Tuesday, 30 January 2007

AL's little list

Just a quick one tonight. Al has kindly agreed to do a few orbits of SL and jot down some new islands. Here's a little list of some new places in development:
Minnesota State Colleges & Universities

  • The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Texas State Technical Colleges
  • Portland State UNi (Course CS199)
  • University of Texas at Dallas, School of Management
  • RMIT Melbourne
  • BNP PARIBAS bank
  • Comcast News
  • SquareOne Research
  • AMD developer central
  • Next (??)
  • ICEX - Spanish Institute of Foreign Trade
  • US Holocaust Museum

Monday, 29 January 2007

Al gets media-friendly

Universal McCann have an island approaching completion in SL. According to their website: "Universal McCann is in a unique position in the industry as a communications company with a heritage and behavior that is closely linked and integrated into the process of developing creative ideas and solutions, bringing together the collaborative powers of media and creative, the seamless execution of contact and content." Which is simply peachy. Their client include: Coca Cola , Exxon Mobil, Sony, Intel , Johnson & Johnson and many more.

They once claimed: "Second Life and World of Warcraft are currently working together to form a cross-genre community MMOG, SLoW. It's certainly a risk and is expected to take close to two years to build; the combination will allow hybrid interaction in a world of blended niches. This will be an exciting opportunity for marketers to test out new marketing techniques in an "otherworld" while breaking down the barrier of the fantasy genre." The fact that neither Blizzard Software or Linden Labs were aware of this rather undermines the claim. Mind you, it's an interesting concept - is everyone getting aboard the 3D Internet express?

Actually - there's a message coming in from Al, somewhere deep in the wastes of SL. He says there's so many new islands under construction he's going to have to have a bit of lie-down. What's posted here is merely a sample.

Al, take the pencils out of your nose, and stop saying "wibble!"

Al scouts out NBC & IBM again - and stumbles over a Merc

Al was feeling a bit uninspired today, so he thought he'd check out some old (and not so old) haunts. NBC, who made a big song'n'dance about lighting their Xmas tree in SL to coincide with the same event in RL, have somewhat cut back on their islands. At Xmas they had something in excess of 10 islands (What's that, Al? 17 you reckon?). Anyhoo, there's only 1 left now - and it seems Spring has sprung early. Gone is the skating rink, to be replaced by the latest in virtual alfresco cappucination.

Al reported recently that NBC Sports, still under construction, may have been vandalised by Weberphobes. He now reports that access to this grimy sports bar is now open, and has furnished photgraphic evidence to support his claim.

Al also ambled along to see what those chaps at IBM were up to, and was amused to note that they seem to have recruited some new staff, in the form of these exotic builders. He also noted that the mighty Irving Wladawsky-Berger (to be eaten one mouthful at a time), IBM's god of all-things-virtual, has been honoured with his own boulevard.

Newsflash: This just in from our roving reporter, Al. He's just stumbled upon yet another big name new entrant into SL: Mercedes Benz now have an island. Don't hold your breath, it's completely bare at the moment, but nevertheless, there is it.

Also, Forum Europe's island is taking shape - why not enter their art challenge? If all goes to plan the site will offer the following sexy features:
  • integration of external chat channels (for those who won't log into SL but may participate through text chat)
  • web-site plugin of "SL-cam" to see what's actually is going on in SL without starting the SL client
  • adding audio support (like teamspeak)
  • integration of community & e-Learning features
  • multi device accessability
And finally iDoctor TV is setting up here. Never heard of it? Me neither. Part of the Euromed group, it promises to be "your online doctor" - sounds ghastly!
And a final "finally" - can this be true?! "BandQ"??? The retail park DIY company? Surely not!

Sunday, 28 January 2007

Second Life hits 3 Million accounts

SL, at the time of writing, is standing at 2,980,370 accounts - less than 20 thousand off the next big milestone. Given the rate at which Germans have been coming into Second Life over the weekend, following recent coverage on German TV, we are likely to see our 3 Millionth resident some time later today.

