Friday, March 28, 2008

More Japanese Intelligence

Yesterday I checked out a particular sim in the Japanese cluster, called Intelligence. It belongs to yet another Japanese employment company, residing on the Doda website. I can't tell you much about the company, as there was no English page on the website available.

Wikipedia wasn't much help either, as it only writes:

"Doda (Dogri/Hindi: डोडा) is a town and a notified area committee in Doda district in Jammu & Kashmir of India. Or Job change information site in Japan"

As said, the sim is setup in the busy Japanese cluster, next to the marvellous sims of Mirai and Suntory, and is crafted as a futuristic urban sim, which is strengthened by the skyscrapers from some of the other sims surrounding it. There appear to be two main buildings:

A number of smaller buildings and stands can be found across the sim. Some with information and promotional stuff, some with unknown purpose.

As for the jobs... in the two main buildings there are several signs with avatars depicting jobs and japanese advertisements. Inside the main tower, at the center of the sim, is an information room, which I'll call the 'warp core room' as the central information pillar reminds me somewhat of a Star Trek warpcore.

From inside the main Intelligence Tower, the 'warp core room' you can also teleport up into the tower to a room in which you can experience a job, in this instance a Chinese Language Teacher. You have to look hard though, I needed a little help from a Japanese friend to find the teleport. It's located in the 'warp core room', look for a blue door, click it and answer some questions.


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Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Land of the Rising Celts: One to Watch

One of my favorite pasttime (usually late-night) hobby's is tasting whisky. If one thinks whisky, one thinks Scottish and usually ends up with Diageo. Today Diageo is the largest beer, wine and spirits company in the world with dozens of whiskies in it's portfolio, among which the well known "Classic Malt" series. As a lover of this water of life I'm no fan of Diageo though. They have a history. As you can read in Ulf Buxrud's "Lost Distilleries" they have a tradition of mergers and take-overs (under the name of UDV, United Distillers & Vintners and in preceding companies as well), and in the process are responsible for shutting down tons of old and respected distilleries in Scotland over the past 100 years.

Loyal readers of this blog and that of Ambling in Second Life may well be aware of the fact that Diageo has been developing a double sim island in Second Life for some time now. Well, this blog isn't about them. They're still lost in the waters. This blog is about the other whisky sim I've been keeping an eye on since early May (2007): Suntory.

A flashback (summarising previous blog entries):

On may 1 I spotted the Suntory sim at the center of a square of Japanese Sims, but the island wasn't accessible. There was only the logo to show, nothing else. A little later Aleister Kronos doubted it was the right Suntory. For us Europeans all Japanese have similar names and look alike, so there was the option it wasn't the Japanese brewer Suntory. I persisted though as I believed the logo to be of this megasized brewer.

In June the island took shape, but I wasn't really welcome. A few days later the design was torn down and in August I blogged on the new build appearing at the sim. In my opinion it wasn't really corporate anymore, so I started doubting myself.

(see "suntory" label for overview of these posts)

An impression

When returning to the site now, I got prove I was right. This time I took a long stroll through the sim, which in my opinion is aptly themed "Sanctuary"

Upon entering the sim I was placed on a bridge from the busy, crammy Japanese island towards a santuary in the midst of this. Although I've never been able to visit this great culture in Real Life yet, this fits in with my perception of it: Large, stressing techno-savvy cities which open up to sparkling sights of beauty and ancient culture. The feeling I get from this sim is a cross-cultural mix though. It is not what you would perceive as a traditional Japanese sanctuary, but feels like a cross of Japanese and Medieval European tradition and architecture.

On the first platform you'll encounter a sticky wall with shots of the island.

Further on you'll encounter several of the dozens of brands in beverage the company holds or imports, varying from Boss Coffee to Pepsi cola.

Finally I found the way down to the bar, which breathes the atmosphere of a classic "gentlemen's lounge," a place that cries for a good dram. In the bar you'll encounter the whiskies Suntory imports, like the well known Bowmore, Macallan and Glenfiddich, but also their own Suntory brand is present (if only RL pubs would charge these rates!)...

Maybe I'm a bit biased, but I really like this sim. I think it truly is a sanctuary between all the skyscraperish sims surrounding it, breathing ease and relaxation. A perfect atmosphere for a whisky. In itself the build is of an outstanding quality. It is an intricate design and I haven't discovered a single texture out of sync. To me, this sim is more than a brand. It is about a lifestyle.

There's a few points of criticism though. As happens with a lot of sims in Second Life, this one was empty so I couldn't find a tourguide. Most information was illegible to me as it was Japanese. Only the most basic directions were given in English, such as 'Marina', 'Square' and 'Bar' but i really would have liked to know more about the build, the sim and what is going on here.


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Thursday, August 09, 2007

EMI / Virgin and more Japanese Stuff

Al 'superscooper' Kronos and I have made several trips to the Asian parts of Second Life, as we both look forward to welcoming millions of new residents bringing new culture and business to Second Life.

A major new arrival is EMI music / Virgin music Japan which is a hovering platform with two piers filled with small booths where recommended artists are shown and a gallery in the main building.
More can be found on Al's blog in this post


Then there's my obsession with Suntory. I've visited this sim several times before and first recorded that it laid bare for two months, then saw some first designs appear, then something more and now something else completely.

It doesn't look corporate anymore, but it's certainly becoming a nice build

Just across the sim border there's Intelligence, and on the other side there's a tower branded Color Chips, a Japanese ISP. I'm not sure what these companies are all about, maybe our Japanese readers at Second Life Watch 2 or Metaverse Japan would be kind enough to comment...

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Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Suntory Update

Early may I blogged that the Japanese mega-brewer Suntory was entering Second Life. Here's an update.
A few weeks ago I went to take a look and saw nothing much besides some rudimentary blocks marking a rough setup. It was enough to get hold of the name of the person who was building it, but she wasn't very forthcoming.

Today I went in for another peek, while enjoying a Suntory Yamazaki whisky and found a little progress, so let's keep an eye on them...

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Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Virtual Japan

The japanese are coming to Second Life as I noted when I discovered the Suntory sim. I also noted a few other Japanese firms under construction in that same block.

Here are a few pictures from the block, which appears to be a mix of SL and RL companies

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Tuesday, May 01, 2007

SLUC: Suntory enters Second Life

Second Life under Construction

Today I was looking for a specific sim, entered it in the map search and there it was - a complete slumbleupon - Suntory, a huge Japanese corporation is entering Second Life. Suntory is mostly known in Europe for their excellent immitation of Scotch Whiskey (Suntory Yamazaki, Suntory Hibiki etcetera), but is much more than that. It's a multi billion dollar food and beverage conglomerate.

Or as Wikipedia says: "Suntory Limited (Santorī Kabushiki-gaisha?) is a Japanese brewing and distilling company. Established in 1899, it is one of the oldest companies in the distribution of alcoholic beverages. Its business has expanded to other fields, and the company now offers everything from soft drinks to vintage wines. Suntory is headquartered in Dojimahama, Kita-ku, Osaka, Osaka prefecture. In the 1970's, Suntory engaged US pop group, the Carpenters, to advertise its new line of soft drinks."

Off course, the sim isn't accesible, but I took a peek from the neighbouring isles, alas still only water underneath that logo. However, Japan is making a serious move with several commercial, residential and big RL sims in construction mode.

Some more Japanese corps under construction:

  1. Idu co.
  2. HIS
  3. Ameba

And there's more to be found here, but I can't make head or tail from Japanese.


Arriving from Canada SolidWorks (3D/ CAD software)

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