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Demise of High Fidelity, how that might impact Sansar

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12 minutes ago, CoffeeDujour said:

HTTP textures in the viewer are downloaded just as fast as your CPU/Network allows. There is no left over legacy throttling. The download speed might not be the absolute max your connection allows because your CPU is busy doing a lot of this and that comes with significant overhead ... just like copying 1gb of tiny files is way slower than a 1gb single file.

I once thought that, but the network stats do not agree. This is a CPU and network monitor running after a TP to a place never before visited. Disk for the Firestorm cache is an SSD, so that's not the bottleneck. Available network bandwidth is about 50Mb/s, or 6.25MB (megabytes)/second.

 

loadingtest1.thumb.png.a577919efcf85ce073d6018c4a64e91c.png

Note the big hump in network usage in the first 10 seconds. Then it tails off. Over 30 secs until the scene stops changing. Took the screenshot when the image stopped changing. This is typical of what happens when you enter a new area. There's a big asset load at first, and then asset loading slows way down. One thread is maxed out, but there's CPU time available for other threads. Texture download and decode is not done in the main thread; other threads do that.

 

loadingtest4.thumb.png.3725dc1b6ae79b7a639ec0551dad88b5.png

Same pattern in a simpler place. Around 20 seconds, the background rock texture finally loaded. Not out of any viewer side resources here.

Something is stalling texture downloads. Don't know what. But it's not lack of network bandwidth or CPU time.

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Just now, animats said:

I once thought that, but the network stats do not agree. This is a CPU and network monitor running after a TP to a place never before visited. Disk for the Firestorm cache is an SSD, so that's not the bottleneck. Available network bandwidth is about 50Mb/s, or 6.25MB (megabytes)/second.

Note the big hump in network usage in the first 10 seconds. Then it tails off. Over 30 secs until the scene stops changing. Took the screenshot when the image stopped changing. This is typical of what happens when you enter a new area. There's a big asset load at first, and then asset loading slows way down. One thread is maxed out, but there's CPU time available for other threads. Texture download and decode is not done in the main thread; other threads do that.

other threads do that

That is not how this works. Please get a debugger and go look at the code.

Yes, the viewer has many threads, but it's still locked to the throughput of a single core.

 

Just now, animats said:

Something is stalling texture downloads. Don't know what. But it's not lack of network bandwidth or CPU time.

Your CPU appears to be running one core at 100% .. that's your bottleneck. It's running SL, it's doing stuff, it might not be doing what you hope it's doing, but it's doing its best.

Image result for venusaur doing his best

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24 minutes ago, CoffeeDujour said:

Every single better designed virtual world has tanked, probably because all the magic is in the janky interaction between all these systems.

Which is why I argue for technical improvements, not a new system. (Although I do wonder What Would Epic Do? Tim Sweeny, CEO of Epic Games (Fortnite, UE4) wants to build the metaverse. They have the people, know-how, track record, and money to do it. Everybody else trying this has been a low-budget startup.)

 

43 minutes ago, CoffeeDujour said:

SL server side runs to a very different drum beat than it does client side. This is by design. Lots of scripts looks bad in the numbers, but if you're not looking at the numbers and trying to continually test microsecond performance then it's not perceptible and not related to the rate of server/client updates - which is very low by modern standards.

If that were true, breedables wouldn't be a problem.

 

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Just as people who liked social VR looked to statistically significant events to justify the tech...I look to events like these to ram the point home "we should never have wasted time & money on this garbage in the first place".

But people only learn the hard way now!

Edited by AlexandriaBrangwin
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17 hours ago, AlexandriaBrangwin said:

But people only learn the hard way now!

It's easy to mistake a brilliant idea for being in the right place at the right time.

 

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22 hours ago, animats said:

Although I do wonder What Would Epic Do? Tim Sweeny, CEO of Epic Games (Fortnite, UE4) wants to build the metaverse. They have the people, know-how, track record, and money to do it. Everybody else trying this has been a low-budget startup.)

 

Fortnite is a micro transaction dress up store built with the sole purpose of sucking up all your money, it happens to have a game on the side.

 

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On 12/16/2019 at 6:56 PM, AlexandriaBrangwin said:

Just as people who liked social VR looked to statistically significant events to justify the tech...I look to events like these to ram the point home "we should never have wasted time & money on this garbage in the first place".

But people only learn the hard way now!

 

hqdefault.jpg

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On 12/16/2019 at 4:56 PM, AlexandriaBrangwin said:

Just as people who liked social VR looked to statistically significant events to justify the tech...I look to events like these to ram the point home "we should never have wasted time & money on this garbage in the first place".

