Thursday, August 23, 2007

Metaverses: Their Effects on the Greater Consciousness

Fond memories flood my mind when I look back on my childhood days. Days of biking through open fields and wandering the ravines that backed our townhome. Of collecting rocks and burying shoeboxes full of 'perceived' treasures to be found by some other child of the future. I remember my collection of pressed leaves and the odd dead 'bug' that I would find and keep enclosed in a glass jar to be later analyzed. I remember the reams and reams of 'code' that I developed for my secret spy ring that would be scotch taped to the back wall of my closet, hidden carefully behind my hanging clothes.

I am remembering all these things as I sit here underneath a tree in a city park with my laptop, wirelessly accessing the 'information superhighway', as it was called back in the early '90's, while my avatar (a pixelated online representation of myself) is dressed in construction worker attire, creating a commercial build for a Japanese company in Second Life (an online virtual world created by Linden Lab of San Francisco).

"two paradigm shifts within a decade ..."

I have been immersed in the digital medium before it even became a reality to the rest of mainstream. When Nicholas Negroponte's book, "Being Digital" came out in 1995 I read that book cover to cover and twice over that same week. My thoughts were deeply intertwined with the concepts and visions that he had presented.

"Being Digital" reminded me of Alvin Toffler's book, "Future Shock", that came out in 1970. Both books stand side by side one another on a book shelf.

Both these books had a considerable impact on the way I viewed the world. I have realized that I had lived my life being aware that I was amidst an era of immense technological change and advancement - thus opening and preparing my mind for the world of the future. A future where children's experiences would be so different from that of my childhood. A future that would see two paradigm shifts within a decade and would become privy to witnessing their impact on our daily lives, in a global scale.

The first paradigm shift was the advent of the world wide web when it became accessible to the mainstream. Because of this 2D Platform I was able to sit on my bed and book a plane ticket to Europe, transfer funds from within my bank accounts, upload photos of my chihuahua to an online page to be viewed by my friends in another hemisphere and talk to my partner in Germany using Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) all while watching the CNN morning news in video format - from my laptop (a laptop that was not connected to any cable or power source!)

"Closing the gap of the Digital Divide is inevitable."

The second paradigm shift actually started occurring almost simultaneously along with the 2D Platform - the creation of 3D virtual worlds or metaverses.

It behooves me to think that with all the hype Second Life received from the mainstream media being a platform for collaboration with education, the arts and various other projects, there have been other 3D platforms that have been quietly doing the same for the past decade, all with a healthy following of Real Life businesses, universities and the like. New metaverses are also being created by the handful almost every month (don't quote me on this, this is just suspect).

One 3D platform to watch out for is HiPiHi Ltd, a Chinese based company whose founder and CEO, Hui Xu was recently quoted as saying in a recent press release, "It is just a beginning of the globalization of the 3D virtual world." - just the beginning is an understatement.

I am NOT about to make a comparison between other metaverses (that is a whole other blog in itself). In my head, however, I am wondering what impact, both positive and negative, will these metaverses have on our societies. I can only wonder that on one planet alone, our earth, we have so many variables that keep us distanced from one another, religion, race, politics, sexual orientation, just to name a few.

Metaverses are being created where people can choose which platform or platforms best suits their tastes - will these metaverses separate us even more, I wonder.

In 2005 I blogged an entry about how Second Life can actually be used as a testing platform for improvement of Real Life social, business, industrial and educational models. It would be a place where we can create, improve and implement 'things that will work' for the benefit of the other 3D world (planet earth) and perhaps, humanity as a whole. Back then, I was only aware of Second Life and ignorant to the other 3D worlds that have been around for more than a decade. Second Life to me was the ultimate communication tool 'on cocaine'. Visions of a better world - through the use of Second Life's platform sent my mind reeling off in tangents.

This lead me to begin my journey into 3D platforms and other metaverses. This also lead me to realize the inevitable, possible, perceived 'separateness' that metaverses would have on 'us'. Or would it?

Then I thought ...

I remembered a few years ago reading something on Group Souls and Twin Soul Mates. It has suddenly struck me that with 'like minds attracting', these various metaverses may serve, on a metaphysical level, platforms for Group Souls to get together and achieve common goals. This thought appeased me, somewhat. I will continue to observe these various metaverses and follow up on blog entries and the like, on how these metaverses are changing and impacting our global society.

After these thoughts had raced through my mind, I took a charcoal pencil and quickly drew what came into my mind. The drawing was this.

Later, I logged into Second Life and made a 3D representation of the sketch.

The middle sphere represents the earth. The other smaller spheres around the 'earth' represent the different metaverse platforms that exist. Each metaverse platform, esoterically, also represents a Group Soul. There would be many more Group Soul groups, I only chose a handful of smaller spheres for easy visual. The larger, transparent sphere, where the 'earth' and the Group Soul spheres are enclosed in, represents the Global of Greater Consciousness.

My theory is this:

Each metaverse serves as a platform for various 'like minds' to connect and collaborate as they see fit. There may be similiar projects being collaborated on in the other metaverses and that is a good thing because ultimately the energies of all are somehow connected and related anyway and on an esoteric level, increasing the 'frequency' or 'vibrational' qualities of a specific 'thought project' .

I intend to explain this theory in more detail, but for now I will leave it as is. There are other 3D platforms I need to discover and explore and I hope to bring to you more insight into all of them.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Dancing in the dark ..

