Littlefield Grid purchased by Linden Labs

Posted April 1, 2014 by Dirk Mathers
Categories: Uncategorized

Early VR Helmet

Early VR Helmet

“We’re quite excited,” said Darth Linden, interim manager of Littlefield Grid during the transition. “We needed a solid platform for testing and introduction of our new tablet and Oculus Rift project. Combining the portability of a tablet with the virtual reality helmet. Our own servers were far too laggy to work effectively.”

Experimental VR Suit

Experimental VR Suit

Evidence points to “The Lab” courting Facebook with several floral delivery trucks seen at Zuckerberg offices and home. And then there’s the restraining order. “Who hasn’t experienced a restraining order in the course of a relationship?” asked Darth, defensively.

When asked about portability issues of the helmet and accidents involving early beta testers walking into doorways and one in front of a casino shuttle bus, Darth was quick to dismiss these as “growing pains”.

The current beta unit does have power supply issues, currently requiring the user to carry a car battery in a back pack. “Since most of our users are sturdy youth we don’t anticipate this will be an issue. The rumors about radiation leakage are untrue. I can’t say more on that because of the non-disclosure agreement part of the settlement. However I will say the tanning application that emerged from that is pretty sweet.”

Curremt Beta VR Helmet

Curremt Beta VR Helmet

Former LFGrid admins were enroute to Bermuda and could not be reached for comment.

(Happy April Fools Day!)

At a hotel somewhere…

Posted March 27, 2014 by Dirk Mathers
Categories: Uncategorized



Posted February 20, 2013 by Dirk Mathers
Categories: Uncategorized

Here’s an addendum that popped in my head earlier today and as long as I’m in a posting mood I may as well share it.

Stonehaven was so laggy at times we jokingly called it Laghaven.  I’ve heard some people express theories on why this was.  Opinions are like assholes — everyone has one.  In the case of Stonehaven it had many.

“There’s too many scripts running!  Its the glass maze!  There’s too many cages!  Waah waah waah…”

The first week Stonehaven was open, there was no lag until you got to about 35 avatars on the island.  The cage count never really varied.  In fact, the script count went way down after I evicted Beverly and her particle crap and laggy-as-hell Chorazin Allen cages. (Chorazin, you’re a nice guy but your cages are lag monsters.)

I will tell you EXACTLY what the problem was with lag in Stonehaven. It was two-fold.  First, BDSMers tend to be scripty as hell to start with.  Then you throw in hair with a jillion prims, each with a resizing, recoloring, denture whitening script… But worst of all, Linden Labs BROKE THE SOFTWARE.  The killer lag hit when they introduced Windlight, Voice, and the real culprit — Mono.  There was a bug in Mono.  You don’t believe me, go ask Psi Merlin.  She spent six months doing research, presenting the evidence to the Lindens and finally FORCED them to admit there was a bug in the Mono script compiler.  There was no real lag in Stonehaven before Mono.  From what I understand of the technical side of the issue, the problem could only be fixed by upgrading Mono which also would have required an upgrade of the OS and I think one other package as well.  It was an interdependence issue.  Of course the obvious solution would have been to roll it the hell back out, but by the time Psi had shoved their noses in it everyone was crack dependent on the extra script memory capacity Mono afforded. (Perhaps one day Psi will emerge from one of her comas and give the full and factual details behind this, but this is my understanding as I am best able to convey it.) The problem was never properly addressed and the one Linden who seemed to understand the issue was downsized in the Great Purge.

Proof the Linden Labs software is still broken and runs like a pile of steaming poo?  Stonehaven is alive and well on OSgrid.  There aren’t as many cages in the cage room as there was in SL.  (We’ll build more.  Give us some time.) But there’s enough scripted stuff here to be a taste of what it was Back In The Day.  So how come it runs smooth and lag free here on the “inferior” Open Simulator software? There’s no rubber banding, no swim walking in oatmeal, no delays getting script menus to open.

So why didn’t Linden Labs ever fix their mistake(s)?  Several reasons.  Its easier to tack on new shiny than fix something.  And shiny distracts you.  “Its a different kind of programming!” was a frequent excuse.  To which I would say, “Then fire the useless people and hire someone who can fix it.”  A real fix would have required upgrading a couple other software packages.  ( I find it ironic that a company who used to endlessly badger us to update to the latest video drivers with every client release was unwilling to take their own advice and update their own software.)  But the Real Reason Mono never got fixed?  Linden Labs would have to admit They Made A Mistake.

