There isn’t much happening on this project. But, there is lots of talk. Oz Linden is talking with management about assigning staff to the project. That discussion should be happening this Friday. Next week we will learn whether he got the help he wants.
In the mean time new people have been posting in the JIRA item STORM-1716 – Mesh Deformer for tailoring mesh clothing. This has become a rather large JIRA entry. So, users are getting hit with the problem the Lindens had, the thread is just too long to read. The result is important information is over looked by the people just joining the discussion. They are clueless and that annoys those that have followed the project for the last year. That results in lots of bickering and short tempers.
The thread is a good example of why the Lindens made the JIRA Change and closed down the BUG Reports and JIRA in general. Just try to get the latest information out of the 1716 thread. It is a pain and it doesn’t work. I read the thing because I want to distill the information out, know what is happening, and hopefully keep my readers informed.
Qarl Fizz’s Sarcasm
There are times when sarcasm is useful and appropriate. Karl Stiefvater is a programmer and I am afraid his sarcasm may have been lost on the less geeky, more vociferous, and ignorant people in the thread.
Qarl Fizz added a comment – 07/Jan/13 12:33 PM
Guys –I just had an idea.
If, in addition to all the deformer parameters we currently have, we add a string value called “Description”. This parameter will describe how you wish for the mesh to behave with other meshes.
For example, you could say “this item is pants, I wish for it to be worn on the legs over underwear but under a jacket which may be worn on the top.”
The deformer will parse this string and follow the constraints it imposes.
This system is far superior to any system currently proposed. Furthermore, it allows for a completely new creation mechanism – you need only specify how you wish your mesh to appear “a white dress with a lacy top” and the deformer will produce exactly what you want.
I think Karl was getting annoyed by the thread. I am sure some people will miss the note of sarcasm and think that providing a text description of what their mesh is supposed to look like will allow the Deformer to create it. Ignorance is infinite. Unfortunately, the world doesn’t and especially computers don’t work that way.
What brought this on? New posters to the thread wanted to know why the Deformer doesn’t do various things they want and why it doesn’t over come their bad design choices, of which, as best I can tell, they are unaware.
We have already been through discussions on why it does what it does. We have already tried various solutions. Some failed and were removed… failed may be too strong. The code worked, but while some problems were solved others were created. We didn’t get the result we wanted.
Now we have what many of us consider the best version of the Deformer. It is in a Project Viewer and can be used to test the process. In my testing I am pretty happy with it. I’ll admit most of my testing is with skirts. Tops are going to be a pain to learn and do well. I’m not there yet.
You can find the latest version of the Deformer Project Viewer is 3.4.1 (267522). I have a link in the left column for the download. The link leads to a Nov 11th build as I write this, but it will automatically update to the latest version.
The current main viewer is 3.4.3 (268262). Lots of things have been added to the viewer since November. The Deformer has not changed. But, we do need to see how the code works with the latest updates to the viewer. I expect to see a new version next week (3) or the week after (4).
For making and testing deforming rigged mesh clothes one must use the latest version of the Deformer for the upload, I wrote Deformer not viewer. But, we don’t have version numbers for the Deformer. So, we are stuck with viewer versions. So, effectively we must either know the Deformer change dates or consider only deformable mesh uploaded with the latest viewer, regardless of whether there were changes to the Deformer’s specific code, useable for testing.
Anything uploaded using a viewer prior to the November build is probably unusable for testing. If you are designer, your stuff does NOT have to be remodeled for use with the newer viewer. It just needs to be uploaded once more with the latest project viewer.
Models made with much older versions of the ‘Deformer’ may need a special base model added. So, let me explain that.
Anything made and uploaded in September 2012 and before must be uploaded with a special process. Or the model has to be adjusted in Blender/3DS to fit the new process that uses variable base shapes. There is an easy way to do this.
Sometime after September the ability to associate a custom base shape with your rigged mesh upload was added. Anything uploaded without that option will NOT deform. The Deformer just won’t see it as deformable.
If you used Avastar, you will probably have some problems for models made before December 2012. They are not going to fit as well as you hoped because of problems with Avastar’s program. You may need to follow these steps too. That problem was fixed in about mid December. Just update your Avastar.
Since September one can now use an XML files exported from the viewer that contains the desired base shape. We simply wear the base shape in SL that we want to design for and export that shape.
To do that look in the menu: Advanced->Export appearance as XML. The resulting file can be placed in the folder with the DAE Collada file you export from Blender or 3DS for easy upload with your rigged mesh. I have other articles on how to get the shape into Blender. That is not important for this process.
Yes, there are permissions issues so it has to be a shape you have rights to. If you have been using the Default Shape for your design, you will be able to skip the next steps and just upload a new version using the option for default female or male. Then your model should work with the Deformer and fit all sizes.