Mesh Project Viewer FAQ

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Contents

General

Does it cost anything to participate in the SL Mesh Open Beta program?

No, the Open Beta program is free, including the uploading of meshes themselves. We are exploring different pricing models that will be introduced when the product is formally launched.

Do I have to learn Viewer 2 to use mesh?

The mesh feature will initially be available in Viewer 2.x and in future Viewer 2 versions; viewers without mesh support will be unable to display mesh content. Linden Lab has no plans to integrate it into Viewer 1.23.

Third party viewers may also choose to add mesh support.

What will I see if I use a Viewer that doesn't support mesh?

Here is a scene filled with mesh objects, as rendered by Viewer 2: Mesh 001.png


Here is the same scene, as rendered by a viewer that does not support mesh: Meshes 001.png

Can I use the mesh-enabled Viewer 2 on the main grid?

Yes. But, mesh functionality will not work on the main grid. Regions need to be mesh-enabled in order to support the uploading and rezzing of meshes. Currently, the mesh regions on Aditi are the only ones enabled with this functionality. Additionally, inventory and L$ changes on Aditi will not carry over onto the main grid.

Is the mesh-enabled Viewer 2 stable?

The mesh-enabled Viewer 2 is tracking the viewer-public branch so all of the changes made in our public open source branch--which comprise most of the development slated for Viewer 2.x--are incorporated into our mesh-enabled Viewer codebase frequently. You will be notified at login when new mesh-enabled Viewers are available. Please keep in mind that this is still an experimental Viewer with a great deal of new functionality, so you may experience higher than normal crash rates.

Will mesh be ported to third party viewers? If so, when?

Yes, SL Mesh will be available in our open source code base soon. We do not have a specific date yet, but we'll update you when it's available.

At that time third party viewers may integrate the new source into their release.

How will permission systems work with meshes?

Meshes have exactly the same permissions system as sculpted prims and textures.

Will SL Mesh create a disadvantage for prim/sculpty builders? Will it upset the economy?

Maybe. The future is hard to predict. Mesh is the next generation of building technologies available in Second Life and offers content creators new ways to quickly create virtual goods and objects in Second Life, greatly enhancing the inworld experience for all Residents and opening up new opportunities to create highly marketable, quality items

Will the existing content tools in the viewer go away?

Absolutely not! As with flexiprims and sculpties, meshes will be added to the growing set of building tools already available in SL. Our goal is always to expand the capability to create compelling experiences in SL. By adding new options like meshes to our builders' tool sets, we're enabling the next generation of content creation while still supporting the classic tools that have existed.

Will mesh be available in other languages?

Today, the SL Mesh Open Beta program is only available in English. When the product is released, it will be available in the standard languages in which we deliver Viewer 2.

Open Beta Program

What do you expect us to do in this Open Beta?

One SL Mesh Open Beta goal is to test many disparate types of COLLADA files and see how they each behave inworld. We know there are many different applications and modeling techniques out there, and we want to ensure that we can correctly support as many as possible. So, we invite you to stress test the regions with large and complex content and to try "unconventional" models so that we can understand feature constraints and limits. If you run into problems, or potential bugs, then definitely file a jira and attach the mesh.

How long will the SL Mesh Open Beta last?

The SL Mesh Open Beta dates are not set yet. We anticipate it will be at least several weeks, to enable everyone the chance to become familiar with this new form of content creation before it is generally available to all Second Life Residents on the main grid.

What will I see on the mesh-enabled regions of Aditi?

The regions will be mostly empty at first, but we're counting on you to help fill them up! We've created 40 regions on our test grid, called Aditi, to help guide you by interest and skill set. Beyond that, we're not placing too many restrictions at first. We want to see what your creativity will produce! See the region list for information on the themes and features of each area.

Intellectual Property and Mesh

Do I retain intellectual property rights of the meshes that I create?

