Monthly Archives: April 2011

March of the Penguin (actually, it’s April)

As I’ve commented so often before:

“A duck walks into a bar…” 🙂

 This should be fun!
Come cruise and party
to celebrate five years
of penguin punditry!

Happy Rez Day, Chaos!

Open Seas Project

“Nautical activities in Second Life© are getting increasingly difficult due to the many residents who use ban lines over waterways. The purpose of the OSP is to inform and educate these residents on how to minimize the effect ban lines have on nautical activities and to encourage them about keeping waterways navigable.”
Open Seas Project

The Open Seas Project is a joint effort of the East River Community, the SL Coast Guard, and Tradewinds Yacht Club. The goal of the Group is to preserve and promote the navigable waterways in Second Life through education and public awareness advocacy initiatives.

One major objective is to inform landowners about waterways issues and their importance, and then work with owners to minimize the negative effects of obstructions or ban lines. The OSP Website includes a page of information for residents, and the same information is available in-world as a notecard.

The note comes with a set of simple one-prim hazard buoys that an owner can use to mark water obstrucions on their property.

The Open Seas Project also provides a convenient online form tool where sailors can report waterway hazards, overhanging builds, or otherwise  “annoying parcels” they encounter. The form system may relieve some of the drudgery of filing individual tickets for each and every problem you run into while sailing.

However, I think one of the best things about the Open Seas Project is the integration of online information from sailors through a series of in-world networked kiosks.

The network has a central server located at SLCG Station Muirhead that commands all the kiosks; it keeps the information distributed by multiple interactive kiosks up-to-date and coordinated with the online database.

The kiosks can rotate different posters, and give a series of different options when a specific display is clicked by a visitor. You can find a list of current kiosks and their locations here, and the SL Group is here.

Better yet, if you want your own kiosk, just drop a note in-world to Indigo Mertel, and she’ll send you one. They are very easy to set up!


Tiny World Regatta on Saturday!

The Tiny World Regatta 2011 takes off on Saturday, April 16, hosted by Triumphal Yacht Club! A day-long schedule of music, fun and sailing is planned, and free boats will be available on the dock for each race!

Click here for more details, and
click here if you’d like to pre-register to race!

Here’s the race chart:

Sansara Updates

A few months ago I posted a note here complaining about the lack of consistent names for many regions on the SL grid. The continent south of Nautilus is a good example of the point I was trying to make; it’s ‘real name’ is Mãebaleia, but I’ve actually never heard anyone call it that. Most call it… Satori.
Lindens call it that too.

This problem is actually worse for sim clusters within a continent, since the names and even the locations of these regions can change unnoticed, over time. Last August I posted a few maps of Sansara, trying to highlight the changes DPW made over the 2010 summer.  I used region names that I took from the Linden Wiki, but then quickly discovered the information listed was two years old, and rather misleading. 🙂

I’d therefore like to give a big shout-out to Icarus Fallen. He’s been working on an update of the Sansara map that includes a pretty comprehensive (and accurate) list of the regional geographic names and locations in that continent. Here’s the current version of his map. If you see anything Icarus may have missed, there’s a great discussion thread on this topic in the Linden Forum.

click to enlarge

Speaking of Sansara, let me segue here a bit to tell you that Linden Lab recently added roughly two dozen new sims to Bay City’s western edge.

Bourne: Summer-long traffic jam

Woots! The new sims all have Cape Cod maritime names, including Falmouth, Wellfleet, Edgartown, Oak Bluff, Truro, Mashpee, and many others. A channel divides the new “West Bay City” from the older, original “East Bay City” sims. (This is starting to sound a bit like Great Gatsby‘s East Egg and West Egg. 🙂 )

Click (or double click) to enlarge

My favorite part about this story is  the fact the West and East sides are linked by a bridge located in the new Bourne sim. In real life, the Bourne Bridge spans the Cape Cod Canal. It’s the major land access to the Cape, and it’s the ‘gateway’ to the offshore  islands (Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard).

Marianne McCann thinks the thoughtful, accurate naming may be Blue Linden’s legacy. 🙂 Be that as it may, the addition of such a large cluster of potentially nautical sims will surely add excitement and enthusiasm to Bay City’s already wonderful and vibrant community.

