I’ve not had much time recently to work on my Kitely store due to my RL and SL creative demands. Plus I felt sort of a bit deflated by the comparative lack of builders’ resources and scripts there were in Kitely and that persistent, nagging feeling of having stepped far back in time. I know that this will all change as the months roll on but being an impatient sort of person and a perfectionist that doesn’t quite help me at the moment!
So the work needed to get the cottages ready, exporting and importing hundreds of house parts, decor items, 1000s of textures, landscaping etc plus the need to build many new things and write scripts has taken it’s toll on my mind and drained my creative energies. I therefore had a break from Kitely for a couple of months to get re-energised for the final push. But it also helped me to take a more realistic view of what could be done with my 4 sim space, which has gone from being an exciting expanse of wonderful possibilities to an enormous barren landscape of emptiness aside from a few prims and half baked mesh bits strewn about.
I’ve now given up any hope of any type of grand opening as the sims will be mostly empty for the foreseeable future, apart from some careful landscaping, a few bridges and a couple of houses for sale. I now plan to drop in a new cottage or some decor when they’re completed and will add in other creations as I go along. That way I won’t feel so overwhelmed by all the things I have set myself to do and in any case this is a creative outlet for me and that means it should be fun!
The technical aspects of transferring goods from one grid to another have been really energy draining and there has not been that much by way of resources to help ex-pat Second Lifers make the transition. However, I always get answers quickly whenever I post on the Kitely forums and everyone is really helpful but really there should be some sort ‘How To’ guide specifically for Second Life builders, I may add on some notes to this blog if I can muster up enough interest to do it : )
In the meantime I will be publishing ad hoc posts as to progress and will publish the date when my almost empty group of sims will be open for people to see the houses available and the first house for sale will be Blossom Cottage featured in these photos in 2 texture designs, Blush Pink and Grey/Brick. Blossom Cottage is also available on the SL Marketplace (Blush Pink only) and at my SL In-world store, see this previous post for all the links.
These photos were taken on my Kitely sims and this is Atlantis Beach part of ‘The Village’ mega sim where my store resides. The theme will be similar to my SL store based around a (hopefully) beautiful coastal village, surrounded by woods, rivers and dales. That’s my vision anyway.
This post has ended up sounding much more downbeat than I had intended. This is definitely not a reflection on Kitely but more of a reflection of me as a person and as a virtual worlds builder. I have an artistic, butterfly mind, carelessly jumping from one creative project to another. Frequently exasperated when things take so much longer than expected. Always hoping that creating anything is made as easy as possible, so that my inspirations are not crowded out by inconveniences such as scripts or virtual world physics.
Really, I wish I could clone myself so that all of the millions of plans I have in mind actually get done. I haven’t forgotten about the free skins I promised to do for Kitelyites, I will still do them although I am not sure when. I am an expert in building 3d cottages, 3d skins are a whole different skill set!
Stay posted though for the new store opening and if you do have any questions about life in Kitely let me know or use the Kitely Forums they are a friendly bunch.
Hiya Moco-)) Yea, it is hard to do the initial transfers. The thing to keep in mind with Kitely is that once it is on your region[s] you can export the whole region via their webgui to your own computer, and even view a free export report that I like a lot, personally.
Once it is in your computer you can upload it back to any regions anytime you wish, or to your own soas or connected regions in some grids [but not any other closed commercial sl clone grids…at least on your own..if at all].
I would recommend doing the backups regularly also, in case some issue happens you can just upload the last one and keep on going-))
Thanks for the words of encouragement, I think I will be there or thereabouts in a couple of weeks….hopefully!
yea, there is certainly no hurry for deadlines [other than death, of course…lol]
Lol well here’s hoping I get it done before then!
I hear ya on that!! lol
Love your cottages, Moco. Really hope you do sell them on the Kitely market. I would love to buy some…:-)
That’s kind Jane! I am not sure where I am going with Kitely at the moment as setting everything up as a house builder is a lot of work plus there are some key world differences. But never say never! Kitely haven’t really done that much to support transitioning home builders with info etc 😦
Have you seen the Kitely Market online documentation? https://kitely.atlassian.net/wiki/display/doc/Documentation
We’ll also be publishing a tutorial video for merchants in the next couple of months after we’ve finished rolling out a few additional features to our marketplace..
