Thursday, April 30, 2009

Steampunk Art: 2D Goggles



The other day, I had the good fortune to notice a small link on Duke Pearse's blog, and followed it to an astoundingly humorous Steampunk blog about two of the genre's icons - Lovelace and Babbage! Together, they fight (or will fight, as the blog is quite new) a variety of threats of the time (such as the alien invasion of 1896, and the collapse of the American banking system).




Aside from the true life parallels the author/illustrator, a Ms. Sidney Padua, draws with his topics of his endeavor, she has a skill to twist a clever phrase, such as ...

"...Isambard Kingdom Brunel was like the Wolverine of the early Victorians. He was short, ripped, had big sideburns, smoked 50 cigars a day, AND KICKED EVERYONE’S ASS!!
Okay, I don’t know for a fact that he was ripped..."


Well, he probably was, but regardless, do pay 2D Goggles a visit, to keep up with the latest episodes of this very clever work, which is located at:
http://www.2dgoggles.com/

{A tip of the hat to the astute Duke Pearse for locating this gem - ty, sir!}

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

New Babbage: New Babbage Palisaides Aethernautical Society Aetherport Photomontage

The diligent Mr. Haskell has filmed yet another endeavor, this time focusing on the New Babbage Palisades Aethernautical Society Aetherport, and the surrounding environs in the northernmost New Babbage sim. Again, kudos for your efforts, sir!

Monday, April 27, 2009

RL Steampunk: Gatehouse Gazette, Vol. 6



Again, Mr. Ottens has produced an excellent edition of the Gazette, with the the topic "du jour" being "Tinkerking with Time" - alternate histories and deviations that lead and emerge from the Steampunk genre.

Additional topics in this edition include an RL review of a "mad scientist's" wardrobe, an article analyzing the possible changes that Emperor Friedrich III could have had upon historical events, a book review of "The Secret Message of Jules Verne" (involving hidden conspiriesies about the father of Steampunk), and a retrospective of Antwerp and its Steampunk gems. To read these articles, and many more outstanding pieces, please turn to:
http://www.ottens.co.uk/gatehouse/Gazette%20-%206.pdf

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Steampunk Travelogue: Londinium



The Church of St. Boltoph, with its central bell tower in view

A while back, Miss Bamika Esterman kindly provided a LM to a new Neo-Victorian sim, named Londinium. I planned to visit it, but unfortunately a SL project occupied my attention, and I had let a journey to it slip, until recently. As I was working on adding new advertisements for New Babbage merchants, I had passed an eye on the “Neo-Victorina Steampunk” photoline (located on the left side of the blog). I began to notice stunning photographs, and realized that I had failed to visit this new sim! So, I attended to business, so to speak.



An overview of southern Londinium, the hub of activity of Londinium

Upon arrival, one lands in a central TP point (inside a small visitor's center), which provides the background for the Londinium, the basic concepts of their RP, groups, and a status tag (allowing a designation of an “observer” status, for easy exploring). One important thing to know, is Londinium is an adult environment. The rules explain this, and provide detailed criteria on comportment in the sim (e.g. No age play, that is a Victorian sim, tag requirements, ect...). They may, at first blush, seem a bit cumbersome, but after reading them, they do make sense, drawing upon the experience of issues from other RP sims.



A close-up of Londinium's lighting, on the docks of southern Londinium

Upon exiting (and applying an appropriate tag), one arrives at the harbor, with a nautical vessel in a nearby slip and an adjoining airship parked nearby. A notable touch is the beautifully stylized lamps that adorn the port, along the dockway. To the north, on can see the landmark Tower of Londinium, and further north (in the adjoining sim), is a peaceful residential section.



The Theatre of Light and Sound - reminiscent of a classic structure...

Heading south is the main public section of Londinium, which include the Theatre of Light and Sound (with regular performances - akin in appearnace to the Globe), its shopping districts, and the beautiful Lake Vaher. All are exceptionally well designed and built, and it was a pleasure to take a stroll along its streets, even seeing new and unfamiliar Neo-Victorian merchants wares.



The streets of the shopping district

One note – there are numerous adult items and areas (e.g. stores, poseballs, ect...) and some conversation that may be a bit beyond the norm from the average SL Neo-Victorian and Stemapunk sims. If you do not wish to engage in RP or associated activities, do remember to wear your observer tag and follow the Londinium rules.



The serene Lake Vaher, one of the better "small parks" in SL Neo-Victoriana

Overall, the sim is an impressive gem of Neo-Victorian design, rivaling Rivet Town in appearance and architecture. Its environment is atypical from the common SL Steampunk or Neo-Victorian, but even if one does not wish to engage in any of its activities, it is most certainly worth a visit to see the beautiful build that comprises Londinium.



