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CHUI Beta Viewer released

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With ever new change there always will be a lot of complaining. And it  will NEVER occur that EVERYONE is satisfied. That will only happen if LL will create 73.000 different types of viewers. (And even then there will be complaining going on!).

I'll just go with the flow and make the best out of it. So far, in all this years things improved, for me at least.

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Re BUG-1820, I just created CHUIBUG-99 in hopes that calling it a "Feature Request" in the title might get some designer to look at this more carefully.

(I'm also hoping that maybe CHUIBUGs are more open to view than regular BUGs.)

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Ummm.. what if you just want a chat bar to type in for local chat?  I don't  see it beneficial at all to have all that real estate taken up on your screen when all you want to do is chat in local?  Am I missing something?

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The new communication interface is pointless, useless, un-intuitive, and violates every common sense rule that should be used when dealing with a multi-tasking client.

 

I am no longer able to pay, or teleport someone in the chat interface.  To teleport them I have to go to the friend's list and profile, and then teleport them from there.  This is a lot of clicking when it used to simply be in their IM which made sense.

 

the Chat groupings are vertical on the left side, and all languages used in second life are horizontal.  This means if you expand the tabs far enough to see names you've lost most of your screen and have no idea what is going on if you want to keep up with chat.  If you intend for communicate to be left closed then why has the chat bar (simple text input without a full window) been removed?  There is no longer even a notification when closed to tell you which chat or person sent you a new IM.  These changes have destroyed the usefulness of the interface for productive users.

The positive statements made about this new interface seem to be made by someone who never uses second life, and does not multi task or chat in second life other than in the most minimal ways.  Regardless of who thought this was a good idea because of the the way the new features have been integrated, the entire communications hub needs to be scrapped and abandoned.  It causes too many clicks and too much time to communicate.  It's only an improvement for people who sit doing nothing all day and ignoring the virtual world to read chat.

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Leah Shim wrote:

Ummm.. what if you just want a chat bar to type in for local chat?  I don't  see it beneficial at all to have all that real estate taken up on your screen when all you want to do is chat in local?  Am I missing something?

I have that same exact question.

That is a big and huge shortcoming if it's been deleted.

I would predict that this would be one of the top complaints after CHUI goes live if the chat bar has been completely removed.

I may need to download this again so I can speak knowledgeably.  I dont know what percentage of Residents use Voice Chat, but Torley's Video appeared focused on that.  I for one rarely use Voice.

Really, what I'm seeing in the video again shows a basic disconnect beteween how Residents live in SL and what LL thinks. 

Seriously...all we ever asked for was GET GROUP CHAT FIXED!

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I downloaded and took a quick peak.

Have the Dev's forgot the simplicity of tabbed browsing?

Instead of simple tabs in one window, I now have to open a separate window for any actions?

And removing the chat bar for local chat is extra large fail. (unless there was a way to bring it up I couldn't find).

I hope I get proved wrong but I am predicting a lot of gnashing of teeth when this goes live.

 

 

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You can teleport or pay people in the chat interface: Right-click their name either in chat or in the list on the left (group or local). Same as before. Not even going to the other comments... please, use it before making untenable claims. I agree it's too big, but it's also the first iteration of the UI. Remember the first v2? It was almost as atrocious as v1-viewers. They addressed many of the complaints since.

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It's not new, it's an old idea (chat console) with some new tweaks. I tried it while it was in the earlier stages of development. When it hit the Development Viewer build I watched the Torley video. I used it for 3 days. It's bad. VERY bad. It's large. VERY large. It's worst in busy social situations. And forget about new residents figuring it out because it's not even remotely intuitive. And cramming all the communications into one console will make wrong window posts way more likely ... albeit hilarious! Like I said earlier ... it makes one wonder what other regressions LL has in mind. It's been ages since we've had our hair and shoes jammed up our arses every time we TP, why not bring THAT back, too?

 

We'll all eventually learn to deal with it or opt for a TPV doesn't use it. But it makes one wonder about the decision making process at LL and who has their ear for development ideas.

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Jenni Darkwatch wrote:

You can teleport or pay people in the chat interface: Right-click their name either in chat or in the list on the left (group or local). Same as before. 

Is it the same? Right-clicking in the left window is useful, but doing so in the chat history gives a very short list of options (just "Show Resident Profile", "Copy Name to clipboard", and "Copy SLurl to clipboard").

Before we could left-click on a name in the chat history, and we'd get a pop-up window as we do in the Beta (with"View full profile" as the sole option), but before it also had a little "gear" pulldown that allowed all the options we get now by right-clicking their name in the left pane. The problem with this change is that the left-hand pane for nearby chat is only populated with the people who are currently nearby... so if somebody leaves and you want to IM them, you have to go through their full profile to do it.