I wouldn't put the champagne on ice just yet. SL is a long, long way from retaining all of these accounts. But at least it shows the power of TV. The same happened a couple of months back with Brazil - an article on TV led to what seemed like a wholesale immigration.

UPDATE: This is about 4 hours later - and the total now stands at: 3,020,735

Saturday, 27 January 2007

Elementary my dear Al

Al's been playing with his Elemental vehicle - car, plane, boat thing (see yesterday's entry). More anon, when he's reported back his findings. but here's a couple of piccies to whet your appetite:

Friday, 26 January 2007

Al struggles with initials & L words

Al is finding it hard these days. All these new whippersnappers entering SL have to sheer gall to ban ramblers from entering before they're good & ready. So you can imagine how miffed he was wehen couldn't get entry to KGBR islands - all 20 of 'em. So he's been squandering his time instead trying to figure out who this might be? Not the radio station for a throwback, soviet spy outfit surely? The Mighty Google suggests KGBR 92.7 FM, a Pennsylvania radio station - but Al and I are hard pushed to see why a radio station would shell out nearly $35K for a bunch of islands, and that's without build costs. Perhaps you, gentle reader, can enlighten us.

And whilst we're on the subject of initials... what's with the 25 islands set aside for "The L Word". We know what it is, we're just curious as to why it suddenly needs 25 islands in SL. The build seems to be the work of Mr DNA Prototype, of the Electric Sheep Company. It's nicely detailed and textured - if exhibiting a little too much contrast in the style of Weber Studios. The main L Word island has lots of shops on which to squander your Linden's - but even better: when Al dropped in he found an "Elemental car/bike/whatever thing"! Scouting out this general area, there are also a number of L Word Orientation islands, for use by Second Life newbies. Why so much effort? You can always register to find out - but Al's not bothered.

UPDATE: Here is an article from Second Life Herald about it. It seems that newbies can avoid the congestion at the usual Orientation Islands by coming straight (?) into The L Word's own Orientation islands. Of course, that also means avoiding all the weirdo stuff you would otherwise be likely to encounter as soon as you enter the main grid. A major improvement in the user experience, and one likely to be taken up by RL companies looking to host meetings and events in SL.

UPDATE 2: The opportunity to enter SL via The L Word orientation islands comes courtesy of a new feature, still in Beta test - the Registration API. Acording to LL: "This API will allow you to register users of Second Life from your own website, and set those users to a default login orientation experience and estate that you operate. Important limitations and conditions apply, including the requirement that you make clear that users registering for Second Life account through your website are establishing a relationship with Linden Lab, separate from their relationship with you." Thanks to Team Mascot for the info on this.

A word to any L Word fans. The main island seems to have a lot of visitors, so lag could be a problem. If you do experience lag, why not use your map/Search and locate one of the other islands, as they all appear to be clones of the main island.

Thursday, 25 January 2007

Uncle Sam is out to lunch...

Al has put his cannon away for now and has sought out those noble defenders of democracy on Capitol Hill. Aside from a bloke from The Press and a few bored-looking pigeons, the place was deserted - and the guy from The Press b*ggered off, too. Al, you must need better personal hygiene.

As for Capitol Hill - not much to say really - it probably works best when there's something to observe, though it does have a number of useful web links to US Govt stuff. As for the nature of Democracy - well in SL, maybe everbody's a democracy-of-one nowadays. There are noble, well-intention folk like the Neufreistadters being frightfully grownup - but even there, the SL political parties seem to be having internal spats, which (if taken to their illogical conclusion) will result in a whole raft of Party-of-Me's.

With these thoughts rattling around his pea-like (in size and shape - and probably, consistency) brain, Al went to visit the Sundance Channel island torelax with a movie or two. A general absence of hotdogs, popcorn and fizzy, tooth-dissolving beverages detracted from the experience - and the main movie no longer seems to be running. But to make up for that, Al did get a free bag of goodies - and saw a brilliant animated short: "Sou". You can see a brief snippet at YouTube.

