Second Life – Apollo 11

20th July 2019 marks the 50th Anniversary of the First Landing on the Moon. The National Space Society arranged an experience in Second Life to celebrate the event… #Apollo50th #SecondLifeChallenge

https://community.secondlife.com/blogs/entry/2586-apollo50th-secondlifechallenge/
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/National%20Space%20Society/30/51/3674


Did you see that Buzz! Houston… we may have a problem!

Second Life Spaceflight Museum

See also Second Life Spaceflight Museum: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Spaceport%20Alpha/49/81/24

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Sansar – Apollo 11

20th July 2019 marks the 50th Anniversary of the First Landing on the Moon. So a good time to revisit the Apollo 11 Experiences in Sansar… Apollo Museum and Tranquility Base… #Apollo50th



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ImmersiveVR – Apollo 11

20th July 2019 marks the 50th Anniversary of the First Landing on the Moon. So a good time to revisit the Apollo 11 ImmersiveVR Experiences via the Oculus Rift… this time using the Apollo 11 HD update… #Apollo50th

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Second Life – Relay for Life 2019

A Relay for Life event in Second Life took place on 30th June 2019 in the Blake Sea sailing area – “Raft Up 2019” – with the audience able to observe the activities from a floating grandstand…
Blake Sea – Haggarty – Floating Grandstand
Blake Sea – Crows Nest – Nearby Boat Rez Zone

SLT 9am-11am: Joy Canadeo Live DJ
SLT 11am-1pm Luke Flywalker: Live DJ
SLT 12pm SLCG** Rescue demonstration
SLT 1pm-Close: Benny the boozehound Live DJ
SLT 1pm LCC Cruise to the raft up
** SLCG = Second Life Coast Guard






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Seven Dales Heritage Run 2019

DLMC-Logo-sThe De Lacy Motor Club (D.L.M.C) in Yorkshire has been running rallies, car trials and driving tests for over 50 years as noted in my previous blog post. My wife Margaret and myself joined some other family members and entered the Seven Dales Heritage Run again this year for a nice run through East and West Yorkshire…



Best turned out car and crew… Ted Meek and Morris Tate in the 1968 Austin Mini Countryman…

Half Way Halt…

Entrants List

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Vue Balloon over Bellisseria

I previously tried the Michie Marine Balloon from Balloon from Michie Yokosuka on the Second Life Marketplace over the New Linden Homes Bellisseria Continent in Second Life. Some snapshots are in this previous Blog Post. A balloon like this was used to provide tours of the Vue regions in Second Life [YouTube Video 8-Aug-2019 3m:19s]

I replaced the balloon envelope texture with one that is the same as the “Vue Balloon” based on a real life event where a balloon “glow” took place in the University of Edinburgh Old College Quad in January 2006.





Virtual University of Edinburgh (Vue) Balloon Tour and 2006 Balloon “Glow”

University of Edinburgh Ballooning Club Glow in Old College Quad, January 2006 image used with permission of David Gifford
Vue Balloon Tour Machinima in Second Life – 8-Aug-2008 [YouTube 3:19]
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Supercar in FSX in 2019

Supercar still works great in Flight Simulator FSX nearly 25 years since the first version of the add-on was created for Flight Simulator 5 using Flightshop Aircraft Factory in 1995… http://www.aiai.ed.ac.uk/~bat/GA/supercar-msfs.html







Bruce Artwick Organization, @microsoft / @dovetailgames @fsxinsider / @steam_games

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Sailboat around Bellisseria

Time to take the Bandit 50 Sailboat (from The Mesh Shop) out for a more extensive run down the West Coast of Bellisseria, the New Linden Homes Bellisseria Continent in Second Life.




Sailing with the Ruth 2.0 open source low-poly mesh avatar along for the ride…


There are also some nice free sailboats in the Second Life Marketplace from Michie Yokosuka.

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Speedboats around Bellisseria

Having tried a range of aerial vehicles and a yacht in the New Linden Homes Bellisseria Continent in Second Life, I explored some other vehicles. I found several nice speedboats in the Second Life Marketplace from Michie YokosukaMichie Marine Sport Cruiser SD35 and MM Div(e) Speed Boat models.

Michie Marine Dive Powerboat


Michie Marine Michie Sport Cruiser SD35



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Balloon over Bellisseria

Having tried a helicopter over the New Linden Homes Bellisseria Continent in Second Life, I explored some other vehicles from the same creator. I found a lovely free balloon on the Second Life Marketplace from Michie Yokosuka – a Michie Marine Balloon model – with ascent burner effects.


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Helicopter over Bellisseria

There are a number of people travelling by helicopter over the New Linden Homes Bellisseria Continent in Second Life. So I thought I would try one out. I found a lovely free one on the Second Life Marketplace from Michie Yokosuka – a mm R44 Clipper2 model – appropriately with floats for water take off and landing. It has animations for doors, rotors, etc. and a very nice down wash effect on the water surface.






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Supercar over Bellisseria

The new airstrips, boat rez zones and car rez zones have now appeared on and around Bellisseria continent, the location of the New Linden Homes in Second Life.

I am using the ones at Norse Auk and Coral Waters to try out Supercar since this model has a “land impact” of 715 prim equivalents, which is beyond the capacity of a single Linden Home plot (351 object limit).


Approach Over Ai Pad on Damiano




Underwater off the NW Coastline of Bellisseria

Airfield and Boat Rez Zone on Coral Waters


Balloon Flypast

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Skydiving at Ai Pad in Second Life

Following me setting up a base in a houseboat on the New Linden Home Continent of Bellisseria in Second Life, I have been trying out a few vehicles, and thought I would reactivate my old Skydiving setup back from when I first joined Second Life in 2006, I used a skydive setup built by “Cubey Terra” (Second Life Marketplace) to demonstrate some of the features of Second Life to colleagues and friends. See my Blog Post on this.




Skydive at Abbots Airfield in Second Life

You can go to at Abbots Airfield in Second Life to try out Skydiving. A free simple chute is available near the Skypod launch system. And “Terra Sports Chutes” can be obtained via the Second Life Marketplace.

http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Abbotts/159/119/47
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New Linden Homes 2019

Second Life - Ai Pad - Windlass Houseboat

New Linden Homes 2019 are available for Premium Members in Second Life. Details via:

Ai Pad


Ai Austin established a houseboat style home on the Bellisseria Continent at Damiano/92/20/0.

Nearby Boat Rez Zone by Lighthouse at Norse Auk/149/110/21 (Capacity 898).

Airstrip and Boat Rez Zone at Coral Waters/120/80/23 (Capacity: 3,786).




Vehicles at Ai Pad

Debonair Floatplane (39 land impact), Bandit 50 Yacht (32 land impact), Cobra G2 Speedboat (29 land impact), Rescue Dinghy (11 land impact), Supercar (Lora Chadbourne version, 222 land impact), and my detailed Supercar mesh (712 land impact)…

Yacht at Ai Pad at Sunrise Yacht at Ai Pad at Sunset

Bandit 50 Yacht at the Houseboats


Debonair 0412 Floatplane over the Houseboats



ERB-380 Rescue Dinghy

Poole Pottery

A display of some of my Poole Pottery in the Ai Pad Houseboat… “Moon” Charger from “Moon and Sun” Range and a “Delphis” Bowl…

Customisation

Each Linden Home has a controller for the owner to alter visual appearance, décor, access security, etc. On the houseboats this is in the style of a lifebuoy…

Other Blog Posts about New Linden Homes

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Black Hole

A black hole and its shadow have been captured in an image for the first time by a network of radio telescopes called the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT). The image shows a supermassive black hole in the centre of Messier 87 (M87), an elliptical galaxy some 55 million light-years from Earth. This black hole is 6.5 billion times the mass of the Sun.

https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/chandra/news/black-hole-image-makes-history

The image bears a remarkable similarity to the simulation which predicted what would be seen after image capture, combination and analysis…

Black Hole - Simulated Image Black Hole - Actual Image

A graphical depiction of the elements of a Black Hole are shown in this figure from NASA…

Black Hole Elements

The Event Horizon Telescope has also already captured data which will allow the creation of images of other black holes, including Sagittarius A* at the centre of our own galaxy, the Milky Way.

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Virtual Worlds in VR

oculus-rift-set

This blog post is a reminder that we can still view OpenSimulator and Second Life content in Virtual Reality (VR) headsets such as the Oculus Rift using the CtrlAltStudio viewer. Though this viewer is based on an older version of Firestorm and does not support some newer features incorporated in the platforms, it still performs pretty well on most content. Details of the viewer, its capabilities and usage are in an earlier blog post.

Openvue


AiLand



AiLand – Gerry Anderson


OSGrid

Second Life



2019 – What Works and What Does Not

As mentioned before CtrlAltStudio in its last release is based on December 2014 Firestorm viewer code. This means a number of things introduced to Second Life and/or OpenSim since that date are not supported, or may cause the viewer to fail. There have also been many improvements in Firestorm and other viewers since then that are not included in CtrlAltStudio Viewer. Unless you really need Oculus Rift or stereoscopic 3D support you should seriously consider using another viewer instead.

Linden Lab’s cashier update of 15th Jun 2016 (TLS 1.2 enforcement) is not supported when using the built-in web browser (e.g. trying to purchase from the Marketplace). However, user/user transactions, transactions via in-world vendors and L$ purchases via the button in the top right corner of the viewer will still work.

Avatars have had added “Bento Bones” to extend the range of visual styles and animations possible. This especially includes extra head bones, many extra bones for the hands and fingers, and body bones to allow the addition of tails and wings. Wearing attachments which use the extra bones in CtrlAltStudio causes a nasty visual glitch where the mesh is stretched to the 0,0,0 point on the region.

