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Realtalk: How to get the community to like LL's viewer again?


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My alts use the SL viewer because I don't let them have anything nice. My main uses Firestorm.

I don't use the LL's viewer because it makes me want to punch a kitten due to the lack of features, particularly multi-partial name search in inventory. I also like agent UUID's in their profiles

The vitriol is basically meaningless. The default viewer is the equivalent of the free coat hangers the dry-cleaner gives you with your clothes. They don't care if you don't like them and use your own

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4 minutes ago, Angelina Sinclair said:

I'm surprised at the sheer vitriol hate people have for SL's default viewer. Sure it doesn't have the bells and whistles of firestorm but it still runs good. Anyway LL can salvage this and turn it around?

The vitriol is basically meaningless. The default viewer is the equivalent of the free coat hangers the dry-cleaner gives you with your clothes. They don't care if you don't like them and use your own hangers or even if you insult their hangers as long as you keep paying to get your clothes cleaned there.

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I don't think they really care what viewer people use. It's not like they make money off the viewer. It's not really a bad thing for theirs to be more basic, while others offer more. Some people don't want more confusion with even more options. I love firestorm viewer, but that doesn't mean everyone should. The SL viewer gives me a headache because I can never find how to set things how I like... because it's not there. I don't think they even have the ability to put the user AO into the viewer. But again, makes it less complicated. The only issue is when I'm trying to help someone using a viewer other than mine.. I really can't.

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Well, it all started with Version 2 of the viewer. It was bulky, the GUI took up a lot of screen space, everything looked and felt different from viewer 1.xx, the color scheme had completely changed and whoever coded it had NO idea of how the existing users were using the viewer, instead the coders tried to impose upon us how THEY felt the viewer (and thus SL) should be used.
I was told that this was because LL had outsourced the coding of viewer 2 but I have a hard time accepting this explanation because LL had to sign off on the new viewer after all.

But even with all that aside, the LL viewer only has a basic feature set, perhaps good for those that have only basic requirements, but once you want to get more flexibility (or if you are a Linux user) you will have to use a third party viewer. This makes the TPV look better, and people will say that the LL viewer sucks.

There is no way LL can (or will) salvage the image of their viewer. It is designed to be basic and to remain basic. That's just the way it is.

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I don't hear much vitriol.  There's a bit of over the top partisan language occasionally, like the silly stuff about whether Macs are better than PCs (and vice versa) or whether Coke is better than Pepsi, but that's about it.   

I use the standard LL viewer and Firestorm interchangeably, depending on my mood and the needs of the moment.  Firestorm has a lot more handy tools, but I can get versions of many of their special features in the LL viewer too by just fiddling with Debug Settings.  If I am making stuff that other people are going to use, I always make sure that they will look good and work properly in the LL viewer, regardless of which viewer I used to make them. That means always testing with both of them.  If I am just relaxing with friends, I usually use the LL viewer because it doesn't have a lot of clutter.  

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I would love to use the official Second Life viewer. If they would just add in a few of the handy Firestorm features that I use every single day, I would definitely use it. On the occasions that I have had to use it for mesh uploads, or to try beta releases for BOM and such, I just can't use it for very long without the features I depend on in Firestorm. It would be great if it was a lot more customisable but perhaps they just don't want new users breaking things.

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1 hour ago, Angelina Sinclair said:

I'm surprised at the sheer vitriol hate people have for SL's default viewer. Sure it doesn't have the bells and whistles of firestorm but it still runs good. Anyway LL can salvage this and turn it around?

How existing SL users feel about the LL viewer isn't really what matters.  What is important is does LL need to change that viewer to help with SL retention. IMO, the viewer sure does not help make the SL experience a great one for new users.  If frustrated users are not really determined and/or manage to find out about other viewers, that may play a lot into their decision to leave SL and not come back.

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3 minutes ago, LittleMe Jewell said:

How existing SL users feel about the LL viewer isn't really what matters.  What is important is does LL need to change that viewer to help with SL retention. IMO, the viewer sure does not help make the SL experience a great one for new users.  If frustrated users are not really determined and/or manage to find out about other viewers, that may play a lot into their decision to leave SL and not come back.

