Faces of InWorldz – Wolf Hartnell

Today I had the pleasure of meeting with Wolf Hartnell. I have known OF him for as many years as I’ve been in InWorldz, but had never had a chance to chat with him, so this really was very nice. Today he appeared as a wolf, which of course seems entirely appropriate. ~

wolfhartnellinterview-1

Moonrise Azalee: Well, first of all, I would really like to thank you for taking the time to chat with me this morning!Or more rightfully, evening for you!

Wolf Hartnell: Indeed! And very much my pleasure. I’m honored that you asked πŸ™‚

Moonrise Azalee: So to start, how long have you been in InWorldz for?

Wolf Hartnell: Coming up on five years I think. Sometime in December. The 11th according to my profile πŸ™‚

Moonrise Azalee: grins – What brought you to InWorldz originally? How did you find out about it?

Wolf Hartnell: Well I started in Second Life back in 2004 or 2005. Really loved it there in the early days but got very jaded about it as time went on and the money became everything to Linden Lab. I’ve known Teal over there almost as long, and she told me about InWorldz so I came to take a look. I loved it immediately. Great prices for someone who loves to build and script. Fantastic community. And it felt like “home” more than SL ever did. Teal being here helped πŸ™‚ We were partnered a few months later πŸ™‚
Moonrise Azalee: Really? I had no idea you had been partnered for so long! Congratulations! What were your first impressions of InWorldz once you got here and started diving in a bit?

Wolf Hartnell: Thank you πŸ™‚ . The community most of all at first. I was lucky enough to initially rent land from Alex and Prax, on the same region as their library at the time. They were so friendly and helpful, and introduced me to a lot of wonderful artists and creators here. Teal introduced me to many more too. Then I realised I could afford a region here and that was it – I was hooked! Building and coding like a crazy man and loving it! LOL

Moonrise Azalee: Were there any problems or challenges that you faced when you first got here and adjusted from the larger grid to the smaller one?

Wolf Hartnell: Not really. I think the only struggles for me were not being able to find a lot of mens’ clothes and a adjusting to a different (but so much faster) scripting engine. Mostly it combined the adventure of early Second Life, the great community and a world of opportunity. I could live with only a few changes of clothes πŸ™‚

Moonrise Azalee: Oh, the lack of men’s clothes! Yes, I do think that has slightly improved! But definitely a challenge for other male avis I have encountered also!

Wolf Hartnell: Yes! We tend to be a way behind the women’s designers for stuff – but I suspect we are less bothered, being fashion lazy as we are πŸ™‚ Don’t tell Teal but one of the advantages of being a quad wolf every so often is not having to wear anything – LOL

Moonrise Azalee: LOL, I won’t tell *quickly scribbles it down*

Moonrise Azalee: Now that you have been here for a while, what are your thoughts, or most specifically what improvements have you noticed over the years?

Wolf Hartnell: Hmmm, goood question. The technology has matured a great deal and that matters to me a lot. I know that we still have some niggling issues (like texture downloads) but it’s easy to forget just how much has come along, like vehicles and new scripting functions, border crossings etc. They make a huge difference and going back to Second Life feels like going back in time. As a scripter things run so much faster here. There are things I do here that would never work in Second Life. So I really appreciate all the work that goes in behind the scenes.

Moonrise Azalee: I was sailing back in that ‘other’ gridΒ not long ago, and although there are a million of lovely boats to choose from, those sim crossings can still plummet you to the depths of the ocean!

Wolf Hartnell: Yes absolutely! It’s amazing what a small dev team have managed to achieve. As a programmer in real-life I have a sense of the scale of this thing and it’s incredibly complex. I also love the extra options they have added for land, like the 2x2s. We are sitting on one of those right now and I could never have afforded to do this stuff on a full region, even at InWorldz prices. Besides, here I get to script boats and trees and gadgets and lights and magic and anything I like. Beats the heck out of soulless bank systems in real life πŸ™‚

Moonrise Azalee: yes! It does, and it brings me to my next topic. When I came to InWorldz about 4 years ago, yours was the first weather system I had ever used, and then not long after my first working boat I had ever purchased was from your store. Can you tell me a bit about your projects and what you work on here?

