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A better viewer than the recent Firestorm? (March21)


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6 hours ago, bigmoe Whitfield said:

that looked like v3 of the SL viewer when it loaded,  I want nothing to do with that v3 ui, I thought catznip was like firestorm and ditched that horrid v3 interface.

Our "horrid" is up to version 6, now, Moe.  Keep up!

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11 hours ago, bigmoe Whitfield said:

that looked like v3 of the SL viewer when it loaded,  I want nothing to do with that v3 ui, I thought catznip was like firestorm and ditched that horrid v3 interface.

None of the non-V1 based Viewers ditched the V2 interface. We all use it, we just lay it out differently. The V2 interface is actually pretty good and very powerful under the hood, just no one seems to want to look into it and use it (especially LL, they make it extremely obvious that they are unaware of the capabilities of their own UI, which isn't a surprise considering that the team making it got ditched after receiving heavy flak for what essentially boils down to people not wanting a more modern interface and some initial issues which are to be expected considering that it was a total rebuilt of the entire UI). I prefer the V2 UI (pre 2.7+) over V1 and V3 (post 2.7).

15 hours ago, Rowan Amore said:

I couldn't figure out how to chat without having to have the chat window up.  As you said, you don't have the chat bar at the bottom.  I've only used the chat window for IM and group chat, never local so I was a bit confused.

No one except Firestorm and V1 has that bottom chat bar, although you can put it in the bottom if you pop it out.

Edited by NiranV Dean
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42 minutes ago, NiranV Dean said:

None of the non-V1 based Viewers ditched the V2 interface. We all use it, we just lay it out differently. The V2 interface is actually pretty good and very powerful under the hood, just no one seems to want to look into it and use it (especially LL, they make it extremely obvious that they are unaware of the capabilities of their own UI, which isn't a surprise considering that the team making it got ditched after receiving heavy flak for what essentially boils down to people not wanting a more modern interface and some initial issues which are to be expected considering that it was a total rebuilt of the entire UI). I prefer the V2 UI (pre 2.7+) over V1 and V3 (post 2.7).

No one except Firestorm and V1 has that bottom chat bar, although you can put it in the bottom if you pop it out.

I've used Firestorm exclusively since 2010 or around there sometime.  And how does one 'pop it out'?  

Edited by Rowan Amore
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2 hours ago, Rowan Amore said:

I've used Firestorm exclusively since 2010 or around there sometime.  And how does one 'pop it out'?  

I am guessing there is a setting in preferences that makes this work -- and if so I set it up so long ago I have no clue where it might be (thanks to the backup and restore settings)  but All "I" do is click on the "NEARBY CHAT" button and the pane pops out.  You can see from the graphic when you mouse over it also give you another option to show and hide window.

image.png.e7542abe9c7e896f46d0b57a71809924.png

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8 minutes ago, Chic Aeon said:

I am guessing there is a setting in preferences that makes this work -- and if so I set it up so long ago I have no clue where it might be (thanks to the backup and restore settings)  but All "I" do is click on the "NEARBY CHAT" button and the pane pops out.  You can see from the graphic when you mouse over it also give you another option to show and hide window.

image.png.e7542abe9c7e896f46d0b57a71809924.png

I know where it is in firestorm.  It's BD and Catznip I can't find it in.

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22 minutes ago, Rowan Amore said:

I know where it is in firestorm.  It's BD and Catznip I can't find it in.

(I'm assuming "pop out" here refers to bringing up the Nearby Chat window.)

I don't know BD, but I expect it's like Catznip and the Linden viewer: just hit Enter while mouse focus is on the world. Ctrl-T should work too, which thankfully was preserved in Firestorm, too.

(On those infrequent occasions I use Firestorm, I'm forever forgetting I can't simply hit Enter to type in chat.)

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From my own experience, Singularity is the fastest viewer available - with the exception of Alchemy.  Alchemy doesn't see very many updates though, while Singularity has nightly builds you can download.  Catznip was not any faster for me than Firestorm the last I tried it.  It is a great viewer though, and has a lot of support behind it - and a lot of people find it faster on their computers.  LL's viewer is not significantly faster than Firestorm for me. 

With that said, all of the creature comforts of Firestorm make it impossible for me to quit it :) I just turn the LOD way down, drop the draw distance, and make a few other adjustments if necessary when the lag gets too intensive. 

For those of you curious, you should just try as many viewers as you can find, and decide for yourselves.  People have different experiences with viewers on their computers.  While Singularity might run faster on my computer, you may find another viewer that runs faster. 

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29 minutes ago, Istelathis said:

Alchemy doesn't see very many updates though, while Singularity has nightly builds you can download.

Alchemy is being actively worked on, but you'll only find public beta test builds on the Alchemy viewer Discord channel. While I agree on Singularity being the fastest, it is unclear whether there'll be any more Nightly builds made available, the last one (8419) having been released back in February, I think.

