26:50 – Question: Narei Mooncatt said… I won’t be able to attend, but I wanted to offer my concern, which I’m sure many have. On the newest Phoenix release with ultra settings (minus shadows) at my home, I can get over 40 FPS. Sometimes pushing 60 FPS. On Firestorm, I was lucky to hit 25 with settings that were less than ultra and still no shadows. So my question to you would be are there any plans to address the performance of future viewers so they are closer to what is being achieved in Phoenix? I understand the additions of things like shadowing effects can be a performance killer, but I’m talking about doing an apples to apples comparison of the settings.
And as a second question, are there any plans to make a new viewer with an interface more like Phoenix? After looking at Firestorm and trying to make it look more like Phoenix, it still just felt clunky and confusing. Not to mention the lack of skinning options (I love the metalic purple on Phoenix).
Jessica tells us that mesh is creating a performance hit across the board. All mesh viewers have taken the hit. The problem is in the new render pipeline the Lab built to handle mesh.
The FS-PH Team does not have anyone capable of working on the render pipeline. It is a highly complex and specialized section of computer code. Jessica says the Lab only has 1 or 2 people that work with the render pipeline.
Everyone is aware there is a performance problem. The Lab is working on it. There is not much the FS-PH Team can do about it. They are dependent on the Lab to fix this problem.
Also, it is not just mesh that is the problem. Even in the new Viewer 2 the pipeline used older OpenGL versions. New graphics cards and updated OpenGL code have new processes for doing what the render pipeline does. Many of the older functions in OpenGL that the Lab used have been depreciated, just as the V1 viewer is being depreciated. The Lab has had to go in and update their code to use the new cards and OpenGL. Those problems are in the mix too.
I will point out that the Dev Viewer 3.2.6- (246889) I downloaded yesterday is faster than the previous versions I have been using. While I was happy to see 10 to 20 FPS with the previous versions I see 15 to 30 FPS with this version.
The second question, and several others asked the same one, is whether or not Firestorm will have a more Phoenix-V1-like interface. Jessica says that is what they are working to do. Firestorm users will have a choice of Phoenix interface or a V3 or Firestorm interface and possibly some custom Flexible UI.
? – Question: (too long to quote) Jagg said… (sort of) FS-PH support provides frustrating help. An example is given where 3 different support people gave answers that frustrated the user. Jagg’s take is support just wants to get rid of the user, not help them. Jagg also believes support people do not care enough to be bothered find real answers.
I think this question from the blog was skipped… no answer on the video. I will point out that it is not only the FS-PH Team that is answering questions in the FS-PH Support Group. Residents offer answers too. Occasionally I will answer questions in the group. So, people with various levels of expertise are answering questions.
The most reliable and consistent answers are in the FS-PH wiki. The wiki provides great technical information about the FS-PH viewers. My only criticism of the wiki is they provide little information for the multi-viewer users. They have their hands full supporting their viewers, so I think that is understandable. Plus it gives me a niche for this blog.
I think Jagg exhibits what a I consider the classic signs of a whiner that attributes motives to people and things unknown to Jagg.
32:25 – Question: Chrome Runner said… 1st complaint: In none of the Phoenix releases I got music and/or video to play. Not to speak of voice. (Besides that it’s almost a good viewer.)
2nd complaint: I was reading about the bugs that have been fixed in the latest FS release. Actually, all the bugs I suffered in the beta release are still there, and the rest got even worse. I can’t really use FS at its current state.
3rd complaint: We had to wait quite a long time for the release of FS, and now it’s such a messy piece of software. Even the beta was better, and not even the new GUI of LL’s viewer 3.2.x made it in the new FS.
Question: Do you think you will have a Linux developer join your team? Especially one for the popular Ubuntu?
Btw: In 2010, I only had three crashes with Emerald, but since then, with Phoenix, I had countless crashes!
Jessica says support can help you get sound and media working. With 400,000± users and all their different hardware it just is not possible for them to have everything working on all possible hardware. They try.
I’ll say in response to the idea that Firestorm is a mess… it is a house under construction. There is dust everywhere. It is a bit of a mess, no doubt. Considering the amount of work done to get this far and that it is done by unpaid volunteers: it is an amazing piece of work. Looking at the framing, wiring, plumbing, and parts that have been put in place one can see construction heading in a good direction. Complaining about the dust on the floor as work is being done is ridiculous.
Jessica points out: the viewer is a work in progress.
As to the Ubuntu Linux… Jessica points out they do have Linux programmers on the team. If you know a Linux programmer that is willing to work for free on a project like Firestorm while people yell at them… send them to Jessica.
37:10 – Question: (I didin’t catch name) said… (sort of) Will there be a V1 style appearance editor in FS. Or is V2 appearance editor the only option?
Jessica explains the original V1 appearance panel has all the appearance settings in one panel. In V2/3 appearance was divided into separate panels. Jessica doesn’t like it. Many people don’t.
It has become obvious that preference in this process is a matter of what one learns first. Once one relearns how to handle appearance in V3 it isn’t that bad. The relearning is a pain and that is where the rub is. Get past it and you’re set.
Jessica explains that such a change in appearance editing is a complex change. It will take a lot of work to revise the appearance editor and probably introduce a number of new bugs. So, this is not a change the team will make until the viewer is much more mature and stabile. So, while the answer is basically: may be some day, it won’t be anytime soon.
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