Friday, December 28, 2012

SecondLife : Walking Around With A Blurry Avatar : Bake Failure : FireStorm

By Avatar JayR Cela

    Well ya know something has really been annoying me lately, and hopefully once this Project Sun Shine actually becomes a reality ( cross's fingers ) Bake Failure will be a distant memory.

     I'm telling ya it is just horrible lately, and to make matters worse. At least in the FireStorm viewer CTRL+ALT+R no longer exist's as a shortcut for re-baking your textures. 

     Ya gotta make sure you have the Advanced Menu options available and use your mouse to open that drop down menu  and select Rebake Textures. This has got to be one of the biggest blunders I have seen in a long time. Sadly since I am pretty much set in my stubborn ways, and use only FS as my main viewer for SL, I have not had the time to check out some of the other TPV's or LL's official V3, but the keyboard shortcut is GONE !!!!!!

    WTF !!!!! whose idiotic idea was that ??

JayR Cela :(

Thursday, December 27, 2012

SeconLife : Why Windows 8 Suck's A Big One and Miscellaneous Rant's

By Avatar JayR Cela

    Ok it's already starting to happen, friends and relatives have gotten new computers at Christmas, and like it or not they come with Win8 installed, LOL and some of them with no original back up DVD Disk.

    Let me just put it this way, Micro Soft  screwed up Big Time, Win8 is like Win ME and Vista, total garbage, as far as desktop PC's are concerned.

    The lack of such a simple thing as the START Button is a complete slap in the face to all loyal MS Windows user's. And as far as SecondLife is concerned you will more than likely need to run it in Compatibility Mode for Win7 or XP.

    So you are stuck with 3 choices, learn how to get around in Win8 ( the learning curve is steep ) Downgrade to Win7 ( that's a free-bee ) or simply install a very small and simple Open Source Win8 enhancement. Classic Shell !!!  

     This will return your Start button to the horrible Win8 start up screen, and get you back to normal !

     And while I'm at it, WTF is up with LL, the official User Group Meetings, they have been cut down to just 4, Nyx, Andrew, Oz and Maestro Linden. See for yourself at...

    Ya know what ?  I guess I can't really complain, SL only cost me about 90$ US real life money a year.

    And what's up with Rod Humble ? He seems more concerned with developing mindless game's designed for children than taking care of the SL platform, people are quitting or getting fired left and right every week at LL

    I'm at the point I really don't care any more. Have you looked at the concurrency rate lately, usually there are no more than 50,000 users on line at peak hours. Hell I have seen it as low as 20,000. And to top it off abandoned land seems to be heading for a field day.

    Let's face it the Lab needs to lower Tier Price's, PLAIN AND SIMPLE !!

JayR Cela

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

SecondLife :Setting Up FireStorm in Phoenix Mode

By Avatar JayR Cela

     It was recently officially announced that the ever popular Phoenix Viewer was no longer under active development. Now for some people this seems as a major setback, at least for them. Personally I have been using FireStorm full time for about the past year, but I have to admit it took a while for me to make the final switch. If you happen to be a Die Hard Phoenix user, you really owe it to yourself to at least give FS a try, after all the same wonderful people that worked so hard to make PH the kick ass viewer that it is today, are the same people that have gradually brought FireStorm to the point that changing over from one to the other is worth at least trying it out for yourself.

    Anyway's I thought for today's post it might be fun to do a walk through of setting up FS in Phoenix mode. I admit I have not tried this myself yet, so.  Let's get started :_)

Open FireStorm and once the welcome screen loads you will want to click on the drop down Default Settings tab at the bottom of the screen.

    Select Phoenix, a notice will pop up that you need to  Quit and Restart.


     As you can see, we now have the standard blue colored classic V1.x  mode activated. Next up you can choose either to Log In, or work your way through the various Preferences Menu's. Just to put the mind of Phoenix users at ease, I'm going to walk through these with you, I think you will find they are not all that much different from what you have become used to.

