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Town Hall 5/8/03

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Forum Link: Original Posting

Creation Townhall: Thursday, 5/8/03
Feature Requests from Residents for Creation Toolset
You = Hunter Linden

IM: Jennifer Linden: Building, Scripting and Creating: Town Hall Meeting with Hunter at the Amphitheatre starting at 6PST! Put your 2 cents in for toolset improvements! IM me for a list!

You shout: Okay - give me a few sentences
You: Thanks to everyone for coming....
You: these townhalls are an important part of Second Life.....
You: and something we're really excited to share
You: i'll post a chat text in the forums so don't worry if you miss something
You: we're gonna do this one like the others ....
You: if you have a question
You: say "question" and then i'll call on you in order
You: and to make sure everyone gets a chance
You: the topic we want to talk about tonight is....
You: "Building and Creating"
You: What works for you, what doesn't?
You: going forward - what would you like to see added? Or changed?
You: I've heard about digital rights for textures being very important...
You: Also, what can be done to support you guys as the world gets larger and more diverse
You: James Linden will be our special guest....
You: to do the Q&A with you

James Linden: Hello, all
James Linden: I feel so formal, standing up here
James Linden: For those who haven't met me, I'm one
James Linden: of the engineers here at Linden
James Linden: I have worked on various parts of the system
James Linden: building/editing tools
James Linden: permissions
James Linden: networking
James Linden: etc etc
James Linden: Hunter, why don't we get started.
James Linden: I'm gonna try to sit down here.

You: great - ama, I believe you had a question

Ama Omega: Digital Rights for scripts are very important to us scripters, as well as textures and clothings, what are the plans / timelines for that?
James Linden: We've been thinking about digital rights for scripts/textures/clothing
James Linden: it's high on our priority list, too
James Linden: What specific things would you like to see?
James Linden: One approach would be something like what we have for objects
Ama Omega: Everything you could do with objects to be able to do with scripts ideally - modifiable, copyable or not
James Linden: but applied to "assets" (anything that can go in the inventory)
James Linden: Is there anything that should work differently?
James Linden: I'll keep typing during questions, if that's ok
James Miller: Maybe we can have it so you can read a script, or parts of a script, but, not save it to inventory and edit? maybe the same with textures?
Ama Omega: It would be -really- nice (I'm dreaming) if there could be a 'public' section of a script so even non modifiable ones could have some parameters changed. Otherwise though yeah what objects have would be cool
James Linden: Ama, we have in fact thought of that.
James Linden: The engineering effort is substantial, tho
Cyfin Kato: But if you can see it you can copy it
James Linden: There's also some complexity about objects that
James Linden: are not restricted, but contain assets that are restricted
James Miller: well, you wouldn't be able to control + c it
James Miller: you would have to sit there and type it out
James Miller: which is a pain
James Linden: We had thought about exporting certain variables.
James Linden: Like, you can see "distance" and type in a number.
James Linden: But I think the no-copy issue is the most important.
Dave Zeeman: agreed
Hiro Yamamoto: you could have a notecard or something in the inventory and have the variables in there and read from that?
Cyfin Kato: I think your Avatar should be able to have scripts
James Linden: Hiro that would be a good way to do it.

