A Look at the New Customization Features in Oculus Home

Some Oculus Home Decorations, Including a Mini Model of the Solar System

I must confess that I haven’t been paying much attention to Oculus Home, which I always saw just as a space to organize your purchased VR games and experiences. But Facebook/Oculus has been slowly but steadily building Oculus Home to the point where we can now consider it a true social VR platform. The VR news site UploadVR reports:

The latest update to Oculus Home adds custom environments support…

Support for user-generated objects was added back in June. A subsequent update even added animation support. And later in the month, the platform added real-time social, allowing up to 7 friends to visit your home and see those custom objects.

But until now the actual home geometry was the same for all users. The background could be changed between hills, space, a bay, or a future city, but the home itself could not.

David Hall (a long-time Sansar resident who has built a number of wonderful experiences including the Lord of the Rings-inspired Dwarven City and the futuristic Avalon social hub) has posted the following video to his YouTube channel. It is a livestream of him showing several of his own homes in Oculus Home, plus a tour of several other people’s homes:

I love the transition effects when David moves from one home to another, the way one home rezzes out of existence, and the new one rezzes in!

Oculus Home already includes functioning weapons such as bows and guns, as well as some cool animated content like a miniature model of the solar system you can see in a couple of visited homes in this video, and in the picture at the top of this blogpost.

I have now added Oculus Home to my list of social VR/virtual worlds.

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UPDATED! Doing Drag in Second Life: Part II

We’re all born naked, and the rest is drag.

—RuPaul, Born Naked

Last April, I wrote a blogpost about doing drag in Second Life, using a classic system (non-mesh) avatar:

Velcro Zipper, Second Life Drag Queen (System Avatar)
“The higher the hair, the closer to God.”

Today, I decided to challenge myself to see if I could create a drag queen look with the new Romeo group gift from Altamura. (By the way, today is the final day you can pick up the Romeo and Juliet full-body mesh avatars as group gifts at the Altamura mainstore! So, if you haven’t done so yet, hurry down to pick them up! They are a truly fabulous deal we will probably not see again for quite some time.)

One advantage of the Romeo full-body mesh avatar is that the lipstick, eyeliner, eyeshadow and nail polish can be applied directly from the included HUD! (How very metrosexual!) And the body is Omega compatible with the Altamura Omega relay installed, so despite the masculine shape, I could easily add Omega-applier ballgowns. Here’s what I was able to come up with in about 20 minutes:

MissDrag, Second Life Drag Queen (Mesh)
Hmm, I may have made MissDrag a little too tall. I may also need to adjust the body sliders a bit to get a shapelier figure…
Aah, yes, that’s much better. Shorter and curvier. Amazing what a little work with the body sliders can do, even with a male avatar!
The shoes under the ballgown!

This avatar is wearing:

  • Mesh head and body, including makeup: Altamura Romeo
  • Hair: FABIA Lilak mesh hair (free group gift, the FABIA group is free to join, but only between February 25th and March 15th, 2019)
  • Gown: black ballgown by UniQue (Omega appliers and flexiprim skirt; free from The Free Dove)
  • Stole and Jewelry: free group gifts from Glitzz at this SLURL; you must join the [G] Glitzz group for free to get these gifts)
  • Shoes with Feet: chained black sandal by YDEA (comes with a HUD to adjust the skin tone; free from The Free Dove). These are essential to replace the manly feet of the Romeo avatar! (You can hide the feet using the included HUD.)

TOTAL COST FOR THIS AVATAR: L$149 (L$50 to join the Altamura Design/Mesh Avatars group, and L$99 for the Altamura Omega system kit available at this SLURL).

Now, I’m going to take MissDrag over to Frank’s Jazz Club and see how long it takes before someone calls security 😉

UPDATE Feb. 28th: I spent another L$50 to join the Dotty’s Secret group and picked up all the free group gifts of drag makeup from the Dotty’s Secret group gifts wall (which include Omega appliers). Here’s another look, featuring the Miss Universe makeup set by Dotty’s Secret and yet another free ballgown from The Free Dove, this one by Graffitiwear:

An Interview with Egyptologist Bethany Simpson in High Fidelity

Andrew (the producer for my Metaverse Newscast show) has just put a video interview with Egyptologist Bethany Simpson up on YouTube:

Bethany conducts guided tours of the Queen Nefertiti Tomb domain in High Fidelity. These tours have proven so popular that HiFi has extended them through March!

Drax Takes On Decentraland

Honestly, Draxtor Despres has got to be one of the hardest-working people in the metaverse! He tirelessly churns out videos in both Second Life and Sansar, including The Drax Files: World Makers series of profiles of Second Life creators, the popular Atlas Hopping in Sansar series, and a long-running podcast called The Drax Files Radio Hour (co-hosted with Jo Yardley). His most recent work is the Love Made in Second Life series, profiling real-life couples who originally met in SL (here’s a link to episode one).

In the most recent Drax Files Radio Hour show, titled So What About Decentraland? Drax conducts a telephone interview with Nicolas Earnshaw from the Decentraland product team, and he certainly does not shy away from some tough questions! (You can almost hear Nicolas squirm at times.) It’s a rather refreshing change from some of the recent mainstream press coverage of Decentraland, which has tended to rely on things such as this highly-misleading promotional video:

Among other pointed questions, he asks Nicolas how much money Decentraland has made so far (something Nicolas struggles to answer), and how Decentraland plans to move from hosting and controlling their platform on their own servers to a distributed, self-governing structure in the future. (I personally have my doubts that this will happen as seamlessly as predicted. To date, no virtual world has attempted to transfer operating control in this fashion.)

Here’s a link to the 50-minute podcast if you are interested. (Because this is a telephone interview, the sound quality is a bit poor at times.)