AvaStar and Slink March 2018

AvaStar is at version 2.3-1 released 17 January 2018 according to announcements in the Blender-AvaStar group. In the products page where I download the file, it is labeled 2.3-2. The release is called a bug fix. It has 10 bug fixes and 4 improvements. See the changelog here. Notice the Dev Kit manager…

Blender is currently at version 2.79a. The Blender download is here. The Portable version is the version I use so I can have multiple versions installed. I’ll explain why later.

Blender Download March 2018

Today I see Slink released an update to their Dev Kit for AvaStar. I find the email got to me yesterday 3/19. It tells me, “The bodies in these kits have been reworked from the ground up, for better geometry, more accurate weighting and better fit!” (Emphasis is theirs.)

Also, Slink Development now has a Discord Server for developers. The link is in the email. Siddean is available 9 to 5 Eastern Australian Time… Australia has 13 time zones… O.O  so… divide by 13 then 24 and multiply by… and turn the world around once… and that gives us 4pm to 12AM SLT/PT. Technically, they are 17 to 18 hours ahead of California, depending on Daylight Saving Time. If it is Monday here it is likely Tuesday there.

If it weren’t for the International Date Line they would be 5 to 6 hours behind California.  Continue reading

AvaStar Videos 2018

The people at Machinimatrix are asking what tutorials are needed for the new AvaStar 2 (now v2.1.1). They are planning to start producing new videos. So, this is your chance to suggest what is needed.

Machinimatrix: What videos are needed most ?

Building a snowman

Building a snowman

We are going into video production again. However, this time we want to make the videos on demand and not on what we think is needed. So here is your chance to influence what videos we will create first.

AvaStar News 2017 w48

Loki Elliot has been running a series of articles titled AvaStar Unleashed (now part 7). The articles appear when Loki gets to it, meaning not a regularly published thing.

In this one, he has found a problem…

For sometime, Loki has been frustrated with AvaStar as it wasn’t doing what he wanted… or it maybe he just wasn’t doing things as AvaStar was designed to do them. I haven’t dug deeply enough into his workflow to know. But, I have been in the same place a number of times finding it was more me than AvaStar.

Frozen in time

Frozen in time

Often how we work and how AvaStar is designed to work conflict. The best way to resolve such issues is in the Blender AvatStar in-world group. Filing trouble tickets on the AvaStar site is great for reporting bugs. But, not that great for getting feedback. Feedback comes best from the in-world group.

In the current article, Loki has found the math precision problems that creep into Blender work from repeated operations on a model. He has a GIF image that shows the progression and eventual distortion. Continue reading

AvaStar 2.1 Released 10/1

Yay! We have a final release version, 2.1. The official announcement is here: AvaStar 2.1.

The price for 2.1 is:

  • Upgrade from AvaStar-1 for just 3500 Linden$ (or 14 US$)
  • Get a new license for just 6500 Linden$ (or 27 US$)

Lindens are going for L$265/US$1 as I write this. $L6,500/265=US$24.53 or is that L$265 x 27 for L$7,155? Whether $24 or $27, it is worth it.

If you are undecided about purchasing, I recommend you do. AvaStar saves one work on a number of tedious tasks required to get mesh working in SL as it does in Blender …or maybe turn that around… and handles some hidden gotchas in the SL design process. Save time and reduce your learning curve, buy it.

I use it… maybe that is a good thing… For animation and modeling of things going to SL, I think it is great.

AvaStar 2 RC-14 is Out

When I saw the announcement for the final release of AvaStar 2.0, I hadn’t noticed the RC-14 version is out, which was me being a bit slow considering the video I posted. Check your AvaStar Products Page for the download.

I won’t get to play with it today. But… soon.

The release notes are here. The big change is in BVH import and export. Bone translations now work. The IK controls for the hands change.

There are other minor improvements and some fixes.

Word is Sparkles will update with or just after AvaStar 2.0 releases.

AvaStar 2.0 – Sept 30?

AvaStar is thinking they will release AvaStar 2.0 around the end of September… yes, 2017.

I like the AvaStar developers and support people. But, I’ve decided they are way too susceptible to feature creep. Fortunately, they release RC versions that keep us going.

If you are using Blender, there is nothing equal to AvaStar for Second Life developers. If you are new to SL development, AvaStar is the one tool that can reduce your learning curve significantly. Well worth the cost.

With Bento out, animation for SL became way more feature rich. I expect we will start to see animations labeled in ways similar to how we label clothes; Maitreya, Belleza, Slink, and etc. compatible.

Facial animations are likely to be the most problematic, as we are sensitive to even the smallest imperfections in facial expressions.