I have never taken the liberty of speaking my own personal opinion on this blog as it is not a place for personal opinions. It is a place for political correctness, fairness and unbiased, unemotional facts. However, today I’ve decided to make an exception because I feel some opinion is called for at this point in time.
Flaming Blog Comments
Anyone reading the comments on our blog posts since the release of 4.4.0 would almost be lead to believe we were actually trying to ruin SL by releasing a viewer with bugs. They might even be lead to believe we intentionally put the bugs there. To those of you who have non-constructively complained just for the sake of complaining, flamed us, trolled us, attacked us, and criticized us publicly as if we were trying to release a broken viewer to ruin everyone’s SL experience…. Kindly walk away from your keyboard. Thanks. Your negativity does not help anyone and only makes it harder for us to remain motivated in spending countless hours of our spare time trying to improve your user experience. If you have a problem we do want to know about it constructively, but not in the context of hate. Furthermore, I will probably be disabling comments on release blogs going forward because they are either being used for drama and hate or support requests. There are proper channels for support requests and blog comments is absolutely not one of them. As for the hate, it helps no one.
Now…Allow me to address…
We’ve been accused of not caring and/or not trying to deliver to you a good product. This team works damn hard to make every new version of Firestorm better than the last. But we are not perfect and the viewer is a very complex piece of software to develop and especially test. The more changes we make to Firestorm the harder it is for us to merge new and required code from LL into it. We have a user share in the 6 figures on Firestorm and that number continues to grow constantly, it is impossible for us to develop a viewer that works flawlessly on the near infinite spectrum of computer systems out there. So I ask that you try to understand the complexity and difficulty of what we do before you flame us for not making the viewer perfect for you. Quite frankly, I find it offensive that some seem to think we don’t care and/or accuse us of not trying, so let me be crystal clear! We would not be doing this if we did not care, and Firestorm would not be as popular as it is if we were not trying.
We’ve been accused of not testing enough prior to release. While the development of 4.4.0 was somewhat rushed on account that we had to get the LL Server Side Baking code out into a release, we were also extra diligent in testing everything to the best of our ability. knowing that everyone would need to be on this release when LL flips the switch for SSB, IT HAD TO BE GOOD. So I even created an additional level of testing with our preview group, re-purposing it as a third tier of QA with roughly 1700 users to run the release builds prior to officially releasing it. And they tested it… and it took several different release builds before we felt we had it right… before the consensus among our internal development and support tests, our beta testers and preview group testers said “This is ready for release”. Well perhaps it wasn’t ready, and as the leader of this project that blame should lie squarely on my shoulders not those of our developers, support personnel or quality assurance testers. Please stop flaming our volunteers.
For those of you disappointed with 4.4.0, so am I. Even though it seems the vast majority had few problems we did release with some significant bugs. None of which I might add, showed up significantly in our testing. Inventory not loading, Textures not rezzing, Black rectangles in snapshots, Prims not showing up, low performance are some of the problems that either did not show up in our testing or was missed but which did end up existing in the release.
I am sorry that the release of 4.4.0 was not as great as we had hoped and expected it to be. However, we have worked very hard to provide information to you on how to fix these problems and all while we work very hard to try and fix them properly for our next update. We have been very busy working on a 4.4.1 update to address some of the issues our 4.4.0 release had and are trying to get it out to you as soon as possible. No release date can be offered at this time, please be patient with us.
The Phoenix Firestorm Project, Inc