Well something is definitely needed. Most people hate reading docs, how about a few videos instead targeted at SL creators? It depends on how much you want us because I already have a successful business in SL but Linden Lab land charges are criminal. Here are some of the problems I have encountered as a builder in Kitely as I naively believed (and why not) that the SL and Kitely physics are more or less the same. After weeks of trying to get some stairs to work I found out by accident that the physics in Kitely is quite different…big problem, yes there are workarounds but it is like going back in time so I just haven’t bothered. Also the rendervolumelodfactor (essential for seeing things properly) is not as strong as in SL so meshes look clunkier. Uploading complex mesh from outside takes ages (understandably) but if the big ticket merchants are to come over i.e. those who sell complete sims, houses etc then uploading big builds should be made easier and most of the creators who make this type of thing are from SL where saving their builds as raw files is impossible. I could upload my builds bit by bit but why bother as it means exactly the same as rebuilding from scratch and I don’t have the time. The physics also effect doorways and floors, which again cause problems. I have spent quite a bit of time looking for suitable scripts and there isn’t that much choice and it would help to have a list of ‘get started scripts’ for at least the basics on Kitely free for builders. These are just some of the headaches I’ve had and as a creative person sadly it has put me off for now. If you really really want more expert builders to help to attract people over they don’t have the time to waste looking for the basics nor reading miles and miles of text, more support, more direction and a simplified process of moving my stuff over is needed in the form of videos, fAQS etc devoted to getting people comfortable with the differences. Just a few thoughts!
Thank you for your feedback Moco, we’re very interested in getting successful SL content creators to list their items in Kitely Market as well.
There have for some time been two different physics engines supported on Kitely, the classic ODE and the new BulletSim. These settings can be configured per Kitely world. Have you tested the new BulletSim option, it should function more like what you’re used to inSL?
RenderVolumeLODFactor is a viewer setting that you can change in OpenSim just as easily as you can inSL, see: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=86j7FDcV5mg
In any case, changing that value puts more strain on people’s viewers which may be an issue for people with systems that are a bit dated. SL viewer and TPVs drops half of the mesh data of an object at each LOD level and are quite trigger happy when it comes to the distance at which they reduce LOD level. Which means that you are forced to either increase the poly counts on your mesh or mess with RenderVolumeLODFactor to manually increase those LOD distances.
Have you tried moving over items using Firestorm’s import/export function? http://wiki.phoenixviewer.com/fs_import_export
Thanks for the reply Ilan.
Firstly, anyone who spends anytime in SL even newbies know all about rendervolumelodfactor and how to improve how the world around us looks. It’s etched into our psyche, as most serious creators always include detailed instructions in their builds on how to use this to improve the customer viewing experience. Everyone toggles rendervol all the time. You would probably not be able to see SL properly without these days for the reasons explained below.
Secondly, I don’t have a dated system (I have a super fast mac and internet connection). Plus anyone who has a dated system would really struggle to see mesh properly (if at all) and would therefore struggle to have any kind of meaningful time in SL. Everything is made from mesh. My avatar body is mesh as are my clothes, hair, shoes, eyes, eyelashes, teeth, fake pierced tongue, toenails, fingernails hands, feet, accessories, jewellery, gadgets, plants, genitals, animals, rocks, houses, decor, plants…everything. Very soon (and not by any particular design) my entire SL in-world store will be made of mesh. I am labouring the point to illustrate just how important mesh is in SL and therefore the expectation that this will be the same in any other metaverse that wishes to attract ex pat SLers. When I toggled rendervol in Kitely I had to whack it up to 10 to see any change, which I didn’t quite understand.
I’ve used both the Firestorm and the Singularity exporter since they were introduced and the Singularity one is better. But to mention that sort of misses my previous point. The problem isn’t with exporting although that is not an ideal process either. These viewers will comfortably export a reasonably complex house but try uploading that same house into Kitely or anywhere else – it takes a long time and even then the physics have to be re-done and sometimes the textures get totally messed up. All of this requires extra building and therefore extra time. I don’t know many creators who relish the idea of building the same thing over and over again. So my point was, is, if you want everyone to come, make it easier, somehow, for builders to move their stuff over, without them calculating that the amount of effort needed versus any potential gain just isn’t worth the hassle.
Also without a good number of expert scriptors (who make SL what it is) it will be (IMHO) difficult to get the volume of builders and avis across. I’ve previously spoken to some top SL scriptors to get their views and they say that although the script language is similar, when you’re faced with fixing that one difference in 1000s of lines of script just to make a few dollars, it just isn’t worth it. So what can Kitely do to make it easier, other than suggesting we do things we’ve already done or are familiar with. If you want people to make that move I am thinking that maybe something bigger has to happen to support people.