The decline and fall of Stonehaven in SL and it’s rebirth in OS

Posted February 20, 2013 by Dirk Mathers
Categories: Uncategorized

Its been brought to my attention that someone is posting free form delusions and theories as to the disappearance of Stonehaven from SL and my association with Walter Balazic. I guess its more fun to speculate or eat a handful of hallucinogenic mushrooms than actually ask me.

The decline of Stonehaven in SL was due to several things.  Trying to keep both the roleplayers and the vendor renters happy was a constant and ultimately impossible challenge.  Marketplace sucked most of what was left of the life out of that mall.  There were a few stalwarts, but it wasn’t enough to support the place.

Then there was a mental defective carrying on a crusade against Stonehaven.  I don’t think it cost us many people, but I’m sure it kept a few away.

Then there was the dismissal of a bunch of Wardens.  Once someone became a Warden they almost always vanished within a week. I didn’t need twenty Wardens who were never there. A few took offense. In the case of Yasmin’s crew, Yar Telling actually asked to be removed, and then wanted back in again.  I guess she wanted the tag but didn’t want the responsibility.  (Yar was another great one at inventing tales.  You and she should get together, Magnuz.  Unless of course you’re Yar.) Since Yasmin’s crew were thick as thieves, if I got rid of one I had to get rid of the lot.  In fact, I said that when the first one signed on. I really should apologize to Yasmin for the way that went down.  In fact, I will.  I had told her after someone had accused her of something that I’d always give her the chance to defend herself and if I let her go I’d do it to her face.  I’m sure she thought that extended to this as well and felt betrayed by it.  And that wasn’t my intention.  I still think doing them all at once via notecards to everyone was the best way to do it rather than one at a time and listening to the rumors fly.  Bad feelings from that made a few others wander off.

And then there were the people intent on starting their own play spaces.  This splintered the few people left.

Okay, so what brought on that act of firing all those Wardens? We’ve heard the theory that Walter was pulling strings behind the scenes.  So what was the deal with Walter exactly?

Walter came to SL and was not impressed with the state of BDSM there.  He was a RL lifestyle Dominant looking for Safe, Safe, Consensual play and places. He was disillusioned and about ready to leave when someone put him on to Stonehaven.  He fell in love with the place. Samatha Congrejo (another female impersonator, like Yar Telling) was impressed with Walter and suggested I keep an eye on him.  Up until then all the Warden appointees had been female.  Also, someone behind the scenes (Yar among them) was pushing the idea that men were not welcome in Stonehaven and I must say I barely felt welcome there myself.  I knew it would cause a sh*tstorm if I offered him a Warden tag, so of course I had to do it.

October rolled around and Samatha and a friend of hers went completely batsh*t and put 5000 prims of halloween related crap on the island without asking me.  I was taking so many beatings on a daily basis that I was worn down.  I was sick to death of Stonehaven and all the assh*les in it telling me how to run it.  I tried to give Stonehaven to Walter.  Several times.  He refused.  He encouraged me to man up and take back what was mine.  Far from pulling my strings, he helped cut them.

I donned a black leather jacket and with a whiskey bottle in my fist, I proclaimed myself to be a “mean drunk.”  I started returning prims.  I got an IM from Sam’s friend chewing me out for returning all her prims.  I replied, “Yes, how dare I return 5000 prims from My Island that YOU rezzed there Without Asking Me.”  I imagine Walter thought he created a monster when I started examining items and asking, “Whats that?  I didn’t tell anyone they could rez that here.  Its gone.”

And then I turned to the issue of the Wardens.  Like I say, I do owe Yasmin an apology because I’m sure she must have thought the “do it to your face” thing applied here as well.  But since, as I say they were thick as thieves, if I got rid of one I had to get rid of them all.  And Yar and her rumor mongering definitely had to go.  The choice of names was mine alone.  Yes, he knew who I was going to let go.  No, he didn’t pick a single name.

