Monday, April 6, 2009

On Voice

Last night was typical of my recent second life.

Jurin took me to a session with the cast of The Guild, which I'd never heard before and concerns the real life face of those playing online games. It was pretty elaborate as someone took the time to recreate the avatars seen on their website, and I have to say it was a pretty good job.

The amazing part was that I did not crash out of Second Life even though there were almost seventy other avatars crowding the sim (all packed into a tiny little corner which looked very funny). In fact, I was able to open up their webpage while it was proceeding, something which usually means instant death for my computer.

It's very strange. I'll be in some ocean sim, crawling on my hands and knees with no one and nothing on it. And on the other side of the coin, I'll be able to pleasantly chat with ninety people in the same sim with everyone running their mystiHUDs, AOs, and all the other scripted crap that people feel are necessary to play (I'll have to check one day whether the new starter avatars Linden Lab has chosen include AOs, I know the tiny dragon does). I hate it. I'm used to consistency. When I could barely move, at least I knew where to go to relieve the agony. Now, it's like roulette.

Also, once again Voice cuts out and kills me. The entire show was in Voice chat. My attempt to turn it on resulted in immediate paralysis. As in, the voices came in sounding like machine guns (nasty stuttering) and the viewer froze. There was a parallel stream, but it wasn't through Second Life, and half the point of attending was to get into Second Life and listen to them. If I used that option, I might as well log out. And of course, that is when Voice decides it wants to work in the first place. All too often it gives me the middle finger and I can't hear anyone.

When it's enabled, it kills me. And when it's not enabled, I'm rendered deaf and pointless. With increasing frequency all major Second Life events outside of small time inworld crews are exclusively voice and while I acknowledge the fact that the fans want to hear the voices of the actors they admire, it's annoying. I stood around supporting the bleachers and chatting to my friends in IM. Such is life.

Since I wasn't doing anything else, I listened into the local chat which, oddly enough, seemed to be how people were asking questions of the cast. When they opened up the Q&A, anyway, it did seem like everyone blurted one out. That's pretty crazy. Did everyone just listen to that podcast outside of Second Life? So anyway, I tuned into the local chat, and it was entertaining to hear what people were blabbing while the show was going on.

I'm rather scatterbrained. I don't tend to save chatlogs manually onto notecards or notepads. I have chatlogging enabled and that takes care of it for me. Once again, my memory failure struck and I do not have the chatlogs on me. Why? When I uninstalled and reinstalled Second Life, it must have reset all the settings and chatlogging is by default turned off. So I've got nothing. Zilch. And without the logs, I really can't remember the details. Just take my word for it that it was really bizarre.

It seems like I'll be busy for some time trying to fix Voice or my computer. Most likely the latter which is rapidly approaching its third birthday. If it goes, I'll be deaf and blind in Second Life. Or probably more like 'dead'.

No comments: