• The other side of Smokey Hills


    In the light of recent events surrounding the bannings of Smokey Hill, I thought it was something I had to place on my personal blog to place a little bit of yin to the yang and to the talk surrounding the issues. I am not here to start pointing fingers, nobody is doing that, but in this story there is a moral to the tale. I believe there should be two sides to a story and that both sides are versed to make a proper conclusion.

    We should start with some home truths and it is the fact how there was ever a mediation to this scenario to the first place. The reason it started was the fact two people had very differing views on a subject. Will they see eye to eye, will they ever try to see each others points of view? – I dunno. Time will tell, but it was because I was upset as when I offered to give more information to another, he then turned it into no more than “a trial on my own views” and not so much of the issues at hand. I spoke to Andy about it, he saw it as unfair and thus amends were made and kindly went off to contact the people involved to sort the issues out.

    In my mind my only reasons to push this was because (a), I was annoyed I had to leave a place because of no fault of my own and that someone had spoiled the experience for me. (b) – I am totally sick to the back teeth of the same issues in why kids are banned from places time and time again. (c) because Smokey Hills looks to be a fantastic place for kids to have adventures in its own RP lore. Dear god, SL kids need places to go and they need places with diversity and a chance to make a place their own or at least be free to explore. Let me further explain...

    As a kid who has been involved with a few RP sims, it's interesting to hear what S.L adults say about kids offhand. When you have R.P places that allow kids, it's great fun and you appreciate when developers open the gates to S.L kids when others are slamming doors in faces. Some of us like to push the boundaries a little more and work hard to open up places for kids to join (where perhaps they were not welcomed or thought of as compatible). When they do it's a fantastic achievement and I find any S.L kid who ventures to do that are the bravest souls, simply because they are independent and open to try new experiences for themselves without having someone or some group holding their hand.

    Changing opinions especially to people who have a distrust for S.L kids is not easy, but through my experience it can be done. Many of my best buddies on S.L were once self confessed child haters, so yeah go guess :P Like most things, opinions and views can be changed, but they are changed through empathy, understanding and accepting of a diverse views and more important - fitting into a scenario or place. The way opinions are broken is by giving people a chance with an open book, give them the opposite of what they expect and that is to show that S.L kids can be very thoughtful, funny, imaginative,very sociable and more than eager to interact with other communities far removed from their own.

    In light of the dramas, I am really pleased to hear it's a very mixed story, quite a few S.L children have come back from the Smokey Hills Sims less than 12 hours ago, saying they met Andy and had some nice conversations with him. Now I want to make it perfectly clear, I am not here to start some immature “he said, you said" battle of words, people are entitled to opinions and even if we do not agree. Every opinion is a valid opinion no matter if we like them or not and they all have a place in the wall of facts. The only thing I have to say about that is if some kids visited there, talked to Andy quite openly and for a good amount of time and then in contrast some kids from one group had a more negative experience... then I would be inclined to ask why?

    I have been watching what has been said on feeds, to be honest I really feel uncomfortable with it in some way as the way I read it, to me its subconsciously trying to discredit anyone who actively did not support a certain sides views. To me that is totally awful and to be honest really biased and clique ridden. I heard reports from others that Andy had a number of kid avatars I.Ming him negatively for his decisions, that is also so not cool. If anything that is pack attacking without so much as a stop to sit and get all the information at hand.
    Worst of all is the denial to even remotely talk or discuss the issues that lead to those differing opinions. Like it or not , these opinions exist and I guess it should be spelled out.

    Many S.L kids I know are really industrious, hard working, creative individuals and that’s the great thing about being an S.L kid. We also place so much colour into the S.L environment, some of us spend tons of money into the S.L economy also. So yeah I do get a bit annoyed when those of us are taking time to improve our lives here, are hard working and constantly developing our S.L lives to have more richer experience are suddenly stopped, whacked with a wooden spoon and told to go home for simply turning up at places because we are S.L children, but it smarts far more to find out that other kids caused the issues which to be brutally honest could have been easily avoided. OK brace yourselves, cause some home truths coming !!