Animesh for animated avatar style objects in world (like NPCs) has recently been introduced into Second Life and is not likely to work at all in CtrlAltStudio.

July 2019 Update

Testing in July 2019 with CtrlAltStudio 1.2.6.43412 and Oculus Rift DK2 and CV1 on Oculus 1.38 software with Windows 10 Pro version 1903 and Dell Precision T5810/Nvidia GTX 1080… all look fine except when exiting the viewer the screen has bad colour effects and needs restarting.

This may be due to the “Color Profile” being set by the viewer, and occurs with Nvidia GPUs. A fix was introduced in June 2019 for the Linden lab Second Life Viewer and the Firestorm Viewer for this…
https://releasenotes.secondlife.com/viewer/6.2.3.527758.html.

This information may be relevant … https://www.nvidia.com/en-us/geforce/forums/discover/239606/finally-a-fix-for-the-games-changing-the-color-profiles-/.

Garry Beaumont on MeWe suggested this fix without having to reboot the computer… “the only way out of that screen without shutting your system down is to do this… Right click the windows button (I know its hard to see) then go to the second tab up (you can just make them out) now click the top tab in the window that opens. You escaped without a shutdown”.

This has the effect of doing a log out for the user, which resets the colour profile.

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3D Modelling Info

This blog post is intended to provide some information and resources links for 3D computer modelling tools and development and delivery platforms to combine models to create virtual worlds and make these available to multiple simultaneous users.

3D Modellers

There are many such modellers, some licenced and some open source. A few are:

  • Blender – an open source modeler with a variety fo ways to import and export a range of 3D model types.
  • Sketchup – Sketchup models are scenes comprised of Collada (.dae) content. But exporters can create other 3D model formats.
  • Autodesk 3D Studio Max – a commercial licensed 3D modeller.

World and Scene Development Platforms

Multi-user Delivery Platforms

Multi-aspect Virtual World Environments

Some platforms provide several of the above aspects.

  • OpenSimulator – provides a way to do modelling within the tool as well as importing Collada (.dae) mesh objects, combine them into scenes or regions and deliver these to multiple users via a viewer.
  • Second Life – provides a way to do modelling within the tool as well as importing Collada (.dae) mesh objects, combine them into scenes or regions and deliver these to multiple users via a viewer.
  • High Fidelity – A platform which allows scenes to be created using prebuilt meshes in limited formats, do simple editing of the scene and publish those scenes for others to visit.
  • Sansar – A platform which allows scenes to be created using prebuilt meshes in limited formats, do simple editing of the scene and publish those scenes for others to visit
  • Sinespace – A platform which allows scenes built in Unity to be embedded in a multi-user virtual world delivery platform, along with some basic in world content modification tools.

3D Model Exchange Formats

3D model formats are used to store 3D model data in a form that can be imported or exported from the various tools or platforms. Some are more widely supported and used than others. many are proprietary. A few are open source.

  • .obj
  • .3ds
  • .dae (open source)
  • .fbx
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Virtual Harmony – Mars Expedition

Virtual Harmony is an OpenSimulator-based educational simulation grid with contributions by Barbara Truman at the University of Central Florida, Cynthia Calongne at Colorado Technical University, Andrew Stricker at the Air University and NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

An award winning rich educational simulation involving 3D/VR elements and AI systems is available on the Huffman region…

Some details are at:
https://vharmonyarts.com/sitePages/topic/67
http://vharmonyarts.com:9000/wifi/index.html
LoginURI: http://vharmonyarts.com:9000 (Visit via Hypergrid)
Mars Expedition – Blue Skies Over Mars
hop://vharmonyarts.com:9000/Huffman/681/136/27

More details are available in a presentation at https://www.slideshare.net/lyrlobo/vwbpe-2019-mars-i-vr-game-simulation.

A presentation was given at the OpenSimulator Community Conference 2018…
https://static.sched.com/hosted_files/oscc18/cf/OSCC18 Blue Skies on Mars Stricker Calongne Truman.pdf



Visit to Virtual Harmony Huffman Mars Expedition on 14-Apr-2019

Thanks to the Virtual Harmony team (Spinoza Quinnell/Andy Stricker and Lyr Lobo/Cynthia Calongne) I was given a guided tour of the Mars Expedition facilities…

Presentations by Lyr/Lobo/Cynthia Calonge about educational immersive experiences:

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Virtual World Avatar to be Next President

Following the success of film stars, comedians and others in recent popularity driven elections… a Non-Player Character avatar in the virtual world OpenSimulator is to be nominated as the next President of the USA.

A spokesman in the UK said.. “Bring it on… lets have an avatar as Prime Minister in the UK too”.

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I-X – Intelligent Technology

This blog post is intended to provide a quick overview of our work on I-X – “Intelligent Technology”, its underlying <I-N-C-A> ontology, and especially its application to intelligent planning systems and intelligent collaborative spaces using I-Plan and I-Rooms.

