Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

2007-01-10 Thread sconzey
But surely this is why they've released the source of the client side.
This is the side that does the rendering and content display. I've
seen wonders done to shabby content by an overhauled graphics engine.
(Anarchy Online)


On 1/9/07, swe [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 Hi,

 yup, I agree, I downloaded SL cause everyone was telling me of
 'dead-end' vrml tech, so I wanted to check the hype:
 I was very surprized that they even have no shadows, which I thought they
 would have.
 Textures look often shabby, most of their 'houses' look like boxes, their
 'trees' flow in the sky, not on ground.
 I guessed lots of people there, but so far I found round 20 in the start
 place, which cybertown had in better times too.

 As people wrote on VRML/X3D -list, the client in open source is only the
 useless part when you have a server-client system.

 Well,
 I still hope VOS will make a vrml2vos convertor some time...

 CU
 hermetic



-- 
QOTD:
Violence is the last resort of the incompetent
-- Isaac Asimov

GPG Public Key: http://www.jargonjunkie.com/rants/scones.asc
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Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

2007-01-10 Thread chris
On 1/9/07, Len Bullard [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 Letting out the viewer is something of a SOP.  I think the server-side is
 possibly more important given that there are any number of open source
 viewers out there for 3D platforms that are just as good or better.  It is
 the management of the server farm that makes the difference, that and a big
 budget for marketing.
yes the server side services *and* the networking: SL uses UDP, X3D
has little in the way of networking capability - direct from the
client. I have been trying for two years to get improved networking
and web services capability into X3D, but it is arduous. It became a
working group proposal a year ago and still have not got the WG
approved. The Consortium is slow to recognise what, I think, is
essential to its success.

chris


 Yes, I think they are looking at migrating the building market, but the only
 thing that brings in the bigCos is the site traffic.  Otherwise, to Sears,
 there is no advantage to being there.   IBM can talk a lot about boardroom
 VR but they are a services company in this market and without other
 companies willing to host on private farms, there is no market.

 There is a lot of puff in the online worlds market.  Of what value is it to
 own content that you can't move because it only works on that platform?  So
 like a Macintosh or a Mall, without a big membership that is actually going
 there often, having a presence there is largely a decorative bauble, a loss
 leader for being 'in the know'.  This market is relying on the naivete of
 the IT groups of the companies hosting there.

 The in-world economy is a fascinating experiment in waiting to see when the
 Feds will begin to look at it the same way they look at church bingo.  They
 tend to wait until the value is high enough that they can safely take their
 cut without killing the game.

 len

 -Original Message-
 From: [EMAIL PROTECTED] [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]
 On Behalf Of Or Botton
 Sent: Monday, January 08, 2007 10:06 AM
 To: VOS Discussion
 Subject: Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

 Granted, it was expected, but there is one major issue thats a big
 bad omen: And thats content copy protection.

 SecondLife has been largely tauted as a place where you can make a
 quick buck by creating and selling copies of content. This is
 mostly an artificial market created by placing DRM on objects - being
 able to flag a texture, model, script or an entire package as non
 copyable, modifyable or transferable.

 Personally, I am all for an opensource platform with no DRM involved.
 I believe that a VR platform can only become mainstream and
 widespread if it is open and free. But SecondLife's act is more self
 destructive because by nature they are not open and free.

 With the source out, it would be a rather easy task to duplicate
 models and textures of objects, pretty much breaking the DRM with a
 very casual effort from the programmer. This could be very damaging
 to their internal economy. Again, I do not support the concept of
 having virtual economies, but doing what they just did is more like
 shooting their own foot.

 Perhaps this signs that LindenLab now views the big gamers -
 companies and such as the real customers now? These people will have
 much less of an issue to enforce their copyrights then the regular
 person.




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Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

2007-01-10 Thread Mark Wagner
On 1/10/07, Peter Amstutz [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 One thing I've been wondering about -- while their primitives seem to be
 a pretty clever solution to the bandwidth problem, is their graphics
 architechture completely committed to being based on prims?  With the
 rest of the world being based on straight triangle meshes or surface
 patches, their graphics model seems to be completely unable to keep up
 with the state of the art in 3D graphics.

One thing I like about the prim model is that it can be converted to
raytracing and CSG with little to no effort.