You shout: Great - Alexis had next question....
Alexis Fairchild: With all of the talk about digital rights for textures and such... that's good for future builds of the client... but what about the stuff currently inworld?
James Linden: That's a good question
James Linden: There's two ways to go
James Linden: Assume everything should work the way it does now (so
James Linden: keep stuff yes-copy)
James Linden: or assume everyone wants everything locked down (so convert everything to no-copy)
James Linden: What do you think?
Alexis Fairchild: James, you should never assume... you know what they say :P
James Linden: Yeah, I'd favor keeping things yes-copy
Alexis Fairchild: What I am referring to is like this...
James Linden: and letting builders lock down stuff they want to
Alexis Fairchild: I am opening up a photo studio here with pics I took in SL
James Linden: yes
Alexis Fairchild: Now, even with my no-modify, no copy set, someone can just hand out my pic to another person by dragging it out of inventory
James Linden: yup
James Linden: The idea would be to add a checkbox to inventory
James Linden: items that prevented the copy step
James Linden: That's what I mean by no-copy
James Linden: We'd probably also have to do something special
James Linden: with textures
Alexis Fairchild: But that doesn't stop dragging it out of inventory and handing it to someone
James Linden: Like, have the contents of the box contain a list of the textures
James Linden: Ah
James Linden: Yeah, that's a good point
James Linden: Like, I buy a box from you, but I can give it to a friend?
Alexis Fairchild: I would get 1 sale, but 50 avs could have my pic hanging in their homes
James Linden: Ahhhh
James Linden: But there would have to be a way to make a copy
James Linden: Digital rights management implies that
James Linden: we have a way to block the copying step
James Linden: Like, once it goes into inventory, you can't drag out a copy
James Linden: only the original
James Linden: One single, unique object, moving from world to inventory to world
James Linden: Which we can do
James Linden: But it's work, which is why it isn't done yet. :-)
James Linden: While we're taking questions, I have something I'd like folks to think about
James Linden: Lots of very high resolution textures take up lots of bandwidth and
James Linden: graphics speed.
James Linden: Any thoughts on keeping textures a reasonable size and number?
James Linden: I'll catch responses later.

James Miller: I am not quite sure if this is meant for this topic, but, what will Linden be doing to have more communities
You: James - please elaborate - in terms of grouping, or neighborhoods?
James Miller: well, I meant more like neighborhoods
James Miller: I feel the world is too....rural
James Linden: We're interested in giving groups better control of group-owned stuff
James Miller: and, its not always easy to get a group together, will Linden Lab be doing anything to push us in the direction
James Linden: But I can't give specifics quite yet
You: We'll do another townhall on governance since that's a big area
You: but it's a big priority for the versions immediately after 1.0
James Miller: OH! That reminds me! Will we be able to have group owned things? Such as objects and land? instead of a person owning it, a company could
James Linden: James, maybe.
James Miller: OK James
James Linden: Thats on my think-about plate for future versions
James Linden: Next?
James Miller: *Shoves a few more things onto the plate*

You shout: Skeedalee....
Skeedalee Skidoo: I would like to see building tools that have shapes for cutting out places there have been many advanced items i have to used 10 objects to make and could use one object if i could cut a shape out
James Linden: Ah, cutting out shapes.
James Linden: Yeah.
Skeedalee Skidoo: yes
Skeedalee Skidoo: would save on my total objects
James Linden: There's a reason we haven't done that yet. :-)
James Miller: I second this!
Alexis Fairchild: Good one Skee
Alexis Fairchild: I third this one
James Linden: Doing good boolean (and, or, plus, minus) on objects is tough
James Linden: especially when you are trying to be able to download
James Miller: two of the voices in my head have forthed and fifthed it
James Linden: them at a reasonable rate.
James Linden: Are there specific common cuts or holes that would be helpful? Like...
Skeedalee Skidoo: well maybe just having more cut options then hehe
James Linden: a pentagon hole or some such?
Skeedalee Skidoo: yes like cut out a square or hole
James Linden: Like cut for a door or window?
Skeedalee Skidoo: just simple shapes would help a ton
James Miller: square, hole, triangle
Skeedalee Skidoo: yes
James Linden: Maybe move the center of the cut around slightly?
James Miller: the cuts need to be sizeable and positionable tho
James Linden: Or center of the hole?
Skeedalee Skidoo: that would be helpful also
Catherine Omega: I have an idea on how that might work.

Lyra Muse: Question.. related to topic.
You: flashes back to pre-school - square peg, round hole
James Miller: well, maybe not positionable
James Linden: go lyra
Lyra Muse: Okay.
Skeedalee Skidoo: yeah square peg round hole!
Skeedalee Skidoo: lol
James Linden: That's a good idea.
James Linden: Note that down, Hunter.
Skeedalee Skidoo: well then i could build really advanced stuff alot easier
James Miller: Hunter, I usually used an exacto knife and sized the hole or peg down to get the fit
Lyra Muse: What would be neat is to have the ability to shift the holes position .. giving it it's own x, y or z axis..
Alexis Fairchild: Would make it easier to make windows in houses too
Dionysus Starseeker: Maybe just a center and a one side, then you only need two hole spaces, easier to program
Catherine Omega: I have a suggestion on this topic.
Lyra Muse: Then we wouldn't have to build multiple prims to get the right height.
James Linden: I think the first engineering step would be to try to move
James Linden: the hole over slightly
Zebulon Starseeker: Yes, having openings in Curved surfaces.
Dionysus Starseeker: That would kill object rez
James Linden: great suggestion guys
James Linden: Is there a forum thread on this yet?
Dionysus Starseeker: yep, I think so
Skeedalee Skidoo: i posted once i think but was a month ago
James Linden: Good
James Linden: I'll look it up
James Miller: Ive seen tons of them
Lyra Muse: Yeah, let's revive them.

