|The Box for my Hippo Avatar by Daryth Kennedy & Stickman Ingmann (moderate)|
I've been rereading Lalo Tellings great series on Second Life history and it occurred to me that there are a few things that form part of our collective consciousness that newer residents might not be familiar with. Nothing world shattering but the sort of thing many of us take for granted and assume everybody knows. I thought I'd highlight just a few.
One of them is the reason for the prevalence of hippos on the grid. If you just arrived and wondered why the apparent fascination with them there is an explanation and the easter egg we were used to in the original viewer was added to V2 just so this bit of history didn't get lost.
|Climbable Beanstalk (general)|
The story goes that "Linden World was opened to a trickle of Beta users in March 2002; the first to register chose the dubious name "Stellar Sunshine" for her avatar. As the Linden staff exited the warehouse office for the night, they left Stellar alone to wander the world ... The next day they got to see what their first citizen had made." (source The Making of Second Life by Wagner James [Hamlet] Au)
What she had made, in part, was a giant climbable beanstalk. You can still see and climb her creation and visiting this first example of "user created content" should be a requirement for all of us.
|Governor's Mansion (general)|
Stellar also built the Governor's Mansion, now a heritage building in Second Life. You can visit here and take a dip in the pool imagining the "old timers" having a barbecue on the deck. What you really ought to do is find your way into the basement and look at some of the early photographs. Holding on to those memories is, I think, important.
|SL Historical Museum (general)|
This is the SL Historical Museum. It's a horrible photo but a fun site to visit. Volunteers created and maintain this build and it's a great place to learn something about the early experiences inworld. In fact, this is where I first found out why there were so many hippos all over the place. My first visit was a few years ago but I still return just to remind myself of the grid's roots and envy the early explorers. That sense of "one community" doesn't really exist now but I wish it did.
|Blue Bay (general)|
As a last location today I'd love to be able to send you to the notorious Corn Field - but that's not possible. It sometimes is opened to the public and I hope you take advantage of that opportunity should it arise.
I can, however, share with you one of the many little discussed "truths" about the Second Life grid. Blue Bay is an innocuous name for a vital piece of our infrastructure. You've certainly rezzed a plywood box inworld and I'll bet you didn't stop to wonder where it came from. Think about it, there are millions of them on the land, in the sky and in inventories but they have to come from somewhere. It might look like a quasi oil derrick but this is, in fact, the factory which churns out thousands of our favourite building blocks a day. The machinery is well oiled and I hope well maintained. If it ever stops working we're in deep deep trouble.