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animats

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Posts posted by animats


  1. This keeps happening to large French sims built by cultural organizations. There was a full-scale Versailles in SL at one time, but the tier was too much. So it's gone.

    Can Hangars Liquides be saved into an Open Simulator sim? It's a shame to lose this.

    I've been there many times. I've explored, taken friends there, and even brought in a motorcycle to drive around the ramps.

    • Like 5

  2. On 6/30/2019 at 7:22 AM, Leora Jacobus said:

    I put up a kitchen but all the cupboards are empty. If I fill them with china, glasses and food that will take LOTS of LI.

    I thought about one prim textured with a photo of kitchenstuff  ;) - But I cannot find something like that on the MP

    How do you fill your cupboards?

    I was once toying with the idea of a cupboard where, with the doors closed, you saw a picture. When you opened the doors, the items were actually rezzed as 3D objects. Close the doors, and the objects are deleted and the front of the cabinet shows a picture again.

    The intended use was a store or a library, but it could work for a kitchen.

    One of those farming systems where you work to make ingredients, which you then prepare and cook, could work that way. You and others could see your inventory and the results of all the hard work.


  3. The Linden Labs XML data is partially broken. It looks like this:

    <stats>
      <status>ONLINE</status>
      <signups>59,724,187</signups>
      <logged_in_last_60>Loading...</logged_in_last_60>
      <transactions>Loading...</transactions>
      <inworld>31,498</inworld>
    </stats>

    That's where web sites get SL concurrency. Yes, it actually returns "Loading..." in the XML data. I don't think that the transaction data has been released for years. SL used to issue statements about numbers for the SL economy. Then they started dropping.

    • Like 1

  4. Blockstack just got SEC approval for their token.Tilia should go for SEC approval for Linden dollars, and accept that they run a financial institution. The Tilia terms try to weasel out of LL's financial obligations. The honest route is to acknowledge that Linden Dollars are a store of value, and get all the necessary approvals. That's what Facebook is doing for their token. YouNow has a SEC-approved token.

    The way this is going, unregistered tokens and sleazy contract terms are more likely to be a problem for than getting SEC registration as a security. The regulatory environment for "tokens" just changed in a big way.

    • Thanks 1
    • Haha 1

  5. There are a few constraints in SL.

    The parcel system encourages horizontal separation. Stacked apartments exist in SL but are not very popular. If you get too many avis too close together, the system starts to choke. Prim allowances become low. Voice and chat have too much range. Bellisseria has about the right density. The Tuscan sims above are about at that density. Bellagio is much denser, too dense for SL. Dense cities exist in SL, but the buildings are mostly shells. (There's an impressive modern Japanese city in SL, but the tall buildings have little inside above the first floor.)

    One of the reasons Bellisseria is a success is that there's buffer space between all parcels. That was a great idea, and well-executed.

    Another win in Bellisseria is a usable road system. That provides a sense of real world space, even if you don't drive much. Visit the old Linden Homes continents, which don't have a useful road system, and you will feel lost quickly.

    saint-leon-sur-vezere-vue-du-ciel.jpg

    French farm village. A tourist destination. That would work in SL. With about half as many buildings.

    • Like 5

  6. Realize how tiny the SL dev team is. If you go to Server User Group, you'll meet them all eventually. Simon Linden seems to be the only one who works on hard server side problems, and he's way overworked. UE4 probably has 20x as many developers.

    OpenSim is down to one developer, the last time I checked.

    When LL gives up on the Sansar resource drain and assigns the 30 or so  people over there to working on SL, SL might improve. We, as SL customers, pay for that debacle.


  7. 25 minutes ago, Sunbleached said:

    @animats

    Hello! Thanks very much for your hint! Yes, it happens sometimes. Could you give a little more detail on what to do, please? (camera and position both)

    In the "changed" event, when you get a CHANGED_REGION event, the script and its vehicle have completed the region crossing. The avatars and attachments may still be catching up. So on a CHANGED_REGION, set a flag like "region_cross_incomplete".

    In your timer or control event, which is executed frequently, check that flag. If it's set, call llGetPermissions and see if you have all your permissions. If not, don't do anything; the avatars are still crossing the region boundary. If you have all your perms, reset the camera, sounds, and animations, the same way you got them started at startup, and clear the flag. This fixes the "camera lost position" and "avatar animation lost" problems. It's a SL bug that you need to do this.