You shout: Dave Zeeman - next question
Dave Zeeman shouts: I've got three questions, should I ask them all at once, or take my turns?
You shout: one and then we'll get back to ya
Dave Zeeman shouts: Macromanagement. Putting a single script on a bunch of unlinked objects at once is impossible to do right now.
Dave Zeeman shouts: This is what I really need though
Dave Zeeman shouts: Being able to edit a single script that spans across multiple unlinked objects
James Linden: hmm
Dave Zeeman shouts: Or at least being able to distribute a single script among multiple unlinked objects
James Linden: yeah, that could be useful, couldn't it
Dave Zeeman: Very!
Dave Zeeman: Especially for the projects I do.
James Linden: You'd want to be able to just edit one
James Linden: then push out the changes to all.
Dave Zeeman: This could really go for any of the contents pieces, such as textures and objects, but mainly what I need the most is scripts.
Dave Zeeman: Yes that would be helpful.
James Linden: Are the objects near each other?
Dave Zeeman: Yes.
Dan Linden is offline
James Linden: Near is a lot easier than far.
Dave Zeeman: I know there's a similar request but I'm not bringing that one up.
Dave Zeeman: I'm bringing up like, say, putting a script on an entire house.
James Linden: Specifically, multiple different sims is tough
James Linden: Would you be able to select all the items?
Dave Zeeman: Yes you would.
James Linden: Lemme note that one down.
Dave Zeeman: Like shift clicking to add specific objects, or dragging the selection box across a group of objects
Dave Zeeman: and dragging the script on that selection to get it to stick to all objects.
James Linden: I can think of ways to do it pretty easily for stuff you have selected
Dave Zeeman:
James Linden: Especially if you could guarantee, like,
James Linden: that the updated script had the same name as the old one
James Linden: OK, operations on groups of selected objects.
James Linden: Does anyone else have a strong need for this? Yes or no.
James Miller: Yes
Bel Muse: yes
Kensuke Leviathan: Dah
Lyra Muse: Yes.
Catherine Omega: Yes.
James Linden: I shoulda known better than to ask.
Cyfin Kato: Maybe not for that, But let scripts act upon another object like llSetPos(object ID)

Davada Gallant shouts: Subgames within Second Life could potentially be very interesting
Davada Gallant shouts: But right now, in many potential subgames, cheating could be easy
Davada Gallant shouts: Especially arena-type games
Davada Gallant shouts: Since people can bring and use their inventory anywhere
Davada Gallant shouts: Is there a possibility for a land flag that prevents people from creating objects, and from wearing objects or moving objects onto that land?
James Linden: So, yes, there is a problem with the no-create
James Linden: flag on land. It blocks create, but not moving objects onto the land.
James Linden: D'oh!
James Linden: So, I could tighten-up the no-create option.
You: sounds painful
Davada Gallant shouts: If that's something that will happen, is it possible for a no-attach flag?
James Linden: Hmm.
James Linden: You could use the existing "no outside scripts" flag to turn
James Linden: off other scripts.
Davada Gallant shouts: Well, here's a possible scenario
James Linden: Blocking all attachments would limit people's dress options.
Davada Gallant: Nod, it would
Davada Gallant shouts: Let's say I were to create an arena battle subgame
Davada Gallant shouts: People could wear armor into the game (illegally) to deflect bullets
James Linden: Ah
Davada Gallant shouts: Obviously, this makes the game less fair and less fun
James Linden: True
Davada Gallant shouts: I'd be willing to limit people's wardrobe for 15 minutes while they're playing the game :-)
James Linden: I think the best approach to take it to make people who want to play
James Linden: attach an object to themselves that
James Linden: indicates their intent to play.
James Linden: Have that object keep track of hits, score, etc.
Davada Gallant shouts: That's a good idea, but it could be potentially abused
James Linden: Thanks, Davada, I'll make a note of the no-attachment idea.
Davada Gallant shouts: OK
James Linden: That could clean things up a fair amount.

