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3D Weather Data Visualization in Second Life

CmdrTaco posted more than 7 years ago | from the because-you-can dept.

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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Practical? (2, Funny)

Mateo_LeFou (859634) | more than 7 years ago | (#16631446)

This is the easiest way to find out of it's cold outside?

Re:Practical? (1)

tranceyboy (1016910) | more than 7 years ago | (#16639923)

Shit I normally open the window wind open for 5 min while I get dressed, better than Mr. G and his forecast.....LOL

For $19.95 plus shipping, I'll send you... (1)

castoridae (453809) | more than 7 years ago | (#16640765)

...a Weather Rock.

When it's white, it's snowing outside.
When it's wet, it's raining.
When it's... :-)

Easier than getting my wife to check... (1)

Dareth (47614) | more than 7 years ago | (#16641419)

"Honey, tell me if it is cold outside. Do I need to wear my jacket?"

* expletive laden response *

"Does that mean it is cold, or just cold in hell?"

Already done (1)

cmorriss (471077) | more than 7 years ago | (#16631470)

This has been around for ages and in much higher resultion. It's called a window.

Re:Already done (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16631490)

It's called a window.

Ahh.. these are the magical devices that let you see through walls?

Re:Already done (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16631564)

Look, just because some free weatherbot installs itself in my windows each time I use Internet Explorer that doesn't mean it's any easier than looking outside-- oh, nevermind...

Re:Already done (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16640683)

Don't say things like that.

Slashdotters hate Windows.

It's very slow for me with Firefox 2.0. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16631524)

I'm trying to use it, but it's running very slowly. For the record, I'm using Firefox 2.0 on Fedora Core 5 on a 3.0 GHz Pentium4 computer with 2 GB of memory. I have a 8 Mb/s cable Internet connection, so I don't think network connectivity is the problem.

I'm guessing that the problem is Firefox 2.0, since it works pretty well when I use Konqueror or Opera. What can I do to Firefox 2.0 to make it work properly for this site? This looks like a really fantastic tool for checking on the weather in realtime.

Weather imaging performance baloons (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16631540)

Up up and away

Weather layers for Google Earth (3, Informative)

Lord Satri (609291) | more than 7 years ago | (#16631556)

Ok, I must admit, the way they represent it in Second Life is interesting. Symbolic, not realistic, but sometimes symbolization is simply more efficient than realism.

US weather radar layers for Google Earth [gearthblog.com] .
3D pseudo-real-time global clouds layer for Google Earth [gearthblog.com] .
And while we're at it, weather radar data for Canada [ec.gc.ca] .

Oh yeah.. you can't use GE at work (as clearly specified in the license), so use the great (and open source) NASA World Wind instead [nasa.gov] .

Re:Weather layers for Google Earth (1)

Cylix (55374) | more than 7 years ago | (#16632028)

Not in video games!

Take your hippie ways back to the 60's and leave my virtual worlds alone.

I want cutting edge, razor sharp, earth shatter reality.... and I want it to gut your belly so I can watch the virtual steam rise from the wound.

Now, off with you and your voodoo symbology!

Re:Weather layers for Google Earth (1)

weatherfan (1024699) | more than 7 years ago | (#16772625)

WeatherBonk http://www.weatherbonk.com/ [weatherbonk.com] has a dynamic data layer for Google Earth with realtime temperature observations, webcams, radar, and alerts.

Second Life? (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 7 years ago | (#16631670)

So I have to wait until afterlife in order to use it?
What about a solution which already works during first life?

Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (1, Interesting)

sgant (178166) | more than 7 years ago | (#16631714)

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"?

Re:Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (1)

lordmetroid (708723) | more than 7 years ago | (#16631870)

This is a joke news, right? The service is the lousiest weather service I have ever seen in my life. No detail whatsoever about the weather and the 3D representation doesn't add any detail neither. It serves no purpose.

Re:Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (0, Troll)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 7 years ago | (#16631890)

I agree and I have to wonder why Slashdot has this recent flux of Second Life news. I don't really known anyone who use and like it. Compared to World of Warcraft, Guild Wars, and the likes, it's nothing.

Re:Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (1)

k31 (98145) | more than 7 years ago | (#16632144)

I'm sure they were bribed... perhaps they were told that the servers run on Linux...

Re:Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (1)

Ciarang (967337) | more than 7 years ago | (#16632436)

In my experience, it's very much like MySpace but in 3D. However, it's a very interesting platform for live music - I've 'attended' a number of gigs there and been impressed with what's going on, and moreso with the potential once the technology catches up.

