2020 Simulator User Group week #38 summary

Mount Campion, July 2020 – blog post

The following notes were taken from the September 15th Simulator User Group meeting.

Simulator Deployments

Please refer to the server deployment thread for news and updates.

  • There was no deployment to the grid’s main SLS channel on Tuesday, September 15th, 2020, leaving the simulators running on release 547626.
  • On Wednesday, September 16th some – or all – of the simulator on the RCs channel should be updated to simulator maintenance release 548903, containing updates related to the cloud uplift work which contain no user-visible updates.

SL Viewer

There have been no viewer updates to mark the start of week #38. This leaves the current pipelines as follows:

  • Current release viewer version 6.4.7.546539, dated August 11, promoted August 17, formerly the Arrack Maintenance RC viewer – No Change.
  • Release channel cohorts:
    • Bormotukha Maintenance RC viewer, version 6.4.8.548394, issued September 8.
    • Mesh uploader RC viewer, version 6.4.8.548061, September 8.
    • Love Me Render RC viewer, version 6.4.8.547427,August 21.
  • Project viewers:
    • Project Jelly project viewer (Jellydoll updates), version 6.4.8.547487, issued August 26.
    • Custom Key Mappings project viewer, version 6.4.5.544079, June 30.
    • Copy / Paste viewer, version 6.3.5.533365, December 9, 2019.
    • Project Muscadine (Animesh follow-on) project viewer, version 6.4.0.532999, November 22, 2019.
    • Legacy Profiles viewer, version 6.3.2.530836, September 17, 2019. Covers the re-integration of Viewer Profiles.
    • 360 Snapshot project viewer, version 6.2.4.529111, July 16, 2019.

Cloud Uplift

Region Testing

As the Lab has announced, and I’ve reported – see Play Linden Realms in the cloud and help the Lab, the Linden Realms have been cloned to Aditi and are running on AWS  servers. Interested users are asked to help in testing the regions by logging-in to Aditi and spending time playing the game. Follow the links above to find out more.

LSL HTTP Changes

As a part of the move to AWS services, there will be changes to the use of HTTP once cloud-hosted simulator come into use. It is Linden Lab’s hope that these changes will not cause significant issues, however, in order to provide scripters with as much information as possible, Oz Linden posted a forum update providing an outline of the areas of impact: llHTTPRequest – Outbound HTTP and lRequestURL or llRequestSecureURL.

A number of regions on Aditi have been set-up to allow for testing, comprising:

  • Morris
  • Cloud Sandbox 1
  • Cloud Sandbox 2
  • Cloud Sandbox 3
  • Cloud Sandbox 4

Further information and the continuing discussion can be found within the forum thread.

Changes are coming to LSL HTTP calls – for details please refer to LSL HTTP Changes Coming

Group Chat

People continue to experience issues with group chat disconnecting / failing following a transition to a different region via vehicle or teleport (see BUG-229219). As per last week’s update, there is a potential fix for this issue in the works, but whether or not it solves all of the issues currently being experienced or not is an unknown until it is actually deployed.

Bungenäs at Binemust in Second Life

Bungenäs, Binemust, September 2020

For her latest region design at Binemust, Biné Rodenberger offers visitors a most unusual taste of Sweden’s Gotland.

The largest of Sweden’s islands, and also a province, county, and municipality in its own right, Gotland is a fascination place, rich in culture and opportunities for exploration and discovery, offering many unique experiences (ever had a fish cooked using molten glass? If not, Gotland’s Restaurant Rot is the place to go).

Bungenäs, the inspiration for Biné’s design, lies at the opposite end of Gotland to Restaurant Rot, and is perhaps one of the island’s most unusual attractions. During the 20th century, the peninsula was home to a limestone quarry marked by a pair of unique kilns, and a large Swedish Army training zone, complete with bunkers, barracks, and open and wooded training areas. The quarry enjoyed a 50-year run from 1910 to 1960, while the rest of the 160-hectare site was used by the army through until 1963, when it was also abandoned.

The Bungenäs peninsula showing the former army training grounds in the foreground and and the limestone quarry, centre left. Credit: Gunnar Britse

For the 40 years that followed, the peninsula was closed to the public, until moves were made to re-open it as a park / tourist destination in the early 2000s. However, entrepreneur Joachim Kuylenstierna – whose father had served in the army and trained at Bungenäs – was concerned about  such a move would do to the unique aspects of the location: the ageing bunkers, the run-down buildings and deserted quarry facilities, and so on, if the peninsula was turned into some sort of tourist resort with all the modern trappings – an up-to-date hotel, a golf course and so on.

