Tagged: video

Turner Uses Kaneva For Virtual World Presence

Turner Broadcasting System has signed a one-year deal to use Kaneva to build out virtual-world extensions of its entertainment properties, according to a press release. “The agreement will grant Turner access to Kaneva’s technology and tools to create and use Web communities and Virtual Spaces on the Kaneva Web site and in the virtual world of Kaneva. Each Turner Web Community and corresponding Virtual World space inside Kaneva will be enabled with embedded video players for video streaming of select Turner network content. One of the foregoing Turner Virtual Spaces will be an external space that will link to the other Turner Virtual Spaces, as well as other areas within Kaneva’s Virtual World.”

It’s interesting to see a year-long deal being signed in this way. I’m not sure that’s been done before. Most of the projects we’ve seen so far has been one-offs, or involve the purchase and/or licensing of software.

Full release below: Continue reading

Graph of Second Life’s Feted Inner Core

Graph of Second Life's Feted Inner Core

Virtual worlds researcher Aleks Krotoski, who’s been working on a Ph.D. about social networks in virtual worlds, has posted about some of her findings, which are available in the form of an excellent video presentation you can find at the Subject Centre for Information and Computer Sciences (scroll down). You can also download the accompanying PowerPoint presentation. Aleks is doing very interesting research measuring the ties among people in the virtual world of Second Life, and is farming results from an opt-in survey she made of 10,000 SL residents. What’s to be learned here? According to Aleks, you can discern several things: Continue reading

Go For a Real Run Through the Virtual World

The YouTube video above comes to 3pointD from Birgit Frenzel of I-D Media, whom we last met in Berlin, back when the Lifecrawler team had begun to offer client services in the virtual world of Second Life. The video features some new hacks the German team has apparently been cooking up, including the ability to jog through Second Life via a treadmill, and to steer with the D-pad on a Wiimote, which was hacked up by Gideon May back in March. The video is cool — get fit while navigating the virtual world! — but of course we have to give props to our neighbor in Second Life’s Louise sim, Moriash Moreau, who had the same thing going almost a year ago. Then again, the Lifecrawler one is a bit smoother and not so DIY, but hey, Mori’s a pioneer. The Lifecrawler team has also made good strides (sorry) on the Destroy Television-like technology for which they’re named, which is now working pretty smoothly, judging from this cool YouTube video. 3pointD hears that the Lifecrawler team may soon provide a virtual video streaming service not unlike Ustream that would let any SL resident stream their second lives to the Web. Watch for it.

Destroy TV Directors Cut Now Available

Destroy Television directors cut now available
Ceedubs (in red t-shirt) looks out from the virtual gallery and through the screen, while Destroy, housed in the real version of the virtual kitchen cabinet at center, looks on, and the real CW (not pictured) looks in from outside. Confused? Good.

Electric Sheep Christian Westbrook reports that he has now posted a downloadable series of the adventures of Destroy Television in the virtual world of Second Life. (Downloadable series of enormous files, that is.) Destroy, of course, is the multiuser avatar who lifelogs her every virtual moment on Flickr. But because she’s taking a screenshot every five seconds, ceedubs has been able to cut these all together into a very cool series of short films. The films are taken from the ten days in which Destroy was on display at the Fuse Gallery in New York City, and includes the 683MB monster I’m downloading at the moment — downloading because I want to see how much of our wedding Destroy managed to capture. It sounds all good fun and games, but there’s a serious side to it as well: consider what Destroy’s up to in the context of things like Justin.tv and Ustream. The original plan (not sure if it’s still the plan) was to embed clickable information into Destroy’s home movies, using a service like Click.tv, which seems to be dark at the moment, but which lets you embed links and comments at any point in a video clip, displays them as an overlay on the clip, and lets you click directly to that point. Imagine that kind of digitized information overlaid on your own lifestream, complete with whatever other information was embedded in the environment around you. Second Life constitutes an excellent testbed for that kind of service. Useful? Not at the moment, but it will be.

Can Sky News Rise to Second Life?