Now that's not a deal-breaker or anything, but I wish I understood why they went to the trouble of removing that functionality from the chat history. There may be a good reason, but I think they'd get better reception if they exposed more of the design rationale for such decisions.

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It would be nice if there were more options on how the menus are arranged.

I have a hud at the top left of my screen, I want to minimise the conversation window down to just the icons of the residents or groups, so it acts more akin to the current system. Then when I see there's new chat, I click on the icon, the chat window opens.

However if I drag my chat window to the top right, where there's space, the conversations are off screen, I would have to leave the collapsed conversation window closer to the middle, where it's more in the way, it would be better if I could move the group names/icons to the right or left of the conversation window depending upon my choice.

On a similar theme it would be good if I could leave the menu that allows me to add new conversations open, whilst collapsing the rest of the conversations window.

Nearby chat, as this is a constant it would be nice if I could elect to remove this from the conversations window altogether and move it to the toolbar.

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Some really minor comments on aesthetics:

In general, there seems to be a lot of padding around all the separate pieces of the UI... especially vertically. There's a big gap between the buttons at the top of the windows and the scrolling chat history, then another big gap between that and the type-in text area, then another below that. (Interestingly, that last one isn't so oversized on the torn-off windows, and I'm not sure why the difference. And I don't really see the need for much of any vertical padding anywhere.

That top padding between the buttons and the chat history is particularly ugly because it misaligns the top of the chat history with the top of the tile-and-tab-titles on the left. I can make up a story about whence that extra padding may have arisen: it may have once been space for an old-school, MILSPEC-style outline surrounding the chat window and linking to the active tab title... but some of the control buttons are also associated only with the individual chat, not the window as a whole, so they'd rightly belong inside that surround, too, and more to that point:

There's something a bit unintuitive about the buttons at the upper right, with the tear-off (northeast arrow) and close chat ("x") buttons -- both of which affect the individual chat -- straddling the collapse-pane button (<<") which affects the window as a whole. (There's also a vestigial, greyed-out pane-expansion button (">>") on torn-off windows. Yeah, it's greyed-out, but could it ever have any function on those windows? It seems visual noise to me.)

So anyway, here's a screenshot of the hub window as-is:

as-is CHUI.png

and an illustration of an alternative:

qies CHUI.png

(Yes, the buttons have no bottom border with nor separation from the chat on which they operate, and yes, the pane collapse / expand controls have no outline at all, similar to the window topbar controls -- because they operate on the window itself.)

Also, I don't think it's a big deal, but the "Start a new conversation" button ("+") doesn't afford adding a group chat, which must be done from the People window (as far as I can tell). I don't know that there yet exists a "Choose Resident or Group dialog to use here, whether it would be useful anywhere else, or if it would be worth having just for this. It probably wouldn't be used all that often here.

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You can separate the local chat from the CHUI console and set it where a chat bar would normally be, but you can't make it a single line chat entry window (it's locked in multiple line mode) and it still has a little icon the the CHUI that lights up and flashes with each thing said in local chat. And every time you log in you have to reset it because it doesn't save the settings or position you set.

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Jenni Darkwatch:

 

It doesn't work well for multi tasking the way most of us use SL.  It would be appropriate for use for someone who chats all day ignoring the virtual world and not needing to do anything.  I have steadily encouraged people to use V3 while everyone wanted to use alternate Viewers.  This is the first time the  V3 team has done anything to completely undermine it's users and popularity by creating something unusable.Right clicking on names?  If I have the hub open, and the names collapsed so I can see half of the screen behind this big clunky communications hub there are no names.  This interface forces people to choose between second life, and chat much like a android viewer for SL, NOT like an SL client most people want to do both at once.

It's pointless to defend an attempt that was badly thought through.  Improvements would be welcome, but they need to stop ignoring problems and fixing or taking away what people do like.  The lack of a chat bar, horizontal tabs, interactions for individual user chats...These are all features that are constantly used for people who multi task in second life.  what are we supposed to do all move over to an alternate viewer like firestorm because the LL viewer team just doesn't understand how most use the client?

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Putting my money where my mouth is I have added my thoughts as follow to this CHUI JIRA,  CHUI Observations (pops).

There are a number of specific JIRA's but rather than trying to decipher what each one was, it was for me simpler to jsut add my thoughts to this one.

 

"Because my comments may fall more under the category of general observations I am adding them here.

Having given CHUI a test drive my first overall thought is this: Features are nice, but features should never overshadow the World. After all, the reason we are here is the World.

That said I feel above all we should have the option between tabs for friends and groups in the ONE window rather than having to open a separate window every time we want to see the list. One of the biggest reasons why the Firefox Browser gained popularity so fast was TABBED BROWSING. Every browser since then has had to incorporate that feature, even Internet Explorer. Simply put it made browsing through and keeping track of multiple web pages fast, easy and simple. Having to cover up more of the World when I want to contact a friend or group is counter-intuitive to why we are here. Honestly, when you browse the Internet, do you open a separate window for each page or do you use tabs?

