Server Side Appearance (SSA)The major benefit to SSA, formerly SSB Server Side Baking, is no more cloud avatars. This is because the baking [rendering] of your avatar is moving to the Region Server your Avatar is standing in. This new method of baking eliminates delays in passing rendered information to all viewing your avatar. Currently your avatar is rendered on your PC with information then transmitted to the server to distributed to others viewing you. Avatar rendering performance in the past was tied to the quality of the Internet Connection to and the speed of the the Client PC.
Those who delay upgrading to a modern viewer will still see avatars as before with the exception that the textures rendered by the SSB code may be missing from them leaving a white mask on the prim/layer shape. In addition to the SSB code upgrades, several other updates will also be rolled out at this same time.
Earlier in the week we notified you all that server side appearance (SSA) was rolling out to the entire grid between Tuesday the 20th and Wednesday the 21st. This rollout was the completion of just one phase of this improvement, and I am happy to say, aside from a few glitches it has been mostly a success. Congratulations Linden Lab, job very well done! It isn’t perfect though, as there are still some users who are having appearance troubles but so far these seem to have common and fixable causes. For more info on these and other SSA problems please visit the blog links at the bottom of this post.
Now this was just the first iteration of this work, and as of Friday afternoon Nyx Linden stated that they have plenty more viewer code yet to be tested and released which contains more fixes, improvements and cleanup for SSA. When this code becomes available we intend to merge it into ours and have it available with our next Firestorm release. For those interested you can listen to Nyx speak about the SSA rollout at Friday’s Third Party Viewer Meeting starting at 4 minutes and 50 seconds on the following video recording. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OrHlYMlZhZk
I decided in order to do this justice I would up my game a tad :
I had the setting Ambient Occlusion set = In computer graphics, ambient occlusion attempts to approximate the way light radiates in real life, especially off what are normally considered non-reflective surfaces.
Unlike local methods like Phong shading, ambient occlusion is a global method, meaning the illumination at each point is a function of other geometry in the scene. However, it is a very crude approximation to full global illumination. The soft appearance achieved by ambient occlusion alone is similar to the way an object appears on an overcast day.
So to sum it all up Second Life is looking pretty goddamn pretty . Pretty to me at least. So far I have asked two djs what settings one ran low to mid and the other mid to high neither of which give ambient light. I also made a bit of a study about face lights that people use. These are incredibly bright to me as the following picture shows:
The lights are so bright makes me almost want to dumb down my graphics ability. I shan’t but it makes you wonder… Then there are shadows don’t know whether to have them or not. What do you think?