Sky News in the virtual world of Second Life

Sky News, the leading satellite news broadcaster in the UK, assisted by brand consultants and SL builders Rivers Run Red, recently launched »an island« in the virtual world of Second Life. The launch event was tied into a broadcast from the Guardian Hay Festival, an annual literary festival held in the picturesque and distinctly bibliophilic town of Hay-on-Wye. Sky News are setting out to be the first real-world television news service to establish a permanent bridgehead in the virtual world, and thus steal a march on their opposition. Until now, UK television news and current affairs programmes have had only sporadic involvement in Second Life, most recently with the broadcast of BBC2‘s “The Money Programme” (also managed by Rivers Run Red).

I understand there were virtual queues of around 700 people trying to gain access to the launch event, which garnered a lot of good press in the blogosphere. However, as I tend to avoid such functions and their attendant lag, I did not venture into the island until much later, once the fuss had died down. To say the site is now quiet is something of an understatement. I have been back a few times, and on each occasion there have been at most 3 or 4 other visitors. Continue reading

Destroy Television Gallery Show Opens Tonight

Destroy Television art show opens with a Metaverse MeetupDon’t miss the Metaverse Meetup this evening at 7pm, where we’ll be back at the Fuse Gallery (93 Second Avenue, between 5th & 6th Streets, through the back of Lit Lounge) for the opening of Destroy Television‘s gallery show, which I blogged up a week or so ago. More information from Jerry in several recent blog posts. Should be a hoot, as usual. See you there.

3D Holographic TV Closer Than You Think?

SeeReal working on holographic televisionHolographic television displays are apparently closer than we thought, according to a company called SeeReal Technologies. They’re developing 3D holographic display techniques that would work on flat LCD screens and would not require special glasses. The system tracks viewers’ eyes and directs output accordingly. For more detail, you can read a good FAQ page on their site. Or show up tomorrow (23 May), at the Society for Information Display’s International Symposium in Long Beach CA, where SeeReal will unveil some of their new tech, according to a press release. Sounds promising. But how does it look?

D-Briefs: Second Life, Little Big Planet, Politics

Two SL videos, an interview with Little Big Planet, and the first presidential campaign to have an official SL presence. I suspect headline-writing is going to be the hardest thing about these D-Briefs I’ve started doing. By the way, does anyone have a “briefs” icon I can use for these? Feel free to send it along. Continue reading

CBS Features Machinima in Upfront Presentation

The Upfronts are the week when television networks show off the season’s upcoming shows to advertisers, hoping to win them over and grab fistfuls of their cash. For that reason, they’re very important, and the networks make sure their presentations are top-notch and designed to entertain. CBS made its showing yesterday afternoon at Carnegie Hall — and kicked it off with a machinima piece (produced by the Electric Sheep Company, sponsors of this blog) showing an avatar of JoAnn Ross, the president of network sales, flying around the virtual world of Second Life, according to Paul LaMonica of CNN/Money (who wasn’t sure it really was SL, apparently). CBS hasn’t posted the video on YouTube yet, but it will apparently be up there eventually, 3pointD hears, though it could take a week or two. The network is definitely taking a brave step into the future with the use of machinima in such a context, but it isn’t yet moving around the present very quickly, it seems. You can look for more good stuff in this vein from CBS, I’d bet. What I like about it is that it’s the kind of thing that will drive adoption of virtual worlds.

Romanian Political Leaders Invited to Second Life

On May 19, Romania will hold a referendum on whether to impeach its suspended president, Traian Basescu, who has been charged with violating the country’s constitution. Before that time, members of the Romanian community in the virtual world of Second Life would like to hear from him and other Romanian political leaders in a virtual venue that’s been built out for the purpose. The two-minute video above provides a tour of a nice build that’s apparently designed to host a debate between real Romanian political leaders, should they care to put in an appearance. The »debate hall« looks fairly accomodating, and comes complete with voting mechanisms and a press room that’s apparently wired to provide television feeds. The video cites 20,000 Romanian Second Life users, and says around 800 a day are visiting the in-world location. Of those polled, 95 percent say they’d like to participate in an electoral meeting in SL. Continue reading

New Second Life Movie Service Premieres Friday

vPods at InWorld Cinema's new cinema in the virtual world of Second Life

Jordan Bigel (aka Second Life‘s Dire Lobo) of metaverse development company InWorld Studios sends along the news that his company is launching a new movie service for the virtual world of Second Life. Set to premiere this Friday, 11 May, the service is known as InWorld Cinema and has some interesting features — and is opening with a full-length feature film. Audience members occupy individual “vPods” and access scenes or chapters within the film via a heads-up display. Tickets cost L$260 (about US$1) and let you spend as much time watching the movie in as many visits as you like over a 48-hour period. Continue reading

