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I was an active SL resident for 3 years from 2004 to 2007.  I did a lot of things in SL including being active in the art community, playing music, hosting game shows, writing LLScript, doing a lot of building and getting involved in volunteering/charity.  So, what has changed?  Besides being more than rusty as I went and used the viewer, what should I be looking to do now 10 years later.  I see it still lags :)  .....   Just wanted to say "hi again". 

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Welcome back! If you'd like to see what's been going on in sl since you've left I'd recommend visiting the following sim: Second Life 1999 / 2017 - THE STORY

It's a historical sim that highlights the more prominent changes and advancements throughout the history of SL from its inception until today. Its a linear experience and the messages are conveyed through storyboards, video and pictures. Each section represents one year in SL. I really enjoyed it a lot and I'd highly recommend seeing it.

While some things remain the same, a lot has also changed.

 

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25 minutes ago, Chase01 said:

Welcome back! If you'd like to see what's been going on in sl since you've left I'd recommend visiting the following sim: Second Life 1999 / 2017 - THE STORY

It's a historical sim that highlights the more prominent changes and advancements throughout the history of SL from its inception until today. Its a linear experience and the messages are conveyed through storyboards, video and pictures. Each section represents one year in SL. I really enjoyed it a lot and I'd highly recommend seeing it.

While some things remain the same, a lot has also changed.

 

This sounds awesome.  I didn't come to SL until 2007, but then I've been mostly gone the last 5 years.  This should provide a cool catch-up.

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49 minutes ago, GranddadGotMojo said:

[ .... ] So, what has changed? [ .... ]

Welcome home.  :)

The two big things that most people will probably forget to mention:

1.  Linden Lab no longer shuts down the entire grid for maintenance half the day on Wednesdays, the way they were still doing it in 2007.  Instead, they do rolling restarts across all of the regions on the main channel starting at dawn on Tuesdays, and on RC channel regions on Wednesdays (usually).  "Rolling" means that only a fraction of the grid is off line at once, generally for the few minutes that it takes to restart its servers.  You can almost always find an on-line region to log in to, or to move to temporarily.  And you can always see the schedule of upcoming maintenance ( and the current state of unexpected maintenance) at  https://secondlife-status.statuspage.io/.

2. Linden Lab no longer saves up all of the bug repairs and updated features for a massive viewer upgrade three or four times a year.  Instead, they deal with changes as quickly as they can and issue upgrades every week or two.  The third-party viewers (also an innovation since 2007) also upgrade fairly frequently.  That doesn't mean that we no longer have bugs -- dream on! -- but it means that many of the annoying ones are addressed much faster than they were the last time you were in SL.

Yes, there is still lag.  That's never going away.  People keep getting better and better hardware and the Internet gets more reliable, but new features keep adding to the list of things that can slow your viewer down.  It's an arms race.  Still, as hard as it is for people who have only been in SL for the past 4 or 5 years to believe, lag used to be loads worse for most of us.

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35 minutes ago, LittleMe Jewell said:

This sounds awesome.  I didn't come to SL until 2007, but then I've been mostly gone the last 5 years.  This should provide a cool catch-up.

Post back and let me know what you think of it! :D

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11 hours ago, Chase01 said:

Welcome back! If you'd like to see what's been going on in sl since you've left I'd recommend visiting the following sim: Second Life 1999 / 2017 - THE STORY

It's a historical sim that highlights the more prominent changes and advancements throughout the history of SL from its inception until today. Its a linear experience and the messages are conveyed through storyboards, video and pictures. Each section represents one year in SL. I really enjoyed it a lot and I'd highly recommend seeing it.

While some things remain the same, a lot has also changed.

 

Had a quick look and LMed the place for a later visit. Definetely worth taking the time for a proper visit!

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On 4/17/2017 at 5:37 PM, Chase01 said:

Post back and let me know what you think of it! :D

I thought it was great. There should be a large display about this, with a link, at the area where the new avatars come inworld.  If it is there, then it is not very prominent because a few weeks ago I brought a new avi online and never saw anything.  I think it is something SL should promote, though I swear I have never heard of it in all my years here.  In any case, I loved getting some of the history, being reminded of some of the things from when I first came inworld, and also catching up on some of the big strides in the last few years.  I never knew folks used to have to pay to teleport and had to do it from huge hubs (cannot even imagine); I had totally forgotten about the Teen Grid; I had wondered about the change from Burning Life to Burn2.

I've grabbed an LM for the place and will offer it to newbies along with other misc newcomer stuff I give out.  Thanks again. 

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On 4/17/2017 at 6:13 PM, GranddadGotMojo said:

So, what has changed?  Besides being more than rusty as I went and used the viewer, what should I be looking to do now 10 years later.  I see it still lags :) 

There's a little more documentation on what causes lag these days and LL has implemented at least one feature designed to reduce one of the sources of lag. If you see a brightly coloured pixel instead of an avatar on your screen, it's because that avatar creates a lot of graphical and/or bandwidth lag. This has encouraged some content creators to get better at optimizing their work which in turn has lead to fewer laggy avatars.

