Long time educational service Discovery Channel now has Discovery VR, and I am sure it is no accident that the first show at the top of the page is Mythbuster’s Shark Dive. Combining two of Discovery Channels audience favorites in this fully immersive 360 degree virtual reality environment is a great way to introduce it. And of you don’t have a VR headset you can enjoy it on any computer, tablet, or smart phone using a web browser or the App. They threw in some of their other Shark Week programming, as well as a number of adventure and environment shows. This is the first set of Network TV shows created specifically for Virtual Reality, but with more shows and hardware coming like Samsung’s Milk VR or Comcast’s AltspaceVR, you can expect to see a lot more of it in the future.

I thought I would post a few pictures of myself and a friend of mine hanging out on my Balloon House. I generally keep it parked a hundred meters above sea level somewhere above an island paradise. You have to love Virtual Reality environments like Second Life; they can be so whimsical.

My Balloon House, far
My Balloon House, far
My Balloon House, medium
My Balloon House, medium
My Balloon House, near
My Balloon House, near

Laissez les bons temps roulez! This year I decided to become a Mardi Gras float and join a parade which took place in a Steampunk Variation of New Orleans somewhere around the 1860s. The parade was held by the Crewe of Scribes, the theme was favorite Victorian authors, and I had a tough time deciding between Jules Verne and H. G. Wells. But Verne was fully in the era, while Wells only caught a bit of the tale end of it (not misspelling, just a really bad pun), so that is what I went with. I always enjoyed his underwater stories the best, so when I assembled my float I used coral alpha textures on a transparent prim, some seaweed flexi prims, and one of the best little Steampunk submarines I have ever seen. When it was finished, I put the float on as my avatar and joined the parade; what a lot of fun that was! Thanks to the Mayor of Mieville Perryn Peterson, and all the other good folks of the Steamlands, for a truly fun holiday. In fact, I have to get ready for the Mardi Gras Ball now; I will be back soon.

My Mardi Gras Float 2015
My Mardi Gras Float 2015

I enjoy the heck out of online Virtual Reality environments, and this is a perfect example of why; I get to be the Death of Rats (one of my favorite Terry Pratchett characters from his Discworld series), flying one of the Airships featured in the recent Steampunk movie version of the Three Musketeers. The universe these pictures were taken in is Second Life, which has been around for a while but is still an awful lot of fun. I had found that ship an hour or two after the Role Playing class I attended (last picture; it is difficult to see me hidden by the wings of the fairy sitting behind me), where the instructor was a red demoness on a bar stool, with her assistant teacher being a 10 meter long yellow dragon. Some of the smaller non-humans brought their own seating arrangements, like the cushion the mouse lady in the lower right corner of the picture is using.

Steampunk Death of Rats
Steampunk Death of Rats
Flying up to the Airship
Flying up to the Airship
Role Playing class
Role Playing class