Sunday, July 31, 2016

The Virtual Railway Consortium

There are signs along the route showing stations and vehicle traffic.

The Virtual Railway Consortium (VRC) is headquartered at Tuliptree  I suggest you stop there first to read the Information Wall and pick up the landmark folders.

The VRC (Formerly known as the Second Life Railroad) manages the rail lines that circle the Heterocera Atoll and coordinates traffic along the route. The lines cross eighty sims, and there are over sixty landmarks along the way.

To me, this circle of track and multiple stations represent the best of what can be done when Residents and Linden Lab cooperate.

I has been hard to select just a few of the landmarks to show as examples, since each station and site is unique.  Some stations were made by residents and some by the moles of Linden Lab. Right now the SLRR is not running regular trains on the line, but you will find Yavanna's pods and also vehicles from the Second Life Geography Institute on some of the route. Someone suggested that you can "Bring Your Own Engine" so that if you've always wanted to be an engineer you can pick up a free locomotive and run it around the loop. (Don't go too fast, because Second Life may not be able to catch up.)

Here is my short list of landmarks along the loop.

Calleta Station

Calleta Station

It's a bit run down, but then it matches the theme of the area. . While you are in Calleta be sure to visit the areas of Aley Asylum freebies, Hobo Junction, and Wheedles.

Jubata Station

The Station looks pretty ordinary, until you go inside. 


Train hanging over Sword of Damocles Diner

If you look down the track to the right, you can see the installation made by Reger Difference hanging over his Sword of Damocles Diner. You can also see a bit of the Great Wall up the hill, which is worth a visit.

Lapara Station and Old Lapara Town 

Interesting things all over town. Here are some 'jelly deer'.

Lapara Station is haunted, but I assure you the ghosts are friendly.  When you visit,  be sure to take the trolley tour.

Tenera Station

There were several station-building contests. This one was a winner.

Some of the earlier station-designing contests limited prim use, but later contests allowed more. You have to step back quite a ways to see that this station is sheltered by a giant robot. The nearby Crumbi station shows how you can build on a triangular plot.  If you look down the hill behind the robot, you can see the Second Life Volunteer Center.

Lappet Station and Brightside Station 

View from Brightside Tower towards Lappet Station

If you get off at Lappet Station you can walk across the tracks and catch a monorail to Brightside Station. In addition to a nice display of rail equipment and an interesting station, Brightside also has a small train line of its own.

Bhaga End Station

About all that remains of the great steamworks
 that used to be in the area are some signs and
 this green pissoir. (Don't disturb the occupant.)

Nearby is an operating ferry dock.


The safe is open and empty. What's the story here?
Melanthia Station is apparently a distribution center for local dairy products.


Radioactive Plusia 

 Look by the back fence for LDPW Fan Club stuff.  There is also a train turntable behind it.


A nice watercolor from the time that VCR was SLRR
Check the nearby market area for a Monty Python reference, and visit the public pier and beach.

Pavonia End Station 

An old traction engine behind the old building, and an old
LDPW beam engine inside the building. 

Go past the building and the traction engine and you will come to a part of SL Route 6, The High Mountain Road.

Run your own train:

Here I'm racing down the tracks in my free Hobo Train. (I felt the flying 
monkey avatar was appropriate.)
At several places along the route you can pick up different free trains. If you rezz them near the tracks they will automatically find their way, and driving is simple.

Have fun!

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Route 14

The lovely brick road was made by Abnor Mole.

This is one of my favorite roads, although it is relatively short.  There are vehicle rezz spots along the way, but it is easier to stop and read the Map Kiosks if your vehicle is a wearable bike.
SL Route 14.PNG
Map from the Second Life Wiki
Route 14 doesn't connect with other roads, but starts near Sandy Trunks Beach and passes by Seven Chickens Bridge, Dead Mole's Curve, until it reaches the End of the Line Inn.
View of road and map kiosk

Sandy Trunks Beach (1)

Seven Chickens Bridge (2)

Dead Mole's Curve (3)

End Of The Line Inn (4) 

See if you can find where the Innkeeper kept his booze.  There may be hidden treasure there!