Paul Verhoeven to Hold Auditions in Second Life

It seems Dutch director Paul Verhoeven (of such classics as Robocop and Showgirls, but also Soldier of Orange) will use the virtual world of Second Life to audition actors for an upcoming film. According to a press release, radio and television spots are advertising an open call for all those interested in auditioning for Black Book 2, the follow-up to Verhoeven’s popular Black Book. Starting today, “Verhoeven will hold virtual auditions in Second Life.” [Lost in the] Magic Forest, a division of Dutch media production company Revolver that issued the press release, produced a machinima spot being broadcast on Dutch television to promote the auditions (as near as I can tell through what seems to be a language barrier). Continue reading

Destroy Television Returns for NY Art Exhibit

Just when you thought it was safe to watch lifecaster Justin.tv, or broadcast your own life with Ustream, along comes a virtual life you can not only watch on the Web but take part in controlling, a kind of collaborative stream of avatar consciousness — and one that’s going to be on display in a real-world art gallery from May 23 to June 2. Curated by the excellent Annie Ok of the GHava{SL} Center for the Arts in the virtual world of Second Life, the show will be designed by Electric Sheep Jerry Paffendorf and Christian Westbrook, and will involve Destroy Television, the interactive avatar-bot designed as a research project of the Electric Sheep Company, who streams live images of Second Life to her Web site (although that seems to be dark at the moment). Just what form the exhibit will take has yet to be revealed, but the show will take place simultaneously at the Fuse Gallery in New York (at 93 Second Avenue, between Fifth and Sixth Streets), and in SL at the GHava{SL} Center for the Arts, which is run by Annie’s SL self, Xantherus Halberd. Continue reading

Rapid Architectural Prototyping in Second Life

Second Life architect Lordfly Digeridoo has posted a great video of the process of designing a site plan in Second Life for a real-world site in Ypsilanti, Michigan. Because of “massive procrastination,” LF says, he had only a week to do it. His video compresses that week into less than 10 minutes of high-speed SL work, and it’s pretty compelling to watch. There’s even a great sense of suspense in wondering what the finished product will be like. An excellent look at the methods of a master builder.

Second Life Nerds On Now at Nerd of the Week

As Jerry notes, Negin and Kimmy’s latest Nerd of the Week has been posted, this one examining the Second Life Nerd in detail, based on interviews conducted at our latest metaverse meetup with all your favorite Second Lifers. (The interviews are actually interesting, FYI.) If you haven’t seen Nerd of the Week, check it out immediately. Negin and Kimmy turn out to be excellent filmmakers, and their short NOTW episodes are definitely worth your while. And if you’re interested in the metaverse meetups themselves, there’s one happening this Friday in Manhattan, open to all. Read more details here. [UPDATE: Added Revver link so Negin and Kimmy can make some coin from this.]

More on Lifecrawler: Client Services on Offer

I-D Media to offer client services in Second Life
Gideon May, Birgit Frenzel and Dirk Lusebrink (l to r) of I-D Media, the team behind Lifecrawler

Faithful readers may recall the Lifecrawler service I blogged about a couple of weeks ago, which looked like it would give users the chance to put a streaming Second Life window on their Web page. I had the opportunity to meet up with the team behind it while I was in Berlin, and learned a bit more about what’s planned for the service and the company behind it while we hung out surrounded by techie hipsters at the Sankt Oberholz on the edge of Prenzlauerberg. Lifecrawler is the project of a small R&D team within German marketing agency I-D Media who’ve been given more or less free rein to start pushing into the virtual world of Second Life. Though they’re just starting out in the virtual services space, I-D Media plans to leverage the company’s 20-year track record in marketing to bring new and existing clients into the virtual world. Besides the streaming service, the team is also designing a metrics package that will be offered to clients. Continue reading

