April 30, 2007

Project Open Letter

Posted in Catt's Ramblings at 12:41 pm by Catt

There are probably very few blogs today that are not talking about Project Open Letter.  This is a very thoughtful and intelligent letter put together by Cristiano Midnight to Linden Labs.  There is no chest thumping, threats, or other histrionics in this letter and it is one of the reasons I decided to add my own voice.

I leave it to you to take the time to read the letter, read the about section, and decide for yourself if this is something you wish to add your own name too. 

I am on the fence as to whether or not Linden Labs will acknowledge its existence. I am one of the people who believe that LL is actively trying to fix some of the issues we have.  They would be foolish not to. 

Part of the reason for Project Open Letter is the lack of communication between the community and LL. And yes that is definitely an issue, especially considering how much communication there was. You have to realise though that level of communication is unsual in the industry.  Also look at it this way, how can you get any kind of intelligent discourse going with your user base when they spend 50% of the time yelling at you for not fixing the bugs and the other 50% of the time yelling at you for regular updates and Wednesday downtime.

A larger part of the reason behind the open letter is, of course, the issues themselves.

I am not trying to downplay the issues we are all experiencing in some form or another.

ok now I have that out of the way 🙂 Many, if not all, of the issues mentioned in this letter we have had for as long as I have been in SL, and my husband before me.  He started 2004, I started 2005.  The problems have of course increased exponentially with the increased number of residents.  Its a scalability issue.

Now here’s the crunch, SL is an incredibly complex beast, but it just might not have the functional base required for the size it has become.  It may not be possible to fix the scalability problems without a complete rewrite

I can just see it now… “this Wednesday we will be bringing SL down for an update.  It will be available again in 12-18 months. Thank you for your patience”

Well ok maybe not 😀

But you know, regardless of the problems we can lay at Linden Labs feet we, the residents of SL, are not entirely blameless.  As I said above SL is a complex beast, there is no way that a coder can be 100% sure about all of the systems touched by that tiny piece of code he/she just changed.  Thats what QA/testing is for.  But again SL is a very complex beast.  A QA specialist, no matter how well they know the system, cannot put it under the same level of stress as the residents do.  And that’s what the beta grid is for.  And how many of us actually use the beta grid, hmmm?  And of those how many would actually log bug reports?  Or give LL any kind of feedback?

I could follow those statements with my own thoughts on it, but in general the SL population is fairly intelligent, I think you can work it out for yourself 🙂

We all want SL to succeed.  Lets do our little bit as well.  Hey it doesnt have to be all work

– organise some beta grid parties

– have beta grid fashion shows (in fact that’d be perfect, after all a lot less lag 🙂 )

– run beta grid competitions (first person to identify all the changes in this test release)

Just to name a few ideas, and then bug report our little hearts out.  Believe it or not, LL does want to know.

Well for what was going to be a super quick blog about Project Open Letter ran on for a bit ::blushes:: I guess I got carried away.  But I want SL to succeed as much as everyone else, you know?


April 23, 2007

Life, the universe and….. what?!?!?!?

Posted in Catt's Ramblings at 3:16 pm by Catt

RL has been interfering recently, some in a good way, some in a bad, but with the same basic result.  I usually only have enough time in the evening to log on and deal with any of those wonderful issues that come up with any SL business, then its back out to RL again ::sighs::

I do have some new swimsuits that I’ve managed to throw together and a couple more colours in the last set of tops I released (I forgot to take photo’s of them).  As I get time I’ll take photo’s and get them up.  Maybe.  I’m thinking I need to user test these swimsuits first because I am really not sure if I want to release them – lol.

!! WARNING – rant and long posting follows!!

The rest of my post is only about SL in a kind of round-about way and is pretty much a rambling rant so I’ll understand if you dont want to read any more.  Yup, understand completely, the door’s that way 😀

ok so I have a strange sense of humor.  But this story did not touch any funny bones for me. I have been struggling to understand the response to this action, and before you knee jerk just blame it on the fact they are Americans, stop and think about how things are going in your country…. I’m sure you’ll see a similarity.  And no I am not an American so you can stick that thought to.

Humanity has always had prejudices, probably from the day we were able to put conscience thought together.  Once upon a time the world was a very big place with lots of scary things that jump out of the dark and ate you.  A certain amount of paranoia and distrust was expected.  If someone was “different” you never could be sure they weren’t the ones out there in the dark.

But the world is a much smaller place now. In today’s society media, whether it be radio, tv or the internet, has made it that way.  Our world neighbours are just around the block.  As far as I’m concerned (and yes I’m a cynical b***h) there is no excuse for pleading ignorance except pure and simple laziness.

