Chinese get their own Second Life
IF your Mandarin is up to scratch then you might fancy a crack at HiPiHi.
No, it’s not the Chinese version of the holiday camp-based BBC 80s sitcom but a souped-up version of Second Life for Chinese-speaking avatars.
endlessinnovation.typepad.com report that it’s packed with cool features like water effects, in-world weather and swimming capabilities for each avatar.
Jason Stoddard, CEO of new media agency Centric, has been giving it a good whirl and says: “The whole surreality of spending time in a Chinese virtual world. It’s a helluva trip. The very fact we’re wandering around in virtual worlds from every corner of the globe and comparing their relative merits is hugely exciting. And then there are the random people who walk up and start speaking Chinese…”
Surprising that, people speaking Chinese in a a Chinese virtual world…
Check out Jason’s full top 10 of reasons for trying HiPiHi by clicking here.
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I don’t speak Mandarin but I’m having a fine time in the Hipihi beta. The Hipihi company has produced some screenshots with English translations of the interface toolbars, dialog boxes, and menus, so any semi-geek worthy of the name ought be to be able to manage – anyone that can do hexadecimal arithmetic should be able to deal with a Chinese menu and a cheat sheet with no problem.
Hipihi has two object editing systems, a prim based system similar to the prims used by Linden Lab and a system of premade, customizable objects of the Hipihi company’s own design.
Although it did take me several days to figure out how to configure Windows to handle Chinese characters in the manner that Hipihi requires, once I found ought it was just a matter of a few mouse clicks.
Hipihi is in beta, it’s still being written, and diplays it’s unfished state, that’s just part the experience of trying a system in it’s formative stages.
Be on the lookout for the interface screenshots with English translation notes on the company’s website and or in its forums; print these out and you should be able able to operate the program without too much trouble.
Second Life builders would be well advised to try out the prim building system. It will feel familiar.
The Second Life and Hipihi producers should work to make prims and sculpted objects portable, thus expanding the market for the builders in both worlds.
The Hipihi company should open source the Hipihi viewer now, this minutes, and thus avoid the long period of bug ridden viewers that plagued Second Life users by bringing every willing and able programmer in the world in on the viewer development team.