    Robust region crossing requires active management in vehicle scripts. I've written about this before. Other things to handle include:

    • Slowing down to avoid double region crossings.
    • Avatar is slow catching up with the vehicle. This is what the perms issue above comes from. (Sometimes the avatar never catches up at all, and the region crossing fails. Sometimes the avatar gets there first, and appears in a bogus position because it is a child prim, with coords relative to the vehicle. This either rubber-bands back quickly when the vehicle shows up, or leads to a failed region crossing.)
    • Dealing with the "sinking" problem when off the edge of the sim but the region crossing hasn't started yet. (Region crossings start when you're about 1m beyond the sim edge. "Sinking" comes from loss of support from the region being left, before the region being entered has taken over.)
    • Correcting unwanted changes in direction and speed when crossing a sim boundary. Easy to fix; force the last good velocity and omega vectors from the old sim using llSetVelocity and llSetAngularVelocity.

    Most of the better vehicles in SL do some of these things. I seem to be the only builder who writes it up. I've written about this before.

    This is reasonably hard to get right. I had to drive about 1000km in SL to debug.

    • Thanks 1

  8. Ray tracing for worlds as complex as SL's is a ways off. But there is a way.

    The whole graphics system of SL needs modernization, but that's a huge job. One new hire isn't enough. The next new hire will probably be stuck trying to make the viewer use Vulkan (Microsoft) and Metal (Apple). Until recently, you could just use OpenGL on all platforms, but that's changing. Vulkan seems to be the future. There's Vulkan for Windows, for Mac (using an open source adapter called "MoltenVK", if that works) and for Linux.

    This is a job I would consider "hard", "not fun", and "write once, debug everywhere". This is far harder than EEP, and look what a mess that turned into.

    Maybe, if we're really lucky, we get physically based rendering out of this. Principled BSDF, which is a Disney/Pixar standard and which Blender understands, is probably the way to go. It's more texture layers. Right now, SL has diffuse, emissive, specular, and normal ("bump") textures. This adds more textures to the mix:

    render_cycles_nodes_types_shaders_princi

    Putting all those layers together is something modern GPUs can do fast. Much faster than ray tracing. The main use cases are for skin, for which the "subsurface" layer contributes to realism, and automotive paint jobs, where "clearcoat" and "clearcoat roughness" matter. Most of the time, you don't use all those textures at the same time.

    From an SL perspective, it's almost all viewer side. The server just has to tell the viewer the UUIDs and URLs from which to get the texture images, and some numbers associated with how they're assembled. There's no wiring up of shader plumbing, as with Cycles render. It's close to the way SL represents materials now. So LL might be able to pull this off.

    At lower graphics settings, the viewer would skip some of the more subtle layers. Think of this as "Advanced Lighting Model, Boss Level". You'll need a good GPU. Time moves on and GPUs get better and cheaper.

    What do the graphics people think of this? It's worrisome that, with all the tutorials on "Principled BSDF" for Blender, very few show photorealistic humans. Lots of shiny things, garden gnomes, etc., but not many humans.

     

    image.jpeg

    image.jpeg

    image.jpeg


  9. 12 minutes ago, MaxSilverDragon said:

    all these worlds my wind up being bigger than second life but they will not have the freedom of it

    I agree. You can't host adult content on Spatial OS, for example, because it has to run on Google servers.

    Freedom is so last-cen. It's all walled gardens now, where the service has all the rights and power and the peons do what they're told. The New York Times has an editorial on this today.


  10. Advanced hint:

    If you have something that makes a continuous sound that shouldn't sound repetitive, like an engine sound, there's a useful trick. Get a long recording of the desired sound and cut out four samples of 10 seconds or less which, played one after another, sound good in any order. Play them randomly, with the constraint that the same sound is never played twice in a row.

    Why four? Seems to be a limit in human auditory memory. Two samples played alternately sound repetitive. Three samples played randomly sound somewhat repetitive. Four sound unique. Drum machines use this trick.

    I have a squeaky wind vane that does this.

    • Thanks 1

  11. 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

  12. 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.


  13. 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.

     


  14. 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.


  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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.


  18. 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.


  19. 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.


  20. 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 1
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