Suzi_Avonside @Suzi_Avonside

Caerdydd, Cymru Offline

Wedi bod gwmpas am sbel... Ers 2010 yn achos OSG

While SL embraces PBR in an attempt to embrace greater 'realism' using the increasingly creaky old technology we’re all familiar with there is a backlash among Generation Z and other younger demographics towards cutting edge gaming with hypereal graphics and an embracing of older, less graphically real aesthetics. Some of this may be down to the fashionable adoption of retro, as in the numbers buying things like typewriters and traditional film cameras, but is some of it also likely a backlash against the increasing trend for hyperrealism where it’s no longer really easy to spot something real from recorded game action.

I am not a gamer, hence there have been a few times when I’ve been watching videos purporting to be actions in the current Russo-Ukrainian war where the game graphics have been so good that they appear to be real, it’s only when one looks more intently that it becomes subtly obvious that it’s recorded game action and not footage of an actual battlfield encounter.

I’m aware of arguments that the graphics of SL/OS are ‘poor’ but I have never agreed as this is a very subjective area depending on so many different factors, such as the comparisons being made. Relative to Minecraft and Active Worlds the graphics of SL and Opensim are fantastic, but compared to a photograph or the hypereal renderings of high end computer graphics, very poor indeed. Personally I rather like the aesthetic of SL/Opensim and would argue that the aesthetics are neither good nor bad, but exactly what they are. I’m not arguing against hyperrealism for those who want it, but rather agruing that the current graphics are regarded as fine by the vast majority if those who use Opensim and SL.

This article in today’s Guardian prompted me to write the above after last week I read something about the implementation of PBR in Second Life. Sometimes maybe, less is more, and if the aesthetics of retro games are appealing to Generation Z and other demographics younger than the average found in Opensim, then maybe there is hope yet that our hobby will endure. After all, Active Worlds is now nearly in its 30th year, has a very faithful and dedicated community together with graphics that make Minecraft look good!

RemmyRavenhurst: I am a tech dummy so don't really understand how PBR works but I can figure out that it will take a long time for people to implement for two reasons 1) People have invested so much in what they alre... 3 months ago

Wishing everyone a wonderful time over the festive period, whoever you are, wherever you are.

Below is a reposting of a comment I made in response to Openlife’s pathetic and wrongheaded rebuff to my initial post. I promised to repost my comment if it was deleted from the thread. Not only did my comment get deleted, but I have been blocked, but through the wonderful technology of alts I am able to access Onellife’s diatribe and also what others who have blocked me are posting. No surprises, it has allowed Onelife to distort and manupulate in order to put across his (wrongheaded) point of view, even to the point of contradicitng themselves on a few occasions.

Seriously, 4chan and 8chan could learn stuff from this lot! Indeed, the more I think about it there is an element in Opensim that seems to want to promote some kind of conspiracy theory. Inadvertantly I seem to have provided fodder, though I cannot for the life of me see how my few comments, none of them at all outrageous, unless you’re one of the EIOSSBF cartel, have created such a furore From that they seem to have taken on a life of their own, becoming ever more grossly distorted according to the viewpoint people like Onelife want to project. Good luck to them, my original piece is there to refute their accusations.


Good to see that there is at least a fewwho have a balanced view of the software industry. In the interests of full disclosure I am the person who wrote the article for which Openlife’s article is, I suppose, a attempted rebuff .

For clarity's sake, my piece is still up and there to read. Several people have rather bizarrely taken what I wrote and assumed that it is an endorsement of the EchoVoice project. It is not. It is, however, an opinion piece suggesting that if we want the nice things in Opensim, then it's likely we'll have to pay for them, or do without - it really is that simple. EchoVoice was used as an exemplary, nothing else.

I was also accused by Openlife of more or less demanding money with menaces, and by another suggesitng that I was calling people ‘cheap’*.when all I did was to suggest that most people could afford small contributions: not that they had to, and nowhere did I even hint that people should donate, merely that they more than likely could. Of course there will be a very small number of people who won’t be able to afford to contribute to anything, but I hardly think they will exist in any significant number in virtual worlds as they will be destitute, not inworld, and have far more to worry about than the people on here who are triggered at any suggestion that they could, shock, horror, pay some money for something for once in Opensim.

One of Harper Held’s comments was so abusive and intemperate that I not only deleted all their comments, but also blocked them. Both Openlife and GlennXpletive had some of their comments deleted due to them being either needless repetition, or irrelevant rants that had no place and only served to interrupt the flow of the thread. Because of this Xpletive then felt it okay to make xenophobic comments about my ethnicity. A complaint has been made about that.

Any pertinent comments were left. And yet I have been accused by Xpletive of restrictung their free speech, which is ludircrous. If they want to rant about me there are plenty of places where they could do that, and heck, they could even set up a website to do that - but of course, to do that properly, it would cost them money, and presumably these people are the core of the ‘Everything in Opensim should be free’ cult.

