So, what is this blog about?
Enlades, as an idea for a blog, came to mind and was discussed between Thom Lunasea and myself from around July to its inception in September 2010. Up to that point both of us had happily spent over two and half years building, meeting, shopping, exploring, working and learning in Second Life; the virtual environment constructed and owned by Linden Research, Inc.
In 2010 we decided that we were going to leave Second Life and try our own virtual world building. We chose to set up an OpenSim install, initially on a pc and then on a hosted server. We worked on our own 4 regions and did a lot of research, although we did make a return to Second Life in 2011. Unfortunately, the server host company folded in 2011 but we still have our back-up files and intend to keep our Enlades region as a smaller scale project.
In that time we looked at a great many resources on how to set up an OpenSim region and to learn to make our own creations. There are a heck of a lot of websites, videos, forums and wiki pages; it is no small task to sift through all the information, especially when you are trying to develop your own skills. If it was time-consuming and difficult for us then how easy or encouraging would it be for someone new to the whole thing?
And that is how Enlades came about. Neither of us claim to be experts in multiple fields; what we can say is that we are both people who want to share what we have found – whether that be postings from people who are trailblazers in content creation techniques or to try and explain, in reasonably transparent terms, how to set up your own asset database.
Enlades is based around the idea that most people can learn how to build their own virtual world and content. Which is why we concentrate on explaining techniques that can be used in a variety of environments – whether that is Second Life, OS Grid or an OpenSimulator installation on your laptop. There are many free resources available but there are somewhat fewer that explain how you start making your own.
For us: no virtual environment is “better” than another. They all have their own advantages and disadvantages. Enlades started out with a concentration on our OpenSim experiences but we’re happy to include information that can be of help to people who are residents of diverse grids.
Both of us believe that virtual worlds have a great deal to offer. Whilst people may decry “it’s not real, it’s just photons and playing at dolls!” that ignores what positive changes it can have in a variety of fields.
In time we may get around to finding some snappier sounding mission statement but for now here’s a favourite quote, taken from the introduction of Wil Wheaton’s book ‘Memories of the Future’.
“Because nobody told me I couldn’t.”
David Gerrold, screenwriter and novelist.