OpenSim grids still adapting to mesh

Even though OpenSim had mesh support the very next day after Second Life did — and, in fact, one branch of OpenSim, realXtend, had mesh since 2008 — OpenSim users have been slower to adopt mesh than residents of Second Life.

One reason is that most grids do not dictate what viewers their residents must use, or force viewer updates on them. As a result, many OpenSim users stick with older viewers that they know and love, even when those viewers might not support mesh.

Second Life users, by comparison, get automatic updates if they use the official viewer, and the company has been aggressive in trying to move users away from third-party viewers that don’t support mesh.

In fact, according to numbers released last week by lead Phoenix viewer developer Kadah Coba, more than 97 percent of Second Life residents can see mesh objects. (Thanks to Daniel Voyager for the heads up.)

In OpenSim, the  number of people using mesh varies by grid — from almost none, to about half, to almost all. Some grid owners report that mesh objects render more easily in viewers than traditional prim and sculptie objects.

By the way, for those new to OpenSim — all objects in a virtual environment are technically mesh objects, meaning that they are made up of a lattice skeleton of many tiny polygons. However, it’s only been since late 2010 that standard mesh objects created in third-party 3D modeling programs could be uploaded to Second Life and OpenSim. Prior to that, only content created using Second Life’s unique prim and sculptie system could be created or uploaded into Second Life and OpenSim environments.

InWorldz testing mesh

The most popular grid, InWorldz, does not currently support mesh. But that may be changing, as the grid announced on Wednesday that it is testing a mesh-based viewer on its beta grid and uploaded a mesh waffle. (Again, thanks to Daniel Voyager for the tip.)

Beta testers have been playing around with mesh on the InWorldz grid for a couple of months now, and with official viewer support imminent, a full-scale mesh rollout is expected  after the bugs are ironed out.

With more than 6,000 active users as of mid-February, InWorldz has more active users as the next eight most active grids combined.

InWorldz uses a customized version of OpenSim on its grid, and has its own scripting and physics engines, as well as its own custom viewer, so adding mesh required work on the part of grid developers.

For grids based on the standard release of OpenSim, however, rolling out mesh was a comparatively simple process of updating the server code to the latest version. As a result, most other grids, including InWorldz’ chief commercial competitor, Avination, have had mesh for a couple of years now.

Getting residents to use it, however, is a different story.

Mesh widespread on UFS Grid

Take, for example, the niche science fiction-themed UFS Grid.

“Almost each region in UFS Grid has at least a few meshes,” grid technology manager Ivan H. told Hypergrid Business. He is also known as Ares Q in-world.

He said he can tell which regions have mesh objects because they produce a console message of a “caching error” when the regions boot up.

Viewer statistics from UFS Grid. (Data source UFS Grid.)

However, almost half of UFS Grid residents are still using Imprudence, a reliable workhouse of a viewer that does not support mesh — and is also no longer supported by developers.

The popularity of older viewers creates a problem for mesh. As long as many people are still using them, few people want to upload mesh objects or wear mesh clothes. And without a lot of mesh to see, users are hesitant to switch to a new viewer.

This is the case for FleepGrid owner Chris Collins, who is also a project manager in Instructional and Research Computing at the University of Cincinnati. She is known as “Fleep Tuque” in-world. FleepGrid is a popular hypergrid destination for users looking for education-related freebies.

Chris Collins

“I feel like mesh is a chicken-egg problem,” Collins told Hypergrid Business. “Many people still use Imprudence and other viewers that don’t support mesh, so I am hesitant to use mesh on FleepGrid since I want anyone who visits to be able to view the content there.  At the same time, developing content that isn’t reusable in other platforms and environments almost seems silly.  Perhaps if I were more skilled at Blender or Maya I’d feel more push to develop in mesh, but for now, I’m still mostly creating in non-mesh formats — sculpt and prim.”



Switching to a new viewer requires that users find and download the new software, configure it to access their favorite grids, and learn a new user interface.

Firestorm, Singularity, Astra, Zen, Kokua, Teapot and Rainbow viewers all support mesh. Meerkat, another Imprudence-era viewer, does not.

“I’m using Kokua, and just tried to upload a mesh from OpenSim Creations, and it worked like a charm,” he said.

Are the UFS Grid stats inline with those of other grids? On OSgrid, the second-largest OpenSim grid by active users and the largest by land area, assistant grid administrator Key Gruin posted a snapshot of 136 users that showed that 43 percent were using a version of the Imprudence viewer. OSgrid has had mesh for a couple of years.

