Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Becky's Futurecast

By Becky "Sha" Shamen

   With the elections and all the turkeys behind us, we begin looking forward to the holiday season and the end of another year. December is a time for recalling things from our past and making hopeful predictions of what the future will bring.
   This year had plenty of ups and downs, but we also had two rewarding, memorable experiences. For a half century, I have been an amateur esoteric scientist. I took delight in telling friends things that science didn't know, but would soon discover. My favorite stories were 1) that the true shape of the universe would be found to be a giant donut and 2) that scientists would soon begin to prove there is a god (or supreme designer). Admittedly, these are some fantastic topics, but in SL, with it's preponderance of sci-fi nerds, they are great "ice-breakers" and have generated many great chat sessions. This year, I found a number of videos, on line, that science was now beginning to echo my theories. One group of scientists had even shown where our galaxy, the Milky Way, was located on the donut. My joy was short lived, when I remembered that I had never written them down and so could not prove that I had predicted them in advance. Oh well, there's still a silver lining. Now that science was accepting my introductory logic, I can point out some of the logical extensions to the theories. Hopefully, by getting it on paper this time, I can enlighten the world or, at the very least, entertain the nerds among our readers.
   We aren't trying to write a book here, so we will just give some short thumbnails of the theories that we think science will be discovering in the near future.
   There is Energy and there is Form, a.k.a. Matter. We keep finding increasingly smaller bits of matter, but there seems to be no end in sight as too how small or big matter can be. Where is the dividing line between Energy and Matter? If Energy can not be created or destroyed, it is Eternal. What is causing the eternal to be confined by the dimensions of time/space? The connection is neither and both finite and infinite. It is only a mental image. Science will come up with a math formula that will take a whole blackboard to write, but this same thought can also be expressed in the form of a simple, short sentence, such as "To be or not to be..." or "I am becoming that which I will become". Words and numbers aren't even required, as long as you "get the picture" in your mind.
   If you ask most people what the fourth dimension is, they will, incorrectly, say Time. If the first dimension is "here to there", the second dimension is perpendicular to it or "left and right". The third dimension will be perpendicular to the first and second or "up and down". Keeping with this series, the fourth dimension will be perpendicular to all of the first three or "bigger and smaller", or Scale. This understanding of dimensions may seem unimportant, but as the world's thinking begins to take it into account, many new doors will open to science.
   Science observes the behavior of the matter in the universe and finds it behaves like there is much more matter than they can see. Science will soon discover that it is like the matter that we can see, but with an added twist, which they will call "Nutation" or wobble. If you spin energy, like a top, that spinning form is what we call matter. If we could "freeze-frame" these units of matter, we would see that the spinning energy is never evenly distributed around the center of rotation. The imbalance of energy is like putting a bowling ball in a washing machine, during the spin cycle. Every unit of matter has a slight wobble to it. Although the frequency or rate of nutation can have a wide spectrum of speeds, there are certain speeds that will be harmonically in tune with other speeds and they will stand apart, like notes in a musical scale. You could be standing next to a person or object and not be able to see it, if the matter in your eyeballs is wobbling at a different rate than the matter that the person or object is made from. Like the spokes on a bicycle wheel, they are there, but you can’t see them. Operators of web fed printing presses, like those used for printing newspapers, use strobe lights to see the printed images as they speed by. Science will soon develop machines to view other forms of matter. Individual humans can develop the ability to see other forms of matter, because their bodies are made up of matter of the different nutational rates. There are various yoga exercises that can help develop an awareness of other grades of matter.

   The speed of light is not a constant. It is already known that light slows down as it gets near mass. What is yet to be discovered is that light also changes speed relative to the scale of the matter being looked at. If you could shrink down in size, to where a single quark is the size of the whole universe, it would take light the same amount of time to cross from one side of the quark to the other as it does to cross the entire universe. Scientist will figure this out, using theory, because they can never build actual machines that can zoom in to the needed frame of reference. Thought is the only thing in the universe that can travel faster than light.
Editor's Note: Following handing in this article, Becky informed me that due to circumstances in real life she felt she would be unable to write further articles for at least until after the end of the year, possibly longer. Hopefully after a short period of rest she will be able to write again.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

A Very Unexpected Thanksgiving Dinner

By Mylie Foxclaw

Finally, I would have the perfect thanksgiving in my life.  I had a date and I would prepare a romantic thanksgiving dinner for the two of us.  I had the menu in mind; in fact I had planned each and every single detail and could already visualize it all!

But nothing went according to the plan.  Since I wanted everything to be perfect, I needed to get started early.  The mashed potatoes and dessert were ready and the turkey was in the oven.  This was the first time I was cooking turkey and I had googled so many recipes to be sure I was on the right track.  I checked the oven and saw that it was nearly ready.  I started to tidy around quickly and then I saw the saucepan on the table.  Oh no!  I had forgotten about the stuffing!

