Emerald and Moving Forward

It has been a tough week for lots of  folks. Here's hoping next week is closer to sigh of relief time.

I have no insider info. I have only been reading reports from both people who should know and people who think they know what's been going on. There is a difference of course. Tonight someone sent me to a post from a Emerald developer who has left.  It was the most informative article that I have read. This seems to suggest that deleting the Emerald viewer would be a good idea, and I will do that tomorrow.

I download the Imprudence viewer the morning before the official announcement and installed it that evening. I am not a creature of change. I deal with it well, but I don't really enjoy it. There were other viewer choices of course, but I wasn't about to get into the Viewer 2 fiasco. I have yet to meet someone who loves it.

So for those of you who are changing viewers, here are a few tips on Imprudence -- should that be your viewer as an Emerald refuge -- as someone on the forums called herself.

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Most everything that I used in Emerald is in Imprudence. I missed the derender feature but on writing to the forums found that it was included in a recent (not guaranteed - read beta) release. So I downloaded the newest weekly update viewer and installed it. Happily it goes into a different directory so even if I have issues with it (none so far) I can use the stable (end of June I think) version.

If you know you are going to use Imprudence as your default viewer, then it would be a good idea to agree to associate SLURLS with the viewer on install. If you do not (and I didn't) you have to reinstall in order to get the associations going. Most folks that read this blog use web SLURLs a lot, so being able to click and go is important.

The reason that Imprudence rezzes faster (or appears to) is that it has a stepped rez feature. It basically loads the objects and textures closest to you first and then moves out into the world. If you watch your draw distance pop-up on entering world, you can see that it starts out at 64 and then goes to 128 and beyond. There is a place where you can change the step distance within the program. Update: I  notice that the newest version (beta) comes on at 264.

There are several new to me features in Imprudence that I enjoy. I especially like having a button to pop up  the sky editor on the bottom taskbar (optional); it is right next to the skies list and the distance bar . There is also an optional AO button for the built in AO. From there you can turn the AO on and off or adjust sits as needed. For those of you that run multiple avatars, Imprudence has your avatar name on the program button in the Windows taskbar so you can tell which button belongs to who. You can also set multiple avatar loading within the program.

The biggest complaint on the forums is that the font is different and larger than the standard LL (or Emerald) font. I don't have any issues with the font style or size, but the font set is missing characters and so some characters show up only as empty boxes. I had to work with a script today with all those missing character boxes and that was pretty scary. I suspect that will be high on the list of changes since so many people are asking about it. While the Profile pane is more user friendly (bigger slot for deliveries as one change), the lines break differently than in the other viewers I have used so you can't really tell what your Picks or About Land info looks like to those in other viewers.

The whole Emerald debacle is both disheartening and disturbing. I am sure it is even more so for those intimately involved. We have no guarantees that this won't happen again with other viewers.  All we can do is move on and hope for the best. 

Please feel free to comment on this post if I have made any errors.

  1. gravatar

    # by Tuli Asturias - August 25, 2010 at 10:20 AM

    I have never and will never trust 3rd party viewers, as they are not bound by security and privacy laws like Linden Lab, which is an actual registered company.
    As a creator in SL who makes a living there, I choose to use the official viewer, even though it (for now) doesn't exactly cater to content creators. (It's actually MUCH harder to efficiently create stuff with viewer 2 than it was with 1.23)
    I nag about it, but I feel safe and it's worth so much to me.

  2. gravatar

    # by Chic Aeon - August 25, 2010 at 5:41 PM

    Hi there. I completely support your position.

    Unfortunately working with registered companies (Microsoft, Hewlett Packard and others in my case) has not protected me from disaster.

    Microsoft released a completely faulty product long ago and I, being one of the very first to install (this was NOT a beta), spent 17 hours of my time getting my machine back to where it was before the new version. (This was long before restore points which have saved me SO many times.) That was only one incident; there were others.

    HP shipped me a brand new (hoho) top of the line notebook that came complete with a LONG list of viruses and trojans. After a week of phone calls, they finally admitted their culpability.

    So safety is a questionable idea in the computer world :D. Keeping fingers crossed is always a great way to type !

    I hope you and your computer stay safe and keep making us those great products. Thanks for posting.