From a broader industry perspective, there's been a desperate attempt to come up with a really big seller in the consumer electronics space. Manufacturers are hurting. The desktop computer, laptop computer, and smartphone markets are saturated - most sales replace previous units, and price competition is squeezing manufacturers. (Price a flatscreen TV.) The previous big must-have thing was supposed to be 3D TV, which was a total flop. So high hopes were pinned on VR goggles.

So billions of dollars went into VR companies, especially the headgear companies. Game companies started making VR games. 2017 was supposed to be the year of VR. That's the boom HF, Sansar, and Sinespace were trying to get in on.

Total flop.

There's also a big problem with VR; about 10-15% of the population gets nauseated. That's higher than amusement park rides.

Zuckerberg still hasn't given up. Facebook Horizons launches soon, and Facebook owns Oculus. Maybe throwing enough money at this will work in time. They certainly have enough money to try.

Carmack, who just got out of the VR business, claims that the headgear has to come down to swim goggle size to sell at all, and down to eyeglass size to take off.  Plus good image quality across the entire visual field. Plus an affordable price. That's a few years away, at least.

Someday, maybe, Pokemon Go AR goggles at the supermarket checkout for $39.95. But not this year or next.

Meanwhile, we have really nice big flat screens. We can do a lot with those.

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I have a half-baked theory, for whatever it's worth, that some big tech companies are interested in gaming and social VR particularly for collecting ad-targeting signals.

Facebook's recent change to the Oculus privacy policy means that "Oculus activity can now be used to serve up customized ads on your connected Facebook account." This frankly makes a lot more sense to Facebook's future than to try to extract rents from gaming content shown through the Oculus (or even sillier, try to make Facebook-caliber margin from Oculus hardware sales). Facebook's core competence is ad targeting by social signals, so they really can't afford to be completely blind to the social aspect of gaming, and Oculus + VR is their foothold there.

Meanwhile, Google presumably hopes to get comparable social gaming signals from their new Stadia platform to target search advertising. Google is apparently abandoning VR at least for now, by pulling the plug on Daydream and Cardboard. I don't know enough about gaming to know if YouTube gameplay-streaming is even relevant; I know it ain't Amazon's Twitch, but I also have no idea if even Amazon can learn anything from Twitch data to better target advertising. I mean, there is something in gameplay-streaming for social discovery of games, which is certainly useful for the gaming market; it's not so obvious to me that this is a useful signal for broader, non-game-related advertising.

So does this make anybody want to buy a social VR content platform such as High Fidelity or Sansar? It seems sooner or later there should be a whole lot of advertising money sloshing around social VR content, with the content (games and beyond) the lure for ad-targeting signal collection.

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6 hours ago, Qie Niangao said:

 I mean, there is something in gameplay-streaming for social discovery of games, which is certainly useful for the gaming market; it's not so obvious to me that this is a useful signal for broader, non-game-related advertising.

Valve doesn't seem to have exploited Steam data for non-game-related advertising. Good for them.

The problem with using Google non-ad services is that they tend to discontinue them. Stadia is so far outside Google's main profit model that game publishers fear it will be discontinued. Google tends to discontinue anything not hugely profitable for them.

Gameplay streaming is probably the best way to get Second Life on mobile. Also onto TVs, Chromebooks, etc. Full SL viewers need more bandwidth and graphics power than most cell phones have. It's interesting to realize that SL needs more bandwidth to deliver assets than it takes to deliver the finished images as video. The downside of streaming is that somebody has to pay for the remote machine that's running the viewer. Usually the user. Stadia is $10/month for now, but does not support SL. Shadow, which rents you a remote Windows 10 PC, charges $35/month, discounted to $156/year as a promotion until they get 8000 users. It should be possible to run SL on Shadow, because you can install software on your remote virtual machine. Anyone tried?

Getting Second Life onto a TV would be an interesting exercise on user interface design for the viewer. When the user just has a game controller, you have to drastically simplify the interface. SL could use that.

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On 12/16/2019 at 1:59 PM, CoffeeDujour said:

Every single better designed virtual world has tanked, probably because the all the magic is in the janky interaction between all these systems.

Hahahaha!  Yeah, I can't say that statement is incorrect.  The janky interaction between the 'residents' is important too. 

Edited by Ardy Lay

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sansardec2019.thumb.png.fa8c7738302a3a62323be5cddcb58c3d.png

Sansar usage up 0.91% in December! Almost 14 concurrent users on average! 20 right now!

Second Life right now, 40,133 users online.

Any questions?