Ultimately, $300 a month with minimal income from a half empty mall was far too much to pay.  I told Walter I intended to close the place down and he encouraged me to delay while he looked around the OpenSim metaverse for a possible place we could move to.  Eventually he found OSgrid and he presented it as a “lifeboat”.  Frankly, the place was a mess on the first visit, but by the second the software had much improved and I saw it not just as a lifeboat but as a place for Stonehaven to live.

The mistake a lot of people make in moving to another grid is to go it alone.  We went there as a group.  Walter, his girls, myself and a few other friends.  All of us had something to bring to the table.  Rather like the old story of stone soup, everyone threw something in.  We started with literally nothing, but we weren’t lacking on most of the skills we needed.  Like the early American west pioneers we went in with nothing and built a home.

So, is Walter the Puppet Master with me now?  Functioning as a group here is just the smart way to do it.  I suppose some mental defective thinks if I don’t rent a server on my own and put up some regions all by myself I must be someone’s sock puppet.  Truth is nobody has their hand up my ass.  The name of the group is Littlefield — that’s the name of the first region Stonehaven was on in SL.  Now tell me I have no sway here.  We’re all equals.  We each bring something to the table.  And here on OS we can do it a damnsight cheaper and with a lot more control over the servers than we ever had in SL.  Ash has the servers all tweaked up so they perform great and lag is only a bad memory.  Its great here and I don’t miss SL, its cost and its drama one bit.  And I’m really lucky to be here with Walter and all the wonderful people in the Littlefield Group.  They’re my family and I am truly blessed by them all.

Goodbye, Lydia

Posted April 10, 2012 by Dirk Mathers
Categories: Uncategorized

I should have posted on this when I first found out, but I’ve been dreading it. Lydia Wycliffe recently passed away after her cancer recurred.

Lydia was at one time a Warden in Stonehaven; someone charged with protecting the guests and protecting the region.  She also built and ran the old prison high over the island.  During the time she ran that place, you could be reasonably sure of a warm welcome by herself or her helpers.  I remember her excitement and enthusiasm while she was building it.  Sadly, real life challenges pulled her away from us.  Lydia had a turn with cancer, which she beat.  She had a difficult pregnancy, carrying twins to birth and losing one shortly thereafter.  She recently had come to OSgrid, was excited by the possibilities to build a new community there and expressed a desire to be there with us.  And then she disappeared.  That’s so often the problem with online friendships; people disappear and you never know what really happened.  For better or worse, we now know what happened.  Her husband had spent time online with her in SL.  He knew how to log in and what her password was.  He came online in Lydia’s avatar to let us know.  Her cancer had recurred.  The end was mercifully swift.

In all the time I knew her she was unfailingly good-natured.  She was a kind soul.  She lived only a few miles from me in RL; I recall threatening to come to her house and put a ball and chain on her and give her husband the key if she didn’t take it easy during her pregnancy.  That made her laugh, but I think having to take it easy during her challenges chaffed against her.  That’s why I say this final bout with cancer was at least merciful in that it was quick.

Her name is now added to those of MiaKate Merlin, Wilma Huckleberry, and Tania Boyd/Janet Manby, on the memorial marker in Stonehaven.  It is my sincere hope I don’t have to add to that marker too often.  To her husband, family and friends, my sincere sympathies.  I guess, in truth, the pain isn’t such a bad thing — it’s the price we pay for the joy of knowing such a person.  And Lydia is definitely worth it.

Lydia Wycliffe is offline.

Dirk M

Happy Anniversary part 4

Posted February 22, 2012 by Dirk Mathers
Categories: Uncategorized


New Years 2008 arrived.  Littlefield was overcrowded, we had what could be interpreted as “child porn” right next door, and I was terrified at the thought of guilt by association.  We needed to get the hell out of Littlefield.

Psi had been trying to talk me into the idea of each of us buying an island and parking them next to each other.  Linden Labs had recently upped the setup cost of a private island to $1675, which had made me choke by itself, but what really worried me was the recurring $295 a month in tier.  As it turns out, I was justified in my fear, but three years early.

Beverly Ultsch offered to occupy 1/4 of the island in return for paying 1/4 of the tier.  That eased my mind some, but I was still worried.  I was not and am not a rich man.  $295 a month was a lot of money.  Unfortunately she was not as good as her word.  I only got rent from her about half the time.  Eventually I reclaimed her quarter, took over the entire island and I lied about the circumstances to protect her reputation.  Since shes chosen to badmouth me since then, I will no longer lie to protect her.  She was a deadbeat tenant and I threw her out.

