The Open Beta test period is less than a week old but we've gotten some great feedback! Keep it coming :)  Many questions focused on what's new so this blog post answers some frequently asked questions from OpenSimulator users.


Accessibility Improvements:

1) The ability to hear voice equally from all positions was established as a default. This was not available in the Alchemy codebase from which SceneGate was forked. The feature helps users who may have hearing, cognitive, or mobility issues communicate in voice immediately. Without this capability, users only had the option to hear from avatar position or camera position creating a hostile environment for people with disabilities - also known as digital marginalization. While this is equally important for new users in simplified mode, it exists for users in extended mode as well. This is only available for OpenSimulator virtual worlds.

 

2) The default user interface skin for SceneGate provides users the ability to customize the color and contrast with far greater choices than other skins to meet their needs immediately. The improvement provides greater accessibility by design to specifically improve the user experience for those with visual or cognitive issues. This user interface skin is the default for both simplified and extended modes.

 


Onboarding Improvements:

1) To reduce cognitive overload caused by too many menu items and buttons on a new user's screen, a simplified mode was developed and made the default mode. In this mode, a limited number of user menu options are available which also reduces onboarding time.

 

2) Toolbar button defaults presented to new users are also limited to only those needed to learn to use virtual worlds. This effectively applies a bulldozer to the steep learning curve further reducing onboarding time.

 

3) When new users are ready to learn more, they do not need to download and learn how to use another viewer user interface. Extended mode is available in preferences with a few clicks. In this mode, the user is presented with more user interface menu items and toolbar buttons. Their user experience is "extended" rather than changed.

 

4)  The default avatar camera settings were adjusted to provide a more natural, contemporary or modern sense of virtual presence in third person view. This change improves ease of navigation inside virtual structures and applies to all modes. Advanced users are able to change their camera settings temporarily or permanently.

  


Performance Improvements:

1) Dynamic texture loading times were greatly reduced to enhance the user experience. This is unique to OpenSimulator virtual worlds and independent of mode.

 

2) Improved graphics handling to address an issue unique to Windows 10 1903 update and later. Prior to this improvement, the graphics would crash on quit. This is independent of mode.

 


Usability Improvements:

1) Grid Manager error checking was added to prevent a user adding a grid that is not available or that has a typo in the entry. Users also get immediate feedback when this occurs. This provides the ability to easily manage their own grid list or load the short default grid list when needed. The usability mantra is "Don't Make Me Think". This is available in both modes.

 

2) Default toolbar button locations were grouped by function categories based on human computer interaction design review. For simplified mode, the left side button group presents two tools associated with the user's account. The right side button group presents two tools associated with places the avatar can go and how to get there. The center bottom button group presents the commonly used buttons to communicate, navigate, and find people. 

 

 

Latest Beta Test Version

November 2019

SceneGate Viewer: Initial Open Beta Release

 


 New Features 

Accessibility Improvements
1. Voice communication changes
2. New sound option updates
3. New user interface skinning

Onboarding Improvements
1. New simplified and extended modes
2. Separate user interface defaults per mode
3. Simplified mode as default
4. Fix toolbar save changes
5. Help menu add for simplified mode

Usability Improvements
1. New grid manager error checking
2. Ability to manage grid list
3. Ability to restore default grid list

 

 

 Major Modifications 

Accessibility Improvements
1. Starlight CUI Decoupling

Branding Improvements
1. Branding and artwork

Performance Improvements
1. Graphics handling
2. Dynamic texture loading

Usability Improvements 
1. Fix Windows task manager showing Alchemy

 

 

Minor Changes

Accessibility Improvements

1. Preferences default changes
2. Default Camera changes
3. Default Settings updates

Onboarding Improvements
1. Toolbars changes (associated with usability engineering review)
2. Label changes for move panel

Usability Improvements
1. Grid list changes
2. Slider and panel updates
3. Changed AltaVista label to Web
4. About floater updates

 

 

Known Issues 

https://bitbucket.org/imadevelopmentteam/scenegate-viewer/issues/1/request-teleport-not-working-in

 

 

Installing the SceneGate Viewer 

Download the appropriate installer for your operating system from the following link:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/zaqp1j6flmpvzqm/SceneGateSetup_0.1.2%2841404%29.exe?dl=0

 

Windows 10

Instructions for new default Windows 10 installations:

1. Download and run the installer (self-extracting archive digitally signed by Infinite Metaverse Alliance).

2. Open the SceneGate Viewer then select a grid from the grid manager or add your own where you have an account to login at the bottom of the viewer.