Wolf Hartnell: That’s gratifying to hear πŸ™‚ Projects, hmmm. Where to start – LOL. Most of what I create comes from either something I need, or something other people need. The forest planters came out of not wanting to manually plant a forest on our home region – LOL. Then Teal told me to sell it and make some money πŸ™‚ The boats because I didn’t like the ones I tried and wanted to see if I could make “better” ones – better for me anyway. The weather, again for us first.
At the moment, for example, I am working on new stuff for the marketplace, because we need one, a rentals website and ‘a places to visit’ website, because we need those. Builds and devices for Fall Fest and Winter Fest …Some more landscaping tools, animated cats, lots of bits and pieces, and a huge spaceship for the Golden Touch show.
I think that’s about other than many back burner projects πŸ™‚ All things that people have asked for or community stuff really

Moonrise Azalee: I made my first Market purchase the other day. The kiosk I signed up at was on your region and you have many shops and such. Also I will add that the Marketplace experience was quick and very easy. I was quite pleased.

Wolf Hartnell: Thank you, I’m glad πŸ™‚ It still needs a lot of work but I wanted it to open so people could start using it. I’m kind of a perfectionist so it won’t ever be finished, I’ll keep tweaking and improving it. I see these things as journeys rather than destinations

Moonrise Azalee: I think that Β sort of project is definitely a lot more work than some people realize, and I for one am very thankful to you for taking the time to create this for the community.

Wolf Hartnell: It’s usually a lot more work than I realise too – LOL. I have a problem with underestimating the work required to do something, even after 35 years of coding. I think it’s because I would run away screaming if I let myself realise how long it would really take πŸ˜‰

Moonrise Azalee laughs – Well Im glad you underestimated it, otherwise you would have done the ‘run away screaming’ thing and we wouldn’t have a marketplace! πŸ˜€

Wolf Hartnell: LOL – indeed! It’s a great project to work on though and people have been wonderful in supporting it (and me). The group is incredibly supportive and I get great feedback about the helpful people in there too. They give me the time to keep coding while they support each other. It’s wonderful πŸ™‚

Moonrise Azalee: What do you like most about InWorldz, now that you have been here a little while? What do you think sets it apart from other grids? or ‘THE’ other grid?

Wolf Hartnell: Hmm, another good question. {ponders} I think it still has to be the people more than anything else. Not only do we have a fantastic community, but we have huge talent here. Amazing builder, scripters and visionaries. Golden Touch is a good example. Calliope Andel has amazing vision, and has pulled together a brilliant team to realise those visions, but she wants to have everyone explore their ideas and skills more than her own role. I have seen people grow immensely in that group. The shows are unmatched, but it’s the people behind it and how they nourish and nurture each other that is so very rare. I have never seen that anywhere else in any life, and it’s incredibly precious.
Moonrise Azalee: Do you have any favourite events or memories that really stand out for you?

Wolf Hartnell: My first month here. Teal and I kind of had a pre-partnership honeymoon. We spent pretty much every day exploring some of the amazing builds and places in InWorldz. Went to some amazing places and met amazing people. It wasn’t planned that way but we just did it and partnered at the end. That stays with me as the defining “bonding” experience for me and InWorldz I think, as well as Teal obviously πŸ™‚ I still haven’t lost that wonder at this world. Sadly many of the places and people have gone now, but they have been replaced by others, and that experience awoke so many ideas in me that I will never run out of things to do here, only time to do them all πŸ™‚ And every Golden Touch show πŸ™‚Β *Wolf passes me a photo*

the-moment_-pasithea-medieval-fantasy-pasithea-106-130-79

Moonrise Azalee: Ooh! Beautiful photo!

Wolf Hartnell: I know it’s a bit sappy – but that picture is my greatest memory – as were exploring the now sadly lost Pasithea

Moonrise Azalee: Not sappy at all, very touching. One of the goals of this blog that Leanna and I write is to definitely try to find the places and experiences that people enjoy, and to share them so that those unfamiliar with InWorldz, or new here can get some ideas on what is possible here.

