Tuesday, February 12, 2013

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The Future of OpenSim: Conversion to Unity for Mobile Use

OpenSim running on tablets

This is a photo of the future of OpenSim, because it depicts an OpenSim experience running in mobile. This is possible because the OpenSim space was converted via COLLADA to Unity, a graphics platform that's optimized to run in smartphones and tablets (both iOS and Android). Originally posted by James "Sitearm" Neville, the technology's drawn the interest as a simulation and training tool by the US Army. (Douglas Maxwell, Science and Technology Manager at the Army Research Lab, notes in a group e-mail that "In the past 6 months, I have seen other US Army facilities testing iPad and similar superior devices on the enterprise networks. This technology is coming, we need to plan for it.")

This is made possible by Tipodean Technologies, a startup led by Linden Lab alum Chris Collins, and it's meant for anyone "wanting to increase the deployment capabilities available to them to get to there users no matter what device they are running," he tells me. "Tipodean does the conversion process."

He echoes a point I've made in similar contexts: "The ability to push out [3D content] to tablets is just becoming more and more popular as more people are carrying tablets around with them. Tablets and mobile are being used more and more with the consumer so it is obvious to bring the content out to there." The next trick is bringing a sense of 3D immersion to the tablet, but the co-creator of Myst is confident that's possible too.

Hat tip: Nalates Urriah.

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Hitomi Tiponi

I would have tried this but it seems the Unity Web Player is not compatible with the latest version of JellyBean.

You can bet that Linden Lab is watching mobile developments and will make it's move when it thinks the time is right.

Adeon Writer

I'm a little confused here. Is the tablet connected to an OpenSim server, or something else?

Tari

So i'm trying to wrap my brain around this. I just got off the phone with a Tiger Direct representative doing a side by side comparison of a ultrabook with a typical tablet style device and here's what that conversion came to is this -

Less HD space requiring a Cloud based storage whether you want it or not, Less horse power, and therefore Less programs that can run natively, with the positives being having a touch screen way to do things and less weight .. nope ... when you add the kickstand and keyboard you're right up there in weight again. *sigh* Price? They are either the same or more expensive than today's laptops, desktops and Ultrabooks with the same capabilities.

That seems to narrow it's usage down to movies and search engine based web cruising if you back off the keyboard and use the virtual on - not even social media would I use it like that, cause honestly trying to do that on my smartphone is doable, but annoying as heck. So I can't imagine doing FB and Tweets with an iPad.

All in all that's pretty limiting for the same or more money than Ultrabooks. If you figure in the need for Cloud server for any real storage - ?? can we say the worlds most expensive HD in the world? Sure, you can keep things in one place and it be accessible by multiple machines, but with today's synch apps this isn't really necessary.

So is the iPad/tablet wave hype without any solid rational? Touchscreen aside seems to me its just not a smart way to spend $500 bucks or more. Maybe it's really just for the casual users but for $500+ bucks that's an expensive toy.

When they make one that I can actually use for more than just movies and cruising the web, which I do with my nifty Galaxy4 well enough, then I'll consider plopping down my hard earn money on one and then it'll look and perform like an UltraBook, but named something else so people won't think they got duped into buying a prototype piece of gear that needed beta testers to make it really high functional ... I'm just saying ... what a bag of hype. *shakes head*

Masami Kuramoto

Conversion to Unity, and then? The world is no longer editable; all you can do is walk around in it. And that is supposed to be the future of OpenSim?

Loki

Interesting. One of the thoughts i had last year was a wish that i could export my entire island to a game engine such as Unity3D so that i could build an App based on what i had built.

Would be awesome if you could use SL or Opensim as a building environment then export for easy optimisation for mobile games or stand alone games or experiences.

Im not yet convinced by my own thoughts on this though lol. Still probably would be better to rebuild from ground up in Unity3D

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