Friday, June 29, 2007

First Life Thoughts On Second Life

Over the last week or so I've been living virtually in Second Life. As a devout MySpace user, and fan of Web 2.0 technology in general, I have to say that I'm pretty impressed by what I've experienced so far. I know Second Life (SL) has drawn it's fair share of criticisms in the past, but as a 'newbie' I'm particularly impressed by the overall possibilities of the platform. So far I've bought a motorbike, got a haircut, bought clothes, travelled to many great (and many not so great) places, danced, chatted, and met some interesting characters.

One of the most interesting and exciting things I got to do was to hang out (something you can never do on MySpace) at the SkyNews studio, and watch an interview being conducted in real life with (then) British Environment secretary David Miliband. The interview was being broadcast on SkyNews live, where people could watch on the tv, and also being streamed in SL where we could ask questions of David. It was fascinating to be a part of it.

The thing I've found most interesting about it all is how on the one hand it really tries to mimick real life in as close a way as possible - but on the other hand it's residents vigorously separate their real and second lives. So much so that it is even perceived as hostile to broach the subject of real life. When I was a student at the Jan van Eyck Akademie I worked on creating virtual environments and also worked with Marion Delhees on the creation of a virtual avatar interaction prject (which we're in the process of resurrecting 10 yeas later...), but they always seemed so cold and mechanical in comparison to SL. In a weird way SL has the warmth of a friendship without the coldness of the technology. this might be a stretch to describe it this way (especially as the SL platform is full of bugs), but it seems much more of an emotional experience than a 'virtual' one. the term virtual always seemed so cold to me. I'm fascinated by how it seems to very accurately mirror the emotional aspects of real life, something I've never really experienced online before - it resembles playing a game, but the people on the other end talking to you are real, but they actually FEEL and LOOK real. It's a little disconcerting at first, but as I've become more accustomed to SL it's something that you just naturally begin to accept, it's a very weird feeling. Baudrillard would love it I'm sure. I've seen the simulation of genuine tenderness, aggression (and learned the word 'griefer' along the way), humor and what appears to be actual, 'real' friendship. Is it sinister and creepy? A bit, but I think the ideas and thoughts being thrown up by the possibilites of connecting people this way are incredible.

I've met people who are couples in SL but live on opposite sides of the globe in RL, and the idea of 'partnering' that SL has seems amazing to me, as I dont think I could ever really separate SL and RL in such cold a way as this. I guess these are the rambling thoughts of a newbie, but I after some years of resisting getting involved with this, my disillusion with MySpace (I'm just getting bored with it at the moment, as are the millions migrating to FaceBook apparently) has led me to seek a richer, deeper (and I guess ultimately not browser-based) online experience, and I think SL fulfills that. I'm actually looking forward to being able to make things within the world (at the moment I've just spent my time exploring and learning it all), as a means of creative outlet.

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Monday, June 25, 2007

Inner City Pressure

Friday, June 22, 2007

My Hero

Crispin Jones, long-time friend from the Kingston University days, and his memories of 1989's Arsenal League win. Priceless.

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Monday, June 18, 2007

Just Completed: Heart Of Gold Website

Just completed www.heartofgoldnj.comfor our family-based local jewelry store in Randolph, New Jersey.

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The New (And Future) Media Reality (?)

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Recently Designed: July Fourth EP Cover Artwork

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Speed Of Dark Blog Mentions Algorithm

Indie music blog Speed Of Dark has a review of July Fourth's 'Curtain Of Stars' EP which I did the album cover artwork for. Nice shout out to Algorithm on the design work and mention of the previous Film School projects, enjoy.

Read A Curtain Of Stars

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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Yet More Algorithm

Saturday, June 09, 2007

"Day In... Day Out" (Joy Division: 'Digital')

Friday, June 08, 2007


Sunday, June 03, 2007

Recently Updated:, Algorithm's close collaborator, has just undergone a massive content and interactive functionality overhaul. Aside from the additional pages of photography (of which there are many), interactive maps from WikiMapia have been added, as well as interactive slideshows, industry links, contact forms and many other items.

Visit Tiger-Fly

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