Bay City: "It doesnt suck" 🙂

I took a few moments to add the new sims to my earlier maps of Sansara, and I updated the names of waterways using Icarus Fallen’s definitions. There are two versions listed below. The top one is annotated and shows the names of the principal waterways in blue, and the five Linden race lines in yellow.

The one on the right below it has no text, and is intended as a template for sailors who would like to make charts. Both graphics are roughly 6,000 pixels wide, so click (or double click) to enlarge them and feel free to cut out any small piece that suits your need. 🙂

annotated

I do have one tiny request, however. If you use the templates and add your own annotations, please remember to visit Icarus Fallen’s website and use his naming conventions. That way we will all be on the same page!

template

As a final comment today in this ‘Jane does National Geographic‘ post, 🙂 let me add that there are still two large inland water regions that lie unnamed and largely unexplored by the SL Sailing community. The inland seas are located south of FABLES, and lie between the BEAR and BRAUNWORTH regions.

If there’s a push to name these waters, I will of course defer to all the wonderful people who’ve made such huge efforts over  the past several years to build Sansara; it’s their call. However, let me at least suggest  a couple names that might memorialize a job very well done.

How about Icarus Sea and Fallen Lake? 🙂

FIYC Wins Four, Kenobi Captures Cup!

(Note: Many images below are courtesy of Dil Spitz and Silber Sands.
The originals can be seen in the ONE WORLD REGATTA image pool.)

 

When we last left the ONE WORLD FINALS‘ competition quartet, three races were on the scoreboard and in the history books. KENOBI held two first-place wins and EUREKA owned one, but point-wise it was much closer across the fleet. Under the low-point system, KENOBI lead with six points while the remaining three teams were all tied with eight points each. Oh, and don’t forget, each team could discard their worst score when the final results were tallied.

So as the warning horn sounded for Race #4, it was still a boat race and the top prize remained up for grabs.

ONE WORLD FINALS, Race #4

click to enlarge

The last race in the finals series used a chart that emphasized basic skills but also required strategic and tactical decisions. The first leg of F-4 was an upwind beat to the yellow buoy in Flat Hammock. It was followed by two reach legs that brought the Teams over to Race Rock where they engaged in a quick game of pinball, rounding four closely-spaced marks.

The final stretch was a three-sim long broad reach down Hay Harbor Channel to finish in Schooner Run sim,  right outside the FIYC Clubhouse. 🙂

In most sailboat races, the start is the thing; if you win the Start there’s a very good chance you can win the race. That certainly proved true in the One World Finals races #1-3, where team Kenobi seemed to dominate the field in Countdown antics. However, in race #4, FIYC was fired-up and ready to take KENOBI on in the pre-start.  Just watch what happens below!

Hawk’s judging video slightly altered by Jane

With roughly ninety seconds still on the clock, both FIYC and KENOBI start to  run the length of the line, hoping to get an optimal spot where they can flip to Starboard and make a lunge for the Line. KENOBI held windward advant and moved closer to FIYC to shadow. This worked quite nicely, as FIYC lost momentum and fell far astern of KENOBI.

Timing is everything in life though, and FIYC knew that both boats were way too early to set the start angle correctly; Armano and Cait were only too happy to let the Bunnimeisters hop ahead. 🙂 That meant KENOBI was forced to far-overshoot the line in a stall-for-time before they tacked. While KENOBI regained her balance, FIYC got a good groove going, and actually set up a perfect angle to cross.

Here are still images from MarkTwain White’s video that also show this point:

click to enlarge

At -00:28sec, FIYC is lined up to cut the line on close-haul, while KENOBI is far off-side, nearly in Anchor Cove Channel. Kenobi claws back on a reach, but FIYC’s closed the door nicely. KENOBI’s only move is to cut below FIYC’s stern and come up leeward, but that puts KENOBI directly under FIYC’s wind blanket. KENOBI therefore falls off the course to get free and build momentum, crossing the line a full 16 seconds behind FIYC. SVC-472 rode across in KENOBI’s wake, four seconds later.

