Second Life

SL – Trenton Computer Festival Presentation

Live from The Netherlands: Steorling Heron!

4/8/11 – Making Music in Second Life: SL and the 21st Century Musician (presented at TCF 2011)

“Isn’t Second Life dead?” – That was the question posed (somewhat sarcastically) by a woman who was still in the room from the previous workshop this past Saturday at the Trenton Computer Festival. I didn’t mind the question so much, but it got us off on a rocky start, and she didn’t even stick around to discuss the question.

Steorling Heron joined me live for the intro to demonstrate in-world voice chat. She just happened to be in The Netherlands visiting friends that she met in SL. We experienced some lag and choppiness with her voice, but things improved as the presentation continued. After discussing some of my key points about sound card and mixer setup, I returned to Steorling for a streaming audio demo using some prerecorded music.

One attendee was familiar with SL but hadn’t logged in for a while, which led to more discussion about whether or not SL is dead. One guy was an intellectual property lawyer who was curious about my comment that SL is very “Wild West” when it comes to performing rights. A few other people were familiar with SL, but not very much. Two people walked out midway. They said they came for music, and apparently there wasn’t enough to hold their interest. Admittedly, it was a somewhat technical talk, so I can’t blame them.

Near the end we talked about the silliness of shopping in SL, and the way buildings and objects are still tied to representations of objects in the physical world – even when they are unnecessary. (For example, having to “walk” to the second floor of a structure to buy an audio stream – see pictures below.) Steorling noted that this is necessary for some people in order to provide a familiar environment to interact. I don’t doubt that, but for shopping it is tedious at best.

During the final Q&A, I asked Steorling to answer the “SL dead?” question from her perspective. From what she sees, the answer is certainly “no”. There is still a lot of activity, but it is often among the hard-core users. She also pointed out that many technical issues remain, and Linden Labs has been slacking in terms of addressing them.

Any fascination or interest that I had with SL – and I’ve always been conflicted about it – more or less wore off this weekend. Between dealing with dishonest stream vendors, and people’s skepticism, I just do not have the energy to evangelize for the platform. It’s particularly difficult with all of the “real life” stuff I need to do. Few people I’ve ever met – unless they were in-world already – took SL seriously or understood its potential. So for now anyway, Thaylon will be on hiatus, and remains perhaps nothing more than a resume builder.

Here’s the handouts. Streaming.pdf

The presentation (along with others from TCF 2011) can be found here:

or directly:

Shopping for a stream... what I need is on the second floor... are they serious? I thought this was virtual?
I have to go up there?
Second Life

SL – Second Life and the Adventures of Thaylon Singh

Phorkyad (L) and Thaylon (R)

1/8/2011 – Visit my writing site to see my ethnography about my early SL experiences.

See also: Thaylon’s Subscrib-o-matic Feed

Second Life

SL – Greek Theatre Reopening

On December 18, 2010 the Greek Theatre celebrated its reopening (or re-rezzing) by Jenene Lemaire and Talliver Hartnell at the London School of Journalism. (Special thanks to Jilly Kidd for her generous land grant). The lineup included music and poetry by Thaylon Singh, Phorkyad Acropolis, Singh Albatross, Morgue McMillan and Avery Oxhall.

Singh Albatross struts in on his horse!
Singh Albatross performs

Second Life

SL – Muse of Fire Chaos on the rise

October 23, 2010 –  Another support show for the CD. In a bizarre twist of virtual vs. “real”, Phorkyad surprised me with some Second Life t-shirts for the “Chaos Rise Up” gigs. Later, these shirts would be available in real life via Cafe Press. Artwork by Smiling Otis designs.

Virtual T-shirts!
Thaylon sporting his pilot outfit.
Second Life

SL – Muse of Fire Chaos is approaching

On Oct 9, 2010 – With the help of Thaylon, Chaos begins to Rise Up in support of the new album. Thanks to all the Creepy Girls who came out to support the show, including Megh, Morgue and Steorling.

Megh as a Creepy GIrl
Morgue as a Creepy Girl
Steorling looks pissed, not creepy.

A pensive Steorling Heron

Second Life

SL – Muse of Fire September Performance

Thaylon and Phorkyad

Saturday, September 25th, 2010 – Thaylon Singh performing the song “Organ Harvest” while Phorkyad gets his chainsaw running. It’s all fun and games until someone loses an organ.

Hear a sample of the album version on the Chaos Rise Up album page.

Blog Electro Second Life

Electro-Music 2010 Second Life Conference Handouts

Sunday, September 12th, 2010 – Thanks to all who attended my Second Life workshop at the electro-music 2010 festival. Here’s the handouts. Streaming.pdf

Second Life

SL – Muse of Fire Performance – New Look

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010 – Thanks to some donations from Phorkyad and earnings from gigs, he also got some new threads and body/facial textures.

Muse of Fire from a distance
Thaylon sporting new clothes and Martin guitar

Second Life

SL – Muse of Fire – Aliens and Cows

Thaylon performing his UFO song

Thursday, August 12th, 2010 – After a significant break away from Second Life, Thaylon returned in August 2010 to begin promotion of Jeremy’s new album “Chaos Rise Up“. On Aug 12, Thaylon joined Phorkyad for an evening of music and poetry. Here, the Alien Cow Abduction Craft (ACAC) is seen hovering over the stage while Thaylon performs “Saw It With My Own Two Eyes” a song about the plight of the dairy farmer as a victim of UFO abduction.

Second Life

SL – Thaylon Returns

Tuesday, July 27th, 2010 – Thaylon Singh will be assisting me with a presentation at this year’s Electro-Music festival. The electro-music festival, known as the “Woodstock of electronic music,” is the world’s premiere event for experimental electronic music.

This year’s event features three mind-bending days of innovative electronic music concerts, seminars, workshops, demonstrations, jam sessions, video art, a laptop battle, and a swap-meet. Action starts at 12 noon on Friday, September 10 and runs until after midnight on September 12. Musical activities will be running continuously throughout the three days of the festival.

electro-music 2010 takes place at the Greenkill Retreat Center in Huguenot, New York. On-site lodging and meals are available. A wide variety of instruments and musical styles will be represented, ranging from theremin to analog modular synthesizers to home made devices, from classic space music to abstract electronica to world beats.