A few hours ago, I got an invite to zip out to see Colgate-Palmolive's Second Life promotion, which opens today. Colgate's Smile Power Team will be handing out free virtual goody bags, we are told. There are also four vending machines at the site that are supposed to give out the same freebies.
So, why aren't I smiling?
The site, at This Second has a number of distinctive flaws. The first flaw is the floor. The pieces of it just aren't fit together very well. There's gaps and nothing really lines up. Sign textures haven't really been paid proper attention to, and from the sides, they look shoddy.
As for the overall facilities, the site has not just one but nine one metre spinning cubes (non phantom, so they act as obstructions). Above each is the text:
"Click Smile Vending Machines for FREE Colgate Smile & Freebies!p!!"
(That's exactly as it appears)
Why nine of them?
Aside from the 9 spinning cubes and six wall posters of smiling avatars, there are four defective vending machines. They give out two notecards (one of which you'll find useful), but none of the other freebies that they contain or promise. Essentially, it's a one dollar scripting job gone awry.
That's about it.
On the other hand, one of the two notecards does give you a list of ten Second Life places that probably will make you smile. They're pretty good. This one, I'm thinking, is not. The island is running at or over capacity with aggregate frame times at 22.3ms or higher. Thank heavens the agent limit is set to 80, because it's maxed out by 30 or so campers pretty much all the time.
All that said, the site would take about five minutes flat to fix. By the time you read this, perhaps it may have been. I'm not sure any of that will give it any genuine appeal (Colgate appeal or otherwise).