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Every chat window in CHUI has this button to pop it out, including the nearby chat.

image.png.95b601801de5a8b8d9b161ad5b653225.png

A popped out window then has the option to be collapsed to a chatbar or brought back to the conversations window.

image.png.d247107f913eeb62086210dca2d43186.png

Collapsing to a chatbar is only really helpful with the local chat obviously, that way you can have a free floating chatbar that you can put anywhere you want it (including into the lower left corner below local chat) like i had it since CHUI.

image.thumb.png.38a2892b899e95a5bf2a67cf55c88037.png

You can expand it to see the local chat history at any time if you need.

I'm surprised this is unknown considering its right there and will be found in a matter of seconds of checking out the very few buttons the chat window has.

BD also has the option to change the chatbar behavior more to the V1 one by making it auto defocus or auto hide after sending a message (hitting enter), or alternatively whenever the chat loses focus (which in combination with auto defocus does the same as auto hide on enter except it also hides when clicking out of the chatbar). 

image.png.97d2dac348e9de8d395d6452cc2c8d8b.png

Edited by NiranV Dean
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1 hour ago, NiranV Dean said:

I'm surprised this is unknown considering its right there and will be found in a matter of seconds of checking out the very few buttons the chat window has.

Colour me surprised, I've not know this until now.

I can offer an insight though into why I and possibly many other users don't go happily pressing every button here in there in true Alexie-Sayle style(*) - there's no undo.

Accidentally prod a button here or there and suddenly your interface is foreign ground, your old familiar sighting marks are gone, and if only you could click "edit - undo last action". It would be nice to have a "undo last command" button, or at the least a "revert UI to default"

 

Other places where I have wished for an undo - 

Accidentally set a texture on all faces of all children because although you had clicked on edit-linked-parts or select-face and thought it had stuck but it hadn't, and you're scrooged.

 

* "What's this button do 'ere? what's this button do 'ere?" - (Hello John got a new motor?)

 

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4 hours ago, Profaitchikenz Haiku said:

Colour me surprised, I've not know this until now.

I can offer an insight though into why I and possibly many other users don't go happily pressing every button here in there in true Alexie-Sayle style(*) - there's no undo.

Accidentally prod a button here or there and suddenly your interface is foreign ground, your old familiar sighting marks are gone, and if only you could click "edit - undo last action". It would be nice to have a "undo last command" button, or at the least a "revert UI to default"

 

Other places where I have wished for an undo - 

Accidentally set a texture on all faces of all children because although you had clicked on edit-linked-parts or select-face and thought it had stuck but it hadn't, and you're scrooged.

 

* "What's this button do 'ere? what's this button do 'ere?" - (Hello John got a new motor?)

 

Buttons like this have tooltips.

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On 9/11/2021 at 9:27 PM, Rowan Amore said:

It's only in the newest version.  It does make a difference for me.

 It did for me too, but I still freeze and crash after about 2 hours on Firestorm . My computer is within the specs needed for SL 

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1 hour ago, KarraSue said:

 It did for me too, but I still freeze and crash after about 2 hours on Firestorm . My computer is within the specs needed for SL 

If you are going by this page for that statement ... no, your computer most certainly is not within the specs. That page is woefully out of date.

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I agree Firestorm has the best tools I want to use, but a lot of people I've talked to in SL are using FS with "ONLY FRIENDS" turned on when they go somewhere with other people (me too) . So is this what we really want ? I think it's time for the FS team to focus more on performance going forward, even to mitigate the negative impact of the damn EEP....*sighs*

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1 hour ago, RicDelMoro said:

I think it's time for the FS team to focus more on performance going forward

good news

Beq Janus, a FS team member, has been posting quite a lot on here about the performance advances work they are currently working on 

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11 hours ago, Mollymews said:

good news

Beq Janus, a FS team member, has been posting quite a lot on here about the performance advances work they are currently working on 

Heh, yes.  And apparently the biggest performance improvement is to not render content that causes large numbers of "draw calls".  And it appears that, statistically speaking, that content is primarily avatars wearing mesh bodies with "alpha cuts", which is apparently most if not all of them!  I can see why that feature to render only friends got popular.  Always blame the other guy, or the software, or the people that wrote it.  Apparently the correct "other guy" to blame is.....  all of us.  Yes, I have a mesh body, yes it has many alpha cuts, no, it's not got a Bakes on Mesh equivalent.   At least, I don't think "Avatar 2.0" has a BoM version.  I would switch to that so fast fur would fly.  I tried other bodies.  Too 'glamorous", or something.  I wanna put a fur texture on it and run around without clothes and not have "features" showing through.  When I switch back to the 'system body' I am disgusted at how lumpy and inorganic it looks, so that's not the solution.  When I was building my own viewer I could change the system body to be more organic in appearance by changing vertex positions and weights in the source files.  This made others look better to me too, but didn't affect my appearance on their screens, so I stopped fooling myself with that crazy amount of repetitive effort for such a small return.

