2020 SL project updates week #32: TPVD summary

Jambo! A Voyage to Africa, May 2020 – blog post

The following notes are taken from the TPV Developer meeting held on Friday, August 7th, 2020. These meetings are generally held every other week, unless otherwise noted in any given summary. The embedded video is provided to Pantera – my thanks to her for recording and providing it. Time stamps are included with the notes will open the video at the point(s) where a specific topic is discussed.

SL Viewer News


The Tools Update 2 viewer updated to version on August 4th.

The rest of the official viewer pipelines remain as follows:

  • Current release viewer version, dated June 11th, promoted June 23rd, formerly the CEF RC viewer – ROLL BACK.
  • Release channel cohorts (please see my notes on manually installing RC viewer versions if you wish to install any release candidate(s) yourself):
  • Project viewers:
    • Custom Key Mappings project viewer, version, June 30.
    • Copy / Paste viewer, version, December 9, 2019.
    • Project Muscadine (Animesh follow-on) project viewer, version, November 22, 2019.
    • Legacy Profiles viewer, version, September 17, 2019. Covers the re-integration of Viewer Profiles.
    • 360 Snapshot project viewer, version, July 16, 2019.

General Viewer Notes

  • A further version of the Tools Update 2 viewer is anticipated for week #33 (commencing Monday, August 10th). This may appear as the de facto release viewer version.
  • Currently, the next viewer in line for promotion after the Tools Update 2 viewer is likely to be the current Arrack Maintenance viewer.
    • A further RC update to Arrack may be issued early in week #33; however, if the Tools Update 2 viewer is promoted to release status, this viewer may be held over pending a merge with the Tools Update 2 viewer code base.
  • Love Me Render (LMR) continue to be held as the graphics team work on various rendering issues.
    • There are apparently around 4 remaining open issues, with two more currently being worked on.
    • Of the open issues, all are performance related. Some of these may need further triage.
    • The issue of Linden Water continuing to give particularly degraded performance on EEP viewer is still being investigated by both LL and TPVs developers, but no potential fix identified as yet. There appears to be some combination of factors causing this (e.g. vertex buffer object (VBO) memory thrashing potentially being one).

In Brief

  • [10:50-13:46] During a text-based call for volumetric clouds from a developer, Ptolemy Linden pointed out an early feature for EEP was to have been atmospheric scattering that got dropped at the time and some of this work might potentially be “simpler” to implement than volumetric clouds – not that his comment means either will be forthcoming.
    • Crepuscular rays (“god rays”) were one aspect of this work, but had to be dropped as they  proved too performance intensive at the time. Two common means for generating “god rays” are via adding geometry to a scene, another is via ray casting and shadow map sampling – both of these can be computationally intensive.
  • The latter half of the meeting is dominated by a user-led discussion on relative performance, what constitutes as a viable demonstration of average performance (e.g. a lone avatar frolicking in a region with all the viewer’s upper-end graphics capabilities enabled, vs trying to do the same with even a moderate number of avatars also in the region, etc). As this was conducted in chat, you can catch it in the video, below.