Viewer news has been decreasing, at least in my opinion. Most of 2014 I’ve been writing about Firestorm catching up with the SL Viewer and we still aren’t there. Firestorm is basically on a quarterly release plan. So, there is only infrequent news to report in the Firestorm regard.
Cool VL Viewer and Singularity serve what I perceive to be an increasing smaller audience of the Version 1 interface users. I’m not saying their user count is decreasing. As users on older computers move away from Firestorm and the SL Viewer their user numbers may increase for a time. But, I think that will change as time passes. And SL2 is likely to be a final nail…
The fans of third party viewers generally follow the viewer developers’ blogs. So, I think the need for news on these viewers is decreasing. Mostly I am less interested in the viewer changes happening now and that makes it hard for me work up the energy to cover them.
There are plenty of Fashion and Travel blogs. So, I won’t be trying to cover fashion or new places in Second Life, unless I find some thing or place I find really interesting.
The hype is 2015 is to be a breakout year for VR. I tend to agree with several people that 2015 is not going to be much more than a set of early releases and first attempts. In other words lots of Beta stuff. While Oculus has been rumored to be releasing this year, and it may, they seem to be developing and licensing the early tech to others while developing a release that matches their dream. 3D sound and better responses for less simulator sickness seem to be their obvious goals. So, we may see the year pass with Oculus tech appearing without a retail Oculus release. And what is Facebook planning?
Virtual worlds are not written in months or years. Linden Lab may get a new world out in a bit more than a year, but probably longer. I’m not sure the headsets and worlds will come together as final polished products in 2015. Those that do make it out in 2015 are likely to be early knockoff attempts lacking the full immersion the industry believes is possible or Beta versions, which I expect from the Lab.
I think it is going to be like the 4k TV’s being sold now. What one buys today will likely have to be replaced to work with the standards being developed for 4k video, which since undefined now cannot be built into TV’s today.
Plus there are Net Neutrality issues that may mess things up. People are buying into the propaganda from both sides without examining facts, agendas, history of the parties involved, or the written proposed laws. Whatever the case, it looks like Obama’s version/plan will be imposed by the FCC and enforced under 1930’s law and concepts in spite of grassroots opposition from high information voter pressure on the FCC and Congress. A Whitehouse circumvention of Congress and the people’s will appears to be the next step in this battle. Implementation of Federal control via 1930’s laws to implement the Whitehouse agenda is probable for 2015.
We need market freedom and creativity because streaming 4k video is likely going to place huge demands on net bandwidth some time in 2016. With the new high video demands placed on the net virtual worlds like SL, SL2, Hy-Fy, and others may not be able to maintain even the performance they have now without new technology, which is why the current 4K TV’s are obsolete before they are sold.
A tsunami of technical decisions have to be resolved in the near future, hopefully 2015, to deal with the new coming demands on the network. With the government getting evolved we are likely to see Internet infrastructure things stall. We can hope the industry will find ways around the expected FCC restrictions/control and see reasons to invest in new net infrastructure. Otherwise, the US net infrastructure is likely to fall even further behind. That limits advances to the software side, which may be adequate… or not.
So, on one hand we have wonderful new tech arriving this year and on the other it looks like more government control that may stall everything. But, without Harry Reid providing cover for Democrat politicians and the Whitehouse by refusing to allow votes on controversial issues in the Senate and thus never letting those get to the Whitehouse, he has effectively stalled/blocked the legislative process. Amazing people have blamed the Republicans for the block. With Harry Reid out of control of the Senate we the people may get our voice back. But, I’m not sure how much better, if better, Sen. Boehner may be. He claims to not be an establishment man… but he sure looks like one to me. But, grassroots pressure already seems to be having an effect. So, we may see things stalled for 6 years start to move.