I was no pro in the kitchen but I needed to fix this mess.  I quickly switched the oven off and took the turkey out.  “Let’s add the stuffing fast and put it back in the oven!” I muttered to myself.  I started to get to work when my phone beeped.  I checked the text, smiling to myself.  It was him and he sent me a lovely message saying he could not wait to see me tonight.  I continued to stuff the turkey and was almost done when I heard the beeping sound again.  I looked around for my phone, wondering where it was.  I checked under the table, behind the saucepan, over the fridge, etc.  That’s when I heard it starting to ring, I looked around and screamed in horror as I realised that I had dropped my phone in the stuffing and then I was stuffing the turkey, so it could be inside!  I panicked and started to remove all the stuffing, knowing the clock was ticking!

“If I can spot it, it will be much easier!” I exclaimed and I leaned down and tried to peek inside.  I inched closer until my cheek was rubbing against the warm turkey.  I did spot something lighting inside but I was not sure.  I parted the turkey’s legs so I could get a better look.  I pushed my head inside and I heard it ring.  But that did not come from my turkey!  It was a distant sound.  I started to pull out but got stuck!  It took me a long time until I was finally able to get my head out of that turkey!  As I emerged out, gasping for breath, I noticed that my phone was in the saucepan next to my now tattered turkey.

This was awful!  I called the nearby butcher’s shop to order another turkey but they ran out of stock.  I started to google quickly and saw an advert that said turkey delivery and immediately called and gave them my address.  I went to wash my face and the doorbell rang.  I grabbed my purse and quickly paid the delivery boy who told me he left the turkey in my yard.  I thanked him and went out to fetch it.  That’s when I almost fainted. They sent me a live turkey!

I called the shop and they told me that they were no butchers.  As I checked my watch, I realised that I was running out of time and this turkey would have to do.  I went to fetch my knife and starred at the turkey nervously.

 “Listen, I’m sorry but I have to do this or my thanksgiving dinner will be a real flop,” I muttered to it as I stood there with my knife.

“Glu Glu!!” the turkey responded.

“Okay… here we go!” I shouted and took a few steps back before charging forward, screaming like a real warrior but as the knife got closer to the turkey, I froze in my tracks.  “I can’t do this!” I cried out, tears filling my eyes as I dropped to my knees in front of it, “You’re too cute!”

I dropped the knife and stared at the turkey while it continued to cry out, “Glu Glu! Glu Glu!”

I decided to name the turkey, Glu-Glu.  I checked the time and decided that I could order pizza instead; my date would not mind.  That’s when my phone beeped.  “Nooooo!” I cried out as I read the text.  He got an emergency at work and could not come!  I was so upset.

I stared at Glu-Glu and she stared back at me. Well, I did not want to spend thanksgiving alone, so I went to get ready and Glu-Glu and I had a nice thanksgiving dinner that consisted of dessert and coffee.  It was definitely not the thanksgiving I wanted but Glu-Glu and I had a nice time and we decided to fight for the turkeys rights!

Happy Thanksgiving,

Mylie Foxclaw

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Going Out With A Bang: Madpea Blows Up UNIA Game Area

By Bixyl Shuftan

For about a year and a half, fans of Madpea could play UNIA, an inworld horror game that bedeviled those trying to get through the grounds and it's various monsters such as zombie chickens. Originally slated to close on July 31st, the end was postponed until Halloween, October 31st, with those who hadn't tried it yet offered the gaming HUD for 1 Linden dollar, "With many fond memories of zombie chickens, killer scarecrows and mad cows, it will be sad to see the doors finally close on what was Second Life’s biggest game.  But as we say goodbye to what was the biggest game in Second Life, we also can’t wait to tell you what’s coming next!"

But instead of just simply shutting down, Kiana Writer and her Madpeas decided to make it's end a public event: blowing up the sim in front of everyone who wanted to watch, "Let it rain zombie chickens and dead mad cows.... bring your weapons.. and come over to see how one of the most loved games in the SL history will burn to the ground and only live in our memories!"

Heading over to Madpea Base, and getting to the group of people near the entrance of a drive-in, we found ourselves under assault by zombies, the nearby buildings on fire, and a few cow carcasses nearby. Not far away was a huuuuuge glowing giant chicken. On the drive-in entrance was a countdown clock, with the song "It's the Final Countdown" playing in the last minute. When it reached zero, heck broke loose with buildings falling apart, trees flying through the air, and the sim flooding. To get out of the water, we had to hop on or sit on the drive-in entrance. From there, we saw the place continue to blow up, as more songs like "Let the Bodies Hit the Floor" and "It's the End of the World As We Know It" played.

There were more than a few comments about the end. One remarked, "Unia, I was here when you took your first breath, and I'm here as you take your last." Another commented he had been gaming at the last minute to get one item that eluded him, "Doesn't matter that world ends and angry zombie chases me, I need to get that item. it fits with my socks."

Madpea hasn't stated yet what game will take UNIA's place, but no doubt it's fans will be anxiously waiting.

Bixyl Shuftan.