2015 viewer release summaries: week 34

Updates for the week ending: Sunday, August 23rd

This summary is published every Monday, and is a list of SL viewer / client releases (official and TPV) made during the previous week. When reading it, please note:

  • It is based on my Current Viewer Releases Page, a list of all Second Life viewers and clients that are in popular use (and of which I am aware), and which are recognised as adhering to the TPV Policy. This page includes comprehensive links to download pages, blog notes, release notes, etc., as well as links to any / all reviews of specific viewers / clients made within this blog
  • By its nature, this summary presented here will always be in arrears, please refer to the Current Viewer Release Page for more up-to-date information.

Official LL Viewers

  • Current Release version: 3.8.3.304115 August 18th – no change –  download page, release notes
  • Release channel cohorts (See my notes on manually installing RC viewer versions if you wish to install any release candidate(s) yourself):
    • No updates.
  • Project viewers:
    • Quick Graphics project viewer version 3.8.4.304433, release on August 21st – provides the new Avatar complexity options to assist with viewer performance when rendering avatars in busy locations, and the new graphics preset capabilities for setting, saving and restoring graphic settings for use in difference environments / circumstances (download and release notes).

LL Viewer Resources

Third-party Viewers

V3-style

  • Alchemy updated to version 3.8.2.36473 on August 20th – core updates: OpenSimulator Support, Build tools improvements (incl. VS 2015 for Windows), parity with LL 3.8.2 code base; support for up to 2 gigabytes of texture memory – release notes.
  • Firestorm updated to version 4.7.3.47323 on August 18th – core updates: parity with LL 3.8.2 code base; VVM support; attachment fixes; Experiences support; Layer Limits and much more – release notesreview notes.
  • UKanDo updated to version 3.8.3.28132 on August 18th – core changes: parity wit the LL 3.8.3.304115 and RLV 2.9.12 releases  – release notes

V1-style

  • No updates.

Mobile / Other Clients

  • No updates.

Additional TPV Resources

Related Links

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Second Life projects update: 34/2: TPV Developer meeting

Strings
Strings, Cica Ghost – blog post

The following notes are primarily taken from the TPV Developer (TPVD) meeting held on Friday, August 21st, 2015. A video of the meeting is included at the end of this report, with any time stamps in the following text referring to it. My thanks as always to North for the recording and providing it for embedding.

Server Deployments – Recap

There was a single server maintenance package deployed during the week, which was delivered to the BlueSteel RC on Wednesday, August 19th. This was intended to provide fixes for  items and folders getting mixed up. however, this was subsequently rolled back on Thursday, August 20th.

Viewer Updates

Project Quick Graphics

On Friday, August 21st, the long-awaited Avatar Complexity / graphics presets viewer arrived in project viewer form. Version 3.8.4.304433 is being referred to as “Project Quick Graphics”. I provided an initial look at this viewer in pre-release, but I now have an updated overview available.

The viewer includes the means to create and save sets of graphics presets which can be quickly loaded according to need / circumstance to help maintain a viewer's performance
The Quick Graphics project viewer offers the means to create your own sets of graphics presets you can quickly swap between according to needs / circumstance. It also include the new Avatar Complexity capabilities – see my overview for more information

As noted in that report, the Avatar Complexity default you get is based on the rendering performance of your system. however, this might be adjusted by the Lab during the time the viewer is available at a project status.

Other Viewers

[02:00] An update to the Oculus Rift viewer is still anticipated, although this has tended to be pre-empted by other things, and may be again.

There have been no other viewer updates since the promotion of the Maintenance viewer on Tuesday, August 18th, as reported in part 1 of this update.

[23:35] The will, at some point be an experimental viewer build, which should lead to a project viewer in the future, using the FMod Studio for audio.

HTTP Work

[08;00] Rider Linden has been engaged in further HTTP work, specifically aimed at the viewer with the intent of reducing the paradigms for how HTTP should be used within the viewer from 4 to a single, consistent approach. He has most recently been engaged in aligning recent HTTP updates made to the viewer with his own work.

[19:36] The Lab is still looking for move more asset types from delivery using UDP via the simulator to delivery using HTTP via the CDN, but this is pending the completion of Rider’s HTTP work. Overall, the view is that there is no reason why any asset that goes to the viewer should be cached and delivered via the CDN.

Inventory Improvements

[10:48] The lab is continuing to investigate causes of inventory issues with the intention of reducing them. In particular, they are considering server-side enforcement  on how inventory should be organised.

The idea is not to prevent how people organise their inventories, but rather to ensure things that simply should not happen under normal use, but which have been shown to lead to inventory losses when they do occur, are no longer possible. Examples of this include a user’s inventory gaining more than one Trash folder, or the system allowing folders to be created without an associated system ID, and so on. The most effective way of achieving this is through server-side rules enforcement.

While the Lab is not ready to start implementing such changes as yet – they are still investigating, as noted – these changes are part of an overall goal to migrate all inventory operations over to AIS (Advanced Inventory System) and then to deprecate older inventory code – all of which will involve changes to the viewer. This means that as this work progresses, viewers not supporting the AIS v3 code will no longer be able to perform inventory operations.