Austin TateAustin Tate and the Edinburgh Planning Group

Firstly a brief introduction. I am Professor of Knowledge-Based Systems at the University of Edinburgh and Director of the University’s Artificial Intelligence Applications Institute (AIAI). More information via http://www.aiai.ed.ac.uk/~bat/.

AI planning has been a topic of active research at Edinburgh since the 1960s and I have been exploring this area since the early 1970s. The Planning and Activity Management Group within the Artificial Intelligence Applications Institute (AIAI) in the School of Informatics at the University of Edinburgh is exploring representations and reasoning mechanisms for inter-agent activity support. The agents may be people or computer systems working in a coordinated fashion. The group explores and develops generic approaches by engaging in specific applied studies. Applications include crisis action planning, command and control, space systems, manufacturing, logistics, construction, procedural assistance, help desks, emergency response, etc.

Our long term aim is the creation and use of task-centric virtual organisations involving people, government and non-governmental organisations, automated systems, grid and web services working alongside intelligent robotic, vehicle, building and environmental systems to respond to very dynamic events on scales from local to global.

More on our planning technology, research and applications projects is described at http://www.aiai.ed.ac.uk/project/plan/

I-X and I-Plan

I-X LogoI-X – http://www.aiai.ed.ac.uk/project/ix/ or http://i-x.info – is a systems integration architecture. Its design is based on the earlier O-Plan agent architecture and incorporates a hierarchical viewpoint to it’s systems design. I-X provides an issue-handling style of architecture, with reasoning and functional capabilities provided as plug-ins. Also via plug-ins it allows for sophisticated constraint management, and a wide range of communications and visualisation capabilities. I-X agents may be combined in various ways, and may interwork with other processing capabilities or architectures especially where hybrid cognitive systems are joined to algorithms and data driven sub-cognitive modules where they can all work in an “intelligible” and human level explainable manner. I-X supports applications orientated towards “synthesis” tasks where such as design, configuration and especially planning. It is especially designed to support mixed initiative work between people, robots and computer systems working in a cooperative fashion.

An introductory paper to the approach is available here…

Tate, A. (2000) Intelligible AI Planning, in Research and Development in Intelligent Systems XVII, Proceedings of ES2000, The Twentieth British Computer Society Special Group on Expert Systems International Conference on Knowledge Based Systems and Applied Artificial Intelligence, pp. 3-16, Cambridge, UK, December 2000, Springer.
[http://www.aiai.ed.ac.uk/project/ix/documents/2000/2000-sges-tate-intelligible-planning.pdf]

In a nutshell, all aspects of agent capabilities, activities, tasks, objectives, plans, etc are represented in some way as a specialisation of a set of “issues”, a set of “nodes” (think of activities in a planning context or parts of a designed object), a set of “constraints” of various kinds and a set of “annotations”. We write this as <I-N-C-A>. I-X, our systems architecture, essentially just uses its computational capabilities to handle issues, apply nodes, manage constraints and interpret annotations to inform, explain or support the use of the construct.

<I-N-C-A> Ontology – Issues, Nodes, Constraints and Annotations

Here is a quick intro style paper on the idea of treating all aspects of task specification, planning, environment modelling and lower level activity as “constraints on permissible behaviour” and our <I-N-C-A> Ontology for plans, activity, agent capabilities and all things like that (though it actually is more general and applies also to designed artifacts, scheduled things and configuration tasks).

Tate, A.(2003) <I-N-C-A>: A Shared Model for Mixed-initiative Synthesis Tasks, Proceedings of the Workshop on Mixed-Initiative Intelligent Systems (MIIS) at the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI-03), pp. 125-130, Acapulco, Mexico, August 2003.
[http://www.aiai.ed.ac.uk/project/ix/documents/2003/2003-ijcai-miis-tate-inca.pdf]

My work on hierarchical planning over the years led to a very simple abstract ontology suitable for objectives, tasking, activity specification and capability modelling which is intended to be as flexible (and additive) as required for any application. The concepts within the ontology have been a core of standards such as NIST Process Specification Language (later an ISO process specification standard), etc. We call this <I-N-C-A> – it is an ontology suited for any “synthesised” things… and allows for design, configuration as well as planning applications. which allows for a set of constraints on behaviour where the types of constraint are “issues” to be addressed, “nodes” (which can be thought of in a planning context as “include activity” constraints, “constraints” themselves (in a planning context usually time, and object co-designation/non-co-designation and sometimes spatial), and “annotations” (which we use to capture underlying gIBIS style rationale of how issues/tasks are turned into selected activities under the constraints).

An I-X system can “handle issues”, “apply nodes”, “manage constraints” and “interpret annotations”. The idea is that the components in an <I-N-C-A> inspired system share and communicate constraints up and down, and that lower levels can communicate via partially shared constraints that can be understood between the levels (this often involves time, object = and /= ) so there can be yes, no and “maybe if” information passed between the levels to help home in on a mutually acceptable artefact (design or plan) in a mixed initiative fashion. Great where humans, organisations, robots and environmental systems are all cooperating.

