Friday, August 3, 2007

Comments are closed....so are their minds

It seems that once again our "friends" at Linden Lab have decided they don't need to listen to the Community of Residents, as they have closed comments on MOST Blog Entries. The only Blog Entries that are opened are those that are trivial (at best) or are mere propaganda. Such as the VOICE is Live announcement or Torley's recent Blog Entry of how the wonderful Bug Squashers have fixed the SNAPSHOT bug.

I made the comment some ago, that the Second Life Community wouldn't be fooled for long, and it appears that has come true. If you read through the Blog Comments concerning the "Voice is Live" announcement, you will have seen what I did, that only about 5 Residents were in favor for the coming of Voice, while all the others have decided Voice is a bad thing, for one reason or another. Only a few months ago, that number would have probably been reversed, so what has changed? Well, like I said, the Second Life Community has finally woke up to what has been going on.

Perhaps it was this past weekend where it took more then 48 hours to fix a problem that had severely handicapped all the Second Life Residents, or perhaps it is the recent closing of the Blog Comments, but whatever the reason, the Second Life Community seems to have finally awoke from their long slumber.

Now that the Second Life Community has begun to wake, perhaps Uncle Philip and Aunt Robin will take a hard long look at what we have all been saying, "Give us our world back, fixed!" Of course, Uncle Philip might continue to believe that these "boisterous" Residents are merely a small number, as he believed before, so I think the thing to do is give Uncle Philip and Aunt Robin an email to let them know just how many of us are tired of the constant happy-happy propaganda coming out of Linden Lab. I suggest everyone send Philip and Robin an email with the subject of "We aren't going to take it" and a body with just your Second Life name included. I'm they will understand completely what it means.

A thousand mile trek begins with just one step; will you take it?

5 comments:

Blip said...

Again I see that you have a terrible misconception about how most software companies are run. There are people who add new features and there are people who fix bugs. Two completely different groups of people and in a time like this for SL I'm sure that the bug fixing group is much bigger than the feature adding group. In fact I know it is. Since the SL client is now open source you can take the initiative to help out and fix some of the bugs which you complain about. SL development went from within the company to everyone with access to the internet. Why are you complaining?

And there are TONS of people who love and use voice, not just the 5 or so who posted to the dev blog. Go in world and check it out.

Blipster

Bob Bunderfeld said...

Well, Blipster, I'm a HUGE supporter of the Open Source idea, and normally I would be all for helping.

I have one small issue with how Linden Lab is using it though. You see, as a PAYING customer, and as Linden Lab is a FOR-PROFIT organization, the only real benefit of Open-Source to Linden Lab is having non-paid individuals doing the JOB of paid individuals. Since Linden Lab continues to make a profit off the work of the Open-Source Community, I think as an Open-Source Supporter you too would find this to be dis-tasteful.

Now, let's deal with your assumptions. First, your assumption that I don't know how a software company is run. While I haven't spent any of my employable time in a Software Company, I have spent the majority of my IT Tech life in the programming department. I have also dealt with other companies whose sole purpose was to make and sell software. So, I have this "knowledge" you think is un-obtainable to anyone that hasn't worked in a real software company. While there are TWO seperate departments within the Programming Staff, one for Enhancements and one for Bugs (although this is another assumption, that unless you work for Linden Lab, you are guessing as everyone else), that doesn't mean that people writing and developing these Enhancements should be given Carte Blanche when installing such Enhancements. Every single Enhancement will add MORE Bandwidth Congestion, more LAG and PACKETLOSS, more stress to the servers, and instead of trying to be the first gaming company to have such wonderful new toys, shouldn't Linden Lab be looking at how these Enhancements will impact the world? Sort of like an Environmental Impact Study many companies are required to do before building a physical structure.

This is where Linden Lab has failed the Second Life Community. They merely add more stress to the GRID, and hope it will stand. It's the Second Life Residents though, that have had to pay for Linden Lab oversight, and we are coming closer and closer each and every day, to seeing how those oversights are destroying the World we enjoy so much. Let's not forget that we all got a small taste this past weekend, of what to expect when Linden Lab continues to add stress to the Grid, without strengthening that same Grid; and that includes the Bandwidth as well as the servers and services.

