Tim is the IT Director of Advanced Initiatives for Wharton Research Data Services at the University of Pennsylvania, which has over 450 subscribers including some fly-by-night schools you may have never heard of, like Harvard University, Stanford University, and the University of Chicago. Previously, Tim was IT Director for Crompco, LLC in Plymouth Meeting, PA. Crompco is known for being the most technically innovative company in the environmental testing field, having been featured in the press for their corporate training in Second Life and field solutions several times.
A lot of the content on the site is about Python and Django. Python is a programming language that Tim absolutely loves, and Django is a community, ecosystem, and web framework written in Python. You may never have heard of Django, but you've probably used a website powered by it. Django helps run Instagram, Pinterest, Disqus, Mozilla, and The Washington Post, among many others.
Tim is a member of both the Python Software Foundation and Django Software Foundation. He is also an organizer of DjangoCon US, most recently serving as one of the Program Chairs. Tim put in a bid and was host liaison for DjangoCon US 2016, when it came to The Wharton School in Philadelphia.
A long time ago in a far off universe called Second Life a group of residents came together on a strange journey to San Francisco and thus the Second Life Community Convention was born. Ever wonder how it all happened and just who has been involved with the convention from organizers to speakers to sponsors and volunteers? We hope to paint an accurate portrait of what the SLCC is, how it began, and what is in store for the future.
The concept of a Second Life event in the real world was born during a trip to San Francisco in late July 2005 by FlipperPA Peregrine, Jennyfur Peregrine, Valadeza Anubis, Hiro Pendragon, and a few others who joined us for what was coined the “Real Life Invasion of Linden Lab” by FlipperPA Peregrine in a witty forum thread. During the trip the idea came up to get people together for drinks during the State of Play III conference. The idea of having a more serious event than just a meet and greet came into fruition after we met up with Jerry Paffendorf, who was running the first SL Future Salons in the Peregrine’s simulator, Indigo, at the time.
The five resident founders and lead organizers for the event were: SNOOPYbrown Zamboni / Jerry Paffendorf; FlipperPA Peregrine / Timothy Allen; Jennyfur Peregrine / Jennifer Vatza; Valadeza Anubis / Laura van Hook and Hiro Pendragon / Ron Blechner. Jeska Linden soon joined us as our Linden Liaison and should be credited as the person who pays attention to ALL the details; she’s amazing.
During August there were a flurry of forum posts to the SL forums garnering interest in holding such an event, community planning meetings, organizers meetings and a veritable tsunami of e-mails. The process was hectic at times, considering that we started the planning in August and the event was to be held in the beginning of October.
At some point in time, the group realized that we needed to call this event something. Some of the earlier renditions included Second Life User Con (SLUC) and Second Life Resident Con. There was much discussion between using convention and conference as well. We eventually decided to stick with the Second Life Community Convention mainly because the theme of the first SLCC was “community.” The domains were registered as SLConvention.com and SLConvention.org prior to the final name being selected.
Since its inception, The SLCC has been a volunteer run organization. The organizers and volunteers have donated their time, expertise, skills and love of Second Life towards making a gathering of this size possible. The SLCC has been about bringing people together in the real world and celebrating the revolutionary 3D platform of Second Life. The SLCC first and foremost is about bringing the many representatives of the Second Life community together to network, build friendships and to discuss Second Life in a common forum.
2005: NEW YORK
The 1st Annual Second Life Community Convention took place on October 8th and 9th in 2005, happening in tandem with the State of Play III conference at the New York Law School in New York City. Over 150 residents, Linden Lab employees and other industry professionals attended the conference, packing the room. Linden Lab CEO Philip Rosedale gave the keynote address dressed as his Second Life avatar.
2006: SAN FRANCISCO
The following year, the SLCC moved to the Fort Mason Center in San Francisco, home of Linden Lab: the creators of Second Life. The event was held on August 18th, 19th and 20th in 2006, and sold out with 500 residents, Linden Lab employees and other industry professionals. Our keynote presenters were Founder of Lotus Development Corporation and Chairman of the Board of Linden Research, Mitch Kapor, CEO of Linden Lab Philip Rosedale and CTO of Linden Lab Cory Ondrejka.
The team changed a bit for the 2nd Annual SLCC. Jeska Linden, Jennyfur and FlipperPA lead the organization team, along with Misty Rhodes, Nexeus Fatale, Nethermind Bliss, Fizik Baskerville, SnoopyBrown Zamboni, Valadeza Anubis, an army volunteers, and Bub Linden as the team mascot.
This year, the 3rd Annual SLCC will be located in Chicago at the Hilton hotel. The convention has grown in size expecting upwards of 1000 attendees. This year the SLCC will be using a multi-track format to maximize on content and interaction. The four tracks are Education, Machinima, Business/Future of the Metaverse and Social/Entertainment. There will, of course, be overlapping topics from track to track, and a large, central ballroom for people who just want to mingle, meet friends, and perhaps catch SL musicians strumming away on their acoustics.
Tim (aka FlipperPA) retired after chairing the 2006 and 2007 efforts, though the convention continued on for several more years. Second Life continues to exist today, though Tim's interests have moved towards big data and the web.