    The opening General preferences should be familiar to everyone by now.  The Away Time Out and Log Out After Being Marked Away are drop down selection area's where you can set to Never or a certain amount of minutes. Next we will go into the Chat Tab, and here you will want to pay close attention to the first sub-tab General, look down at the bottom of this page.


     You have a choice here : Show IMs In : Separate Windows or Tabs   ( requires restart ) if you want a true Phoenix experience select the Tabs option, don't worry about restarting the computer until you are completely finished with all the Preferences Settings. Next you can choose wither or not you would like the IM tabs to display Vertically or Horizontally. that is a mater of personal taste, myself I hate the Vertical option.

    The rest of these sub-tabs are pretty much self explanatory. So lets move on.

    I would imagine that you should be getting a little more comfortable right about now, most of, if not all of the features you have come to know and love in the Phoenix Viewer are available in FireStorm as well, the only real difference is that the arrangement is different.

     Everything is here, plus a few extra's. You'll just have to look around for the particular functions you wish to apply.

    While this post may seem boring, I think it is important to be prepared. Because as things stand right now, sometime early next year LL is going to throw the switch ! And when that happens, The Phoenix Viewer will no longer function properly in SecondLife !

    So you may as well start getting ready now.

JayR Cela :_)

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

SecondLife : Project Sun Shine : The Lab To Fix Avatar Bake Failure's : Big Server Side Changes Scheduled For February

By Avatar JayR Cela

    I'm sure a lot of folk's out there in SL Avatar Land will be happy to hear this news. You know when you try to log in and are stuck as a cloud, or are grey, or your Avi's textures keep getting blurry and you are constantly forced to do the Rebake Textures routine. Well some time in mid February the LL server team will be doing a major overhaul on the SL servers. Officially called Project Sun Shine ( or Server Side Baking ) Removing the current burden of having the Viewer do the Bake routine for avatar textures, is being moved Server Side.

    In other words, all the heavy lifting burdens that control your avatars textures coming into view will be removed from the SL Viewer, and be placed under the control of the Server Hardware instead. Using tried and true HTTP as opposed to the current unreliable UDP protocol to send the necessary information out to the client. This is a huge change in the Client to Server communication relationship, and I believe
( Hopefully - cross's fingers - Lol ) that after a few initial hiccups, it will make all of our experiences in SL much more enjoyable for everyone.

    However it will also entail some major code rewrite's on the Client side of things as well. What does that mean ? Viewer 1.x pretty much will be almost complete history, V1.23.5 if you are still using it simply will cease to work as will the Phoenix viewer, the reason being that neither one of them are no longer being actively developed. But you will have some choice's if you are a died in the wool V1.x user, Henri Beauchamps Cool Viewer, and Siana Gearz of Singularity both of which are V1.x based Client's, should be OK. I say this with about 90% confidence because so far both of them have miraculously somehow managed to back-port just about every V3 feature currently available so far, and they are both very dedicated to the V1.x platform. If for some reason neither chooses to do so, FireStorm has an excellent V1 skin available. If you are a rabid Phoenix user, forget about it !  The Phoenix / FireStorm team is no longer developing for the former any longer.

    This also means that all of the current V3 based TPV's will need to comply with the correct updated code, and  ingrate it into their current offering's, or they simply will not work any longer. Once the final Server Upgrade hit's the Main Grid full time, you will be forced to update, wither you like it or not !

    Now before you panic and scream out Oh Shit ! DON'T !

     LL is working very closely with all of the TPV's in order to make sure things go as smoothly as possible. Everyone want's to make this work, especially LL, they simply cannot afford to piss off so many customers still devoted to using V1.x Client Software, as is evident here. This picture was taken yesterday at Nyx Lindens office hours meeting.


    I have never seen so many Lindens and TPV - Dev's together in the same place together at once, EVER !  And this was just at the start of the meeting, the place really got packed as the discussion's progressed.  Zoom in on the photo and just see how many names you can recognize, all of the Who's Who involved with SL development were there, including Oz Linden.