EUREKA opted to avoid the crowd, started in the middle of the line where there was clean air and free water. It was a wise choice; EUREKA crossed a mere two seconds behind FIYC!

Armano Xaris   00:00:09
Alain Gloster   00:00:11
Bunnie Mills   00:00:25
momomos Netizen 00:00:29

Soon after the Start, FIYC opted to tack to Port early. The final image in the sequence above reveals why. As the two boats came to the first mark, EUREKA was in the lead and entered the two-boat-length zone first. However, due to the early, extra tack, FIYC approached the mark on Starboard; FIYC held Right-of-Way.

click to enlarge

As shown above, Armano and Cait played that power and position to great effect, building a strong lead on their way to the second mark in Sugar Reef. They never looked back, and sailed the rest of the course rather flawlessly. 🙂

click to enlarge

The image above shows FIYC rounding the final mark in Race Rock, setting their spinnaker for the run home with their fellow finalists two or more turns behind. EUREKA trailed by a half-minute, followed by KENOBI and SVC-472.

Finish Times:
1: Armano Xaris   IDFI01 — 00:11:25
2: Alain Gloster   IDAG64 — 00:12:03
3: Bunnie Mills   IDOBI1 — 00:12:22
4: momomos Netizen   IDJIRA — 00:13:20

FIYC’s impressive win showed how evenly matched the four finalist teams actually were; they were all true champions. However, the point totals were undeniable; over the series of four final races (with one discard), team KENOBI emerged the clear winner. FIYC came in Second, followed by EUREKA and SVC-472.

Woot! What great racing, and what great racers!

Jane Fossett opened the Awards Ceremony:

Jane Fossett shouts:
“EVERYBODY, THANK YOU FOR TWO MONTHS OF FANTASTIC RACES. THIS EVENT WAS A CELEBRATION OF ALL SL SAILING AND WOW… 150 SAILORS, OVER TWO DOZEN TEAMS AND NINE EVENTS SCATTERED ALL OVER THE GRID!!!”

Admiral MarkTwain White then took over, announcing the winners and awarding the trophies to the four Finalists.

The KENOBI Machine bellied-up to accept Top Honors and the First Place Trophy, then bunched together for a photoshoot! Wave those flags! Woots!

In addition to the awards for sailing teams, a special One World Sportsmanship Trophy was given to Sophie Abbott, representing the FLOATING BOATERS team. MarkTwain White put it aptly: 

“The award for Best Sportsmanship should be in DIAMONDS!”

So, and after ten long weeks of racing, with the consent of Head Judge Silber Sands, and Race Committee Chair Jane Fossett, Head Race Director Hay Ah declared the 2011 ONE WORLD Regatta Officially Closed.

Well, at least until the next time
we all get together and do it again. 🙂

[10:11:36]  Jane Fossett shouts: EVERYBODY, THANK YOU FOR TWO MONTHS OF FANTASTIC RACES
[10:11:54]  don Berithos: WOOOOOT!!!!
[10:11:54]  don’s translator: WOOOOOT!!
[10:11:56]  Francois Jacques: WOOOOOT!!!!
[10:11:59]  momomos Netizen: WOOOOOT!!!
[10:12:05]  Charlz Price: WOOOOOT!!!!
[10:12:07]  Fanci Beebe-Leavitt (fanci.beebe): WOOOOOT!!!!
[10:12:33]  Fi (fiori.firelight) feels “woot” challenged 😦
[10:12:37]  don Berithos shouts: we scared jane
[10:12:38]  don’s translator: 私たちはジェーン怖い
[10:12:39]  Jane Fossett shouts: THIS EVENT WAS A CELEBRATION OF ALL SL SAILING
[10:12:41]  Chat Range: LDeWell Hawker [14m]
[10:12:47]  Naeve (naeve.rossini) woots for Fi.
[10:12:47]  Mustang2 Bing is Offline
[10:12:49]  Naeve (naeve.rossini): WOOOOOT!!!!
[10:12:56]  Moontears (moontears.vought) woots for Fi
[10:12:58]  Fi (fiori.firelight): Thanks Naeve :-))
[10:13:01]  momomos Netizen: don!
[10:13:03]  Jane Fossett shouts: AND WOW… 150 SAILORS, OVER TWO DOZEN TEAMS
[10:13:06]  Chat Range: Yevgeny Varthader [12m]
[10:13:14]  Naeve (naeve.rossini): Hi, FJ. Looking gorgeous as always. 😉
[10:13:24]  Jane Fossett shouts: AND NINE EVENTS SCATTERED ALL OVER THE GRID!!!