There used to be a road extension connecting Route 14 to the 3-N-1 Club, and I've read that the Club used to give out free scooters to their patrons. Alas, the extension and the Club are no more. In fact, while I was trying to find if there were traces of the old road I found ban lines instead.

I've also been told that a long time ago residents had requested that Route 14 be joined to Route 13, not too far away, but it seemed there were reasons that couldn't be done.  One of the pod tours gets from Route 14 to Route 13 by travelling over some abandoned property.

By the way, I just bought a 512 in Grolphook on Route 14.  I'm hoping to make it a center for information about roads in Second Life. There's not much there now, but you are welcome to stop in and look around.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Okema, Nakiska & Southern Railway, otherwise known as ONSR

Signpost at Smithers Bluff in Smithers Firth Land

I'm only putting in a few slurls here, because when you land at
you will see the large mapboard (shown above) which will give you a list of all the stops and more information about the Railway.
ONSR started as a private build. Resident Veronica Quackenbush worked to get the right of way, and Kitto Flora scripted cars and switches. Later Linden Lab commissioned Kitto Flora to build the extension of ONSR all the way to Wengen, so now the Railroad crosses 13 sims and serves ten stops or stations.

Some train cars on a siding - you may also
 see other trains and pods travelling part of the route.

Although the sign and the notecard list Smithers Firth Station as #12, I prefer to start at Smithers and head towards Wengen. The Snowlands along the route are lovely, and it is especially beautiful at night when the lights are casting colored shadows on the snow. At Egan you may want to stop at D.J. Station and take the personal-sized ferry across to Qie Niangao's large map of Mainland Railroads.

Okema Gorge

At Wengen, look past the Chalet towards the platform by the Alpine road, where the Moles have made an Aureole viewing area complete with a Hot Moley Spud Oven and a Ginger Beer Dispenser. If you're lucky, you might see the Aurora.

I'm going to need a bigger avatar...

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

The Great Second Life Railway

The Great Second Life Railway was started in the early days of Second Life. The first station was set up in Slate, and the first track went to a sandbox in Olive.  Right now the red cars run relatively frequently between Mocha and Purple, and you will also see some Yavapods on part of the route.

Athos Murphy was the resident who had the idea of copying railroad designs from 1890 to 1930 and who helped design the route and even built some of the stations. You can get a notecard he wrote describing his plans from dispensers near some stations.
Map in Slate Station showing the proposed route.
I propose starting at Mocha Station, near the Mocha Cathedral.

Along the scenic GSLR route.

The next station is in Olive, where the track splits. One loop goes around Jopsy Pendragon's magnificent builds, and I highly recommend taking the detour.  Olive Station is at

The next stop is Slate. This is the first station, and looks quite small compared to most of the newer stations. . Across the tracks from the train station you will find a balloon ride that will take you to multiple destinations. 

Periwinkle Station is next. - the grounds around the station include some older visitor information, gifts, a nice park and  a playground.

Last stop on this continent is the Purple Dock Station and the Purple Ferry Terminal. They are close together so I am just giving you the slurl for the station.

Walk towards the water to take a ferry to Cecropia.

From the dock here you can take the ferry across the ANWR passage to Cecropia. To teleport use the slurl but it is more fun to take the ferry. There have been days when I haven't been able to find a ferry, if that happens, you can just fly across. 
GSLR Ferry

Midway between Purple and Cecropia sims is the ANWR Rig (I understand that is named after the acronym for the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.) This is where primoleum is pumped out of the ground and made into prims. The ferry makes a short stop there in both directions.

After Cecropia, I don't think the GSLR continues; however, there is a Pod tour to take you from the Cecropia Station to the Station in Calleta.

If you are wondering about the green pool near the station in Cecropia, it's the Grief Containment Holding Facility.

This is how the route was supposed to continue. 
Next stop, the Virtual Railway Consortium, which has tracks crossing over 80 sims!

