Massively Closing?


It seems the gaming news site Massively is being closed down, in spite of a 40% per year readership growth rate. Click the link above to learn more.

I used to follow Massively’s section on Second Life. But, as SL coverage there decreased, so too did my interest in Massively. While I am not certain of the future of Massively (will someone buy it?), it seems doomed. If it does pass, I’ll feel the loss.

Oculus Rift Crescent Bay

The Road to VR CEO Brendan Iribe has announced Oculus releasing news of Crescent Bay, a new Oculus Rift prototype. The specs available are impressive but contain some speculation:

  • Higher Refresh Rate (confirmed as 90Hz)
  • Higher resolution (likely 1440p)
  • (Possibly) Higher FOV
  • Integrated Audio
  • 360 Degree Tracking (LEDs now on back of headset too)
  • Oculus licensed Real Space 3D Audio Specialisation (10 years in development)

Follow Road to VR for more breaking news  on Crescent Bay.

LEAP Motion Controller 2014-35

This hands free controller is thought by many of us to be the answer to how to deal with hand movement while wearing a HMD (like an Oculus Rift). Jo Yardley has an article on the progress LEAP Motion is making with their VR effort. See: Leap motion announces VR related progress. She includes a video LEAP made (1:30 min) and a link to the source article at LEAP Motion’s site.

Oculus Rift - Image by: Franklin Heijnen - Flickr

Oculus Rift – Image by: Franklin Heijnen – Flickr

Like many LEAP Motion controller owners, Jo does not use the controller often. Mine mostly sits in the box too. You can find LEAP controllers on eBay cheap. I am hoping that changes when the Oculus or another HMD unit go retail.  Continue reading

Understanding the Render Pipeline

This isn’t a Second Life specific article, but SL is all about getting our world rendered and concepts are similar in all rendered worlds. Arton Rotaru found the blog page and posted a link in the SL Forum. So, if your are curious and wonder how hard can it be to render a world? Then this is something for you.


Lost Eden 2014

Also, if you are a creative type and hopping to optimize your builds to reduce lag, there are concepts you will likely find interesting.

See: Render Hell 1.0 – For discussion see the SL Forum: A lovely explanation of how a Render Pipeline works.

On the blog the top video is just the author’s explanation of what is come and why he made the page.

The rest of the page is an illustrated text. Some illustrations are pictures. Others are short animations or videos.


Bits of News 2014-28 #2

Iris Ophelia has an article up on New World Notes (NWN) about her experience in the as yet unreleased SIMS-4. It is a long article for NWN. See: The Good, the Bad, and the Unclear: My First Impressions of The Sims 4 Create-a-Sim Demo. (Translating for non-SIMS people, Create-A-SIM means create an avatar.)

She writes about what she liked and didn’t. For instance the SIMS developers are going for a CG look not a photo-realistic look. Hats can be worn over hair… apparently any hat over any hair. I wonder how they did that? I would love to be able to wear hats with any of my do’s. Continue reading

The Change in MMO Appeal

Over at New World Notes Hamlet has an article up titled: The MMO is Dead; Long Live the MMO. He points us to an article over at Paste Magazine (site about entertainment). It has an article titled: The Moment of the MMO has Passed.

Playing Around

Playing Around

The author is writing about how the age of MMO’s (Massive Multiplayer Online) has passed. He feels that much of their popularity was from socialization. If you have read the study Longevity by n-Yuen Teng and Lada A. Adamic, that I often refer to, you’ll see how the two support each other. It seems social interaction is more the key to player retention than any other single factor in a game. So, I see the study as supporting the author’s thinking.

The author, Ian Williams, feels that while MMO’s once filled this niche for social interaction in our lives they now have competition and thus are not going to be as popular as they once were. He may have a point. Continue reading

Second Life and Hardware for Oculus

The Road to VR has an article up by Ben Lang: Two Reasons You Will Want to Buy a New Gaming Rig for the Oculus Rift CV1. Oh good, we are going to need new hardware for Oculus… Well, it isn’t all that bad. But, it is interesting the direction the Oculus will probably push hardware design.

Oculus Rift

Oculus Rift

Ben is pointing out that once the Oculus is near release or at release time, hardware makers will be releasing new hardware optimized for the Virtual Reality (VR) experience. Palmer Luck has been quoted as saying Oculus is working with hardware developers ‘…on all kinds of optimizations.’ He would say what those might be.

Ben tells us how Intel is looking at VR/Oculus. Randy Stude, of Intel, said, “The VR world can expect that engagement with Intel, from the top down, will be very deep.” Considering they make the CPU’s and HD graphics chips as well as the data controls chips (North and South bridge chips) their integration and optimization could be extensive. Continue reading

Second Life News 2014-23 – Group Ban

We have some actual news today!

Group Ban

This new feature is now running in the main grid in RC channel: Le Tigre. Many people have been looking forward to this feature coming out. If all goes well we could see it move to the entire grid next week.

Any group owner or manager with proper permissions can use the feature.  You need to visit a region in the Le Tigre channel to use the feature. Also you need to be using the Group Ban Project Viewer. Unfortunately the viewer is not showing on the RC/Project Viewers page. But, you can get the viewer here: Download: WindowsMacLinux.

You can find details on using the project feature here: Group Ban FAQ.

Be warned, the bans made in Le Tigre may not stick, meaning a banned person may be able to re-join from regions outside the Le Tigre channel. So, while the ban is server side older regions don’t know to check for a ban before allowing a join. But, the person will be in the ban list.

Once the project goes grid wide you may have to re-ban or eject the banned people one last time.

The server side code is at RC level, meaning it is working as planned and is expected to be the finished product. The viewer is just reaching ‘project viewer’ status, which we might consider the old beta version status.

Expect some changes to the viewer before it rolls out as the main viewer. When the server side code goes grid wide one can then use the Group Ban Viewer and ban people. Since the ban is enforced server-side and all the servers will then be running it, it won’t matter which viewer a banned person uses, they won’t be able to get in the group.

This should make life in group chat much better.


There was no roll to the main channel this morning. There was maintenance to the servers and logins were down for a time this morning.  Continue reading