Entering Sansar

As you’ve probably heard by now, Sansar has opened its beta doors.  I’m not sure whether Sansar is something I’ll stick with, but I wanted to at least try it out (and snag my avatar name before anyone else did!).

I watched several of Strawberry Singh’s Sansar videos, which were really helpful, because there isn’t a lot of information on how Sansar works (that I found, at least).

First you have to set up a Sansar account (click for the link, because I had to search around for it – you’re welcome 😛 ).  Once you set up your account and verify your email, the next step is to download the Sansar client.

The specs seem pretty stiff to me, so if you have an older computer, you may find it takes a while for things to load.  I have a decent graphics card, and it still took a few minutes for some of the experiences to load.

I will say, the graphics are fantastic.  I snapped a couple of pics, but there doesn’t seem to be any way to take a hi-res photo in Sansar as you can in SL.

god rays in sansar

The avatars leave a lot to be desired compared to what is available in SL. I’m sure Sansar will catch up as creators join. There are some customization options, but they are currently fairly limited.

For now, I’ve set up my account and I will probably log in now and again to see what new improvements they make.  In the meantime, SL will be getting most of my game time, and what free time I have left over will be spent trying (once again) to learn Blender.  My new 3D printer needs something to do, right? 😀

Project Bento: avatar skeleton enhancements for Second Life | Inara Pey: Living in a Modem World

Image Source:  amazingbody.weebly.com
Image Source: amazingbody.weebly.com

I am so super-excited about this news that I am up early just to blog on it!

Yesterday LL announced the new Project Bento – about enhancements for your avatar skeleton.

When I first heard the news, my mind was literally racing with what this could mean and how it would change things in SL.

It may seem like a small change, but it isn’t.  And after reading more from designers and creators, I can’t wait to see what changes come in the next few months.

Project Bento is still currently on the beta grid, but creators are already hard at work.

Many of the additional bones that are being added will not have much affect for human avatars – the tail bones, bones for extra limbs, etc.

However, Project Bento adds bones for ALL 10 FINGERS!  This means that your fingers can move individually!

As I think about what that could mean for animations – dances, poses, AO’s – I am excited. 🙂

Siddean Munro, creator of Slink, has stated on Plurk that she will be reworking/updating her mesh hands to reflect the additional bones.

Dancers – imagine being able to change your hand position during a dance (without having to change mesh hands perhaps?).  Bloggers – imagine being able to move that pesky hidden pinky out of your skirt or pants without having to move your entire hand.

You could create non-human avatars that are more realistic.  Talk on Plurk has mentioned things like centaurs, spiders, or even an octopus – with tentacles that would actually move.

Adding the new bones for facial expressions will be huge, I would think, for people who role-play, act, or make machinima.  Imagine being able to look shocked, or sad, in a much more natural way than is possible currently.

I had also hoped that the new facial bones would mean that mesh heads would be able to respond to facial sliders, allowing for more individuality than is currently possible.

After reading comments from creators, however, it appears that that isn’t one of the things that will happen.  Disappointment about that aside, I can’t wait to see what amazing things will come of this new enhancement.

As I’m not particularly techie, I’m a bit confused about how the new bones will affect mesh heads.  I think that it will allow for more facial expressions via the bones (rather than the head creators having to create the expressions themselves), but that the sliders (in the avatar appearance window) will have little to no effect on the shape of the heads.

Of course, I could have misunderstood all the tech speak, so if you understand it and can clear up my confusion, please leave me a comment!

If you’d like to try this all out for yourself, read Inara’s post for details about how to do that.  Be sure to watch the short video, it’s pretty cool. 😀

Source: Project Bento: avatar skeleton enhancements for Second Life | Inara Pey: Living in a Modem World

Streaming SL?

Image Source:  community.secondlife.com
Image Source: community.secondlife.com

I try to keep up with some of the technical happenings involving SL.

I stumbled across SL Go because I was frustrated at the limitations of my computer system.

I have since upgraded my system, so I wasn’t using SL Go as much.

However, I was still disappointed to learn that the service was being discontinued as of April 30.

In fact, I was in the middle of an experiment using my computer versus SL Go and comparing FPS and performance.

I went to a couple of dance shows and experienced some quite heavy lag, which was unusual.

So hubs hopped on SL Go and we were off.

Sadly, before I could finish up the experiment and publish the results, SL Go was axed.

With its demise, the experiment was pointless.


While I didn’t use SL Go as much as I thought I would, my husband enjoyed it very much.

His preference was to use it on his iPad, but much of the appeal of the service was that people who couldn’t afford high-end computer systems could use SL.

Those same people were really disappointed to see it go (no pun intended 😛 ), and the end of the service leaves a definite hole.

There has been speculation whether another company could replicate the service.

It seems that a new service might actually be possible.

There was an article about using Frame to stream SL and a company called Bright Canopy has started a beta to see if/how it works.

The beta is now closed, but you can go here and sign up for their invitation-only pre-launch.

I have no idea how this all works (being a non-technical person), but it looks fascinating.

If you are a technical person, or you just want more details, Inara Pey has a blog post all about it.

I’m optimistic that another service like SL Go may actually happen.

I personally am not a fan of ‘mobile’ use of SL, I love my keyboard, mouse, and my big monitor waaay too much. 😛

However, for people who can’t afford a high-end computer system, a streaming service like SL Go enabled many to experience SL, even on older hardware.

I’m all for that – the more, the merrier when it comes to SL!