Viewer Visual Update

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Revision as of 08:08, 5 November 2007 by Torley Linden (Talk | contribs)

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Sample screenshot

Project Description

The purpose of this project, internally code-named "Dazzle", is to modernize the visual appearance of the Viewer User Interface. We will use the Viewer's existing skinning hooks wherever possible, documenting and addressing technical blockers as required.

Project Goals

  • Improve visual appearance with modern UI graphics and icons
  • Improve discoverability through expanded use of iconography
  • Improve approachability with a lighter, friendlier color scheme
  • Improve legibility by using dark text on light backgrounds
  • Document technical limitations of current skinning capabilities

Technical Blockers

Following is a list of technical limitations and bugs preventing implementation of the updated visual appearance. There is a longer list of skinning feature requests (such as human-readable texture filenames and the ability to apply gradients to windows) but such features will be incorporated at a later date as part of the Skinning project (see User Interface Roadmap). The modernized look and feel described above could be implemented immediately if the following issues were resolved:

  • VWR-2445 Default IM/chat text color not settable in colors_base.xml
  • VWR-2446 Viewer can't display UI textures that aren't in dimensions of powers-of-two
  • VWR-2447 Text drop-shadow settings aren't configurable in XML, resulting in legibility issues under various color schemes

Sample Files

Try out an early version of the new look for yourself! Download the following file and follow the included instructions to install the preview files into an existing Second Life installation:


To use these files you must have Second Life 1.18.3 (5) installed. The installation is completely reversible by simply re-installing the full version of Second Life 1.18.3 (5) from the Second Life website. This action will not affect any of your saved settings or user preferences. Note that Linden Lab uses Amazon AWS to store and distribute large files.

Check it out and let us know what you think!

Feedback and Ideas

Please leave your comments and suggestions on the discussion page. Once an official First Look Viewer is released you'll also be able to file issues in the Issue Tracker.

Video Tour

If you're curious to see more before you try it, Resident Amras Alder graciously created a video tour of Dazzle. It's a relaxing 5-minute voyage, complete with his calm narration and flamenco music!