    I am not afraid to say there are a percentage of kids who don’t act like kids, they are instead “mini adults”. I don't mean they don't baby talk etc, most kids I know are not child like per se, they are often a mix of half imagination yet still keeping their R.L personalities. I am not talking about cursing either, as a character I do curse occasionally (what kid does not). What I am talking about is some kids who really don't know how to act in public and with strange people they don't know, sometimes often talking in sexual double meanings, sometimes really overly suggestive conversations that is only comfortable with like-minded people. And yes, often that suggestive talks often combines with wearing as less clothes as possible and always almost boys.
    I am sure some kids will know and agree with exactly what I am talking about and agree it always always directs from the same sorts of people who do collate in pockets. I am not saying that anything like that happened in Smokey Hills or the group concerned, I am sure that never went on ( or hope it never) but I am fully aware of how some boys can act in public at times. This is nothing new, most kids know it and those who deny it are either part of it or possibly living in massive denial but nobody can say it does not exist. And this is why a good many adults are put off by S.L children, simply because when they see such things happening in openly, then its pretty much the self fulfilling prophecy when people view S.L children , especially those who have had no real contact or meetings with them before. Of course I myself have encountered far worse, which is why I am at liberty to say things as I find it.

    A good example of this happened in the RP sims of Innsmouth a while back, where it was well documented that "a bunch of boys wearing skimpy shorts and attire not suited to children” started appearing in the sims and hanging there and acting in an “un-childlike manner”. I know this because I have a few adult buddies who run R.P there, they had casually commented about it when discussing a project completely unrelated to Innsmouth; but on the topic of including children in R.P and concerns people have when allowing them. Even when you have child centred or child inclusive R.P, there are standards to uphold & there is still a code of conduct. Break it and you, your friends and any other kid after you will be told to leave. It's happened before on other sims, so it's important to remember everyone is responsible for others in regards to how you act as first impressions and beyond. We want more places not less !!

    I noticed a lot of talk on semi nudity came into the discussion too, so I will also say something on the matter. Now to me there is nothing wrong with getting into swimwear and on the beach to swim and play like all kids do, nothing sexualized about it. But again we are kids and if you know your history and your environment, you know exactly what past issues surrounding kid avatars have been. So you learn pretty quickly how to dress and act appropriately in the right places and don't put yourself up to be questioned.
    To be fair Linden Labs don't exactly help that hysteria either, for example at one time they had some “ anti nipple propaganda “ for skin creators that as soon as they displayed a nipple it's considered erotic ??. In fact a few child skin creators were approached by Linden Labs at one time to remove upper body shots stating said content was not TOS compliant. Ok so I am being slightly flippant but honestly... what message is that giving to others who are already fearful of kids as it is? Linden Labs say pictures of nipples are bad, oh wait half naked kids on my sim . Can you see where I am going on this?
    It's not to say going about shirtless on a beach or wearing swimwear is bad – it's clearly not, but the mixed messages and grey areas certainly don’t help. I find that laughable to be honest, kids play in swimwear on the beach in Real Life so why is it suddenly an issue in Second Life. To be honest I don't think it is an issue people just have RL hangups and they vent it wildly. I have swimwear and I play on the beach but I think its more to do with where and when more than anything on this occasion. For example... when I go to new places, I dress accordingly and if it's a designated beach and everyone is doing it, then I feel free enough to go out and surf etc.
    The same goes for sim rules, I always check to see if I am allowed and if I am... what rules I have to adhere to – be it be in period dress/ clothing appropriate for the sim etc. It's all about the right actions for the right scenario. You would not go stripping off in your undies in the middle of your grandmothers birthday party just as she is cutting her cake - “SURPRISE GRANDMA.”. errr NO!!,... so why would you do it in a public sim where others are not bathing or has no facilities to do that? It's all about doing the right things at the right times and being socially aware, simple.

    I will make a valid point that to me is also interesting and that is for all the kids I heard visiting Smokey Hills, no other kid I know or heard of started throwing clothes in wild abandon and swim on a whim. There were towers to climb, huts to explore, adventures to be had. I am sure also those kids who did meet with Andy and had some good rapport with him would have asked if they could swim too but I think most were too impressed with the sim to explore. Ok so Andy freaked out, that's all – perhaps he could have handled it better but in fairness, the group also had a responsibility and could have also perhaps placed their decorum a bit better. Explore, look around have fun but keep the clothes on. Want to go for a swim?, then ask permission from the owners of the sim you are on and see how they feel about it. When I was there the last thing on my mind was to take my clothes off and swim... so I dunno horses for courses I guess“ shrugs” All I know is I am 97% sure if it was me and my friends at that sim, we would not have had the same issues, simply because I guess we have a different train of thought to how we explore and hang out.

