2018 SL UG updates #34/1: server, viewer, and mobile SL rumours

Erebos Harbor; Inara Pey, July 2018, on FlickrErebos Harborblog post

There was no Simulator User Group meeting for week #34 2018, so the project notes are pretty brief.

Server Deployments

As always, please refer to the server deployment thread for the latest updates.

  • On Tuesday August 21st, the SLS (Main) channel was updated with sever maintenance package 18#, comprising an update to the HTTP delivery of off-line IMs and notifications that should ensure group notices and Friend requests are correctly delivered. This release was deployed to the main RC channels in week #33.
  • There is no planned deployment or restart for any of the RC channels, also leaving them on server maintenance package 18#

SL Viewer

  • The Second Life Voice viewer, version and dated August 14th, was promoted to de facto release status on August 20th, 2018.
  • A new Love Me Render viewer, version, was released on August 20th, containing assorted viewer rendering fixes for the following issues / requests:
    • Applying planar texture alignment to prims with diffuse and normal maps fails.
    • Align Planar Faces does not work on normal or specular maps.
    • Handle dual-graphics systems more robustly.
    • Derendering Avatar type also derenders some rezzed mesh objects.
    • Selecting mesh objects make several HUD-related items invisible.
    • Negative horizontal & vertical offset values for normal & specular maps always revert when closing build floater.
    • Add info to text debug display for cache hit rate and fetch timing.
    • Grids.xml with a single grid instead of an array in LLSD can crash viewer.
    • Objects with Alpha Masking > 0 do not rendering correctly on avatar.
    • With transparent texture and alpha masking at cut-off 1, the underlying colour shows through in small patches.
    • [DRTSIM-383] Changing the horizontal offset value also changes the vertical offset while editing specular maps in the build floater.
    • Incorrect values of Rotation degrees field with checked Align Planar Faces check box in different tabs.

The remaining SL viewer pipelines are currently unchanged:

  • Release channel cohorts:
    • Animesh RC viewer, version, August 13.
    • BugSplat RC viewer, version, August 7. This viewer is functionally identical to the current release viewer, but uses BugSplat for crash reporting, rather than the Lab’s own Breakpad based crash reporting tools.
  • Project viewers:
  • Linux Spur viewer, version, dated November 17, 2017 and promoted to release status 29 November – offered pending a Linux version of the Alex Ivy viewer code.
  • Obsolete platform viewer, version, May 8, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7. This viewer will remain available for as long as reasonable, but will not be updated with new features or bug fixes.

SL iOS / Android Clients / Streaming SL

Speculation is running rife in some quarters that the Lab is developing a mobile client for iOS / Android following the publication of a job opportunity for a Second Life Senior Mobile Engineer.

The potential for offering a mobile (or even a streamed viewer experience through a browser) was most recently publicly discussed by both Ebbe Altberg and Oz and Grumpity Linden at the SL15B Meet the Lindens events in June 2018. I’m embedding the audio from those sessions here, together with links to the summaries of what was said, for those who prefer reading over listening:

DiXmiX 2017-2018 retrospective in Second Life

DiXmiX Gallery: Cecilia Nansen Mode (December 2017) and Uma Sabra (September 2017)

DiXmiX Gallery is one of the most prolific galleries in Second Life in terms of the frequency of exhibitions. With three halls available for art, the gallery can feature up to three artists a month on a rolling basis, sometimes with exhibitions in the respective halls overlapping one another in their duration, a move which further helps to keep visits to the gallery fresh.

For the four weeks from August 17th, 2018, curator Dixmix Source is hosting a slightly different exhibition from the “norm” at the gallery: it is something of a retrospective of exhibitions held through 2017 and 2018, with the work of some 30 artists on display across all three halls and within the basement gallery of The Womb. As such, it is an opportunity to both revisit memories of past exhibits and  – for those unfamiliar with the art displayed at DiXmiX – the opportunity to sample its scope of the art to be found there.

DiXmiX Gallery: Oyo and Magic Marker (April 2018)

The artists included in the exhibition are (dates in brackets refer to reviews in this blog): Elo (elorac Paule), Maloe Vansant and Uma Sabra (September / October 2017); Purple Leonis ONeill (Nel4481), Juris Bergmanis (JurisJo) and Imani Nayar (October 2017); Cecilia Nansen Mode (December 2017); Titus Palmira, Gaus (Cicciuzzo Gausman) and Burk Bode (February 2018); I’m A Magic Marker, Oyo and Mr. S (April 2018); Giovanna Cerise (May 2018); A. DeLauren (AlessaMendoza), Kimeu Korg and Kato Salyut (June 2018); together with Goodcross; Huckleberry Hax;  Vallys Baxter; Lou Shadow; Moon Edenbaum, Nur Moo, and DixMix himself.

The exhibit also incorporates  Bicycles (July 2018), relocated for this exhibition, a selection from Melusina Parkin’s Less is More (February 2018) and the Best of The Womb, featuring  Nath Baxton and Joslyn Benson, all of which can be found in the basement gallery, The Womb.

DiXmiX Gallery: Juris Bergmanis (October 2017)

DixMix is very much a gallery that leans towards avatar studies within the exhibitions it hosts – which given Dixmix himself is very much an exponent of the art of avatar studies, is an entirely natural bias – and this is very much reflected in this retrospective exhibition. As such, those pieces that focus on other elements of artistic expression, such as physical world art (represented here by Huckleberry Hax) and SL landscape art (notably, but not exclusively, Juris Bergmanis), tend to particularly capture the eye in scanning through the gallery. But don’t let this deceive you; there is a richness of narrative this is striking in every single image presented.

Several exhibitions at the gallery have been built around a theme by the artist, and capturing this in just one or two images isn’t really possible. Take Celicia Nansen Mode’s Within the Voice of Björk from December 2017, a captivating interpretations of female form, moods and feelings, beautifully through images and the music of the Icelandic singer (and still one of the most memorable exhibitions I’ve seen at DiXmiX). It was a stunning exhibit, but one not easily recaptured hen presenting just two of the images from the collection.

DiXmiX Gallery: Elo (September 2017) and Purple Leonis (October 2017)

However, Dixmix has sought to get around this issue where possible. With 12 Photographers and 1 Chair by Mr. S, and Bath Stories by Nur Moo, for example, the complete set of images for each are presented as a framed slide show, allowing all of them to be seen in turn. Sadly, due to the use of music with each of Celicia’s pieces, this approach wasn’t possible for With the Voice of Björk.

As noted, the exhibition is stated to run for the four weeks from August 17th, and offers an ideal introduction to DiXmiX gallery and the general style of art displayed there for those who have yet to visit, and a trip down memory lane for those of us who frequent the gallery.

DiXmiX Gallery: Oyo (April 2018)

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