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Posts posted by animats

  1. There's been talk of a "super-premium" membership, and some LL people have solicited suggestions. Here's my take on this.

    A "Merchants and Creators" account, for people with enough assets in SL that they need assurances they won't disappear.

    • Costs more than premium. Cost to be determined.
    • All premium features.
    • Uploads are included.
    • 2048 m^2 tier included.
    • Up to 5 associated alts included. Alts don't get tier, but do get uploads, can own land, and can visit premium regions. (A convenience for people who need to separate their landlord account, merchant cash account, etc.)
    • Business to business terms. No "at sole discretion" actions by LL. Contract breach must be alleged and described in writing, customer has 10 days to improve situation and 30 days to cure. Disputes to be resolved by mediation, arbitration, or courts in San Francisco, buyer's choice. (This is pretty standard for B2B. I lease a dedicated server from a data center under terms like that.)
    • Any requirements for identifying the customer must be satisfied during signup for this account. No additional conditions may be required for withdrawals. (That's how real stockbrokers and banks work. None of this "we need more ID before you can take money out".)
    • ID information required is limited to that required by US law.
    • Withdrawals for amounts over US$100 must be paid, at customer request, via some legitimate banking channel, such as ACH or wire transfer. No non-bank third party can be required of the customer. (You don't need PayPal and its problems.)
    • Account balances with Tilia or LL are obligations of both Tilia and LL to the customer. (They don't go away on termination.)
    • Account balances denominated in Linden dollars are also obligations, at 95% of the current rate at which Linden Labs is selling Linden Dollars. (None of this "Linden Dollars are worth nothing" stuff. Yes, there's an SEC compliance issue. So LL needs to have their compliance people get a no-action letter saying that Linden dollars are not a security.)
    • Like 3
    • Haha 7

  2. On 7/8/2019 at 12:39 PM, Penny Patton said:

     Just imagine if anyone, regardless of their skill level, could easily set up an animesh NPC to walk around their yard, stop to water some flowers for a few minutes, then continue around the house to sit on the front porch for a half an hour or so, then get up to check the mail. Applying the waypoints, the animations, everything via a simple to use interface. Pathfinding that anyone could use, not just people who've spent hundreds of hours eyeballs deep in the LSL wiki.

    I agree. I'm trying to do something like that. Over at my house in Bellesaria, there's an animesh NPC in T-shirt, jeans, and ball cap. She walks around, looks at the ocean, and will come over and say hello to anyone who shows up. I have two more NPCs active at my workshop in Vallone. That's a start.

    This is a lot of work. Mostly because of bugs LL won't, or can't fix. It took me about 800 lines of workaround  code in LSL and two months of work to get pathfinding animesh NPCs to work reliably. They can now run for weeks without getting stuck or going off the parcel.

    The main use for pathfinding seems to be zombies. Probably because that's how the motion from pathfinding looks. Especially on overloaded sims, which cause pathfinding to make too few steering corrections, look bad, and run into things.

    This is all way too hard. For the wrong reasons. LL put time and energy and money into pathfinding and animesh, and then they dropped the ball.

  3. I still use an ancient paid-for version of Photoshop Elements on Windows.

    On Linux, I usually use Pinta, which is adequate for cropping and minor color adjustments.

    I've tried The Gimp, and it sucks less than it used to, but I haven't used it enough to be any good at it. Historically it suffered from the open source disease -  a huge number of features in search of an architecture. So did Blender, which has slowly gotten its user interface act together.


  4. Where's the best NPC character movement in-world? I'm looking for smooth movement, good turns, good speed control,  good coordination of animation with base movement, and at least normal SL walking speed. Bots, pathfinding characters, and keyframed animation - approach doesn't matter. I'm working on a pathfinding system and want to see what's already working.

    • Like 1

  5. Advanced hints:

    During a region crossing, you lose permissions momentarily. After the CHANGED_REGION event, there may be a period during which you don't have permissions in the new sim yet. You can see this with llGetPermissions. It's useful to check.

    When you get the permissions back on region crossing completion, it's useful to reset the camera parameters and animations. Sometimes they are lost during a region crossing and need to be reset. If you see a messed-up camera or the avatar out of position on a working vehicle after a region crossing, that's often the problem. (If the camera or avatar rubber-bands back, that's a different problem. If the avatar separates from the vehicle completely, that's a failed region crossing. They're all separate bugs.)


    • Thanks 3

  6. 7 hours ago, Nalates Urriah said:

    And there are numerous studies by serious eggheads paid to determine what actually works. Have you read Longevity in Second Life by Chun-Yuen Teng and Lada A. Adamic at University of Michigan?


