Penny Patton

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About Penny Patton

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  1. Better building

    I've been using experience based teleporters in all my builds for years, you'd be amazed at how seamless it feels to walk into the open door of a building and into a skybox using this method. I'm not going to pretend it's exactly as seamless as actually having a fully constructed exterior and interior, but it's not as jarring as some people seem to think it might be, and it's well worth it for the performance benefits. Yeah, you need to have a premium account to set up your own experience, but LL is planning to introduce "Grid Wide Experiences" which I assume means someone would be able to make a door teleporter using an experience and everyone who purchases said door will be able to use it, without having to set up their own experience. Another trick to increase performance in your builds is to use masked alpha wherever possible instead of blended alpha. Blended alpha eats up a lot more processing power to render, and it comes with glitches we're all familiar with. Masked alpha is easier to render and has none of said glitches. Plants tend to be the big framerate killer. Plants and trees. Change those from blended to masked and you should see a noticeable FPS bump.
  2. Things are bleary.

    How much texture memory are your avatar and those HUDs you do keep attached using?
  3. Jira vote on 24 hour days or 35 or 3 or...

    I think there's potentially some big problems with LL's "baked on mesh" plan but unless LL really dropped the ball with animesh, that should be huge in terms of making SL more engaging. Did they do something stupid with animesh? Please don't tell me they're keeping the insanely high land impact costs.
  4. Jira vote on 24 hour days or 35 or 3 or...

    I doubt EEP will be another year or two. The last time I dropped by the viewer dev meetings, they said a test viewer would be out within 2-3 months. That was maybe two months ago. Unless the test viewer reveals a major hiccup, I expect the feature will be rolled out to everyone soon after.
  5. Why should I pay for a demo?

    It's not a service. They're trying to convince you to buy the item and you would be a fool to buy it without checking out a demo first. You might as well start paying shops to advertise to you.
  6. Jira vote on 24 hour days or 35 or 3 or...

    I can confirm that at a Viewer Development meeting (back in January or February I believe) one of the Linden's working on EEP confirmed it would include scripting features. They did not go into detail on just now involved the scripting features would be but the fact that they had already planned for it to be a feature at all makes me hopeful.
  7. Oculus Go - what's the LL strategy?

    A part of SL's performance woes comes from the fact that so many SL users know a little bit about how game rendering works. Ever hear the saying "a little bit of knowledge can be a dangerous thing"? If you only know a little bit about a topic, you can easily jump to the wrong conclusions. Yes, videogames have features like pre-rendered light maps and object culling that simply aren't feasible in SL, but this is not the whole reason performance in SL is so bad. The fact that so many game optimization tools are not feasible in a dynamic environment like Second Life only makes optimization MORE important. This is why you DO see startling improvements to rez times and framerates in Second Life when visiting sims designed by people who understand that importance.
  8. Oh! Firestorm has added that feature in! Awesome. Not sure why they show "TMem" and "VRAM" as separate things, but it's good that the info is there. But yeah, like others have pointed out in the thread, the lack of optimization has created a huge, and entirely avoidable, hurdle in terms of SL's ability to draw in and retain users. So hopefully attention towards this issue continues to gather steam and the Lindens themselves take steps to reign it in. I'm sure there will be much gnashing of teeth among users and content creators alike, but the end result would be a more successful, better looking SL with less lag and higher framerates all around. And who doesn't want that?
  9. Someone did release a version of Firestorm with memory inspecting tools, and it even included a feature to jelly doll excessively memory heavy avatars, but I'm not sure where to find that viewer right now. It was used as a demonstration for the tools when they were submitted to Firestorm devs and LL.
  10. Yeah, that's really the big problem, even if you're aware of the problem, SL currently provides you few options for telling what content is optimized, and what will kill your FPS all by itself. If you're a bit more technically savvy, and can preview the item inworld before buying, you can get a better sense of how optimized content is (there's a hotkey that tells you the number of textures on an item, but I forget what it is and whether or not it also tells you the size of the textures). LL has talked about adding features to allow you to inspect an object and instantly see it's texture memory use (which is much more valuable than just the number of textures), but who knows how long before those features will actually materialize. That said, as difficult as it is, it does matter if you value framerates. I will more frequently shop at places where I know I can find optimized content, and avoid places where I know the content will hurt my framerates. But it takes a lot of trial and error, and if you don't know what to look for to begin with, it can be nearly impossible to avoid laggy content. Once the tools arrive to help make it easier to avoid laggy, unoptimized content then you should definitely use them. In the meantime, I think the most important thing is that more people be aware of the issue, and talk about it. Maybe as more people learn how unoptimized content hurts their experience, more content creators will take the initiative to optimize their own work.
  11. Do you use the In-World Web Browser?