And finally - just to show there's more to Life than politics and popcorn, here's some Pie. The Anime Pie Diner (warning! No guarantee this link is worksafe) starts to take shape - but needs some decent pie-throwing scripts. Any ideas?

Oh.. and you have noticed that Al is sporting a virtual bluetooth headset. That's his Second Talk, Skype-based phone. An idea that looks great to begin with, but ... more of this in a post on slmascot.blogspot.com.

Wednesday, 24 January 2007

AOL and Myst Online Uru islands.

Al's off building something or another - he was muttering some nonsense about "cannons" when last seen, so I thought I'd better do this short one for him about new AOL and Myst islands.

Sadly none of these are open yet, but the new AOL island "AOL pointe" appears to be at an advanced stage of construction, if the satellite map is anything to go by. Also in the vicinity is "Myst Online Uru" island. Yes, after a long absence Myst is back and about to go virtual world. It won't be in Second Life I'm sure, but this island is presumably there to serve as both ad and taster for the new game, coming to a new MMORPG near you sometime soon(ish).

For those so inclined here is a recent "Macworld" article about the new game. I will probably extend this post if Al comes back with some pictures, but I'm not optimistic.

UPDATE: 12-02-07
GameTap has announced Thursday, February 15th, as the official release date for the highly anticipated debut of “Myst Online: Uru Live.” This new adventure-driven take on the massively multiplayer online game genre will feature the ongoing release of new content and will become simultaneously available in fourteen countries around the world. You can get a PDF version of the manual here.

Monday, 22 January 2007

Al contrasts RRR and Weber Studios

Or so he likes to believe.
On his rambles Al has found that the island belonging to UK ad company, Bartle,Bogle,Hegarty is now pretty much open for business. OK, the bar is still missing a roof and most of the office space is decidely naked, but at least it can be visited (Search on your inworld Map for "BBH"). BBH actually announced their entry in SL back in September, 2006 - but it seems to be only recently that they opened the doors to solitary wanderers like Al.
Any follower of this amblesome, ramblesome blog should be able to spot the tell-tale construction work of leading UK virtual builders, Rivers Run Red. What? You can't? For shame! See if the piccies above give you any visual clues (click to make them bigger - as the actress...etc...).

Right, now that we've got RRR visual style sorted - see if you can spot who might have built this: Reebok's island (slap bang next door to Adidas).

That's right! Award yourself a GOLD star!
The machine on the left is a cool idea. You buy a blank pair of trainers (for 50 L$) and then take them to this machine to hand-craft them to the colour scheme of your choice. Cool eh?

So that's RRR. Now we've also looked at the building style of Aimee Weber and her team, which uses richly contrasting textures and fine detailing - something like this, from the (seemingly) under construction NBC Sports islands (Search under "Second City").
Two have this building on them, the other 2 are basically just being landscaped. Al did spot a giveaway clue to the builders' identity: there is a NBC Peacock Room entrance on Second City 2, this is the third of these he's seen, the other two being on the NBC island cluster and on Midnight City, both Aimee Weber builds.

There is one question, though... Is the pile of boxes and dope leaf particles a griefer protest, or a mechanism to deter unwanted guests like Al? Answers on a postcard please... Or a comment would be even better!

PS: I haven't forgotten about the Autism Museum, or the Anime Pie Diner, now under construction. You will just need to be patient!

Sunday, 21 January 2007

Al checks out the new NMC islands (+ Updates)

In an earlier post, Al noted that the New Media Consortium (and allied pals) had now amassed a total land mass of some 30 islands - but only the central core were accessible. He's pleased to say that access is now available for most of the islands - although to be fair, most are empty, with the exception of the downright odd "Service" island, with its assortment of retro-futurist motocars, metal statues, dino skeletons and of course, Bender (photos below):

And Al was particularly intrigued by "Research 3". Unlike the other main islands of the group (with the exception of MIT, Princeton & Cornell) this island is off-limits while building proceeds.
However Al got close enough for a quick snapshot:

Aside from the lure of forbidden fruit, what is intriguing about this island is that (if you squint really hard) it appears to be a joint venture with IBM. Certainly, there are discrete IBM screens dotted about the place. It looks like the relationship between IBM and NMC is about to get even closer.