    "By far it is interaction with others, whether friends or strangers, that correlated most with long user life."

    • Like 2

  7. On 7/6/2019 at 6:39 PM, RaeLeeH said:

     media saturation that has turned sex, race, gender, nationality, and pretty much every other defining characteristic of what makes us "us" into not just political agendas but divisive issues. And I don't want any part of that.

    Um, yes. In SL, by the way, gender is a floating point number between 0.0 and 1.0. What creators do with that number is up to them, but it can potentially be connected to avatar appearance, if there's enough of a market.

  8. 2 minutes ago, Selene Gregoire said:

    That is what marketing research firms, like the one I used to work at, are for. LL could get feedback from every resident, not just a handful here and there, which does not give an accurate picture. All residents need to be involved, not just some (or at least those willing to participate). This is one of many mistakes LL has never learned from.

    After you've talked to a hundred randomly chosen users, you have most of the info you'd get from talking to 100,000. Depth, not breadth.

  9. 12 minutes ago, KanryDrago said:

    Personally I think what the labs need to do is pick a time period and email a questionaire out to everyone who joined in that period asking why they stopped logging in or stayed logging in.

    I've made a similar comment, except that it needs to be a personal phone call to get real info. Spamming SurveyMonkey links doesn't help much.

    You don't need a huge number of calls. A good exercise for a company is to have each employee make a few such calls. That gives them a better sense of what customers need. Bill Gates used to take Microsoft customer support calls once in a while, to get a feel for what was bothering customers.

  10. On 7/5/2019 at 5:09 PM, Sasy Scarborough said:

    This is along the lines of if you go into Macys and take a picture of an item of clothing and then use all the pictures to make a photo sourced version of the item,, that is ok as the pictures are your own so the zipper, buttons etc all become usable (I think that is correct)

    Exactly how much you can copy in fashion is difficult. This gets you into the area of "trade dress law". Herman Miller has gone to court over the "Eames Chair" and "Aeron Chair" designs. They won on trade dress grounds on the Eames chair, but lost on the Aeron chair. The Aeron chair's features were held to be "functional", which isn't covered by trade dress or design copyright. (This is why there's a third party auto parts industry.) Trade dress, like trademark, is forever, as long as the holder continues to use the design.

    Trade dress has to have "secondary meaning". Recognizable and recognized branding, like a trademark. Wal-Mart had knockoffs of a line of kid's clothes made, and took that case all the way to the Supreme Court and won. Gucci and Forever 21 have been fighting it out over red and green stripes as trade dress, but they settled recently. Right now, In and Out Burger and Puma Shoes (!) are litigating a trade dress issue over shoes with red and white markings and a palm tree, called "Drive Through". Arguing that shoes dilute a burger joint trademark is a stretch. Have to see how that comes out.

    This is an ambiguous area of law right now. Doing blatant knockoffs in SL of current well known clothing brands may not be a good idea without legal backup.

    (I'm not a lawyer, but I hold six US utility patents and three US registered trademarks. I've spent a lot of money on intellectual property lawyers. It was worth it.)


    • Like 2

  11. On 7/4/2019 at 9:30 PM, Zed Avedon said:

    The strength of SL (today & for at least the next half decade) I think is clearly stated in that the decline in users is so      v - e - r - y       v - e - r - y      s - l - o - w .

    "If the ship sinks on an even keel, then damage control has been successful."

    • Like 1
    • Haha 1

  12. 5 minutes ago, CoffeeDujour said:

    LL are well aware and have been looking for a Senior Graphics Engineer for months now.


    With the best will in the world and a laundry list of easy changes, there is nothing much they can do without the having the staff on hand to work on the problems. The best help we can be is to get that link out as far and wide as we can.

    They're not looking very hard. They were not recruiting at the Game Developers' Conference in San Francisco.

  13. 2 hours ago, rhonin Nissondorf said:

    move to target might not work to well with walls.

    Right. I have a whole maze solver written in LSL. It's slow, but it works. Maybe I'll cache solutions in notecards to improve performance.

  14. Both llPursue and llNavigateTo tend to stop short of their goal by 1-2 meters. Pathfinding characters usually will not get close enough to collide with the target. That may be a deliberate feature.

    Both calls also just quit fairly often, for no visible reason. Sometimes you get a path_update event, and sometimes you don't. With a few hundred lines of workaround code, you can sort of make this work.  See JIRA.

    It's not that hard to get zombie-quality movement out of pathfinding. What's hard is getting human avatar quality movement. I sometimes say that my characters display about n00b user level movement.

    • Like 2

  15. 9 hours ago, Alyona Su said:

    If I take a picture of your creation: you own the copyright of that creation, but I own the copyright of that picture.