SLCG Station Terranova Opens in Fruit Islands

On March 24, sailors from all parts of the grid converged on Fruit Islands Estate to celebrate the opening of SL Coast Guard’s new Terranova Station in Bullace. Captain Xi Larnia brought the ceremony to order, addressing the massive crowd that spread over (and overloaded) two sims.

Xi Larnia: “I imagine I should start this with the usual pleasantries….. So, I would like to thank everyone for coming to what has to be a first for both Fruit Islands and the SLCG. A party to open a brand new station!
Thanks especially go to Brenda and Elbag, for we could not have done it without their generosity in giving us free reign over this beautiful sim. Their only constrant: it had to blend in with what they had done so far.”

Elbag Gable: “And it does that beautifully.”

Xi Larnia: “I would also like to thank Admiral Tig for the opportunity to build this station… but enough of that! We are here to open a new station and hopefully usher in a new chapter in the Fruit Islands history of sailing.
To do that…. I need to introduce a few people.

The first is the station’s new commander: Commander Lanelle Saunders!

click to enlarge

Lanelle Saunders: “Thank you Captain.
Hello and thank you all for coming. I apologize for the seating capacity, but thank you for your patience and cooperation.
First, I would like to thank Equinox Pinion and Dennis Lagan for having us here in the amazing Fruit Islands. Their vision and enterprise in setting up and maintaining this wonderful estate provide their residents and guests with a truly remarkable area to live and enjoy.
I would also like to thank Elbag Gable and Brenda Hoisin for donating this beautiful setting for our newest station. Some of you may not know that Elbag also donates the land in Knaptrackicon for Station Danshire.
He saved the channel there, keeping it open and made it available for all SL boaters to have access from Nautilus City into the Dire Strait area.
Elbag’s passion for sailing made the vision for this station possible, and we will do our best to help promote and assist sailing events here in the Fruit Islands.”

Lizzo Dreamscape shouts: Three Cheers for Dennis, Equi and Elbag!

Elbag Gable: <— blushes a bit

Lanelle Saunders: Captain Xi Larnia is also instrumental in the idea, design and implementation of this station. She initially approached Elbag about having a station here to help with SL sailing.

Elbag Gable: Bravo Xi

Lanelle Saunders: “Captain Larnia also designed the building from plans of an open air home in South America; I look forward to her supportive friendship and our work together here.
Several of our own from the SL Coast Guard have been involved within the Fruit Islands. From R J Kikuchiyo designing and building Mango Yacht Club to Niki Writer, who offered her talents with many things, including the design of the Fruit Islands logo which is included with our station colors.
We, as SLCG, look forward to a long and meaningful stay with all of you in Fruit Islands.”

Elbag Gable: “Well said, Bravo!”

Lanelle Saunders: “I would like to introduce our station Executive Officer, Sarandel Llewellyn. Sara, would you please join me at the podium?”

Elbag Gable: “Hurrah, Sara!”

Lanelle Saunders: “Admiral, may we present you with Station Terranova’s plaque and colors for your approval?”

Lanelle Saunders salutes

Lanelle Saunders: “SEMPER PARATUS”


Tig Spijkers: “Just a few words…
Good Evening Ladies, Gentlemen, Fellow Guardians and Sailors. I am known to keep my speeches short and I wont disappoint you today; I will only say a few words. I know you all want to get down and party 🙂
Recently a new recruit thanked me for “hiring” him, but my answer was most probably not what he was expecting:
“We do not hire, we volunteer to serve the residents of Second Life.”
Through history, men and women have put on a uniform to serve their country and it’s residents. The SL Coast Guard stand humble before you to serve and aide the residents of the Fruit Islands in fulfilling their dreams.”

Elbag Gable: “Well said.”