  • While we're in a mood for self-improvement, Al would like to point out that he's just spotted Coventry University island.(UK - he assumes). Absolutely nothing there yet - which is probably why he can get it. No doubt it will close once the construction starts.
  • Meanwhile, on an adjacent island, Forum Europe is looking to kick off its presence. If it is the one accessed here then this is what is says about itself: "Forum Europe's contribution to the debate on European economic and political issues goes beyond conferences, publications and press relations. Forum Europe carries out long-term projects that raise the profile of people, subjects and/or organisations, and are much more than PR vehicles." Which is nice...
  • And a minor build.. The Bartle,Bogle,Hegarty island is now open for inspection. More of this anon, when I can be bothered.

More recent entrants and site visits...

Text 100, which sounds like a telecomms company but is actually a PR company, have been busy in SL (here's a SLURL). There's been some solid thought gone into this one - for the cheapskate, there are freebies in the form of puzzles that you can play onsite or copy for later use... Nice touch. Or why not play Babel? Build a tower of prims - highest at the end 5 mins wins (and, of course, some freebie objects to pimp your tower). Or SLictionary - an SL form of Pictionary (sounds hard to me).
For the more tradionally minded, there are games of dice, backgammon and chess. In fact, there's so much stuff here you'd best check it out for yourself (and No, I'm not an employee of theirs!). Walking around the site, it is clear that they have a shrewd notion of what works in SL. The meeting and information facilities feel like a natural extension of the fun & games area. The only thing missing appears to be a greeter.
The builder (at least on the components I checked) is Endira Udal, founder of Rezzust, and who works with Electric Sheep.

  • Al, meanwhile, has been fulfiiling his public service remit by visiting Annenberg a site for University of South California Center (sic) on Public Diplomacy. In their own words: "The Public Diplomacy and Virtual Worlds project is a research project examining one aspect of new technology and public diplomacy: the role of video games, specifically Massively Multiplayer Online Games (MMOGs), in public diplomacy."
  • He's also had a quick squint at Mediacom , on their logically named island "Mediacom Island" a company "responsible for planning and buying the advertising for some of the world’s biggest companies – among them Procter & Gamble, Shell, Glaxo Smithkline, Royal Bank of Scotland, Nokia, Masterfoods, VW and Universal." The island itself still looks to be under construction, or maybe they just like that "unfinished" look.
  • And finally, for those who get their kicks out of IT service delivery and for whom ITIL is their God, there is Itelligence. Now this really is virgin terrain - Al was surprised to even get in. Absolutely nothing here yet - but watch this space in months to come. Itelligence are based in Mebourne and do... well... "ITIL stuff". Let Al and me know if you know different.
  • UPDATE: New Media Consortium has added a new island - "Services" - and a strange kind of place it is too. You can meet Bender (from Futurama) and his svelte robo-girlfriend. More of this in another post - just thought you might like to know.

Saturday, 20 January 2007

Al goes to NOAA

At last, the long-awaited NOAA island has been opened up to ramblers. It's another Aimee Weber build, with its almost trademark combo of great textures and ideas, with some relatively ropey UI. Al reckons the best way to get an idea of it is to look at the map first:
There are several interactive exhibits, including a working realtime weather-map of the USA (not much use to Al - he's in SL), virtual globe, glacier & tsunami, a research sub ride, a meteorological balloon ride and a hurricane flight. Most are accompanied by a voiceover - maybe they all are, but if so, some didn't work as well as others. It was strangely quiet - so Al's not sure it's really been officially opened yet. Al expected more jostling! Oh... and a freebie? Very nice I'm sure, Al. He nolonger needs his magic SLURLball since the latest Viewer update, but here's the SLURL for NOAA.