You shout: catherine - you're up
Catherine Omega: I think we need a "content" setting for objects, and that you move things like Phantom into it.... you could have an object that was fog, for instance, or better yet, negative space... so that you could carve a hole out of existing primitives.
Catherine Omega: I think we need a "content" setting for objects, and that you move things like Phantom into it.... you could have an object that was fog, for instance, or better yet, negative space...
Catherine Omega: so that you could carve a hole out of existing primitives.
Catherine Omega: You could use the same method to create blocks of water, or create a null space within water, for purposes of constructing dry areas below the water line.
James Linden: So, like a phantom object that "contained" fog
James Linden: set the sides invisible or something
James Linden: set phantom so no collisions
Catherine Omega: You could also set zone permissions..... so that you could script interactions that you permitted within that region.
James Linden: hmmmmmmmmmm
Catherine Omega: Or set a block as "interior", so that we could have weather effects again, and not have rain coming through our ceilings.
James Linden: volume based settings rather than land based
Catherine Omega: Well, not rather than, in addition to.
James Linden: We're actually talking now about inside/outside options for 1.1
James Linden: It could improve our performance a fair amount
Catherine Omega: I think that most settings like land should be kept on x/y only..
James Linden: if we knew when we were inside a building
Catherine Omega: but by having content settings, it'd be helpful..
James Linden: Yeah, I agree land stuff should be x/y
Catherine Omega: Oh yeah, I hadn't thought of that.
James Linden: So specifically, fog, water...
James Linden: what rules would you want to change within the box?
Catherine Omega: I think the most important would be negative space.
James Linden: (and this is a real pain to do for anything other than boxes)
Catherine Omega: A means to override object that it intersected with.
James Linden: negative space = cut holes in other objects?
James Linden: ah
Catherine Omega: Haha, yes. I wouldn't recommend using something with other shapes than boxes.
Catherine Omega: Right, so you could have an empty area underwater, for instance.
James Linden: Ah
Catherine Omega: or use it to cut holes in objects.
James Linden: Well, making space underwater or under land
James Linden: is a lot easier than holes in other objects.
James Linden: Holes in other objects is tough because we have to create additional
James Linden: geometry around the hole.
James Linden: add vertices to the object that weren't there before
Catherine Omega: Well, I realize that it wouldn't be TRUE subtraction..
James Linden: Catherine, I like the idea, but I don't know if I can promise it. :-(
James Linden: I'll put it on the list,
James Linden: but other stuff may have to come first.
James Linden: (man, I wish we were a big enough company to implement all the good ideas!)

You shout: James Miller - you're up
James Miller: Alrighty
James Miller: My question is about primitive sizes. Will we ever have it where objects that are really tiny cost only $1 and the largest of objects cost around $25?
James Linden: In a word, no.
James Miller: I dont think we should be charged $10 for the two totally different sized objects
James Linden: At least on the small end.
James Linden: There has to be some minimum charge because...
James Miller: IRL, a small piece of wood is a LOT cheaper than a big piece
Lyra Muse: Either way they add to the sim count, James..
James Linden: the transmission to other users isn't much cheaper for small
James Linden: stuff than large
jemaule Kothari shouts: bye guys
James Linden: (same number of bytes on the wire)
James Linden: It's also the same number of vertices/triangles to render
James Miller: Well, why do we have to pay for that it in fake money?
James Linden: We might save a little because we don't transmit
James Linden: all the little objects if they're too small to see
James Linden: The goal of charging for them is not to punish you.
James Linden: It's to keep crazy people from filling the world
James Linden: with 0.5meter plywood boxes
James Linden: There's gotta be a limit somehow, and we've chosen to do it
James Linden: with Linden dollars.
James Miller: well, there has to be another way
Dionysus Starseeker: hooray for boxes ;^p
James Linden: Would you pay more for a torus than a box?
James Linden: If boxes were cheaper?
James Miller: Maybe
James Linden: OK...
James Linden: noted
Ama Omega: I would.
James Miller: ok
ope rand: me too
Catherine Omega: I wouldn't.
James Linden: Charging same amount for different size stuff seems weird.
James Linden: If only we could charge more for ugliness!
James Miller: hah
Alexis Fairchild: lol
bUTTONpUSHER Jones: hehe
ope rand:
James Linden: integer ugly(key objectid) { }
James Miller: I can name a few people who would be broke..
Alexis Fairchild: Me for one... hehe