(Yes, you can raytrace meshes.  But they look like raytraced meshes.)

-- 
Mark Wagner

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Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

2007-01-10 Thread chris
On 1/11/07, Reed Hedges [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 chris wrote:
  On 1/9/07, Len Bullard [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
  Letting out the viewer is something of a SOP.  I think the server-side is
  possibly more important given that there are any number of open source
  viewers out there for 3D platforms that are just as good or better.  It is
  the management of the server farm that makes the difference, that and a big
  budget for marketing.
  yes the server side services *and* the networking

 Cory Linden (I forget his real name) did a QA about open-sourcing the
 client, and someone asked him if they think that also open-sourcing the
 server would hurt SL from a business perspective, and he said No.  But
 I wonder if they do have plans on doing it.
Yes, that would be pretty interesting.


  X3D
  has little in the way of networking capability - direct from the
  client.

 It's true. X3D is basically silent about multiuser stuff.  The main way
 of doing anything like on-line changes is a kind of AJAX approach: use a
 script to send requests back to a CGI program on the server for more
 data to display in the scene. There's a function in the scripting API
 which basically does this, called createVrmlFromString (or
 createVrmlFromURL?) or something like that.

Ajax3D relies on the javascript/SAI (or EAI) API of the Web browser.
But you can do it all with straight http and a combo of loadURL and
createVrmlFromUrl. (as used on planet-earth.org and described in
http://planet-earth.org/sg05/sg05EvolutionaryAccident.html
http://planet-earth.org/sg05/presentation/EfficientHTTP.html
http://planet-earth.org/sg05/sg05planet-earthInstructions.html).
This uses just the two internal EAI/SAI calls and no issues with going
to the Web browser for its javascript API.

 People have made some very workable multiuser systems that used VRML
 heavily in the past, and at least one or two of those are still around
 and kicking (VNet2 and VR4All; Blaxxun's thing?) though the networking
 and multiuser aspects are not standard.

yes, all relied on the Web browser java script API, I believe and that
kept on being broken by one industry player or another: e.g. when
netscappe changed its javascript binding or when MS froze the java
support, etc. So portable solutions were not possible. It is proly a
similar situation today, but I would like to be shown wrong (e.g. show
me a SAI solution portable across web browsers).

 I think that VOS could be a good multiuser networking front end for a
 VRML or X3D world running on the server-- VRML and X3D are designed to
 describe a scene, with scripts and routes in it to describe animations
 and interactions.   The idea is to have that VRML system running on the
 server, and have that scene reflected in a set of A3DL VObjects.
are A3DL ajax 3D objects?

I agree somewhat: X3D, esp the XML coding, is best suited for
interchange. It is rediculous to expect applications to be programmed
in XML tho. VRML is better to program in, ditto for  X3D CLassic, but
python or something like that would be better.

 In designing the A3DL object model we took a few cues from VRML but we
 ended up trying to simplify and flatten things as well; some of the
 stuff that VRML does via extra nesting of nodes (like seperate Shape
 and Geometry nodes) we do via the polymorphic types of metaobjects.
ok, I'd have to look it up - I don't know anything much about VOS
except that it is basically something I'd like to see on the server
side as part of a Web3D app.

 Anyway, I stopped working on the VRMLServer a while ago to go work on
 Web stuff for a while. I hope to go back to it soon but if anyone wants
 to work on it it's in the source repository. It's in a halfway state
 where it can load a VRML file and create some objects, but it's buggy.
 It uses OpenVRML to load and run the VRML scene.
I want to look at collaborating on something like this in the future -
after my phd (a few months).

chris


 Reed


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Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

2007-01-10 Thread Peter Amstutz
On Wed, Jan 10, 2007 at 09:15:37PM -0500, Reed Hedges wrote:

 Cory Linden (I forget his real name) did a QA about open-sourcing the
 client, and someone asked him if they think that also open-sourcing the
 server would hurt SL from a business perspective, and he said No.  But
 I wonder if they do have plans on doing it.

snarkWell, seeing as how they aren't making any money off of Second 
Life as it is, it would be hard to hurt their business any more than 
they're already doing themselves./snark