Tig Spijkers: “It is in this deeper meaning we carry the legacy of those that served before us, and we pledge to continue our traditions and service to the residents now here before me.
Commander Saunders, by order of the SL Coast Guard Command I hereby authorize the commission of Station TerraNova in service of the SL Coast Guard!”

Tig Spijkers salutes.

Tig Spijkers: “SEMPER PARATUS”

Lanelle Saunders salutes.

♪♪♪♪♫♫♫♫ APPLAUSE ♫♫♫♫♫ ♪♪♪♪♪


ONE WORLD Protest

by LDewell Hawker and Jane Fossett

On March 5, the ONE WORLD Finals Races at Sailors Cove went pretty smoothly! The grid conditions were good, the sailing was great, and there were few protests. (The four race teams were all ‘pros,’ and knew their stuff!)

We thought it might be interesting to write about the single, significant protest in the series, even though the outcome was not controversial and a change in the Judges’ ruling would not have affected the final Regatta outcome.

At the beginning of Race Two as the fleet crossed the Startline, FIYC collided with KENOBI! FIYC then protested, claiming they had Right Of Way.

The Incident

If you haven’t seen it already, please go check out MarkTwain White’s video recap of the ONE WORLD Finals races on youtube, and be sure to leave him a thank-you note too. 🙂 We took a snippet of Race Two from MTW’s video and mixed it with Hawk’s  judging vid, which shows the Race #2 start from a different angle ((Hawk’s video starts at 01:20 below). Watch what happens between FIYC and Kenobi in both views as the clock ticks down to zero and the line opens!

Here’s a sequence of outtakes from Hawk’s judging video, annotated to show the countdown time and boat IDs:

FIYC and Kenobi Tango... then Tangle!

The video and stills nicely document the sequence of events. FIYC was sitting southeast of the line with sails luffed, waiting for just the right moment to go into action, and sprint for the Start.

It turns out Kenobi had a different, more risky strategy. The views above show that Kenobi spent much of the last countdown minute steaming Eastward, traveling parallel to the race line to build momentum as she approached FIYC’s spot.

Beginning at -00:26 sec, Kenobi made an abrupt gybe right in front of FIYC! That gave Kenobi the lead, and blocked FIYC. Woots! What a gutsy maneuver! That’s not just our opinion; when Bunnie was asked about it later, her assessment was:

I thought it was a gutsy maneuver!” 🙂

No surprise, FIYC immediately went into action, and cut to KENOBI’s lee side. With 16 seconds before the start, FIYC’s nose was overlapped with the lead boat’s stern. However, they were a few seconds early, so both boats fell off the wind and ran the line in parallel, waiting for the clock.

As the race started, FIYC turned back to close haul, while KENOBI was slower to react. Suddenly, BANG! FIYC slammed into KENOBI, deeply embedding her bow in KENOBI’s transom!

Jane Fossett's still pics at -11, -01, and +10

The crowd looked away in horror, trying to avoid a TOS violation for inappropriate nautical metaphor. Nonetheless, Armano and Bunnie sustained several seconds of stuck-sailing until  +16 sec. 🙂

Soon after the two boats went head-to-rump, FIYC protested under Rule 11. Here’s the initial group chat transcript:

[08:28:00]  Naeve Rossini: Just 10 s to go.
[08:28:27]  Naeve Rossini: Kenobi across the line with FIYC behind her.
[08:28:32]  Naeve Rossini: Looks like a collision there.
[08:28:52]  Naeve Rossini: Eureka and SVC crossing 3rd and 4th, all on starboard tack.
[08:29:14]  Naeve Rossini: There’s the protest from FIYC.
[08:29:24]  Viciously Llewellyn: We have a protest against Kenobi.

KENOBI never replied to the protest, but when they were clear of other boats, KENOBI did a penalty turn.

The judges felt the penalty turn resolved any pending FIYC protest, but at the conclusion of the race, Lead Judge Silber Sands held a mini-hearing to be certain of the facts. It was a model of brevity and efficiency:

[08:50]  Silber Sands: Armano.. what was Your protest though?
[08:50]  Armano Xaris: bunnie did not keep clear from leeward boat (me) pre start
[08:51]  Silber Sands: well.. it was rule 17 though.. so Bunnie did not have to do the penalty
[08:51:40]  Silber Sands: next race

Hawk’s analysis:

In the above collision, FIYC protested she had Right of Way under Rule 11 and that KENOBI failed to keep clear.

