Updated 10:30 PM PDT – Various revisions and additions that change the tone and meaning of several points previously made.
Today there is a new post on the Emerald blog announcing the end of the Emerald Viewer, a final release version and then the coming blocking of the viewer by Linden Lab.
See: The End (dead link)
It’s over. Bummer.
The current in progress viewer is going to be released. We can see what the team has developed and added. That should be interesting. But, they are hinting that at some future time LL will block Emerald Viewers. We have no idea when that may be or even that it is for sure.
Jessica Lyon posted her resignation from the Emerald team here: My Resignation from Emerald
Apparently a mutiny occurred within the Emerald team and resulted in a coup attempt. The three members required to leave the team were; Lonely Bluebird/Phox, Skills Hak and Discrete Dreamscape. Skills and Discrete stepped down. Jessica says Lonely refused. Part of the team discussed among theirselves how to remove Lonely (a mutiny?). Lonely was able to lock others out of the servers. (A blocked coup?) We also hear Fractured applied for trademark rights to the Emerald Viewer name, which happened some time ago (months?) as I recall. So, trademarking may not figure in the recent attempted coup. The lockout effectively blocks the locked out members from doing any work on or verifying anything in regard to the Emerald Viewer version 2600. (The version number 2600 has special significance, Google 2600 Hacking.)
Additionally, there is a Linden time line requirement to release a new viewer by September 3rd. This would have to be one the 3 named members did not participate in compiling. With most of the team locked out this is not possible… the coming release announced for today cannot be verified as safe by other members of the team. Not good. The viewer could be a parting shot at getting even… or it could be a legitimate viewer. We just have no way to know.
Regardless, version 2600 has been put up for download. See: (dead link)
Alphaville Herald has more information in Emerald Developer Lonely Bluebird Interview.
Alphaville Herald also published: Emerald Gang Implodes – Viewer Ban Hammer Next?
Jessica responded to a note card circulating in SL: Response to Arabella’s notecard – some of the chat logs show how differently people see the issues. While I suspect there is sarcasm in some comments in the logs, it is hard to tell.
Jessic also posted the requirements Linden Lab sent to the Emerald team. See: What were the requirements exactly? Rumor is LL required the team to keep the information confidential… and that the original requirements did appear briefly on the Emerald blog.
There are also a bunch of Emerald Point meetings recorded and uploaded to YouTube.com. See TOBSDA’s Channel
We know that trust has become a major issue for Emerald Users and Linden Lab in regard to the Emerald team and viewer. Recent interviews with Jessica and Arabella have answered some questions but raised other doubts. Recent blog posts show those two see things differently. Also, Jessica’s description of events and Arabella’s have differences.
Today’s post by Jessica revealed that Linden Lab required 3 members of the Emerald team be removed from the project. Arabella states Linden Lab knew this would kill the Emerald team. It also implies that the team has known this since they received the requirements from LL. But, that particular issue in an Emerald life or death context has never been brought up until now, which again seems to go back to trust and transparency.
The chat logs also reveal Phox/Lonely likely believes LL can’t afford to block the Emerald viewer. He might be right. However, I would not put money on it. I’ve seen plenty of ‘rage quits’ in other games and find it is usually more talk than action. Time will reveal whether this is true or not.
It seems handling users is so much of the Emerald team’s culture some are unaware of when they do it or can even conceive of how to trust users. That we are just now finding out about what the team thought was a death sentence in the requirements does not speak well for moving toward open and transparent. Oh and did you catch the three names coming from the official announcement? No, just Jessica’s personal blog.
Whatever the case, the team could obviously not talk LL out of the requirement for those members to leave. I can understand LL’s position. It is the team’s choice to close down. That Lonely would not step down shows the infighting is not over.
A few Emerald Viewer fans are planning a protest. I’m not sure what exactly they plan to protest or if they have even thought of what they hope to accomplish, much less protest. Protest the removal of programmers that were abusing the community, hacking Linden Lab corporate communications (Vivox), using the viewer to mount attacks on those that disagreed with them… right. I want to be in that protest, NOT.
Linden Lab will most likely block the Emerald Viewer after announcing the coming block and giving people time to switch to a different viewer. There is a rumor that version 2600 has the ability to appear as any viewer the user choses. This would make it harder for LL to block the viewer.
So, the question is… is it possible to change the viewer ID? It appears it is. In Advanced -> Debug Settings -> EmeraldChannel is a setting that ID’s the viewer as Emerald Viewer Release. One could change this to My Personal Viewer. If one impersonates another named viewer, say the SL viewer, and gets caught it could be a problem. Again, LL is usually more concerned about what one does with a viewer, like stealing content, as opposed to which viewer they use. But, we have no idea how pissed LL is about this issue. So, use the viewer and change its ID at your own risk. I only use it with an Alt that has no payment info.