Archive for Autumn

Can we haz Open Space?

Posted in Op/Ed with tags , , , , on October 29, 2008 by Autumn

OSS ’08! So did you guys hear the news? The Lindens, in their infinite wisdom, are going to increase prices on open space sims (formerly known as void sims) beginning in January. With no grandfather clause for early adopters. Now, before we get into the whole ‘These sims are over-used and abused’ debate, consider this, why would Linden Labs have increased the prim limits back in March, couldn’t they have predicted that people would be using them to their maximum capacity?

Opening my shop on my own sim has always been my dream, and having an Open Space Sim made that possible. OSS’s made a sort of middle class in SL, a place for medium-sized shops to have their own place, private and not lagged like the mainland, but a lot more affordable than a regular sim. I was so excited to have my own place, I could control the terrain, the decor, I got to make my own decisions about what I wanted to do and where everything could go. I didn’t have to worry about crappy neighbours building giant malls beside me or strangers having slexx on my front lawn. Almost everyone I know wants privacy and the power to control the sim, restarting it if it’s laggy, changing terrain, controlling the time of day. It’s going to be hard to go back to the mainland for a lot of people I’m sure.

I am on an open space sim, I am current using around 1300 prims, with a very few scripts, I checked my top scripts, all from Botanical, so that puts rest to the idea that OSS’s were made to be garden sims. I have box vendors, with no scripts in them. A box puts less strain on the server than a sculpted prim. I would consider my sim to be a very ‘light use’ sim. I don’t often have more than 3 people at one time on my sim, and usually it’s just me, hanging out on my platform in the sky.
I know that there are quite a few people ‘abusing’ the intended usage of these sims, but the Lindens were overly vague in their intended usage definition. To me, my sim is light use, but I don’t know if LL would consider it light or heavy usage. I also really wonder what suddenly motivates a pricing change, and exactly how that’s going to make people limit their use of OSS. Other than the obvious choice of giving them up entirely.

There is already a huge uproar about this issue, and several people have summed up their feelings quite eloquently. There is a flickr group and even a jira (a quite popular one I might add) about this issue. I worry though, that it’s all for nothing as Linden Labs is not exactly well known for catering to even it’s highest paying customers. There was a big backlash against voice too, and look where we are now.

Annyka Bekkers has a theory that Linden Labs is trying to get rid of the OSS’s all together, since nobody will want to buy a new one. Even if the majority of people keep the sim they’re on (which is unlikely with a 66% price increase with 0 added benefits), there will be tons of them abandoned and very very very few new ones purchased, if any from the Lindens. Is this the way of the future? Mainland or Full Sims for shop owners? Was this the plan all along from the Lindens? What happens to places like Appearance Mode or Club Seven, or Filos (the poser’s sim) all on Open Space Sims.

As for me, I’m sad that I probably won’t be able to keep my island for myself, I don’t want to give up my first real (to me anyway) home for my shop. But I don’t want to abuse the system either. I have plans in place to keep the shop going on a full private sim with another shop, and while I think that will work well for both of us, not everyone can afford that option. And after having a taste of privacy, how many people are going to be willing to share?

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How Much is Too Much?

Posted in SecondLife®, SL® Fashion with tags , , , , on October 10, 2008 by Rosie Shark

Autumn Says: The other day I was innocently scrolling through Plurk when I saw one from Willow, saying how she was lusting after an outfit. I looked at the photo and ohhh yes, it was lovely. I fell in slove immediately. Until Willis pointed out the price. $3999L for that? Really…? Surely there must be a mistake. Newp!

Willow Says: I saw the Abyss Doll and immediately fell for it, I don’t know why… well I do, it’s gorgeous!

Rosie says: I love Abyss. I do. The skins are among my top choices and I willingly pay whatever the asking price is for them! That being said, I don’t have all that many of them.

Willow says: I don’t mind paying the earth for things in SL, anyone that knows me… knows that. But also, anyone that knows me knows that if I want something… I usually procrastinate for a while and then give in, which GAH… I did! I tell you it was peer pressure, I was just happy to visit the Doll’s and stroke my screen lovingly until *someone* went ahead and bought one and then the whole chain just collapsed, dammit!

Autumn Says: I should have known I’d have regrets when I didn’t buy it on the first trip, or the fifth. It made me think about last Halloween and another had-to-have item. Last year Starley Thereian of Celestial Studios and Ginny Talamasca of Last Call did a Halloween collaboration. Called “The Halloween Enchantress” it came with 5 skins, 3 skirt options, 4 hair colours, 2 pairs of shoes, and a bazillion accessories. For $2500L. Not to mention they sold parts separately too.

Rosie Says: I’m a sucker for mega packs and limited releases like the one Autumn mentioned, in addition to others like Sea Nymph and Lucidique (wtf, 10k?!)… I love everything about these special packs and costumes that come up for holidays or whenever!

Rosie Says: Meet Sorrow, Magic, and Mystery… three of the most beautiful and sparkling lil av-dolls you will ever want.

Autumn Says: The skin, shape, outfit, hair and some accessories… for L$3999. I kept mulling that price over in my head. Yes, I realize that $15 USD is about the going rate of one gallon of gas nowadays, but still! I caved. I am a weak person and I have no willpower.