Read the Design of the Future in Helvetica

Helvetica documentary at SXSW, on the typeface and the way design shapes our livesI’m in the Austin airport on the way back from South by Southwest (my flight of course delayed by snow in New York [and actually, I’m home now]), and I just snapped this vaguely Sesame Street-like picture of the number 18. Not just any 18, though: It’s a Helvetica 18, brought to my attention by a fantastic documentary I saw as part of the SXSW film festival, titled simply Helvetica. The typeface celebrates the 50th anniversary of its design this year, but the film does much more than simply celebrate the typeface — which, if you glance around, you’ll realize has become the ubiquitous choice for “clean” design in the period since the second world war. What’s great about Helvetica (besides the fact that it’s beautifully shot) is that it does a terrific job of illustrating how design shapes our lives and who we are as human beings. And in a remarkably 3pointD twist, the film even winds up talking about Helvetica and design in the context of Web apps like MySpace and how those things contribute to who we are, which is the only reason I even dare blog about it here. Continue reading

Lifecrawler Brings Your Second Life to the Web

Lifecrawler will stream your Second Life activities to a Web site

Lifecrawler is a new service that looks like it will offer residents of the virtual world of Second Life the chance to stream their virtual activities to a Web site, among other things. There’s not a lot of text on the site, so it’s hard to tell exactly how the service will work, but it appears it will offer two components: a window you can drop on your Web site that will stream your SL activities to the Web, and a metrics system that will give you information about visitors to your SL plot of land and what they’ve been getting up to there. All you can do at the moment is sign up for email updates, but it looks like a very interesting service. Continue reading

SXSW Xcript: New Media Goes to the Movies

I came into the panel New Dogs, New Tricks: New Media Goes to the Movies just slightly late, but caught most of it. It looked largely at marketing and promoting films in the new media environment, but didn’t seem to go very far past current services like YouTube and several recent launches represented by the panelists. The MTV rep, however, did venture into the land of new modes of storytelling that new media might make possible.

Moderator: Scott Kirsner from Variety
Panelists:
Rick DeVos from Spout.com:
David Gale of MTV New Media
Scilla Andreen of IndieFlix
Seth Nagel of iKlipz

When I came in, Kirsner was asking about who the new power players would be in the new media space, where long-form downloadable content was concerned.

Rick DeVos from Spout.com didn’t see any big new players in long-form downloadable content. Rick believes in the power of social recommendation and word of mouth to hook up niche filmmakres with niche audiences, which is what Spout is trying to do.

David Gale talked about what he looked at at MTV, which covers everything “from short films to a gaming mechanism. MTV launched the Daily Rage this week, wher the audience can win money in a gamelike mechanism.” They also bought a company recently that takes comic books and graphic novels and turns them into cool new media versions. “There’s a whole opportunity to take what’s been traditional media and turn it into new media. It really opens up another way of telling stories. Film is still its traditional media thing [in terms of MTV’s business]. My division is about taking anything that is not film- or televison-originated and looking at the platform and how you can create things in those mediums.” Continue reading

Sheep Flock to Austin to Stream SXSWi to SL

I hadn’t realized how heavy a presence 3pointD’s sponsors, the Electric Sheep Company, would have at this year’s South by Southwest Interactive conference until I read Jerry’s post yesterday describing what they’re doing here. For one thing, they’re going to stream the Screenburn conference-within-a-conference on games and virtual worlds, at which both Jerry and myself are moderating panels, into the virtual world of Second Life. That’s nice stuff for anyone unable to attend, since it’s (relatively) easy to grab a free Second Life account, teleport over to »Sheep Island«, and watch the fun. The Sheep will also have a booth at the Screenburn expo on Saturday and Sunday, where Adam Pasick, the Second Life correspondent for Reuters (a Sheep client) will be conducting some interviews. Check it out.

At Home With Cruxy: Multi-Platform Media

Nathan Freitas and Jon Oakes of CruxyJust took a nice stroll over to Park Slope from the 3pointCrib to have a chat with Nathan Freitas and Jon Oakes, two of the co-founders of Cruxy, the new(-ish) Web site for independent musicians, filmmakers and other artists to promote and sell their work. (The third co-founder is Web services wizard Will Meyer, who’s based elsewhere.) That’s Nathan on the left (aka Nat Mandelbrot in SL), with his pet AIBO, which, sadly, suffers from the classic symptoms of DHS. I got in touch with them after blogging up their music player for SL, and was happy to hear that they have more cool stuff on the way, and are in fact already working on some things that could make it a lot easier to do media-making not just in a virtual world but on the Web itself, as well as to cross over between the two. For musicians, filmmakers and artists in both the real and virtual worlds, it seems like Cruxy’s versatile player and format could provide a small boon. Continue reading