Now let me quote from the article I linked to above…

“The foot-washing proposal sprang from an incident last year when a Muslim student slipped and hit her head while trying to wash her feet in a sink in a bathroom”


“There was also the potential hazard of slippery floors for other MCTC students because of the water that spilled on the floor .”

The school decided to install foot baths because of the safety issue. Now I think they were pretty naive when they were caught by surprise by the amount of hate mail they received, religion has always been one of those things that humans just lovvvve to fight over.  But I can certainly understand the decision they made.  I mean come on, kids were hurting themselves.

Anyway, it is the following level of ignorance, found on a discussion board, that I find there is no excuse for.  And I’d like to add this was the nicest, most tolerant things said.

“They could clean their feet with wet wipes. Special foot washes are not necessary.”

I’d love to say it was an isolated discussion as well but a quick google search proves me wrong.  I don’t have a very high opinion of basic human nature but still it disappoints me every time I hear of these types of things.  Its not unexpected really, but still disappointing.

Now I’m no saint, and I wont say that I don’t have prejudices, because I know I do.  However, on a one on one basis I don’t give a flying if you are white, black, pink or green or if you worship God or the great pumpkin in the sky.  What I care about is who you are.  Do you treat others well or are you just a dick.  Are you so set in your beliefs that you are unwilling to listen to anyone else’s opinion, you know the type, arrogant, self centered, I am God and my opinion is the only right one know-it-alls.  ::grins:: Told you I had prejudices. 

If you weigh in on the obnoxious side that I’m not going to like you.  And yes its that black and white. Prove to me you are capable of some of the nicer sides of human nature and we’ll get on fine, otherwise take a hike before I find something nice and pointy to send you on your way with.

As with the first article above, explain to me why installing foot baths is such a problem.  I’ll listen, I may not agree but I’m willing to listen.  But it had better be a sensible, educated answer.  I don’t accept ignorance in any form.  Hey I never said I was a nice person 😀

I said that this rant applies to SL in a round-about way.  And here’s how.  I see SL as a squished up version of the world.  If you took every person, culture, religion, and country in the world and squeezed it down to its elemental parts and then dropped that into a teeny tiny virtual environment then added anonymity to the mix…  well welcome to SL 🙂

It seems to display the extremes, the absolute best, and the absolute worse of what I like to call basic human nature.  You see things like residents banding together to raise money to replace land lost to a landbot, and all of the charity work done by so many of SL’s designers, like Relay for life, Bandanna day and the Dreams Community

Then you see residents banding together to save the worldfrom things like age play (after all if you have a child avi you must be a pervert right?), unverified accounts (omg I could be having sex with a teenager!) , campers (its all their fault the world was stable and lag free before they turned up!) and other sensible, well thought out, non-knee-jerk reactions like that.  Hmm those were probably bad examples as there is some small but legitimate possibility of concern with each of those issues.

Well how about reselling of freebies, textures and copybot created content.  This perfectly shows the something for nothing, the world owes me attitude so prevalent in today’s “modern” society.

In general SL is what you make of it, griefers aside, but you can certainly understand why so many college/university students are using SL as the basis of their thesis on human behaviour 😀

On that note, this is a rant, its not supposed to necessarily make sense and its not supposed to come to any sensible conclusions/answers.  And I believe this little post has definitely upheld the spirit of “the rant”  :p

April 9, 2007

Back to the grind

Posted in Casual Wear at 10:51 pm by Catt

I’m back from vacation and man I think I need another vacation to recover from my vacation! And that’s a lot of the word vacation in one sentence 😀

I am slowly getting back into it but first on my agenda was getting the new tops out. They are now available in my main store. Available in 6 colours and in a mega pack, it includes the top on the jacket layer, the shirt layer and what I’m calling the “short” layer 🙂

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April 3, 2007

Vacation time!!!!!!!!!

Posted in Catt's Ramblings at 8:26 pm by Catt

Yes its true, I’m taking a vacation. I will be gone until Monday 9th so if you need assistance in world please leave me an IM, if I cant get to my email (not sure yet if I will be able to) I’ll certainly look you up when I return.

I have moved my store up to 600m and rebuilt so if you are bored, wander on over and have a look. Its my first build totally by myself and I think it came out pretty well. Oh there’s a few issues with textures but they are seriously minor and you’ll only notice if you go looking for them. So don’t go looking for them! 😀

I didn’t get time to release my new top before leaving so here is a sneak preview, something to look forward to 🙂 lots and lots of colours coming in this one to!