Rosie Says: Now, before anyone cries hooey… what you need to know is that I did ask the questions. I wanted to know the thought process by which the designers behind Abyss used to determine a fair price, one that is in line with the market in SL. My curiosity is sparked. And what is it that makes us want something when we truly believe that the asking price is too much?

I did not get a response. So, there.

Willow Says: When I eventually settled on one I immediately felt that I’d bought the wrong one… but there’s no way I can justify buying two of these, not with more awesome releases just around the corner (no doubt). But nevermind, it’s done… remorse won’t help me.

I pop it on and immediately put my shape on, I can’t do other shapes for more than 5 seconds, it makes me unreasonably cranky. So that’s already one piece I won’t ever wear… remorse sets in slightly more…. Then I noticed a texture glitch which is no biggy.. right? Well it kinda IS a biggy cos the stockings are no mod, and if I want to wear my skirt without the pantaloons, I have to live with it, which yes in the grand scheme of life isn’t a huge deal, but for the price it’s a bit irritating.

Autumn Says: It’s not that I don’t like the Marionette Av. I like it a lot, I just can’t get over the fact that I don’t really feel like it was worth it. All of it is no mod – you can modify it through a menu system, but frankly it takes about 3 times as long that way and doesn’t work as well. I spent at least 20 minutes trying to adjust part of the prim pantaloons to no avail.

Willow Says: I don’t regret buying the set (much), I wish there were more options… I wish you could buy the hair colours separately, or the skins perhaps… It was such a pain in the ass deciding which colour hair, and all the sets have different bits, blah!

Rosie Says: We can’t always help ourselves. Gawking at a thing of beauty, holding ourselves back from clicking ‘buy’. The first trip, or 4, we merely observed. Dumbfounded that the actual price would set me back nearly 4 Venti Vanilla Mochas, I was paralyzed. Ok, maybe not ventis, more like grandes.

Autumn Says: Also, there are some flaws, as Willow mentioned, minor possibly, but they are there, and again, I expect perfection if I’m spending enough to buy myself a trip to the movies. I do like it, but I don’t think I’d buy it again, and I definitely won’t be buying the other marionettes (apparently there are more on the way too). That is unless Willis and Rosie talk me into it….

Willow Says: My plea to designers out there is that if you’re going to do AV’s like this, can we at least have one or two hair colours in the pack? If there is an emo skin can we please have a regular and vice versa? If you don’t want to add more to the sets, could we at least have the option to buy a few of the bits separately? I would have loved the Pearls from one of the sets with mine, but I really can’t spend $L4k just for some pearls that I might wear once in a while! Maybe a few demos of the bits that matter, hairs… skins… etc?

I think SL has to be all about options to cater for the masses, and I love options. I just wish there were more 😦 Give us small bits and lots of them, we’d have probably spent twice that without even realising and had all the hair colours in the WORLD!

Rosie Says: No kidding! I think I’d have been in there clickity-click-clicking without realizing I was sinking into the ‘abyss’.

Haughty by Nature?

Posted in SecondLife®, SL® Fashion with tags on September 18, 2008 by Autumn

Second Life fashion, we all know it, we all love it, and we all love to hate it. However, do you feel like you are “educated” enough to be shopping? Do you there behind the computer screen, really *know* fashion? Hmm? Yes, I thought not. But fear not, for there are an exclusive few that are here to drag you from the depths of your fashion ignorance: haughty SL fashion designers that are better than you. It gets even better for you, my friends, because these designers base their content on copying those from RL designers’.

Now, call me crazy, but I thought the whole purpose of fashion was to be innovative? To be daring and bold, shocking even. I don’t think directly copying a RL designer’s vision is daring; it’s boring and staid. We’ve seen it done over and over again in SL, and usually by people who have such holier-than-thou attitudes. I don’t get that attitude at all in RL or SL, but especially not in SL. I’m sorry, but last time I checked we’re all sitting at a COMPUTER of some sort. How cool can a computer nerd really be? In a world where physical beauty and personal wealth means nothing, your personality and attitude are what shine through. So what is up with that I’m-so-much-better-than-you persona? Is it real, or is it a facade they put on to seem cooler? Or, do they just believe their own hype?

I assume most of us read fashion planet, or some sort of blog feed (after all, this is a blog). Are you content to just sit back and buy whatever scrolls across that looks new? Admittedly, I must have 17 bazillion babydoll dresses in my inventory. But sometimes I see something cute that I *must have* even though I wear maybe… 10% of what I own. Are designers really trying to educate us with the same old crotch prim that’s been done again and again?

In SL, we’re able to do whatever, wear whatever, be whatever we want, so why aren’t there more designers making out-of-the-ordinary outfits? I love when designers push the envelope, it might not be something we wear every day, but you know you have that perfectly outlandish, yet beautiful dress waiting, should you need it. To me, that’s true ‘educative’ fashion, not mass producing whatever you see on the runway.

Of course, there is something to be said for the basic wardrobe staples; I know I love a great tank and jeans in both lives. But, even that can be changed up with some new funky colours, a different cut along the shoulders, a sculpted prim baggy look etc. There are SO manythings we could do with SL, and I’d love to see more people get into designing crazy things.
So, please designers! Impress us, shock us, EDUCATE US, just don’t bore us.