To ensure this did not happen, Kuylenstierna purchased the land himself and turned it into a most unusual development: a new community location without roads or houses. Instead much of the existing infrastructure of bunkers and buildings would be be converted into unique homes, with the bicycle the primary mode of transport. He employed a specialist architecture firm to convert the bunkers and other buildings into homes and community facilities, and to zone the remaining landscape into plots and parcels that clients could purchase and have homes built to their  own specification and fully in keeping with the existing structures and integrated into the natural environments found across the peninsula, and also carefully redeveloped by the architects in keeping with Kuylenstierna’s broad vision.

We don’t design and build buildings – we work with the landscape and the existing constructions to create structures that are formed after their surroundings. We’re not the least interested in creating “boxes” on the ground. Each plot of land is specifically laid-out and, in turn, has its very own zoning plan. The peninsula was also divided into different regions with their own defined type of nature, which required different types of structures.

– Lisa Ekström, Skälsö Arkitekter, developers of the Bungenäs site

Bungenäs, Binemust, September 2020

Within Binemust, Biné offers her own take on this unique setting, centred on the the old limestone quarry, its kilns and outbuildings. These sit within a low-lying part of the region, the quarry itself flooded, the kilns and outbuildings rising above its rocky ring. Cold sands border the east and south sides of these lowlands, merging with grasslands cut by a fast flowing stream. As the sands curve around to the south, so the land rises to form a bluff between sea and inland quarry, a number of aged bunker-like shells among the sand a grass, hinting at the old military preserve that once existed at Bungenäs.

To the west, a ribbon of sand continues along the coast, marked on one side by old piers that may have once served the lime factory, and a line of old beds that offer a most unusual sun loungers, Biné suggesting they might have been pulled from the old barracks, as is the case at the physical Bungenäs in Gotland.

Bungenäs, Binemust, September 2020

The north side of the region is marked by a highland plateau, rich in fir trees and crossed by tracks and paths, representing the more natural aspects of the Bungenäs peninsula and, perhaps, the 3 km tour trail that winds through the region – as noted, road vehicles are generally banned from the region to help preserve its natural state. These highlands are also split by the stream, which drops by way of a single waterfall to continue its way the the sea across the lowlands.

There are differences between Biné’s vision of Bungenäs as the real thing: houses at Binemust are represented more by modern structures than converted bunkers; there is a camp site at Binemust, although as Bine notes, there doesn’t appear to be anything like it within Bungenäs. She’s also added horses to roam alongside the sheep (which are a feature of Bungenäs).

Bungenäs, Binemust, September 2020

However, she’s also replicated some of the original’s cosier features: the mess hall at Bungenäs, for example has been converted into a café with a small suite of hotel rooms above it that visitors can book for short stays.  Bine offers the same through a small bed-and-breakfast house tucked away in the region. She also includes bicycles, which for the common mode of transport within the community. Finally, and in a touch of her own, she’s included a small selection from her personal art collection from SL, located in the limestone warehouse, which doubles as the region’s café.

All of which makes for an engaging and educational visit – be sure to look up Bungenäs on the interwebz for yourself when visiting.

Bungenäs, Binemust, September 2020

SLurl Details

Play Linden Realms in the cloud and help the Lab

Linden Realms is now running in the cloud – on the beta grid. Image courtesy of Linden Lab

Linden Realms was the first Linden Lab developed game using experience tools. First introduced in 2011 (see: The Linden Realms game: Rock on!), the game has been updated numerous times over the years, the last time in 2018 (see: The further revamp of Linden Realms in Second Life).

It is now the next major element of Second Life (after the core Blake Sea regions) to be cloned to Aditi, the beta grid, and uploaded to the cloud – and Linden Lab are asking users to give it a go, so they can further test region  / simulator operations under load when running on AWS services.

The request for assistance came via a blog post on Monday, September 15th, which reads in full:

As you may know, we are in the process of moving Second Life to the cloud! Our first ever cloud simulators, on the beta grid, have been uplifted, and we can use your assistance. Here’s your opportunity to be among the first Residents to test the performance of uplift.
Log in to the beta grid (click here for instructions) and start at the Aditi Portal Park to try out Linden Realms in the cloud. Bring your friends and spend some time engaging in the virtual experience produced and provided by Linden Lab. You may even run into the often unseen technical Lindens working away. Don’t forget to ask them for their Linden bear, and beware of the rock monster!
If you find any issues with Linden Realms on the beta grid, please file a BUG jira at https://jira.secondlife.com, and make sure to include the time, date, region you were in when you found the issue, and a description of what happened, as well as what you would expect to happen in a similar situation on the Main Grid today.

We Need Your Help Testing Performance on Uplifted Simulator – Linden Lab, September 15th, 2020

Linden Realms. Image courtesy of Linden Lab

So, if you want to help speed the cloud uplift process, why not follow the instructions contained in the links in the Lab’s blog post, log-in to Aditi and hop over to the beta grid and spending a little time playing Linden Realms – even if you don’t find anything to report, issue-wise, your time playing the game is still helping the Lab gather data on region and simulator performance.