So long as LL doesn't try doing another basic viewer ... never again. I watch my kids (well, they used to be kids) playing video games. I don't know how they keep track of all the key and button combinations needed to play. Any SL viewer seems simple to me after that. But perhaps disabling some of the complex stuff initially, along with an obvious way to get it all back.

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Well, the Linden's viewer is pretty good, and it is where all the new technology is inserted.  I've watched interviews with the Linden's over the years, and various leadership has explained user-tests that generally involve taking someone completely new off the street, giving them tasks to do, analyzing the new-user responses, repeating over several such new users, and the driving usability improvements.  The third party viewers target a different audience, and get into things such as RLV that may be a bit awkward for a business to specify and test. 

I don't think the experienced users are really the target market for the Linden Viewer.  I keep the Linden Viewer installed, and log on with it when I need features (e.g., the new estate tools) that the third party developers haven't rolled into their codebase yet.  

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I like LL's viewer and use it most of the time I am just kicking around.  I don't care for FS all that much and I will say it is just personal preference and nothing more. 

If LL would ever let the standard viewer use more than 512MB of texture cache I would likely never use anything else.  I can't remember if this is being addressed with EEP or not.  As it is now, I like Black Dragon best for snapshots that matter.

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I don't use the LL's viewer because it makes me want to punch a kitten due to the lack of features, particularly multi-partial name search in inventory.

I also like agent UUID's in their profiles, legacy profiles, copying an object's key from the edit menu, derendering, blacklisting, area search filters, optionally show muted chat, quick prefs, more than one uri resolving at a time, beacons not disappearing when closing the Beacons menu, sound explorer, anti-spam, not broadcasting my lookat/selection beam/effects, seconds in chat history, anti-attachment detach on tp, blocking ad-hoc sessions from non-friends, group chat snoozing, IM session opens when someone starts typing, account age alerts, cmdline options esp "clrchat", minimap features, disabling tp screens/sound, collision alerts, inventory collapse, settings search, pie menu, skins, blocking left-click sitting, revoking perms, settings backup and a whole lot more schtuff.

This is why I call LL's viewer "Kitten Punch" because without all this stuff using their viewer is frustrating.

Maybe I'm just too spoiled, heh.

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By adding QoL things to it, like ones Lucia listed above. It's kinda funny how it lacks so many useful features (unless you're digging into debug settings, which is even more non user friendly than just having a million of preferences) and yet still confusing to use for someone with little to no experience with games/online platforms.

Back into 2012 after checking what "this SL thing" is about and finding that it's more fun than it looks like, I gave all viewers that were listed on TPV page a try after finding that LL one is just pain for me to use. I did settle on FS back then and still use it to this day. LL one felt clunky to me (UI wise) for the most part, not that I had any real difficulty using it, I had nearly 2 decades worth of gaming experience by then, including doing stuff like running 5 heavily modded clients at the same time in some mmorpgs (because why create a party and share the loot, if you can have all profits from a dungeon run for yourself?), but I still found it painfully uncomfortable to use. And still do, I did instal it for a few minutes last summer to test some stuff once and yep, still it felt the same.

I'm not saying that someone might find FS (or other more advanced veiwers) much easier to use, but if there's roughly the same learning curve (and I do believe it's the same, for all basic stuff at least), than it may as well have some extra features for later.

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1 hour ago, Rhonda Huntress said:

If LL would ever let the standard viewer use more than 512MB of texture cache

this please LL

using a TPV that allows me to use even 1K of my 4K graphics card is really good. It reduces texture thrashing significantly

if it were not for this I would use the LL viewer all the time.  TPVs have a lot of extra features that creatives, roleplayers, etc find super useful in enhancing their own experiences and I am all good with that for them

 

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All TPV viewers start life as Linden Code.

If you see a feature in a TPV that you think should be in the Linden Viewer (and by extension, eventually in every viewer), make that known to your TPV developers of choice and to LL.

Do not expect LL to try TPV viewers and then chase external devs for stuff they like. They do not do this.

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2 hours ago, Rhonda Huntress said:

If LL would ever let the standard viewer use more than 512MB of texture 

It's not unknown for graphics cards by common and reputable manufacturers to lie about how much vram they actually have, especially lower end or mobile. If you try to use more vram than you actually have .. bad things happen.

The Linden viewer has to be the lowest common denominator, and obviously LL can't own every PC or laptop ever.

