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Friday, October 28, 2011

Growing Up



when LL announced mesh designs could be brought into Second Life's virtual world i thought the huge 3D artist's community (Renderosity, Daz3D, Poser, et al) would embrace our little world and bring us all manner of fantastic new wares. so i waited.

when the ultra secret beta testing was over and the gates were flung open i thought the world would be inundated with newness. so i waited.

when the initial offerings trickled into the feeds i jumped in with both feet. unfortunately, in the majority of cases, i came away disheartened.

not only did no new artists come into the world, only one existing SL artist, Siddean Munro of SLink, showed any formidable skills for what i had thought rigged polygonal mesh designs could be. it would seem, to me, that the initial technical aspects at this stage of development, for lack of any better discernable phraseology, SUCK!

that's not to say that it won't get any better. there is a move towards helping the Lab get the coding right. currently, the worst failure of mesh's implementation pertains to wearable fashion.  i'm not so sure just how many residents want to show off a designer's art in all aspects of their animated Second Life (as opposed to the fashion blogosphere's overly reworked static 2D renders).

i, for one, thought the greatest potential of mesh was the ability (read: hope/hype/dream) to have the clothing conform to the movement of the avatar within our unique and dynamically activated virtual world. let's pray that Karl Stiefvater (the former Qarl Linden, principal coder for the Lab's implementation of sculpties) can move us along towards that dream.

presently, most top of the line wearable sculpties look fantastic (without considering the laughably deficient disability of adapting to avatar movement). there was absolutely no where we could go with the intermediary mesh technology Qarl's sculpties brought. should one ever hope to realize a fully animated wearable design we had to go full mesh, full UV mapping, full skeletal rigging.

the most significant development of SL's world is looming on the horizon. now that Qarl's got the funding necessary to bring us what is needed the revolution begins again. here's hoping my own attempts at wearable art can adapt to any avatar's size/shape. until then, they sure are nice to look at.

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