Now what am I gonna do?

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2 hours ago, Ardy Lay said:

Heh, yes.  And apparently the biggest performance improvement is to not render content that causes large numbers of "draw calls".  And it appears that, statistically speaking, that content is primarily avatars wearing mesh bodies with "alpha cuts", which is apparently most if not all of them!  I can see why that feature to render only friends got popular.  Always blame the other guy, or the software, or the people that wrote it.  Apparently the correct "other guy" to blame is.....  all of us.  Yes, I have a mesh body, yes it has many alpha cuts, no, it's not got a Bakes on Mesh equivalent.   At least, I don't think "Avatar 2.0" has a BoM version.  I would switch to that so fast fur would fly.  I tried other bodies.  Too 'glamorous", or something.  I wanna put a fur texture on it and run around without clothes and not have "features" showing through.  When I switch back to the 'system body' I am disgusted at how lumpy and inorganic it looks, so that's not the solution.  When I was building my own viewer I could change the system body to be more organic in appearance by changing vertex positions and weights in the source files.  This made others look better to me too, but didn't affect my appearance on their screens, so I stopped fooling myself with that crazy amount of repetitive effort for such a small return.

Now what am I gonna do?

according to what Beq has posted recently they are working on mesh uploader calculations for both attachments and parcel objects (arctan and LI), so to better reflect the rendering costs of.  They are also working on the telemetry tool which helps to inform where rendering and code improvements in general can be made/obtained. Which is all useful. The observation about alpha cuts has come out of this work

about modding the base Linden avatar shape itself into a new improved shape

i thnk is some merit to making a drop-in replacement avatar shape file and improved viewer shape tool, as if this was done then we would have flex cloth, and the capability to make rigged clothing within the viewer

capabilities which have been part of the standard Linden avatar since inception, just that the viewer tools to do this are pretty primitive and never got any love improvement wise

 

Edited by Mollymews
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6 minutes ago, Mollymews said:

about modding the base Linden avatar shape itself into a new improved shape

I'd love to see that get pushed through, although I'd expect that to meet a lot of LL resistance. "shared experience" yadda yadda.

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5 minutes ago, Quistess Alpha said:

I'd love to see that get pushed through, although I'd expect that to meet a lot of LL resistance. "shared experience" yadda yadda.

the easiest way to do this I think,  so it doesn't break existing content, is to have two client side installed files. The standard shape and the new improved shape.  And there is a flag which indicates which of the two, each avatar in the view are wearing, viewer renders accordingly

Edited by Mollymews
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1 minute ago, Mollymews said:

the easiest way to do this I think,  so it doesn't break existing content, is to have two client side installed files. The standard shape and the new improved shape.  And there is a flag which indicates which of the two the avatars in the view are wearing, viewer renders accordingly

Oh I agree, it wouldn't be /technically/ hard to do, It's just I don't see much difference between this and say, mirrors, which, technical limitations aside, aren't allowed because LL says "no,"

 

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26 minutes ago, Mollymews said:

i thnk is some merit to making a drop-in replacement avatar shape file and improved viewer shape tool, as if this was done then we would have flex cloth, and the capability to make rigged clothing within the viewer

capabilities which have been part of the standard Linden avatar since inception, just that the viewer tools to do this are pretty primitive and never got any love improvement wise

 

This is very reminiscent of the 2010 Emerald viewer bouncing breasts: Fractured Crystal said that he found the code was already there in the viewer, just commented out, so he turned it on, and the rest is history.

My thoughts are though, suppose FS does indeed manage to get this working, all of a sudden their viewer becomes the must-have, and what are the other TPVs and the Linden Viewer team supposed to do? The bouncing breasts code was there for everybody to use so effectively it was a shared resource.

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12 minutes ago, Profaitchikenz Haiku said:

My thoughts are though, suppose FS does indeed manage to get this working, all of a sudden their viewer becomes the must-have, and what are the other TPVs and the Linden Viewer team supposed to do?

i think that it goes the way everything goes should a TPV dev want to do something about this.  Do the mods and then submit them to Linden. Linden will decide yes or no to incorporate it into the official viewer build as they do

sans anyone doing this then we wait for Patch Linden to realise their thoughts about Body 2.0 which they floated as a thought at the last SL birthday bash. Which could be a long wait, given the long list of everything else that needs Developer Linden attention

a aside about doing big TPV proof of concept projects that have a potential to take SL in new directions

animats mentioned in another post about a proof of concept they were working on (which I think involves Vulkan in some way, not sure exactly). A post which prompted  Monty Linden to respond that they would be very interested in seeing that

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another thought

it could be that to grow the Linden dev team, they could create resident developer contractor accounts similar to the Moles.  Like call them Chipmunk or something. Then Linden could hire experienced resident coders on the same basis as they do the Moles - here is the project, here is the delivery timeline, away you go and get it done

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