And now it was time for some karmic payoff.  The free vendor area, which I had started simply as a matter of convenience for the guests and myself was the obvious way to pay for tier on the new island.  I already had a list of potential renters to whom I’d been giving free space.  I’d demonstrated Stonehaven had the traffic that could and did deliver customers to them.  It couldn’t have worked out better if I’d planned it that way.

The Islands

The Hill

Psi's tower - Looking short

Gritting my teeth, I decided to bite the bullet.  Psi ordered her island first.  January 29th, 2008 I ordered mine, and we both submitted letters to Linden Labs waving the restriction on adjacent land being owned by two different people.

The special dispensation from the Linden Gods took a couple of days, but eventually, there it was.  Nothing but a single teleport hub prim.  It was amazing.  A full region and absolutely nothing in it.  Zero lag.  That first night we flew laps around the hill that would eventually expand to become the foundation for the castle.  It was exhilarating.  Like mountain air that had never been breathed by a living thing before.

Psi had already gotten a start.  Her tower, which would eventually become the tallest structure on the two islands, was already up.

Knowing it would be impossible to get any work done with constant visits by the curious, I restricted access and elected Fawn Lovenkraft the photographer of progress.  She stopped by from time to time to take pictures and posted them for the curious back in Littlefield.  Unfortunately she sent very few to me, so those are lost.  I also placed a notecard dispenser and would add comments to the notecard after a day’s work, detailing the latest progress.  Sadly, I only edited the notecard in the object and deleted it without thinking when its job was done.  So my build record is also lost.  If anyone has any copies, please send them to me.  I’d be grateful.

The work commenced and I had a setback almost immediately.  My original plan was to build a village down below the castle and have that be the shopping area.  Psi objected.  She didn’t want to see any shopping from her island.  This would begin the battle between the vendors and the roleplayers that would prove a constant challenge over the next three years.  I built a sky platform for the shopping area and made it too low and put the teleport landing spot in the wrong place.  It was rushed.  I should have sat down and thought it out once my village was torpedoed, but I didn’t.

The work continued, but it was very much a one step forward, two steps back thing.  I made a conscious decision to cut corners to get the place open fast and neaten it later.  Unfortunately, I had a lot of “help” and “advice”.  Once flaws were pointed out to me it was no longer possible to ignore them.  Its a mental deficiency of mine.  Not the only one, but in this case one of the more annoying ones.  I had to go back and re-do things many times.  I’d been hoping to open by Valentine’s Day, but it soon became a wan hope.  Eventually I simply declared I was on strike and halted all work for almost a week.

Eventually it all came together.  One night we stood on the edge of the new patio.  I believe Tat1ana Pera, Fawn Lovenkraft and Psi Merlin were present.  I can’t recall with certainty.  The only major problem was defective leash anchors which I was about to replace.  We held a brief conference.  “Is there any reason we can’t open tonight?” I asked.  No one could come up with an objection, so I quickly replaced the anchors and teleported to Littlefield.  I already had the landmark giver built, loaded and ready in my inventory.  As soon as I rezzed up, I addressed the people present.

“Want to see something cool?”  I rezzed the landmark giver.  “Come get some.”

I started picking up cages from the cage room to bring over to the new place.  Stonehaven Island was open.


Stonehaven Island April 11, 2008

Happy Anniversary part 3

Posted February 20, 2012 by Dirk Mathers
Categories: Uncategorized


The consensus had been that 1/8th of a region was big enough.  That I should take it easy to start with.  The adjacent lot, the NE corner of Littlefield, was still up for sale and this was no time to settle for half measures.  I bought another 1/8th region lot and merged the two for a whopping 1/4 of Littlefield.  The new lot would double my available prims bringing the total to 3750.  My new “prim farm” lot was going to have to stay mostly undeveloped if it were to be of any use.  Happily I had another thought there.  A toy I frequently liked to use back then was my cage thrower.  The problem was not all land owners were okay with someone using one on their land.  Why not throw in a few trees and chunks of ruined wall and make a hunting ground?  Encourage people to use their own cage guns and play capture games?  I built a wall around it the Linden way; one 10m block at a time.

All told, tier for the 1/4 of Littlefield came to $75 a month.  After a lot of cajoling, I did finally put out a donation box.  For the first months tier was covered entirely by me.  Even with later donations almost all of tier was paid from my wallet.

When Mia gets out of there, Lace is in BIG trouble.

I invited friends to come and play.  And they brought friends.  And slowly things began to take off.  Niamh, MiaKate and Lace had volunteered to help me run the place, but they couldn’t always be there.  Over time, I asked a few others to keep an eye on the place.

One day a strange girl showed up in the cage room with a magical sphere she was building.  I thought it was an interesting looking toy and let her set the thing up in the middle of the cage room.  She spent all her time standing next to it.  Her name was Psi Merlin.  It wasn’t long before Psi decided to start buying land in Littlefield herself.  Eventually she ended up owning almost half of Littlefield.  I built a gate at the Southern end of the capture forest between our two lands.

The leash anchors on the front of the castle wall were a popular place to gather and talk

Although the glass lounge did see use, it never caught on as I thought it might.  Instead people tended to congregate near the leash anchors in front of the castle so they could talk with and tease the captives.  Obvious.  I should have realized.

The place grew in popularity and the list of available toys began to grow.  One of the most popular items was Marine’s handcuffs, which had showed up on the scene around the time I was haunting Pak Open Prison.  Another were Daisy’s cages.  These were the items people would ask, “Where can I get those?”  I handed out a lot of landmarks to Marine’s vendor in Pak and Daisy’s cage shop.  Finally I did the smart thing and offered free vendor space to a few select people so I could stop being a human landmark giver and instead simply point and grunt.  Eventually a little vendor area appeared on the West side of the cage room.  Those spaces were invitation only and free for the remainder of our time in Littlefield.

We had our share of drama and griefers, but a real problem developed with a 1/8th region lot in the SW corner.  LaLinda.  It was a kiddie camp where adult and child avatars interacted in… adult activities.  And to make matters worse, some of these child avatars were coming over the wall and exploring Stonehaven!  To say I was alarmed would be an understatement.  With her 1/8th region lot she was taking half the region allotment of 40 avatars, sometimes more.  Between Psi and Stonehaven we were taking half, sometimes more.  And then came the IM from the owner of LaLinda.  She said she’d moved once already and wasn’t moving again and wanted to know what “we” were going to do about it.

My first inclinations were to state the obvious: A) We were here first.  B) Between Psi and myself we owned almost 3/4 of Littlefield, so if anyone was entitled to at least half the avatar load we were.  C) Having child avatars doing adult things with adult avatars was something I didn’t want near me or my guests and would they kindly get the hell out of Littlefield and off SecondLife for that matter.  Several of us had filed complaints, complete with pictures of a graphic nature, but apparently the Lindens didn’t care because nothing was ever done while we were there.  (The crackdown would come later, and after Linden Labs could no longer ignore it.)  However, there was one undeniable truth in her rather ballsy IM — Stonehaven had become popular and we had outgrown Littlefield.

more later


(edit: added pictures.)

Happy Anniversary part 2

Posted February 18, 2012 by Dirk Mathers
Categories: Uncategorized


One night at Deitide, I was showing a young lady the math cage, but encountered a surprise.  This was a prototype Monica had made and didn’t behave exactly as I anticipated.  In the pause of my confusion, Ally walked up, took control of the cage and took over my scene and my victim.  I was totally cut out and the two women went on to play by themselves.

This was the incident that pushed me over the edge.

All around SL I had witnessed all manner of poor behavior and sometimes downright dangerous play.  Just because there is no physical aspect to online play doesn’t mean you can’t still do psychological damage.  There were places a person could go to engage in “non-consensual” play; even though by going there they are consenting.  If “Safe, Sane and Consensual” was good enough for Real Life, why couldn’t those principles apply to “Second Life” as well?  There was a better way to run a BDSM play space and I was going to do it.

One thing was certain; the 2048m lot in Kamet was not going to be big enough.  I began pouring though the land sales, spending hours teleporting around and looking at countless lots.  And then I happened on Littlefield!  A mostly flat, green region that gently sloped downhill to the north.  It was being sold in 1/8th region lots; 8192m each arranged as two rows of four.  If one were to count starting in the upper left corner, I selected lot three; just East of center in the Northern row.