Snap-happy Al took a load of piccies - but he's only going to load 1 more for now... he's in there somewhere, flying thru the eye of a hurricane.

What's that Al? One more? Oh... OK then:

Al's RL master writes: Much as I admire the aims of NOAA in this, and the work of Ms Weber, it really doesn't quite work for me. It all feels a bit too contrived, and the anims - good for SL as they are - are nonetheless clunky compared to 2D documentary footage or, indeed, CGI animation. Good effort - but it left me a bit cold - or maybe that's what comes of sitting on a glacier.

Getting Serious for a mo...

Al is off in SL somewhere, so I thought I had better fill in for him on this entry.
The Guardian newspaper today printed an article about the French Nat1onal Fr0nt in Second Life. Somehow it had passed me by that these neo-fascists had entered SL - but seemingly they've been there for a couple of months. And the problem for a do-goodie-good liberal/libertarian like me is how to respond. This unholy crew is utterly repugnant to me, so do I have to acknowledge their right to be in SL? Regrettably, the answer is "yes", even though I suspect they would not extend the same right to me, if they had the power.

OK then, given that they have a right to be in SL, how should I react? There are 2 choices as I see it: ignore them, or confront them.

It brings to my mind the words of Dietrich Bonnhoeffer, talking about suppression in Nazi Germany: "First they came for the Communists, but I was not a Communist so I did not speak out. Then they came for the Socialists and the Trade Unionists, but I was neither, so I did not speak out. Then they came for the Jews, but I was not a Jew so I did not speak out. And when they came for me, there was no one left to speak out for me.”

So.. confrontation it is. See you sometime in Porcupine.

UPDATE: Al has just been to Porcupine and was impressed by the Autism Museum & Library. He's still exploring - and may post an item later.

Meanwhile, in other news...

  • Vodafone's director of brand strategy and manifestation (ed: "manifestation"? wtf is that?), David Erixon, announced at the Marketing Week Interactive Conference earlier this week that they would be launching a mobile phone business within Second Life. What's new about it (apparently) is that there is no phone booth needed to make calls (unlike Vivox). Vodafone's service makes the phones untethered, and allows users to have conversations between avis in Second Life or between Second Life and the real world. Haven't they heard about Second Talk, the new Skype-based service?
  • The ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) has expressed an interest in creating a virtual space within Second Life, according to SLinsider. Maybe that'd explain the appearance of a new island in the Aussie area of SL called, imaginatively, "ABC Island". Also of note - there is a SL Oz forum for Aussies to discuss SL-related stuff (I suppose).

Saturday, 13 January 2007

Al thinks it's Balls (Plus an update)

And using that corny pun, Al has stumbled across Ball State University (Indiana), who have 2 islands in SL: Middletown and Media Design. This is quite an interesting site, in that it was the Rhetoric course that led the way here - with design following after. Why Rhetoric? Al is glad you asked. Well... in a classroom environment the students are less inclined to participate, let alone stand up and spout forth rhetorically. Apparently a depressingly low %age are up for it. But in SL, the buffer between self and avatar is sufficient to break this reluctance... which is nice. Also, students have cool gizmos to play with - which is also nice!

Here's where the Media Design folk have reached so far...

UPDATE: On Ohio University. The Outreach island is now open - and offers a tour. Some (all)of it is Aimee Weber --- Al, you should've guessed from those textures! Stoopid Al.

What's that Al? Chants of "All hail Aimee" you can hear? Your febrile imagination is playing tricks again - but the principle is sound!

Al spots Cool Britannia?

