Server Deployments – Week 17
The scheduled server channel deployments took place as planned this week.
The SLS Main channel
As previously reported, this received the update package deployed to the three Release Candidate channels in week 16, primarily comprising the new server-side LSL Animation Override capabilities, complete with a fix for BUG 2164 – release notes
BlueSteel and LeTigre
Both of these channels received the first part of a new experience tools project – referred to as the “Experience Keys project” in the release notes.
Interestingly, the release notes refer to BlueSteel and LeTigre receiving server release 13.04.19.274370; however, the viewer reports both of the channels running 13.04.05.273550. I contacted Maestro on this, who replied, “There was an error during the roll, so a slightly older version (which doesn’t include the changes from this week’s main channel update) was deployed.”
Not too much is known about the new Experience Keys project, although the emphasis on “new” indicates this is more than just a deployment of the outstanding permissions system for the current advanced creation / experience tools, and speculation has been running high. At the Simulator User Group meeting on Tuesday 23rd April, Simon Linden indicated he was unsure as to what he could / could not say on the matter (particularly as it appeared the documentation was still being written-up).
Commenting on the Bluesteel / LeTigre deployment at the Server Beta meeting on Thursday 25th April, Maestro Linden was also somewhat circumspect on the matter, commenting, “The team doesn’t want to announce the features yet, so I can’t give many details … some other parts need to be released for the new features to be usable. So ideally, nothing visible should change there.”
The reference to “some other parts” which need to be released for these new features may include a viewer update. Whether such an update will appear ahead of or behind the materials capabilities (still currently in a project viewer) is unclear at this point in time.
Magnum received additional LSL support for new HTTP contents types, as document in the release notes. It also received a change to how certain message types are handled by the server, which Maestro described thus:
There’s a change to make the server smarter about how it throttles certain messaging types to prevent certain types of ‘DoS’ attacks, where a ‘bad’ object could prevent your avatar from getting llDialog notifications from other objects. All objects owned by UserA share the same throttle for sending llDialog() messages to UserB, but objects owned by anybody else would have a separate throttle pool.
This should hopefully reduce the incidences of iiDialog being used in spamming attacks which can result in the viewer either being severely slowed down or crashing altogether.
The beta viewer gained a further release (188.8.131.524558) which reached public availability on April 24th, containing further CHUI and SSB/A dixes and updates, as detailed in the release notes. The development viewer also received a further release (184.108.40.206469) which also gained public availability on April 24th.
Baker Linden has started working on an update to the code for managing groups which will allow group owners / moderators to ban users who create problems (e.g. those who spam groups, people who are persistently abusive in group chat, etc.). This work is in response to JIRA VWR-29337. In my last report on this, Baker has written-up the documentation for the work and was having some other Lindens cast an eye over it.
Attending the Server Beta meeting on Thursday April 25th, Baker provided an update on his activities. “I’m still working on group bans, but I decided to fix a couple small bugs first. They both relate to searching people using the choose resident floater. They’re in the system where I’ll be adding group ban stuff, and now that I can test the changes, I can get them pushed to an RC. However, he did go on to say, “It’s going to be a while before Group ban stuff is ready.”
Second Life and Oculus Rift
There has been considerable interest in the Oculus Rift headset and its potential for use within Second Life, as reported back in week 14 and more recently. Jon Brouchoud in particular blogged on why SL would be a “killer app” for the headset, and a video I featured back in week 16 has also appeared on numerous SL blogs (hardly surprising, given it has pretty much gone viral where the Oculus Rift is concerned 🙂 ).
On Wednesday April 24th, Hamlet Au covered the fact that the Lab is already looking to integrate the headset into Second Life, and have given official confirmation, with company spokesman Peter Gray (Pete Linden) quoted as saying, “We plan to strongly support Oculus Rift. That means code, client, and server-side, to make the Oculus Rift experience excellent in Second Life.”