Yes, under the Second Life Terms of Service, you retain any intellectual property rights you have in the meshes and other content that you import into Second Life. It's important to remember that you're responsible for knowing your intellectual property rights, and if you're importing meshes or other content to Second Life, you must have all the necessary rights and permissions.

How can I protect my intellectual property in my meshes?

As we announced in our Content Management Roadmap blog post, we are committed to empowering content creators to better manage and control their content.

Mesh intellectual property rights must be respected during the Mesh First Look program. If we believe that any participant in the program is abusing intellectual property, then we may suspend the Resident from the program and, in egregious cases, from Second Life altogether.

Although meshes will be limited to our test grid during the First Look program, the protections of the Second Life Terms of Service, our Intellectual Property Policy, and Policy on Third-Party Viewers will apply to meshes. If content creators believe their meshes are being infringed, they may submit intellectual property complaints to Linden Lab requesting removal of the content at issue as provided in our Intellectual Property Policy. We are currently testing some early improvements to our intellectual property complaint process. Stay tuned for more content management announcements as we have them.

What if I download or purchase meshes from a service such as Google 3D Warehouse or Turbosquid? Can I use those in Second Life?

Every mesh you acquire from these and other sites is subject to its creator/vendor's particular license terms, and must be adhered to as such. Every individual Turbosquid model contains a license link on its main page, and Turbosquid's general Licensing Terms and FAQ can be found here. Google's 3D Warehouse Terms of Service can be found here. If any meshes violate either the original creator/vendor's license terms, or Second Life's Terms of Service and Policies, then we will handle the matter as previously mentioned.

Performance and Stability

Will regions be stable? Will I be able to access them immediately?

We've created 40 regions to allow many residents to test out meshes concurrently. Because we expect this to be a popular feature, and given that it's running on our test grid, you may experience some bumps and downtime at the beginning. We'll monitor the regions closely and place announcements on our forums about grid status. We may increase the number of regions, if needed.

Will meshes introduce more lag when they debut on the main grid?

Meshes have several advantages over prims and sculpties when it comes to rendering efficiency and quality. First, you need far fewer triangles using mesh vs. prims resulting in higher quality and faster rezzing times. For example, we've found that a very high quality character model took only 15,000 triangles using a mesh, while a far inferior version took 250,000 triangles using prims! Additionally, meshes generally have topology that highly optimized for real time rendering, when compared to prims or scuplties, and the result is much faster rendering speeds. However, meshes are a new asset type for the viewer to download and some may require higher bandwidth usage, potentially longer load times, and potentially higher physics loads on the sims. This is why we're carrying out such an extensive First Look program.

Physics simulation is something that we will also be watching very closely, especially in light of our new Havok 7 Havok_7_Beta_Home implementation, that should substantially optimize mesh collision calculations. Regarding heavier bandwidth and longer load times, we will track bandwidth usage and, if necessary, work to make the streaming mesh format as size-optimal as possible and/or impose stricter quotas on the number of meshes that a region can efficiently support.

Is there a scale limit to mesh files that can be imported into SL?

At the start of the Open Beta, the default prim scale limit will be 64m. As testing continues and we gather data, we will settle on a size that can easily facilitate your creativity while still ensuring region stability.

Is there a file size limit to mesh files that can be imported into SL?

Yes. The maximum mesh asset size after compression is 8MB, roughly equivalent to a 256MB raw COLLADA file. An entire region can support up to 128MB of distinct mesh assets after compression, not including attachments. The size of attached mesh assets is effectively unlimited, but there's no guarantee that all of your attachments will be downloaded by other viewers.

How are meshes stored in SL?

Meshes are stored the same way as all other Second Life assets (textures, scripts, etc.). The mesh asset data is stored as a custom mesh format based on gzip and LLSD.

Advanced

I want to animate my mesh. Why can't I use UUID flipping?

UUID flipping is being throttled on mesh to prevent the creation of objects that animate this way. Learn more about why UUID flipping is bad, and what you can do instead.

How do I mirror a mesh?

Sorry, we don't support this feature yet. We do plan to support mirroring later on.