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Reader Comments (8)

Posted: Jul 25th 2010 12:59PM cericks said

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I don't really understand- what is a GPVE? The article doesn't really say. If it does it is not very clear. Could anybody tell me exactly what this means?

Posted: Jul 25th 2010 1:12PM (Unverified) said

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It's in the seventh paragraph, just before GPVE is used as a shorthand thereafter. GPVE is shorthand for "General Purpose Virtual Environment"
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Posted: Jul 25th 2010 8:07PM cericks said

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I know, I saw that- I just don't really understand what a "General Purpose Virtual Environment" is, I'm thinking it's an interface that tries to mimic reality?
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Posted: Jul 25th 2010 1:14PM (Unverified) said

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"General purpose virtual environments." Think Second Life, and the late There.

Posted: Jul 25th 2010 2:09PM redsolar said

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Wasn't it Big Spaceship Studios who designed the user interface for Second Life along with their website? I've looked over some of their other portfolio work (including flickr photos) and I like what they've done.

I think it goes to show that in order to create a user interface, you have to have a long history of using Second Life in all its aspects. You can't always be a self-proclaimed expert and just expect to use a tool and "get it." It will put you into the viewpoint of only a fraction of the users - possibly the generic users who play with all the tools but don't fully understand each one in its greater aspect.

For example, if that person had to design a interface for the importation of 3D models, would they understand what each of the properties on that window means? Is it possible that there could be a better way to visualize a import setting than to simply make a drop-down? Would it help to preview the wire-frame structure of a model before importing to show possible signs of polygonal defects that could happen so that they don't lose valuable linden in the process? A designer wouldn't know that and to understand that, they need to have worked with someone who has or have done the 3D process themselves and what obstacles lie ahead in the process.

Posted: Jul 25th 2010 3:29PM (Unverified) said

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The initial draft Viewer 2 UI designs appear to pre-date Big Spaceship's involvement. After the Web-site redesign, it isn't clear how much involvement Big Spaceship had in Viewer 2's UI, as they parted ways with Linden Lab.

The UI design was completed by either their successor, or their successor's successor (I understand there were 2 or 3 design firms over the period), or actually (and I think it more likely) by the Lab itself.
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Posted: Jul 28th 2010 12:15AM (Unverified) said

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Do they give any reason why they don't make things way more customizable? I mean, other than "newbies will get confused"

Posted: Jul 28th 2010 12:50AM (Unverified) said

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I'm not sure that it has really occurred to them. It may be, however, that it would be a mammoth task to rewrite the presentation layer. The code has little clean separation, and the code that handles the UI is almost inextricably bound up with low-level services and communications. It's impossible, at this stage, to rewrite one without rewriting the other.
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