3rd Rock Grid was also quick to adopt mesh after it was added to the standard distribution of OpenSim.

“So far, though, there has not been a huge amount of use of mesh, as far as I’m aware, just sporadic individual uses here and there around the grid,” said 3rd Rock’s technology manager Thoria Millgrove.

Part of the reason could be that many residents are still using older viewers.

“Our residents use a wide range of viewers, but I would estimate that about 50 percent use various mesh-enabled ones,” Millgrove told Hypergrid Business.

Kitely users opt for mesh

One way to get OpenSim users to use a mesh viewer is to make it the default recommended viewer on your grid. Better yet — download and install the viewer for your users if they don’t have one yet.

That is the case with Kitely, where individual regions can be launched from a website. Once users arrive and click on “enter world”, Kitely automatically creates avatars for them based on their Facebook or Twitter accounts — or standard email-based registration — installs a plugin, and then downloads and installs a viewer and logs the users in automatically.

Kitely CEO Ilan Tochner

As a result, 85 percent of logins are done with mesh-enabled viewers, according to grid owner Ilan Tochner.

And most of the residents who log in with Imprudence tend to use it just for content uploads, and use the mesh-enabled Firestorm viewer for everything else, Tochner said.

“People are uploading mesh-based avatars, clothing and objects to Kitely,” he said. “For example, the upcoming community-developed Kitely Plaza already includes quite a few mesh-based buildings and sculptures.”

According to Tocher, mesh enables the creation of professional-looking content that renders more easily than traditional prim-based objects.

The urban wasteland area is one of seven themed sections on the Kitely Plaza, currently under construction. This snapshot shows various mesh-based building components, and four mesh avatars. The flying guy is Ilan Tochner’s avatar, wearing mesh pants. (Image courtesy Ilan Tochner.)

“Well-built meshes usually provide the same, or better looking, results than can be created with prims and can often do so with an order of magnitude less triangles,” he said. “Given that the amount of mesh usage in-world is growing quite quickly, people who aren’t using a mesh-enabled viewer are missing out on better visuals and the potential for better viewer performance.”

Littlefield bets on mesh

Littlefield is not only a community on OSgrid, but its own separate grid as well, and the separate grid is fully mesh-enabled, said grid owner Walter Balazic.

OSgrid, has, of course, been supporting mesh for a couple of years now.

And Littlefield is making a big mesh push.

“We have some entirely mesh sims, and several mesh stores in the malls there,” Balazic told Hypergrid Business.

The grid also offers Blender training classes at its building center, he added.

Today, 95 percent of the grid’s users have mesh-enabled viewer.

“Firestorm for OpenSimulator is our grid’s preferred viewer,” Balazic said. “I only know of one resident not using a mesh viewer.”

The grid is currently in a beta, development phase, however, and is expected to go live in six weeks. As more residents arrive, the proportion of those using older viewers may increase.

Startup AviWorlds grid picks mesh viewer as default

One advantage of starting a new grid is that your users might not have committed to an OpenSim viewer yet.

Mesh objects on AviWorlds grid. (Image courtesy AviWorlds.)

This might be the reason why so many AviWorlds residents use a mesh-enabled viewer.

“About 98 percent use Firestorm’s OpenSim build viewer and they see mesh,” grid owner Alexsandro Pomposelli told Hypergrid Business.

Alexsandro Pomposelli

AviWorlds was founded in late 2012, and has quickly become one of OpenSim’s more popular grids.

“We have a bunch of creators creating furniture, all the way to avatars, in mesh,” said Pomposelli. “They are telling me that mesh is better in OpenSim than in Second Life. A lot of AviWorlds’s own regions have mesh — our main builder uses it a lot and says it’s the way of the future.”

Mesh allows more realistic training environments on Virtual-EPI

For consulting firm Virtual Event Planners International, mesh allows for more realistic environments in their training simulations.

David Cranmer

“This is a timely topic for me,” said president David Cranmer, who manages the company’s Virtual-EPI grid. “Over the last six months or so I’ve been playing with mesh and importing things from the Google 3D Warehouse just to see how they would appear.”

He said he also began learning to how to use Blender, a free mesh-creation program.

The immediate results were to improve the looks of his grid, and his personal Sim-on-a-Stick nine-region minigrid.

“The biggest use, however, will be for telecommunications training,” he told Hypergrid Business. “The ability to build realistic telecom rooms and outside plant facilities in OpenSim will improve my business.”

