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3D Weather Data Visualization in Second Life 62

An anonymous reader noted that the Second Life media blitz continues by saying that "The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Earth System Research Laboratory (ESRL) with Aimee Weber Studio just unrolled a sneak preview of their educational project in Second Life (due to open in mid November). This appetizer of things to come features the three dimensional visualization of live weather (now on display at the Science Center)." Don't go there expecting that they have like every doppler radar in the US updating in realtime or anything, but it's actually a practical real use for Second Life.
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3D Weather Data Visualization in Second Life

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  • by sgant ( 178166 ) on Sunday October 29, 2006 @10:21AM (#16631714) Homepage Journal
    Has anyone actually used it? It's primitive at best and quite frankly looks unfinished and abandoned by the developers. I'll repeat what I wrote before here about Second Life:

    I've tried this out several times. It's free and even THEN it's not worth it. Now I have about the quickest high-speed internet connection and yet it still just sits there for a few minutes downloading everything you walk or fly through. Go to a new place, it starts downloading again....forever.....Ok, so I know it's not all just about how fast your connection is blah blah, but it's a major problem for me as it NEVER feels like you're in another world. It feels like what it is, bad artwork in a bad 3D environment. Fine, but the people that play and you meet must really be nice right?

    What people? For the most part most of the world of Second Life looks abandoned. When you go to a place that DOES have people gathered around usually ends up just being either virtual prostitution or porn. Or worse, just people sitting in these chairs that generate for them 1 Lindon per hour or something. Just sitting. Or dancing....AFK people sitting and dancing. Wow, fun! The animations are just horrendous. The avatars and 3D graphics are equally bad. What's the point in even loading this up if nothing even remotely looks real nor interacts in a real way? Remove all the crappy graphics and you're left with what we already have on the net! Web sites and instant messages and email. Second Life just seems to add complications to something that didn't need complications.

    Also, don't know what the point is. It's a chat/social/networking thingy that's laggy and unreal. Ok, so basically a instant messenger with badly made 3D avatars that all look like nymphet women wearing very skimpy clothes that still look unreal. We're talking animations and models that are pre Everquest. I felt like I was in some world that was made 15 years or go or something. It also didn't seem finished. It felt like a beta of something that was abandoned about 3 years ago and just barely hanging on.

    I don't know...I just don't get it. Are they trying to be? A chat site? A site that has info for companies? Virtual storefronts? The thing is, the Web and instant message clients already do this...and MUCH better too! They had a concert there with Suzanne Vega and did anyone see it? It's about as dynamic as watching grass grow. I mean it. There are videos of it out there on the web from Youtube, see for yourself. What I can't understand is how this is better than seeing a live video of Vega singing and playing. Also, what was stopping some idiot from walking up on the stage with a naked avatar? Did they put some invisible wall up between the performer and the "audience"?
  • by spyrral ( 162842 ) on Sunday October 29, 2006 @11:07AM (#16631994) Journal
    I don't get why we get such a disproportionate number of Second Life stories on /.

    For those who have never tried it: don't bother, it's not that cool. Unless you really enjoy 3d modelling and scripting, it offers nothing over regular text chat.

    In 10 years, we'll have the network and the machines to handle everything that the Second Life guys are trying to do, and they'll be hailed as "pioneering" and "ahead of their time". But honestly, it kind of sucks.

"Mach was the greatest intellectual fraud in the last ten years." "What about X?" "I said `intellectual'." ;login, 9/1990