Another thing LL has done is make scripting a bit more efficient. You no longer need to put scripts in every prim of an object. One central script can no do the job. This has helped a lot. LL has also created scripting features which allow you to see the script use of others. A lot of sims use this to encourage people to reduce their script use, though these days it's less necessary than it was in the past.

 

Mesh import is a big thing and has had both good and bad impacts on SL. On the good side, it's now possible to create much more detailed looking content. On the down side, there's three different versions of rigged mesh as LL finally realized they'd goofed on the first two attempts.  A lot of people use mesh bodies to replace their avatars now, too, which has allowed for much better looking avatars, but has fractured the clothing market. Clothes are now largely made for specific mesh bodies and a lot of the more popular mesh bodies are no-mod, limiting how much you can customize them. So while avatars are generally better looking, you could argue that there's also less variety.

LL added a few big new features in the form of Pathfinding and Experiences, but you might never actually see these features in use because LL has done a really poor job of showcasing them. Certain pathfinding features have resulted in much smoother scripted motion in sims, such as elevators. Doomed Ship is a really good example of that. Experiences allow for more interactive mechanics in a sim, such as teleporters you can walk into to use, rather than sitting or clicking on clunking prim teleporters. Experiences can also be used for auto-attaching items, like you'd be able to pick up a hammer by clicking on it, causing your avatar to automatically wear it, and then use it to break down a door. LL has used this feature set for games like Horizons. I use Experiences for teleporters a lot, and some fun visual effects, but I've yet to see wide use of Experiences in SL at large.

On 4/17/2017 at 7:21 PM, Rolig Loon said:

Yes, there is still lag.  That's never going away.  People keep getting better and better hardware and the Internet gets more reliable, but new features keep adding to the list of things that can slow your viewer down.  It's an arms race.  Still, as hard as it is for people who have only been in SL for the past 4 or 5 years to believe, lag used to be loads worse for most of us.

The main problem is that LL encourages people to create laggy content, and does very little to help people reduce lag. There is so much LL could do right now to start eliminating much of SL's lag and performance problems. They just choose not to.

 

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3 hours ago, Penny Patton said:

So while avatars are generally better looking, you could argue that there's also less variety.

I may get some flak for this but I have to disagree with that statement. Bodily, mesh avatars look better than system ones, but "better looking" to me means facially; e.g. she's a good looking girl, means that she has a good looking face.

Beauty is certainly in the eye of the beholder, so it's totally subjective, but I've noticed in recent years that there are a lot fewer 'good looking' female faces around compared to pre-mesh. I don't see many really beautiful faces any more. Being a bloke, I only look at girls in that way :)  A week or so ago, I had occassion to redo my female, all system, alt, and she's much better looking than most of the mesh girls I see. (I only ever use her for positioning animations, but I needed to redo her).

I know that it's my subjective eyes but, imo, female avatars are generally worse looking now, not better looking. Not being an expert in mesh heads, I don't know why it's changed but, in my view, it's generally changed for the worse.

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5 hours ago, Phil Deakins said:

[ .... ]

Beauty is certainly in the eye of the beholder, so it's totally subjective, but I've noticed in recent years that there are a lot fewer 'good looking' female faces around compared to pre-mesh. I don't see many really beautiful faces any more. Being a bloke, I only look at girls in that way :)  [ .... ]

I understand what you mean, Phil, but I think the underlying problem is the lack of variety that Penny pointed out.  Mesh avatars have developed a (to me) disturbing Stepford Wives sameness over the past couple of years.  It's what happens when we have a shrinking gene pool.  In the good old days, each of us had to tweak 78 appearance sliders to find the shape that was us.  Some people -- more guys than women, I suspect -- lived with the defaults or bought premade shapes that some designer was marketing.  Most of us, though, kept fiddling with the sliders, and we got a remarkable diversity of appearances.  Some were pretty ghastly, and some were strikingly beautiful.  Most importantly, they were each attractive according to a different person's standard of beauty.

Mesh bodies have a lot to recommend them.  They're factory-made, of-the-shelf creations, though.  They don't allow for the amount of tweaking and customizing that I have been doing with my av for ten years now.  If I were to invest in a mesh head, I could find a very pretty one with someone else's idea of pretty molded into it.  But it wouldn't be me.

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Thanks everybody for the comments.  In the last 10 years, I have done game development in Unreal Engine (including scripting) and a lot of 3D modelling in 3DS Max and Maya, so, I am quite excited about looking into doing meshes and rigging in Second Life.  I owned a couple of dress shops back in the day run by my female alt (Dixie Starr), so, I will also look into doing clothes at least for myself.  Also, I plan on doing some "clubbing" to check out the music scene and see if I want to get into that again.  Thanks again and I am glad to be back home!  A couple of pics from back in the day.

Creative Corner.png

DixieStarrFashoin.jpg

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