If you had a previous version of SceneGate installed, you must do a clean install for it to reflect the changes made since the last test version. Here are the instructions for existing default Windows 10 installations:

1. Navigate to C:\Users\Username\AppData\Roaming then move (if you need to save chat transcripts) or delete the SceneGate folder.

2. Uninstall the SceneGate Viewer from your computer using Control Panel.

3. Download and run the installer (self-extracting archive digitally signed by Infinite Metaverse Alliance).

4. Open the SceneGate Viewer then select a grid from the grid manager or add your own where you have an account to login at the bottom of the viewer.

IMA and Thales Group will present a joint presentation at the upcoming Open Simulator Community Conference 2018 on December 9, 2018 at 09:30 PST. Here is a quick look at what we will be discussing:

  • Grid Audio
  • Audio Avatar
  • Remote Desktop
  • Future Viewer Projects
  • Viewer Research
  • IMA Team Projects
  • Research & Development

There are plenty of great presentations at this two day event on Dec 8-9, 2018. You can check out the schedule here:

https://conference.opensimulator.org/2018/schedule/

Click the register menu to signup! Hope to see you there :)

 
 
 
HG ADDRESS
grid.metaversedepot.com:8002:events
 
Congratulations Beta Testers! You've done a great job testing IMA's new SceneGate Viewer for Open Simulator. We've listened to your feedback and implemented the vast majority of your suggestions as a team.

 

We are preparing the launch of an Open Beta test version for Windows, Linux, and Mac operating systems. Download link for the Windows version will be available soon.

 

So let's get ready to celebrate! On Nov 25, 2019 from 2-6:30 pm PST (5-9:30 pm EST) we will have live DJs and live Singers followed by fireworks and party gifts! This is a public event so everyone is welcome! :) Hypergridders put the hg address in your world map, find, then teleport! Local avs use the region name events in your world map. See you there!

 

 

Thales and Infinite Metaverse Alliance (IMA) team up to work together on the next generation collaborative and training tools.

 

Virtual Reality, increasing connectivity and connection speed are enabling people to work better together. We are on the verge of a next generation of collaborative and training tools where virtual reality will drive  working together to be no longer time and place dependent or restricted by visual boundaries.

Frank Rulof, Business Developer working for Thales in The Netherlands, : “Our engineers of today do not remember the world started to experiment with SecondLife two decades ago. Virtual Reality will in five years be the standard in working together in a global environment. Accessibility and security are key.  It will redefine how individuals work together, how much we travel, how we will teach and learn, and how we will spend our free time. ”

Both IMA and Thales have the ambition to create an OpenSimulator based virtual world environment that facilitates communication and working together in a corporate-, government-, educational- and industrial environment in addition to the opportunities for the general public.

We are developing an integrated virtual environment that can include a multitude of simultaneous open media from pictures, movies and powerpoints to complex 3D models, where teams of engineers can meet to discuss and develop that are continuously accessible anytime from any device. The integrated virtual environment will be accessible in the both the cloud as well as on stand-alone servers and complies with todays security standards for data exchange.

Quote IMA: “The products will have a clearly defined roadmap and the products are maintained and developed by industrial standards. By joining efforts, we will be able to do more in a shorter time and promote the usage better. The core OpenSimulator and viewer source code will stay and be open source. We hope developers will contribute to the growing community.”

OpenSimulator is an Opensource variant of the SecondLife application from Linden Labs in the US. The OpenSimulator Virtual World consists of a server side which controls the Virtual world and all its assets and a client side which encompasses a viewer which renders the virtual world based upon the VR Objects provided by the server in the scene the user is looking at.

More information will be made available as the projects move from private repositories to public repositories for community and developer participation.

About Thales

The people we all rely on to make the world go round – they rely on Thales.
Our customers come to us with big ambitions: to make life better, to keep us safer. Combining a unique diversity of expertise, talents and cultures, our architects design and deliver extraordinary high technology solutions. Solutions that make tomorrow possible, today.  From the bottom of the oceans to the depth of space and cyberspace, we help our customers think smarter and act faster - mastering ever greater complexity and every decisive moment along the way. With 65,000 employees in 56 countries, Thales reported sales of €15.8 billion in 2017.

About IMA

Infinite Metaverse Alliance (IMA) is a Research and Development Philanthropic Foundation formed in response to open source community needs for maximizing societal benefits. Our core mission is a focus on inclusive "design thinking" to advance virtual worlds, virtual reality, and synthetic environments. In IMA you have a champion to make the most of virtual worlds to meet your needs and to push the technology to meet the future as it unfolds.

 

Point of contact for Infinite Metaverse Alliance LLC is This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Point of contact for the Thales Netherlands is This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.