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1 hour ago, animats said:

Second Life right now, 40,133 users online.

Any questions?

nobody dares to pull the plug?  ...
 

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I am pretty sure those charts show only those users who are logged into Sansar using their Steam account credentials. I could be wrong on that, though. Having said that, and without information coming from Linden Lab on concurrency, I would find it hard to believe the non-Steam users of Sansar would vastly outnumber Steam users.

 

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1 hour ago, DilliDallagio said:

I am pretty sure those charts show only those users who are logged into Sansar using their Steam account credentials. I could be wrong on that, though. Having said that, and without information coming from Linden Lab on concurrency, I would find it hard to believe the non-Steam users of Sansar would vastly outnumber Steam users.

Linden Lab gives somewhat higher numbers, which includes people who created non-Steam Sansar accounts. That probably includes most Sansar creators. I vaguely remember LL claiming a peak around 1000 during some heavily promoted event.

As with financial numbers,  usage stats from third parties are usually more trustworthy and less cherry-picked.

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1 hour ago, animats said:

Linden Lab gives somewhat higher numbers, which includes people who created non-Steam Sansar accounts. That probably includes most Sansar creators. I vaguely remember LL claiming a peak around 1000 during some heavily promoted event.

As with financial numbers,  usage stats from third parties are usually more trustworthy and less cherry-picked.

Those ARE "only Steam" accounts in the lists. Also people working on their own builds are not counted by the typical aps keeping track. The Lab tracks everyone == in the Lookbook, a private or working world, or out in public but does not publish those numbers.  This all from Ebbe on Discord some months ago. 

 

But no matter how you cut it the populous has not increased but a tiny bit over the last two years. There is a big event coming up soon. Will see how many people actually show up for that. I am not crossing fingers as I think this last "pivot" was a sign of desperation -- and put other things on the back burner.

 

Their platform. Their choices. As always.

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There's always someone to apologize for lowering stats, with the weirdest excuses - which is just straight up living in denial.

Some stats are better than NO stats. Between the Steam stats and random looks at who's in world at any given moment;
All Worlds List (View Logged Out Because Users Who Blocked You Are Omitted)


One will find that there isn't much difference in numbers between the two -  like 20 seen on the Sansar Worlds page vs 14 on Steam page.

The Steam stats do not show an increase, but actually a 33% decrease in concurrency overall since last December 2018.

So if they really want to continue with this project, they're going to have to look at all areas - and see what is killing Sansar.
I've been there for a year and seen many things happen that have crippled it.
1) Work people did broke due to avatar updates - from avatars themselves to clothing
2) Social Justice and Gender politics turning Sansar into a battleground instead of a social creative space
3) Constant pivot decisions that affected the individual goals of creators there
4) A choice to hide the worlds users created behind
5) General toxicity, snitch culture, liar culture, victim culture and rampant narcissism
6) Special treatment of individuals and groups
7) Getting upset with the community because they weren't 'producing enough', perhaps regarding worlds or making quests... yet they don't know people were working on them long term...
8) The usual heavy-handedness, zero-tolerance, and sometimes personal thrills of disciplining people to the point that users live in fear of bans and losing all their invested time in Sansar
9) Maybe a repeat point, but general lack of professionalism in all things, and especially with dealing with individuals and groups
10) Undermining of trust in the Sansar marketplace due to assets being uploaded and sold that originate from other sites and not from the creators present on Sansar. At this point, unless the seller states it, you're probably rolling the dice buying something, complimenting them, etc then finding out they didn't make it at all....

I'd love Sansar to succeed, as it would be a platform I could grow with, rather than coming in near the end with SL, which has limited time, be it 1-5 years. However due to many issues, from social to technical, it may simply be doomed unless the cards are shuffled and new and competent people are found to take it to the next level, and more respect for the creators who make content for them.

In the end, and above all else, the responsibility for the success or failure falls on the shoulders of those in management - who make all the decisions, regulations, governance, and application of Sansar. There seems to be no oversight over staff decisions and at least publicly the power seems to be with only 2-3 staff members, who may have to get changed out for Sansar to proceed.

We'll see.

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4 hours ago, entity0x said:

In the end, and above all else, the responsibility for the success or failure falls on the shoulders of those in management - who make all the decisions, regulations, governance, and application of Sansar. There seems to be no oversight over staff decisions and at least publicly the power seems to be with only 2-3 staff members, who may have to get changed out for Sansar to proceed.

I find it utterly laughable they start each update email with "We listened to you!" when I've heard time and time again from creators that the devs do NOT listen to them and prioritize their own creative input/control, even fighting among other developers over what gets implemented as if there is no real leadership at all.