Sure, it's possible that someone could come along and do it for 'free', but it's unlikely. The eagle-eyed will also have spotted that my piece, whilst focusing on a voice module, was somewhat wider in scope, and was presenting an argument that maybe we should be prepared to cough up a small amount of money, if we want nice things in Opensim. There is a precedent, though it’s from 2015 (before the EIOSSBF nonsense started)

And if that wasn’t enough, there is this one so we could have decent vehicles in Opensim:

And... Related to what trggered the OP into writing their piece:

However, that one didn’t succeed, probably because of the avaialbility of Vivox, which, to a degree is understandable, but hardly an ideal solution.

The notion that Red Hat Linux is free of cost because Fedora is free is also a bit of a dishonest claim. Red Hat does have a cost:

EDIT: IBM through Red Hat largely finances both Fedora and CentOS Stream, and development is by both the community and paid professionals employed by Red Hat. A symbiotic relationship common to many opensource projects.

And, as Mike Chase says in his comment, there is a heck of a lot of paid-for work in GNU/Linux and the ‘free’ is more about freedom than free of cost, and, to be fair, most distros don’t make a charge for, but many (if not most) do ask for a contribution to cover their costs, such as this, from Ubuntu MATE:

I certainly didn’t intend to stir up a hornets (or is it a vipers?) nest over this, all I wanted to do in essence was show how the power of numbers could work hugely to our collective advantage. Anyone might think I’d suggested that people should donate their life savings, or steal the bread from their childern’s mouths! Seriously, some of you would do well to go back to school and learn English comprehension.

*Come to think about it, I do think that most of those bitterly complaining and using the poverty of others as a weapon with which to beat me are indeed ‘cheap’. Not just because they don’t want to contribute towards Opensim project, but because they are cynically and despicably exploiting poor people to bolster their arguments rather than going off and berating exploitative employers for not paying their workers enough to live a comfortable life, or petitioning the government to ensure that adequate unemployment benefits are paid to workers unable to find work.

Voice in Opensim is a vexed question, and whilst most of us don't use it for a whole host of reasons it is a very useful thing to have. But, so long as there has been a 'free' alternative, most have been happy to use Vivox. For most people Vivox is probably fine, but for some there is one very big downside to using this service: it eavesdrops.

Some years ago I was working on an Opensim based solution for remote meetings, a place where we could virtually meet. Probably the most important criteria was security and privacy, so obviously Vivox, with its policy of eavesdropping was a non-starter. I had become aware of the Whisper project, but that only worked with Opensim up to 0.7.6, and whilst the module was then still available, it isn't now. Also, the Whisper project itself was abandonware. In 2014, Zetamex announced a bounty for anyone finishing the work on the Mumble-Whisper voice module, and started a crowdfunder, which predictably, this being Opensim, raised the derisory sum of $62 from four backers...

Even at the time, it didn't look as if the bounty would be claimed, as Vivox was still a viable option, so of course that's what people went for rather than for an independent voice solution for Opensim. I did try to contact the person behind the project at the time, as I would have liked to have supported the project, but they did not get back to me. The project I was working on didn't progress, but more because of the high entry threshold of Opensim/Second Life. I still have the OARs I made for the project however.

The EchoVoice project announced in late 2021 offered some promise even though the project was looking for $60k in initial funding. A cynic might think that raising a sum like that in Opensim is just pie in the sky, and so it proved. Thus far the project has raised $775 of the needed $60,000. Hypergrid Business described the project as suffering from 'delayed funding'.

And now that Vivox seem to be about to follow through on their decision to close off access to Vivox for most users of Opensim there is now a clamouring. The writing has been on the wall for a very long time, and there have been alternative voice projects launched from within the Opensim community that have been ignored.

At the end of the day we need to take responsibility for our own project. The Opensim project needs lots of things. Opensim needs its own viewer project with all the SL only gunk removing, and arguably a more formally organised Opensim fork project is needed to properly progress the project. But I doubt that any of this will happen because no one will cough up any cash. I know there are some users of Opensim who are extremely cash-strapped, but I reckon that most could afford the odd pound/dollar every once in a while to support projects in Opensim. Even in my most financially straightened times I could always find the odd couple of quid for causes that are important to me. Now that I'm somewhat more financially secure, I can afford to indulge more, but like most, I understandably want to be sure that any project I contribute cash to has a better than evens chance of reaching its goal.

There is only one way we will get the things we want in Opensim, such as a voice module, and that is through paying for them!


Some people commenting have adopted an intemperate and abusive tone when making comments. I've deleted a few, (and blocked one persistent offender). Some people have also posted irrelevant comments, which have also been deleted. Please keep comments civil, respectful and on topic.

Arielle: The first question should be how many actually use inworld Voice on a regular basis anyway? I suspect the percentage is small. 10 months ago

Last 30 minutes... Great tunes from Emmy Lou!

📝 Sapaticos presents DJs Suzi & Emmy Lou

Suzi and Emmy Lou present an eclectic mix of tunes for your enjoyment and entertainment. 12:00 Grid time TODAY!! (In less than an hour)

📝 First Event at Sapaticos OSGrid: Thursday 30:03:23 Midday PDT (Grid Time)

DJs Suzi and Emmy Lou present diverse sets for your entertainment and enjoyment.