about value judgments based on delusion and how delusional individual subcultures are, e.g. otherkin.

Am I cooler than a diaper fur, at least in this singular aspect, and don't want to hang around with people united by such an uncool interest? Hells yeah.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 1:16 PM on May 3, 2008


Well, Tim, I'm not particularly recommending that you do this, because of the aforementioned technical problems, but you can use SL without even seeing those people. It's a big place.
posted by Malor at 5:40 AM on May 4, 2008


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