    If you are currently using the stock LL SL Viewer, you have absolutely nothing to be concerned about, all other SL residents really owe it to yourselves to view this recent Phoenix / FireStorm Hour originally broadcast live December 15 by Jessica Lyon, Product Manager of the PH / FS team. She did an excellent job of putting everything into lay-mans terms. You can watch the archive here.

    If you are a staunch Phoenix user, please read her prepared explanation as to why the PH project has been terminated as well.

    In closing, I would like to add this. No matter what Viewer you consider to be your favorite, join their User Group, sign up on their Blog Post, join their Forums and get actively involved !

JayR Cela :_)

Saturday, December 15, 2012

SecondLife : Rolling Your Own Multiple Sim Cross Border Teleport Device

By Avatar JayR Cela

     I have 3 homes located on the Mallard River in SL, all of them adjacent to one in other. One is my personal place the other two are rentals. There are also 2 boat slips and an area for jet ski's my renters can keep their personal watercraft moored or relax in a romantic spot underneath my raised Living and Conference Rooms.

     The only problem is since although all 3 homes are adjacent to one in other they lie in two separate Sims, ( Mallard, Buckler ) worse yet is that, the homes locations are  almost exactly on the corner of a third Sim also, so its like. ( Orwood, Mallard and Buckler ) As any old time SecondLifer knows crossing from one Sim to another on a 3 Sim corner location usually results in you flying off into the distance somewhere. I first tried building a short bridge in order for my tenants to easily be able to simply walk across to the boat slip area, not much luck with that idea, people kept ending up in limbo land stuck somewhere between the Sim corners.

    The obvious solution was to just have my tenants simply create a LM and and place it on their Favorites Bar,  ( A V3 based Viewer only feature ) but I wanted to install a TP device for them and their guests to have easy access too. The only problem is most all TP devices in SL are intended to work within 1 Sim and 1 Sim only, finding one capable of crossing you into another Sim proved to be a bit more difficult, especially with the corner location problems mentioned above. So I started searching around in SL at various gadget shops, finding units ranging from 150L$ to 2000L$ in price and 3 to 15 prims each, some of them even requiring that you needed 1 unit on each end, departure and destination. After contacting several of the developers I was told that because of the The Lab's SL server architecture structure there would be no guarantee's due to the corner sim crossing problem.

    I turned to a good friend of mine who is pretty handy with writing LSL script code. His idea was to place two 1 prim units on each end. Sounded reasonable enough to me, but alas after several days of his writing, adjusting and testing the code, we could get it partially working, but the dam corner location problem kept seeming to cause all kinds of oddball problems and difficulties.

     Hmmm, I decided to start Goggling for SecondLife scripting libraries, searching for free Telaport scripts, and their are a boat load of them out there, sadly not many devoted to Cross Sim Teleportation, or multiple  sim borders. Eventually I found one written by SL resident  Sheena Desade, developed in April 2012 and later updated in May by Donjr Spiegelbatt called the,

  After an entire evening of fooling around with it, the best results I could achieve were, I was able to TP from one Sim to another all right, but the locations were never correct. I was just about to give up on the idea, but decided to try contacting another good SL friend of mine who is a well know script writer, and see if she had any suggestions or knew of any easy to use free-bee scripts that may be available. She recommended the same one mentioned above. I explained that I had been working with it already and described the wrong destination location difficulties I was experiencing. She told me that the problem was more than likely the way I was parsing the location note-card, incorrect spacing between characters or what not. Sure enough she was right. After giving several more try's my new 1 prim TP device now works perfectly.

So today I will give you a step by step walk through of how to set one of these up properly. Here we go. Please note that in order for this to work you must have a Nearby Chat Window opened.

Step 1. go-to

  Step   2. Download the script ( Copy and Paste does not always work with certain LSL scripts )
  Step   3. Open it with either Wordpad or LSLEdit or a Mac, Linux equivalent text editor.
  Step   4. Edit the first Line under Optional Settings. You can change the string Hover Text to something that better suits your chosen device's description, and  better suits your needs.