As for the TONS of people who LOVE and USE voice, I put it to you, wouldn't it have been wiser, to spend time on an enhancement that wasn't already available for free to the Residents of Second Life? Just go to http://www.skype.com and download the free client. Then you can talk to all your Second Life friends and NOT add to the bandwidth congestion. But then again, I never claimed that Linden Lab was doing the smart or logical choices.

Cristiano Midnight said...

Bob,

Your comments could not come at a more timely point. I would like to move forward with regrouping the Project Open Letter effort - things have gotten worse in three months, yet they have found time to add voice chat to an already overtaxed grid and communication system that seemed to come dangerously close to a meltdown last weekend. This time around, the message to LL won't be so polite, patient, or low key.

Cristiano

Dave said...

Bob, Open Source Software != Free Software. They can continue to make as much money from the "Service" they provide as they want to, regardless of whether part, all, or none of the source code is in the public domain. Maybe they do get the benefit of unpaid programmers finding bugs, but hey, doesn't that sit quite nicely with the "Stable as possible, soon as possible" mantra?

If I had the time I'd have the SL client source fully set up on my home machine and be plugging away at it constantly because I'd *love* to help move the system forward. Alas, I don't have the time so I'm grateful to anyone else who does, Linden or not.

Also, aside from the few kb per second extra it takes to stream low bitrate audio to and from your net gatway to your machine, the bandwith hit of voice should be negligable as they are using non-grid servers for the task no?

I'm a voice fan, and I'd rather not (and haven't up to now as again, I'd rather not) download a third party tool to talk with people in a system that's perfectly capable of streaming my voice chat itself.

While we're on the subject of voice, when I first joined SL I was blown away by how easily *you* were able to teach/instruct/guide newbies like myself using your shoutcast broadcastumyjig. The only downside was the 2 minute delay from question to answer. Wouldn't the voice client cut out the delay and make tutorials *that* much more enjoyable/responsive/efficient?

But I ramble, simply put my friend, there are plus sides to the voice client that no-one mentions. It seems the nay-sayers have much louder voices.

Dave Talamasca

Bob Bunderfeld said...

Dave:

While I agree with MOST of what you say concerning Open Source, I still have an issue with a Company that chooses NOT to build up their own staff for squashing bugs, while they have the resources to do so.

Relying on the Open Source Community in cases where you do not have the resources to hire your own staff is what Open Source is all about. It SHOULD NOT be used to supplement your staff when you have the resources to hire your own staff, you just choose NOT to do so. It should not be used when you choose to spend time on wasted features like VOICE, when your GRID is destabilizing daily, and you choose to ignore it. Linden Lab HAS the resources to hire their own bug fixers, and also could re-assign SOME (not all) of the development staff to help with the bug fixes, at least until such time as the bugs are at a more reasonable level. Turning to the Open Source Community merely because you don't want to hire a bug fixing staff is despicable and in my opinion a WRONG way to use the Open Source Resource.

As for VOICE being a negligible hit on the bandwidth, I might agree with you IF only one or two people were using it. But, as you have implied, MANY people want and use voice, and those MANY are using up more then a negligible amount of the bandwidth; especially when that bandwidth is being re-broadcast for ALL in the vicinity to hear, whether they are VOICE users or NOT. IF LL wanted VOICE to NOT hurt the grid in anyway, they would have added a T1 or T3 line to handle JUST the voice. Instead, they continue to pile on the stress to an already over-stressed system, and the Second Life Residents are the ones who get to pay for such ridiculous mistakes.

As for my teaching ability using VOICE, I would agree, using ONE WAY communication was a great way to be able to teach, but VOICE isn't one way, and VOICE in SL still has lag. Yes, while I was using SHOUTCAST's encoder, the lag was horrendous, but when I changed over to ICECAST the lag went from two minutes to 10 seconds, something easily livable for what we were doing.