Applications and Use Cases

I-X, I-Plan and <I-N-C-A> have been applied in a number of areas… many reflecting our applications and research funding interests in collaborative systems, operations centres, emergency response, etc. Links to projects are at http://www.aiai.ed.ac.uk/project/plan/.

2010-05-13-Train-for-Success-1We have also explored intelligent instrumented spaces in which people and knowledge-based systems can cooperate in areas such as mixed-reality distributed team operations centres using the concept of an I-Room – a Virtual Space for Intelligent Interaction.

<I-N-C-A> has even been applied as a business modelling approach without any software involvement to collecting information and making business cases for the potential opening of large scale plant across the world for a major food manufacturer.

More Publications

The above papers (as PDF) and others that go into more technical details on the I-X/I-Plan system and how it uses <I-N-C-A> can be found in the following documents index…

A couple of publications that may give a good overview are as follows:

  • Tate, A. (2000) Intelligible AI Planning, in Research and Development in Intelligent Systems XVII, Proceedings of ES2000, The Twentieth British Computer Society Special Group on Expert Systems International Conference on Knowledge Based Systems and Applied Artificial Intelligence, pp. 3-16, Cambridge, UK, December 2000, Springer. [PDF]
  • Tate, A. (2003) : a Shared Model for Mixed-initiative Synthesis Tasks, Proceedings of the Workshop on Mixed-Initiative Intelligent Systems (MIIS) at the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI-03), pp. 125-130, Acapulco, Mexico, August 2003. [PDF]
  • Tate, A. (2014) Using Planning to Adapt to Dynamic Environments, in Suri, N. and Cabri, G. (eds.) (2014) Adaptive, Dynamic, and Resilient Systems, Chapter 13, pp. 243-257, CRC Press, Taylor & Francis. [PDF]

Our earlier O-Plan planner use of <I-N-OVA> (a forerunner of the more abstract upper level <I-N-C-A> ontology) is described in these publications from 1984 to 2003…

  • http://www.aiai.ed.ac.uk/project/oplan/documents/
  • For an overview of O-Plan and its applications see… Tate, A. and Dalton, J. (2003) O-Plan: a Common Lisp Planning Web Service, invited paper, in Proceedings of the International Lisp Conference 2003, October 12-25, 2003, New York, NY, USA, October 12-15, 2003. [ PDF]


How this might be used alongside other Systems Architectures

<I-N-C-A> is intended to act as a simple, easily understood, upper ontology or outer layer for representing all aspects of tasks, activity, objectives and agent capabilities. Alongside an ontology and models for the objects in the domain, which <I-N-C-A> deliberately does not prescribe, it can offer a framework which can easily be deepened to meet the actual requirements while providing a stable overall basis which allows for system reasoning and human understanding.

The work on <I-N-C-A> involves the investigation of the use of shared models for task directed communication between human and computer agents who are jointly exploring a range of alternative options for a product design or for joint activity.

Six concepts are used as the basis for exploring task orientated multi-agent and mixed-initiative work involving users and systems. Together these provide for a shared model of what each agent can and is authorised to do and what those agents can act upon. The concepts are:

  1. Shared Object/Product Model — a structured representation of the object being modelled or produced using a common constraint model of the object or product.
  2. Shared Planning and Activity Model — a rich plan representation for activities, objectives and plans using a common constraint model of activity.
  3. Shared Task Model — Mixed initiative model of “mutually constraining the space of behaviour” (or objects/products/plans).
  4. Shared Space of Options — explicit option management.
  5. Shared Model of Agent Processing Capabilities — handlers for issues, appliers for nodes, constraint (model) managers and (possibly) annotation interpreters.
  6. Shared Understanding of Authority — management of the authority to do work (to handle issues and apply/execute nodes/activities) and which may take into account options and levels of abstraction of the model of the object or product.

Engagement with various standards setting groups has a part of the work: PIF, NIST PSL, OMWG CPR and DARPA SPAR all converge on a single core model of activity which can be related to the more abstract <I-N-C-A>.

IBM Project Intu – “Self” – Cognitive Architectures

Sample Project Intu Conversational Agent Sample Project Intu Conversational Agent

Resources for Discussion

http://www.aiai.ed.ac.uk/~ai/resources/2019-01-16-Briefing/

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Nonprofit Commons in Second Life

On 21-Dec-2018 the Nonprofit Commons (NPC, http://nonprofitcommons.org/) in Second Life held a Grand Opening of their newly renovated Community Virtual Library Nonprofit Resource Library along with ice skating to celebrate the last NPC meeting of 2018.