An extended view of one of the business districts of Londinium.

To visit Londinium, please continue to:
http://slurl.com/secondlife/lyonet/171/234/58



A parting photo of St. Boltoph, in the early morning...

Friday, April 24, 2009

New Babbage Events: The Evolutional Ball, at the Piermont Landing



Saturday, the 25th of April, from 6 to 9 pm, will see the next in the wildly successful events at the Piermont, the Evolutionary Ball. In addition to the outstanding hosting of DJ Bats, there will be a Sundial Build Contest, along with a collection of accessories present available for the New Babbage Relay for Life.

For more details, please visit Miss Carver's blog, at:
http://seabreezegal.blogspot.com/2009/04/peirmont-landing-presents.html

Thursday, April 23, 2009

RL Steampunk: The Clockwork Quartet





I would imagine that being a musician is always a challenge (the travel to exotic cities, meeting exciting indvidiuals, galavanting and having a merry time after performances) - especially when one belongs to a Steampunk band of entertainers! Nonetheless, I stumbled upon these talented individuals, and had the opportunity to sample a couple of their tunes, and was pleasantly surprised.



Though labeled as a quartet, the group actually has thireen musicians!

Working together since September of 2008, the Clockwork Quartet, they have been featured by in the Guardian, the Chap, and a plethora of other publications who have marveled at their musical prowess, impressive songwriting, and of course, adherence to the Steampunk genre.



An image from their blog entry on Steampunk Archecture (now I need to find this locale, irl...!)

I'm certainly looking forward to their full album, but for the time being, they have two singles released on their website (and on YouTube, of course). However, to learn more about the Clockwork Quartet, do visit their website at:

and their blog, at:

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

New Babbage, a Photo-montage



Mr. Eddie Haskell, a prolific and astute photographer in SL, took a moment to produce a extensive view of Port Babbage (I think there are a few other locales buttressing against the background, but the bulk is in the Port). The video was produced for those who are a bit new to Steampunk, or in his own words...

Port Babbage is an area of New Babbage, a Steampunk community in the Virtual World of Second Life (www.secondlife.com). The setting reminds the photographer of this film, Second Life's Eddi Haskell, of how a British City would have looked in 1887, at the time of Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee, if Charles Babbage's computer were actually built in 1831. Advances such as electrical power and manned flying machines would have certainly arrived earlier. But coal-based pollution would have tinged the sky a foggy green, ,and required light during daytime hours, just as it did in industrial cities in 1871.

Kudos, sir, on a job well done!

Monday, April 20, 2009

RL Steampunk: Zeppelins Resurrected


QUEST on KQED Public Media.

While not strictly in the Steampunk genre, KQED recently produced a work on the USS Macon, one of the last active zeppelins in the US Navy's fleet of airships. Educational in the basic concepts behind operations and casualty controls involved with zeppelins, but it also touches on the current state of airships in the United States.

For more information regarding this piece, please visit:http://www.kqed.org/quest/television/zeppelins-resurrected

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Advertisements for the Heliograph



(by Henri Meunier - 1897) - Coffee Advertisement

I've been looking at making a few minor changes to the Heliograph, and I'll be starting with the advertisement for SL Steampunk Merchants on the right sidebar. I have seven spots available (more or less). If you are interested in a spot, there are a few criteria for placement, being...

1) The advertisement be 270 x 270 pixels in size
2) Have an appropriate for the Steampunk genre (such as those displayed or those currently on the side bar)
3) Provide a SLurl to the location of the store, and
4) Have a store (or a branch) in one of the New Babbage sims.



Men fitting a package on a ship, for Kakeda Belding Brothers, and Co., Rockville, Conn. (Circa 1890)

Additionally, there is no fee charged to advertise (also known as "free" - I believe it is more important to promote the builders and designers of SL Steampunk, than attempt to squeeze a few dollars/lindens from said persons - money is tight enough!)



(by Will Bradley - 1896) - Victor Bicycles

If you are intersted in a spot, please leave a note here and/or contact me at: rafael_fabre@yahoo.com, to make arrangements. At this point, I'm looking at taking about seven new adverts.(If you currently have an advert on the blog, I'll be contacting you about any necessary modifications to your advisement).

Friday, April 17, 2009

Aether Salon: Submersibles!




This Sunday, from 2 to 3 pm SLT, will be the seventh installment of the Aether Salon, focusing upon Submersibles, in historical fact and speculative fiction. The location has changed...