During a meandering ramble, Al ambled past this point of interest:

Clearly, development has not even started - but Manchester, in England-land, is collaborating in 3 builds:
Urbis is the Museum of Urban Life, in central Manchester
One Manchester is an initiative in response to the UK government's Digital Challenge
Manchester UK ? Probably what is says it is

The other island, 21CC, had Al puzzled - but the helpful people at Urbis have corrected Al's suspicion that this was something to do with the BBC. The 21CC in question is actually a Manchester-based virtual worlds consultancy, Clicks & Links, who are helping with the build. FYI: the moniker "21CC" = 21st Century Communities. [Thx Urbistas! 15-01-06]

PS: During the same ramble, Al also spotted "Brighton UK". This looks fairly advanced, and as you can see, there are a couple of people (builders?) there. But it's not open to the public yet.
Ho hum...

ING Update

On Thurdsay night (11-01-07) Al was kicked out of ING island, and has not managed to get back in. He reckons that ING (and RRR) are on the final countdown to launch, and are finishing off the island in readiness. Either that, or they've just taken against him! LOL

Friday, 12 January 2007

NMC undergoing massive expansion

The New media Consortium islands, already an excellent port of call for anyone in education (NMC comprises over 200 colleges and universities), is undergoing yet another growth spurt.

Cornell and Princeton are the latest additions, though not open to the public. MIT is also here, but little seems to have progressed on this in the last couple of months. In addition, a cluster of new islands are being added. Many appear to be general teaching islands, while others are focused on specific disciplines: Maths; Sciences; Arts & Letters. This site is rapidly becoming - or has already become - the largest cluster of islands in SL! I make it 30 sims. Please Note: to go there you will need to join the NMC guest list here.

Al visits BMW

Al dropped by the BMW island to see what was going on. Answer? Well... not much really - and to make matters worse, his magic SLURLball wouldn't work. It looks like BMW have rather rushed to publicise the island - but it looks somewhat incomplete at the moment. Lots of stark white - and little detailed texturing. Too stark for Al's tastes. Still, it's good to see yet another motor manufacturer joining the merry throng already here.

It's easy to find - "Map"->"Search"->"BMW"

Next door is Phase4 - still under construction and no real indication who/what it is for... there's so many "phase 4" companies about. Anyhoo, Al managed a quick snap of what's there now. But it looks a good ways off yet.

UPDATE: It seems that Phase 4 refers to Phase 4 Communications, who appear to be responsible for the BMW island build. If Babelfish is to be believed (and who could doubt it) Phase 4 were responsible for "consultation, conception, 3D-Modelling, Scripting and support" of the BMW island. So that solves that little riddle! :-)

Monday, 8 January 2007

Al knows the way to San Jose...

It's right next door to Cybrary apparently - and still in deep development mode. He can be a right uncharitable git sometimes, can Al. He reckons that given all the mess (with a twist of twisted flair), it must be mainly a bunch of students doing the build. So that's another of the Halls of Academe in SL.. It's not clear though whether this is mainly for digital media students, or for the whole Uni. Given the size and nature of the build, and its location, Al's money is on the latter.

Al does some pole-squatting while he tries to figure it out.

No SLURL on this one... it's too easy to find - indeed, it's hard to miss!

Al goes to AKQA

AKQA are, to quote press releases, "...the leading independent digital marketing agency with more than 475 employees in six locations...AKQA provides digital strategy, creative and technology solutions to the world's leading marketers, including Unilever, Coca-Cola, Nike, Diageo and Microsoft." Al has been to their island, built by Millionsofus, to take a look. It launched in November 2006 "as a hub for recruiting, hosting 'AKQA Insight' seminars and collaborating with Second Life residents on creative projects...Another goal of AKQA's journey into Second Life will be to collaborate with artists, musicians, and content creators on creative projects with AKQA and its clients."

Oddly, perhaps, there is nothing on the AKQA website about it... and when Al glanced into the backyard he found a build template still set up. Maybe it's not quite ready yet?! Or maybe it's just a sandbox...