Friday, July 1, 2016

Where to Get Freebies in Second Life

Second Life is full of freebies, and you can go nuts trying to collect all of them. This is only a partial list of freebie sources listed with slurls. You can get a notecard with locations listed with Landmarks at the Tourist Information Center in Cecropia. Some places will automatically give you a landmark when you visit, or you can make your own. In either case you can add a note in the description column of the landmark or on the notecard so that you can find the place again.

Freebie Sources - Not in any particular order.

1. In your inventory, at the very bottom, you will find "Library" - look in there, you will find lots of things, including a large pink flamingo....

2. In the Marketplace you can put in the name of what you are looking for and then put "0 to 0" in the price search box and look for freebies there.

3. "Official" Freebie Sites:

Mole Mart: Building supplies - Road signs, pavement textures, other useful things made by the moles.

Nautilus Warehouse:, textures, and other items appropriate for Nautilus.

 Stillman Bazaar : - a small but well-curated selection of items and textures. Here you can also find Old Library Inventory.

Help Island Public:  - are some things here you might not see elsewhere, and also a lot of information for new residents.

NCI at Kuula: - not only a well-organized assortment of freebies, but there is often a volunteer here who will be able to help you if you have any questions. Look over by the info counter for an info notecard that has good advice on finding free or inexpensive clothing.

Bay City Airport: - look on and behind the counter marked "Bay City".

Bay City Community Center: a large room full of assorted freebies.

Port of Kama City in Zindra (note this is an adult location): Go up the stairs and left past the first two columns. The dispenser has mostly large structures.

Other spots:

The collected works of Arcadia Asylum and her alts (including Aley Arai, Lora Lemon, and Aley Resident) are also available on the Marketplace at AleyMart, but you can see them in person at the two spots below.)

Calleta:  A nice collection of
Arcadia Asylum's Slum City objects in two old buildings and around the area. Be sure to go upstairs to see the reproductions of old video games. !

Mieville Pond - Arcadia Asylum Library: around the water and under the water. There are buildings with vendors, but many of the items have been rezzed so you can see what they look like, rather than just seeing their picture on a dispenser. There's even a circus tent!

New Resident Services: Lots of helpful advice and free items - This area is supported by a private group.

Freebie Galaxy: fourteen floors of freebies. Be advised that I have seen things for sale here that were free elsewhere, but it is certainly worth visiting at least once. Look out for griefers.

Sky High Freebies: this one is new to me - just a big square of small shops, but what I liked about it is the fact that many of the small items are rezzed so that you can see what they look like.

Newbie World: - boxes and boxes of things, and some rezzed examples. Also an amusement park, dance club, and "Newbie University".

NCI at Hanson: (quieter than Kuula, and in snow country)Hanson was an infohub area which was turned into parkland. Go over the bridge to find an old Gingerbread Cottage, a sled ride, and the amazing disappearing moles!

Simple's Zoo of All Things: In the Mountain Retreat area you can find boxes and boxes each containing multiple items, but you should climb up to the top and explore the other areas There's even a place where you can go hang-gliding!.

Virtual Railway Consortium Headquarters in Tuliptree: Everything you need to build your own railway system - lots of good information here, and a free locomotive!

.Chilbo: One of many communities which have a focus on education: - Start at Town Hall and do the tour - you will find freebies almost everywhere, mostly geared towards educators.

Freebies from Hunts: Hunts are a popular activity in Second Life. Merchants like them, because they get customers into their stores, and hunters like them because they get the fun of a hunt, and free or inexpensive items. You get a landmark for the start of the hunt and look for the hunt object - when you've found it, it gives you a prize and the landmark to the next store or location. Hunts vary tremendously, my favorite is the Silk Road Hunt, which in 2016 had 66 merchants participating and introduced me to many new places to spend money....

SL Hunts: Actually this location mainly has a directory to their website:, but it is good to know they have an in-world location as well.

Fashion freebies: I have to admit that I'm not a clothes shopper, but an NCI volunteer has put together an excellent notecard on how to get free and inexpensive fashion. Pick up her notecard by the information desk at NCI Kuula and some other locations, and look on the schedule for her classes.