It's an interesting platform for lots of other things too, which is what TFA is about. You're comparing it to something that it's not, which explains your confusion.

Re:Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16634204)

Slashdot is Second Life fanboi central. Welcome to Web2.0 - with all the BS of Web1.0.

Re:Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16631916)

I'm posting as AC because I've already moderated this discussion. Oh well.

Think of second life as the Internet circa 1980, yeah, that long ago. But think what would have happened if the Internet in 1980 had micropayments and a 1,000 times the nodes it had back then.

Second Life seems to be about shopping and getting (virtually) laid. But it really is about figuring out what it is about. This could be Stephanson's Metaverse, or frankly it could be chat with bad pictures.

It is amazing crude but also wonderful none the less to think about what it might become.

Re:Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (0)

El Torico (732160) | more than 7 years ago | (#16631978)

It is amazing crude but also wonderful none the less to think about what it might become.

It might become another damn waste of time and money. Oh wait; it already is.

Re:Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16632012)

The internet was partly a damn waste of time and money in the early 80s. Just like SL there were stupid areas. I distinctly recall running emacs on a machine at MIT but telnetted to a machine in London. Why? Because I could. And better yet, I tried to summon an elevator to the 9th floor but since I was "in" London I couldn't.

Waste of time? Certainly. But the hackers who wrote that bit of code? Not a waste of time at all. Second Life is an infant right now, just trying to figure out what is going on. There are going to be lots and lots of false starts and inefficiences.

And yes, it might just flash and burn. Not everything is a success.

Re:Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (1)

CFBMoo1 (157453) | more than 7 years ago | (#16632016)

It would have had to have been an invisible dome. You could easly fly over the wall.

Performance wise I tried that place out. On a dual core 3ghz machine with 4 gigs of ram and a 7900gtx nvidia card it was a bit slow in places. The graphics were nice but it reminded me of a cross between Active Worlds and There. Somehow that cross gave me pretty poor performance although I did have my visual range set to around 120m. I cut it back to 60m and it was slightly better.

Object creation and manipulation is interesting. Reminds me of Calagari Truespace. So Second Life is like three programs in one to me. Active Worlds, There, and Calagari Truespace.

Re:Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16632182)

You remind me of the guy in this comic..

http://www.ctrlaltdel-online.com/comic.php?d=20061 020 [ctrlaltdel-online.com]

Probably only tried it for a few minutes, cried and left.

If you don't like what's there to offer in Second Life, BUILD IT YOURSELF. That's the genius of it.

Re:Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (1)

Minwee (522556) | more than 7 years ago | (#16632944)

Actually, if you don't like what's there to offer in Second Life, DON'T USE IT. Why is that so hard to understand? It's not like there aren't any alternative ways to waste your time.

Re:Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16632664)

Don't set the network bandwidth at maximum, set it slightly less than your upload speed.

I guess you never learned to use the search feature either if all you went to was the places with the highest number of people "Popular Places" Don't go there! Would you judge the usefulness of the internet as a whole based on just visiting porn sites? People like you are why I keep begging the Lindens to add the equivalents to "newbie quest givers" to the welcome areas and help islands. So that the people don't "get" second life as fast as other people have some direction and goals.

Also, don't know what the point is. It's a chat/social/networking thingy that's laggy and unreal.


That is the point. it's a 3D chat/social/networking thingy that's unreal. Meaning you can do anything, be anything. Build a virtuall space museum? Yes. Art gallery? Yes. Build a diablo style game within the "game". Yes. Race snails? Yes. Build a ridable replica of the London Eye? Yes. Build a "haunted house" to explore? Yes.

 
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.


That's because all you went to was the sex areas.

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.


15 years ago was 1991. That was pre DOOM, most everything was 2D. Nothing looked like Second Life. Nothing in EQ matches the avatar customization in Second Life.

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 aren't trying to be any specific thing. They're trying to be whatever you want it to be. So Second Life is different things for different people. You get out of it, what you want to get out of it. And it is one thing standard web clients and IM clients aren't, 3D.

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"?


They maxed out the capacity of the area hosting the concert IIRC. So yes, people saw it.

It's special because it's live, and the audience could interact right back at her. Not just the audience right near her real world physical performance (which could be displayed in Second LIfe at the same time), but people across the world.
It's primitive now, yes, but I think in the future musical events like this will e something special.

As for stopping griiefers, that's what event security is for. In Second Life you can limit access to locations to persons invited/vetted/cleared if necessary. But Second Life is also a social community so there's social "rules" and serious events get disrupted less than one might think.