-- 
[   Peter Amstutz  ][ [EMAIL PROTECTED] ][ [EMAIL PROTECTED] ]
[Lead Programmer][Interreality Project][Virtual Reality for the Internet]
[ VOS: Next Generation Internet Communication][ http://interreality.org ]
[ http://interreality.org/~tetron ][ pgpkey:  pgpkeys.mit.edu  18C21DF7 ]



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Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

2007-01-09 Thread swe
Hi,

yup, I agree, I downloaded SL cause everyone was telling me of 
'dead-end' vrml tech, so I wanted to check the hype:
I was very surprized that they even have no shadows, which I thought they 
would have.
Textures look often shabby, most of their 'houses' look like boxes, their 
'trees' flow in the sky, not on ground.
I guessed lots of people there, but so far I found round 20 in the start 
place, which cybertown had in better times too.

As people wrote on VRML/X3D -list, the client in open source is only the 
useless part when you have a server-client system.

Well,
I still hope VOS will make a vrml2vos convertor some time...

CU
hermetic

 (stacks of crisp venture capital dollars) runs out?  I haven't seen much
 word-of-mouth promotion of Second Life, and what I have seen has been
 mostly negative (of course I'm biased here).  Rather there's been a lot
 of over-the-top hype and top-down marketing, rather than the sort of
 grass-roots support that suggests a sustainable platform.

 They desparately want to make SL seem bigger than it is, because people
 like a winner.  But if the real numbers are right (250,000 accounts
 logged at least once in the last two months, 15,000 simultaneous users
 at peak usage) I can't help but think the user community is really,
 really small considering their multi-million dollar investment in
 hardware, software and marketing.

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Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

2007-01-09 Thread chris
On 1/9/07, Or Botton [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:

 On Jan 9, 2007, at 1:08 PM, swe wrote:

  Textures look often shabby, most of their 'houses' look like boxes,
  their
  'trees' flow in the sky, not on ground.
  I guessed lots of people there, but so far I found round 20 in the
  start
  place, which cybertown had in better times too.

 I have to chip in into this one - Its true that most of the
 structures you've encountered may look pretty bad, but you have to
 remember that this is mostly because the creators of said buildings
 tend to be inexperienced users.

 The idea behind SL's live building system is to leverage creation to
 the point where any user who wishs to try it - professional or not -
 can build something without having to go through a long period of
 study. This does cause alot of low-quality and bad looking structures
 to populate the landscape, but its not because the engine cannot do
 any better.

 Feel free to look me up on the IRC channel and i'll show you around
 SL - some of the buildings built by the more professional artists may
 surprise you.

Yeah, some have spent the time to develop the skill and the content.
I saw some impressive SL stuff, which surprised me considering how
primitive their
primitive modelling components seem to be.

chris

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Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

2007-01-09 Thread swe
Hi Or Botton,

hmm I should install an IRC, or maybe you can give me hints where to see 
better stuff in SL.
I like to be surprized.

Sorry if I did such a flame, but its a reaction of all the hype SL 
creates.

CU

hermetic


On Tue, 9 Jan 2007, Or Botton wrote:

 I have to chip in into this one - Its true that most of the
 structures you've encountered may look pretty bad, but you have to
 remember that this is mostly because the creators of said buildings
 tend to be inexperienced users.

 The idea behind SL's live building system is to leverage creation to
 the point where any user who wishs to try it - professional or not -
 can build something without having to go through a long period of
 study. This does cause alot of low-quality and bad looking structures
 to populate the landscape, but its not because the engine cannot do
 any better.

 Feel free to look me up on the IRC channel and i'll show you around
 SL - some of the buildings built by the more professional artists may
 surprise you.

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Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

2007-01-08 Thread Len Bullard
It was expected.  It gives them a way to push the financing of the
development off to organizations like IBM and to claim they are an open
platform.  They need to do something to stop the burning of the VC capital
and they have to solve out some very difficult technical problems.

Expect yet-another-big-burst of CNet articles.

len

-Original Message-
From: [EMAIL PROTECTED] [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]
On Behalf Of Or Botton
Sent: Monday, January 08, 2007 9:38 AM
To: VOS Discussion
Subject: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

LindenLab have just opened the source code for the SecondLife client.

http://secondlife.com/developers/opensource/

This step has actually surprised me - I didnt think that they were  
anywhere near doing this for the next two years or so.