    What is important is people have to remember that every S.L kid is an ambassador for other children when you visit sims. You do your homework if it's a group visit, you play neutral until you are aware of your surroundings, you ask permissions and you check out rules if they have any and above all... you act accordingly. Any sim I go to these days I always check for rules first or ask the sim owner, it's just common politeness and respect to do so. So when I do say I feel Andy was caught unawares, I really think he was and panic set in. He started seeing a group of kids flinging clothes off and possibly recalled stories he has heard along the grapevine and made an assumption. So before we flippantly say its them having a hang-up, think again.
    We have to realize why some people are scared of S.L children and not simply throw our hands in the air and say “ its them, they have the issues , its not us”. When you have a lot of bad press as S.L kids have had, it gets around and it's hard to shake that off. In turn such stories turn into moral panics and pretty soon the peoples fears of losing your sim, your investments and your hard work is suddenly bundled into a stark reality on the back of one very dumb and dubious kid. So it's up to us as S.L children to do far more to alleviate such bad impressions and replace them with more positive ones. You won't help that by boycotting places and labelling people as no better than anti SL kid trolls. People will just label us as trouble makers and ban us outright and that's not what we need right now.

    So in honesty I can see why he reacted the way he did and nobody has the right to really argue with that, other than perhaps as childen we should be doing far more to be understanding in what adults think of us. We should also be collectively amending what we can through information and advice who don't know or are misinformed.

    All I know is from the children I talked to and Imed me after the last feed entries, it had been been mostly positive from what was said about Andy. So I am quite glad he has some people out there sticking up for him. Some other kids might be smarting to think other children are taking his side, don't be. It's logical, you will always get divide in such events. I am just quite surprised just how many differing opinions there are on this, perhaps the S.L kids community is not so clear cut and one sided as one thinks and I think that's awesome. The reason for that is you can perhaps fool adults but you cannot fool S.L kids who have a wider knowledge of the community that surrounds them and the experiences they have gathered over the years to make their own educated guesses, so it's really not people like Andy some people have to reassure, perhaps the beginning of that has to be far closer to home - it's the kids who are actively disagreeing and more importantly why.

    All I hope is people don't get so sure of themselves and learn from this scenario, so that such things like this don't happen again so soon and in frequent repeats. There is as I said a lot of division on this, so yeah it's interesting to say the least. As for Smokey Hills... well time will tell if it ever will allow kids in its streets. I for one hope it does & will allow children as part of its roleplay structure. From what I hear it has some really nice plans forthcoming for the town. As for the situation itself, well change won't happen unless people realize the parts everyone had to play in that scenario and perhaps they openly apologize for the parts they played. Let's hope they do and lets move on.

  • ZiSP V- The Jordster strikes back

    HL Jordy

    It had been a long hard time in the ZiSP project, in fact there was a time I thought in all seriousness it was going to die a very horrible death. In the past 8 months we had lost our beloved engineer Crias Rowland to R.L time. We had high hopes for a replacement while Crias took some much needed time off, but those who we asked were either too busy and even left us for months without ever getting back on a job we left them on, without so much as a prim link or graphic as proof there was ever a development continuation. To say feelings in the camp were down, that does happen when people promise a job and then let you down after months of wasted time.

    Finding people within Second Life who have a love for creativity and more importantly, see the value of co-operative ventures are all too hard to find in S.L. What is even more rare are finding those with a real eye for detail and want to take on private hire for a job well done. These are the problems that project developers face continually in Second Life, as you have at some-point to deal with a business that's based dealing with people behind avatars and not at face value. With that it is common to find people become "detached" to others and the responsibilities you give when placing an agreement are little more than throwaway. People like Crias are super rare, as he gave me a chance to develop the beginnings of what will become a worthwhile development and I thank my lucky stars I met him. I miss Crias very much, not just as our ZiSP engineer but also as a very cool person in Second Life which are so rare to find. ZiSP was in effect very much part of him as well as myself. I wish you all the best Crias and hope you come back to us soon, we miss you lots.

