January 2024 Roundup

January 2024 Roundup

Happy belated new year to you all! It's been a month full of activity, but instead of posting little bits and pieces and spamming your inboxes, I decided to do a summary of events for you instead as January comes to a close.

Gathering of the Avatars

An archive of the Gathering of the Avatars stream held on January 12th, 2024

I posted about this event earlier on in the month and although it had to be rescheduled for a week later, it was totally worth it! A bunch of people showed up, including some original Habitat members who were around during the 1980's! You can watch the archive of the stream above.

EC Habitats Hack Day

An archive of the Electric Communities Hack Day held on January 13th, 2024

I also posted about this event earlier on this month. Randy Farmer, Chip Morningstar and some other Electric Communities alumni showed up both in person in Oakland, CA at The Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment, as well as virtually on Discord.

Unfortunately, progress wasn't made on being able to get clients to talk to each other and be able to share the same virtual space. However, a really good chat was had where we were given a background of the history of how Electric Communities came to be and what led up to the creation of EC Habitats. There was also some good discussion about virtual worlds in general. It's worth a watch, although you'll want to skip forwards through the stream because the initial part is just administrative details.

If you want to check out the Hack Day github where the EC Habitats client source code will eventually end up and read all of the detailed documentation that is currently live, head on over to https://github.com/Museum-of-Art-and-Digital-Entertainment/Electric-Communities.

Habitat Inspector

You can explore the entire Habitat world in your browser thanks to SpindleyQ! You can see the Plaza Fountain here where avatars often gathered.

I'd also posted about this earlier on in the month but have huge updates. User SpindleyQ from the NeoHabitat Slack dove head first into the original Lucasfilm's Habitat source code and was able to take the original artwork in its raw form, output it into the browser and create a catalog of all of the artwork.

Since I last posted about it however, he's taken things to another level entirely.

You can now browse through every region in the NeoHabitat region database in your browser as well. This isn't connecting to a NeoHabitat server, but the artwork is being rendered from the original art files in your browser and the room description that tells the Habitat client how to render the room is being used by SpindleyQ's code to generate the room in your browser instead!

Given all of the work that has been done so far, it's not unreasonable to think that with a bit more effort, you could have a native browser client for Habitat which is an exciting possibility.

You can check it out all of his work and explore the Habitat world by heading to https://frandallfarmer.github.io/neohabitat-doc/inspector/index.html

Avatars 97 Conference

WorldsAway executive producer Tony Christopher gives a talk at a panel entitled "Show me the Revenue Stream - What is your user community prepared to pay for?" on October 24th, 1997 at the Avatars 97 event in San Francisco, CA

I've been sitting on this footage for a little while now but have only just uploaded it. This is a short clip of WorldsAway executive producer Tony Christopher giving a talk at the Avatars 97 event and he talks quite a bit about WorldsAway. I didn't think this video was worth an entire post of its own so I'm tacking it on here.