Due to unforeseen circumstances and the capability to add a "field trip" to the venue in order to show off the CSS Hunley cutaway model of Mr. Kiergarten, the AETHER SALON set for Sunday at 2PM, SLT, at the New Babbage Palisades has relocated to The Auditorium at Artificial Isle (click for SLURL).

The Program will commence with a demonstration of Mr. Jasper Kiergarten's cutaway C.S.S. HUNLEY model, and a description of the build itself (roughly ten minutes). This presentation will be followed by Commodore Hotspur O'Toole of the Fleet of Wrath Exiles. He will lead a general discussion of the development of Submersibles up until the time of the American Civil War, the use of submersibles as weapons of war, and the technology challenges faced by the pioneers of undersea warfare. (roughly twenty minutes)

The program will end with general questions and comments from the audience.

The Aether Salon is a program of volunteer lectures of general interest to the Steamland community of Second Life.

For further information, or to review past transcripts, please visit...
http://aethersalon.blogspot.com/

Thursday, April 16, 2009

SL Steampunk: The New Babbage Cog Archives



Back before the New Babbage Ning, and before the Heliograph, there was the "New Babbage Cog", a regular blog which focused on the city-state from February 2007 to December 2007. Providing up-to-date news of the events in New Babbage, Miss Eggberta Echegaray labored as the editrix of the Cog, and produced this gem of SL Steampunk news, including local events, unspeakable crimes, and updated about the workings of NB.

To read a bit of history, please turn to:

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Steampunk Magazaine, Volume 5



Well, the new edition of Steampunk Magazine is out, which includes an interview of the Chronabelle's Crew (a Steampunk LARP group from the Bay area, a discussion regarding Airships, how to concoct an RL welding machine, and a "User's Guide to Steampunk" by Mr. Bruce Sterling. Be sure to visit it, at:
http://www.steampunkmagazine.com/pdfs/spm5-web.pdf

{A tip of the hat to Mr. DreadPirateBob for the keen eye!}

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Steampunk Travelogue: Paris 1900 and Liberta




At the entrance of the new Paris 1900

While searching for an appropriate locale for an evening’s entertainment, I happened upon a photo of an Eiffel Tower, very similar to the one originally located in Paris 1900, a much admired sim due to its turn of the century representation of Paris. I wasn’t familiar with the sim in question, but decided to pop in to see if there might be any possibility of, say, a nice jazz establishment. Much to my surprise, I ended up at Paris 1900!



Arriving at the Metro, in the stylish "Art Nouveau" entrance



The interior of the Moulin Rouge - a giantic dance hall, one of the biggest I have seen

The view of the Moulin Rouge, the entrance to the subway, and a quick look at the location verified that I was indeed in Paris 1900. However, it was rebranded as part of a larger collection of sims, thirty to be exact, titled “Liberta”. Liberta, from what I’ve seen in their very well done blog (the English translation at - http://www.libertasl.com/en ), is a multi-faceted, French-focused area, with a large amount of classic and new builds located there.



The Museum of Paris, just across from the Moulin Rouge



Seeing the works on display

Though there a many twists and turns to take while exploring Liberta, two sims would be of specific interest to the readers of this blog, the aforementioned Paris 1900, and Paris Eiffel, the sim housing their well built tower. The bulk of the sim is more along the lines of a modern Paris, but classic architecture is melded into the city quite well.



Paying a visit to "Le Cafe des Artists"

Paris 1900 is practically identical to the original Paris 1900, with the exception of flight, which is enabled in this rendition of the sim. The Moulin Rouge, the (elephant), the gigantic dance hall – all hallmarks of the original Paris 1900.



The landmark boards, well done, and highlight the points of interst in Liberta



A peek down the Champs Elysee - much less traffic than in RL (lol)!

To travel from one sim to another, one can simply TP, use the banners at major locales which provide a LM, or perhaps most enjoyable use the “Public Transportation” – The Metro, or in my case, “L’Autobus”. The bus is on a 40 second schedule, and will take one to the major “tourist” locales in Liberta.



The base of the Eiffel Tower - excellent for av and noob watching

I decided to travel to the ultimate Parsian landmark, the Eiffel Tower. The old tower was divided into four sims, and was bit of a challenge to navigate up it. The new Eiffel Tower is on the border of two sims, and using sculpties has allowed for a better representation of it. Additionally, there is relaxation area at its base, which is excellent for the tradition of people/avatar/noob watching.



