Archive for February, 2011

Imprudence 1.3.1 Released

Imprudence 1.3.1 is now available! This is a follow-up to 1.3.0, to tie up a few loose ends before we move on to 1.4. If you are using Imprudence 1.3.0, you should definitely update to 1.3.1. If you’re using the Imprudence Experimentals, you will probably want to wait. We’re planning to release a new Experimental soon (probably next Friday), with streaming audio definitely working on Windows (thanks to McCabe’s hard work taming GStreamer), and possibly also on Mac.

Imprudence 1.3.1 does not include the new features from the Experimentals, like spell checking, chat translate, or local textures. It also does not have the new experimental media system, which is good news for Windows and Mac users!

Linux users, please be aware that you will need to have GTK+, ATK, freetype, cairo, pango, and pixman installed on your system to use this version. We no longer package those libraries with the viewer, because they would break the clipboard and file chooser dialogs when the system version differed from the packaged version.

As always, we ask that you post your feedback in the forums. We rely on your reports and feedback to make Imprudence better!

Here are the highlights for this release. Read the release notes for the full list of changes.

  • Added support for the new Second Life maximum group limit.
  • Added new options in Preferences > Fonts: “Font size multiplier” and “Force integer font sizes”. (Note: increasing the font size too much may cause some parts of the UI to mess up or look bad.)
  • Fixed the mouse not being able to interact with the world after using snapshot freeze frame (#629).
  • Added a “news bar” on the bottom of the login screen, which loads a web page with links to the latest Imprudence blog posts. You can disable loading that page by changing the “NewsBarURL” debug setting to nothing.

    Here’s what the news bar looks like (click for a larger image):

    Screenshot of the news bar



Ahoy fellow Imprudinistas and Kokuans!

How was your Christmas? Your New Years? Your Hanukkah? Your winter vacation? I feel like I’ve missed so much, I want to ask about them all!

As Jacek mentioned in her previous post, we’ve been kind of limping along over here for a while. Personally, this has been a pretty rough winter for me. I lost my grandmother to cancer on Christmas Eve after several weeks of fighting in the hospital (she was 74). We managed to have a good Christmas just the same, but the sudden loss affected all of us in my family quite deeply.

For most of January, I spent my time in bed sick with the flu, which left me vulnerable to a nasty strain of strep throat. (If you’re in the US and haven’t gotten your flu vaccine yet, I highly recommend you do so soon. This flu season is going to be a long one. I’m still coughing up bits of lung.)

Needless to say, Imprudence and Kokua have taken a backseat while I took care of myself and other responsibilities.

But, time heals. It’s exciting to compile the viewer and feel active again! I truly have missed everyone who’s taken an interest in this project along with us. It’s nice to reconnect with old friends in the community, all the while meeting new ones along the way. I know I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again: you guys rock. Seriously :)

Now then, specifics. I don’t have any timeline for when the next Imprudence Experimental will be out, but it’ll have Display Name support as well as more changes to the media system, and a few other goodies. I’m very eager to get it out, as it’ll mean we’re one step closer to finalizing 1.4. As far as Kokua goes, I’m not working on it at the moment so I can’t give more information than what’s already been said. Rest assured, when an alpha release is ready we’ll let you know.

In the meantime, I hope everyone has a pleasant Valentine’s Day tomorrow! If you forget to get your sweetheart flowers and want someone to blame, remember: it was all Chaucer’s fault. <3

Status Update (February 8)

I was waiting for some good news or progress to share with you guys, but unfortunately those things are in short supply lately. Simply put, we’re (still) struggling with low motivation, especially McCabe and me, and development is barely limping along.

So, rather than talk about the progress on the viewers (which isn’t much to speak of), I’ll tell you what has been going through my mind.

For the past several months, rather than writing code or contributing much to either viewer, I’ve been (or at least felt) bogged down with administrative duties. These are things that need to be done to keep the project afloat and sailing smoothly, but they do not provide any real forward momentum in and of themselves. Actually, they tend to sap my energy and dampen my enthusiasm to work on anything related to the project or viewers. And since I don’t have the energy to tackle these chores, they just keep piling up, sapping me more and more. It’s definitely not a good cycle to be stuck in!

The vacation in December provided a welcome reprieve, but didn’t solve the underlying problem. Somehow, I need to find a balance between administration and development, as well as a balance between Imprudence and Kokua, and a balance between this project and the rest of my life. I’m not sure yet how I’ll do that, but it’s something I’ll strive for.

I wrote in the January 21 status update that we were working on a bugfix release of Imprudence, version 1.3.1. I had hoped that we would be able to release it within a week. But, I decided that we ought to try updating to OpenJPEG 1.4, to see if it worked well enough that we could finally afford to disable LLKDU. Unfortunately, because of our motivational issues, we never got around to updating OpenJPEG, and that decision brought the release to a halt. I think we’ll have to postpone updating OpenJPEG until some later date, and just release what we have so far.

Imprudence 1.4 is in a similar state of limbo, due to the media system. Finishing and testing the VLC plugin is beyond our grasp at the moment, because of those same motivational issues. Instead, we’ll have to fall back on our old “friend”, GStreamer. But, at least it’s now a plugin, so it won’t crash the viewer when it breaks. Obviously, we’d prefer to have VLC, but getting Imprudence 1.4 finished and working (through whatever means) is vital to us regaining our momentum.

As for Kokua… yes, that’s also in limbo at the moment. It’s clear that our original plan to start releasing Experimentals in February isn’t going to happen. That plan was assuming we’d be able to release Imprudence 1.4 in December or January, which seemed realistic before the media system issues arose. I’ve often considered whether it would be better for the project to forget Imprudence 1.4 and just focus fully on Kokua. That’s certainly tempting, but currently we still intend to get the media sysem working and finish up 1.4.

So, that pretty much sums up the status of the project at the moment. It’s not all rainbows and lollipops, as you can see!

I’m sure many of you are wondering if this is the end for Imprudence/Kokua. I’ve wondered as much too, but I don’t think it is. I view this as simply a trial or crisis that forces us to take a look in the mirror and adjust how we do things. I’m confident that we’ll be able to learn a few lessons, get through this, and come out stronger than before.

Thank you for your patience, understanding, and support as we navigate these rough waters.