Tuesday, 31 July 2007

SLeek - Working again!! :-)

Yay! SLeek is now working again so I can chat to my friends in SL!!! Congratulations and thanks to Delta Czukor (Paul Clement) for updating the code. Thanks must also go to the Best Western hotel Dauphitel (Grenoble, France) who are providing me with internet access tonight!

My observations on the latest incarnation of SLeek are that it works! and that it has managed to let me chat and IM to friends wihtout any hitches! The only down-side (though this may have been recorded in the installation notes..... erm... perhaps I ought to have read them :-* ) is that if I search for anyone, they are shown as being "off-line"..... which is not necessarily true... but pinging them an IM soon shows if they are there or not (Anyone off-line, and the message is queued for later delivery)

However - with nearly 2 months away from SL, I really must start chatting to people again and see what is happening...... I feel REALLY out of touch... but then on a personal side, having spent a couple of months away from SL, I am less inclined to stay up half the night browsing around strange new virtual locations... so my wife is a lot happier that she is seeing me in bed at night and not hunched over a computer screen! It is quite surprising how quickly I have fallen out of touch! (with SL that is!)

Still, with reasonable internet access and a working SLeek, I'll have to see if I can come up with some more interesting blog entries than this drivel!

Tuesday, 17 July 2007


Well, Linden Labs make the SL interface "open" so that anyone could write their own UI. Three Cheers for that.

So we have a 3rd party interface (SLeek to name but one)... Yippeeee I can now access SL from my work laptop when I am stuck in a hotel room away from my shiny turbo nutter ba*&%$d PC with decent graphics card sitting at home un-used. NOT!!

Just as I thought I'd got my SL withdrawal symptoms fixed (a night in a hotel room with my company laptop, SLeek, and a free wifi internet access) I find (not for the first time) that SLeek has been broken by changes to the SL interface. So much for an "open" interface.... it may be open and freely published, but it sort of defeats the object if every new version of SL goes and breaks the interface (or 3rd party clients).

Sorry.... I'm probably suffering from a hefty dose of cynicism and a couple too many beers and glasses of wine!... but it is certainly a pain that I can't get into SL from my non-graphics PC.

What adds insult to injury is that the web interface via Katharine Berry's server doesn't seem to work via the hotel wifi connection either DOH!

Monday, 16 July 2007

More interfaces

Gosh - over a month since my last blog entry..... I really must do something about my (lack of) blogging.

To explain; since the start of April I've been working 3-4 days a week away from home, so have not had the opportunity to go into SL and "play". (for some strange reason my wife does not see exploring SL as a priority activity..... in fact she does not see ANY use of the computer as a priority activity... so when I do get home I don't have time to spend in SL). But enough of my home life.

Whilst working away, depending on the hotel's internet facilities, I am sometimes able to do some web surfing using my laptop. Unfortunately it is not beefy enough in the graphics department to run a full SL client, but it HAS been able to run character interfaces like SLeek (see earlier posts). Unfortunately, SLeek has a nasty habit of breaking every time that the Lindens update the SL protocols. (I understand that the next release of SLeek is likely to be a lot more resilient to interface changes.... we will have to wait and see..... currently it is broken!) However, there is an alternative....

An enterprising young lady (well, I say young lady... it could be an old man for all I know) called katharine berry has developed a web interface to SL. Always liking new toys, I had a play with it earlier this evening.

I'm pleased to report that the interface works! It took me a while to come to this conclusion, as no-one I knew was logged onto SL this evening!! However, once some of my friends came on line, I was able to send them IM's & the system seems to work.

The interface allows you to Chat, IM, view the map and teleport (though to teleport, you really need to know the coordinates of your destination to do the job properly). My only complaint (compared with SLeek) is that the interface does not let you send an IM to someone who is not on-line.

There have been questions raised about the security of entering SL username and password into a third-party web site, but I guess this is one occasion where you just have to trust the site designer (Katherine claims to encrypt username and password, and promises not to store them).

So if, like me, you need to access SL from a machine that does not support the necessary graphics, you might like to give ajaxlife a whirl!