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Second Life, Part 01

So I finally visited Second Life. At first I thought it was a lot of hype, but now I see some potential. So far I spent 2 nights trying to experience what hundreds of other avatars find interesting about this site. To me, it mimmicks a 3D version of the SIMS game, except you could build, design, sell or buy anything you desire. You can lease out space and design and build a space. The other difference is that instead of pre-programmed algorithms, you meet people in real-time, and can teleport or fly to over 2,000 locations.
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There are set last names, so if you think you could be a celebrity, and claim Tom Cruise's or Lucy Liu's names, you can't because they already have pre-set last names. For membership of $6.00 a month, you receive a $300 Linden allowance (Linden is the currency of Second Life). You can use this money to buy land or cigarettes.
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So on the first day of sign up, I spent most of my time designing my outfit, and creating my avatar. As you can see from the photos above, you can choose a generic avatar and modify her later, which is what I did. I chose a long-sleeved black shirt, and A-line skirt that is modest. I don't know where the "city/urban chic" description came from. Some other Second Life member thought I had "cool threads on," which I felt complimented, since I designed my own outfit.

I was trying to get rid of these pigtails for the life of me. I tried deleting templates, and creating new ones. At some point, I wasn't sure if this was a "head tattoo" (description in the SL menu). I asked other people, but nobody really had an answer.

At one time, when I was modifying my identity, some other avatar tackled me, so I ran into the ocean to make changes is my appearance. Some of the settings are very similar to Maya's 3D interface, where you can choose a texture, and then it's color and light settings.

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Some of the textures were high resolution like the grass in this image. I assumed it was a plane, with this texture applied to the plane. Everything looks like a polygon versus a nurb. Some of the houses I've seen had walls with one tile of texture applied to the wall, which looked stretched. Some houses or structures looked more professional in that it had maybe they had higher resolution image files of their texture or they tiled the texture well.
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When I was first born into my Second Life, I was born on an island. Apparently that is also my so-called "home." There was a row of vending machines/advertisements that sold cigarrette. The illustration below shows an example of what I'm talking about.
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I saw this bench, and I wanted to sit in it, but didn't know how.
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After fiddling around with gestures, such as clapping and crying, and expressions of shouting, I quickly got bored, and flew around the island.
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I got a real kick out of flying, but there's no graceful landing. The button asks if you would like to stand up, even though all your bones look broken.
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After flying around on the same island, I found some restricted areas that looked okay from far away, but as you get close, there's an invisible barbed fence that prevents you from going in that direction. Sometimes, my avatar could run into walls, so much for home security.
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In any case, flying was liberating.
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Some houses take time to render, I think these were beach homes forming. Sometimes, the same thing would happen to people, so they are gray, and then after two or three minutes, they formalize with color. I'm also not sure if it's the amount of RAM I have. I had to take a 1gb out of my laptop, so it only had 512mb, which may have been the reason why it lagged.
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Finally, I was tired. If you know anything about how to take the pigtails out, please let me know.

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