the torch

Inspiring You ~ Part II

In the last part I talked about my favorite photographers in Virtual Worlds. And I also said that I would give you a few tips. Few of my photographs can be seen in my flicker account. I have been reading through a lot of articles to edit the photographs. The good thing about learning to edit is, not only can you do it with your virtual world pictures but also your real life pictures.

Few months back, I had written articles about how to take a good shot in Second Life and also tried a little bit of editing. At that time however, I seemed to be a noob. You may look through the articles here http://mrsdebbysharma.blogspot.in/search/label/PhotographyHow to get a reasonably good shot will explain the technical aspects of windlight settings, graphics settings and the advance settings.

I have already suggested that being good at photoshop or gimp is good for editing purpose. So, what if you want to do a quick editing online. For this purpose I use Pixlr and Picmonkey. They are almost free editing tools. Pixlr is very similar to photoshop. The only difference I have come across is it does not have a pen tool. I use Pixlr for cutting the picture and then the Picmonkey to add effects.

What tips I follow?

Since I mostly edit the pictures so that I can offer the customers a custom or a thematic background. Here are a few tips I follow while taking a snapshot:

  •  Take pictures in white background. That way it is easier to cut the images.
  • While you take pictures change the graphics in the preference window to Ultra High to get a better quality.
  • Remember your angle. Make sure you are avoiding all visible glitches as much as you can.
  • Take the snapshot of the best position according to you. Before taking a picture, you must have an idea of what you are wanting to capture. Is the face for important or the background? Are you capturing an emotion or a pose? Make sure your camera looks from your eyes.
  • Make a folder for all your snapshots so that once the final edit is done you can delete the others.
  • When you save the snapshot, make sure it is at least 1600 X 1200 pixels in size or larger.
The following are the tips to edit:
  • Cut the picture from its background in Pixlr editor using Eraser tool (E).

Use the navigator window to zoom in and zoom out. Increase or decrease the brush size according to the area you have to erase. After erasing if you see any glitches, don’t worry We can edit it further in Picmonkey.

  • For the above picture I want something elegant in the background. At the same time I want the whole image bright like in a ball room.

A background picture size can be same as the snapshot or bigger. HD quality pictures are better.If the background picture and the snapshot picture quality lighting does not match, then edit each of them in picmonkey. To find out, go to Pixlr, then go to Layer and click on “Open image as Layer” from the drop down menu. In the small window called “Layers” adjust   which layer comes beneath etc.

As you can see, the snapshot looks dull in front. Hence, I will edit the snapshot first in picmonkey and adjust the exposure.

 Well, looks better than before may be a little too brighter. This can be adjusted later.

  • The next step is to edit and add effects in picmonkey

Open the background in picmonkey editer. Then add the snapshot as an overlay {looks like a butterfly sign}. Do not merge the overlays until you are sure with the final picture. Look through the various affects and add which seems correct to the theme and to your eye. When you click the overlay you get a small window, click on the eraser tab to erase any glitches.

  • The last step is to add shadows

The shadow will be opposite to the light. Also if there are too many lights in the room, the shadow will be fade. We will add the shadow in Pixlr, by adding a new transparent layer and painting the shadow on it with a brush. The color will be black. You can change the opacity of the layer as shown in the picture.

However, for this particular picture, as you can see the shadows are on the floor just beneath the object. Hence, our final picture looks like this.

What have I done?

In the effects category in Picmonkey Editor, I have added a spotlight, focal soften and focal zoom. Then I have merged the overlay and adjusted the exposure.  A little crop with a frame and shadow has taken the photograph to a new level.

Why I did this?

I have added these effects in correlation to my theme. The theme is “A couple  is standing by the door. All that matters is to be in each other arms. When they are together the world spins around.”

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the torch

Inspiring You ~ Part I

There are two things in-world that are most famous. One is fashion and the other is photography. Both can come either free or with a fee. Either ways, these both are loved by every resident in-world even if he or she denies it. Recently, I have developed a taste of photography among other things. Yesterday I was talking to one of the admirers of my work,  !mag!nat!on Photo Studiosand he asked me about my inspirations. So, this blog goes out to him and all the photographers who wants to be inspired.

There are few people who have a great collection in photography. An thankfully, I have them all either on flicker o facebook. As  almost all residents have a both the accounts to connect for business and to make friends in the in-world community.

The following list in not on the basis on my preferences.

Goodnight Photography

Goodnight Photography

Continue reading

mantra to prevent cancer

Why I Relay and why should You?

With the RFL Fever going on, this time I will take a leap towards another direction and talk about Cancer.  You all know about cancer and RFL.  I have written articles in the past, if you wish to read type, “RFL or Cancer” in the search box on this site. Whenever I talk about cancer, people ask me a few common questions.

 

What is Cancer?

Cancer - An abnormal  growth of cells in a certain body part.

Types of Cancer - Cancer can affect any part of the body, i.e, bladder, brain, breast, cervical etc. Types of Cancer also includes Colorectal Cancer, Lung Cancer, Melanoma, Ovarian Cancer, Pancreatic Cancer, Prostrate Cancer, Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma etc. and other list of cancer types.

