Firestorm for Opensim and More

This is the lastest news from the firestorm developers:

We’ve recently discovered that Firestorm has become the favorite viewer for other grids. I personally have had a LOT of grid owners approach me asking for improvements to Firestorm in OpenSim. Well, it just so happens that ‘other grids‘ are where Armin excels, in fact I’ve put Armin in charge of that area from this point forward.

In other words, Firestorm is going to extend its focus and improve support for other grids, however I must point out.. we cannot ‘offer support’ for other grids since there is just no way to stretch our support team out that thin into other grids.  Well we’ve thought about that and decided we’re going to offer TWO versions of Firestorm. One for Second Life with Pathfinding Havok goodness, and one for other grids without Havok. We’ll have more news about that soon.

So, now we will have two versions of Firestorm viewer, one for opensim and one for secondlife. The main reason of this version is because Firestorm is using a technology called as Havok which license is restricted. Here’s a information about havok from Second Life Wiki:

Linden Lab is incorporating technology from Havok into the Second Life Viewer to provide certain advanced features. In order to enable Third Party Viewers to provide those features, Linden Lab has obtained the right to sublicense this Havok technology to Third Party Viewers.

The technology is provided in the form of an autobuild package ‘llphysicsextensions’ containing header files and the required library. This does not directly expose the Havok APIs, but a set of higher level interfaces specific to the viewer. Sources for the wrapper itself will not be open source. The llphysicsextensions package includes all features that use Havok (currently convex decomposition and features related to navigation mesh for pathfinding).”

But there’s more about this new version of firestorm:

More skins and skin customization improvements, new Windlight effects, Growl, Build floater improvements and options, ctrl/shift mouse wheel for setting custom default cam positions, brought back “remove scripts from selection”, LSL PreProcessor!, improved functionality to estate tools, improved mouselook functionality, sound explorer, permanent derender, asset blacklist… loads of bug fixes, improvements and new features! The list goes on and on and on with too many to list! It’s all coming folks!

But when.. you ask?  Well, we’re getting close to the end of our 4.1.1 release targets which means we’re getting very close! However, we’re also kind of waiting for LL’s pathfinding goodness so we can release with that stuff as well. As usual I cannot give you a release date, but I’ll risk saying.. shortly after LL releases their pathfinding stuff, we’ll release the next epic Firestorm update!

There’s one thing I would like to highlight, Some residents always complain about Lindens Labs. I am not against close source licenses and The Havok company have the right to protect their product, but one thing that some people dodn’t see is that Linden Labs adquire a sublicense so havok can be implemented on TPV (Third Party Viewers). So that means, in the future we can use our favorite viewer (next version offcourse) with new technology and we aren’t required to use SL Viewer. So I just want to show is that Lindens are nice people and they take care about SL Residents.

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