MovieTickets.com Now Showing in Second Life

MovieTickets.com open island in the virtual world of Second Life

MovieTickets.com has launched an experimental island in the virtual world of Second Life, according to a press release. They’ve built »a huge theater« on their MovieTickets island in Second Life, where you can go to watch trailers of the latest films and click through to the MovieTickets.com page where you can find local showtimes and purchase tickets. The theater build is actually pretty cool, with a spacious lobby and tall screening rooms that make a lot more sense than most of the screening locations I’ve seen in Second Life. I’m not sure there’s huge advantage in going 3D with this service, but MovieTickets apparently has further plans. Continue reading

HBO Comedy Festival Coming to Second Life

HBO’s U.S. Comedy Arts Festival will be coming to the virtual world of Second Life on Thursday, March 1, according to Reuben Steiger over at Millions of Us. Thursday’s event, which will kick off at 2:00pm SL time (5:00pm Eastern), will feature some live streaming audio standup and MCing from emerging talent Hyla Matthews, followed by a streaming video roundup of talent from the festival. The event takes place at HBO’s »Virtual Comedy House« in the Playground region of SL. IM Baccara Millionsofus to RSVP for the event, or email baccararhodes AT gmail.com. Sounds like good fun.

New Episodes From SecondCast, Grid Review

Episode #53 of SecondCast is up on the SecondCast site (or can be listened to in the sidebar here, or downloaded from iTunes), and it’s fairly hilarious right off the bat. Like really hilarious, as in the first three minutes will have you on the floor. And the bleeps! Hear Lordfly file an abuse report against Johnny’s face. Pretty excellent stuff.

When you’re done with that, go check out Episode #1 of the relaunched Grid Review, the machinima news project being produced by Edelman and the Electric Sheep Company (sponsors of this blog). Now benefitting from the Sheep’s absorption of master machinimators the Ill Clan, as well as expert narration from SecondCast’s own Johnny Ming, the Grid Review is suddenly totally entertaining (whereas the old format was only somewhat entertaining in its own format, if you ask me, despite the presence of some great machinimators). Let’s hope they can keep it up.

Rocky Horror in Second Life, March 1

Rocky Horror Picture Show to screen in the virtual world of Second LifeFinally! I’ve long thought the Rocky Horror Picture Show would be the perfect film to screen in the virtual world of Second Life. After all, it’s the original weird costumed participatory media experience, filled with sex, mad scientists and terrorized newbies — just like SL! Well, start working on your Frank N. Furter avatars, because the Pirate Cinema in Stockholm, Sweden (I think this is the link), is holding a Rocky Horror Picture Show Second Life-a-long that will pair a real-world screening with one in the virtual world.

The event is being held in collaboration with architecture students at Stockholm’s Royal Institute of Technology, who are billing it as “a night in the spirit of Piracy and architecture, an attempt to destroy the firewall between the physical and virtual, to create a fellowship without limits.” The film starts Thursday, March 1, at noon SL time, in »The Office region« of SL.

The great thing about it is that the real-life screening will be streamed into the virtual world. (The SL screening will apparently be streamed to the RL theater as well.) If you’re not a virgin, you know that this means that the SL audience will get to see not only the film itself, but the antics of Sweden’s costumed Rocky Horror fans as they prance and dance onstage, and ask questions and give directions to the actors (which the actors, of course, answer and follow slavishly). One can only imagine what the experience will be like in Second Life. (It would be great to get a regular screening going there to see how the Rocky Horror cult manifests itself in the virtual world.)

Excellent fun.

Sheep Flock to Today Show [Delayed Again]

[UPDATE: Well, that’ll teach me. The Sheep’s appearance on the Today show has not been put off again. Sibley is now scheduled to appear Friday morning. Maybe. I think the next time I blog about this it’ll be after the fact.] The appearance of Sibley Verbeck, CEO of the Electric Sheep Company, on NBC’s Today Show, originally scheduled for last week, has now been rescheduled to this Thursday, March 1. Tune in between 8:00am and 10:00am Eastern (5:00am – 7:00am SL Time) to check him out.

