About a boat

It’s been a while since I posted something about my sailing outings in the SL seas, so here are a few pictures of my latest trip with the Leeward Cruising Club (LCC) Sunday, August the 30th. I crashed at some point when entering the last quarter of the plotted route. It was so unexpected (roll eyes). This time though, I don’t know if it was due to the usual lagginess on sim crossings, or if it was a brief network disconnection, because this weekend was mercilessly plagued by generalized Internet outages across the mid/west US that affected a lot of online services (though I don’t know if SL was among the afflicted).

Sailing last Sunday

By the way, my boat is still missing, so if you see an unmanned white and red Bandit IF (as the one in the pictures, sans skipper) somewhere on the shores of a west-southwest Blake sea charted territory, let me know. It’s not a stylish drone, it’s probably my boat (yep, it’s that small). It hasn’t made its way to my Lost and Found folder yet, so I’m afraid it may be littering someone else’s peaceful bay.

The Bandit IFF

From my point of view, teleporting from one sim to another conceals SL distances so much that you hardly have a clear notion of all the space you may have covered in that couple of seconds. Beyond the classic lifeless screen marking the transition between your point of departure and your destination, there is no easy way to sensibly be aware of that expanse. In contrast, spending some time traveling by boat, watching as objects –sometimes abruptly– enter and leave your field of view in real time, and then arriving at some other port (even if there’s nothing of that sort) gives the simulation the e-motion-nal perception we residents deserve to grasp the mental picture of SL’s vastness. Me thinks that drifting at a normal speed, as in a sailboat, makes this virtual world more “authentic” to the mind of a transitional human like me, and so I prefer sim-hopping this way to doing the Star Trek thing. Unfortunately, only a fraction of the grid is interconnected, so sailing is not a reliable option to get everywhere.

Sailing in the horizon

Watching as time goes by while you go from one place to another has always been part of the traveling experience in RL. We don’t like it that much (even all the waiting in airports, bus stops or train stations add to the mischievous equation) and would certainly welcome a method of transportation that would cut distances close to none. But so far, moving faster has been the only solution. Appearing somewhere else instantly may only be achieved on a mental level, and places such as SL already offer that service. So let’s say, welcome to the future…

Random stuff

The Arcade, autumn edition

If you haven’t heard the news –and I doubt it– the autumn (September) edition of the quarterly Arcade gacha event is just around the corner, and as usual it’s packed with nice goodies only a bunch of lucky resellers… I mean players, will be able to enjoy. Good luck to those attempting the feat of enduring the unavoidable denial of entry attacks and the abominable lag during the first couple of weeks: it’ll probably be easier to get an ultra rare prize than to enter the sim. Me, as all other losers, will wait until the excess of duplicates and triplicates and quadruplicates, etc., hit the yard sale grounds (most likely a few hours after opening) before going out to look for the spoils of the initial frenzy phase.

Since I don’t get review copies from any participating store –because I’m a self-confessed terrible blogger and will probably have my first chance at blogging something a month after the event is over– the best I can do is to redirect you to the Arcade’s official shopping guide, a website I urge you to visit before knocking on the event’s door. That’s not a bad practice at all since it could well save you a lot of time, both in the Arcade and in yard sales.

Remember: if you play the gacha machines, you’ll be supporting the creators directly, which is a good deed to do. They really work hard to offer you so much eye candy. If instead you opt for the yard sales, well… somebody else paid them already anyway.

In the picture: not a single thing to do with the new round of the Arcade, sorry. Only adding to decorate the post, that’s it.

burt artis compass

Fun facts

While waiting for tropical storm Erika to hit my area later tonight (the center of the storm is expected to make landfall after 9:00 p.m.), I decided to try burt Artis’ Compass with (WWC) wind indicator (available on the marketplace) on one of my sailboats. To my surprise, I also found it works for regular avatar movements too. So here are some curious results of that alternate experiment.

  • On average, an avatar walk at a speed of 6.2 to 6.4 kts, if done on an almost flat surface.
  • An avatar can reach a speed of 9.6 to 9.9 kts when running on said flat surface (on my test I reached an average of 10.4 kts going downhill).
  • An avatar flies at 31.1 kts on a horizontal direction.
  • Free fall speed seems to max out at 99.9 kts (if you don’t hit an unforeseen sky platform on your way down first). It could well have been that the instrument can’t measure faster speeds, I don’t know.

About to hit the ground

According to Wikipedia, a knot is “a unit of speed equal to one nautical mile (1.852 km) per hour, approximately 1.151 mph.” Later on, it points out that:

The speeds of vessels relative to the fluids in which they travel (boat speeds and air speeds) are measured in knots. For consistency, the speeds of navigational fluids (tidal streams, river currents and wind speeds) are also measured in knots. Thus, speed over the ground (SOG) (ground speed (GS) in aircraft) and rate of progress towards a distant point (“velocity made good”, VMG) are also given in knots.

A person’s walking or running speed is not measured in knots, by the way (I’m sure you knew that already). I’m just giving these fun facts because they were the measures given by the thingy I was testing, and because it was also interesting to compare it to the speed of the sailboat I was trying out (which speed at 15 kts winds tended to average 6 to 10 kts, depending on the direction of sail).