Blender,Opensim to The Lost Castle workflow (building the boat shed)

This is how my design flow works in conjunction with Blender Opensim and finally into The Lost Castle simulator.
I like to use Opensim as my sketch pad this where the original idea takes shape. It is easy to do a quick sketch with a few prims and easy to move around and get a feeling for the design.

I  Start in Opensim, The Lost Castle merchant area outside the castle moat.
The intention is to Build a Boat shed and living quarters for local boat builder.

Boat shed

After the concept is roughly laid out and a few measurements taken in world I open Blender.  The design will be an all mesh design,  like most of our work in The Lost Castle.
I make the first simple mesh in Blender and then import it to TLC to make sure I have the right  proportions.
The import  is an ongoing process between Blender and TLC checking up to see that the conversion between Blender and Opensim is right.
I like doing this often to make sure I am on right track I also find it hard to get the right feel for things in Blender I like  to walk around with my Avatar  to make sure the design works in  the simulator  and looks in proportion.
(We can talk about scale all day long and not really going  nowhere this is a bit of difficult part with this type of simulation  the camera is behind the Avatar and higher so  to walk around  in comfort we have to have that in mind  but that is for another day).
Often when I import the mesh I see  how I  can make improvements and I add prims and build in world as I would normally do.  Ahh if I had a tool to  export what I just done so I could bring the edited mesh back into Blender that would save me lots of time. However  now I go back into Blender and build that into my mesh what I just edited in TLC.

You can see how this design evolved from the original concept to  product in this album
pictures tells it better than words.


The Lost Castle more progress update

As you can see from resent videos the work in The Lost Castle is progressing, we keep on finding more and more interesting information about Mori Tadamasa’s original Castle at Tsuyama City Japan. This means additional fun, work and gives us more insight in to how the lifestyle might have been not only in the inner Castle area but also in the township forming around the Castle it self (today’s Tsuyama City).
Miyoko is creating that traditional Japanese feel to the project by adding animations, textures clothing and designs. We still have many rough edges to smooth we hope to be part of the Hypergrid soon We like you to visit us then and explore The Lost Castle. Vivox voice is enabled in The Lost Castle so you can chat by voice if you so like. Until then have fun.


“The Lost Castle” Temple preview

Additions to “The Lost Castle”, We have added a few sims to the west of the Castle town . They will be home to the township that is outside the  Castle moat. Miyoko’s 5 level Temple is part of what will happen outside the original Castle town. This is the first video I have attempted with Nirans Viewer I still have a lot of tweaking to do but I like Nirans . This is a Diva distro, at the moment it is not a megaregion setup  but  I hope that will be the end result. It is run locally  and has 26 regions at the moment the final product will be somewhere between 25 to 30 regions. The dense building is in the Castle town inside the moat most of that is mesh.  Further out towards the edges on the  a north side  will be mostly forest, west farms and rice fields,  south  and east  outer township  and farms South also has the mountain-range waterfall and mill. We are experimenting with  mesh and a combination of mesh sculpties and prims over all it works really well. However the problems with physical shape for mesh is still bothering us I hope we will solve that  asap. This is a short clip to show the Temple and  two farm houses and what can be done with Nirans viewer.

“The Lost Castle” a preview

“The Lost Castle” sets the scene of Japan early 1600. It took 13 years to build. The Castle survived  for many years however was partly destroyed by fire in 1809 then later broken up in 1875. Today only one building (reconstructed) stands together with the stone foundations that many other buildings once rested upon. With the help of  Opensim, mesh, sculpties, prims, “Miyoko Solo” and “Honey” we are digitally reconstructing “The Lost Castle”  We plan to have the project open in early 2012, before that  I wanted you to know what we are working on and give a short preview to show our work in progress. picasa album photos

The Lost Castle
The Lost Castle

Troppo second life before mesh.

We started testing  mesh in Troppo main grid SL a few weeks back. We uploaded  animals and terrain  mainly. I think  we still have a long way to go before we can say  we know what we are doing  but we are heading in the right direction.
It made me take a good look at what  we have and how Troppo looks today  with no mesh it will be interesting to see how this video will compare with something  a few years from now.

Areas that I think will benefit from mesh is Avatar, clothing, nature and terrain. Since the advent of sculpted items we have seen a big improvement in the look of nature in form of better trees,bushes and flowers, all though I think most of that change did come from a saving in prims therefore allowing us to have more nature included in our designs.  Anyhow  this is how Troppo looks today we like the place, please feel free to visit us any time

The Display Village Miyoko’s Island and Mountain

A few weeks back we started building in The Display Village, We started a new server in Europe and we been testing the server and the opensim release. We have had good fun  both server and opensim has worked well. The builds are a bit different to what we have done before more on the fantasy side anyhow Miyoko made a  video clip from parts of our building spree, it is work in progress fish, trees, seaweed and rocks are added all the time.

Mesh In Troppo Secondlife our first thoughts.

Almost a week in to testing mesh @Troppo SL.

Mesh is by far the most complex change I have seen during my stay in SL, it is an exciting change. Is is good or bad?  I think it is for you to experience and for you to make up your own mind how, what and if you want to use mesh. If mesh can live together with prims and sculpted items in harmony all is well and I guess this exactly what Linden Lab is trying to do.

I don’t think that is an easy task, especially if at the same time you are trying to make it in a business like manner.