You shout: buttonpusher - you're up
bUTTONpUSHER Jones: What is the timeline for Object to Object IM to be implemented?
James Linden: uhhhhh
You: smells james thinking
James Linden: errr
James Miller: he gives off an odor when he thinks?
James Linden: not right now? :-p
Lyra Muse: Damn, someone get a bucket!
bUTTONpUSHER Jones: =p
James Linden: Sorry, BP, I don't have a date.
James Miller: He gave a bad answer! get the tar and feathers!
James Linden: Which means it probably isn't going to make 1.0
bUTTONpUSHER Jones: ok. i'm happy listen works again for now
James Linden: I'm sorry I can't be more specific than that.

You shout: you're up Ope
ope rand: i would like to have some control over the camera
ope rand: perhaps after being granted permissions from the user like control permissions
James Linden: yes
James Linden: camera control
ope rand: i think it would be a bad idea to let the camera fly away
James Linden: What specifically would you like to do with it? Put it in a fixed location?
James Linden: put two people's cameras in the same place?
ope rand: but i just want to prevent a user from controlling it himself
James Linden: ahhh
James Linden: To what end?
ope rand: and possibly control it a bit myself
Ama Omega: I could use it to follow a mini car around a mini race track (that the user was controlling)
ope rand: to stop cheating in some games
James Linden: like puzzle games?
ope rand: yeah or a card game where the player wants to see his cards in front of him
James Linden: Would limiting it to a certain distance of the avatar be enough?
ope rand: or just to lock the camera behind and make sure it stays there
James Linden: 'cause in third person it's a few meters behind
James Linden: I guess you could lock out mouselook
ope rand: it doesn't go upside down either
James Miller: or lock the person INTO mouselook!
James Linden: ouch
Lyra Muse: Yeah.
Lyra Muse: But that still is harsh..
ope rand: yeah that could work too
James Miller: but for some games, might be necessary
James Linden: true
James Miller: such as the card game idea
James Linden: OK
ope rand: and if the camera could go upside down.
James Miller: even if you lock them in 3rd person, the avatar is still able to turn and get a glimpse of the cards
James Linden: We might be able to provide some control over the camera
ope rand: cool
James Linden: For efficiency reasons, it might be really helpful if
James Linden: more than one camera was in the same place
James Linden: would help our server CPU load a lot
James Linden: But that's our problem, not yours. :-)
ope rand:
James Linden: OK, camera controls for game cheating control

You shout: dave zeeman - you're up
James Linden: keeping things out of view.
James Linden: Got it.
Dave Zeeman: The ability to set object defaults, such as permissions, sizes, and snapped positioning.
James Linden: For new objects dropped with the create tool?
Dave Zeeman: Currently all new objects are created with group permissions all set to on, which isn't really what I want.
Dave Zeeman: yes
Dave Zeeman: also sometimes I might not want to constantly be building .5/.5/.5 sized things
James Linden: True
Dave Zeeman: so if we could have perhaps a button that you could push
Dave Zeeman: and all current permissions/sizes could be saved as default
James Linden: I usually either use duplicate or make a template in my inventory... but
James Linden: setting defaults could be easier
James Linden: Have you used "copy selection" in the create tool?
Dave Zeeman: yep i have
James Linden: Yeah, it's not enough, is it?
Dave Zeeman: well.... sometimes no
You shout: alexis - get ready - you're next
James Linden: Show of hands.... do you think objects should be automatically created as part of owner's current group? yes or no?
Dave Zeeman: no
Ama Omega: no
Lyra Muse: No.
Tweke Underhill: no
Kensuke Leviathan: no
Bel Muse: NO
ope rand: no
bUTTONpUSHER Jones: no
James Linden: I sense consensus.
Hiro Yamamoto: can't make it so you can change the default behavior?
Dionysus Starseeker: no
Dave Zeeman:
Catherine Omega: definitely not.
James Linden: Hiro, yes.
James Linden: But the default behavior is important too.