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Webots

On 18-Dec-2018 Olivier Michel at http://cyberbotics.com let previous Webots users know that the platform has been made open source via GitHub…

Today, after more than 20 years of proprietary licensing, Webots has become free open source software, released under the terms of the Apache 2.0 license. You can download Webots R2019a binary packages, contribute on GitHub, read the official announcement, and watch the video presentation.

Webots Resources

Webots has been used for some years in the Robotics classes in the School of Informatics at the University of Edinburgh, and was used by AIAI for Project AIBO as described in this blog post… http://blog.inf.ed.ac.uk/atate/2014/04/05/experiments-with-webots-6-4-4/

Webots 2019a Project AIBO
Unimate Puma NASA Sojourner
Apartment and Roomba Moon Bots
Sphero BB8

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Subnautica

Nautica is an exploration game based released by Epic Games in a watery world where your spaceship has crash landed and you have escaped in an escape pod equipped with a materials and equipment fabricator, materials analyser and limited storage (Inventory) facilities.

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Dual Universe

I am a Kickstarter Funder for the emerging MMO orientated Dual Universe platform. Dual Universe Alpha 1 usage is subject to a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) so this blog post only provides useful links and publicly posted images and videos by Novaquark, the developers of Dual Universe.

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Diva Wifi for OpenSim 0.9.1.0


Update 17-Nov-2019: The Diva Distribution (D2) and Wifi related addon-on modules were updated on 17-Nov-2019 to .NET 4.6 and 0.9.1.* compatibility. See https://github.com/Diva/diva-distribution. Please use that version of WiFi now. The following blog post content is left for guidance on how to build a grid based on 0.9.1.* Dev Master source where you wish to include the WiFi addon module…

OpenSim 0.9.1.0 changes the .NET Framework in use for compilation from 4.0 to 4.6. As at 12-Dec-2018 the sources for Diva’s addon modules are still based on .NET Framework 4.0 suitable for OpenSim versions up to the current stable 0.9.0.1. Small changes are needed to the *prebuild.xml files in those sources for Diva addon modules (and hence Wifi) to work with the latest versions of OpenSim.

First check the GitHub Diva source downloads directory as updates are likely once 0.9.1.0 is available as a stable OpenSim release.

Otherwise some helpful information and resources may be found in the section Update of Diva Addons for OpenSim 0.9.1.0 onwards near the end of this blog post…

Diva Canto provides the popular “Diva Distribution (D2)” precompiled version of OpenSim which includes a number of addon modules. One of these is called “Wifi” and provides a web front-end interface to OpenSim running in “Standalone” or “Grid mode with “Robust” services.

Wifi front end to Openvue Grid Wifi front end to AiLand Grid

Wifi is documented on the OpenSim Wiki at http://opensimulator.org/wiki/Wifi through which links can be found to Diva Canto’s download and source areas on Github. Wifi serves web pages which provide services such as:

  • Account creation, optionally controlled by the administrator
  • Configurable default avatars for new accounts
  • Account updates by both users and administrator
  • Account deletion by administrator
  • Password recovery via e-mail
  • Simple user inventory management

Wifi as an OpenSim Add-in

Up to OpenSim 0.8.0, Wifi was available as an add on module via compiled .DLL libraries which could be enabled for Standalone and Grid setups. From OpenSim 0.8.1 onwards, a more flexible “add-in” library mechanism that was already in OpenSim has been improved and Wifi now is provided as an add-in under that mechanism. This does mean that the build and configuration process is different.

Diva Canto has provided a blog post which describes the new Wifi mechanism and how to build and configure it, mostly geared at Unix/Linux users.

Wifi for OpenSim Robust Grids for Windows Users

In case it is helpful to those running Robust grids under Windows, I describe here the mechanism I use to build, configure and run Wifi on our own grids.

  1. Download the OpenSim source distribution as a zip file from one of the following:

    and unzip the source code to a suitable location. Note there is a folder called “addon-modules” at the top level (same level as the “bin” directory) which only contains a README.

  2. Obtain the source of the Diva addons via

    and unzip it to a temporary area. Copy the contents of the “addon-modules” from that area into the main unzipped OpenSim directory top level addon-modules directory. Take care as there is another directory “bin/addon-modules” which is NOT the one you want to copy to.

  3. Update: 17-Nov-2019: Diva Distribution Addon Modules have now been updated for .NET Framework 4.6. So this step is unnecessary.
     
    • Prior to 17-Nov-2019, the version of Diva Wifi and related addons used frameworkVersion=”v4_0″. It was necessary to alter the prebuild.xml (plus prebuild.SQLite.xml and prebuild.MySQL.xml in 00Data) files in each directory to frameworkVersion=”v4_6″.
    • You may wish to alter some of the addon-module .cs files to remove warnings on compilation.
         ...\addon-modules\01DivaUtils\WebAppUtils.cs
                 catch // (Exception e)
         occurs twice
      
         ...\addon-modules\21Wifi\WifiMain.cs
                 catch // (InvalidOperationException e)
         occurs once
      

    Otherwise some helpful information and resources may be found in the section Update of Diva Addons for OpenSim 0.9.1.0 onwards near the end of this blog post.

