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Changes to XStreet SL Listings

In preparation for the last data migration from XStreet SL to Linden Lab’s new Marketplace, I’ve had to make a few changes to my XStreet listings.

The Marketplace does not allow you to change the object name associated with a listing, which means if you include the version in the object name and increment it on a new release, you’ll have to recreate the listing lose all the associated reviews.  I have therefore removed the version number from all objects associated with listings on XStreet SL and from now on will include the version number in the object description field.

Secondly, I’ve taken the opportunity to finally rename the old “Style 1” range to the newer “Under Construction” name.  The range itself is still identical and old versions will still update to the newer versions.

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Linden Lab Blocks Emerald from tomorrow

In a not unexpected development, Linden Lab just announced that they will block the Emerald viewer from accessing the Second Life grid from 10am PT on Wednesday 10th.  In addition an email want out at least to recent Emerald users signed by Joe Linden and reproduced below


Emerald Viewer Blocked From Second Life
Dear Second Life Resident,

As of 10am PT Wednesday, September 8, the Emerald Viewer will be blocked from logging in to Second Life as a result of violations of our Policy on Third Party Viewers. Residents who have been using any version of the Emerald Viewer will need to use a different Viewer to access Second Life.

You can download the official Second Life Viewer, developed by Linden Lab, here.
Or, you can learn more about alternative Viewers, developed by third parties, here.

Please be aware that attempting to circumvent our blocking to access Second Life with a banned Viewer is a violation of the Policy on Third Party Viewers and may result in the loss of one’s account. For more information, please read the blog post.

Joe Linden
VP, Platform & Technology Development

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Emerald: The Phox goes rogue

In my previous post I noted that a final release of Emerald would  be released and questioned how advisable it would be to trust the final release on Emerald.  I had hoped this this release would be clean and comply with requirements for the TPV Directory even if it wasn’t going to be listed there.

That isn’t going to be the case.

The final release of Emerald is going to be built by Phox, probably the least trustworthy person left on the Emerald team, and appears not only to have controversial files that LL ask be removed intact, but will have the ability to allow the user to spoof the channel name.  The channel name is, by default, how LL knows which viewer your using.  Allowing the user to change it on demand is a common feature of copybot clients and I wouldn’t be surprised if Phox simply replicated the changes from the Onyx codebase.  Phox once again shows his true colours, preferring to attack Second Life rather than step aside with dignity.

The updated at the top of that page is rather interesting too.  If this is true, Fractured, Skills, Discrete and Phox and their alts will soon no longer be welcome on the grid and the CDS data collection system will be no more.  I really do hope this is true as it shows that Linden Lab are willing to take steps to protect their customers, in this case it has taken far too long, but their actions now set a precedence for the future.

On another note, Arabella has apparently distributed a notecard within second life accusing Jessica Trinity of attempting a hostile takeover.  Unfortunately I haven’t been able to get my hands on this notecard as of yet (if you have a copy, feel free to drop one on my profile in SL) but Jessica has posted a rebuttal on her blog.  Given that Discrete and Skills had stepped down already and only the stubbornness of Phox was threatening the continuation of the Emerald project,  her actions appear to me to be intended to save Emerald by removing the last thorne in its side.  Of course we only have Jassica’s word against Arabella’s as to what happened and what the intentions of the involved were, plus no way of knowing what would have happened after Jessica’s attempt if it had succeeded.

The excerpt of dev chat in that post, if accurate, is also interesting, showing Phox’s egotistical attitude to Emerald and his willingness to destroy the project if he can’t make his buck out of it.  Would Emerald fail without Phox?  Possibly, but Emerald defiantly died with him and Phox and Fractured are the ones that killed it.

And finally, some people have been asking what they can use instead of Emerald if LL blocks it, especially those depending on its RLVa implementation.  Once again I’d like to recommend Imprudence, its has a full RLVa implementation, decent build tools, is actively developed and seems to be heading in the right direction.  And yes, for those of you that its important too, it has jiggle boobs too.

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Emerald: The End

It looks like Linden Lab made some demands on the Emerald development team that didn’t make it into the public domain before now.

Now, I made a promise to everyone to disclose the remaining requirements from LL. Those final two requirements that were given to us by LL, was to have a release out by Friday September the 3rd that would not support emkdu or llkdu even if one of the files was present, and that Lonely Bluebird, Skills Hak and Discrete Dreamscape be removed from the project. The alternative was that LL would block the viewer from access to the SecondLife Grid. While Discrete and Skills gracefully stepped down, Lonely refused.

(From the first link above)

So Linden Lab are putting their foot down on who is allowed to be on development teams.  As I said previously, loss of these three developers pretty much leaves Emerald with only one active developer. Phox (aka Lonely) is obviously willing to kill the whole project by refusing to leave and locking other developers out of the servers.  Respect where it is due to Skills and Discrete for stepping down when requested to.

If that was not enough, Fractured Crystal is applying for a trade mark on the Emerald Viewer name.  This to me seem the petty attempt by someone caught doing wrong and made to account for it to get their own back at the development project just because he can.  It would be interesting to if challenging the registration on the basis that he left the project of his own accord before applying for the trademark (assuming timing here) and thus ceded rights to the name to the person or team that took over.

If anyone has any doubts about the kind of people who were in charge of Emerald, the behaviour of Phox and Fractured should clear that right up.

Over on the Modular Systems blog (still using that huh?) Arabella announces The End saying:

Alas this was not  to be. Linden Lab has made demands of the team that are impossible to meet. Among the demands not listed publicly elsewhere was to publicly release an RC without any ability to load the emkdu or llkdu files. This was do-able. The final demand was to ‘delete’ 3 key members of our team. While making this demand, Linden Lab was quite aware that this was effectively the guillotine to the project.

I don’t see that these demands were unreasonable or impossible to meet.  Removing the ability to detect and load a DLL should be a simple enough task that Moy could able to handle easily.  The removal of Skills, Discrete and Phox from the team may have been sufficient to encourage others to join, certainly with a compliment viewer available the team could have started rebuilding its reputation.

So what now for Emerald users?  Arabella continues:

For you, the user, what this  means is that there will not be any further releases of the Emerald Viewer after today. The existing releases will continue to operate until Linden Lab decides to terminate their access and end Emerald once and for all.

There will be one final version of the Emerald Viewer released here later today; that is, the viewer we’ve been working on for the past six months. It would be a shame to let the efforts of the developers who put so many unpaid hours into this project go to waste.

I’ll leave it to you, the reader, to decide whether to trust it.

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