My Second Life Experience

Second Life Logo

The Global Geek Podcast recently announced they will be messing around with Second Life and I thought it would be a good time to recount my own experience within the virtual world.

It wasn’t too long ago when Juliaroy from Twitter posted a message asking for anyone interested to hop into Second Life to check our her estate. Since I wanted to give Second Life a try after hearing all sorts of stuff about it in the news, I decided to download the client and jump in. Once I logged in, I had to complete a series of tests, sort of like a walk through or beginner’s guide tutorial which taught me how to move around, how to fly, and just how to get around this new world.

After completing the tutorial, Julia transported me directly to her Second Life house. It was pretty fancy seeing images from the real world plastered on her walls and even on her computer monitor. After the tour, Julia logged off and I managed to spend an hour editing, then dressing my avatar. Once I thought I had a decent looking guy, I decided to give the rest of the Second Life world a tour.

The thing I noticed first was that, unless you know a ton of people, Second Life is boring. Also, based on what I could see, some of the only places to have a congregation of people were the dance clubs. The dance clubs were pretty cool at first. People were dancing, music was streaming live, and weird lights were flashing abroad. After doing the dance thing for awhile, I started to wonder why so many people would be wasting their time, sitting in front of their computer monitor watching themselves and others dance the night away.

Second Life Dancing

So after dancing my own Second Life away for awhile, the entire Second Life thing started to get pretty boring. At this point, I decided to join the DARK SIDE. I undressed my avatar, made him fat, ugly, and PINK and kicked off the party. Apparently, people hate it when you run around and push other avatars off the dance floor. After doing this for a little while, the dance club security people would kick me out. I’d run right back in and push them around some more. Then, the security people would ban me from the territory. When your banned from a territory, there is a giant RED square that surrounds the place that prevents me from even getting close to the club. That’s ok. I went to a few more dance clubs I could find.

After being banned from 5 dance clubs for running around naked, pushing avatars off the floor, I found a particular club which allowed something I’ve never seen before. I noticed an avatar that was able to SMACK the ass of another avatar. It even played the sound of a SMACK. This was just too funny and I had to give it a try myself. So I took my ugly, pink, naked avatar and walked up next to a male avatar. I looked down at the posterior of this guy and double clicked the mouse button. Each time I did I heard “SMACK” and the text “BLABLA has smacked BLABLA’s ass”. This was hilarious. The male avatar kept telling me to stop, as he doesn’t swing that way. He kicked me out of the club but I ended up turning around and coming right back, smacking his ass hundreds of times before he kicked me out again. After a couple of times, he finally wised up and banned me. I tried to take screen shots but they never worked out to anything.

After that banning, I calmed down from my half hour of insane laughter and proceeded to uninstall Second Life. I understand some of the applications that Second Life may have such as, board meetings or some other cause. But I often times wonder what those people could be doing to benefit their first life. The graphics in second life suck no matter how high your graphic settings are. The entire world is based on 2D which is why it looks so bad yet, thats one of the reasons why Second Life is so mod-able. It’s just a world based on textures. In the end, Second Life is nothing more than a virtual social network. And like most of the other social networks, if your anti-social or don’t know the right people or have a ton of friends, Second Life becomes yet another waste of time.

Social Networking Baby Boomers

According to this NBC report, every 7 and a half seconds, someone in the U.S. turns 50 years old. That is quite a lot of people. These baby boomers are being looked at as seasoned surfers. There are now social networking sites that are catering to this generation such as BOOMJ, BOOMERTOWN, and EONS. Looks like all of this social stuff isn’t just for 20 somethings anymore.

Icon Based Social Bookmarking Plugin

m Logo

Aaron over at has published his first ever WordPress Plugin entitled ‘I Love Social Bookmarking‘. I love social bookmarking gives your readers a chance to submit your site/articles to various social bookmarking services via a tidy drop-down list.

Screenshot of the plugin in action:

Screenshot Of The Plugin

Version 0.1b is a pre-release trial version released to eliminate bugs and identify popular feature requests before a general public release. If you’d like to help me test this version please install it and let me know of any problems you encounter or additional features you’d like to see included.

Personally, I enjoy using the ShareThis plugin as it provides many more options than Milienzo’s plugin, including the option of emailing the post. However, this is his first ever plugin so it will be interesting to see where he takes this. Milienzio, my advice is to look at what ShareThis has to offer and see if you can improve upon that.