Scripts: My current viewer has a "Script library" button under the "Content" tab which directs you to a website, but there are other online sources for free scripts - you just have to look. If you want to make your own scripts, the Second Life College of Scripting, Music, and Science has inworld free tutorials, although you can buy the lessons as a collection.
Some Notes: Just because something is free doesn't mean it is without value. Many generous residents like to share their talent. Other times new businesses may want new customers to try out their products.

A sad fact is that some merchants will re-sell freebies, especially on the Marketplace. It is good to know what is available for free before you pay for something that someone meant to be free (I've done that). Remember the pink flamingo in your Library? Gee, there is an identical one for sale on the Marketplace for 5 lindens.

Sometimes, though, what looks like a copy of a freebie may be an old item that has been re-made with sculpties or with mesh, so always check carefully before jumping to conclusions. If you feel you have found someone selling a 'free' item it is courtesy to notify the original creator so that, if they are interested, they can notify the Marketplace cops.

Sometimes older items are free because they have a high prim count. It is always a good idea to open freebie boxes in a sandbox. Even if an item has more prims than your budget can afford, you may be able to take it apart to see how it is made, or there may be some parts you can salvage.

Even if you never collect one freebie, I suggest you visit a few freebie sites to get an idea of what is available.

By the way, once you've started collecting freebies, you should know that both Builder's Brewery and Happy Hippo offer free classes on "Managing Your Inventory".

About Telehubs and Infohubs

In Second Life you used to be charged not on how much land you had, but on how many resources you used. You could be charged for creating and keeping prims, or for teleporting. There was a regular maintenance fee/tax for objects that were created but hadn't been deleted, so I've heard that residents who had high-prim builds would temporarily delete them before "prim-counting day". (I don't know if that is true - I wasn't there - I read it on the net.)

Most residents also had to pay in order to teleport. (There were ways to get around this). You couldn't teleport from place to place, but only to other residents or to a telehub. Telehubs were set up in different locations, and residents would teleport to a telehub close to their destination and then walk or fly to where they wanted to go. Ryan Linden designed the original telehub and called them "perches" with the idea that they would all be up in the air, but since residents sometimes fell off, the elevated telehubs were soon lowered to the ground. Eric Linden and Alberto Linden continued to improve the design, and the term "perches" was changed to "telehubs" after Phoenix Linden started calling them "telehubbies".These telehubs had kiosks that distributed free Linden content, world maps, and places for resident to put ads.  
Telehub Map from Stillman Telehub, 12-13-2005, from the Second Life Wikia - the red pins mark "Points of Interest" rather than telehub locations. You can see that Second Life was still relatively small then.

Linden Lab had hoped that areas around telehubs would become commercial areas and that the outskirts would become residential while the telehubs would become social areas.  This being Second Life; however, residents didn't do what was expected. While areas close to the telehubs often became crowded with stores and ad farms, people usually didn't hang around to socialize.  One of the problems was that the concentration of people and buildings near the telehubs caused lag.

On November 27, 2005 Robin Linden, writing in the old Second Life Blog, announced the decision to remove the telehubs and replace them with Point-to-Point teleporting. Most residents were happy; however the landowners who had paid a premium for the land close to the telehubs were not. Eventually Linden Lab agreed to pay a refund to any of those property owners who requested it. 

Some of the Infohubs on the World Map are official Linden Infohubs, and others are infohubs that are being supported by residents. You may find spots on the World Map where a landowner has put up a floating signboard that looks like an Infohub symbol in order to get more traffic, but these are not official. I know of no active Linden Telehubs, but there are some telehubs on private estates. The Waterhead Infohub is a remodeled telehub.

Waterhead Infohub, formerly a Telehub

You can still get models of three of the old Infohubs from the Free Bazaar at Stillman. Two of the models are rather plain, but the Waterhead model still has a freebie board, working clock, and a place for residents to place ads.

The new infohubs were now intended to be places where residents could set a home point, and where they could meet other residents and socialize. New infohubs have been built as Second Life expanded.  Many infohubs have tutorials and other information for residents, or they may have a nearby NCI infonode (smaller version of the information at the Main NCI locations). Many infohubs are being maintained by residents, so there is a tremendous variety of build from infohub to infohub. During my visits to collect slurls and landmarks I found most of the infohubs had visitors, with a mixture of new and old residents.

