I propose interface.exe be referred to as a browser


There is a lot of confusion about what hifi is. It works like the web. Domain servers/assignment clients are just serving content, like apache serves html.

I think people are inclined to think HiFi is a complete solution like Second Life, when it is not. HiFi is more like Network Solutions mixed with Mozilla, a marketplace and (soon) Blockchain. Interface.exe is just something they made because it is needed and it is all open source. For all intents and purposes it is a VR browser and nothing more, while High Fidelity is providing a range of services to support it.

Yes, it does perform authentication with hifi servers and yes will be tied in with a wallet, and yes hifi servers are hardcoded throughout it. Personally I think hard coding these things is a mistake and may hinder its growth but it is just a matter of time before somebody comes along and converts all this code to run their own network (or even converts it to run on any “hifi” network or allow selection from a range of different service providers who specialize in things like authentication, cryptocurrency, domains or what have you).

Anyway I think referring to interface as a browser could clear up a lot of confusion about what hifi is, after all that’s pretty much what it is and calling it a browser will give people a better frame of reference for how to view it.


Not sure who these people are, guessing you might include me I that general tagging. I fully understand HF is a virtual world platform whose goal is to provide a set of constructs that permit a wide range of 3D virtual world implementation tools. But it also suggests some fundamental standards are in place to facilitate wide interoperability. Creating a myriad of cul-de-sacs helps no one.

Calling Interface a browser still doesn’t change the fact that interface is a bad browser. I give interface a temporary pass from that judgment only because it is still in alpha. There are may aspects of it that must be fixed before achieving beta status. It is not that ‘people’ are confused about what Interface is, or what HF is - it is that there are architectural faux paus, incomplete and conflicting design structures that need to be fixed.

Now again, this is alpha. This is where the experimentation happens, and it is in exiting this phase that all the deep design issues need to and will be fixed and mostly settled. I also have hope most of the implementation bugs will be attended to and repaired.


What I’ve noticed when evangelizing Interface to friends and family is that people seem more confused by my excitement towards VR (in general) than any particular labels yet. :slight_smile:

But as a reference point, this section from the HiFi architecture docs does draw a limited comparison to web browser. And as another reference point, some of the non-web architectural choices seem to make more sense next to nearby ideals like identity protection.

I do like the idea of being able to introduce Interface as a kind of browser, but don’t some aspects of the web model conflict directly with popular aspirations? Like Apache has logged IP addresses for nearly forever (oops, sorry privacy!). And “Mozilla” has been empowering end-users to override content, extract assets – even copyrighted – and install ad-blockers (oops, sorry content creators!). Whatever compromises can be found on those fronts… I don’t think the web model, or Interface, has found the best answers yet.

Personally I think referring to Interface as a VR Operating System might make easier sense. And it’s technically possible to write a “VR browser” within that O.S. (for example, by using very different defaultScripts). Sort of like how you can run Windows simultaneously on OS X, maybe there’s a way to have the best of both worlds here virtually.


Well, I have a hunch when the WWW was originally in alpha, or even pre-alpha, they may have had the same debate as to what to call the program you use to visit the Web. “Gee, why are we calling it something as cumbersome and confusing as ‘browser’? We should name it something that clues the use in to the fact he’s looking at interactive text windows. Maybe name the program Reader or a Displayer or something…”

Course, as time went on, everyone accepted “browser” as the word for the program you wander around the Web using, and stopped even thinking about it. Now, nobody would think twice about how it is “a browser” when visiting Facebook or Yahoo or the like. Given time, no one will think twice about calling the program you use to interact with the Metaverse “an interface.” By the time it gets to where John and Jane Q Public are gallivanting around on the Metaverse, whatever word we wind up using will have been accepted as transparently as “a browser” is now for the WWW: they won’t even think about it, or notice the difference had we gone with a different name for it. The program they use to access the Metaverse could just as easily be “the basketofpuppies,” all they’ll be thinking about is the part of the Metaverse they’re staring at right then. :slight_smile: I say, "the interface"as a name for it is fine as is. By the time HiFi is ready for its closeup, the word for the mechanism they visit HiFi with will likely already have become accepted as the natural word for it by the end user anyway.


Just because it is VR doesn’t mean it is not a browser. Immersion is irrelevant.

Interface.exe is virtually identical to a web browser, only in 3D. I wouldn’t call it a web browser though I would call it a VR browser. It is grabbing hosted assets and presenting them to you. It even uses javascript.