My friends, Niamh Hax, MiaKate Merlin, and Lace Voom were supportive, but Lace especially wasn’t sure it was the best idea to let go of my land in Kamet.  I did see my persistent photographing spy one last time while I was putting the land up for sale.  He was hovering about, looking for the skybox that was already gone.  I never did see him again.  And to this day I still wonder, what exactly did he take away from an experience like that?  I guess I take some comfort in not understanding.

Niamh and I went castle shopping.  I was still undecided, but she had her heart set on Insky Jedburgh’s Gothsburgh Castle.  I loved the choice of textures, but the primwork was a bit sloppy.  The floors weren’t entirely even.  The walls didn’t all match up neatly.  She was in love and her mind was set.  I felt that the uneven surfaces could be justified, at least on a roleplay level, as a grand old place fading from past glory.  In fact, that would even fit in with the general theme that had been growing in my mind.  I bought it, brought it back to Littlefield and rezzed it up.  As advertised, it fit my lot with a little room on all sides.  Knowing absolutely nothing about landscaping or the land tools, I began the work of placing it.

Stonehaven in Littlefield

It was barely up when MiaKate and Lace came to have a look.  And the tradition continued of a griefer visiting.  As Lace stood high atop a walkway, I looked on as a little fellow in a green troll skin flew in and landed in front of her, produced a baseball bat and swatted her into the next lot, to the South.  It took me a few seconds to find the ban list in the About Land menu.  I had never banned anyone other than my photographic spy before, and never in such a situation.  Sadly this would not be the last jerk I’d have to kick out.

Niamh Hax

It was around this time I knew I couldn’t avoid naming the place much longer, but I had no idea what to call it.  I’d nick named my little skybox in Kamet “Refuge”.  I wanted a name that sounded strong.  I was looking for something between gothic horror and Grimm’s Fairytales.  I didn’t have a clue.  Niamh Hax suggested “Stonehaven.”  We quickly searched and there were no groups by that name, no regions by that name, and it was completely clear.  (Sadly, the region name was taken by the time we were ready for our own region.)  The group was created and the plot renamed on the spot.

It became obvious fairly quickly that if I jammed the castle full of cages, I could still only rez a fraction of my growing cage collection.  This brought me back to think once again of my dearly departed Pak Open Prison.  I leveled an area at the Northeast end of the lot and started making the stone box that would become known as the Cage Room.  The sloping ground put the entrance at the Southern end partly underground and gave the impression that the whole thing was a descent underground.

MiaKate Merlin

In the planning of this, I’d asked my friends for their thoughts on things I needed to include.  MiaKate Merlin came up with a list for me.  One item she listed three times was a maze.  She’d even located a free maze generator script in the forums.  Of course this thing was run manually, so if I wanted it to make a new maze every night, I’d have to fix the script to do what I wanted.  As I mentioned, I had been in computer circles since the 70’s.  I’m from the days of the dial-up accoustic modem and the teletype.  “10 PRINT” and so on.  What I knew about LSL and event oriented programming in general wasn’t worth mentioning.  I was in way over my head.  I dived in.  The idea of a glass maze and a lounge where Dominants could relax and watch their submissives run the maze was strong in my mind.  I was strapped for space and the nice flat roof of the Cage Room was just sitting there.  It seemed the logical spot.

And now my truism of SL was raising its ugly head again: In SL, the constraining resource in any build is prims.  If it were today in OSGrid, I’d simply ask Walter if he can up my prim limit.  Or if I were feeling adventurous, I’d open up the INI file and see if I can find where to up it myself.  I didn’t know 15,000 prims per region was an arbitrary number.  I accepted it as a fact that as an owner of 1/8th of a region, 1/8th of 15,000 prims was all I could get.  It was becoming obvious I wasn’t going to have enough prims for the castle, the glass maze and enough cages to fill the cage room.  I needed more prims.

more later


(edit: added pictures and paragraph giving Niamh Hax proper credit for naming the place.)