Symptoms - Unusual Lump in body, persistent sore or ulcer, persistent cough or hoarseness, change in mole of skin, change in bowel habits, unexplained pain, weight loss, sweats at night, tiredness or fatigue, rash or unusual textures on skin, abdominal pain, abnormal bleeding, difficulty in swallowing, difficulty in urine.

 

Why I relay?

During the last few days, I was away to visit my uncle (mother’s elder brother), stage IV cancer. He has been given chemotherapy for about a year. The environment in our family is gloomy since the time the therapy stopped. Which means that it is just a matter of few months. At the same time my first cousin sister (uncle’s daughter) was expecting.  After the baby was born, the environment changed.

The baby brought a positive energy among everyone. My uncle started spending more time with the baby. In the last few days he was standing up and walking again, doing his own chores.

 

My point is death is inevitable. We all have to face it one day with or without pain. But, the time when someone close to you is slipping away in front of your eyes and you can not do anything about it, is the worst feeling ever in human life. The days when we were just sitting by the bed and hope fluttered away. When the heart tore apart yet the tears didn’t roll down. When each member of the family used to escape to washroom to cry in deep sorrow.

Death at that time was not coming for just the patient but to the whole family.

With the baby born, her smile, her cry everything about the baby changed the atmosphere. There was a hint of smile in everyone’s face. Smiles and laughter recovered my uncle. There was hope in the heart.

 

What is the Mantra?


Mantra for Family

Find reasons to keep encouraging the affected to live. Only hope can bring life.

http://www.cancer.org/healthy/index

 

Mantra for Survival

Since the older generations we have been hearing from our grand parents that

Had we lived by the mantra, the ratio of survivors could have been more.

Do you Relay? If yes, why do you Relay? Share your stories in the comments section.

 

images (1)

InWorldz ~ V R 5

We are five years old. It calls for Grand Celebrations.

Its the fifth birthday for InWorldz and we will celebrate it in the month of April. The celebrations will be over a wide area.

What are events?

 The following are the Sim number and their respective events.

  1. Fashion Shows, Runway and Fashion Shops
  2. Other contests like Cake making, Crazy party hat, Crazy vehicle
  3. Contest for Fantasy Builds
  4. Contest for Home Builds
  5. Contest for Business Builds
  6. Oceanscape for Roleplay
  7. Water sim to reduce lag
  8. Water sim to reduce lag
  9. Water sim to reduce lag Continue reading

Hunting Season in Valentine Month

The valentine month, or the ‘lovey-dovey’ month, has come again. It is the time that we love to buy gifts for our valentines or dress up in our special new outfits to impress them. This February, 2014, Second Life and InWorldz have a lot of hunts where you can participate and win many cool things.

List of Hunts with Valentines Theme at

Second Life are as follows:

  • Carrie’s Lingerie Crazy Heart Hunt (31st Jan to 14th Feb, 2014)

Organizers: Carrie Bridger

Aim: Find 6 crazy hearts to win Valentine Haley or Valentine Lounge set. Continue reading

HUD

Easy to Understand~ HUDs

One of our dear readers asked the most interesting question:

 “What are huds and kits?”

 It’s been a week since I have been working around to explain huds and kits. So, this time I will be talking about HUD or Head Up Display or Heads Up Display

 

The most simple way to understand a HUD is that it is something like “Google Glasses” in a Virtual World. The viewer is the world that you see through your eyes. The HUD just makes your life easier.

Why is it used?

 If you play inside virtual worlds, you would know that there are some things like the skin, shape, a few jewelry items that are your favorites and portray your personality. You would never want to remove them. And there are some things like the clothing: pants, shirt, jacket, skirt, hair (colors) etc. that you wish you would not have to take off and find a new color/pattern to wear everyday. That is when the texturing HUD helps us, i.e., for customers as well as for the builders. 

What are the uses?

 There are various kinds of HUDs specific to their own function. Among the whole lot, a few are:

  • Texturing for clothes,shoes and hair
  • Teleporting
  • Combat System
  • Using automotive
  • Role Plays
  • Access to Community
  • Turn pages of Book or Magazine
  • Assist Party Greeters or Organizers
  • Play sound or gesture in local or private chat
  • Play animation

I never knew I had so many HUDs in my Inventory. Word of Caution: Never wear too many or else be ready to face lag.

The possibilities are innumerable. The above are the broad aspects. Knowingly or unknowingly we wear many HUDs. Like the Bloodlines HUD, Gor HUD, Xcite HUD, Life Sim HUD etc. These days with the introduction of mesh, designers sell their products with texture HUDs. 

What is a HUD?

It is an object that has X, Y and Z axis in the virtual world. But when it is worn by an avatar, it seems like a flat 2D object which can be moved around the screen on X and Y axis and is visible to only that particular person. It is a script that allows the user to function easily without having to search through their overflowing Inventory.

How to use a HUD?

