Linden Lab says “someday / maybe” to mesh parametric deformer

Linden Lab has gone to a lot of effort to provide mesh. Some of it perhaps hasn’t been handled too well at times (given the problems around Prim Equivalency, the weakness of the uploader, etc., would it really have hurt to delay the launch by a month so that some of these issues could be address as they are being already in the latest Mesh Project Viewer?).

One of the biggest issues around mesh is clothing. Simply put, the way mesh works means that options to resize worn items are limited. In some cases very limited. Even with alpha layers, it can be a case of modifying your shape to fit the item – and there are times when alpha layers aren’t suitable…leading to more and bigger issues.

Maxwell Graf suggested a means of handling the problem – a parametric deformer. He’s blogged about the idea – so have many others. He’s raised a JIRA on the subject and received the support of just about every mesh clothing designer in SL. It’s generated a lot of discussion.

It appears to have been universally ignored by Linden Lab.

Charlar Linden has commented elsewhere on the subject and suggested there might be alternative methods to employ, etc., but the lack of open commentary is confusing.

And now the JIRA has been downgraded to someday / maybe – a stance that doesn’t sound too hopeful.

Theories have been put forward as to why the JIRA has been downgraded – some have cited the recent code breakages for attachments and PRIM_PHYSICS – the suggestion that these and other issues have higher priorities, et. But such explanations really don’t make sense: this issues are under the control of a different team at LL.

Are the Lab generating an alternative? Do they simply think this is a non-issue? It’s impossible to say.

Only one this is clear right now – the stubborn silence evidenced from linden Lab isn’t winning them any favours. We’ve long been promised better and more informed communications (wasn’t that, after all what all the hoo-ha with the Lithium “Community Communications Platform”?) Rod Humble himself has promised (via Twitter) that the silence would end some time back – yet the fact remains that outward communications from Linden Lab are sporadic and frequently noteworthy for telling us what we’ve already discovered for ourselves.

Of course, one doesn’t expect LL to inform users of absolutely everything that is going on – but given the ballyhoo around mesh, the concern over limitations on mesh clothing / body attachments (which otherwise have the potential to be a huge market in-world), it would really help matters if someone, somewhere inside Battery Street actually stood up and said something on the matter of what on Earth is going on.

Rodvik? Over to you.

In the meantime, if you are cuious about mesh clothing – limitations and all – I recommend a read of Couldbe Yue’s excellent overview and guide.

4 thoughts on “Linden Lab says “someday / maybe” to mesh parametric deformer

  1. You seem to be getting a bit soft in your old age, Inara. Linden Lab promised Mesh would be ready for SLCC…it was…just. That no reasonable means of editing Mesh objects when used as clothing just wasn’t seen as important. “The “shiny” is out on the Grid Rah Rah”. Linden Lab delivered as promised! Except of course it didn’t. Mesh enabled viewers are clunky, crashy and bug-ridden. I wonder why? Answer: They were rushed our way before they were ready.

    Maybe after the appalling debacles around SVC-7238 (which is by no means fixed for creators yet BTW), SVC-7305, and some very obvious disidence with the Linden Lab camp, attitudes might change…personally I’m not hopeful. Three Lindens who now know how to communcicate and show their worth to SL users does not constitute a wholesale epiphany for LL. The fact of the matter is that groups within the Lab operate without any meaningful communication either within or without LL. That is not about to change, IMHO.


    1. I may be a little easier on the poking – but the poking is there, and the foot-stomping will be present should it be required. Wholesale negatively can be self-defeating however. What’s the point of trying to coax LL back into more open engagement if we leave them feeling as if they’re going to get a royal slapping whenever they stick there heads up above ground?

      Doesn’t mean I won’t be critical, however :).

      Not sure it is fair to say mesh was promised for SLCC. The closest LL came to specifying dates was to say, “In July, we will enable a limited set of regions to use Mesh and will it roll out, in a phased approach, throughout August. By the end of August, everyone in Second Life will be able to import Mesh objects. Of course, if we run into unforeseen issues or bugs, then this time line will need to shift.”. SLCC was mid-August, so fairer to say that roll-out was still in progress, and the caveat of slippage still applied.

      That said, I do believe LL bungled mesh badly. Not just technically (although the elements of fail are clear in this) or due to the near balls-up over prematurely announcing mesh could be sold on SLM (when mesh wasn’t even on the Main grid. No, the bungling went right up to (once again) the level of communication LL provided around mesh – which was, and remains, minimal.

      Certainly, I agree that in terms of communications, there has been no epiphany; I’ve written extensively on LL’s repeated failure to grasp the need for constructive, outward communication on a number of occasions and actually hate retreading only territory – but maybe it is time to do so. Elsewhere in the company, however, I’m not so sure there haven’t been a series of mini-epiphanies. There are clear signs they are attempting to move in the right direction in key areas – and this should be encouraged and reported as much as when they get things wrong.

      As to the JIRAS – wish I had time to keep an eye on everything; but sadly, that’s not possible.


  2. BTW, on reflection that looks a bit harsh on you, Inara, please don’t be offended, I only meant that I feel you are sometimes a bit soft on “The Lab”!.


  3. Been designing clothes in SL since 2005. I’m really not surprised that LL sees mesh clothing issues as something to backburner. They have consistently put the SL fashion industry in the back of the line. Non issue? *shrugs* They are just continuing along as they always have been. When something new they want to implement impacts clothing creation, they throw in a token “ok we’ve covered that area” and move on.

    Example: Whatshisname Linden borked up the appearance mode clothing creation process and Every_Single_Day I make an outfit I have grind my teeth and have deal with it. Will it ever get fixed? I doubt it. Drives me nuts!

    I was wondering if they ever WERE going to listen to the designers on this (mesh) (wasn’t holding my breath tho) and it looks like they aren’t. What are we chopped liver? Are avatars running around the grid naked? Food. Clothing. Shelter. The basic necesseties of RL. Clothing/Commerce/Retail/Fashion = HUGE part of SL, but yet gets little to no support from LL. Again, not surprised to see them (not) making these moves.

    Most of us will continue on as we have been. Figuring out work arounds or just ditching the new shiny altogether if it ends of not working out as a clothing design option. Sad tho. Especially when it looks like a way to solve the mesh clothing problems is being handed to LL on a platter.


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