 24 // ******** OPTIONAL SETTINGS **********
 25 string hoverText    = "Sim-to-Sim Pseudo Teleporter - click for destinations.";
 26 integer menuWait    = 30;       // How long to wait for the user to pick a menu choice
 27 integer menuChannel = -14469;   // what channel for the object to 'listen' on.
 28                                 // You can change this channel as needed,
 29                                 // it's not calling out to an object outside of itself.
 30 string menuText = "Please select your destination:";
 31 string itemDataNotecard = "Data";
 32                                 // The name of the notecard to read from
 33 // ******** END OF OPTIONAL SETTINGS **********

                                                   In my case it was changing .

 25 string hoverText    = "Sim-to-Sim Pseudo Teleporter - click for destinations.";
  25 string hoverText    = "Teleport To Boat Slip Area's.";

Step    5. Save your edited file to desktop or somewhere you will remember and Start SL
Step    6. Open your inventory and select New Script, open that and delete the default Hello World portion

    Copy and paste the file you just finished editing  into the now blank script, save it back into your SL inventory and rename to something appropriate if you choose to. Please take note of Lines  31 and 32 in the Optional Settings section above describing the name of the note-card you will be creating later. (  By the way, it is case sensitive ) 

Step    7. Create an 1 prim object click on Edit open the Content Tab and drag a copy of your revised script there.

Step    8. Go to the locations in SL that you will be wanting to TP to, write the X,Y,Z coordinates down, and the name of the SL Sim as well.

Step    9. Open you inventory and create a new blank note-card. now you are ready to Name your Destination(s) name(s) ( You Can use what ever name you have chosen it does not matter ) then be sure to add a space before you type in the separator symbol  |  ( this is located directly above the Enter key on your keyboard and can be chosen by pressing the Shift and backslash \ key ) Insert another space and type in the name of the Sim ( remember it is case sensitive ) add another space then the @ symbol add another space and then your X,Y,Z coordinates separated with the forward slash symbol. Save it to your inventory and rename it to Data

    Please remember you must add spaces where appropriate, your final note card should look something like this

    Step  10. Open your inventory and locate the new note-card, click on your object select Edit then open the Content Tab, now drag and drop the copy of your Data note-card into Content(s)


    After that, your pretty much finished, just a matter determining the shape and texture you desire. Here is what I came up with.

   A 1 prim pseudo teleporter, really in all reality it is a  temporary  Land Mark Giver. So it is important  that your Chat Bar History Floater is Open ! That is were the temp LM will be displayed. One click on the Device, one click on the Menu, and then another on the LM address in your open Chat Bar History Floater.

    And Poof !!!!! / here I am right where I want to be :_)

     And a slightly modified copy placed at the end of the peer brings me right back in the same area I started from, either the front entrances of Rental 1 or Rental 2.

    Being the fact that this script circumvents the usage of LSL calls that perform the function of getting an Avatar from one place to another via LSL call's ( llPos, warpPos, PosJump etc..) and a number of other things I have absolutely no knowledge of,   It simply generates a temporary LM from your Data note card, in an opened Nearby Chat Bar Window and it must be visible.  because I'm not a Scripter . ( I can not program my way out of a wet paper bag ) Lol :_)  I had to read the entire script a number of times, only to find the comments left by the original  programmers to be somewhat arcane and difficult to understand to say the least.

    Having lived here for about 6 years, I found this tool to be very useful in solving  a long standing problem. ( At least for me ) I can think of several other useful this tool can do, for Instance Cathy my SL partners house in located on a private island estate, far away from being anywhere near my mainland places. So I set up one in her Living Room to take us directly to our boat or romantic riverside area.

 My hope is this step by step walk through, and small story of past frustration trying to fix it might prove to be useful for you too.

It can be downloaded here

JayR Cela :_)