    It was perhaps some time after by pure chance that the mysterious company Qyxwerk came on the scene. After explaining to Qyx about the issues ZiSP was facing, we came to an agreement that ZiSP was a worthwhile venture to continue and that those who were failing us in Crias's absence really were subject to being lightweights. The reason it was worth saving is because I had a plan, that was one to create not only a place that was very much in theme to celebrating the nostalgic sleek designs of the Atompunk/ retro future genre, but that it would be a living world full of life and community.
    In order to do that, we needed a reason for people to live and immerse themselves in that world. That way was clear that roleplay would be a big part of that and as crazy it is to ever begin to develop such a sideline, I was focused on doing it. In order to do that we needed action and to start that off, Qyx and I decided to work on my Electrozapper design. The reason was to create a weapon we could use to add a danger element to additional content we add to the living environment. The resulting creation was the ZA-P9 Neutronizer Raygun, an awesome looking raygun/ blaster that screams 1950's nostalgic sci-fi. It is a perfect addition to the existing classical suits we created in the range, especially now that Crias (as his last gift to customer requests) remodeled the existing suits to include a separate helm, which is now for sale as the V2 space suit.

    It took over half a year to finish the ZA-P9 Neutronizer. This was not due to the actual gun creation but again to the very apparent issues of finding good professional minded people in Second Life who take commitment and hired project work seriously. Eventually after much banging heads off walls, Qyx managed to patch the existing spaghetti script I had commissioned in tune (with some help with a few well known Second Life script geniuses). The ZA-P9 aka Phase 2, was recently completed in the ZiSP story, it was very hard work and a major test to sanity, but we got there eventually and we are very proud of what we have achieved. But these are the risks you take becoming a project leader in Second Life, it rarely is fun and can be a lot of stress when something goes wrong. But when you do find great people, its a really rewarding experience and one I hope will continue as we move on in the ZiSP story and we were are a little baby step closer to out next goal. That next goal is environment and more importantly, bringing fans of retro sci-fi together in Second Life, in a world that is well created and true to the art styles of 1950's retro sci-fi.

    Why are we going towards a roleplay environment?, well for three reasons.
    1- because everyone said there was nowhere to use their space suits in.
    2- that for whatever reason, people are unwilling to invest time in new ventures that shy away from genres that do not guarantee a specific fan base demography.
    3- that a roleplay environment was for me very important.

    Having spent 4 years venturing in various Second Life roleplay environments, it was something that I enjoyed immensely but in all my incarnations in roleplay,internal politics was always an issue. Those issues were the kind that happens when people simply arrive out the blue, with very little in the way of direction and mentoring. Newcomers are faced with having to cut a name for themselves, often in a very close and at times clique ridden environments. It is very much like being a very small fish in a pool of sharks. Sure, this is no different from life but in the roleplay places I have been to, the old hands can be very quick to mock newcomers. Some even feel it is a newcomers right to learn the ropes and ask compete strangers yet in the same breath, not offer guidance and mock them for not knowing anything. It's a two edged sword when people arrive in an environment with no integral social branches to settle into, there can be no guidance and it quickly develops into a " them and us" situation and no care on the individual who appears on a roleplay venture. So how is one supposed to learn and integrate?

    My other pet hate are residential/ roleplay sims. Yes... residential plots are important to a roleplay sims survival and economy but when there are mixed messages (and less than clear-cut stance on what an environment actually is), there is a danger that it can turn again to rank pulling, trying to call shots in respects to how much land you owe and how much that developer depends on you for the upkeep of the place. I have seen that happen and it did not sit pretty as i watched a community slowly die through others selfish actions and more so. In environments where it is residential first and roleplay as its additional bolt on, often roleplay is quickly affected by real life things such as moods, opinions, drama etc. When that happens a community quickly loses its focus, people get apathetic and lazy and when the need/ want for material roleplay trinkets become more important than the actual roleplay itself. That is when roleplay communities fail and its important that such ventures are clear on their roleplay goals from the beginning.

    So how will the colony world differ? Well in a variety of ways, some of which I won't spill here as recipes should be close to ones heart at times. I would be safe in saying that every persons beginning will be introduced as a true to life scenario and ..., everyone's character will be encouraged by the development team to expand and create. That you will begin not knowing when or if you will ever begin. Heheh... now I got you thinking !! Roleplay would begin even before you set foot on the colony, you would need to prove yourself in some way. We would not wish for just experienced Rpers, but the hope that people will start to venture into RP and not be scared to experiment. Not an easy concept as people seem to value freedom in S.L, but in organisation can come purpose. Perhaps the best part in all this, is that this new environment will lend itself to becoming possibly a very unusual aspect in Second Life roleplay. One that is not centered on S.L children per se but will very much have Second Life children at the heart of it. I guess people will see this as madness too, seeing so many roleplay places seem to make make a prime directive to discourage children from its environment due to more " mature" settings. This is mainly in part because many have a very dim and often shallow biased view of Second Life children to begin with and that " blanket banning" saves them from possible issues. As a kid in Second Life I am not too concerned in the complexities of how people view S.L children, the point I am making is that the roleplay will offer an opportunity for them to mix with others and maybe change a few minds in the process.