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51 minutes ago, CoffeeDujour said:

It's not unknown for graphics cards by common and reputable manufacturers to lie about how much vram they actually have, especially lower end or mobile. If you try to use more vram than you actually have .. bad things happen.

The Linden viewer has to be the lowest common denominator, and obviously LL can't own every PC or laptop ever.

this is all true

i would just like a slider that can go higher than 512. Like on Catznip R12.1 which lets me go up to 1360 on my NVdia 1050Ti.  Its really good that I can do this

if such a slider in the SL viewer could let me go higher than 512 then I would happy about that as well

maybe it could be a Debug Setting. Max 512 by default ? Have to go into debug to change the max. I might crash my viewer if I set it to high but I would like to be able to work out myself what my own max. would be

 

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The Lab seem to be very much of the opinion that you shouldn't be able to change a setting and brick your viewer. Can't say I can disagree.

They are aware of the issues, but it's hard to tell if that awareness extends to a real acceptance that there are locations in SL you simply can't visit and ever expect the viewer to stop thrashing with 512mb of vram.

We're still trying to coax a couple of Linden's out to Kitty house as a test location, it eats vram like a between meal snack. I had to move to the other side of the region to get my fps back😱

 

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3 hours ago, steeljane42 said:

 

I'm not saying that someone might find FS (or other more advanced veiwers) much easier to use, but if there's roughly the same learning curve (and I do believe it's the same, for all basic stuff at least), than it may as well have some extra features for later.

 

 

This spoke out a lot to me.  "If the learning curve is the same then it might as well do it on a viewer with more features."

I do enjoy FS but there is just sooo many features. It got so bad they had to add a search bar for their features because at a glance you couldn't find what you wanted. That is just a bad case of feature creep. Some of it can stay but others bits of it should just go.

I know some like the rather in depth technical features but that's just a turn off for new users. That should be locked behind things like how the Advance Menu or Developer Menu are hidden in a sense. Until you hit those key binding they don't pop up. So maybe some of these advance features could be hidden behind check boxes or key combos to activate.

 

It definitely does come down to the learning curve. You really nailed it with that. Unless they some how re-invent things like the inventory window I don't see how they'll be able to retain people better. Hrm.

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The only thing I really have against some TPVs is the prevalence of "client side bypasses" that are touted as "features". Not everything can be 100% server enforced, it doesn't mean it's fine to just ignore it.

I DO understand the reasoning and that there is a demand for those features, I just don't think they are ethical choices as "guests" to the SecondLife platform.

  • Bypassing no-fly zones.
  • Always fly after teleporting (I'm not entirely sure how it's achieved but I assume it is also to bypass no fly zones)
  • Not sending look at targets
  • Displaying look at targets (no legitimate use other than motivating people to disable look at targets)
  • Configurable permission revocation (permissions should be a standard behavior across all viewers so scripters know what to expect)
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1 hour ago, Kyrah Abattoir said:
  • Not sending look at targets
  • Displaying look at targets (no legitimate use other than motivating people to disable look at targets)

I'm pretty sure you can disable it on LL viewer too, through some file edits (yes, not as convenient as through simple setting, but still).

Edit: found the topic where I saw it recently: https://community.secondlife.com/forums/topic/438026-black-dragon/#comment-1913408

And perhaps it's about time LL killed that thing completely. It was among first annoying/weird things that I did look into after joining SL, together with eyes/arm following the building/selection direction. "How do I disable it completely, I don't like seeing mine and seeing others' selection on me". It really should be no one's business what other people are looking at right now.

 

Edited by steeljane42
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32 minutes ago, steeljane42 said:

And perhaps it's about time LL killed that thing completely. It was among first annoying/weird things that I did look into after joining SL, together with eyes/arm following the building/selection direction. "How do I disable it completely, I don't like seeing mine and seeing others' selection on me". It really should be no one's business what other people are looking at right now.

SL was actually praised for how expressive its avatars where back in the days, and the fact that eyes, and heads followed chat speakers and selection hints was a big part of it. It was never intented as a way to know what others are looking at, they are inverted kinematic targets.

I use an AO that doesn't animate the head and neck specifically because it is more natural to have your avatar follow what you are doing instead of staring into the distance like a zombie.

Edited by Kyrah Abattoir
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