Residents slow to use mesh on DreamNation

On DreamNation, a mid-sized roleplaying grid, most residents have mesh-enabled viewers.

“I’d estimate over 80 percent,” grid owner Waki Janus told Hypergrid Business. The most popular viewers? Cool VL, followed by Firestorm.

But residents have been slow to take advantage of the functionality, he said.

“The reason is probably that mesh is still a mystery to many of our residents,” he said. “As we don’t have a very big market place there is not a lot of products for retail. We tend to make a lot of stuff ourselves and pick-up on mesh therefore been slow. However main use of it seems to be in creating realistic body parts and in making unusual avatars, dragons and things like that. ”

Mesh Dragon by Jin Falta, a prototype developed on DreamNation for adventure and quest games sims. (Image courtesy DreamNation.)

The grid is considering some big mesh projects, such as themed quest, action, and racing regions.

“We are really excited by the potential of mesh and several of our members are very keen to explore that potential over the next few months especially as we get the grid bedded down and operating well,” he said. “But this is also dependent on the development of a decent physics engine for open sim that is not proprietary to individual commercial grids.”

On ScienceSim, work continues to make BulletSim work with mesh

Mesh is enabled on all the regions run by Intel on ScienceSim, a non-profit research-oriented grid, according to Mic Bowman, who leads the virtual world infrastructure research project at Intel.

Mic Bowman

“And we have all tried to import mesh models at different times,” he told Hypergrid Business.

However, Intel engineers aren’t building a lot of mesh content on the grid because they’re busy with other projects, such as making sure the BulletSim physics engine works well with mesh objects.

Intel engineer Robert Adams has been contributing BulletSim updates to OpenSim weekly, according to the latest OpenSim development summaries.

BulletSim promises to be a more useful physics engine for OpenSim than the current default engine, ODE, with better support for vehicles and linked objects, among other advances.

Educating biology students without mesh

University of New Orleans biology instructor Stephen Gasior runs the VIBE group of grids, all of which have mesh enabled — but he doesn’t see a lot of mesh building going on.

Stephen Gasior

“It seems unnecessary, however nice it is, for our main project goals,” he told Hypergrid Business.

The grids are home to a number of projects, including a Population Genetics and Selection simulatorvirtualizations of archaeological sitesinvestigated by anthropology, history, and sociology faculty at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, the Cardiac Electrical Activity Simulator and the Pediatric Dentistry Simulation by Lazaros Papadopoulos of Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, and Project Alexandria, which is both a virtual library of books and collection of scripts that allow users to synchronize documents between OpenSim notecards and a filesystem.

All the grids are accessible via hypergrid teleport.

According to Gasior, roughly half of grid users use the Firestorm viewer, which supports mesh, and half use Imprudence, which doesn’t.

Cash for mesh at SkyLine Grid

SkyLine Grid is a small grid, but it’s betting on mesh, offering money — well, virtual credits — in exchange for mesh content.

Based on console logs, the grid’s 60-odd residents use mesh viewers “for the most part,” said grid owner Fabio Basile.

The all-mesh Ground Zero build on SkyLine Grid. (Image courtesy Fabio Basile.)

“I encourage my users to take advantage of it by providing free mesh uploads,” Basile told Hypergrid Business.

In fact, free uploads is a common practice on OpenSim grids.

Easy loading on OrionGrid

OrionGrid founder and OSgrid resident Ron Brown says he likes mesh because it not only looks great, but renders more easily in the viewer than prims and sculpties.

OrionGrid is a small grid for friends and family, but is accessible to the public via hypergrid teleport.

“I have played with the designing of mesh, but I am not very good at it,” Brown said, explaining that he is mostly a programmer and scriptor. But he uses mesh on both OrionGrid and on OSgrid.

Lost Castle was mesh from day one

One of the prettiest places to see mesh in OpenSim is the Lost Castle grid.

“The Lost Castle Grid is all dedicated to mesh,” said founder Per Eriksson. “That is how it started — it was our test grid, set up solely to test mesh on OpenSimulator.”

Per Eriksson

Eriksson also owns the Troppo Club grid, and is the owner of Troppo Design, a virtual worlds development firm based in Australia.

The grid evolved from a single region to a four-by-five region minigrid. Eriksson estimates that 90 percent of the content on the grid is mesh.

“Obviously, we all use mesh-enabled viewers,” he told Hypergrid Business.

The Lost Castle is a showcase grid for the company, and is accessible via the hypergrid.