Bring back the Chat Bar for Local Chat. Again, it should be an option which we use. I could be wrong but my prediction is that this will be the number one complaint you are going to hear when this all goes live.

Give us the ability to remove the mini icons in a chat window. They take up too much real estate and quite frankly are too small to be of great value. Viewer 1 style chat.

I am in accord with all of Hitomi's comments so I'm not going to rewrite them."

Thanks

Perrie Juran

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This is actually quite nice. I relaly like how its layed out and would like to see it released very soon. Very organized and user friendly, makes things a lot easier with everything in one box, yeah, it may block the view but you can easily resize it. You can also change transparencies in the colors box, inactive and active windows so thats an easy fix as well. 

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JoeC Mixmaster wrote:

This is actually quite nice. I relaly like how its layed out and would like to see it released very soon. Very organized and user friendly, makes things a lot easier with everything in one box, yeah, it may block the view but you can easily resize it.

I don't find it nice at all.  Not user friendly - everything in single window is not so good.  (Remember the hated sidebar?)  This sure is effective in hogging screen space!

Chui.jpg

 

Ermm.gif   :smileymad:

 

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You can reduce the amount of wasted space by choosing "Compact View" from the pulldown list thingy. Also, I almost always collapse ("<<" button) the tab-tile-and-title pane on the left. I might expand it momentarily to add a new IM session ("+"), but mostly I leave it closed. YMMV, but for me, that at least helps some.

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You can also make the list of names narrower by sliding the divider between the text field and the names until the double-arrow button is next to the the microphone button, which means the buttons will be no wider than the function buttons under the icon on the Viewer 3 release IM box. You can also resize the width of the windows. Finally, unlike the standard viewer, the "minimize" button on the CHUI communications window is actually NOT as useless as teats on a boar hog. The comm stack I use (local chat window plus tabbed IM's) is actually smaller under CHUI than it is using the current Viewer 3.

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Hearing from more users that this thing is crap.  I would've heard earlier, but you see, they changed a one button interface into a half a dozen steps.  After typing in the wrong window, and missing a half hour of conversation, they figured out how to state this thing is annoying and a turn off.

 

It seems my two choices of options are, to be like the other drama-kings and sell my land and leave SL as I kept seeing threatened in viewer 2.  I think the ones who did those threats are the ones who like this thing.

Or Shall I join the ranks of folks who keep telling me how much they love their buggy TPV's while complaining about all the things wrong with it?  I may just do that.

Which ones have Mesh that works and doesn't have this thing?

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I normally don't post much on these forums, but after trying out the beta CHUI viewer for a few days I thought it would be worth it to share a few of my observations in using the viewer. 

Although I appreciate the "idea" of what LL is attemtping with the communications system in this viewer very much, it's implimentation feels a bit...frustrating. Some people are going to really enjoy the new changes, but I fear an equal amount of people will bemoan the same changes. I forsee these changes to be quite polarizing, in the same vein as the first "communicate" window when voice came out, or the Dazzle UI, or viewer 2, or the sidebar, etc., etc.

Every viewer I've used over 6 years has had horizontal tabs for IM/Group chat sessions. I'm not saying that's the "best" method for sorting through different IM's, but it's a very simple and clutter-fee method, and is an immediately intuitive paradigm (something I think important for newbies to SL). Obviously some people prefer a vertical tabbing scheme, which as an option is a wonderful idea. To force that scheme though, without retaining the option of horizontal tabs, is a bad idea. Personally I saw no benefit to the vertical method in the CHUI beta: it seemed a bit busy , unintuitive, and a bit of a space waster. 

It took me a while to figure out that Nearby/Local chat could be separated from the Communications window....but, ugh, it now looks like an IM window.

For those that prefer to have nearby chat history connected to their chat input, that's a great thing. For me, personally, I much prefer a simple, unobtrusive chat input bar. When I'm at a club or event or shopping, I much prefer to see my chat, and others, appear in-world, slowly fading away mixed together, rather than into an opaque window. It just "feels" more social (to me); more of a "shared" experience, perhaps. That may seem trivial, but for those who like to feel immersed in-world, I think it's psychologically important. Having the option to collapse the nearby chat window into the old chat input bar I think would be a win-win for everyone.

Related to that, it appears that even when the Nearby chat window is detached, it's still somehow connected to the communcations window? (Unless I'm missing something, somehow.) By that I mean, if I close my window with IM's or Group chat, it then closes the Nearby chat window too. I am hoping that's a bug, because otherwise it seems to be somewhat bizarre. If I'm at an event, for example, and want to just focus on my immediate surroundings, I tend to close out IM/Group window and just chat with the other people at the event. I'd rather not have this large, extra window taking up screen space to be honest. I read somewhere that it can be minimized, but that's neither intuitive or elegant, and just adds to one more cluttering UI element on my screen. 

