CyberWoLfman's ActiveWorlds Experience!
A better AWGate
Updates (if any are needed) appear after each item following the change to the new AWGate on November 22nd, 2001. It is now similar to a 'tourist playpen'. You can't use local teleports or use the Shift key to go through things, so you're stuck in the area near the GZ. The reason I think of it as a playpen for tourists is because they can't use shift to go underground and fall until they hit bottom or leave the GZ area, and get lost.
These are just a few of my ideas on how AWGate should be improved:
#1: Get rid of the big ball above everyone's heads! It makes many people feel claustraphobic and like there's something big and heavy over them. This isn't a good thing to have in a place where you're trying to get people to relax. They're already stressed enough being thrown into a new program, with the whole 3D thing with pictures, a worlds list, trying to figure out how to move, talk, and fly, avatars wandering around in front of them, and all that is confusing enough, don't you think? Also, the spinning of that big ball makes a few get motion sickness.
Update: They got rid of the clear spinning ball but replaced it with the Earth. Someone should ask Atlas if that's supposed to make someone feel less stressed to have the weight of the world over them as opposed to a clear ball...
#2: Maybe make the place look like an arena. Big steps, and with several large columns to perch on. We need better perches than those billboards in AWGate. About the only thing that they're good for is balance beam practice.
#3: Speaking of the billboards, they should be put back a bit, like at the top of the big arena steps so they're not smack in front of everyone's faces. Since this is also the place where people come for the first time, it seems like it's a waste of advertising to put up signs advertising 'Community Booths' and maps of AlphaWorld (which if they're a new user that just got the program, they haven't even been to, yet!). And just a word about the TrueSpace ad. They just got here, why would they be interested in making custom made objects and avatars that they'd only be able to use in their own world? They're tourists, not citizens, so they don't even own a world, yet. Duh! Okay, maybe AWSchool is kind of okay to have as it makes the new people realize that people can build in some worlds, but it should be more emphasized in AlphaWorld's GZ, or some of the other public building worlds, not in AWGate. Tuturials for the new users should be first priority to teach them how to use the program, not all this other stuff. Let them get used to it first, then start feeding them ads, if you have to. Heck, put a link to my main ActiveWorlds page in AWGate if you want! Probably be more useful to new users than ads for programs that they have no use for, yet...
Update: The ads are smaller, and seem more colorful than before.
#4: What's up with the rotating balls? They aren't necessary to impress visitors. If you want to make AWGate more fascinating, try using more colorful pictures, or new avatars and objects, but not something so startling that it seems like a slap in the face. Let it tantilize someone's optic nerves with a little eye candy, not shock them into catatonic withdrawl with a barrage of colors. Maybe increase the draw to click on something by using a witty line that appears when someone puts their pointer over the sign and tempt their curiosity? And why is there a third rotating ball about 80 meters below ground? Has there been a lot of people going underground looking for stuff, and the owners wanted to try to impress them with a third rotating ball down there? LOL
Update: The rotating balls are gone.
#5: If you absolutely have to get flashy, how about setting something up in the business and / or entertainment teleports section(s)? That will act as a draw to people to go into it and check stuff out. You can also have the international and / or the main worlds teleport section(s) look like an 'old world' type of square or town hall. Old dignified buiding facades, tastefully decorated with a few well placed signs (small ones, please!) or pennants to give it a festive appearance without making it look like a carnival.
Update: They have things like mechanical eyeballs in the teleport sections now.
#6: Some newer avatars would be nice. Exactly how old are some of those avatars in AWGate? Also, there's far too few of them. There needs to be at least one more column of avs, if not two. And yes, I know, the avatars.dat file is a pain to edit, but think of the smiles that the work will generate. :-) Heck, even changing the yellow avatar to a blue one would be nice. I keep wanting to pop into the T-rex av and start chowing down on tourists because they look like some kind of Easter candy. Maybe they have creamy centers? ;-) One more little teeny tiny thing in regards to the avatars. Since not everyone on this mudball is white, maybe there should be some other skin colors besides white? Maybe male and female asians, hispanics, and Africans for starters. Beats the monochrome outlook we have now. And before you ask, I'm 'white' or caucasian. Just trying to make others feel welcome, too. :-)
Update: They got new avatars. Different skin colors, too. Just not many avatars to choose from even for citizens. Noticed also that they got rid of the T-rex av. Maybe I made someone nervous by saying I was tempted to change into it and chow down on tourists? Hee hee hee
And no, I'm not being too picky. If I was, I'd be including a lot more stuff in here. Care for an example? How about those billboards that seem to be abandoned at 13s 25w? But of course, now that I brought them to someone's attention, they'll probably vanish. Good thing I took a picture of them, eh? Heh, heh.
Update: Not sure if those billboards are there are not now because we can't use Shift to walk through things and leave the 'tourist playpen'.
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