Re:Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (1)

thc69 (98798) | more than 7 years ago | (#16633616)

When you go to a place that DOES have people gathered around usually ends up just being either virtual prostitution or porn. [...] 3D avatars that all look like nymphet women wearing very skimpy clothes [...] I felt like I was in some world that was made 15 years or go or something.
Sounds great. I can't believe I've been missing all this pr0n! And the graphics ought to be just right for me; all the stuff made after "15 years or go" gives me motion sickness. This ought to be easy on my head and stomach. WooHoo!

Re:Why is Second Life getting all this buzz now? (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 7 years ago | (#16642721)

When you go to a place that DOES have people gathered around usually ends up just being either virtual prostitution or porn.
What do you mean, just?

Second Life Payola? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16631736)

What's going on? I thought you had to mention when you were slashdotting a partner/sponsor website.

Another Second Life story? (1, Interesting)

spyrral (162842) | more than 7 years ago | (#16631994)

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.

Re:Another Second Life story? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16632924)

That is too true unfortunately. I don't think the networks and computers are the main problem though, it's the software. 3D software like this still has a very long way to go to be really useful, it's really just a toy at the moment and will stay such for years to come.

whine piss moan (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16635408)

nt

interesting for about 3 minutes (1)

mabu (178417) | more than 7 years ago | (#16632172)

I tried Second Life again recently expecting to see a lot of improvement since the last time there was some hooplah about it and I was disappointed. This time around, it was pretty much the same thing.

In the very early days of the Internet there was a project that looks strikingly similar to Second Life - I think it was around 1998 or so and the concept and look and feel was the same. Anyone remember the name? They got a little venture funding and the site never took off - it suffered from the same "Ok, I'm here, now what?" issues that SL seems to have.

Re:interesting for about 3 minutes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16632280)

The one that strangely resembled Second Life was

Alpha World

Previous Project was Traveler (1)

MajorPeabody (998676) | more than 7 years ago | (#16632324)

I believe the previous projusct you saw was called Traveler, and it's STILL around. Stereo audio, very low bandwidth requirements, and worlds/spaces created by the user population. Pretty cool

WorldsAway? (1)

mutube (981006) | more than 7 years ago | (#16632578)

There was something called WorldsAway. A 2d multi-user graphical chat world, heavily promoted by CompuServe at the time. I don't remember it being very good, but still going [digitalspace.com] and is now called VZones [vzones.com] . Intro demo is worth a laugh.

Re:interesting for about 3 minutes (1)

topham (32406) | more than 7 years ago | (#16633590)

"very early days"?

1998 isn't the very early days of the Internet.

Re:interesting for about 3 minutes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16636786)

Well, it was the late toddler days of the web, so that's pretty close if you squint a whole lot. And drink a lot.

Re:interesting for about 3 minutes (1)

Gulthek (12570) | more than 7 years ago | (#16637512)

1998 ~= early days of the Internet now? Damn, I'm old.

a brief response from a person involved... (3, Informative)

ehackathorn (168173) | more than 7 years ago | (#16632216)

I wouldn't call this project abandoned as much as it is still under development. Reading the previous comments, my answer to having easier ways to find the temperature outside is "YES." :-) I recommend turning on a TV, reading the newspaper, or surfing to a web site of your choosing. This visualization should be considered a beta with the intention of showing what Second Life (or technologies like Second Life) may be capable of in the future. (Slashdotted before prime time, ouch)


NOAA and ESRL are looking at Second Life as a possible platform for educational outreach as well as visualizing some of our data much of which is inherently 3D rather than 2D. Our island, which will have more of a focus on education rather than data visualization is slated for opening in the middle of November. If you are interested in more information you can visit our web site (also under construction) at http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/outreach/sl/ [noaa.gov]


Eric

Give me a break. (0, Troll)

Lewrker (749844) | more than 7 years ago | (#16632526)

I thought the only people interested in second life are the ones who eat cats or dogs. Or the ones who call you a dicksucker with a high-pitched voice in any other game. Why don't you write about every crappy minor change in any crappy game ? Second life is almost as irrelevant for slashdot users as myspace.

FREE INSTANT WEATHER CHECKS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16632712)

it's called outside, maybe you've heard of it.

Best use of funds? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16632862)

Designing 3D islands in Second Life to tell the weather, even in a research capacity, indicates that we're all due a tax refund. This is really the best use of our tax dollars?

Heck, it's the best use just within NOAA? How about a NWS Web site redesign -- it's almost unnavigable.

