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Monday, November 22, 2021

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Jerom Franzic

I tend to agree with much of what Juliette says. The tweaks to GPU usage that's apparently baked into Alchemy really helps a lot. It's great even if one doesn't have the latest and greatest of GPUs from Nvidia and AMD. I know I don't; my main laptop PC runs on a GTX 1050 with 4 GB of VRAM (GDDR5).

While it's not Black Dragon, Alchemy does appear to have better visual quality in the higher graphic settings over some other third party viewers IMO. This is a huge deal if you primarily run Linux as I do and can't be bothered to run BD with Wine. (BD does work for me in Wine for short periods, but that's another story.)

Juliette Jones

:o Oh wow! It's an honor to be featured here, that's probably the coolest thing I've ever done within this community and I've been around for 10 or so years! Thank you very much for the article and hope it helps people understand a bit of why asking for SL to 'just have better performamce' is a bit harder than one might imagine.

...Now if LL could make some kind of streamlined, auto-synced cloud-based asset server like they do with the sims themselves... that could be interesting. It's true that once upon a time being physically closer to LL's servers would yield better load times as... well that's sadly just how the internet infrastructure works! Information, fast as it can be, still needs an amount of time to travel the globe and that small and paltry delay really builds up when you're making thousands of requests to a server hundreds of miles away for every single texture and mesh on your screen. Granted most of which are downloaded to a cache file after... but frankly I've no clue how our assets cache truly works. I would assume you call a UUID to the server, it sends back a missing piece of info your viewer needs to render the texture and then you're golden? Which if requested by the hundreds I imagine can lead to both stalled FPS and graphical glitches. Regardless, I feel using a 'cloud' asset server with multiple synced nodes in major cities of the world, perhaps Amazon's servers like with our current cloud deployment of sims, assets could perhaps be pulled a little closer to home and should lessen load times a fair amount... I hope. The cloud movement broke some things like Caspervend's delivery systems if anyone remembers that! Unsure what exactly caused it but I've a theory the main Caspervend sim saw no traffic, was therefore always shut off by the cloud until called 'on-demand' as LL put it, and thus the scripts and server objects on the sim maybe couldn't send the items to residents since they were offline? Wouldn't know, never did see anyone address the issue it just came and went silently. Still, I mention it as it entails the possible risks and issues we could see with such a change in the asset servers were it something Linden Labs would do.

On the note of Alchemy's strange leap in performance however, I don't believe it's optimizations that just stop at Alchemy's apparent use of your GPU's resources. With Alchemy notably being slower to load textures than any other viewer I've used, mayhaps it intentionally and smartly picks what textures to request and caps out so your PC doesn't fry? Could ask the Alchemy devs if you're interested, very friendly peeps. Had the pleasure of speaking with one personally over Discord!

Sorry for the huge and lengthy reply, not every day I get to geek out on stuff that interests me! Again, TY for reading my earlier post ^^! Is lovely to feel so welcomed in this community, and have been reading this blog for years~!

Melissa Yeuxdoux

On the downloads page, for Linux: "Coming eventually. Someday." Last blog monthly archive: over a year ago. Ouch.

John Smith

I just tried Alchemy for the first time yesterday thanks to this article. The website said the latest version was Sep 2020, but the viewer is getting updates every month. The updates just aren't posted on the website. You'll have to follow the website's link to their Discord, look for the channel for their viewer releases, and then follow the links to their GitLab where you can download the latest version. The difference in the speed of texture loading is incredible. I can't believe how much Alchemy outperforms SL and Firestorm. Textures seem to derender less often too. In Firestorm, I'd have my back to my kitchen fridge for a few minutes, turn around, and the texture of the fridge would have gotten really blurry. But I didn't notice anything like that in Alchemy. I first played SL in June 2010, and for almost 12 years the performance has been bad on every laptop and every viewer. And now for the first time, I am actually having a great experience in SL and my viewer is performing well. All due to Alchemy. I still can't believe Firestorm and SL are so much more laggier. How can they not figure out what Alchemy is doing right, do it as well, and maybe even try to do it better?

Bart

OpenGL was not originally created as a competitor to DirectX. OpenGL came first, several years before the first version of DirectX was released.

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