Lifelogging the Living Canvas: Dylan to YouTube

The above YouTube clip, from Minneapolis artist Phil Hansen, doesn’t appear to be all that 3pointD, at first, but appearances can be deceiving. It’s a full five minutes of some really nice action painting with a unique twist (which I won’t give away; hit the Play button already!). In an unbelievably fortuitous moment of technological serendipity, I happened to be listening to Bob Dylan’s Subterranean Homesick Blues on iTunes when I was watching this, and had the YouTube soundtrack turned down. All of which engendered a small epiphany about the history of lifelogging and the origins of the mixed(-up) media we enjoy today. Read on, if you dare. Continue reading

The Metaverse Has Met

So I’m just back from the metaverse meetup and I wouldn’t normally be blogging at this hour, but I’m trying to find out just how I’ve screwed up the site (there’s supposed to be a strip of red buttons just below the header image now; it shows in IE but not Firefox, for some reason), and whether a new post might knock things loose and get it working again. (Don’t laugh; it’s happened.) The meetup was a hoot, with a bunch of geeks packed into the back room of Planet Thailand, as well as a few more-or-less normal people along for the ride. Jerry and I each made presentations from the top of the stair once we’d gotten back to his pad, and a nice hot debate ensued, which I’ll recount later. The assembled crowd (of 40 or so?) was great, consisting of a few meetup newbies as well as the usual suspects. More details on the actual proceedings will have to wait. The prize for best effort, though, has to go to Negin and Kimmy, who spent all night working their asses off on a second installment of their excellent Nerd of the Week, a series of clips to accompany (or possibly become part of) the movie they’re working on, Nerdcore Rising. They interviewed everyone in sight (I got lav’ed no less than twice), and spent at least eight straight hours working. I was tired of hearing myself talk by the end of the night, so I can only imagine how they felt.

Sheep to Electrify the Today Show [DELAYED]

[UPDATE: Boo! Due to technical difficulties, the Sheep won’t appear on the Today show until sometime early next week. Stay tuned for details.] Sibley Verbeck, CEO of metaverse services firm Electric Sheep Company (still sponsors of this blog) will make a live appearance on NBC’s Today Show tomorrow morning, February 23, 3pointD has just heard. Sibley will be interviewed by Today Show host Matt Lauer, as Sheep Jessie Segal and Kerria Seabrook navigate their avatars around the virtual world of Second Life, checking out some builds and other interesting corners of the culture. The spot will air sometime between 8:00am and 10:00am Eastern (that’s 5:00am and 7:00am SL Time), so get up early and tune in.

Tour Ancient Rome in Second Life

Rik Riel has a nice video on his blog showing off the »Roma sim« in the virtual world of Second Life. The Grid is down at the moment or I’d go check it out, but it looks like a nice build. A no-fly zone, the sim comes complete with a market, religious buildings, and what look like working chariot races and a gladiator’s arena, as well as several interactive educational displays. It’s nice work, and Rik’s video tour is nice work as well. Worth checking out.

Weekly Sundance Screenings in SL Start Tonight

The Sundance Channel in Second Life will be holding weekly screenings of films from the festival and elsewhere, beginning tonight at 5:00pm SL time (8:00pm Eastern), according to the site. Tonight’s screening will feature the “Best of the Fest” wrap-up episode of Sundance’s “Festival Dailies” coverage from the 2007 Festival, followed next week by six “Greenimation” eco-friendly animated shorts, and on March 2 by the nine films in the “Art of Seduction” series.

The open screenings will take place at the Sundance’s main Second Life »screening room«. You can also find video on demand at several media lounges at the Sundance build, featuring more short films and promos for Sundance Channel shoes. Check it out.

BumpTop, Where Have You Been All My Life?

I can’t believe the YouTube clip above has been up there for six months and I’ve only just found it now. I no longer want a touchscreen, now I want a BumpTop interface (which got Dugg a couple of weeks ago and is now all over the Internet, of course). Watch the video above. It contains some of the only truly new GUI techniques I’ve seen in a long time. Touchscreens are extra cool, but they really only give you new ways to do what you’re already doing with a mouse and keyboard. The BumpTop actually gives you useful new ways to easily organize information visually and in three dimensions. Very, very exciting.