    I think its important we have such an RP environment for Second Life children, where characters have an opportunity to shine in their own right, create, bat imagination of each other and develop stories in an environment. Most importantly the environment is filled with people attending for similar reasons - Roleplay. My hope is the colony world will offer that. It will take time though, we want a place that looks so cool but this takes time to build, retro future items are not readily avaliable in SL, people just don't create them as much as Steampunk and Cybertech is created.
    Pretty much everything has to be built and designed by us to look the part and bring continuity to the design timeline.As things progess I will update the blog with its developments. Talking of blogs there will also be come new changes as we move away from freebie bloghosting ( the companys policy on adverts to fund free blogging really kills the control of our own blogpages) to our own private domain via Azehosts. With this change the website will become more story based as well as ongoing information on ZiSP developments. 

    So while we get busy with the building and RP organisation, maybe buy a ZA-P9 gun and start practicing. The link is here -

    It may serve you in good stead later for when the colony does open.
    Until then may your thrusters always fire and your air tank never implode.

    Jordy Zipdash





  • Space Pirates launched

    It had been a hectic month in the ZISP HQ, as spent a while thinking up ideas that would not only create a more open image for ZISP, but also try to develop a more close knit relationship with its future and past customer base. It was so that ZISP decided its first role was to try and promote its adventure-wear products to a market that is very difficult to break,that market is the the kid avatar market. And boy is that a hard thing to do - but we are quietly confident that we will slowly see more Intergalactic kids appearing on the grid. Such things take time and when eventually they get fed up of looking " normal", they will creep into more unusual yet kid based wear. I wear mine almost all the time, not just cause its promotion but I actually enjoy wearing it. I get noticed a lot and being the big -headed vain fashion conscious boy I am - I choose to wear it cause it gets me fussed over ( oh how vain am I ? :D) So when it came to thinking about ZISP's 2nd product, we wanted something tough looking to the last suits clean lines.
    So we needed a " bad guy" costume to compliment the bubble helmet spacesuit and we came up with - the Space Pirate after hours of thinking and rubbing out, amending to have the suit we have today

    What ZISP aims to develop, is create things that real kids would love to have; clothing that would never be possible in our lifetime due to cost of materials and labour ( as well as health and safety laws:) From the first time I ever read the TINTIN in Space books as a kid, I always wanted a suit like his and thus years later in Second Life I achieved just that. And that's whats great about Second Life, that some things are possible to have. So yeah I don't mind saying ZISP is possibly more kid minded ( I am a big kid :P) as a venture than a lot of more traditional kid stores are. In the space pirate you can see loads of things that hark back from watching 80 movies and cartoons and in celebration of all our well known villans , Skeletor from He-man, Darth Vader and the Storm troopers and a dash of General Zod as well as adding a bit of Mad Max for good measure. It was just a fun costume to think up and eventually create

    What I wanted to do first of all was try and create something that had been missing in the community for a long time, that was actual opportunities for kids to be part of something. I also was very adamant to try and source models in people I had never met previously - by that I mean actual paid jobs. Our of the three I chose, two were found though friend of a friend sort of thing and one I asked through trawling through adoption agencies. So who did we choose?... well 3 boys including myself and one girl. We chose a girl because not all girls are ribbon wearing, thumb sucking cutsie babies. WE wanted to prove that we make stuff for tomboyish girls too.

    So we went all Advent Children for our poster campaign and the final shots came out pretty darn good and each one looks the the smuggling scallywags they are. I have to thank the following models Daide, Flokers and Dylan. Emilia Darkwatch for the awesome photowork and of course Crias ( Scotty) Rowlands - the ZISP engineer, for yet another ZISP masterpiece.

    The launch party was a quiet affair, but most left with a fantastic set of DECO Mesh sneakers as a goodie bag item. Now I guess its time for a little break, settle back to Wastelands and RP and then start work on the next product  which will possibly be the equivalent of  ZISP's "difficult third album " .

