Things have been happening lately that you really need to know about… things that may well have crept under your own personal radar because, as seems to be always be the case – especially in recent times, the only way you’ll ever find out about half of these is if you have an army of investigators digging into the inner machinations of Linden Lab.
So, just in case you missed them, here’s the lowlights that have surfaced this week…
Beta rollout of the ‘received items’ folder
Sounds inoccous doesn’t it? This feature was promised a while back and was eagerly awaited by traders – the original premise: direct delivery of Marketplace items straight into a ‘received items’ folder in the inventory; simple, useful and a feature that was wanted by us. Now, the Lab have unveiled their monster… a folder into which everything you take, buy, take a copy of, receive or have returned to what is currently ‘lost & found’ is going to be unceremoniously and indiscriminately dumped into one morass. It also appears to break scripts that allow vendors to deliver folders into your inv.
Imagine the sheer annoyance of taking items that you’ve rezzed back into inventory and, instead of it going back into its original folder, it goes to ‘received items’ instead. Consider doing a spot of Marketplace shopping over your lunch break, when you can’t go inworld, then later when you log in you find that everything you’ve bought is in your received folder… six pairs of boots, all messed in together, each with those anonymous footshapers – how on earth are you going to unscramble that chaos?
Changes to 3rd Party Viewer Policy
Some teeny weeny changes – published yesterday – which seem fairly inoffensive until you consider what they really mean.
Here’s the gist of it:
Over-zealous ‘privacy’ protection – When i say over-zealous, consider this: LL will not permit anything built into TPVs that will identify what viewer or system any resident is using – so, goodbye to viewer tags for a start. Also, LL are going to break some LSL calls that disclose the true online status of a resident – this is really going to screw up lot’s of objects that rely on these scripts. You have no choice in this – using a particular viewer won’t help – the Lab are going to break the code anyway. Expect it to happen early next week.
The shared experience – There are a few strands to this; firstly TPVs will not be allowed to introduce anything into a viewer that changes the way the virtual environment is experienced that hasn’t also been implemented in the official Viewer. Under this ruling, things like Emerald’s multiple attachment points would never have been allowed, neither would parcel Windlight. If the third party developers come up with a cool new feature of this sort in future, Linden Lab will insist that they get to vet it, break it, and implement it in the official Viewer, before any 3rd party viewer is allowed to use it. Oh joy!
Secondly, Existing stuff that falls into the above category will have to be changed in 3rd party viewers to match the official Linden version if, and when, the lab implements their own one.
Thirdly, if a feature’s not in the official viewer, you can’t have it. So, if the Lab don’t like a new shared experience feature proposed by a TPD, then it won’t be allowed in any viewer.
These changes, i think, are shameful. At best they’re going to slow down viewer development and stifle innovation, at worst third party dev’s might just stop bothering – because there’s little incentive for them to do anything new here.
Read more here and hear Oz Linden haranguing the developers here, (call me cynical, but take a listen at 50 minutes… is this what a lot of this nonsense is really all about – getting people to do all the hard work for the Lab for nothing? If it is, it’s a worrying trend that seems to have surfaced recently).
If you ask me, it’s only a matter of time before the Lab pull their open source code entirely because it’s becoming more closed and secretive by the day.