Thank you for avoiding calling this "game news" (1)

kinglink (195330) | more than 7 years ago | (#16632978)

Second life might be an incredible simulation, but it's far from a game. It is interesting though.

3d Weather simulation though? I'm sure we've had that in multiple places. a large scale version is Flight simulator X which can now pull live weather data every 15 minutes from Jensen.com (A major flight tool provider). And even better with Flight Sim you see exactly how that works in real life.

Though how they present it in Second life might be interesting, I'm finding that now it's even less of a game (not that it was before) and new way to advertise. Though I have to admit it sounds like an interesting idea. Maybe after everything calms down they can do a cyber E3, miniture version. It'd cost them a lot less then those huge booths last year, and even though players think they should be there, they shouldn't but at least they can see a idea of what it used to be like.

Thank you for avoiding calling this "animated" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16635062)

Hypercosm [hypercosm.com] could do animated weather maps.

Re:Thank you for avoiding calling this "game news" (1)

kinglink (195330) | more than 7 years ago | (#16642775)

I guess I spoke to soon. it's now game news *Shakes head*

overexposure (1)

Wax_and_Wane (558470) | more than 7 years ago | (#16633782)

I work in Second Life. So I don't feel the need to be a troll and bash anything about it to tell the truth. Slashdot is running too many stories about Second Life. These stories get about 50 replies at most and are usually no more than rehashed press releases like this one or obvious attempts to drum up interest in a Second Life. Slashdot readers have shown through lack of comments that they are not interested in this many stories about this subject. Not to mention it is overexposing a young platform and even creating a bit of backlash against it. This backlash is the fault of an overzealous PR machine at Linden Lab more than anything.

I think it would be nice to cool down this campaign and let something that is actually groundbreaking happen before posting another Second Life story. I love SL but all of these stories make even me see it as overhyped BS.

Never mind realistic weather in Second Life... (1)

Elbowgeek (633324) | more than 7 years ago | (#16633902)

I joined the other day to see what the fuss is all about. And I'm now totally baffled as to what the fuss is all about. I was looking at graphics that hadn't advanced since the hoo-ha about virtual worlds back in the late 90's. Crude and extremely difficult to navigate in a world about as attractive and welcoming as a... well as a graphically rendered world circa 1998. Nasty.

And the thought of interacting with even more poorly rendered avatars which only represent real humans' own invented alter egos is even less attractive a thought. Utterly lame, as the kids would say.

So rendering weather in such a horrible environment seems rather pointless. So now we'll see a bunch of people with bugs bunny heads and angel wings wandering randomly about the place spouting random thoughts whilst walking right through various bits of random stuff strewn about the place... while it pours with rain. Well that sounds like a lot of fun

This interweb thing...it'll never last (1)

Luciftias (1019996) | more than 7 years ago | (#16636678)

Honestly, only geeks and nerds will ever use the internet. No one else will care.

It sure won't... (1)

Elbowgeek (633324) | more than 7 years ago | (#16636750)

As long as they keep giving us such primitive and poorly designed online experiences as Half Life.

You're right. Gopher is much better than (1)

Luciftias (1019996) | more than 7 years ago | (#16636842)

that thing out of CERN anyway.

Honestly... (1)

Elbowgeek (633324) | more than 7 years ago | (#16636954)

I think the creators of Half Life probably still think Gopher is current tech. Did they just resurrect the code for the original virtual world stuff of yore and rebrand it? The web is about innovation - the graphics in Half Life are more crude than 100,000 year old cave paintings.

Sheesh

Re:Honestly... (1)

jacksonj04 (800021) | more than 7 years ago | (#16640375)

I think you're confused here. Second Life is the 3D 'virtual world'. Half-Life is the video game.

Doh! (1)

Elbowgeek (633324) | more than 7 years ago | (#16640469)

Yeah. I blame it on being dog tired when posting that. It was a hard week for me last week.

So yeah, Second Life sucks, Half Life doesn't. Thanks for pointing that out :-)

I don't envy those who live second life (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16634654)

I don't really envy those who have to live second life - sometimes I find it hard to live this one life ;)

Another option (1)

QuantumFTL (197300) | more than 7 years ago | (#16636044)

If you're too busy living your First Life to check out the weather in Second Life, you can always visit the Great Blue Room...

Re:Another option (1)

mmalove (919245) | more than 7 years ago | (#16642305)

I heard some guy put a sun in there, but it's tricky, you can only find it in the daytime, and sometimes, it's hidden behind some clouds! That guy's amazing!