    ._ZISP _.- Space Pirate - Dylan ._ZISP _.- Space Pirate - Flo ._ZISP _.- Space Pirate - Jordy

    ._ZISP _.- Space Pirate - Daide ._ZISP _.- Space Pirate Jordy with mask

  • Space Pirate Excerpt

    pirates 1jpg


    ZISP REPORT – TOP SECRET -  System date 2721

    Subject -  Space Pirates

    Following the battle of Outpost 7 ,a subspace battle that lasted 3 gruelling months against the formidable Shadow Angels.  The ZISP report logs of the year March 2718 were submitted to chain of command for inspection. It was reported that during this time that as well as suffering heavy losses, a group of pilots from  Squadron 208 of the ZISP Special Operation Force were also reported shot down behind enemy lines.

    Better known as the Vampire Pirates, Squadron 208 missions were often dangerous ones involving close enemy sabotage, spy missions and small but lethal spacecraft formation attack and flee orders over enemy lines. during what was classified as a routine flight as part of strategic surveillance mission.

    Although ZISP deny all knowledge of falsifying accounts of battle history, there is rumour to state that the whereabouts of Squadron 208 were little more than a cover up for a more darker tale.

    During this time, The ZISP force were developing new ship prototypes known as the Arató or Reaper Interceptors. The Arató came equipped with state of the art technology, including partly tested Stage 3 Nuclear Pulse Propulsion engines that were capable of limited dimensional travel.

    The Vampire Pirates in relation to their missions were given access to the new technology as a test-bed and battle tactic to destroy the Shadow Angel fleet in one short mission.

    The squadron however reported strange happenings when powering up the engines – strange disembodied static induced voices over transmissions and eerie ghostly figures were reported to being seen around the cockpits. Seconds later all transmissions ceased and were never heard from again.

    The Arató Project was quickly hushed and dis-banded, nothing more was said regarding the ill fated mission but for a small remembrance service for the lost pilots.

    It was exactly a year later that the first recorded reports of the Space Pirates were transmitted. A wave of 20 battle scarred black Arató fighters were honing to attack a ZISP supply ship in the Omega quadrant. This ships were acting strangly different to their normal specifications, as they seemed to become translucent and could pass through other ships without damage.  A month later they attacked a school ship of young ZISP academy students, of which all crew and 15  passengers were reported missing. The fate of these youngsters was unclear until one such Arató ship was captured (due to a chance of pilot error) , and its two crew were taken for questioning. One of said crew included a  young crew member, a student of the ZISP Academy who was previously missing on that fateful raid. The youngster according to the older pilot, had been taken out on a training exercise to create a new wave of interceptor pilots, ones that had quicker reflexes and saw every battle as a game.

    It was these new hopefuls that would make the Pirates of Gyilock feared throughout the star systems and beyond.

    The boy himself was also no longer the happy go lucky student he was at the Academy, now embittered with blood boiling rage and talking religiously of his leader Gyilok.
    The boy often referred to the Sword of Gyilok or Gyilok the Bloodspiller when referring to any questions, one who crosses time and space; he who plunders all souls and whose face adorned his armies to cause fear in his enemies. “ We are his children “ he spat with venom in his voice. “He is one that will bring come and take your souls, so they may power our ships and strengthen our missions” On further research, technicians tried to reverse engineer the captured  Arató to understand the workings behind its unusual ethereal function. They discovered an engine that had been heavily modified and powered by a large violet glowing crystal where the original  radioactive collection coils were housed. The understanding of this crystal were not known, only that according to the captured Pirates “ held the prisoners of Gyilok for his bidding”. Further tests resulted in a new weapon for the ZISP force, the frequency dissipater deflector. When in close distance  the deflector could “ short out” the crystals molecular structure for 5 second bursts, therefore allowing for the Arató ships to destabilize the ethereal cloaking functions and thus damage like normal spacecraft.

    As for the boy , he was reunited with his parents after a year of “ de-programming” and now lives a normal life back at the academy. He is reported to be in good health and mind apart from occasional restless sleep patterns. His flying skill are reported to be higher than his fellow students although despite medical tests, cannot find any conclusion to this phenomena. Perhaps this is down to training on the Arató Interceptors which are “skittish” in flight dynamics but more likely down to something close to the Pirates. What that is we have yet to find out.  The adult crew member whereabouts and status is further classified.

    Recommendations – You best get those Pilots up to speed who knows what this Gyilok is capable of.


