Tech Talk

MOSES no longer to submit patches to OpenSim

After what can be described as a contentious period between the MOSES project that use OpenSim for training of US Army staff and OpenSim core developers, the project has in a statement to the opensim-dev mailing list stated they no longer will contribute patches to OpenSim.  

The MOSES project is not suggesting, alluding, or hinting at anything.  I am stating for the record, based on our experiences with the code acceptance practices of the Open Simulator project, that the process is subjective.   

The MOSES project will longer submit patches.  This decision is based on the advice of one of the Open Simulator developers.  We will be working strictly from our public GitHub.  We will announce when code is ready for pulls.  You may do with it as you wish, and we will be available for consult should you want to modify it for inclusion in the Open Simulator codebase.  We are also writing a detailed "Open Sim PhysX API" document that you will find useful.  This decision allows for you to work at the pace you are accustomed to and it will not impact our schedule.

Although we are no longer submitting patches, if you work with us we can ensure the code that produced is in a state you would find immediately ingestible.

Good Luck.

Douglas Maxwell, Ph.D.

Science and Technology Manager

Virtual World Strategic Applications

U.S. Army Research Lab

Human Research & Engineering Directorate

Simulation & Training Technology Center

MOSES have in the past submitted patches to refine statistics collection to more accurately reflect the real performance of the OpenSim server and is currently developing a new version of the PhysX physics engine that will be able to run on NVIDIA graphics cards, and in the future distributed on dedicated physics servers. PhysX is already used by the InWorldz grid, but running on regular CPUs. Its performance has by many been seen to be superior to the current bulletsim physics plugin that is now standard in OpenSim. 

In addition the MOSES project has made available OAR archives of parts of their regions and content developed for training. XMIR’s Murat River Valley area contains 6 modified versions of these regions.  

Fix for LSL List operations

A fix has been developed to List operations in LSL scripts that makes constructs like 

myList += new_item;             // appended item with simplified syntax

behave as per the SecondLife Wiki. The fix means that existing scripts on OpenSim grids may have to be modified. The upside is that more scripts developed for SecondLife should be portable without rewriting.

Kokua viewer 3.8.2 released

After a good development and testing period the Kokua viewer 3.8.2 has been released and is available for download for both Mac, Linux and Windows users. 

This version has been build with updated libraries and development tools such as Xcode and Visual Studio 2013 which has made it possible to give it functionality very close to Linden Lab’s SecondLife viewer in addition to OpenSim functionality. It also means it has all the bug fixes that is in the SecondLife version. 

The 3.8.2 version so not very rich on new OpenSim features but has new functionality like Viewer Marketplace Listings and Experience Tools making it a full fledged SecondLife citizen. With the enhanced build tools of Kokua, this release should be an attractive viewer for SecondLife Merchants. 

The current release does not have the RLV additions, which will be added later. Porting the RLV code to the new libraries and development tools is a bit more challenging explains Nicky Perian, the main developer of the Kokua viewer. 

XMIR has contributed to the viewer by doing the builds of the Mac version. 

The full Release Notes has the details of all the changes.

Source Management Tools

The moment you start working with viewer and OpenSim server code – or even configuration files for your servers and regions, the need for source management tools quickly arise.

An application that will handle both Git and Mercurial code repositories is SourceTree from Atlassian.

SourceTree is a front-end to command line based management of Git and Mercurial and helps take the mystery, and sometimes operational errors, out of managing repositories while giving you a much better view of what has and is happening to your code and revisions. 

SourceTree is free and available for both Mac and Windows users.

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