These are just my opinions but I have over 30 residential structures (not to mention decor) that I could set up in kitely but the thought of rebuilding everything over and over again makes my heart sink … but that could just be me 😦
I will have a look at the bullet physics….now where would I find more info on that!
See http://www.kitely.com/virtual-world-news/2014/07/28/opensim-0-8-and-improved-search/ for how to enable BulletSim in Kitely. BulletSim is a port of a popular game physics engine (used for such games as grandtheft auto) that was developed by Intel to work with OpenSim. You can find various YouTube videos showing off vehicles on it but I’d recommend you test it out yourself to see if it addresses your concerns.
Rendering, by definition, is done by the viewer so I’m curious why you’d see a difference using the same viewer with the same settings in SL and in Kitely. My only guess would be that the object you uploaded was uploaded with different LOD data.
We have some nice mesh objects being sold in Kitely Market, it may be worth trying to get some of those content creators to comment here with their insights. I’ll ask to see if one of them is willing to do so.
One of the key benefits of listing in Kitely Market is that our marketplace delivers to all hypergrid-enabled grids. Meaning that merchants wishing to branch out or hedge their bets before SL2 comes out can spend the time migrating content over once and then having that content be available for sale in multiple grids. We also have plans to deliver to other virtual world platforms, such as High Fidelity, once they become viable. Anything you import into Kitely can also be easily backed up to OpenSim Archive files so moving that content over to a different grid will not require a repeat of the more time-consuming importing process you mentioned.
Glad to hear your still planning to bring your store to Kitely despite the frustrations. I know what you mean with all the importing. It does get better. Personally, I sat down and took nearly a month of just working on importing stuff. I was selective, only porting things I thought would be popular and leaving other things for later.
I am interested regarding your comment on physics. I have not noticed much of a difference. The major one being that if you choose to upload a model and dont select a physics model, the uploader will automatically set the main model as the phys model also, which is *as I am sure you know* generally something to be avoided. But uploading custom models is the same so far as I can tell. I would be interested if you had some examples.
Your experiences with the LOD factors also runs counter to what I have experienced. Likewise in SL, my entire store is mesh, and I use Firestorm interchangeably between grids and dont notice any difference. My LOD factor is set to 4.0 and I see everything fine.
Scripting aside (which is a major pain) I have found re-uploading things a bit of a bother, but in my experiences, everything works pretty good once it is imported on Kitely, though none of my builds have particularly complex scripts. What kind of scripting is required for your houses? Did you have a sort of integrated interactive system in your builds or separate scripts to run things like door, lights, fire, etc?
If you need individual scripts, I could probably help you out with some. I have the basics like doors, touch on/off lighting (with or without particles), smoke, fire and a few other bits and pieces.
If you want to chat in-world sometime and compare notes I would be more than happy to do that.
Hi Ozwell, thanks for stopping by. I found a couple of issues with the physics; stairs being one and when uploading a mesh model with its own physic especially a doorway for example it just didn’t work. Plus it was hard to find any information as to what the problem was. I am well versed in SL physics, you have to be if you are house builder and want to optimise Land Impact, so not understamding physics is not the problem. I’ll have a look at the bullet physics.
Regarding the scripts, yes getting hold of the basics was a chore and took time. I managed to get some I’d cobbled together to work in Kitely but I am really looking for scripts that make a difference. Lockable doors with menus for owners, texture change huds, centralised controls, proper sit/cuddle scripts for furniture with menus, rezzers, proper web enabled vendors, fire, bath group inviters and running water, to name just a few and all working well and all crucially low lag.
I think that the LOD problem happened when the cottage was exported via a viewer and that just happened to reduce the LOD significantly so that certain parts of the cottages looked terrible and will all need re-work. Interesting the parts that have gone ‘rogue’ were originally prims in SL. It is just a lot of time to invest to do all the extra re-work. Unlike a lot of builders each cottage takes me about 3 months or more to create, it’s a creative process for me, so although it wouldn’t take that long again it would be at least a couple of weeks worth of work. Those are weeks where I would not devoting any time to my existing customers. Which reminds me I saw some ground cover you created yesterday by coincidence and wanted to get some! Do you not have your SL store any more?
Thanks for the offer of some help and when I am next in Kitely I will invite you to look at the builds for any advice : )
I noticed a sit system, colour change HUD and rezzers go on sale recently. I plan on snapping them up this weekend, I will let you know how I get on with those. I just released flowing water with materials which I am quite proud of. Full perm textures and scripts included. Right now I would kill for some decent animations and poses. The basics are out there, but nothing special in my experience.