  • Job Done, time for some recreation - or is it?

    I have been on a little research gap on a ZISP idea this week , I won't give too much away but I can tell you the story leading up to it.

    A month ago I was having really crappy issues with my Second Life inventory, of course we know the usual suspect servers are always to blame for that - however having over 64.000 items in inventory did not help. Slow loading, often unrezzable items  and jumbled mess of inventory were getting on my nerves. So I sat down one day and chased over 33.000 items that I considered obselete and no longer useable and deleted them all, the old stuff such as clothing I never wear, old prim sci-fi stuff that adds 10 sims worth of lag as soon as i put it on - that sort of thing.

    As I was working on " spring cleaning" , I came across one of my old Vetox hoverboards that I bought in my first year of Second Life. Vetox freestyle boards although good, were not a common sight among Second Life users. It was even more rare to see them being used by kid avatars even though traditional skate parks were popular with SL kids in the past.  Vetox boards came in one flavour - the freestyle board which pretty much was a flying board where you could do some limited loops and curve spins. The were actually great fun and a good way to travel around a sim in even though sim crossings were out of the question ( less you find yourself in sim drift). My only issue with them were the style of them, they were hardly the prettiest of boards to begin with and even now still there can be room for improvement. But as with most things in Second Life, as you spend longer on the grid you also move on to new things sometimes through your own intentions or pushed into a new avenue. So my simboard became a forgotten item until recently.

    So I rezzed the board and had a little go on it and actually had a lot of fun. To be honest I was hoping the board designs would have changed a lot since I bought my old board, so  I went on a little jaunt to see if anything was new with simboards and turns out a few things have.   
    Over the years many others have caught onto the simboard bug, creating both freestyle teams as well as a new concept for me - Simball. Simball basically is  like a cross between basketball and skateboarding with some pinball bumpers added for good measure. Simball also introduced a new kind of simboard that is different from the freestyle one , where it reacts a bit more like a traditional skateboard. Also known as the CS range , they dont fly unlike the Freestyle counterparts but are more geared to simball users rather than recreational everyday exploring .
    There are also small number of very committed players and teams out there creating a little network of simboard related arena, games and meeting points for others interested in the simboard vibe.

    The CS boards have really begun to interest me , so much so I thought I would look into a  new sim board and start training on them to see how good this new sport really is.  Maybe with time I will get better and less as my tutor calls me " tsutanai ". :). As for my freestyle board, well I will continue to use it as its still a very fun item to have ,but it's given me some ideas for the meantime to be getting on with. Me at simboarding school

  • Gyilock's Little Helpers

    It's been a little while since the last Zipdash blog entry, so I should by rights put stuff in here to keep myself right. ZISP was kinda quiet the past month - possibly due to a number of factors. My vendors stopped giving out Demos due to me revising them, Second Life also decided to discontinue its magic box deliveries on marketplace. So I had a bit of re-shuffling of storeroom work to do ( thank you SL, your love for making all things that were working fine into a chore, yet leaving more important things still not fixed is yet again a great example of how SL marketing continues its " head in the sand" policy.
    But seeing the Wasteland RP was stepped down a bit as nothing really exciting was going on there at the moment, it was a good time to sort out a few store bits and bobs. 

    Anyways I love any chance to wear my overalls , so I spent a couple of hours putting things right and now they work pretty good. The pirate suit was finally created, boxed up with a little story behind it and introducing the world of Gyilock the Bloodletter. Who he or what it is can only be told through other pirate suit wearers, so maybe its best to track one down or indeed buy the new suit when they are released later this month ( all going well)

    A few suits were given out to a few friends for testing, some were sold early as they could not wait for them after seeing the concept drawings. So the suits are out there and they do exist, they are just not officially on sale till we get all the advertising stuff done. On that note, ZISP also did a pretty unusual thing and that was to look for some models to star in the poster campain  we will launch. Finding models is hard, finding really cool looking kid models is close to impossible.  In my opinion a lot of kids don't know how to create and develop their look, so it was a great pleasure to find and  work with some Second Life kids that really know how to put a good avatar together.

    Over the past week we booked them in for green screen shots courtesy of my good buddy Emilia Darkwatch's photography studio  called Elements.  I have used Elements for a long time, starting out initially for my own profile pic and she does some fantastic work . Elements did the photos for the last ZISP product and when we got to discussing the look of the new posters, we were both pretty excited to start work on them.  So who did we choose?,  well you will have to wait and see but we have myself , another two handsome looking gentlemen and one extremely scrappy cute girl. Yes thats right a girl - no cute pink bows for her and she looks fantastic as a mini space pirate. It was so nice to meet kids who were open to wear new things that move from the normal, in fact a very cool thing happened during that photoshoot .