    No. I use external browsers because the in-client browser runs so slowly. I'll try and load a page in SL, get impatient, copy the url to Chrome then watch side by side. Chrome always beats the in-client viewer by a mile.
  12. People on low end hardware, even integrated graphics, do experience better performance in optimized areas. How do I know? When I travel, I use my laptop, with integrated graphics, to pop into SL now and then. I don't get great performance, but it's good enough for me to actually use SL. This isn't a hypothetical, I've been doing it for years and it works. This happens because content creators gut the lower LOD of their content as an exploit to get lower land impact. They tell their customers to essentially disable LOD to view this content properly. It's insane. Do you know why people get a performance hit with mesh? It's not because of the mesh, it's because since mesh was introduced, texture use on individual models has gone nuts. People are loading individual hairpieces with twenty 1024x1024 textures. Drinking cups with five. Houses with literally dozens, then you lump materials in on top of that. High end hardware chokes on this stuff. Low end hardware doesn't stand a chance. They can enable local lighting without such a performance hit when in an optimized area. I know this from experience. Most of the popular mesh bodies/heads/etcetera are performance killers because LL failed to crack down on this problem before it became a problem. If they were optimized they wouldn't kill the client.
  13. That is back when SL was new, the hype was huge, and people were fully expecting it to improve exponentially along with its userbase. When the improvements failed to materialize the hype fizzled out and that massive growth turned into a massive decline from which SL has never recovered. Remember, SL's popularity and userbase peaked in 2008-2009 and most of that growth took place over the course of like 2 years when the hype machine was in full effect. This part is true. Except, look at it this way, is it better business sense to rest on your laurels hoping the handful of die-hards stick around? Or to figure out what's driven everyone else away so you can fix those problems and grow your business? This part is not so true. I've designed multiple sims in Second Life where people have been able to enjoy less lag, higher framerates, and even been able to bump up their graphics settings to higher levels than they can use anywhere else on the grid. And they're good looking sims at that. Get content creators to recognize the importance of optimization (or force them to optimize, if you have to, by chaining lack of optimization to higher land impact costs and hard resource caps) and you will improve the experience for everyone, whether they're on an expensive, bleeding edge gaming machine, or a potatoe that also powers a light bulb for your science fair presentation. On top of that, there are many ways to improve Second Life that aren't related to graphics or performance. Linden Lab needs to make SL easier to use, more fun, and more engaging. Then you will see an increase in users logging in.
  14. They also won't necessarily tell you why someone stayed or left. and depending on how you look at statistics, you could end up making false correlations. Remember, it's a statistical fact that ozone depletion has increased with the decrease in the number of pirates on the high seas. Arrrrrrrrr! Thar be skin cancer! That's why I say a lot of LL's attempts to increase retention have been sabotaged by the Lab's inability to recognize the more fundamental problems with their product. Fix those problems and you increase retention, AND THEN other means of bolstering retention, such as community gateways, can be more effective. The good news is that it sounds like the current team over at LL agrees and is finally starting to look into fixing some of the more fundamental issues. Granted, it still remains to be seen if they can deliver the goods, but they're saying a lot of the right things lately.
  15. Animesh could be a huge first step, assuming land impact costs for animesh end up reasonable. But still, SL really should have easy to set up, scriptable, interactive NPCs that can have scripted routines. Like an NPC that lives in a small house, sleeps from 2am until 8am, goes to work as an NPC at a small club from 9am until noon, takes an hour break to go sit at a nearby cafe eating a delicious looking meal, comes back at 1pm and works until 5pm when they start mingling with the crowd for a few hours before leaving to head to the waterfront where they throw breadcrumbs to some NPC ducks, then they head home for an hour then crawl into bed. If you try to talk to interact with them at any point of the day, the response you get will be different depending on the time of day. Try to talk to them at the club and they'll offer you drinks, maybe give you a free glow stick, or tell you about some of the other hot spots around town. Try to interact with them on break and they'll say, "Hey man, I'm on break!" Try to talk to them while they're down at the waterfront and they'll open a secret door for you leading to a magical realm with a hidden treasure. Try to talk to them when they're in bed and they'll kick you out of their house. It should be easy to set these up, too. At least for simple tasks. Scripting will, of course, open up more possibilities, but even if you don't know how to script you should be able to set up a basic NPC with some simple interactions and a simple routine schedule and path. Just like you should be able to create a simple chair, teleporter, doorway, etcetera without having to know how to script.