  4. The following Diva addon modules are required for Wifi to work… the others are optional for uses beyond the Wifi interface and may be omitted…
    • 00Data
    • 00DivaInterfaces
    • 01DivaUtils
    • 1DivaOpenSimServices
    • 20WifiScriptEngine
    • 21Wifi
       
  5. You can now build OpenSim as usual, and the addons will also be automatically compiled. E.g., in a Command Prompt shell “cd” (change directory) to the top level of the OpenSim unzipped directory and then run “runprebuild.bat” followed by “compile.bat”. The resulting bin directory contains all you need and will have in it the addon Diva modules including Wifi.

  6. Wifi allows for extensive localisation with several provided languages and instructions on how to add further languages. A script is included in Wifi which creates a .dll file containing the resources used when the Wifi module starts up to populate the WifiPages area. This setup step uses a script that requires “ResGen.exe” to be available to run from a console and usually that means a path to the latest version of ResGen.exe needs to be on the “Path” environmental variable… e.g. on Windows 10 using .NET 4.6.1 ResGen.exe is usually located in…
    C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SDKs\Windows\v10.0A\bin\NETFX 4.6.1 Tools
    So long as ResGen.exe is accessible, then run the script at addon-modules/21Wifi/Localization/make_languages.bat or .sh.

  7. Before you run Robust.exe and OpenSim.exe, configure Wifi for your requirements by editing bin/Wifi.ini (but see the section “Disable Wifi in OpenSim.exe” below for a suggested improvement). A basis for your own bin/Wifi.ini file can be found in addon-modules/21Wifi. Since Wifi.ini sets Wifi as disabled by default, you will have to explicitly enable it and change necessary information to access your OpenSim data base, set your administrator avatar name and e-mail, etc.

  8. To allow tailoring of Wifi for your own grid, a directory “WifiPages” at the same level as the “bin” directory may be used where you can place specific *.html and any image/* files which will override the default equivalents in bin/WifiPages. The following pages can be overridden:
    • footer.html
    • header.html
    • links.html
    • splash.html
    • termsofservice.html
    • welcome.html
    • image/*

Disable Wifi in OpenSim.exe

With the default locations suggested in Robust.[HG.]ini.example and OpenSim.ini.example for the add-in configuration and registry locations, the addins are picked up by both Robust.exe and OpenSim.exe and use the same configuration for both. This means that if Wifi is enabled in Wifi.ini it runs in both Robust.exe and OpenSim.exe. This is not what is wanted for a grid and means that Wifi is served on the OpenSim default port (usually :9000) as well as the grid services port (usually :8002).

Hence, the following is the configuration used on Openvue and AiLand grids to allow for separate enabling of Wifi for Robust.exe and disabling Wifi for OpenSim.exe. Wifi.ini is MOVED from bin/Wifi.ini to config-addon-robust/Wifi.ini. These configuration settings may be useful as a basis for what others might wish to use…

-------- Robust.[HG].ini ----------------------
[Startup]
    RegistryLocation = "."
    ConfigDirectory = "./config-addon-robust"

-------- OpenSim.ini---------------------------
[Startup]
    RegistryLocation = "."
    ConfigDirectory = "./config-addon-opensim"

-------- config-addon-robust/Wifi.ini ---------
; Copied from Diva's Wifi.ini with [WifiService] Enabled = true
; and changes for your data base, admin avatar and grid environment
...

-------- config-addon-opensim/Wifi.ini --------
[WifiService]
	Enabled = false

Check your Data.MySQL.dll in Robust.[HG.]ini

In configurations for Wifi before the 0.8.1 add-in, Diva.Data.MySQL.dll was used as the “StorageProvider” both within the Wifi modules and for other Robust services. This is no longer necessary. The default StorageProvider = OpenSim.Data.MySQL.dll should be used for all normal Robust.exe services as configured in Robust.[HG.]ini as Wifi itself picks up the StorageProvider = Diva.Data.MySQL.dll separately from the settings in Wifi.ini.

Update of Diva Addons for OpenSim 0.9.1.0 onwards – using .NET Framework 4.6

Instructions to amend the version of the Diva Addon Modules as at 12-Dec-2018 to Framework 4.6 and fix a couple of compiler warnings is available, along with a zip file of a modified version, via http://openvce.net/resources/downloads/diva-wifi/


Update 17-Nov-2019: Updated version of notes and Zip file using 17-Nov-2019 Diva Addon Modules GitHub Source also made available via same directory.

Setting up the Default Avatars for Wifi

Using the provided example Wifi.ini file you have an indication that you can select one of three default appearances for newly created avatars set up via Wifi. But in a new environment you must set those avatars up first.