EdTags Targeted Education Information Logo

EdTags looks like it could be a valuable resource for students and educators alike. Edtags is a social bookmarking site where users tag anything having to do with education whether it’s a podcast, essay, or web related news. Here is a video I found highlighting the various aspects of this new service. Their website is but I have had trouble connecting to the site.

Netscape Finalizes Changes Logo

Netscape is reporting that they have completed their planned changes to the website. According to Tom Drapeau, the Propeller social news experience will not be going away. Instead, within the next few weeks, Propeller content will be seen on both the portal and AOL News. Netscape also goes on to apologize about the recent performance issues, assuring users that they are hard at work trying to figure those out.

Tom did give us a little bit of insight into their new social news platform:

In the near future, we will be able to share information about our new social news platform, which we are extremely excited about. It will bring together the best of all worlds: a world class design team, an advanced website platform, and a host of new and interesting ways to enjoy social news

Keep an eye on It will be interesting to see if this site is successful or not.

Solve Your Web2pt0 Identity Crisis With Onxiam LogoCreating accounts on new Web 2.0 sites is the easy part as most sites only require an email address and a username however, managing all of those accounts can be tough.


Onxiam pronounced (ON-X-I-AM), a Web 2.0 service aimed at consolidating all of your online identities into one simple page makes managing all of those accounts a breeze by allowing you to promote a single identity which provides links to all of your other online identities. Simply put, this service places your online presence onto one page so that instead of telling friends and family where you are and what your username is on a particular website, you simply send them one link which provides all of the information they need such as your username on a particular service.

Onxiam was created by Kevin Poulsen based out of Chicago, Illinois.

As I joined more and more online communities, I found myself constantly saying to people “On [website] I am [name].” This was getting tiresome, and I thought that there just had to be a better way of promoting myself to my friends, my family and to the online world as a whole.

I looked around but didn’t find anything, so I decided to build it myself. “Kevin Poulsen”


The Account Process:

Setting up a new account is fairly straight forward. As with most Web 2.0 sites you need to provide an email address, username and a password. Once the supplied information is provided you will automatically be logged into the site and will be presented with a page that provides a complimentary greeting. From this page, you can add what Onxiam calls IDENTITIES to your account.


The Social Aspect:

The Onxiam Invite service which provides a way for registered users to invite their friends to join

Although Onxiam fails to provide a way for registered users to communicate with each other through the service itself, knowing your friends identities on various services such as AIM or SKYPE allows you to get in contact with those individuals, indirectly because of Onxiam. If you perform a search and discover that one of your friends is not listed as being a registered member, be sure to send them an email invitation through the Onxiam invite service. The invitation will contain some generic text stating that you would like that person to join the service. Registered users can also add websites that are not already listed in the site directory. Once a site is added, it is instantly available for other users to use however, items such as icons and the ability to link directly to user profile pages does take some time to be added to the site.


Identity Crisis:

One thing to keep in mind while creating your identities is that you do have the option of making them PRIVATE which is great considering you may not want people following you around the net EVERYWHERE you go. From your Onxiam home page, click on the ADD link which is underneath the text MY INDENTITIES. The drop-down list contains what seems like a never ending list of all of the different sites and services currently in the Onxiam database. Once you select the site your apart of, type in your username for that site into the box on the right hand side. If you want this entry to be private, be sure to uncheck the box labeled PUBLIC. If you fail to uncheck this box, the account information will be listed in your public profile. Once you have that information typed in, press the ADD button. Your identity for that specific website will now be listed on your Onxiam home page.


My Opinion

This service is incredibly easy to use and although some new competition in this consolidating space has recently arrived ( Onxiam provides a simple, clear way of putting your entire online presence onto one page. So far, I have yet to come across a service that makes this process any easier.

One of the disconcerting things about this service is that the development blog has gone silent. The last post published on the dev blog dates back to October 31, 2006. Although Keven has built a service that in many ways can run on it’s own, it would be nice to see a fairly updated development blog to prevent users from creating a mentality that the service is dead. Another surprising fact is that the service is still free to use and is void of advertising. I’m not sure how much of being ad free will play into Onxiam’s future but it is refreshing to see a simple service that is not plastered with ads.



I wanted to take this opportunity to thank Adam Jackson from for pointing me to this site. In a recent DailyTechTalk Talkcast I asked Adam if there were any Web 2.0 site/service consolidation services out there and this is the one he pointed me to. Good choice Adam.

On my quest to join all of the Web 2.0 sites and services on the net, Onxiam is like a godsend to me. I think of it as being everywhere on the net from one place. Be sure to bookmark if you have the chance to keep tabs on me. If you have an even better solution be sure to post it in the comments.