Hello everybody! In recent days, I’ve been talking with a lot of excellent builders who are beginning to use High Fidelity for the first time. Most of these folks are extremely well accomplished and even well known on Second Life, most with 8+ years under their belts. This is a very exciting moment! However, with this comes an understanding of the Second Life work flow, and High Fidelity has many things that work differently.
In the interest of helping builders across the metaverse better understand the equivalencies and differences between the two platforms, I’ve started this thread. Please feel free to contribute your thoughts. Here are some of the first questions I’ve been asked, and my attempt to answer them.
Can I build right in High Fidelity?
HiFi does not yet have in-world mesh building tools, however once you bring your models into HiFi, you can edit their properties, locations, scripts, dynamic behaviors and more. The upside of this is that you can work on your models in Blender, Maya or other tool, and then bring them into HiFi individually to assemble them.
Can I use prims in High Fidelity?
Second Life prims, or procedural primitives, are a handy and quick way to iterate and come up with models in SL and OpenSim. We do not have an implementation for prims in High Fidelity. For numerous technical and design decisions, we feel mesh is the best way to go. However, if you are used to working with prims for layout or preparation of models that you then work with in Blender or Maya, you certainly can continue to use them. What matters is that the final export comes as an FBX file. Long-time & renowned worldbuilder Yadni Monde created this nifty video showing how he designed a world first, roughly, in OpenSim/Inworlds, and then exported the prim content into Blender, which he then used to create a stunning reproduction of New Orlean’s Jackson Square in mesh.
Can I used sculpties in High Fidelity?
SL builders often use numerous assets called sculpts. These are displacement maps applied to a base piece of geometry which displace the vertices using point data stored in an image’s channel and rez a 3D model. A very clever way to store mesh data in a system’s existing image storage system, rather than adding mesh support directly to the back end. While this is an ingenious workaround and provided some very stunning effects, considering the way it works, the technology is a bit unpredictable, unorthodox to many folks outside of SL, and can produce inefficient geometry. So, High Fidelity doesn’t use sculpt maps. However, the same way you can use Blender or Maya to import and convert your prim geometry to meshes, you can certainly do the same with your sculpted prims. Be aware, though, that this unusual geometry can be inefficient, so if you do this, we recommend you clean up or retopologize sculpts if you are noticing a performance hit or render problems.
Can I use LSL to script in High Fidelity?
How can I operate a sim?
In High Fidelity, we call them domains. One of the great things about HiFi is you can run a domain on any machine you like, including your local machine on the net. If your connection has decent bandwidth, High Fidelity’s domain technology, called Sandbox runs surprisingly smoothly in the background of your computer. On Windows, you can find the Sandbox server controls located in the system tray. Even if your system is on a connection which is constantly changing location or using dynamic IP addresses (via DHCP), like taking your computer to a cafe one day and back home the next, your domain’s Sandbox server registers itself with our domain name service, so folks who have your domain name will always be able to connect to your Sandbox no matter where your machine is. This is a particularly liberating aspect of the High Fidelity architecture: you own and control your domain yourself! There are no tier or setup fees. Of course, if you wish, you could also run your Sandbox instance on the cloud using AWS, Digital Ocean or similar service, on dedicated co-located servers in a data center, or a combination. Once you install and run your Sandbox domain, you can find its free temporary place name given to it by High Fidelity’s name server, or you can pay a small fee (currently $20) to register a custom place name of your own for a year. To visit your domain, a user simply needs to enter the corresponding place name in the ‘Go To’ menu:
You can purchase a place name from the Place Names item in your account’s drop-down on the High Fidelity website, here:
Click Create a Place Name and enter the name of your domain, for example:
If you happen to have a Place Name coupon code (lucky you!) you can use it on the checkout page. Then just associate the place name with your domain and you’re good to go
More questions? Got some insights, ideas, workaround or solutions to share? Please, be a hero and post them here!