2008.11.04 01:00 - Easy and Natural

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    This was the fourth guardian session, in our new system in which we earmark 4 of the 28 weekly PaB sessions. During this new experiment, we encourage guardians to be present in larger numbers at 7 pm SLT on Saturdays, at 1 pm SLT on Sundays, at 7 am SLT on Mondays, and at 1 am SLT on Tuesdays.

    I, Pema, was the guardian on call for this night session, starting at 1 am SLT.

    Corvuscorva Nightfire: Good morning, Pema
    Pema Pera: Hi Corvi!
    Pema Pera: Great seeing you in the new place here
    Corvuscorva Nightfire smiles.
    Pema Pera: Quiet, this time of the day, but fitting perhaps, with all this open space!
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: true.
    Pema Pera: I wonder whether/how the change of location will affect our conversations . . . .
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: I'm sure it must..but it didn't seem to last night.
    Pema Pera: I hope you did get enough sleep (or no sleep yet?) since then :-)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: I just woke up and I'll go back to sleep soon.
    Pema Pera: ah, like me! I'm planning to do the same
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: :)
    Pema Pera: Have you been playing with the notion of apperance yet, by any chance?
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: That's the easiest notion for me to play with! It feels natural.
    Pema Pera: glad to hear that! Can you say a bit more, and perhaps give an example?
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: ark!
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: mmm
    Pema Pera: or a sketch of what appearance means or feels like for you?
    Pema Pera: (nothing especially deep, just the basic sense)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: having a hard time coming up with words for that.
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: I guess...I have a great imagination....and here, sl seems very real to me.
    Pema Pera: The simplest and most natural things are often the hardest to put into words, I know
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: when I am not in sl....not sitting here .....
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: I sometimes have the same sense of "reality"
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: that this is something I choose to imagaine.
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: but it has it's own...
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: shape, too.
    Pema Pera: ah, so in RL you sometimes feel as if the whole world appears to you like the kind of presentation that SL gives us?
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: in the sense that there are "real" things...that I choose to "write stories" about.....but that the real things aren't particularly significant except in the way I, and others write stories in our mind about them. They are..but they aren't what they seem to be.
    Pema Pera: oh, that's a fascinating way to look at how things appear to us, Corvi!

    At this point, Claire joined us.

    Corvuscorva Nightfire: Hi, Claire!!!!
    Pema Pera: Hi Claire!
    Claire Beltran: Hi!
    Claire Beltran: Hello Corvu, Pema!
    Claire Beltran: So is this where we are meeting from now on?
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: yep!
    Pema Pera: indeed!
    Pema Pera: Quite different from the previous place, don't you think?
    Claire Beltran: Yes, very lovely!
    Pema Pera: Corvi and I were just talking about the notion of appearance -- both in SL and RL -- and Corvi said it was a notion that was easy and natural for her
    Pema Pera: and how things aren't what they seem to be -- can you say more about that, Corvi?
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: hmm...in the sense that the pillar behind you, and you are pixels here.
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: and you and your seat are space and energy and pattern and lots of things we don't get yet...there
    Claire Beltran: Don't get how?
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: but I have a sense of Pema, and a sense of Piet.
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: I was thinking about science...
    Pema Pera: yes, our experience of them is something that could be said to be layered on top of (or induced by) the pixels on the screen -- and yes, something similar happens in RL too
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: figuring out what matter IS on the deepest levels.
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: you...are whatevery YOU are....
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: but my sense of Pema and Piet....is from me and induced by YOU.
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: I have my own stories about Claire and Piet.
    Claire Beltran: Really? I hope they're happy stories ^-^
    Corvuscorva Nightfire smiles at Claire...

    Corvi had brought up a number of interesting points, some of which we picked up below, while others had to be left for later. Yes, in RL too, physics tells us that things are not what they seem to be, and the way we experience the world is the result of a complex and intimate interplay between what our surroundings present to us and how we interpret all that.