For a user, it’s nothing like Rocket Science. Normally, HUDs come with Notecards which explain how to use stuff. However, they are self explanatory. To choose a texture, click on the colors and wait a few moments for it to render (appear). Similarly, to choose a gesture, page, size, height, location, etc., just click on your choice to select and let the magic happen.

Can everyone create HUD?

 Yes, you can with little bit of scripting or programming knowledge. So, what if you do not have this knowledge?  You can either hire a script writer or refer to the LSL script Library for help. The best possible place to look for a script writer is to post it in communities. A script writer may charge around L$6,000 for a simple book HUD (full permissions, i.e., copy, modify, transfer).

How can I create a HUD?

If you are a script writer it’s pretty easy. However, I assume since you are reading this you are not a Pro. I would personally suggest you to refer to LSL Library as I already recommended. Then join the Builders Brewery Group in Second Life.  The members there are impromptu and very helpful. Better still, take classes. Builders Brewery offers free classes. There are other building communities like the Hippo who also provide the same services. Tutorials can be found on YouTube. And do not forget a little more research always helps to get the finishing touch.

A few links to help:

I hope this article was helpful. I have tried my best to explain the concept of HUD in the simplest, best possible way. Your views and add-on’s are most welcome. You will see more about kits next week on Wednesday, 22nd Jan, 2014.

Tranquility Dexler

Meet the Developer: Tranquility Dexler, co-owner of InWorldz

We had a chance to talk to one of the owners of InWorldz, the software architect Tranquility Dexler. Dexler plans and executes the software side of InWorldz; everything that has to do with the software behind the grid goes through him. To help him, he has a lot of contractors, employees and volunteers, all dedicated to make InWorldz the best experience you can possibly have. If something goes wrong, Dexler or anyone on his team will be right on it, hunt down the problem and fix it as soon as possible.

Dexler started, as many others, in Second Life. He was building and exploring the grid, when one day…

“One of my contacts there let me know that there was a grid that needed some help with getting things working right on an Opensim based grid. I hung out a lot in what was at that time the IBM sandbox. I took a look over here and got to know the other founders. I had always known that I wanted to get into games and 3d simulations. I found out they were really nice people and great to work with so I started doing some volunteer work around March of 2010. I think that was when I officially became the third founder here after much work getting groups and some other things working.”

Here is the interview we had with him

The regions offer 45,000 prims, which is more than most of the virtual worlds. Is there any specific reason for this number?

45,000 was the default (I believe) when we started with Opensim 0.6.5 So what we did was optimize our code around this number to make sure that we could sustain high server-side performance with this number. We built the software into the limit that was originally set by opensim and made sure in our case that 45,000 was more than just a marketing objective, but an achievable technical goal as well.
When we first rolled the grid out. that 45,000 number caused a lot of headaches, and we kept pounding at the software until it became stable with fully loaded regions with lots of scripts and a lot of avatars.
Because we worked with that number rather than compromising, we now have a very memory and CPU efficient simulator that allows us to provide cost effective regions to people and still provide us with the income for staff and contractors to keep InWorldz moving forward.” Continue reading

SL-IW The Committee

The Day Second Life Met inWorldz

On November 30 2013, the barrier between Virtual Worlds were broken when the residents of both Second life and InWorldz met for a discussion. The topics ranged from DCMA, copyrighting, the growth of inWorldz, the Second Life TOS and griefing that inWorldz might face with the growth of its users.

SL-IW Sign

The event was informative and shed light on the problems both grids faced with their rapid growth. The three topics that took form were  copyrighting and DMCA, with a lot of content creators concerned about their rights within the virtual settings. Another was the laws against gambling and why Second Life and inWorldz must follow them, and finally the ‘rivalry’  between Second Life and inWorldz users.

If you are interested in seeing the discussion,  check out the link below

http://www.twitch.tv/nydia_tungsten/b/484003456

Snapshot_001

The Haunting of Sec-..InWorldz is Coming….: The Victorian Haunted Museum

Is there nothing more chilling than a Museum? There is something a little off about all those old relics in one place. Your little imagination can run wild as you think about the deadly history of these…objects.

Then again, there is always the running scare of what happens in a museum when you aren’t around.

This haunting comes from the virtual world of InWorldz; you might say that Second Life is its evil twin.

By the way, if you do choose to visit Museum, try not to draw attention to yourself.  The statues at the entrance don’t look very friendly…

And, I assure you, they can see everything you do . . .

InShape_logo

Virtual World News: InWorldz’s InShape.

Do you own an exercise bike, an elliptical or a treadmill and ever wanted to have the feeling of getting somewhere instead of just staring at the wall while exercising?

The I think you’d be interested in InShape, a tool that transform your exercise equipment into an augmented reality tool for InWorldz and let you see your progress on screen while you’re exercising.

With the help of a smartphone, InShape works as a replacement for your keyboard and mouse while exploring the grid of InWorldz and lets you explore in a completely new way. Every step you take on the treadmill is translated to a step in the virtual world, helping you to keep motivated while you do what otherwise can feel like a chore. Continue reading