Gray (1)

caller9 (764851) | more than 7 years ago | (#16638641)

It isn't good or bad, its somewhere in between. Sure you could join up, give yourself some supermodel physique and tear ass around the world spouting the same dumb ass crap you would in your normal body. Dur, that's a given.

What I saw in my first few minutes there was not the NOAA link I originally signed up for...which by the way, kind-of sucks. But I found an International Space Museum that offered crude, but better than I've come across inside views of the space shuttle, Virgin galactic, and even the monkey-death-trap-based cockpits. This was along with 3D models of any rocket I could and couldn't really think of with an info placard that briefly explained its service history. (shhh they even had commie rockets!) It was like 3 flight museums rolled into one. There even happened to be a guest speaker about Hubble at the time. His speech was bland and predictable. blah blah pillars of creation...blah blah (insert generic Hubble image quote). The real kicker was an animated 3D image of the approximated guts of Hubble. Now any enterprising person interested in space imagery or astrophysics would already have a Sombrero Galaxy (M104) desktop image. But people that think stars are pretty crap that shows up at night, and mostly in rural areas would really stand to learn something. Plus this guy is really a PhD, with enough interest in spreading truth that if I had a good question to ask him, I might've learned something.

I later attended a course in scripting objects that communicate with the SL world. Sounds gay to be sure, but the guy was a human teaching other students how to work in the world with a very basic tool set of comm functions. He handed out example objects with code tied to them and *we* uncommented pertinent lines of code to alter the objects behavior. It was definitely a 101 course but it had a human element. Q&A that you don't get from a wikipedia or some 3l173 guy saying RTFM. You could actually ask a pro with absolutely $0 spent and no time really wasted on finding him. It was like a class at the Y for SL scripting.

So for everyone that says WTF, I agree completely. The alternate lifestyle via this medium is completely ridiculous. Like this one "girl" that was every bit of 36x24x36 at 6'2" and wearing something lacy that where it wasn't bear skin exposed erect, I kid you not, erect nipples under lace. To top it off, model face and some kind of feathered-bleached-layered hair-do that is pretty much what anybody would attempt to lay. That said, I can guarantee it was a 40 year old guy in the Midwest that had a penchant for children..If not it was a 300 pound woman in the Midwest missing said husband. SO YEAH, THERE IS A DIRTY UNDERBELLY. If you have half a brain cell, you can discard those dorks and move on with a pretty good educational tool.

when will Google Earth get live weather? (1)

cyber1kenobi (666018) | more than 7 years ago | (#16640945)

I've been waiting for a live weather layer in Google Earth for months. Makes sense right? Even if the imagery isn't completely up-to-date, the weather in the area is very helpful. Zoom, tilt, rotate, and see where that storm is going to hit! :)

Second Life? Account needed? (1)

lpq (583377) | more than 7 years ago | (#16647235)

At the risk confirming my ignorance, I open my mouth to ask:

As I understand, "Second Life" (or "SL"), is a "Game"? It is sold by a third-party and uses network servers to allow player? Isn't there a subscription fee for access (besides the outlay for the initial game software)?

If NOAA is working on a project to display their publicly funded data in a virtual setting, that will be displayed in SL, will people be able to access this data on a "free account" in SL, or is the outcome of this project only accessible to people who "pay to play" SL?

Is this a way to get US citizens to pay a second time for access to weather data already collected through public funding?

I appreciate the new "display format" (or I might if I could actually see and/or use it), but if it is only available to private parties playing in the 3rd-party, "pay-to-exist & access" game world, I hope NOAA is being compensated by "SL" for the added benefit NOAA is bringing to the game. --OR--

I could hope that "dummy characters" could be publicly available to use through a free or open-source (SL) client that allows viewing of the NOAA, virtualized, weather data.

Perhaps one could enter the "VR" in a B/W, 2-D, low-res, "avatar" to use "public facilities", but paying members would get full-color, full-res, 3-D "avatar".

Or, alternatively, public-access avatars could be like "ghosts" - not interacting w/surroundings, having limited mobility and limited access to "public facilities". Perhaps a phone-booth metaphor would be useful for talking to people in the game, but "real" (game) interaction would be limited to paying members?

Anyway, anyone know if anything will be accessible to the general public?

Re:Second Life? Account needed? (1)

LearningHard (612455) | more than 7 years ago | (#16648017)

Ignorance confirmed :)

A quick jaunt to secondlife.com you would have seen a big orange box proclaiming membership is free.
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