Ginger Mandelbrot, a Hursley master inventor of some note has created something that I found fascinating both in Second Life and with real life potential.
He has built a ticking, rotating slat machine in Second Life to prototype an amazing cool idea.
The “timeframe”, currently previewing on Hursley private island ticks over the seconds using a collection of black and white slats, not unlike an old fashioned notice board. It represents, each second, a unique point in time by the status of the slats. This is also a date not just a time, and that is important as you will see.
In this video you can see CJ, Ginger and I waiting for a significant slat rotation.
Here is a still of a point in time on the timeframe from snapzilla
I asked Ginger to explain his thoughts on this, and this is where it gets really clever the second quote for the non unix geeks.
“The TimeFrame displays good-old geeky Unix time, which started on 1-Jan-1970, and will count the seconds until a fateful day in Jan 2038 when it rolls over the 31st digit and either goes very negative, or back to zero again, depending on how your applications decide to handle it. There will be (or was, depending on when you read this) a fairly momentous moment on 20th March this year at 15:38 GMT, when the 26th digit rolls over. The 27th digit won’t roll over until Apr 2008. ”
“it’s a piece of “conceptual art” that has a genuine purpose (unusual!). I’ve been thinking about it for a while, as something to build in FL, but it would be quite hard to build and expensive, so I thought I’d prototype it in SL so I could see if it’s really as cool as I imagine it’s going to be! It’s basically a clock, inspired by those indicator boards they sometimes have at train stations, with the slats that flip over with that lovely clacking sound. It’s reallly hypnotic to watch, but also has a real purpose: do you know when Google Earth did the last fly-by of your house? No, of course not. But if you have a TimeFrame in your garden, then next time you get snapped by a satellite or a fly-over, you’ll have a lovely bar-coded timestamp right there on the photo!”
So did you get that, you put one of these in your real life garden, and you get a unique timestamp of anything that takes a photo. Of course it works in SL too. I am going to run one as a HUD. A unique barcode timestamp on any picture.
When you think about this, which I have now, you have to say wow!
A timeframe has been placed on IBM 1 on Hughes Marina outside the Virtual Universe Community clubhouse