The web has a nice long history and there is no point in discarding that simply because VR is supposed to be a new thing. 3D web is the next logical step from 2D web. I’m just calling a potato a potato. You can put as much cheese and bacon on it as you want but it is still a potato no matter how it is sliced. They intentionally made it to work like the web, might as well adopt the naming conventions as well so people don’t come in expecting something it is not.

It is not World of Warcraft and it is not a computer. Frankly I am a little dismayed by the terminology being used, and this isn’t the only instance of confusing terms I have seen regarding HiFi.

It is almost as if somebody on the ladder decided they were too cool to go by conventional internet terminology that has been around for decades because they want this to be “new” or “different”. Sure some things may or may not catch on but again I think it does more harm than good.


Arguably it should be called a Broadcaster .


webbrowser ? Nooo that’s complete wrong description. You get users that try to go to google, facebook, etc. web browser is absolute the wrong description for this.

With a webbrowser you visit webpages. I never tried it. But pretty sure you cannot load any webpage with interface.exe.

But the right name. well i never figured that out to. viewer is the most clear but also that am trying to avoid.

ADD: and now i did already got wromg myself because you used the word browser that i automatical converted to webbrowser. SO browser is a wrong word.



Browser, not web browser. This isn’t the web.


@Cracker_Hax – but by that logic, on the road to Web one could have argued a nice history of managing pixels or teletext was being discarded because the Web thought itself supposedly new…

I actually see a significant degree of newness here with modern VR – much much more than 2D+1D, or 3D.

And one of the core principles I think makes the metaverse plausible is evolutionary duality – which I’d hate to see sacrificed to labels at either extreme.

I propose that VR Browser is as much Interface.exe as curly fries are potatoes; Web pages are managed pixels; a Windows VM is an OS X laptop; or emulated Snowballs are world entities.

And take for example what WebEntities actually are (besides being broken right now) – the bastard offspring of Web and Entity. They possess dual-citizenship and qualities exceeding either parent’s potential. This is no small thing – there are easily hundreds of ways to conceive and code a web page – yet most visible web pages are clever ways of managing pixels on-demand. Wouldn’t it be a regression to prefer one side over the other exclusively?

Some day we will likely have to find ways of explaining VREntities too…


I always thought the HiFi Interface module was more a VR-UI, on which actual tools such as browsers, editors, etc. were to be built.


I think of interface.exe as the implementation of a standard set of SPIs (system programming interfaces). Without those standards developing using HF would be so much harder than it is today. From that standardized SPI set, virtual world makers can hang their APIs (application programming interfaces), But even at that level of abstraction (the APIs), some standards need to be in place or agreed to.

We already see the problems that have resulted from the lack thereof. This alpha period is a great time to hash them out.


Do not forget, of course, that when we were transitioning from horse-drawn personal conveyances to motorized personal conveyances, they originally used the cumbersome expression “horseless carriages” for the first motor driven conveyances in order to differentiate them from the around then called “horse drawn carriages.” A bit later, society invented the term “automobiles” to simplify the relevant conversation, and then eventually that term got supplanted largely by “car” and “truck” and the like. The truth is, we’re probably going to start out calling this interface or viewer or whatever by the less satisfying term we can come up with NOW, but what we call it at this stage of the game doesn’t matter as much. The society that comes along LATER will evolve a succession of better terms for it, exactly as happened with horseless carriage to automobile to car and truck. We’d best not get bogged down in the minutia of dreaming up “the perfect name” for it NOW, because more than likely a better name will arrive later that we did NOT think of. We’re at the “horseless carriage” stage of naming this beasty. Live with it! :smiley: :smiley:


The only confusion I think I have heard of is not interface, as that is what it is doing but the habit people have with “If I downloaded High Fidelity, why isn’t the app called high fidelity when I click on it.”


Konshu, we agree and are thinking about a clearer way to name parts for our beta release.


I kinda get the feeling that Interface is just a stop-gap, and that HiFi’s endgame is to hopefully be integrated into existing web browsers, or to spur the development of better, new Browsers/Viewers/Interfaces. It could be that in the future, building functions are delegated to ‘pro’ or niche forks whilst most people just use a simpler ‘Interface’, much like how old Netscape and Mozilla had a HTML editor.

Browser works as a term, but being from a slightly SLish background, I have a tendency to call it a ‘Viewer’. (Despite this, I call JanusVR a Browser)


My hunch is that whatever term eventually gets used for this will probably be decided over the next few years by the general society… and it might not bear any relation to the one WE come up with. :smile:


So I will start calling it a browser in every single post I make from now on. :smiley:


Hmm, no do not call it a browser. unless you only look for things in high fidelity. But viewer is just as wrong as browser. It’s just a program. :smiley: