Monthly Archives: June 2021

Strawberry Linden (left) with Brad Oberwager (Oberwolf Linden) at June 21st’s Lab Gab SL18B Special

On Monday, June 21st, I attended the airing of the Lab Gab SL18B Special show with Strawberry Linden (née Singh). It was a lengthy, much-anticipated, and newsworthy show, as it’s only been less than three weeks after the passing of esteemed LL CEO Ebbe Altberg. The show was divided into two sections: in the first, Strawberry interviewed Linden Lab Board member and Executive Chairman Brad Oberwager (in-world name: Oberwolf Linden); in the second, she interviewed the Lab’s Leadership Team, which consists of VP of Product Anya Kanevsky (in-world name: Grumpity Linden), VP of Product Operations Eric Nix (in-world name: Patch Linden), and VP of Marketing Brett Atwood (in-world name: Brett Linden).

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To those of us who have been watching the Second Life blogosphere, the existence of the Environment Enhancement Project (EEP), which replaces Windlight, has been well-known for quite a while. After all, it’s been well-documented and extensively written about, and quite a few tutorials exist for it. Furthermore, after Firestorm’s 6.4.13.63251 release (regardless of people’s personal preference, Firestorm is the most popular third-party viewer for SL), practically every SL user now has the user interface to use EEP.

I won’t mince my words: I never liked the way the Sun looked in any of the existing windlights. Historically, the Sun in SL skies has always looked like a hexagon – blurry or relatively sharp. This made shooting sunsets or sunrises in SL a rather unappealing endeavour. Thankfully, EEP has allowed us to use our own textures for the Sun or the Moon. So, not only do we get to have a decent-looking sun in the sky, but also use a custom texture for a unique effect. As far as the Moon is concerned, we can depict a different moon phase simply by using a different texture. Also, EEP gives us the chance to set the duration of the day cycle. In these regards, EEP is considerably more powerful than Windlight’s implementation has been. However, there’s still room for improvement.

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Yesterday, I found out that the Moles created a memorial for the late LL CEO Ebbe Altberg. It is located in the middle of a small, fir-covered islet in the Altberg region in Bellisseria. You can teleport directly there or, if you’re starting your journey from any of the nearby regions, you can moor your boat by the islet’s small cove and follow the stepped path to the small plateau where the memorial has been erected.

The Ebbe Altberg Memorial Islet, Altberg (Rated: Moderate)

No landing point has been set, so, at the end of this post, I’m giving you a landmark that takes you to the base of the stepped path. Once there, you see a bench made from tree logs, facing a large bronze statue of Ebbe’s Second Life avatar. The statue itself is placed on a small plaza made from boulders in the shape of the Second Life logo, and more specifically where the eye would be, and has a waterfall on one side behind it. Flowers are scattered on the plinth, which is surrounded by candles.

Ebbe Altberg’s Statue, Altberg (Rated: Moderate)

At the bottom of the plinth, a plaque, slanted upwards, reads:

Ebbe Altberg

1964 – 2021

Always in our hearts

Above the plaque, an open book has been sculpted on the plinth; on the left-hand page, there is Ebbe’s RL likeness, while on the page on the right one can read Patch Linden’s announcement of Ebbe’s passing.

Ebbe Altberg’s Statue, Altberg (Rated: Moderate)

It’s a touching, thoughtful move on behalf of the Lab’s personnel, which shows how much they valued Ebbe and recognised him as a true leader and a valued colleague and friend.

SLurl: Altberg (Rated: Moderate)

Flickr Album: https://flic.kr/s/aHsmVZCdxv

The late Ebbe Altberg at the 2015 Web Summit
The late Ebbe Altberg at the 2015 Web Summit in Dublin, Ireland – Image Credit: Web Summit

The first weekend of June wasn’t a good one for Linden Lab, Second Life, or for anyone who cares about either of them. LL’s CEO, Ebbe Altberg, passed away on Friday. His passing came as a shock to most people, although there was a certain amount of speculation, triggered the fact that he was largely absent from all sorts of social media during the past few months.

As we should expect, discussions as to who his successor should / could / will be, or – at least – what properties the new CEO should possess have already started to sprout like mushrooms on ageing trees in a damp forest. I can’t say such discussions are to my taste; for one, I think they started too soon, at a moment when others, closer to him, are still trying to deal with his passing. Furthermore, I find flaws in the more popular approaches, and the less said about the quality of discourse, the better. The popular argument says that the new CEO needs to be a long-time SL user, who has garnered a good deal of experience with the platform. The reasoning is that a CEO that is selected from the user base is somehow more likely to “get” Second Life than someone else.

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Little Santorini
Shades of Santorini, Nefeli – June 2021

Nefeli – this is the name of the island of which I’m about to tell you. Named thus after Nephele, the cloud nymph of Greek mythology. Created by Zeus from a cloud (νέφος – nephos – in Greek) in the image of Hera; mother of the Centaurs, and also of Phrixus and Helle, who both featured prominently in the myth of the Golden Fleece.

Being Greek, I’m always interested in regions and builds inspired by my country; this part of the world is woefully under-represented in Second Life, as buildings, trees, shrubs, bushes, and even geological features that are found here are very few and far between on the Marketplace and in mainstores, and what I do find is usually disappointing. Lately, however, a few new places have started popping up, featuring Greek-themed parts that are of a higher calibre than was the norm. Nefeli is one of them, and I think it’s safe to say it captures the essence and morphology of the Greek islands better than most similarly-themed regions I’ve seen so far.

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