    As we were waiting for the photographer to set up, a lady teleported into the studio to look around. The really nice comments she made on those kids was really sweet and she even mentioned the word " cute space children". Thats exactly the comments I wanted to hear cause I get that a lot. Normally you travel around Second Life as a kid avatar looking for things. It's a common occurance some kids are told off by other people by rezzing in sims, despite many people not understanding what kid avatars can or cannot do in Second Life. In the suits I get nothing like that, its mostly the first typed words are "where did you get that?  or that looks really cool". It's the thing I always wanted for ZISP from the start, clothing for kids that look as good as the top quality stuff adults get but stuff thats totally unusual and does get you noticed. WE really do make explore-wear for kids :P

    So I guess the next blog will be all about the models and how the shots turned out. In the meantime I have another concept to plan which I think will be less about spacesuits but more about futuristic city wear.

  • Project X 47

    ZISP store has been going a month now, sales are slow but that's not why I really came to venture into my own project. The aim was to highlight the artistic genre of Atompunk and hopefully install new ideas into Second Life for new and fresh themes for others to create on and create new communities geared to all that.

    That being said despite waiting for others to catch on, The lab boys at ZISP are working on a new suit that is so evil and cool looking, I have had to lock it in a strong lead lined box and placed targeting lasers to vaporize it if it gets out of control. Nicknamed - Project X 47 or " The Reaper" - the prototype is on the blueprint table as we speak.

  • Commission Picture

    ZISP- Atompunk Meshwear

    One of the official ZISP suit store pictures taken by my favourite photography studios in Second Life - Elements Photography. Store is open and available to visit.

  • Building a new Venture

    Me at ZISP HQ

    Creativity in Second Life is not an easy venture. For some it's a natural progression and for some its a long hard slog to get anywhere - for me its the latter. I have created many things in Second Life mostly club based ventures and each time I created one - I became more detatched from each incarnation. The reason being clubs are fleeting projects, the competition is wide as anyone can open one and create thier own niche . The problem is with such open ventures comes the hard lesson you are dependant on a number of people to support a venture. You also support a working team of Djs who bother to play for you. 
    Its a hard lesson to learn when you have to not only take care of your own life when creating things in SL, but also major drama to deal with your patrons issues and fights as well as disenchanted Djs playing to flakey audience numbers.  It is soul destroying to say the least and can and will put you off creating things. The reasoning is that many outside influences affect your ventures and how you are revered in S.L (be it true or false idolization ), can be the catalyst or dodgy exhaust port to your ventures. But in all cases, fear of trying and failing should never be a stumbling block and the best way is to aim for something and do whats good for you. If others get into your mode of thinking - even better. Its not an easy road but its not dependant on a backer or encroching ideas from other parties that differ from your own. This way you can allow for personal intervention in a project no matter how wild they are.

    So with 4 years of the grid, I am now working to create something thats personal to me and it has been a lot of fun to create. From its concept idea to a finished item, when you see something thats been created really well with attention to detail - its a great self achievement.  ZISP is still in its early stages, but there are some great concepts on the burner that will be incredible fun to do - as well as creating things that are unventured for SL at the time.  
    So yup, A mesh store with kids in mind. Not a new concept sure - but its what its creating and to the high standards we aim to develop with ZISP that is. But its the very fact meshwear for small avatars in mind is on the thin side, more so when its something thats been created for kids from its early concepts, but also keeps with the high quality wear associated with bigger avatars and some really classy boutiques. However ZISP is not going to be just a clothing store, it has other tunnels being created as offshoot projects.   In the meantime, should be cool to see who climbs onboard starting from this weekend


  • The movie that time forgot

    >The project that never happened - shame as if it had (and if this trailer was real), how good would this have been to have on the movie theaters. Imagine the toys that would have been out... oh jeeze my nephews Christmas list would have had been cut a lot shorter. That rocket ship is just OMG better than cake, the design is just so cool and so in keeping to the classic sci-fi deco/ metropolis theme

    The world needs a new Buck Rogers movie to make up for the suckfest of the Star Wars prequels. Give us this now Pl0x


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