Finally, it seems that every type of communication one receives makes the Chat toolbar button flash orange, which I found confusing. For example, if I take a teleporter which tells me I've arrived at a new destination, the button flashes, or same as with my HUD that uses LLOwnerSay, or a scripted object which gives me some type of feedback, or if so-and-so is in chat range. All that as a default set-up seems quite excessive to me, and what's worse is that the constant orange button flash tells me nothing really useful, such as whether it's an object or person or group conference that's trying to communicate with me. One of the few things Viewer 1 I think got right is that it differentiated quite well the different types of communication one receives: if it's an IM or Group chat, a little button pops up; if it's a system message it shows up in a colored text, or if it's a scripted object a different color of text. Better yet, one could customize the colors of each message. It was a simple, elegant solution.

I often hesitate in posting critical feedback such as this for fear of seeming like "yet another negative resident," which isn't my intent. I also realize that since this viewer has made it to Beta, not much will change before it's final release, which I think will be unfortunate. It's still my hope though that LL really takes its time to get this right  before changing the ways we communicate in SL.

 

 

 

 

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Some of the features added are nice, but the way it is presented is horrible. It is way too big and clunky. Please, please,please bring back the docked open chat and strop screwing around with it? 

It is one thing to have TPV's complaing about the LL viewer, that is what they do, but now you are agrivating the people who are more than willing and happy to use the LL vieiwer. why? And forget new users. They will not want to spend the time involved in figuring the chat interface out, you will probably end up witha large amount of complaints that stem from people simply not understanding how to navigate their way around it.

 

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For those that prefer to have nearby chat history connected to their chat input, that's a great thing. For me, personally, I much prefer a simple, unobtrusive chat input bar. When I'm at a club or event or shopping, I much prefer to see my chat, and others, appear in-world, slowly fading away mixed together, rather than into an opaque window. It just "feels" more social (to me); more of a "shared" experience, perhaps. That may seem trivial, but for those who like to feel immersed in-world, I think it's psychologically important. Having the option to collapse the nearby chat window into the old chat input bar I think would be a win-win for everyone. 

I suspect this change from the one-line docked chatbar may be the one that causes the most trouble for users.

There may be another reason, too, for bringing back something like this, integrated with the CHUI approach: As it stands now, one can vertically shrink the CHUI hub window to just the chatbar. (Well, it also has all the big buttons and a copious expanse of vertical padding, but the chatbar is the only content showing, not the chat history.) Now, that's actually a problem because in that mode, there's no indication at all that somebody has said something in local chat, not even an orange flash from the tab tile -- which is consistent, in that nearby chat already has focus, but it's a sure way to inadvertantly ignore folks nearby.

Now, if one minimizes the CHUI hub ("Conversations") window, one gets the "toasts" that fade into the world; if there were a way to shrink the hub window down to single line chatbar and get those toasts, it would be about 90% of what I think folks most want from a chatbar.

The other 10%? Two things, I think:

First, some would want it to automatically dock to the bottom of the screen. Personally, I prefer being able to move it wherever I want, but if everybody else insists it must be stuck to the bottom of the screen with no option to move it, I can live with that.

Second, there are still folks who loathe "toasts" and would really like the text to just scroll and fade overlaid on the world view, unselectable. (I believe this used to be especially handy for mouselook -- which is a mode I never use myself so I have no idea how local chat works with mouselook now, if at all.) Personally, I'm okay with toasts, but I think there are enough people who prefer the text overlay that it may be justified to make that an option in place of toasts.

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I want:

Tabs at the top right, bottom, whereever with the picture of the group chat that I am in.  I want it to highlight when there is activitiy. Or to easily close the chat altogether.  Same with individual chatters.

This would be a good feature because then I won't miss any conversations or I can easily ignore conversations.

I want:  A small chat bar on the screen, where I can type something out, and hit escape to go back to the vitural world.  I do not want to bring up multiple windows just to say something stupid or to see what is being said.

I don't want:  to have to navigate multiple windows and settings for things that would have, used to be, or should be one click away.

I don't want: An interface that resembles IRC in 1996 nor Windows 3.11.  I appreciate there are many of us older folk over 30 on here that remember these things, but I finally have a virtual world in 2013.

Why does the "chat" button stay highlighted over every little thing, or "toaster"?  Clutter, useless, and hinders seeing real chat.  Conditions me to not see nor pay attention to actual chat now.
Why is the group messages still populating on the top right, except now I just don't know what groups they belong to?  Pointless, creates other problems, I just stop paying attention to group chat altogether now.

I've used the standard viewer exclusively since my rez-day, but if I find a TPV, this seems like the time for it.

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