8 hours ago
Wednesday, February 11, 2015
Eye on the Blog: "Check Out the Latest Improvements to Second Life"
One of the surprisingly difficult things to do in a virtual world is to make things come to rest in a natural-looking way. Keeping feet on the ground when standing and the right body parts on furniture seems obvious, but getting an avatar to "just touch" without either floating above or penetrating into the adjacent surface can be computationally quite expensive. To avoid some of that expense, Second Life has always used approximations, which rely on some simplifying assumptions about the avatar shape and size. Those assumptions are adjusted by a number of factors including several of your shape parameter choices, values included in attachments you are wearing, and active animations. As we've all seen, sometimes these things combine to leave you floating above or sinking into the surface on which intuitively you should be resting. This is because the adjustments come from many sources and sometime interact in unexpected ways. Because they have not always been applied in exactly the same order, even if you wear the same set of attachments in the same setting you could sometimes get different results.
The Lab explained they've been working on the problem and making tests with an experimental "Project Hoverheight Viewer," "This viewer, and some accompanying server changes, improve things in two ways: the order in which we make adjustments to your vertical position has been made more stable -- combining the same set of attachments and animations should now always produce the same vertical offset: even if it's not perfect, it will at least be predictable."
Users can make adjustments as it's still not perfect, which are visible to both the one adjusting and those around him/her. It's also notable the Lab gives credit to Team Firestorm, "This new feature was inspired by a proposal from the Firestorm viewer team, and they've been helping with testing it."
For the blog post in full, Click Here.