You can find a list of Infohubs on the Second Life Wiki. I have put an annotated list below.

If you are curious about what these Telehubs looked like, you can visit the Waterhead Infohub, or you can get a package of three different telehub models at the Stillman Bazaar.
This is the poster I made for the Tourist Information Office. It shows an old telehub on the top, and the Waterhead Infohub on the bottom.
This is what an infohub symbol looks like on the World Map. Check the box near the symbol if you want to see infohubs when you are exploring.

Here is a list of infohubs on the Mainland I got from the Second Life Wiki, with my notes. If the landmarks don't work, just put the sim name in the World Map, and look for the symbol. You can also just put "Infohub" in the space on the World Map. You can get a copy of a notecard with Landmarks in the Tourist Information Center in Cecropia.



Hanja in Gukyeol

The Old Teen Welcome Area in Card

Old Governor's Mansion in Clementina

Mahulu Infohub near Mount G'Al Volcano - you can take a balloon ride from the roof!

Mauve Infohub -

Miramare in Nova Albion /Barcola

Chalet Linden in Wengen snow area - one of my favorites! - Lots of winter activities there.


Korea 1 in Korea1 - There is a teleport board listing "Sister Cities and Friends" - although some locations seem to be out of date.

Scenic Ambat

Barbarossa Ferry Terminal & Infohub - pick up a free sailboat!

Bear Dream Lodge in Bear - Weasels and watermelon critters, and bears, oh my!

Boardroom Infohub and Conference Center

Braunworth Infohub - refurbished industrial ruins

Castle Valeria - I find the castle a bit gloomy; the other side of the island is more cheerful.

Degrand Infohub - little island with lighthouse - if you have a boat you could sail from here. There are interesting underwater features such as the Lost Treasures of the Sunken City in Sarante.

Hau Koda - Bay City Municipal Airport -

Helfell InfoHub - Fuerte de San Phillipe nearby is also a Linden Public Area - if the drawbridge is up, touch it to lower it.

Hyannisport Infohub - in my opinion one of the most beautiful of the Infohubs

Hyles Swamp in Hyles

 Iris Moth Temple - Linden Historical Site

 Isabel Infohub  - the very popular Shelter is just north of here

Moose Beach Infohub

Pooley Stage

Waterhead Welcome Area - This is a recreation of a telehub. You can get a copy of the original telehub model at  the Stillman Bazaar.

Zebrasil Infohub, billed as "The village in the shadow of terrible volcano!" The volcano goes off about every hour and is quite nice. Explore under the sea  nearby for wrecked ships.

ADULT: (I found these crowded and boring)

Arapaima Safe Hub -

Nelsonia Safe Hub

Oritz Dam Infohub

Listed as 'Former' or 'Inactive' (These were more interesting and worth visiting)

Anzere Infohub - By the Confederation of Democratic Simulators  - a virtual democracy

Calleta Hobo Railroad Infohub - this whole area is fun to explore

Hanson - this Infohub was converted to parkland, but there is a gingerbread cottage and sled ride over the bridge and up the hill, and also penguin/moles.

Murray Infohub - this was rebuilt in 2010 and has many sims to explore nearby. Look for the ghost town and the vehicle testing tracks - also, beware of landsharks...Free sailboat at the dock - or an innertub if you're not that adventurous.

Plum Welcome Area - Preserved old Welcome Area, including the notecards...

Ross Memory Bazarr @ Ross Infohub - lots of interesting things here.

Violet Infohub - always seems to be some kind of argument going on when I am there, but very popular...

Warmouth Infohub - the Nerditorium

Olive - Great Second Life Railway Station, with frequent trains - take a trip!

Periwinkle Station - go down the stairs to visit a lovely garden and rest area. There are some freebies on a floating gazebo.

Those are all the Mainland Infohubs I know that are open to all residents. Have fun!

Free copy of Waterhead Telehub

Most of this information was taken from the Second Life Wikia which has photos of some of the early telehubs. I wasn't there then, so if you were, and I've got something wrong, please let me know.