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Posted (edited)
52 minutes ago, Lucia Nightfire said:

I find it utterly laughable they start each update email with "We listened to you!" when I've heard time and time again from creators that the devs do NOT listen to them and prioritize their own creative input/control, even fighting among other developers over what gets implemented as if there is no real leadership at all.

I hardly  ever agree with entity but in this case I think he came fairly close in naming the issues. 

It is dire over there, the worst I have seen in my almost two years. Depression is the feel, sitting on the fence (or leaving) the typical answer to all that has gone wrong in the last year (and before if you have a long history).  

I have no idea what happens in the meetings but the "feeling" is that there are too many cooks in the kitchen each with varying ideas of what will "work".   Even when things ARE working, they get changed over and over and over again. I can't even count how many times the Lookbook has been tweaked since AV2 came on the scene (Sept? not sure).  Most often painfully. 

 

Creators still seem to be supportive of other creators and a few are still trying to be supportive of the platform (in public as I have had PM sessions with some and they are not really all that  "possitive"?   -- well, I don't really know what "all that "could be. )  It is BAD. Worse than after the STEAM debacle (which most all of the citizen creators warned against as "too early").  Worse than other pivots. 

 

I don't really think it is the latest pivot per se that is the problem; it is the long history of pivots and broken promises. Trust is at a new low from what I can see; it certainly is for me.   I have decided not to leave but to hang around and watch what happens.  I don't expect it to be fun but I will still be there.    Since they broke many features that let me create and since my long term monthly sales have dropped to a sixth of their historical norm, I won't be making any more things.   I am interested to see if LL actually lets people make skins for the AV2 avatar. Beyond that there needs to be something of the fireworks category to get my attention and enthusiasm back.  

 

I am NOT ALONE THERE. 

 

EDIT: Ryan posted another article on his blog last night which is both well-written and sad. So those interested might want to check that out. 

Edited by Chic Aeon

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I know that Second Life and Sansar are two totally different products. I also know that today's social needs are very different than they were when Second Life was born as a product. But I've always wondered, why did Sansar go so far in its creation from what Second Life is? Why didn't the creators use the best of Second Life to enhance it and make Sansar better? Sansar was an opportunity to create a natural and necessary evolution of Second Life

I think that if Sansar had been born from the Second Life community, today the great majority of those 45,000 visitors that SL has every day, would be in Sansar creating the world as they did in their time in SL.

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On 1/1/2020 at 7:39 PM, Chic Aeon said:

I have no idea what happens in the meetings but the "feeling" is that there are too many cooks in the kitchen each with varying ideas of what will "work".

Sounds like the SL community at times.

On your topic of the AV, I think one thing is evident enough. When you look at those avatar presets and then you look at SL Flickr, clearly something is "out of touch" with this company. I would also argue that locking the clothing tug feature behind Marvelous Designer was a mistake. Don't get me wrong, MD is a great product. But, it doesn't create an open creative community by locking features behind design products you need to pay for when not everyone is doing it professionally or just every once in a while. And, yeah, the skin thing... in all their years with SL, I don't understand how that was overlooked and worst of all people started getting impatient (or thought they were cool kids) by making and even selling (shame on you) tattoo shells when we already learned our lesson with the onion skin disaster.

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1 hour ago, Kurshie Muromachi said:

Sounds like the SL community at times.

On your topic of the AV, I think one thing is evident enough. When you look at those avatar presets and then you look at SL Flickr, clearly something is "out of touch" with this company. I would also argue that locking the clothing tug feature behind Marvelous Designer was a mistake. Don't get me wrong, MD is a great product. But, it doesn't create an open creative community by locking features behind design products you need to pay for when not everyone is doing it professionally or just every once in a while. And, yeah, the skin thing... in all their years with SL, I don't understand how that was overlooked and worst of all people started getting impatient (or thought they were cool kids) by making and even selling (shame on you) tattoo shells when we already learned our lesson with the onion skin disaster.

The ability to "skin" is apparently on the roadmap again, hopefully this first quarter.   BUT LL also (apparently from tests that several of us did) upped the decimation feature so you upload one texture (which they actually TOLD US TO USE long ago in that "make big textures and see if you can break things" idea.  Some folks worked VERY hard in Substance Painter making nice things on reasonably sized textures (not huge ones) and now are VERY unhappy with the look of their products. I can't say I blame them.   

 

Shifting sands -- shifting sands -- hard to work that way.    

Lots of new folks of late (maybe from SL, don't know). I hope they aren't planning on making much money over there :D.  Still plenty of lovely places to explore though. 

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