Jewelry Expo a low-lag delight

I have been raving about Jewelry Expo since their 2007 event. Often, I’ve done so at other exhibitions. The Shoe Expo and Hair Fair come to mind. There was an article approvingly noting a technique for getting around Hair Fair that involved rezzing a prim, sitting on it, and navigating via the editing tools, as the lag made it difficult to actually walk anywhere. When things get that bad? You’ve got trouble. You also end up with people coming in, starting to look around, then giving up in frustration halfway through.

What makes this particularly mystifying to me is that we know how to run a low-lag event of this kind. It’s been solved. All it takes is strict limits on textures and prims, and strict enforcement of those rules. Granted, said strict enforcement takes a ton of work and enduring a whole lot of grumbling from vendors wanting to push the limits—I don’t envy Miriel her job one bit—but it pays off.

As I write this, there’s one day to go in Jewelry Expo 2008, and it’s been a sheer delight to walk around. There are 78 vendor booths showing a wide variety of products, and lag is about as minimal is it gets. Most of the booths are arrayed around the perimeter in alphabetical order, so the textures for upcoming booths load as you look at any given one, but without loading lots of extraneous stuff in the background.

Granted, I have not seen a single treasure hunt box. I must not have been looking in the right places… I have, however, picked up a ton of freebies. And also a couple of necklaces that I couldn’t resist. And, okay, I may have won an auction benefitting Heifer International as well.

The prim and texture limits don’t mean the booths had to be homogenous or boring. Quite the contrary. I particularly like Eolande’s bathroom setup, which uses a few carefully chosen textures to provide the illusion of perspective.

I’d also like to give a shoutout to Sian Birke, who happened to be onhand the first time I stopped by her booth. She was friendly without being overbearing.

And I like Miriel’s own scripted vendors, which allow one to choose the metal, jewels, and permissions for any given item.

The single largest OMG moment, however, was provided by Little Boy Blue’s mermaid skeleton necklace. It’s not something I’d wear myself, but I admire the twisted genius it took to conceive of and create it.

If you haven’t yet been there, and it’s still Saturday, October 11, what are you waiting for? Go now! And if you’re going to either run or participate in any other product fair in the year to come, you really ought to consider insisting upon the rules and setup found here. They work.

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