RFL of SL 2013 Kick-off and Fashion for Life

2013_RFL_LogoThis weekend sees the official kick-off for Relay for Life of SL with a special celebratory event taking place on Saturday March 9th, starting at 10:00 SLT.

The theme for 2013 is “100 years of hope”, and marks the centenary of the American Cancer Society. As such, this year is being seen as an opportunity to more closely align RFL’s digital world efforts (which now also include InWorldz as well as Second Life) with the ACS.

The kick-off celebration will take place on four dedicated Kick-off regions adjoining the American Cancer Society region, which feature a central stage and the Cafe du Kick-off, set within a park and surrounded by a parade-like walk and gaily coloured houses.

RFL of SL Kick-off stage area
RFL of SL Kick-off stage area

The event will comprise the official opening of the RFL of SL 2013 season, complete with a number of special guest speakers. entertainment will be provided throughout the day following the opening ceremony, with  DJs on-hand to spin the tunes at the central stage area throughout the afternoon, and a special dance troupe performance during the course of the festivities.

There are around 113 teams registered for this year’s season, with over 2,000 avatars listed on the team rosters – however, there is still time for people to put together a team of their own and join in the fundraising activities; teams can still be registered via the RFL of SL website.

The RFL of SL kick-off regions
The RFL of SL kick-off regions

All RFL of SL teams are warmly invited by the event organisers to attend the kick-off and mix with one another. SLurls for the event are:

Continue reading “RFL of SL 2013 Kick-off and Fashion for Life”

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SL project updates: week 10 (2): server, SSB, materials and SSAO

Server Deployments Update

All of the deployments planned for week 10 went ahead as scheduled. While further issues related to region crossings have been reported, these are not thought to be related to any of the new code deployments for this week (see below for more).

The one issue that has been noted with the deployments is for VWR-786, which formed a part of the Magnum deployment.

This was supposed to ensure that if a friend does not have ‘See my online status’ permission, they will now see “User is not online ..” message following IM or inventory offer. However, the result has also been that if you IM a non-friend, the server always returns the “User is not online” message. The short-term solution for this is to remove the change from week 11’s releases in the interest of getting the other fixes (BUG-1612 and SVC-8019) across the grid.

The Lab is particularly keen to see SVC-8019 deployed to the entire grid, as this should fix issues of regions not handshaking correctly with one another following a rolling restart. The cause of this is believed to be due to regions looking at stale cached copies of a neighbouring regions’ status. With the update, regions grab more up-to-date copies of the status of their neighbours.

Server-side Baking: Further Pile-on / Load Test

Nyx Linden has announced that there will be a further SSB pile-on / load test on Thursday March 14th, following-on, as with the last test, from the Server Beta meeting on Aditi. The test is liable to be in much the same format as the first test, of which Nyx notes, “It gave us a lot of information and we’ve been working on a number of fixes, both to Aditi inventory, as well as viewer and back-end changes. Given this, the reason for the next test, in Nyx’s words, is because, “We’d like to see how much progress we’re making.”

The first SSB pile-on / load test (image courtesy of Latif Khalifa
The first SSB pile-on / load test (image courtesy of Latif Khalifa

Those wishing to participate will be required to be using the latest version of the Sunshine project viewer (3.4.5.271419), and are advised to attend the Server Beta meeting on Aditi ahead of time (the meeting commences at 15:00 SLT on Thursdays). Addressing those who participated in the first test, Nyx added, “If you had trouble at the last pile-on with outfit switching, feel free to test out the new build in advance – you should be able to comment on the JIRA tasks you filed, or email me directly with any issues.”

Materials Processing

Following-on from his replies to my question at the open-source dev meeting on Monday March 4th, Oz Linden talked some more on the status of the materials processing project at the Wednesday meeting on March 6th, “There’s one build floater bug and one crash that need fixing,” he said in kicking-off the discussion on materials, “I might even be willing to let it out without the crash fix (though it’s pretty bad).”

However, before everyone starts shouting, “Yes, yes!” :), even the release of a crashy version of the project viewer requires the “other” problem to be fixed. This appears to be related to a texture list getting corrupted, and which can manifest in a number of ways, including:

  • The normal map picker reverts to displaying the diffuse (texture) map after a normal map has been selected and the picker closed, with the normal map failing to render on the object / face it has been applied to
  • If deferred rendering is turned off, anything using materials appears black
  • If bump mapping is disabled, objects using materials appear to randomly adopt nearby textures (including skin textures) which can change as the camera is rotated / moved.
Normal map application issue: a normal map is selected and apllied to an object face (l); however, on re-opening the build floater, the map appears to have reverted to the diffuse map (r), and the object face does not render as expected
Normal map application issue: a normal map is selected and applied to an object face (l); however, on re-opening the build floater, the map appears to have reverted to the diffuse map (r), and the object face does not render as expected

Continue reading “SL project updates: week 10 (2): server, SSB, materials and SSAO”