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Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

2007-01-08 Thread Or Botton
Granted, it was expected, but there is one major issue thats a big  
bad omen: And thats content copy protection.

SecondLife has been largely tauted as a place where you can make a  
quick buck by creating and selling copies of content. This is  
mostly an artificial market created by placing DRM on objects - being  
able to flag a texture, model, script or an entire package as non  
copyable, modifyable or transferable.

Personally, I am all for an opensource platform with no DRM involved.  
I believe that a VR platform can only become mainstream and  
widespread if it is open and free. But SecondLife's act is more self  
destructive because by nature they are not open and free.

With the source out, it would be a rather easy task to duplicate  
models and textures of objects, pretty much breaking the DRM with a  
very casual effort from the programmer. This could be very damaging  
to their internal economy. Again, I do not support the concept of  
having virtual economies, but doing what they just did is more like  
shooting their own foot.

Perhaps this signs that LindenLab now views the big gamers -  
companies and such as the real customers now? These people will have  
much less of an issue to enforce their copyrights then the regular  
person.

On Jan 8, 2007, at 5:52 PM, Len Bullard wrote:

 It was expected.  It gives them a way to push the financing of the
 development off to organizations like IBM and to claim they are an  
 open
 platform.  They need to do something to stop the burning of the VC  
 capital
 and they have to solve out some very difficult technical problems.

 Expect yet-another-big-burst of CNet articles.

 len

 -Original Message-
 From: [EMAIL PROTECTED] [mailto:vos-d- 
 [EMAIL PROTECTED]
 On Behalf Of Or Botton
 Sent: Monday, January 08, 2007 9:38 AM
 To: VOS Discussion
 Subject: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

 LindenLab have just opened the source code for the SecondLife client.

 http://secondlife.com/developers/opensource/

 This step has actually surprised me - I didnt think that they were
 anywhere near doing this for the next two years or so.

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Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

2007-01-08 Thread Len Bullard
Letting out the viewer is something of a SOP.  I think the server-side is
possibly more important given that there are any number of open source
viewers out there for 3D platforms that are just as good or better.  It is
the management of the server farm that makes the difference, that and a big
budget for marketing.

Yes, I think they are looking at migrating the building market, but the only
thing that brings in the bigCos is the site traffic.  Otherwise, to Sears,
there is no advantage to being there.   IBM can talk a lot about boardroom
VR but they are a services company in this market and without other
companies willing to host on private farms, there is no market.

There is a lot of puff in the online worlds market.  Of what value is it to
own content that you can't move because it only works on that platform?  So
like a Macintosh or a Mall, without a big membership that is actually going
there often, having a presence there is largely a decorative bauble, a loss
leader for being 'in the know'.  This market is relying on the naivete of
the IT groups of the companies hosting there.

The in-world economy is a fascinating experiment in waiting to see when the
Feds will begin to look at it the same way they look at church bingo.  They
tend to wait until the value is high enough that they can safely take their
cut without killing the game.

len

-Original Message-
From: [EMAIL PROTECTED] [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]
On Behalf Of Or Botton
Sent: Monday, January 08, 2007 10:06 AM
To: VOS Discussion
Subject: Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

Granted, it was expected, but there is one major issue thats a big  
bad omen: And thats content copy protection.

SecondLife has been largely tauted as a place where you can make a  
quick buck by creating and selling copies of content. This is  
mostly an artificial market created by placing DRM on objects - being  
able to flag a texture, model, script or an entire package as non  
copyable, modifyable or transferable.

Personally, I am all for an opensource platform with no DRM involved.  
I believe that a VR platform can only become mainstream and  
widespread if it is open and free. But SecondLife's act is more self  
destructive because by nature they are not open and free.

With the source out, it would be a rather easy task to duplicate  
models and textures of objects, pretty much breaking the DRM with a  
very casual effort from the programmer. This could be very damaging  
to their internal economy. Again, I do not support the concept of  
having virtual economies, but doing what they just did is more like  
shooting their own foot.

Perhaps this signs that LindenLab now views the big gamers -  
companies and such as the real customers now? These people will have  
much less of an issue to enforce their copyrights then the regular  
person.