You shout: Alexis - you're up
Alexis Fairchild: With all of the new people coming into SL due to the open beta, and later with the release, we will be getting people who have no or little clue about building until they get some classes in or experimenting with it... they want to build a house...
bUTTONpUSHER Jones: question
James Linden: yep, they wanna build
James Linden: I see it in their eyes.
Dave Zeeman: lol
Hiro Yamamoto: question
Alexis Fairchild: Now.. until they get their skills up to par, will there be something like pre-made walls or floors that newbies can use until their building skills get better
Dionysus Starseeker: bah... who needs a house
James Linden: Alexis, yes!
James Linden: Hunter can say something about this.
James Linden: We're working on house-construction-kit objects
James Linden: to make house building easier
Alexis Fairchild: Something that can be customized more than the default cabin or house kits?
James Linden: for newbies
You: I think of it as "personalize, customize, create"
Alexis Fairchild: Excellent.... thank you
James Linden: Of course, ideally an enterprising resident could sell them hint hint
Cyfin Kato: Question
You: some folks just want to personalize
You: but then they get excited and want to customize (change textures on something)
You: and before you know it, they are excited to try creating
Lyra Muse: Sell the newbie cabins? :P
You: Right, now we're pretty good at the "create" level
Alexis Fairchild: I was thinking walls with default texture
Lyra Muse: Or customized ones?
James Linden: There certainly is a fair gap between never-used-3D-app-before and
Alexis Fairchild: So they could customize the walls to their tastes without it becoming a condo area.. lol
You: but need to get better at the customize level (house in a box, "smart" objects, model kits)
James Linden: make-the-house-I-dream-of
James Linden: Hooray for condos! :-)
Dionysus Starseeker: about a 2 month gap
Dionysus Starseeker: heh
You: for "personalize" we'll be doing more work on the user interface, etc to make it easier for new residents
You: so it's a great point alexis

You: ama - you're up next
Ama Omega: Any hope of getting a Find feature added to the scripting window?
James Linden: Yes. :-)
ope rand: ooh plz
Ama Omega: Woot. hope is good.
James Linden: Drives me nuts too
James Linden: Dunno when
ope rand: yay!
Lyra Muse: Alright!
James Linden: But stuff that makes us nuts tends to get fixed
Dave Zeeman: lol
Ama Omega: yay!
James Linden: it ain't gonna be regular-expressions and all
James Linden: and it may not make the next version, but it will come
Ama Omega: Thank you
James Linden: (FYI, we're going to be at E3 next week showing Second Life
James Linden: so we've been burning some effort preparing for the show)

You: Hiro - you're up with a question
Hiro Yamamoto: i am new, so i might be there, but a call to actually create an object rather then just copy it from inventory?
James Linden: no, it has to come from inventory
James Linden: you can load up the inventory
James Linden: with lots of examples
James Linden: but it has to be something you can make in the UI
James Linden: But I could see
James Linden: how that would be useful for
James Linden: stuff like auto-building tools
James Linden: For now, I would just stick with putting
Hiro Yamamoto: exactly
James Linden: prototype objects in the inventory.
James Linden: But that's a good idea
James Linden: We'll have to be really careful to verify
James Linden: the parameters... don't want to create 256x256x256 meter boxes. :-)
Hiro Yamamoto: lol
James Linden: (that actually happened once.)

You: FYI - there's a newbie event here at 7pm so we're gonna wrap up
You: Cy - send me your question and we'll add it to the chat log
You shout: Thanks all - i'll get the chat log up tonight or tomorrow a.m.
You shout: And everything you asked for will be done by Monday, right James ;-)
James Linden: uh, sure, Hunter.
James Linden: heh
You: gives you all a hand
James Linden: If anybody's going to be in Los Angeles at E3, we're in the nVidia booth.
James Linden: Thanks for all your input
James Linden: You guys really make the world

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