Throughout my existence in Second Life, I’ve seen numerous spam messages being disseminated over group chat, promising “free Lindens”. A few days ago, I even saw one such topic get spammed in the “Second Life” subforum of the Avatar Social Network’s (review coming up soon) forum, and a quick search on Google provided quite a few results, some of them fairly recent (August 2014). According to those behind these messages, there are “cheats” that can “generate” more L$ at will.

I’ll be blunt about these “free, infinite Lindens” schemes: They are SCAMS, operated by con artists, and you should NEVER fall for them. For the benefit of group and forum members, these messages and their posters get deleted almost immediately by the moderators. However, it’s certain that some people have fallen, and still fall for these scams. If no one fell for them, there would be no incentive for the scammers to still keep looking for victims. So, a few things need to be explained to anyone that may be tempted.

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The Sea of Cubic Dreams.

The Sea of Cubic Dreams. Please click on the image for larger version.

No, nothing’s changed since my first visit to ALEGRIA Studio‘s beautiful exhibit “The Sea of Cubic Dreams” at LEA25. Their upcoming “Theater Night’s Dream” project is, as far as I can tell, still work-in-progress – so, this preview should suffice for now. If you want to learn more about it, read my previous article on it, or Inara Pey and Ziki Questi‘s posts.

The Sea of Cubic Dreams

The Sea of Cubic Dreams. Please click on the picture for larger version.

I have to admit I’ve always been a hesitant traveller in Second Life, not least because I’ve never had a really decent computer that would enable me to enjoy SL’s full potential; in fact, even merely moving around has been a chore for me when exploring richly-decorated and/or crowded regions. I think you can easily guess that trying to take snapshots that could hold a candle to those gorgeous in-world photographs from various well-known in-world travelogue blogs (like Ziki Questi’s, or Honour McMillan’s, or Quan Lavender’s, or Inara Pey’s, or Loverdag’s) was completely out of my reach. It was only fairly recently (two years ago, actually) that I started exploring more of SL – and, by exploring, I don’t mean the typical, cookie-cutter club/mall fare.

The Sea of Cubic Dreams

The Sea of Cubic Dreams. Please click on the picture for larger version.

Even so, few in-world builds have managed to keep me interested in them. Of the places I’ve visited, only a few have I bothered to visit again, and even fewer are my “regular haunts”. Now, while The Sea of Cubic Dreams certainly can’t become a “regular haunt” for me, because it will only be here for a few months, it’s a magnificent installation. In fact, I’ve liked it so much that, over the course of a single week, I’ve visited it three times already.

The Sea of Cubic Dreams

The Sea of Cubic Dreams. Please click on the picture for larger version.

Also, for someone with my tastes, it’s a shutterbug’s heaven. The colour scheme, the region windlight, the texturing, the arrangements of the cubes all across the region, they all conspired to make me want to come back, fool around with the cubes, and take more photographs each time. There have been only a few times so far that I’ve enjoyed snapping away so much.

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The successful crowdfunding campaign for the Oculus Rift, which led to Oculus VR’s acquisition by Facebook in March (which I have covered here), brought virtual reality back to the media’s spotlight. Suddenly, everybody discovered the immense potential offered by VR, but the discussion has been focused mostly on the devices and not on VR itself. This can easily lead to confusion. In fact, it already has.

The Oculus Rift. Image: Paste Magazine

The Oculus Rift. Is it a device for VR applications or is it VR itself? Image: Paste Magazine

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Some content creators in Second Life really don’t understand the basic notions of courtesy and respect for the customer, and I’m not talking about customer service here. Like many of you people, I shop around for things that catch my eye – whatever these things may be. And then, some of the content creators from whose shops (in-world or marketplace) I’ve shopped think I gave them permission to send me monthly, bi-weekly, weekly, or even daily updates about their new products, events, hunts, sales, etc.

This means that my SL-only email is inundated with notifications for these inventory offers, which I delete. And then, when I log in, I have to delete these notifications in-world as well, and discard the inventory offers as well. No, I can’t turn the “receive offline notifications in my email” off, because that way I’d lose the ability to receive notifications for communications I’m actually interested in, and I can’t report them as spam, because then my webmail provider’s spam filtering system would end up blocking offline IMs as spam too.

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The Sea of Cubic Dreams at LEA25

The Sea of Cubic Dreams at LEA25. Click on the picture for the full-size version.

On Saturday, August 16th, the ALEGRIA Studio team opened its new installation at LEA25, titled The Sea of Cubic Dreams. It’s an interactive installation, and acts as a prelude for a larger work that will be presented there under the title of Theater Night’s Dream, which, as the team say, will be a surrealistic CG New Media art installation inspired by the theatre and the fantasy culture, the protagonists of videogames, the Cloud Atlas film and William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

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