    If it's a picture of a picture, or a 3D scan of a 3D object, no new copyright is created. See Bridgeman vs Corel and Meshwerks vs Toyota. This stopped museums from claiming copyright on pictures of old public domain paintings. Wikipedia relies heavily on this. The National Portrait Gallery in London once threatened Wikipedia over some old portraits, and then backed down. Much grumbling about this in the museum community, and many false claims of copyright, but since Bridgeman in 1999, I don't think anyone has won a copyright case claiming copyright over a picture of a public domain picture.

    So decorate your SL walls with framed pictures from the old masters. Anything published before January 1, 1924 is now out of copyright in the US. This date ticks up a year each January 1st. (Lots of other stuff published before 1978 is also out of copyright, because before that date you had to register a copyright. It's possible to check the records, and that's sometimes done for Wikipedia. But that's complicated. Pre-1924 is easy.)

    • Like 1

  16. I'm in some animation group, but it gets maybe one posting a month. Let me know what you find.

    I'm not very good at this; I'm still trying to figure out why my walk loop plays smoothly in QAVimator but has a jerk at the end of the loop in world.

  17. I've struggled with that. Steering with arrow keys is very limiting. Most SL bikes oversteer so you can take the turns on racetracks at high speed. You can't keep those things in lane on an SL road. I've built bikes which understeer; you can follow SL roads, but can't take track turns at full speed. Pick one or the other. There are bikes with multiple modes and tuning parameters, for people who like menus. Per policy, I can't link to anything.

    I want joystick input to LSL. You can hook a joystick to SL, and I have one, but it doesn't help vehicle control. Just avatar control. All you get in LSL is arrow key events. The helicopter and aircraft people would really like joysticks.

  18. Trademark issues for models and images gets complicated. It's been litigated by model car companies. Opel and Ducati both lost on that in the EU. BMW sued TurboSquid in the US over a 3D model of a BMW, and withdrew the lawsuit before a decision. But TurboSquid took the model offline anyway.

    Here's an article from a law school professor on the TurboSquid case: "In thinking about trademark infringement, the core analysis focuses on whether the digital file is a good about which there is confusion as to source, sponsorship, or the like. ... if purchasers are not confused about the source of the digital file based on external indicia, courts should channel any other potential claims (if any) to other areas of intellectual property law." Worth a read.

    There's a constant problem with companies claiming far stronger intellectual property rights than they legally have. Few organizations push back. Wikipedia does push back, and several major claimants have backed down.

    The Center for Internet and Society at Stanford has a project to help with pushback against unreasonable claims of infringement.

  19. 2 hours ago, Chellynne Bailey said:

    You can also do what some have already done and come see me about getting Omega Installed.  It seems to work perfectly fine to set up an animesh like you would a mesh body with a couple clothing layers and then just throw it at my head for scripts.   Assuming of course you're the mesh creator and not an end user. (Sorry end users)

    And frankly I'd be VERY disappointed if this hasn't already occurred to the major mesh bod/head makers that they could simplify their models and release "NPC" versions.  They wouldn't even need to come see me since it's already set up.

    Do you know of an Omega-based animesh character that's 30LI or less? I've tried turning avis into animesh, but I get LIs of 80-130 before adding clothing. I have some based on a body from uno.blokke that come in at 29-30 LI with hair and mostly system clothing. That model has one layer, the skin.

    I'm working on behavior scripting, making animesh characters behave as effective NPCs that move around and react to people in the world. I'd much rather that others deal with bodies and clothing so I can focus on behavior.

    Who should I be talking to?

  20. 1 minute ago, CheriColette said:

    My concern (and I have sent message to LL before concerning this) is that there is NOT a separate password to access the financial transactions in SL. I worry about the possibility of someone breaking into my account and having access to my rl bank/paypal to move money into SL and steal it.

    With the terms of service as written, you have no effective recourse if that happens.

    We've seen this in other areas. Notably "Bitcoin exchanges", which tended to have terms like Tilia is proposing. They were regularly "hacked", in many cases probably by insiders, and didn't take responsibility for loss of customer funds. This was enough of a problem that most of the remaining Bitcoin exchanges had to accept some regulation.

    Contracts for financial services that disclaim all responsibility are usually associated with bottom-feeder companies.

    • Like 7
    • Thanks 2

  21. 4 minutes ago, Fionalein said:

    Er wait? Does that mean there is no guarantee to be able to process credit anymore?

    That seems to be what it says. Again, if you get significant revenue for LL, your lawyer needs to read that.

    These are terms appropriate to a business where almost nobody ever takes money out. Like ITunes. They're all wrong for a pseudo-bank or money transmitter.

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