“It is a meant as a grid to show what can be done in OpenSimulator in relation to historical reconstruction,” he said. The next project is a recreation of the main building in the Sendai castle down, dating back to around 1600.

The meshes themselves are created in either Blender or in Shade 13, he said. Share 13 is commercial 3D modeling software.

According to Eriksson, mesh is more efficient than prims and sculpties, can be created with advanced 3D modeling tools, and is usable on multiple platforms.

“It facilitates collaboration during building, and the final product can be sold on the open market to be used in many types of 3D environments,” he said.

Eriksson added that his team has found that it is easier to upload mesh to OpenSim than to Second Life.

“We understand that not everyone use a mesh-enabled viewer however we are convinced in the future more and more people will change to that type of viewer,” he said.

Read more about mesh in part 2 of this story: Mesh in OpenSim part 2: Even meshier.

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Maria Korolov

Maria Korolov is editor and publisher of Hypergrid Business. She has been a journalist for more than twenty years and has worked for the Chicago Tribune, Reuters, and Computerworld and has reported from over a dozen countries, including Russia and China. Follow me on Twitter @MariaKorolov.

31 Responses

  1.' hack13 says:

    This is quite an interesting article, mesh was introduced to Aurora-Sim about the same time as OpenSim, and works just as well as it does on Windows. However on Aurora-Sim we have the mesh to prim ratio working for the most part, allowing land impact to show properly.

    •' Hannah says:

      Kind of a little misleading though -the problem isn’t with opensim; opensim had mesh a couple of years before SL had it.

      The problem is with the people who don’t want to give up imprudence (for a variety of reasons).

  2.' Nick Zwart says:

    On all the projects I work on we do not use mesh because the Imprudence still is the favorite viewer. Why Imprudence,, because the user interface is working fine for education. Also the search is still working fine, out of the box.
    We tried and also use Firestorm but there are some changes to be made to the UI to fully use it for our projects. A bit too much changes for teachers.

    •' Joe Builder says:

      Exactly Nick Imprudence is the prefered Viewer in all Opensim is has far less problems Then the cloud making Firestorm

  3.' WhiteStar says:

    Good Article Maria ! .. I’d point out a small detail in regards to using a Viewer which is mesh capable. The graphics card requirement to support mesh capable viewers is also a key point for people not adopting V3 viewers. The simple Intel or ATI onboard video’s just don’t have enough power. Most laptops & netbooks which are so popular are too under-powered graphics wise. People with a proper PC (desktop) have the options of upgrading their video cards but most laptops etc do not have that option.

  4.' Linda says:

    Great article Maria. I have to say that I saw the InWorldz waffles and they looked yummy.
    Actually I think most things look better in mesh but in many cases I don’t like the look of mesh avatars and mesh clothing. It tends to look sort of plastic.

    I did some mesh content on IMVU -using meshes that I derived from mesh creators and I didn’t like it so much.

    Creating mesh is super simple to me. Much easier than sculpties. Texturing is the thing I haven’t learned yet and I never really learned that with sculpts either. So I guess I am going to stay behind the times for a little while longer because I simply don’t feel driven to learn something new right now.

  5.' AviWorlds says:

    The only problem I see with imprudence viewer is that it makes avatars clouds all the time. But it is very light and people like that in particular. The V3 viewers are very heavy at least that is what feel.

  6.' Joe Builder says:

    I have to agree 200% with Chris from fleepgrid, As for Mesh more than half of openism residents don’t see it for 1. For 2 its not a builders tool, anyone can download it for free from many online sites such as Google Warehouse. Whats the fun in downloading objects with out building them? Mesh to me and many others think it belongs in SL, being all the old school builders are gone. and prims and sculpts takes alot of creativity which many lack. But I can understand the fact many starving grids need content and Mesh is the best way I suppose.

    •' Reina Benoir says:

      I don’t know what you mean by mesh not being a builder’s tool. When I’m trying to make a mesh item I am certainly building as much as I would be if I were merely manipulating prims.

      •' Joe Builder says:

        Sounds like you ain’t doing something right.

        •' Reina Benoir says:

          You’ve still not explained yourself. It certainly takes effort to go into a 3d program and make something. Not all mesh is merely downloading stuff from Google Warehouse. How is going through the effort of creating something in the program for upload not building?

          Or maybe it is YOU who isn’t doing something right? I don’t know as you’ve not explained what you meant.

