444 Experiences And Counting…

Sin's Name Tag for Ryan Schultz 1 August 2017

Another day and another nametag!  This one I am wearing in the photo above was created by Sin, thank you so much for making this for me!  I now have a nametag for every possible outfit 🙂

Since Linden Lab opened the doors of Sansar to the general public on Monday, July 31st, the number of experiences published in the Atlas has increased dramatically.  This morning I did a quick count and I came up with 444 experiences in total!  Since each experience can potentially be as large as 4 km by 4 km by 4 km, that’s a LOT of virtual real estate already!  It’s wonderful to see so many people hopping right into virtual world building.

Every day in the Sansar Newsblog I plan to highlight one particularly noteworthy experience in my Pick of the Day post.  Yesterday was my first pick, the NASA Apollo Museum and Moonscape by LOOT Interactive.

In addition, every day I will post a picture of a different experience that evokes a particular atmosphere in my Scene of the Day.  Yesterday, my first scene was a serene shot of Maxwell Graf’s experience, Respite.

Starting from today, I will also be keeping an eye on the Sansar Store, and alerting people to various items that I think are especially interesting, decorative or worthwhile.  I’ll be keeping an eagle eye out for any freebies and special deals so you can snap them up for your own experiences!

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Claiming an Identity in Sansar

Snow Made Me A Name Tag 1 August 2017

I’d like to thank, from the bottom of my heart, Mark Gibson (Snow) who created this lovely nametag for my avatar to proudly wear in-world!  Avatar attachments were one of the new features that only just became available in the latest release of the Sansar software, and many people have been using it with a high degree of skill already, creating things such as sunglasses, hats, beards…. and nametags!  I’ve even seen some clever avatars with their names perched over their heads, just like in Second Life!

Which brings me to my topic of expressing avatar user identity.  During the first six months of the closed beta, we beta testers often complained to Linden lab that we needed a way to identify each other. It was seen as especially important at a time when avatar customization options were extremely few (just a few basic types to choose from).  Picture a half-dozen identical brown-haired men in blue blazers, all asking each other who they are!!  Linden Lab listened to our complaints, and replied that they wanted to avoid a situation where everybody’s name was stuck over their heads, as it would break immersion (a valid point).

LL’s solution to this, so far, has been to include a feature where (when you are in a VR headset with hand controllers), you can press the secondary index trigger on the hand controller and the name of the avatar you are staring at will appear superimposed on that character.  It’s a start, a good start but only a start.  There still is no solution for non-VR-headset users, other than using the Nearby feature in local chat to see who is around you.  You have to pay attention to the visual and audio cues, and watch to see whose lips are moving!  Being able to integrate user identity functions in an unobtrusive but unambiguous way is going to be one of the major challenges moving forward for Linden Lab, and for developers of many other social virtual worlds.

Pick of the Day: NASA Apollo Museum

Apollo Moon Landing Exhibit Ryan Sansar 1 August 2017

Today I was part of a team of people who went into one of the most exciting new experiences in Sansar, the NASA Apollo Museum and Moonscape.  The purpose of this visit was to allow Draxtor Despres to film a promotional video for Sansar.  This new virtual exhibit hall, which was created by a company named LOOT Interactive, was first presented at The Art Of VR event at Sotheby’s in New York in June.  It is now open to the public via Sansar.

At the entrance, visitors can watch a full-length movie outlining the U.S. space race to the Moon, trace the path of the Apollo 11 astronauts, and explore lifesize models of the Saturn V rocket, Command Module and the Lunar Module.  You can even teleport to the surface of the Moon!

Apollo Moon Landing Astronauts Waving 2 Sansar 1 August 2017

The Apollo Moon Museum is Sansar Newsblog’s Pick of the Day, please drop by for a visit.  You can easily find it in the Sansar Atlas, it’s listed right near the top, or you can just use this URL to get there directly: https://atlas.sansar.com/experiences/lootinteractive/nasa-apollo-museum