It was already past midnight in RL and yet, there I was, breakdancing in SL.
I attended a Sim opening of an RL artist (Socorrow Villa) in SL. I had almost forgotten about the opening until she kindly IM'd me to remind me.

Funny, but I was just about to log off of SL when I received her IM.

In RL, Fim Fischer's (my SL partner) human was getting ready for bed and I wanted to time my logging off with him. I had just finished rezzing the AU BUILD rez-faux package on Virtuoland HQ when I got the IM for Een. I had to go. Afterall, she attended the 1st TOUCH Online Magazine launch and I wanted to show my support. I am also in the middle of writing up an interview piece with her so it was my chance to take some SL photos.

I felt strange attending an SL function without Fim there.

We use to be inseparable in SL. Not only were we inseparable in SL but we were also inseparable in RL via VoIP. If it were not for sleeping - we would have been always in SL and always on VoIP.

The even stranger thing is, now that we are in RL together, we are now never in SL together. And .. while we are in RL physically, if we are at home, we usually are apart, sitting at our respective corners, in front of our monitors.

I know I did not start this. I would much rather live in RL, however, now that we have an RL business that involves SL - rightly so, that we should be on our computers logged into SL - for WORK.

As it is, we do not even work together in SL - and are still learning to work together in RL. *sigh*

Anyway it was strange not having Fim with me. This was the first social function I have attended in SL - without Fim, eversince we met in RL.

I wonder if it's a sign.

My avatar was dancing while I was sitting in the dark watching Fim's human sleep and hearing his soft snores. It was bright on Gaea .. but for me, it felt as if I was dancing in the dark.

It's getting mightly lonely in RL. I sometimes wish I never left SL. I sometimes wish I never allowed the Fim and Ysabel relationship to leave SL. We had so much fun in SL. RL is often lonely.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Friday, August 3, 2007

My Soul Sister Across the Ocean

I met my soul sister awhile back. She had found me amongst the countless other pixelated souls in Second Life. It was meant to be. Second Life never ceases to amaze me. I have yet to remind myself that Second Life is just another platform for my learning to take place and meeting people in this metaverse is of course, meant to be.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

The Reality of Real Life

It's nearing my 3 month stay here and I have a few more days until I here the verdict of whether I get to stay longer or not. I do not think I can handle staying longer as a Tourist. It's such a big change from my previous life of a few months ago where I had everything my way, had my own things with me - that I worked hard for and paid for with my own money. I had my own king-size bed, my own walk-in closet where my clothes where neatly placed on black hangers, colour coordinatated.

Being vegetarian, I would routinely go to my favourite organic store, WHOLEFOODS to buy the usual, Odwalla Juices, Edamame, Couscous, Hummus, veggies, Kombucha etc ... etc ... oh and of course my Fiji water. Funny, but the lady that researched on the different types of water from all over the world and their property values was German, Dr. Barbara Hendel. Her book, Water & Salt was first published in Germany and what?! No Fiji water any where to be found.

Plazes.Com. The largest and fastest growing wifi site was founded in Germany by a couple of really cool guys! And what?!! No free wifi in Frankfurt Germany!!! What's up with that?!

Oh! And did I mention I use to have a car. All paid up for! 5 years of making payments .. and out of desperation, I sold it for extra money to get my ass over here - and now I walk. It's not too bad. The walking is good. It helps burn off the extra calories from all the potatoes, bread and butter that I've had to resort to eating. *sigh*

As well, I have never worn FLAT shoes, unless it was to take an emergent trip to the drugstore at, like 2 am in the morning, but now, all I can wear are my Sketchers. I've only worn my Sketchers, like 4 times in 4 years while living in Houston!

Now, all my jeans, whose lengths are perfect for my 3 inch heeled shoes now all have tears at the bottom of the hems. And it's not like I can afford to buy jeans or anything else for that matter.

My friends in Houston, My Eddie and Freya have recently helped me out. My Eddie sent $300 U.S. to a PayPal account - which is like, $210. euro. Just enough to pay the $80 euro for a conditional Residence Permit, to buy the essential 'a female cannot live without' items, such as, a jar of Pond's Cold Cream that I have been using for like 12 years, John Frieda's Shampoo (I know, this is a luxury for some but for me it is essential. It is the only product for my hair that does not dry it! And I am NOT about to compromise on the 'female essentials'. God knows I already willingly compromised on everything else!

Hell, that is what alimony is all about! To maintain the lifestyle and quality of living that a spouse was use to prior to the divorce. In this case, no one divorced me. It was I, that had divorced my self from a life that I had in Houston.

Real Life Ysabel is still slowly getting acclimated to her new surroundings. That's for sure.

There are days when I feel terribely homesick. There are days when yes .. I hate to say it, but I feel unwanted and neglected. Fancy that! Words or emotions muttered by such an independent woman such as I! But .. when one is in a strange land and does not speak the language. When she needs to illicit the help of people who talk the language and need to discuss matters of importance - mainly dealing with her status in Germany, with others .. and you do not understand what they are saying .. and the right to know what to say and when to say things and what to ask seems to be taken away because of a language barrier .. WHOA! That totally leaves even the most independent MAN - security challenged!

What do I miss most?

My King sized Bed. My Closet. My two dogs. My friend(s) that love me. Being able to do what I want and say want I want. My food. My car. My Life.

Ah.. but aren't I suppose to be starting a new life here? Huh?!