Wolf Hartnell: That’s my aim with the “places” website too. There are so many amazing places to visit here and most people never find them. It’s coming soon and I hope it will promote those places to existing residents and new ones.
Moonrise Azalee: That’s really a wonderful aim. Are there any other future projects you are going to undertake, or other goals in mind?
Wolf Hartnell: There are a few other web projects I am working on. One of the reasons for the time taken with the marketplace is the system it all runs on. That is much bigger and more sophisticated than it needs to be for just the marketplace but it will run a lot of other integrated services too. My aim is to combine the technologies so that InWorldz becomes far more powerful in user and business services and tools than any other grid. Lofty aims I know, but it’s something I am very eager to do.
…On a personal note though, I am working on making dragons πŸ™‚ Ones that you can either be, or have as bots. Lots of backstory and magic. Possibly a few regions as a community. It’s a passion but it’s going to take a lot of work to realise πŸ™‚

Moonrise Azalee: Oh wow! That sounds really great, all of it! – the dragons included! As far as the community regions, what sort of theme or joint venture would that be geared toward?

Wolf Hartnell: I am working on a backstory, based on combined dragon myths and a lot of my own ideas. The community would be fantasy themed, with rituals and training actually coded into the dragon behaviour, but with lots of flexibility, So tinies can stop their dragons growing when they are babies and still ride them for example. Breeding of a kind but more complex. And the community built around that. Special homes to rent with dragon space, very fantasy, meeting places, events and so forth. I was so inspired by Pasithea (from that picture) that I wanted to do dragons here – that was such a beautiful build, and had a whole region that was actually a dragon made of lava terrain. Amazing!

Moonrise Azalee: I wonder if that was before I was here, I have not heard of that place. It sounds like it was lovely! Before we wrap up here, are there any final comments or thoughts you’d like to share?

Wolf Hartnell: I think I would just like to say that what I see most of all in InWorldz is potential. A lot of the community projects I work on, like the events, often get negative responses and there can be a lot of negativity on the forums at times. We do have our problems but we have incredible potential here. We already have amazing people and wonderful builds, but what I see more than anything is that potential. I truly think we have barely scratched the surface of what we can do here and it excites me tremendously to be here right now to see all of that grow. I really am thrilled to be part of it.

Moonrise Azalee: I think that forums, and places like Facebook and really any place that is solely online – hidden by random textual comments is prone to a lot of hostility. It can be amazing, or horrible. All in one.

Wolf Hartnell: Exactly. Sadly it can be someone’s first and only impression of our world. I am working hard to change that, as are you πŸ™‚

Moonrise Azalee: Yes! I found that once I left the forums alone, not just for InWorldz, but for many places, it was a lot more peaceful. Funny how even for virtual world forums, where I myself have admittedly got into some rows with people, once we met avi to avi, it was quite different. The hostility somewhat defuseΒ once we are forced to meet ‘one on one’ most times.

Wolf Hartnell: I’m lucky in a way. I have Asperger’s Syndrome which makes real life communications with people quite challenging for me. InWorldz is wonderful in that regard too, because nobody gets body language or facial expressions, or voice tone most of the time. It’s a level playing field for me. What is does do is give me some insights into ho much of a problem that is for other people though, to suddenly miss those things. And people’s brains try to fill the gap. We don;t just drop those things, we try to guess them. I have actually seen someone get very annoyed in a conversation because they thought the other person was bored when actually it was just a fidgety AO! Forums are worse, we assume context as well as mood and we often get it horribly wrong, but we don’t realise that it isn’t real. It’s just our brain filling the gaps.

Moonrise Azalee: Yes, textually things are taken very out of context easily. And you make a good point, about how because we aren’t using body language, but say like here, in conversation we are having to directly express — with emotes like ‘smilies’ or winks etc. On forums this happens also, but often people are there not to necessarily ‘communicate’ like you and I are doing right now, but instead are trying to be ‘right’.

Wolf Hartnell: Absolutely. Not a discussion, but a battle πŸ™‚

Moonrise Azalee: Right! Well Wolf, I have really enjoyed our chat here today. I would like to thank you so much for taking the time to meet with me today. It has been a pleasure to get to know you better. Again, thank you for all your contributions and for being such an active part of the InWorldz community!

Wolf Hartnell: Very much my pleasure and honour, and thank you for your time, and all you are doing to get the word out to people about what we do here πŸ™‚

~

Here is a landmark that will take you to a good starting point, from there you can teleport to other places, or simply zoom out and hop about! This particular landmark has Wolf’s ‘ self planting forests on display. There are a variety of seasons as well as fences as more. A wonderful way to more efficiently landscape your area!

http://inworldz.com:8002/region/Dreamchaser/140/132/23

And of course, if you have not checked it out, please visit theΒ new Marketplace that Wolf has created. Β To read more about this, take a look at the article Leanna wrote about it here.Β 

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