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I had an idea several years ago for a web site that acted as an exchange for real and virtual currencies. I was never an avid gamer but, after discovering Second Life and IMVU, I realized how many people were spending (and earning) money in these 3D virtual worlds. While there are some companies (IGE and others) that facilitate buying and selling of virtual goods and currencies, there didn’t seem to be a true virtual/real currency exchange market yet. One that would provide daily exchange rates for directly changing one currency into another, virtual or real, for a small fee. Like most of my ideas, this was added to a very long “projects” list. I had a good idea, I was sure, but neither the time nor resources to develop it.

Fast forward to 2010. IMVU and myYearbook are the first partners of the new Currency Connect, “a service that allows virtual world and social networking site members to exchange virtual currency among partner websites.”1 They don’t (as far as I can tell) offer exchange with real currencies, though. That would certainly involve regulatory compliances which would complicate matters. But how long can these virtual currencies, purchased with real money, be unregulated? Over two years ago, “Linden Lab, the company that runs the popular virtual world Second Life, announced… that all in-world “banks” must now be registered with real-world banking regulators.”2 Dave Rosenberg noted, in his blog on CNet News last December3, that the door is open for much larger players to bring their huge user bases to the game. Certainly PayPal, Facebook, Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft could stake a claim in this, as yet, wide open territory.

Where does that leave me? Crossing yet another promising idea off my list? Probably. I still don’t have the resources needed for development. So I’m throwing this idea out into the blogosphere. Maybe someone with capital or connections can make use of it.

What do you think? Thumbs up or down?

1 http://www.currencyconnect.com/FAQ

2 http://www.freedom-to-tinker.com/blog/felten/second-life-welcomes-bank-regulators

3 http://news.cnet.com/8301-13846_3-10415702-62.html

Image courtesy of Pulsar Media

I haven’t made any scientific comparisons, I only share my experience. I’ve been a devoted Mozilla/Firefox user for many years. My current workhorse is an AMD Phenom Quad core box with 8GB RAM and it flies. :)

I tend to keep 40-60 tabs open, on average. I can run the latest Firefox on this box and it will have severe performance problems (the screen turns grey, desktop unresponsive) even with nothing else running. I have to restart Firefox 3 times daily. It takes a long time to reload, so this is a major inconvenience.

I am now running Chrome with 42 tabs, as well as Thunderbird, Gimp, Pidgin, 5 terminals, and 2 virtual machines (Ubuntu 10.4 using QEMU and OpenSuse 11.2 using Virtualbox 3.1) – all this on a fully pimped-out Compiz 3D desktop on a 24″ display – with outstanding performance from Chrome.

I love the Fox, but until it gets its act together, I’m using Chrome.

Those of you who know me are familiar with my sometimes corny, sometimes edgy, usually dry sense of humor.  I’m certainly not known for political correctness.  But, hey! I’m okay with that.

I was bored the other day (really, I was avoiding the pile of work to be done), and decided to create a fun site for funny photos.  To be accurate, photos with funny captions.  It will provide me with endless hours of amusement, keeping me off the streets and out of trouble.  I hope some of you will become contributors, too.  Right now, you can leave comments and alternate captions.  Email me to register an account.  I’d leave it open but for the damned spammers.  Check out WrongDotCom and let me know what you think.

No, not really. Like many well-intentioned bloggers, I get caught up in the demands of life. I’m not lazy, I work long hours for damn little compensation. I’ve just got too many projects going. I run from one to the next, rarely bringing anything to fruition. That needs to change.

I’m working now on a new way to organize my day. I’ll now be making a little time every day to visit each of my projects, including several blogs. I’ve had to shelve some promising ideas, even scrap some, in order to focus on what I hope will be the most productive. This is second nature for you organizers out there, but a daunting task for me.

Wish me luck. I hope we can all move closer to our dreams this year.

I just received a new follower on twitter this morning. He sent me a direct message thanking me for following him back and offering this tip on a way to gain new followers quickly.  I’ve been using twitter in a haphazard fashion for a little over 2 years.  I’ve seen some pitches like this before.  I’ve never tried them.  I’m not sure what value there is in adding a large number of people that you don’t actually engage in discussion.  For instance, what use would it be for me to add someone who sells health and beauty supplies if I don’t have anything in common with them. But, today, I’m in a mood for adventure.  This is the text suggested by tweetergetter for emailing:

Hey check this out…

I just found this site that shows you a
way of getting 1000’s of new followers
on twitter, I just started using it
myself and its starting to work
already.

http://tweetergetter.com/TheRainKing

Thought it might interest you.

TheRainKing

I’ll refrain from spamming my contacts with this but, if you are interested in trying to increase your twitter audience, perhaps you’ll click through and try it yourself.  Let me know what your results are and I’ll post my progress in a week or so.

Seven years ago today, I left my house in the Bronx to go to my job at a software development company in White Plains, NY. On the way in, I stopped for coffee. Some homeless-looking dude came past me on the street saying, “They flew a plane into the WTC”. I thought he was nuts. When I got to work, it was eerily silent. Everyone was watching cnn.com show the clips of the first and then the second attack.

I didn’t lose family or close friends, but we had customers in the Towers who didn’t make it out. Blessings and peace to those who lost their lives; to those injured physically, mentally and emotionally; to the people who lost their livelihood; and to the family, friends and communities who bear the burden still.

In a rare turnabout, I posted to my LiveJournal yesterday and will cross-post it here. I had a WP plug-in that automated the reverse, but I don’t use it anymore. I had only logged into LJ to wish a friend happy birthday. I found a nice suggestion for a blog post topic awaiting me, which I’ve used as the title of this post. My user name on LJ is meanirishtemper. Don’t ask. You don’t want to know. Without further ado, here is my LJ post from yesterday:

—–

I have used the name Rain King online since 1994. I took it from the Counting Crows song of the same name. It was only later that I learned of the Saul Bellow novel, also excellent. I use that name because I feel it describes me… my life. I’ve been blessed with the melancholy celtic spirit. It’s in my blood, the rain, and it calls to me wherever I may run to escape it, physically or emotionally. One day it will take me home; my elusive, dreamed-of home where I truly belong, where I fit in, no where to be found in this world.

So why am I meanirishtemper? Why else? Every variant of the name I wanted was taken, save bizarre numerically-tainted versions like 6969The_Rain_King_666999 or some such nonsense. And it has been pointed out that my temper could use some hmmmm… tempering? My business is Timbury Computer Services and you will find me online as timbury in many places, like http://www.cre8buzz.com a great social network.

Enough of this. I’mback off to IMVU where I am… TheRainKing, of course. Peace.