New Kokua Viewer Debuts

Kokua Viewer

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The Imprudence Team is building a new series 2 viewer based on the new Linden Lab Viewer 2 code. Wednesday they released a test build of the Kokua Viewer. This is probably what many would consider Alpha version software. Before you run off to download it, read on.

First off, they are warning you that this viewer may do horrible things… shrink your male package or sag your breasts and fatten your butt while killing your pets and erasing your inventory and hard drive. Did I say this is a test viewer? It is a test viewer and may have some dandy bugs like you might find on the SyFy channel. I did not find any but you have been warned.

Code Base

This viewer is based on Snowstorm 2.4 code. The current SL Development Viewer is at 2.6.8. So, it is not the latest code. But, it has a bunch of code that SL Viewers don’t have. It is adapted to use newer features in OpenSim servers. The Grid Manager for instance is geared toward the Hypergrid. New protocols are being established for Hypergrid. So, the viewer will handle Secondlife:// SLURL’s and HOP:// URL’s. Of course the whole HOP:// URL’s thing may change and it is not completely implemented in OpenSim, but it is a start.

Inventory Issues

The SL inventory uses links. In an outfit there are no objects, shirts, skirts… whatever. An outfit has a pointer to the real shirt, a link. Not all grids support inventory links. If you use Kokua and outfit links on a grid that does not support them, you will have a problem. Presumably that will get fixed at some point.

Remember the Kokua viewer was intended to support the Aurora OpenSim branch and secondarily the SL grid. I’m not sure if that is still the goal. However, that suggests that we will see OpenSim issues getting fixed pretty quick.

World Map

There are some pretty… different… protocols for down loading map images. Not all grids support the new protocols. So, in some grids the map may be empty. Getting that fixed is pretty much up to the grid operators.

Download & Install

Download: Kokua Viewer for Second Life and OpenSim

The file size is about 35mb. The install has a couple of options. It installs in its own program folder. It creates its own cache folder. It creates its own settings and logs folder.

Experience

Once things downloaded I was getting 28 to 45 FPS in my cottage. Jumping over to Celtic Myst I get 6 or 7 FPS while the area downloads. I didn’t see a speed rez setting anywhere, I may have over looked it…. But things rez quickly. Once most things are downloaded I get 15 to 20 FPS. (Duel Core2 w/GTS8800)

All speeds are with Lighting & Shadows + Ambient Occlusion turned off and no Sun/Moon shadows.

The user interface reminds me of Kirsten’s S21 viewer. The sidebar hides unless you turn it on with a button on the bottom menu.

The viewer uses the older sidebar style profile rather than the web based profiles.

Kokua Viewer

View - Camera Control

The view menu/control is novel. They put all the controls into one nicely designed panel. Saves lots of clicks.

There is a mic control in the bottom menu. If you turn off voice, it remains and shows as disabled.

The top menu items are more series 1 style than series 2 style.

The Preferences panels are pretty much standard series 2 style. I use so many viewers now it is hard to say the arrangement of the panels is standard or custom. Let’s just say it seems rationally laid out. There is no Kokua tab. I expect one to show up in later versions. This is a test viewer and they are asking for feedback.

The build menu is sort of the SL Viewer 2 version. I expect that to change. No copy-paste dimensions or Build Math or Prim Alignment. SO, this is not yet the builder’s viewer that Imprudence is.

The WASD keys are set to do chat not movement by default. This can be changed in Edit → Preferences → General or Chat.

Kokua Viewer

Chat Dialog

The group chat window was annoying because I could not close the thumbnail and names section. With vertical tabs, which I really like, the chat dialog is getting too big.

Some panels, like inventory, get confused as other panels open. Some open under others. Trying to get the Inventory from bottom menu button and a copy from the sidebar button sorted out is confusing. Depending on what you are doing you can get both versions open. Closing them is tricky as things pop open and closed… Once you figure out what is going on its ok.

Breasts… well mine didn’t sag and my butt didn’t swell up, but neither do they bounce. While I can see the physics layer in inventory I can can’t wear those items or edit them. Nor do Physics Layers show in the new clothing item menu. But, bouncy features were not introduced until version 2.6.3 in the SL Viewers.

The texture decoder is: J2C Decoder Version: OpenJPEG: 1.4.0.565, Runtime: 1.4.0.565. So, you might get a bit better performance from using the newer Kirsten version. But, if you want to help the Kokua team with testing you need to forego that change and stay stock.

Summary

The viewer does not have all the Imprudence features yet. That is a matter of time. As a test viewer it seems to be a good foundation. I used the Kokua 0.1.0 WIP (May  3 2011 16:46:29) viewer for an hour or two and nothing drastic happened to me. But, remember. It is a test viewer.

2 thoughts on “New Kokua Viewer Debuts

  1. Just a few little precisions:

    – This is not even close to alpha, it’s totally just a test build.
    – We will be rebasing on 2.6.x for the next builds, so we can hope for bouncing tahtahs soon.
    – We should really be defaulting on WASD controls. As a gamer i hate the current default.
    – You can direct suggestions and report annoyances or glitches at http://redmine.kokuaviewer.org
    – Thanks a lot for reviewing it, your feedbacks are much appreciated

    Codie, community liaison for the Imprudence Team

    • Thanks for the clarifications 🙂 I appreciate your time to read and add them.

      I am looking forward to this viewer becoming my main viewer for OpenSim. I have far too many problems using the SL Mesh Project viewer in OSGrid. It is a test/Alpha viewer so that is to be expected, but the Lab is not targeting OpenSim. As much as I like Kirsten’s viewer I’ve started running into appearance problems on OSGrid. So, Kokua is my hope for a great viewer that works well in both sets of worlds.

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