Happy Anniversary part 1

Posted February 17, 2012 by Dirk Mathers
Categories: Uncategorized

Okay, so last night I was accused of being a slacker because I haven’t posted in so long.  Well, I am a slacker.  So?  🙂

We’re coming up on the anniversary of Stonehaven Island in SL, and also its rebirth on OSGrid.  More information on the exact date(s) of the coming party in OSGrid when those dates are firmed up.  As usual we will be rezzing up a special island for the event, Stonehaven Party Isle.  If you want to attend and haven’t been to OSGrid before, you may want to stop by a day or two early so you can outfit your avatar with skin and clothes at the nearby Littlefield shopping regions.  Five regions of free shopping goodness.

Of course, all this had me asking the usual question of “how many years does this make it now?”  Faulty memory.  I can never recall.  So how did this all get started?

Mr Plastic Hair of 2005

Back in November of 2005 I created my Dirk Massiel avatar.  I’d been known as Dirk in computer circles since the late 1970’s and at that time you simply did not give a computer your correct name.  I had adopted “Dirk M” when “Dirk” was not available on, and later Dirk Mathers.  SL demanded I use one of the approved last names from their list.  I decided to stick with an M name and chose Massiel.

Chorazin Binder (standing), Mia and Lace at Pak Open Prison

Things were fairly bleak on the BDSM front in SL back then, at least for someone who was openly male.  Toys were practically non-existent.  The only practical way to restrain someone was with a cage, and those were rare.  After a short time I publicly stated there was nothing there for me and left.  I’m not sure precisely when, but somewhere around a year later I returned to find attitudes toward males hadn’t really changed a whole lot, but cages were certainly a lot less rare.  It wasn’t long before I found Pak Open Prison where I met Chorazin Binder (wherever you are, I hope you are well), MiaKate Merlin (god rest her soul), and Lace Voom (the definition of “scamp”).  Pak was very much like the Stonehaven cage room.  I began to haunt it.

The Griefer Picture

I also began to collect cages and before long wanted a place I could rez them and perhaps share them with friends.  I wanted a home.  Having only made two things on my first stay in SL, I now got started on the third; my ugly little skybox.  It was entirely built by eye.  It was hideous.  I agonized over it for hours.  I bought a little 2048m patch of land in Kamet and set up my skybox there.  I invited Niamh Hax to the place for some play.  I had her in the math cage and was thinking we were alone, when suddenly here comes a picture offer.  Someone was hovering outside, taking pictures of us.  So much for privacy.  It did however inaugurate a tradition with all land I have ever owned in SL — within the first week I was invariably visited by a griefer.  SL’s welcome wagon.

It didn’t take very long before I discovered a truism of SL.  The constraining resource in any build is prims.  Around this time Chorazin Allen closed Pak Open Prison and opened Deitide.  While it was a much larger area, something about the plastic habitrail space station look of the place didn’t feel right.  I felt a dungeon needed to be on or under the ground.  It should have the look of earth and stone that the new place lacked.  And then came the final impetus…

more later


(edit: added photos)

Onward and Upward

Posted November 18, 2011 by Dirk Mathers
Categories: Uncategorized

I haven’t posted in approximately forever and I don’t know if anyone is even following this anymore anyway, but it seems about the right time to post.

Life here in OSGrid is good. We’re up to four servers and about 40 regions. We just had a couple new people renting an island from us the other day. Nice people. The price of a full region is down to $20 a month. No setup fee. The current version of the OS software is nice and stable. Still no physics engine yet, but I saw a demo of Bullet just recently and it looks very promising. I’d guess we’ll have it here before very long. On the whole, we’re come a very long way in a short time.

Cheap tier, free content and uploads, good people and zero drama. Traffic is still light, but the the people we have here are all good people. I’d rather have one of them than twenty of the sort that used to drop in when SH was on mainland. We’re doing well on content and have been building just for the sheer joy of it.

But now we come into fall. And as it gets cold outside, people are returning to their keyboards and logging into SL. And a lot of them are unhappy with what they find there. I still make a rare visit to SL, and I talk with curious people who come to OSGrid from SL. Apparently a lot of people and places are disappearing from SL. We note with sadness the apparent passing of Chorazin Allen’s Deitide play sim. Apparently Ally B’s club in Liraffe is all that survives of that. His old Pak Open Prison was a favorite hangout of mine in my early SL and the place I met such good friends as Lace Voom and MiaKate Merlin. The cage room in Stonehaven was an attempt to preserve something of its spirit after its closing.

Do I miss SL? Not one bit.

Dirk Mathers