Dexcon 9

I am currently sitting at the Hilton East Brunswick, awaiting the beginning of Dexcon’s opening ceremonies.

Though I’ve been here many times now (and at several different hotels over the years), this year is slightly different. I’ve donated prizes both to their opening ceremonies and to their prize pool (the latter will arrive on Friday morning). It’s also the first time in awhile that I could not get all the days off, so right after this I have to run off to work. Ah well…

It should be an interesting weekend, as I’ve decided to bring my HP notebook over here and actually use it, much like I did at State of Play last October.

Of course, there’s also that thing about work again. As I was leaving for here, there was a problem that may need my presence later on in the night. *sigh* Typical.

Wish me luck; I’ll send an update of sorts probably on Friday, as I will not make it back here on Thursday.


EDIT – For the last (and most expensive) item I had donated, I was asked to come up to do the draw. Of course, it took three pulls before someone hit, since you have to be in the room when the number is called. Given this week, I was not entirely surprised. *rolling eyes*

Continuing Fun With a Slug – Gentoo Time…

For those first hearing about this little adventure, I wanted a little box to run irssi off of, that was inexpensive, low-power, and the flexibility of a Linux box.

So I got a Linksys NSLU2 NAS, and re-flashed it with a special Embedded Linux kernel (Google for OpenSlug).

Well, it worked, but irssi was horribly hobbled (in particular no Perl support), and several attempts to rectify the problem with my own cross-compiles failed miserably. But in the end, I always had something that worked at least; Just not the way I wanted it – I didn’t have the full Linux functionality to draw from.

So, today, I’m working on placing Gentoo on the Slug, as its affectionately known. Link is [here][GentooSlug].

So far, so good. I think. honestly, its a bit hard to tell currently. I do have emerge compiling and adding vim (from within the initial chroot – I’ve not rebooted yet), which is a heck of a lot better then the LAST time I tried this (The Sager notebook; see Comp Specs in sidebar for what it is). This may actually work, and give me a copy of irssi I finally need for my purposes.

Heh. It’s another form of Cautious Optimism I suppose. ;)

Anyway, looks like its also time for another catagory, as this is the third or fourth post on the subject. Stay tuned…



A Busy March

My apologies for being so lax here, at least from a posting perspective. Never said I’d be updating this on regular basis. ;)

Anyway, I really have been busy this month. Several things happening in rapid succession:

– A new desktop PC, which I *think* is on my ‘Computer Specs’ page (see sidebar). There’s a pain I don’t want to consider again…

– The loss of access to D’mala shard, and its fix about 1.5 weeks later (granting a last-minute access to this year’s St Pats Parade).

– Said Parade (very enjoyable day), as well as the hurried week beforehand doing my only practice. Thank Goodness for dealing with this before, as well as keeping it up the past year as an Honor Guard.

– Helping out on some scripting issues regarding the InnerLife plot in Tavarua (SL). I still need to check on the status of that.

– And (finally!) getting to do the research work on the presentation in July. I’ll be sending my application for it this weekend I hope. Again, I have another page in the sidebar if anyone’s interested in following that.

Anyway, I also just made the mistake of getting Oblivion. Not installed it yet, but probably will soon…

Brief Interlude in SL

[Alan links into Second Life, arriving at Shipley sim, landing point of one Hamlet Linden. He looks around, finds the place empty, and realizes [he’s late][Late]. Sighing, he sits down and writes]:

Best of luck Hamlet. Hope things turn out well in the short-term, and in particular for the book.

With your pending disconnect from ‘official’ links with Linden Lab, perhaps you should look at the other aspects of this growing set of worlds, what I’ve tended to term (perhaps more accurately) as meta-world instead of metaverse.

SL is just one aspect of course. I’ve looked at There, and ActiveWorlds, and of course my ‘main’ home in the Caverns of D’ni, within the vast Uru. They all have their places I think, each their strengths and weaknesses, and its still anyone’s guess what shall happen in the near future.

After all, no ending can ever be written; We live within that moment, and from that a new beginning arises.