News from LL

Al says you should check out the SL blog for Monday, 8th Jan - http://blog.secondlife.com/2007/01/08/embracing-the-inevitable/ . LL have announced that the SL client is now open source. In an article in money.cnn ( http://tinyurl.com/y4xko3 ) there is the following quote - which set Al's mouth positively a-quiver:
Rosedale and other executives say they fully expect there eventually to be multiple virtual worlds that use Linden's code, or that at least are interoperable with Second Life, so avatars can pass from one world to another. Says Rosedale: "Say IBM builds its own intranet version with our code that's somewhat different from Second Life. But it's probably not that different. A user may say 'Wow, this virtual thing IBM's built is pretty cool. Now I want to go the mainland.' And we have another customer."
Bring it on!!! Oh Happy Day...

Sunday, 7 January 2007

Al in Slackstreet

Just feast your eyes... Many thanks to Spin Martin for the guided tour.
Slackstreet is one of 4 sims, soon to be 5, being built directly or indirectly by Spin Martin. One look at the textures is enough to persuade cognoscenti that this is the work of Aimee Weber or a protegee. Indeed the Regina Spektor "loft" is Aimee's - the original can be found at Millionsofus. I understand Spin worked with Aimee, and has learned a lot of her techniques. And he's applied them brilliantly. The set of islands is still under construction, but there's something for everyone here - offices, conference facilities, musician spaces, museums... and a killing zone, for those so inclined. Spin is also housing an Event Horizon simulation, which is otherwise homeless (see piccies below). A number of companies - many with associations to Spin - have set up here.
Hint: If you visit Saijo (one of the islands) switch to midnight mode - it's rather fine!

SLURLball: http://slurl.com/secondlife/Slackstreet/143/85/25/?title=Slackstreet

Al visits the bank...

A couple of Dutch banks have established presences in SL. First to launch was ABN Amro, who now have 4 or 5 islands, though only one is currently ready/in use.
Now ING are building their island... Judging by the look of it, Al's guess is that it's a Rivers Run Red build. At time of writing, there's still bits of developer rubble lying around, so it must be a few weeks from official launch.

Al's tip of the moment: SL is a "people place" - it needs people to animate it, not just attractively expensive (expensively attractive?) builds. ABN in particular need to get their act together and get a greeter-in-residence. Normally people have to pay serious wads of cash for consultancy advice like that!

No SLURL ball --- clever people like you can find these islands without Al's help.

AL is in need of some consultation...

So he's been to PA Consulting's island.
PA Consulting were the first major IT consulting company to establish a presence in SL. They also have another island, but that's not open to ramblers like Al. They are working to get the most out SL, with regular meetings and a planned[?] job fair. They also have built an interactive house, which is well worth a visit...
They employ greeters to welcome visitors and show them around... something other RL businesses have been slow to recognise the need for.

Al forgot to use his magic SLURLball, so you will have to find it by using "MAP">"Search" and putting in "PA Cons" in the search box.

PS: Al enjoyed their Xmas party- even if there was an excess of Duran Duran... PPS: Good luck, Michi ,with your venture!

Al goes to Ohio

Al has gone back to Uni... dropping in on Ohio University:

Ohio has 2 islands - the main Uni island and an Outreach island that is not currently open to ambling ramblers like Al.The main island has an Arts & Music building, conference facilities, student common room and a Learning Center (below). Oh... and a burger outlet.
Although much has already been constructed, it is clear that there is much more to come. Al's magic SLURL ball says go here:

Saturday, 6 January 2007

Al has gone to a Better World...

Al thought he'd better take stock of his situation, and sought out a Better World...

Unfortunately, this world is not the happiest of places, for it houses Camp Darfur - a reminder (if we needed one) of our ability to create human misery wherever and whenever it takes our collective fancy.
And what is more... lag tonight has been truly appalling... tho' that hasn't stopped Al from snapping the interior of Manor Meta... "Absolutely 'strodinary" Al was heard to remark.

Anyhoo... SLURL ball says go here: http://slurl.com/secondlife/Better%20World/196/183/24/?title=Better_World