Server-side Validation

[16:40] Commenting on issue of validation of uploads in general, Oz Linden said:

I would like to add validation for more things that get uploaded [but] of course there’s always the backward compatibility problem, people complaining that once upon a time I could upload this, and now I can’t…

However, he went on to say that there is a case for not limiting validation of uploads purely to the viewer, as is currently the case:

There’s nothing wrong with also checking in the viewer, but if it’s not the model we expect to be true of the world, there should be validation on the server because we have a lot of third-party viewers … So we really can’t count on the viewer to get it right, there are too many of them. And if nothing else, some things that can cause crashes that might be deliberately put into viewers … that might cause crashes in other people’s’ viewers, and that’s not good. So we have to try to protect against that.

The best place to put that protection, if we can do it, is to put it one the server-side, if we can do it. So there are lots of things that, over time, we may add checking of things, as they are uploaded, on the server, and we may reject uploaded things, and we may reject uploaded things that are inappropriate.

How quickly we will be able to do that will probably vary with what the upload type is and what time we have between doing dazzling new features; but if we find something related to some dazzling new feature we can add some checks to, we might do that.

Continue reading “Second Life projects update: 34/2: TPV Developer meeting”

Pyjama parties, canoeing, dating and a twist of science-fiction

It’s time to kick-off another week of fabulous story-telling in voice, brought to our virtual lives by the staff and volunteers at the Seanchai Library. As always, all times SLT, and events are held at the Library’s Second Life home at Bradley University, unless otherwise indicated.

Sunday, August 23rd 18:00: Magicland Storytime

With Holmes apparently lost in a fall from a path above the Reichenbach Falls, Caledonia, Corwyn and Kayden take a break from Baker Street, and Sunday’s events move to Magicland’s 100-acre wood, where Caledonia is hosting a very special Pooh Bear pyjama party! So get your jammies on, grab your nightcap and a jar of honey and head on over!

Monday August 24th, 19:00: Roadless Areas

Gyro Muggins follows the adventures of some brave souls canoeing in Minnesota circa 1942.

Tuesday August 25th, Not That It Matters

AA Milne by Howard Coster, 1926
AA Milne by Howard Coster, 1926

Corwyn Allen continues to read AA Milne’s 1919 collection of humorous essays. Best known for his tales of Wnnie the Pooh, Christopher Robin and the 100 acre Wood, Milne in fact wrote widely in bother fiction and non-fiction.

Here he passes observation on wide range of topics, starting with a reflection upon his own writing, “Sometimes when the printer is waiting for an article which really should have been sent to him the day before, I sit at my desk and wonder if there is any possible subject in the whole world upon which I can possibly find anything to say.”

With considerations ranging from why a gentleman’s collar might squeak, or the fact that Isaiah most certainly didn’t carry a notebook, with assorted thoughts on goldfish and daffodils along the way, this is a book of essays wide-range in topic and content. Some of it may, nigh-on a century since the essays first appeared in this book, appear dated and as solidly dated and trapped forever in the opening decades of the 20th century. Other are perhaps as relevant today in their insights and commentary as they were when freshly written. All of them come with Milne’s familiar humour and jovial observations.

Wednesday August 26th, 19:00: The Penderwicks on Gardam Street

PenderwicksCaledonia Skytower opens the pages of  Jeanne Birdsall’s 2014 volume about the Penderwick family, the second in the series.

When the four Penderwick sisters learn that, encouraged by his sister-in-law and the wishes of their late mother, their father is going to start meeting other women, they fear the worst, and so enact the Save Daddy Plan. They set their Dad up with dates he won’t get on with, while he, also not overly convinced of things, goes out on pretend dates.

However, things start to change as the sisters meet and get to know Ben from next door, and his mum, Iantha. Added to the mix the adventures and challenges each of the four sisters face, and it turns out to be quite a series of events and changes for the Penderwicks – one of them very much turning out for the best.

Thursday August 27th: Skin Folks

skin folkShandon Loring reads from Nalo Hopkinson’s  2001 collection of 15 short stories connected by a central theme of skin-shedding.with a distinctly Caribbean flavour, these are stories where nothing is quite as a it seems and illusion rules the perception.

Starting with a delightful twist on the classic tale of Little Red Riding Hood, these stories carry the reader and listener through this world of illusion and magical change, with often surprising conclusions being reach in a hot and spicy style in what can only be described as a meeting of science-fiction and folklore.

 

Saturday, August 29th: Adventures from the Twlight Zone – Seanchai InWorldz

Join Shandon and Caledonia in the story of a man sentenced to solitary confinement on a distant asteroid for 50 years, his only visitors the crew of his resupply ship, who visit four times a year – but only for 20 minutes. To try to make the man’s life a little easier, the captain of the ship delivers a feminine robot to help keep him company. Then the news comes that the man has been pardoned and he can return to Earth – but only at a price.

https://inworldz/region/Delphi/176/72/36

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Please check with the Seanchai Library SL’s blog for updates and for additions or changes to the week’s schedule. The featured charity for August / September is Water for People, “When one person or one family has clean, accessible water, their lives are changed. But when entire regions and countries have water, the world is changed.”

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