          •' Joe Builder says:

            I only meant that creating a statue or a castle or anything else out of Prims alone is a feat not everyone can do, It takes skill to put cube A with Cube Z to create a realistic Object this was done by old school builders who built SL what it is today. Mesh as you say and correct Is a simple 3D program that removes the building skill to create such objects, Example a Castle of extreme realism is over 800 to 1000 prims where the lesser Mesh can be done in 60 and take about 20 minutes to do. Now you can also do as 85% of the so-called builders do and download it from many online sites and then say 🙂 Look what I built haha Please…Mesh has its place in SL where land impact is a issue….and Viewers are a must…Many come to opensims to create (Prims) and maybe this is why the preferred Viewer is imprudence. Opensims is by far not SL. Again im a builder and use whats available no need for me to use a outside program other than for textures. Hope this clears things up with you. being you must be new to Virtual worlds 🙂

          •' Reina Benoir says:

            Actually I’ve been in virtual worlds for quite some time thank you very much your condescension is unnecessary and unappreciated.

            Using a 3d program to make an object takes skill and it’s not something you can slap together in 20 minutes and expect good results and then you still have to work at texturing. It takes skill and time and I don’t think you do anyone a favor belittling the process. People who WANT to build and want to be sure of the permissions of the items they use will build their own so to claim that because someone put up a mesh doesn’t mean they didn’t build anything is a less than convincing argument.

          • Ener Hax says:

            “Using a 3d program to make an object takes skill”

            indeed it does!!! anyone who thinks otherwise has never cracked open anything like Blender 3D! serious mad skillz to create mesh-based 3D objects (as well as massive rendering times)

          •' Chav Paderborn says:

            Why go outside to make textures? Don’t you just steal them from google like 85% of so-called builders? *bats eyelashes innocently*

          •' Joe Builder says:

            Are you talking about Google Warehouse? Now wonders whats in your eyes 🙂

    • Mesh, by giving granular access to individual faces, edges and vertices is the most powerful approach to creating unique and complex objects yet. When used for complex and detailed building challenges, mesh work is extremely demanding, both in skill level and time. I worked with prims and sculpted prims for many years before turning to mesh, and the increase in complexity is exponential.

      With the opportunity to use mesh, there are virtually no limits to object complexity and form, but the learning curve for realizing complex objects with mesh is steep. And it’s not just a question of learning the application interface. There are many skills to master for creating efficient, deliberate and accurate mesh topology. To say otherwise is to not understand just how deep the craft of mesh building goes.

      If I were recommending a building strategy I would not start with the technology anyway, but with the desired functionality and impressions desired. What might suffice as “realistic” in one situation might be wholly inadequate in another.

      •' Joe Builder says:

        i completely understand what your saying my comment was SL virtual worlds was made to be a virtual world with users and creators to create and build what was intended and that being said its Prims. If you ever visit SL Second Life and look at some of the older builds you may scratch your head and say ‘Damn they made that out of prims” yes they did those people are known as Builders. Now with todays technology 3D max/Blender/Google Download has taken that away and the demand for prims with land impact is now important being of rising costs. I am a straight up and down builder if I cant make it out of Prims and a few sculpts I ask myself why am I here in virtual worlds…….There is many many online applications for the designer of 3D max stuffs. Im just speaking for myself and a few old timers who may never see a SL type world become a 3D program Download for the 3D designers. Sadly these people don’t have a clue how to build what Virtaul worlds was intended for at day 1.

        •' Vanish says:

          Where can I see one of those wonderful builds of yours?

        • Okay, so I understand better that you were saying the early sim builders did amazing things with prims and the ability nowadays to download complex pre-built meshes is not building as much as it is assembling which is not the same kind of skillset or creative challenge. If so, I agree that people have created really great builds using nothing but prims and as in real life, there is much to admire about those who’ve had to make everything from scratch, whereas much in today’s world comes ready made (re: your reference to Google [3D Warehouse]).

          I think, also, however, that mesh allows new approaches to creativity. The builder can create with more complexity and control than ever to realize an idea, and the builder can focus more on accomplishing an effect than worrying over the building blocks used in constructing that effect. I suspect mesh will attract some builders who have felt the tools in SL and Opensim were not sophisticated enough for their vision. For others, mesh will revitalize the marketplace for more highly detailed models. But, as you suggest, mesh also means objects that many will not be able to see. The question of leaving users behind who choose not to use a mesh-capable viewer is the more complex social issue. It seems to me that as with most areas of technology, improving content quality will motivate an increasing number of users to overcome their resistence to the newer mesh-capable viewers.