11: ON THE SAME TACK, OVERLAPPED
When boats are on the same tack and overlapped, a windward boat
shall keep clear of a leeward boat.

KENOBI did not lodge any counter-protest and chose when clear to do a PENALTY.

courtesy of Dil Spitz

However, questions were raised by the judges and spectators watching the race, and more comments came up in response to the posted videos. Jane asked me to provide an analysis as I saw it develop, and in particular how I would have decided. There are some important situations in this set of circumstances that are worthy of presentation.

I do offer this limitation:  I was outside the sim to cam inward to video, I do prefer to be directly overhead to cam down, but with the intention of reducing the lag on the racers I was outside the sim.   The video is at an angle.   If a counter protest had been lodged, we would have had to rely on all judges and their perspective.   Also, in mouse look and out of the sim, I cannot see chat or shouts.   The other judges were aware of this.  So I cannot pull a log and see the chat to determine any hails or necessarily see the instant of the protest being lodged.

However, given all the evidence, I think in this particular situation a protest against KENOBI could be appropriate at one point, but NOT in the final situation as it played out.   That’s not unusual; judges need to be keenly aware of how a situation develops, as well as the timing and specific point of the protest.

When a skipper comes in the ‘back door’ so to speak (establishes leeward overlap from clear astern), they need to be very patient before they try to luff or force a boat over the line. It’s important to avoid getting yourself in a position that makes it impossible for the windward boat to keep clear and ALSO comply with rule 17 when the line opens. Rule 17 states:

17 ON THE SAME TACK; PROPER COURSE
If a boat clear astern becomes overlapped within two of her hull
lengths to leeward of a boat on the same tack, she shall not sail above
her proper course while they remain on the same tack and overlapped
within that distance, unless in doing so she promptly sails
astern of the other boat. This rule does not apply if the overlap
begins while the windward boat is required by rule 13 to keep clear.

At -00:10 sec the boats were close to mast abeam (side by side), and KENOBI was clear to windward.  At -00:05 sec, FIYC then aggressively turned toward KENOBI, who maintained course. At -00:02 sec the boats were positioned so KENOBI could only keep clear by maintaining course (can’t bear off or turn up without causing a collision).  FIYC no longer had the ability to prevail at this point for a rule 11 PROTEST.

click to enlarge

Once the line opened, Rule 17 turned on, and FIYC had no ability to luff KENOBI and was required to bear off to keep clear.  At that point their proper course would have been to continue ahead and start.  FIYC did not bear off however, and at +00:04 sec she struck KENOBI’s stern and continued to force KENOBI windward for another 10 seconds.  That was a clear violation of rule 17.   However, KENOBI did not lodge a counter-protest, so no decision regarding such was made by the judges.

IF FIYC had immediately acted when KENOBI was tacking and gained overlap lee at that time, FIYC would have full lee rights pre-start and when the line opened an not subject to rule 17.

If FIYC had aggressively trimmed sails, turned windward and hailed (hail is optional – but nice for the judges) at -00:10 sec when the boats were abeam, FIYC could have turned KENOBI over the line, or made her draw a foul by bearing off just before the collision.  Waiting put FIYC in a position where they might not prevail under Rule 11 as the contact was after the line opened, and they could have been DSQ under Rule 17.

Comment

KENOBI had several options to counter-protest FIYC, but chose not to do so.

A counter-protest NEVER hurts.  If you had any question as to your rights find out.   And if you did a penalty, and were wrong you won’t be disqualified.   You have paid your price and found out why.   BUT, if you were within your rights AND fouled then your fellow competitor will be disqualified.  You do have to be aware of the basic rules, and the rules are very much interrelated and there are exceptions with each of the basic rules.  They are not hard to learn, but discussion is the only way you can really absorb them and understand the exceptions.    Spend some time in the SLSA Sailing Academy and the rules exhibits; it won’t hurt. 🙂