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Doings in the Palace
Chat Cosmos
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Bruce Damer's Interview with Coyote and Mr. Rotten
You can also find this interview (abbreviated) at Zenda Online Conversations at Minds Palace

I have been interviewed twice in The Palace. One reason The Palace is so good for interviews is that you can save the log of all conversations. Another reason is that many people can get into the interview area and participate. The first interview I did was for Artificial Intelligence Watch, a British computer science newsletter. I was able to do this while on vacation in July 1996, up in the woods outside Seattle on a friend's Internet connection. This also saved huge telephone charges (to call London).

The second interview I did was for Fabrice Florin, of Zenda, creator of innovative environments and games for citizens of virtual worlds. Fabrice produced Minds Palace for Howard Rheingold, working with cartoonist Jim Woodring, and ìspoon manî Mark Petrakis. Minds Palace, as a first-rate social spot in The Palace cosmos, holds regular interviews and publishes them later on their Web site at http://www.minds.com. I was recruited for such an interview, so showed up early in the dressing area of Minds Palace. You can connect to Minds Palace by choosing File È Connect and entering minds.palace.com.

Digi gets a dressing down

I had arrived early at Minds Palace for my interview, nervous as a mare in the springtime. It wasn't exactly like appearing on the Tonight Show, but I still wanted to look my best.

I arrive at Minds Palace prop wall to get dressed for a big interview.

Minds Palace has a great prop wall, where you can collect and use props to dress up your avatar. The prop wall must have seen me coming, because it had just the accessories for an out-of-breath, red-faced roundhead like me.

I pull rubbery legs into my Props satchel.

I dragged and dropped a wonderful set of rubbery arms and legs into my Prop satchel, opened it up, and found them all nicely stashed there. From that point, I could just drag the props onto my avatar's body, and use the Edit window to adjust them and voila: Digi's got legs!

I Plopped my new prop legs onto old round head!

Snatching a crown and a funny thing that looked like a crumhorn (my voice is pretty soft, so I need to get attention somehow), I was off to my date with destiny…famous author interviewed (well, famous in his own computer room, anyway).

Camera! Action! The interview of famous author Digi

Out of breath, there is quite a crowd here, and there is…Coyote, the avatar representing Fabrice of Zenda. I sure liked his avatar; must be someone from the Hopi or Navajo legends. It reminds me fondly of times spent driving through Arizona and New Mexico.

My interview with the famous creator of Zenda starts!

The interview is just starting, when one of our honored members of the studio audience, mr. rotten, starts to heckle from the peanut gallery. As these interviews are posted all over Minds Palace, any kind of rabble can just show up!

mr. rotten is not happy!

mr. rotten is not happy, or rather, very happy to have a stage to do his number. So what can we do? Well, we carry on the interview to see if mr. rotten sees something of interest, or just gets bored and goes away. Let's tune in now to the action (my comments are in italics). What follows is part of the log of my interview.

Bye all my friends! This interview was conducted partly in French.

So, this interview went a whole different place than I thought it would, and we learned something about mr. rotten, life in virtual worlds, and in RL (real life). These interviews are snippets of life, streams of thought and can be quite touching (or stupendously boring!).

Shameless plug for this book, Coyote adds an image prop into The Palace.

Games! Charebus

Zenda studio, working with Minds Palace and the Palace Inc. has produced Charebus, a combination of charades and rebus in which you solve picture puzzles while chatting with other players from around the world. A new twist on charades, pictionary, and rebus puzzles, Charebus is currently played in the Minds Palace at 5 p.m. each Saturday. Groups of five or more can play at the same time. Each Charebus puzzle features a different mystery phrase (movie, song, TV show, etc.). To solve the puzzle, you must guess picture clues related to that mystery phrase.

Find information about Charebus and other games in the Palace at Zenda Studio's home page at http://www.zenda.com/. You can even submit your own puzzle ideas for future episodes of Charebus.

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