The "Voyages Extraoridnaires", a Steampunk emporium - easily found by the Dali-esque elephant (right in the photo)



Inside, by its "Lightning Generator" ['sic] on the second floor

Perhaps even more encouraging is the outstanding Steampunk store just across the street from, Voyages Extraordinares. Aside from its outstanding appearance, both inside and out, the Voyages had a cacophony of Steampunk build and items – most certainly worth a visit!



Watching the solar system on the roof of "Voyages Extraordinaires"

Do be aware, that there are about two or three sims that fall into the Neo-Victorian/Steampunk genre, but there are plenty of other buildings from the era/genre interspersed throughout the build (including a representation of the Statue of Liberty along the waterfront (just as in RL). The rest of the sims are modern, but absolutely worth visiting.



Classic construction is replete througout the 30 sims of Liberta

For further information about the “new” Paris 1900, and Liberta in general, please visit the blog at:

http://www.libertasl.com/en/



Lady Liberty at a reduced scale - just as in RL!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

RL Steampunk: Make Magazine, Volume 17



As of late, I have been wrestling with some automotive issues, precluding my relaxing time blogging about the beloved genre. However, even with said modern technological issues, the Steampunk gods smiled upon me this afternoon, and directed me to the local bookseller, where to my good fortune, volume 17 of Make magazine was still on sale! (I had thought that volume was pulled from the shelves.)

This is the "Steampunk" edition, full of very useful and innovative Steampunk mods and ideas, ranging from articles on the "Florence Siphon Arabica Brewing & Extraction Apparatus" (a very clever coffee device, which apparently brews an extraordinary cup of Coffea Arabica), a Wunderkammer (a means of housing and displaying natural oddities - they had an impressive of Peter the Great's collection of human teeth... apparently he viewed himself as an amateur dentist!), to datamancer's tricks aging brass for your favorite pair of goggles!

Below, I have included a small video by Mr. Von Slatt on a Wimshurst Influence Machine, a unique device that is explained in exceptional detail in the "Lost Knowledge" issue (the alternate title for Volume 17)...


Franklin's Bells from Jake von Slatt on Vimeo.

If you are able to, by all means obtain a copy of this little gem - it will disappear off the shelves in May of 2009, so there are a few more weeks to obtain a copy gem! To read more on this, please turn to:
http://makezine.com/17/

Or read more about Make Magazine, at:
http://www.makezine.com/

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Steampunk Video: The Absolutely Shattering Adventures of Professor Marvell

A new CGI feature appears to be slated for this summer and looks intersting, as the designer states...

"The Absolutely Shattering Adventures of Professor Marvell." Steam ethos, enormous mechanical devices, rocket-powered bad guys, and a bit of music from the brilliant Seattle band, Abney Park. Special Thanks to Captain Robert and the Crew for permission to use the music!"

Here's looking forward to seeing it this summer!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

SL Gentlemen's Accoutriments: Moustaches, Part 1



Don Reginaldo's Cigars and Pipes (and more...)

One particularly notable item that the turn of the century was known for (regarding gentlemen), was for unique moustaches and beards. From a classic handlebar moustache, to a bushy Hungarian, from a dashing Dali to the bulky Walrus, unique facial hair was essential "all the rage", at least until the emergence of disposable razorblades, relegating moustaches and beard to casual additions (unfortunately).

However, SL has certain limitations concerning moustaches and beards. To have this kind of panache, one either has to purchase a skin embedded with some sort of facial hair, or acquire a prim addition (moustache/beard) to have the dashing effect of said addition. Finding said items can be a challenge, especially a good moustache or beard, but after sifting through the throng of ladies' dresses, shoes, ect, ect..., I have found a few places that can lead a gentleman into a good direction...

~~~~~~~~~~



DON REGINALDO Cigars and Pipes

Back when I was doing a bit of research for cigars and pipes, I happened upon Don Reginaldo, who aside from having an outstanding cigar and pipe collection (and associated HUD for said items), also has a number of prim moustaches.



Aside from a large selection of moustaches, a good number of hair colors are available to match your own hair! Don Reginaldo isn't on SL Exchange, but his in-world location is at:
http://slurl.com/secondlife/Havana/81/228/22

~~~~~~~~~~



S2L

S2L also has a varied selection of moustaches, as the Van Dyke and the "standard" moustaches are pictured. Also available are a goatee and a "biker" beard (perhaps better for the swarthy dockworker)! A limited selection, but with a menu to allow for your choice of hair color.