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Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

2007-01-08 Thread Len Bullard
That's a fair comparison, Peter.  There are many lastGen web marketing games
being played and some even older Hollywood tricks like the dust-up between
the Graefs and the media that published pix and vids of the famous flying
penises griefer incident imposed over her avatar image.  CNet poses it as
'virtual world' rights incident and a copyright infringement which it isn't
but it gives CNet another excuse to put up yetAnotherSL-related story.  The
Hollywood Catfight for Publicity is a well-worn trick.

Currently we are in a simultaneous phase of do-overs (VR_The_New_Thing: WE
DO IT RIGHT THIS TIME!) and brand devolution as stalwarts such as CNet
become web'loids manufacturing stories and controversies to get eyeballs.
Depending on your point of view or market, having real-time 3D come to the
front of the pack in this environment may be a curse or a blessing.  The
good news is that the technology is being taken seriously again as a market
in the business development offices of major companies; the bad news is the
MAC-Is-The-Platform-of-Choice, aka, the closed systems marketers, are
leading the charge.  Lots of pundit sites such as Terra Nova are repackaging
worn clich├ęs but getting academic grants for them.  Bruce Damer is looking
for help in documenting the History Of Online Communities.  There is sort of
a bum's rush by some to be seen as the Gandalfs of VR and I have to suspect
some of them are Sarumans In Saris but hey, they keep the presses running
stories about VR and real-time 3D and that is good for all of us.

Meanwhile everyone is trying with every blurb private or public to kill VRML
and X3D because the Web3DC is sitting on the ISO gold standard; so, when IBM
steps forward and claims that there are no standards for 3D On The Web, IBM
looks sort of stupid.   The truth is, there are but they are royalty free
and unencumbered and that messes with their plans to get that 99% because
there is no complexity moat for the client side, and that violates the
classic Warren Buffet rules for evaluating a start-up or technology
(barriers for competition).

For niche players, the off-the-web applications of web technologies have
promise and have gotten serious attention because of major contracts in the
Federal markets.  The entertainment industry still doesn't quite know what
makes this NOT a game market and most of the nova-pundits don't either.
This will be the year when a lot of it sorts out.  In times of change, I say
find your natural allies and work together to keep the market and/or your
technology on track for whatever it is you mean to do with it. 

Me:  just building a prototype world for fun and illumination.  VRML97 still
works for that and I may move it on to X3D.  After building worlds for a
hobby for a long time now, I know that I want to be able to pick up a
project even if it is a decade old and finish it or recycle it.  For that I
need real standards and technology that keeps working.  For that, ISO is
gold.  They are slow but very predictable. 

Do what you do with enthusiasm and a deaf left ear.

len

-Original Message-
From: [EMAIL PROTECTED] [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]
On Behalf Of Peter Amstutz
Sent: Monday, January 08, 2007 2:29 PM
To: VOS Discussion
Subject: Re: [vos-d] SecondLife client goes Open Source

Interesting.  This reminds me of the .com mantra Get Big or Die -- 
which usually meant expanding quickly and burning through millions of 
dollars to try and capture 99% of a market that hasn't yet even been 
proven to be profitable.

In a couple years we'll be able to look back and figure out where Second 
Life is on launch parabola -- has it archived escape velocity and will 
be the next Amazon or Yahoo, or come crashing to earth when the fuel 
(stacks of crisp venture capital dollars) runs out?  I haven't seen much 
word-of-mouth promotion of Second Life, and what I have seen has been 
mostly negative (of course I'm biased here).  Rather there's been a lot 
of over-the-top hype and top-down marketing, rather than the sort of 
grass-roots support that suggests a sustainable platform.

They desparately want to make SL seem bigger than it is, because people 
like a winner.  But if the real numbers are right (250,000 accounts 
logged at least once in the last two months, 15,000 simultaneous users 
at peak usage) I can't help but think the user community is really, 
really small considering their multi-million dollar investment in 
hardware, software and marketing.

Also I agree that they're walking a fine line between the natural laws 
of cyberspace and real-world legal systems, and this could really burn 
them at some point down the road.  Whenever someone tries to bend 
cyberspace to conform to their idea of what should and shouldn't be 
allowed (as opposed to what is naturally possible or impossible) 
cyberspace ends up worse off for it.


On Mon, Jan 08, 2007 at 12:42:10PM -0600, Len Bullard wrote:
 Letting out the viewer is something of a SOP.  I think the server-side