–Alan Kiesler / T. S. Kimball

[Alan then leaves the note, and a Relto book, at the site, before linking away…]


Second Sabbatical, Solidifying

I’ve learned last night that I am no longer a Resident Moderator for the Second Life forums. One less thing to worry about, though I thought it would be to the end of the week.

I had been looking over my [Temporary Farewell to Live][FWL] as well, which appears to still stand even today. Glad to see that.

I’ve also talked with those still active on the rental parcel. Still have to track down one person, but I have enough L$ to handle the March rental.

Yes, things are winding down nicely. I hope this weekend to be mostly out of Second Life, and down to just a basic management role, one that can mostly be off-world.

‘Shall see…



Second Sabbatical, Revisited

With the opening of D’mala, and a pending ‘meeting’ from DRC, I begin to wonder if its worth staying in Second Life as much as I do.

As much as I like the environment, its been a bit of a drain on a wallet that can only withstand so much nowadays. Without revealing the exact amount I spend monthly on SL, I’ll just state that going to a ‘paid’ Live – even at US$15 monthly – would be a great *drop* from what I spend today.

I’ve held back on the possibility of creating Age content, or helping any of the varying ‘big’ projects that have already arisen, because of the uncertain state of Uru. That changed this week, quite a bit, and am now prepared to step up to the plate.

I am happy with what I’ve accomplished in SL however, and if I do exit I shall do so gracefully, so that others whom I help or work with can get re-directed to other venues.


Taking a ‘Page’ from SL to Re-Scale Uru

A post I made at UO bears repeating here:


What I’ve heard of the server software (from UU’s perspective) would not require too much major rework for scalability I think. You’re connecting to only one ‘Age’ instance at any one time anyway. So…

Put each Cavern instance (I heard 5? More likely 2-3 for ‘Production’) on a separate server or CPU/core; That should allow better connectivity and up to 100 or so instead of the average 45 (though total in shard was almost over 100 once?). Terrapin’s fog concept works well in this respect too; Never quite understood why you’d send/rcv movement data for somebody you can’t even see.

Relto/Nexus and anyone playing the Ages in ‘Prime’ fashion moved to one scalable cluster; Instances spawned should balance similar to game instances on something like Diablo II Realm Games. And ‘hoods on another scalable cluster. Since KI comms is mostly text, a meta-process similar to an IRC-daemon can be stuck on a medium-grade box.

I’d be curious to know what is getting reworked on Plasma. Because you could still do all this on *one* server and be compatible to the existing format. The all important crux is how much the network communication code got ‘fixed.’


I think I’ve spent too much time in SL, and as a Unix SysAdmin, to come up with something like this…



An Amazing Birthday

Yesterday, the 9th, has had several meanings for me the past couple years.

Other than the obvious (my birthday), its the anniversary of Uru Live’s Shutdown, for which I’ve been rather bitter and vocal about in the past. Because of that, and the activities of last year, it also became a symbol or indicator of what the year would be like, see what I would participate in.

Well, two things happened that day which could bode well for an exciting year.

First, Marie S. of the DRC posted a [small, yet appreciative][DRC] note for the day stating “we are anticipating being able to gather again with you in one place next week.” Yay! Very nice birthday gift, thanks!

Then, a couple hours later, Linden Lab (aka [Second Life][SL]) opened a new Preview. There were three basic things on this pending release:

– Estate (Island) Tools makover. More like overhaul, IMHO, and for the better. There’s more than what’s being discussed on the notes, even the wiki’s, to explain here. Suffice it to say, if you own an island sim (or several) there, you should be happy.

– A better ‘following’ camera when in a vehicle. Before it was locked (though settable by the scripter). This should make things more natural.

– Better communication on the backend, aka ‘Grid,’ for stability and scalability. Though mostly transparent to the client users, its a big step towards cleaning up the grid architecture and makes individual simulator ‘regions’ more autonomous. From the notes, many of the major functions are going through a couple central servers when it crosses the region boundries. This change will have the regions talk to each other direct, and thereby also make the grid more like a peer-to-peer network too.

There were also some scripting changes made, mostly in the data gathering for sims/regions and individual parcels.

As I said, a lot happened yesterday, and I’ve overall been happy. But between these two events, I can definately tell that my life just got *very* interesting…