    Claire Beltran: Oh! Speaking of this sense of reality... I leanred something interesting today.
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: what was that?
    Pema Pera: yes, it is fascinating to let the different levels speak to us, as directly as we can let them speak, independent of their layering
    Pema Pera: what was what?
    Pema Pera: something interesting, Claire?
    Claire Beltran: Piet.. I mean, Pema.. you might know. Have you ever heard of a program called Vocaloid?
    Pema Pera: no, what is that?
    Claire Beltran: Vocaloid is software that is used for composition and songwriting. But - here's the catch - the actual vocals of the song are performed by the program, specifically single-syllable voice clips recorded from an actual person and then spliced together onto a 'character' within the program.
    Claire Beltran: Here is a YouTube video of one of the songs composed using the Vocaloid system, featuring the first vocaloid character, Hatsune Miku.
    Claire Beltran: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3rsBLRFONEs&feature=related
    Pema Pera: wow, I hope that sounds better than announcements in a train or on an automatic answering service!
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: it kinda does!
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: hmmm
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: it even has....a little emotion!
    Claire Beltran: It's interesting... I don't know how it fits into our discussion, but I was thinking of it... because it seems to make the software more personable.
    Corvuscorva Nightfire nods.
    Claire Beltran: Miku is now an iconic character in and out of Japan.
    Pema Pera: it sure is cute :-)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: ^,^
    Pema Pera: and the Japanese is kind-a "natural" within the genre of a rather simple kind of song -- better than I would have guessed!
    Pema Pera: I wonder what would happen if we would use that program for a PaB session . . . ..
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: you mean the type becomes the sound....
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: if each of us could choose the "voice" from lots of choices...
    Pema Pera: yes, when you specify he melody first, I guess
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: it would be just like choosing the rest of the Avie.
    Claire Beltran: The type doesn't become the sound... the words and melody do.
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: and...would one need melody?
    Pema Pera: yes, voice and melody and text, are those the three ingredients, Claire?
    Claire Beltran: Yep ^-^
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: put if one let go of melody...could be very cool in sl....

    After all three of us had enjoyed listening to the synthetic song, Claire treated us to another one, quite different, an aria.

    Claire Beltran: There's another very cute one of Miku singing Der Holle Rache... she sounds like a violin, but it's... Heehee!
    Claire Beltran: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=itemAaKtKwc
    Claire Beltran: The aria itself, interestingly, is meant to be sung in a rather light tone... I think the adaptation highlights the difficulties the program experiences if exposed to non-Japanese pronounciation, But I think that could be worked on with time.
    Pema Pera: yes, I was just thinking :-), that Japanese girl is speaking German quite well !
    Claire Beltran: Hee! Some of the German commenters stated that they could understand her, but others didn't.
    Pema Pera: I can understand together with the text -- but without that it would have been difficult
    Pema Pera: (but of course that is often true for real arias too!)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire nods.!
    Claire Beltran: I hope I haven't taken things too far off track.. I just found that very remarkable, and it probably means a lot for the future of voice technology... possibly even for the development of AIs.
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: not at all! I love it!
    Pema Pera: me too, very interesting!
    Pema Pera: A new experience
    Pema Pera: Corvi and I were talking about appearance, and I asked for an example . . . well, you've given us a few!
    Corvuscorva Nightfire nods.
    Claire Beltran: You mean, voice technology that is generated not by the user's actual voice, but by the technology itself?
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: right.
    Pema Pera: anything can be viewed/experience/taken-as appearance, and this is an interesting new way to show how that appearance does not have to be related to something underneath that it is layered on or based upon
    Pema Pera: In this case, we automatically assume that the appearance of a signing voice is based upon the presence (now or at the time of recording) of a person singing
    Pema Pera: but as you showed us clearly that does not have to be the case!
    Pema Pera: Thank you for a perfect example!
    Pema Pera: It can help us to separate the layer of appearance from the layer of what we impute to be underneath -- normally we conflate the two, without even realizing we do so
    Wol Euler: morning everyone
    Pema Pera: but when we then separate the two again, and only hold the appearance in the palm of our hand, so to speak, we can appreciate the appearance in different, often deeper, ways

    Wol then joined us, but I had to leave.

    Pema Pera: Hi Wol!
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: Morning, Wol!
    Pema Pera: Hello and goodbye . . . .
    Claire Beltran: Hello, Wol! ^-^/
    Pema Pera: I am just about to go back to bed . . . .
    Wol Euler nods and smiles. my fault for being late.
    Pema Pera: 5 am here, after an hour of PaB -- oh no, not to worry :-)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire: Night, Pema!
    Claire Beltran: Oh, well sleep well, Pema.
    Pema Pera: Perhaps Claire can play a song for you!
    Wol Euler: ah!
    Pema Pera: Corvi and I enjoyed talking about appearance
    Pema Pera: and then Claire producing appearance
    Pema Pera: :-)
    Corvuscorva Nightfire smiles.
    Wol Euler: goodn ight, sleep well.
    Pema Pera: night/day all, as the case may be!
    Pema Pera: thanks for joining me here in this new open space :-)
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