  1. Create the avatars with names “Female Avatar”, Male Avatar”, “Neutral Avatar”. and authorise them via the Wifi Admin is that is required.
  2. Login as each avatar in turn. They will usually appear as a cloud initially and then after a short while (depending on the version of OpenSim you are using) rezz to appear as “Ruth” wearing four basic body parts, new pants and new shirt. Note these parts come directly from the OpenSim Library and MUST NOT be worn in your final appearance for the default avatars. You can COPY these library parts into the avatar’s inventory if you wish, or create new body parts and clothing, but before you finish you should remove any items that show as “worn” that are located in the OpenSim Library as those will not rezz on avatars created based on these models.
  3. Create new body parts and clothing and edit them and/or add any other mesh, clothing, attachments or HUDs you wish to appear on the avatars.
  4. Note you can extend (or change the avatars names or labels) for the range of default appearances that are shown in Wifi and/or change the preselected default by altering Wifi.ini.
    ;; Syntax: AvatarAccount_<AvatarType> = "<FirstName> <LastName>"
    ;;         (replace spaces in <AvatarType> with underscore)
    AvatarAccount_Female="Female Avatar" 
    AvatarAccount_Male="Male Avatar" 
    AvatarAccount_Neutral="Neutral Avatar" 
    
    ;; Preselection for default avatar in new account registration 
    AvatarPreselection="Neutral"
  5. When you Create a new avatar via the Wifi web interface based on these predefined avatars the items worn will appear in the newly create avatar’s inventory under Clothes -> Default Avatar <AvatarType>.
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OpenSim VR Viewer Under Development – Resources

Resources related to a new open source OpenSim content VR Viewer under development by Melanie Thielker of Avination and others…

Open Source VR Viewer for OpenSim in Development — Low Cost Alternative for Social VR Projects, Blog Post: December 10, 2018…
https://nwn.blogs.com/nwn/2018/12/opensim-vr-unreal-viewer.html

New open source VR viewer for OpenSim may be coming soon…, Blog Post: December 10, 2018…
https://www.hypergridbusiness.com/2018/12/new-opensource-vr-viewer-for-opensim-may-be-coming-soon/

https://github.com/opensim/opensim-viewer
New viewer for OpenSim-based worlds. Originally using the Unreal game engine. Currently it uses the Xenko game engine for rendering.

To be visited in virtual reality with Melanie Thielker’s new viewer, the OpenSim regions first have to be converted to a format compatible with the Unreal/Xenko Engine. There is no support yet for getting the regions directly from OpenSim servers, or for having avatars in the scene.

Melanie Thielker’s presentation at the OpenSim Community Conference (OSCC’18)

OpenSim VR Viewer via OARConverter, Unity and SineSpace

An alternative way to view OpenSim content in VR would be to convert OpenSim Archive (OAR) files to Collada mesh via the OAR Converter Tool, import that to Unity and then publish the content into a SineSpace scene. [Sinespace Resources]

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Dreamgrid – Outworldz Dreamworld – OpenSimulator

Outworldz Dreamgrid LauncherDreamgrid is an easy to use OpenSim platform created by Fred Beckhusen, aka Ferd Frederix. It includes MySQL, Dynamic DNS name provision, OpenSim 0.9.1.0 Dev, 1, Diva’s WiFi admin interface and a wide range of add on modules. It sets up a virtual world grid with HyperGrid capability along with options to load a range of alternative content via OpenSim Archive (OAR) and Inventory Archive (IAR) files. It includes a simple update mechanism.

Addon Modules

Some Advice on Setting up Default Avatars for the Wifi Web Interface

See http://blog.inf.ed.ac.uk/atate/2018/12/12/diva-wifi/#avatars

Issues being Explored at Dreamgrid version 2.53 (10 December 2018)

There appears to be a problem when jumping between different Dreamgrid grids using hop://grid:port/region/x/y/z addresses in the address bar. Using the grid:port/region format in the Map tool appears to work. And using a hop:// in the address bar to a non-Dreamgrid (but still 0.9.1.0 Dev) grid works.

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OpenSimulator Community Conference 2018 – OSCC18

The OpenSimulator Community Conference (OSCC18) ran again this year on December 8th to 9th, 2018 and was once again organised and run by Avacon.

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High Fidelity – Futvrelands

On 17th November 2018 High Fidelity ran a Futvrelands event in honour of VR Day.





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Clamavi De Profundis – Tolkien Poems

Image from TheOneRing.net
Clamavi De Profundis is a family that loves to sing together and record inspiring and uplifting music. Their music is influenced by classical and fantasy literature as well as cinematic, traditional, religious, and classical music. In particular they have created some wonderful songs and videos based on poems from Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.

Far Over the Misty Mountains Cold (from The Hobbit) –
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P8ymgFyzbDo

Song of Durin (Complete Edition) (from The Hobbit) –
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uxfoa23skHg

The Song of Beren and Lúthien
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Smmy289iunY

Image from Clamavi De Profundis

Clamavi De Profundis have a Patreon Page where support can be given to the production of their music.

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