To see the full selection, please visit Mr. Slade's SL Exchange location, at:
https://www.xstreetsl.com/modules.php?CategoryID=391&SearchCurrentCategory=on&name=Marketplace&MerchantID=194480&


~~~~~~~~~



For further inspiration for moustaches, please feel free to visit the following sites...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moustache
http://mustachesofthenineteenthcentury.blogspot.com/
http://www.americanmustacheinstitute.org/
http://www.handlebarclub.co.uk/index.php



Finally, if any readers have suggestions for more moustache merchants in SL, please feel free to mention them... I do have two lined up for the next article, but one always remains searching for more of the classic badge of manliness...

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Steampunk Art: Mr. Ignis Ferroque



"Passage" by Mr. Ignis Ferroque

As of late, a good number of high quality Steampunk art has been emerging onto the larger scene, one of which is a German fellow by the name of Mr. Ingis Ferroque. I happen to be quite impressed with the styling and thematic perspective of his work, and it appears that his art (based upon a viewing of is work in his Deviant Art gallery), is heading towards more of a Steampunk direction.



"Thelema" by Mr. Ignis Ferroque

To see more of the gentleman's work, please visit:
http://ignisferroque.deviantart.com/

Saturday, April 4, 2009

New Babbage Video: The Pancake Race

Our own cinematographer, Mr. Loki, produced a video of the Pancake races, but was held up due to various reasons - however, he did release it this morning, and again demonstrates his skills in documenting the events in New Babbage.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Steampunk Events: 03 - 05 April



Only a few events this weekend, but impressive entertainment at that, starting with ...

The New Champange Rooms
Sat, Apr 4, 6-8 pm SLT @
New Babbage Palisaides, New Babbage

The New Champagne Rooms, a traditional 20’s-40’s vintage burlesque theater, is proud to announce the Grand Opening of their new annex in the Victorian steampunk sim of New Babbage. Specializing in all types of vaudeville entertainment for a more genteel Victorian audience, this new theater will make a slight shift in focus from the original theater.For more information or to follow all our shows, please visit http://newchampagnerooms.ning.com/

(Additionally, there is a Friday event at their main location, from 10-11 pm, @ the Jersey Island, so please visit their Ning for further information regarding their schedule!)



Sirens' Kiss Burlesque
Sat, April 4, 2pm – 3pm SLT, @
Smuggler's Cove, Armada Breakaway

The lovely ladies of Sirens Kiss Burlesque return!!
Join us starting this Saturday @ 2 pm SLT and be entertained by the graceful, seductive shimmy and shakes.
http://armada.ning.com/

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

RL Steampunk: The Journal of Neo-Victorian Studies calls for Academic Steampunk papers



"Travelling Companions", by Augustus Leopold Egg, highlighted on the "Neo-Victorian Studies"

I noticed a few days ago on one of my favorite blogs, the "Mark of Ashen Wings", that the editor of said endeavor had a link to a unique location, named the "Journal of Neo-Victorian Studies", a "peer-reviewed e-journal dedicated to contemporary re-imaginings of nineteenth century in Literature, Arts, and the Humanities". The item of note was a "Call for Papers", specifically regarding "Steampunk, Science, and (Neo) Victorian Technologies".

The spectrum of topics is impressive, with seventeen different categories, including...

• Steampunk and the importation/transformation of Victorian aesthetics
• changing narrative “technologies” in Victorian/neo-Victorian fiction
• markets and economics of the Steampunk universe
• science and environmental politics
• Steampunk and the myths of the Industrial Revolution
• redefining the human: intersections with cyberpunk
• Steampunk and old/new/lost world empire(s)
• the terrors of Steampunk in a post-9/11 world
• historicising the Steampunk phenomenon
• gender constructions in Steampunk art, literature, and practice
• mad geniuses: scientists, inventors, doctors, engineers
• Steampunk pasts and futures (e.g. The Difference Engine vs. The Diamond Age)
• modding and maker practices: objects and (neo-)Victorian materialism
• real and imagined difference engines
• scientific (im)practicalities of Steampunk contraptions
• visual Steampunk vs. narrative Steampunk (e.g. graphic novels or movies vs. novels)
cosplay and conventions

However, the criteria for the articles is demanding (between 6000 to 8000 words, and I assume that is without references and according to academic standards - MLA or APA... mm, such a joy). Still, it is very encouraging that the genre is evolving from a "trend" to a topic worthy of further analysis. I am currently working through the previous editions of "The Journal", which cover a wide swath of Neo-Victorian topics (the latest "Call for Papers" was for Neo-Victorian Criminalites - intriguing)!

To read more about the Journal of Neo-Victorian Studies, please turn to:
http://www.neovictorianstudies.com/

and do visit Mr. Dru Pagliassotti's blog (The Mark of Ashen Wings), at:
http://ashenwings.com/marks/