On this day six years ago, Phoenix rose from the ashes, and from the Phoenix emerged the Firestorm shortly after. Six years ago today the Phoenix-Firestorm Viewer Project was formed, and shortly after we incorporated to form a a responsible, accountable corporation with the simple mission statement To improve the user experience. In those six years we’ve published two very different viewers on two different code bases and have released countless viewer updates. We’ve maintained an average team size of 80 volunteers performing support, quality assurance, development and management; add to that a large team of beta testers and preview testers! Our most recent endeavor has been the development of a Community Gateway where we focus on trying to improve the retention rate of new residents coming into Second Life.
We have accomplished much and, over the years, have persevered through some very tough times and challenges. On this day, as a way of saying thank you for sticking by us — and as we have done for the past five years — we celebrate that we are still here and invite you to celebrate with us at our Anniversary Party!
As in previous years we’ve arranged some awesome live entertainment starting with JavaJoe MacIntyre at 1pm, continuing with Lisa Brune at 2pm and culminating in the headliner performance by Maximillion Kleene at 3pm!
We also have some wonderful gifts for everyone, including:
- A super-cool Firestorm Trans Am with the Phoenix logo on the hood by Acacia Creations.
- An adorable plushy 6th Birthday carry & rez pet named whatever you want to name him or her by Hopes Creations!
- Also by Hopes Creations, this beautiful, custom-made, limited-edition unisex necklace only available at our party space for seven days.
So please join us today in celebrating our 6th Anniversary starting at 1pm SLT in our large event space!
Live performances by:
1 PM – JavaJoe MacIntyre!
In keeping with our three-version rule commitment to Linden Lab, we will be applying a block to version 4.7.3 on September 3rd. This will leave only versions 4.7.5, 4.7.7 and 4.7.9 available to Second Life users. The block will not impact OpenSim grids and will only apply to logging into Second Life.
The Firestorm Team
It is that time again, folks, albeit late again! This update brings us up to date with some of Linden Lab’s latest, and there are plenty of features and bug fixes from us as well. Our RLVa users will certainly appreciate Kitty’s work to update RLVa in the viewer to version 2.0. This also becomes the first release where we are not going to insist you perform a clean install! We’ve changed things up a little bit to try to make updating easier for you. This time, just do an uninstall first, and then install the new version. We’ve documented the process HERE. We do, though, still recommend you back up your settings just in case!
NOTE 1: This release comes with a new feature from LL called JellyDolls, which renders complex avatars as a solid color. It is not a bug, and it is adjustable! More info on JellyDolls here… https://community.secondlife.com/t5/English-Knowledge-Base/Avatar-Rendering-Complexity/ta-p/2967838 More info on that is also on Inara’s blog post, linked below.
NOTE 2: We do not have a Havok version for Mac or Linux this time around, Mac because of a conflict with the RLVa update and Linux because there are too few users who use Havok for mesh uploads or Pathfinding. For those times when you need Havok functionality, you can briefly switch to the LL viewer. Sorry for the inconvenience.
Below are just a few highlights that do not represent by any means all the great stuff in this release! For a complete list see our release notes here or for a review of the highlights in greater detail, see Inara’s blog, where she does her usual fantastic write up.
Linden Lab-Specific Highlights
Fully merged up to Linden Lab’s current release 4.0.6 codebase plus some cherry-picked fixes from upstream. Version 4.7.9 includes the following new features from the Linden Lab viewer:
- Quick Graphics — custom graphics presets. The Quick Graphics feature lets you save optimal graphics presets for all different occasions and quickly switch between them using a new top-bar pulldown.
- JellyDolls — avatar rendering complexity controls. A new Avatar Maximum Complexity control found in graphics preferences lets you prevent expensive avatars from lagging you.
- The HTTP Project — a complete replacement of the under-the-hood HTTP infrastructure. They provide improved performance and stability, resulting in fewer problems with high-volume operations like loading inventory.
- KDU updated to version 7.8,
- RLVa updated to v2.0 — http://catznip.com/index.php/RLVa_2.0_Release_Notes. The main changes in this update are:
- Added RLV 2.9 camera commands/restrictions (vision spheres not yet included due to time constraints but coming soon!).
- Formalized documentation of the nine existing RLVa-specific commands and restrictions
- Added five general new commands, 12 new camera-related commands and 14 extensions to existing commands.
- Fixed a number of issues relating to folder locks (@unshared/sharedwear/detachthis/etc.).
- Creators/scripters, please read the full release notes at http://catznip.com/index.php/RLVa_2.0_Release_Notes.
- For photographers — new option to disable default eye movements and blinking.
- For builders — new option to show parcel boundary lines when building above ground level.
- For combat — avatar hitboxes are now colored in the same color as on the minimap to distinguish between friendlies and enemies.
- Inventory — new filter to search inventory items by transferable permission.
- UI — new look to the pie menu and login screen.
- Windlight — the cloud density setting now updates correctly, resulting in better-looking clouds.
- OpenSim — increased the maximum sound length to 60 seconds; improvements to var region handling, fixed IZURLs in Inworldz.
- Many crashes fixes, bug fixes and performance improvements.
The Firestorm Team!