          •' Joe Builder says:

            Being i been in opensims for some time now, I see lots of Mesh around. Does opensim always copy whats the next best thing from SL? Just curious being Mesh has been available in Opensims for some time now. Like a Monkey see Monkey do kinda thing. Its ok if you can’t build with prims or sculpts for that matter, Its not the end of the world just build what you build off world and import it in. If thats how you can only create content. We all know why SL does it, not because its new to SL but because its Low land impact. That is not the excuse in opensims thats why we are here anyways isn’t it???

          • I’m still not sure why you so strongly deprecate the activity of using mesh.

            As a creation technology it is the most detailed way to achieve full control over an object’s form. There is no copycat issue at stake here. It is a technology broadly used in all applications of graphics, including film, video, architecture, effects, games and more. Finally, (finally!), it has come to Opensim.

            I do imagine that you are commenting from the perspective that a certain authenticity will be lost because mesh capability also allows the import of content, no building required. However, given the broad range of purposes people bring to the Opensim platform, I think it makes more sense to give more options and look for authenticity in the results, as well as the means.

            If my challenge is to create a learning environment, the goal is teaching. It will be fantastic if I can find lots of pre-made content, as my purpose is to educate, not to build. On the other hand if I’m looking to create an interactive exhibit of automobile prototypes, I may want to build some realistic mesh objects that would be hard or impossible to construct accurately using only prims.

            It still seems to me that mesh has a valid place along with prims and sculpted prims in making rich immersive experiences.

          •' Joe Builder says:

            I see your Point Lawrence, you mention a exhibit of automobiles I have them presently. around 30 in my grid some are Mine some come from other creators. I do see many errors in the sculpt builds which i have replaced with prims. I suppose its a sorta a challenge for me to make it out of prims and get the same or better look out of using prims. I really do appreciate Mesh builds but thats in my SL account where there apples to oranges in there look. I guess because of the physics SL uses. Maybe a bit off subject I have a theory in Vehicles in opensims why the mesh wheels dont like scripts. I would suggest trying to create a mesh wheel with 1 linkest set at X,Y,Z, at these numbers X=0.00 Y=0.00 and Z=90.00 if a wheel is not set at this coordinates it wont work. Maybe some Mesh builders can give this theory a try being its the same numbers used for Sculpts/Prims.

    •' Chav Paderborn says:


    • If I understand your point correctly, you’re looking at building-with-prims as a certain art form which requires a certain skill set (beyond lots of talents), and this art form might become as defunct as the Dodo thanks to meshes.

      Hmm. Well, it’s like saying: “building a statue out of matchsticks and giving it as much realism as possible is a finer art form than doing it with marble and a chisel — anyone can do statues like that”.

      While certainly it’s much harder to do a statue out of matchsticks than out of marble, that doesn’t mean that sculptors using stone are, well, lesser artists, or that they can do it far quicker. They might, but it’s not a question of speed: it’s a question of medium.

      But I understand the argument of prim-building as a “lost artform”. There is some sense in that argument. I personally don’t think it’s so important, but, then again, I’m not an artist. And for me tools like Maya, 3DS, not to mention Blender (ugh!), or even SketchUp are far beyond my ability to comprehend and use — give me prims every day, it’s soooo much easier 🙂 Sure, I can’t build anything beyond sticking a few prims together, so my point is not really valid, but as far as I can understand, one thing is having the talent — which I don’t have — the other is having the tool, and comparing Blender to SL’s building tools is for me like programming a super-computer from scratch in machine assembly (something that Cray’s founder was used to do) compared to using a pocket calculator (it does sums easily, but that’s all it does).

      So I respect as much anyone who has mastered Blender and can create anything with it (while I can’t even draw a single cube after losing half a day reading tutorials), as much as anyone who can build a hyper-realistic castle (or anything else) just using prims (and not even textures). Both, for me, require an insanely sophisticated technique, and, of course, a lot of talent.

  7.' Chav Paderborn says:

    I find mesh that bit easier than sculpts, so it is a bit (okay a lot) frustrating that people prefer to stay in pre-mesh viewers unable to see newer content. “Oh, you’re invisible” is not something I really enjoy hearing. I’ve taken to trying *not* to use mesh, but that’s not always possible or preferrable. Some things are just better/easier to do in mesh.

    My latest reaction was to make a build entirely in old-skool prims with a single sculptmap, if only to see what’s possible with them old tools that everyone can see. It was a fun experiment but I really would prefer to be able to unlock the full potential of mesh in Open Sim.