I concede houses and structures are probably the worst thing to import, as they can have so many individual pieces and textures. I am suffering the same fate with my medieval houses. I have only managed to get my very basic cottages to market so far. Importing prims with the firestorm “export dae” function is not good. It tends to shred the prims into individual faces in my experience and on larger builds they disappear completely sometimes or come through distorted. If you need some basic mesh prim shapes to do a bit of in-world replacement I can send you some over.
Remember also that with firestorm you can export the textures with the model and re-upload them. I big caveat is that its not exactly clear how firestorm organizes these textures. It does not drop them into your inventory. So if you use the same texture on two models and upload them separately, its is (to the best of my current knowledge) unknown if the viewer recognizes the duplication in UUID and eliminates the duplicate or if the duplicate passes through unnoticed. This obviously has implications for potential lag creation, so for this reason I am still re-texturing all my builds by hand. So far nobody has been able to answer that satisfactorily for me.
On physics, sorry I was not implying that you did not understand. Apologies if it read that way. I was just asking for examples as a means of finding a useful suggestion for you. But maybe its best to discuss in-world anyway.
Yes my SL store is still there. I would feel cheeky posting a link on your blog, but search for “Worlds End” under merchants and you’ll find me 🙂
Well that does sound encouraging what with all the new scripts appearing and yes if you could let me know what you think of them that would be interesting.
I normally use the Singularity viewer and its exporter which seems to work better than the one in Firestorm. It transfers textures more successfully although it is still a bit random and has some similar problems to Firestorm, in particular, simultaneously increasing the polygons massively on some objects whilst trashing the polygons on others. At least we have some exporters to use as there’s been nothing from SL to help builders.
Discussing the physics in world would be useful if you have time as then I can show you some of the issues and get some advice.
You may need to change a LM in your picks as when I went looking for the ground cover I ended up on an empty plot that was up for sale!
I also forgot to ask Ilan about the problems with mesh clothing which either never turns up or turns up very late. Leaving me standing there butt naked not a good look. Have you noticed anything similar?
All of your pointers help but progress is slow and really if I were running a Kitely and wanted to get some traction in getting people across I would commission some top SL scriptors to create some key and some original scripts. That investment would quickly reap its own rewards. A few years back I commissioned a bath script which I still use now for 3000l it only took a short time to pay for itself. Obviously top end scriptors would charge proper money for creating bespoke script but IMO definitely worth it.
Look forward to getting that lavender looking ground cover – do you do that in Kitely too? And catching up with you in-world, thanks again.
We fixed some long standing inefficiencies with how OpenSim handled meshes on teleport a while back, which may have addressed the problem you encountered in the past. We also contributed that patch to OpenSim core so the problem should be resolved with all current versions of OpenSim.
I suggest you test again and see if the behavior you reported still exists.
Oh thanks for pointing out the link in my picks. I forgot about that. My profile mentions that I had to let the in-world store go. I make more money without it (sales go down of course, but you save big on tier) plus all the time I spend in Kitely these days it sadly made no business sense to keep it.
I dont use Singularity much. One thing I have noticed with the firestorm tools is if your copying a large item like a house, cam around it a bit, make sure everything loads in fully before export. I had the problem with fuzzy textures and warped bits of mesh until I started doing this. Seems the tool only captures what you actually see at the time. Same goes for prims and mesh.
My avatar in Kitely is not mesh right now so I dont know about any clothing issues sorry. There are rare occasions where a part of one of my attachments wont rez, but that happens pretty seldom.
I dont currently have lavender in my store (working on it though 🙂 )do you mean the bluebells?
Progress is indeed slow, but its also pretty steady. The problem with asking scripters to come do custom work for the Kitely grid is that i doubt Kitely has a massive budget for these things. Even if they did, where do you start? Everyone has different priorities. You ask a sailor, roleplayer, house builder, musician or club owner and each would have very different ideas on what scripting they consider to be “essential”. Start down that road and it could get expensive pretty quickly.
There are some very able scripters already in Kitely and I am sure they will get round to it all in time. Maybe talk to Dundridge Dreadlow or Kayaker Magic? They both seem to be rather handy when it comes to decent low lag scripting. If you tell them what your after maybe they can help you or already have a product that fits in production.
Yes I think it must have been the Bluebells, very pretty anyway.
That’s a good call re Dundridge or Kayaker. I did ask another scriptor to do some custom scripts but she never came back to me.
And a very call good re making sure everything is razzed up before exporting, I will definitely try that…. I might even try with my latest build… but I have already started to hold my breath!
See you in world soon.