What is this going to cost?  There is added cost to include mesh.  I am not including the cost for software that you might need to create the mesh. You pay for uploading the mesh in the same way you pay for uploading textures and photos. The price for uploading varies on the complexity of the mesh.  As an example the Lion and Tiger (in the clip below) cost between $L150 to $SL200 to upload, the prim count for each is around 180 prims.

The texture for mesh can be as complex as the mesh itself or it can be simple what is right for one not necessarily so for the next and  the ordinary cost for uploading texture  applies.

How will this affect the performance of SL and Opensim?  Well I don’t know but I suspect that as long as we stay within the old prim count rules we should not see much difference. Adding a bit of mesh to Troppo Island has made no impact but we have not added lot of mesh so time will tell.  When you have a mix of prims .sculpties and mesh and try to determine what effects what performance wise, I am glad I don’t have to work it out. I have no doubt that the quality of mesh can be really good and  can be superior to what we had before. However prims and  sculpties are easier to build with. Lets not get too involved or technical,  lets us test more and get more knowledge, meanwhile here is a short clip to show mesh sculpties and prims living together in harmony:-). Thank you to Linden Lab for giving us the opportunity to participate.

Pray for Japan

After the disasters Japan has had this year  it was nice to see Japan women s  football team winning  the World Cup in Germany. I hope that win  can be a turning point and that the  Japanese people can start to feel a bit more relaxed in what has been a horrific start to this year for them.

This MOVIE is composed of a lot of Art Works & messages from Virtual world(Scond Life),
to Japanese people who has been affected by the dreadful disaster.

Diva Distro D2 OpenSim 0.7.1 first impression

More good news from OpenSim late last week, Diva precented an upgrade of her popular Diva Distro a D2. I upgraded Troppo Club on Saturday and was tweaking settings most of the weekend. Impressed? You bet!!  Then a small D2 update Monday clearing some misconfiguration and all of a sudden it all fell in to place. This is really a huge step forward for OpenSim I only mention a few what I feel are major improvements named in no particular order of importance.

Coalesced items: Yes works fine.

I must admit I haven’t tried with lots of prims. I found out tho that in Megaregions it might be best to stick to the root region with other words what happens to me in subregions is all prims end up in one spot. I can understand why and as long as you keep that in mind no big deal. Btw this is of cause also what happens when you use the “Builders Buddy” in  megaregions.

A Builders Buddy work around:  Use “Holo Emitter”  prims are added in relation to a base prim and not toaa posittion in the region

good luck.

Media on a Prim:  Works fine for me this is great news.

Mesh: Is it possible to upload mesh Yes!

Remember there are lots of different meshes. You need a  Collada .dae file,  having said that not all Collada files work either not for me at least but I am no expert in mesh or Collada. I went to SL wiki and downloaded my favourite car, I know this works and beside that it is a brilliant design and a pure pleasure to look at. When I can upload this car and all works fine I know I am on the right track. Google warehouse is an interesting place you can find almost anything and lots of Collada files,  you will see some fantastic designs.


The Car

What is this?  Well it is not yellow so not a submarine but maybe it could be…. what ever, it is charming,  a good test, a large file.

The AirSub?

Mesh is not as easy as it first looks, it is however a gigantic step forward. Will it be disruptive? Yes I am sure it will be……..

Hypergrid:  Is Hypergrid working? Yes it is!

This is most probably the crux of the matter this is how we can communicate and exchange ideas and items between grids, stand-alone or what ever we like to call them. Without Hypergrid we will be building more and more walled gardens of Virtual Worlds I don’t think that is a good idea.

This version is not compatible with earlier models, as a matter of fact if you have old hg addresses in your database that can be a problem. Diva as a tip says delete the old addresses, delete direct from the database. I used wifi logged in as admin and went to link regions and deleted them one by one, might not be the way to go but it is working for me so far. I only had about ten or so links, so was easy to do. If you have 1004 might be a bit different 🙂  A milestone week for OpenSim an amazing Group of people producing a first class product with a minimum of fuzz.  Thank you an outstanding and wonderful effort.


An OpenSim week

Great start to this week and we are only at the hump by a few hours.

Opensim release 0.7.1 wow a big step for (virtual) mankind!
Kokua first release? (pre release something) I think great so we can all help.
Kirsten viewer Release 21.(7) RC4
Oh ..Yes something else happened the US President did tell us.( I make no secret out of this Obama is my favourite US President since JFK)

Opensim now basically compatible with mesh, media on a prim and all sorts of other goodies. If you for some reason did not take opensim serious, It is time to rethink. Opensim Development team is a group of highly dedicated people with a lot of knowledge and thankful followers that relish their work. Opensim team thank you, thank you again for your dedication YOU ROCK!

On the viewer front and this is as important as the opensim backend,  Kirsten’s viewer is now up to 21.7 RC4 for me the viewer is working in Diva 0.7.02 and also in the new 0.7.1 ( I use Kirstens mostly for images and video ) I had a few crashes but in between I also had some of the best rendering I have seen to date, so much it demanded new computer components all ordered for next week (yeah I know all a bit crazy) 🙂 Let me say this in regards to viewers when I want something to work, when I am building and all else fails I go back to Hippo I am a bit sad to see Hippo left where it is, I still like Hippo very much.

Ahh yes  this other thing… The President of The USA , However I for one do not take any joy in dancing on a dead persons coffin, I leave that for pirates long time gone ( or so I hope). Life goes on….

Now what is happening the second part of this week?  Maybe more opensim goodies coming our way?