Thursday, April 24, 2008

SL Africa Day!

To celebrate the opening of the Virtual Africa sim and the 1st SL Africa Day, there were events and panel discussions at Orange Island today. As you go went the stairs to the main stage, free men's and women's outfits by Senegal-based (Yay Senegal!) Solylence Houston were available. I could not resist her pretty boubou. I unfortunately came in at the tail end of a panel discussion about web accessibility and Africa, but was able to catch master percussionist Sage Duncan (RL: Stacey Fox), who encouraged us to get up and dance...
Afterwards, there was another panel discussion about "New Media & A New Voice for African Cultures/Ideas", moderated by Alanagh Recreant, head of the Cape Town-based Uthango Social Investments (who are the driving force behind the VA and SL Africa projects). The other panelists were (l. to r.) SLInworld4 Planer, the software developer responsible for VA's AI meerkats; Anna Annenberg, a fellow with the int'l tech nonprofit iCommons, who did a recent analysis of cross-cultural interactions within SL; and KhoisanMermaid Afarensis (RL: June Bam Hutchinson), who is the CEO of the South African History project and director of Diversity for the London Museum. Jean Miller, former director of Linden Labs' International Intiatives, gave the introduction to the insightful discussion about how SL can help to be not only a gateway for African citizens' involvement in SL, but how it can help to promote cross-cultural dissemination of ideas and understanding...We were all very excited to see the sim declared opened and adopt a meerkat. The HUD is free and then you buy your meerkat, which lives on the sim and will respond to you, depending upon your treatment of it. DJ Doubledown Tantino was spinning the tunes and I had a great time talking to everyone...
Codie Redgrave and I were finding that our meerkats ("Rafetna" and "CodieKat" respectively) seem to have quite a mind of their own...

2 comments:

Alanagh said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Alanagh said...

Thank you for joining us on the day, and taking the time to write it up! It was wonderful having you there.

Love the pictures, please feel free to also post event pictures to:
http://www.flickr.com/groups/578516@N25/