RE: [croquet] Croquet vs. Secondlife regarding future development (some thoughts to share...)

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RE: [croquet] Croquet vs. Secondlife regarding future development (some thoughts to share...)

Kelly Rued-2
Hi Hussayn,

Nice to see someone else on this list is looking at using an open technology
like croquet to better pull together proprietary "portals" like SL. I am
also in SL (going on 3 years now). Additionally, I'm exploring the
Multiverse platform. I also am working on commercial MMO projects in Realm
Crafter and Conitec's A6 engine which also has multizone client/server

I'd be very interested in meeting with croquet users in SL or croquet to
talk about croquet->SL communication projects. For creating VR rooms though
I would think any 3D art program would be easier to port than SL's
proprietary prim-based structures. Like Hussayn, I'm also interested in
getting SL model data out of SL and into other formats usable in other
engines as well as importing in 3D structures, not just animations. It would
be much easier to welcome visitors from established VWs into a croquet-based
environment if they could somehow export their SL or other world avatars and
"travel" to the croquet environment. I don't know how feasible on-demand
exporting would be as a web service but that would be a great project to get
avatars and game characters breaking out of their proprietary worlds and
moving into a more open common space between them. How cool would it be to
export WoW character data, transform it to a non-proprietary non-Blizzard
owned variation in a croquet-based world and then export that same character
into an SL compatible avatar so you could take your character with you into
that world. Only by having a non-proprietary opensource intermediary
environment would something like that really be feasible. At every step of
the way any proprietary model data would need to be altered so that it
became something distinctly different so there was no copyright violation
transferring player characters between MMO/Virtual Worlds.

My progress with croquet is far less than working with the other platforms
I'm exploring so it would be great to learn from others who are interested
in cross-platform applications that bring people, assets, and services
between different virtual worlds. If this could be done via browser plug-in
rather than making people download and install yet another application, that
would be wonderful. Please keep the list posted if anyone wants to pursue
this kind of collaboration. So far I've been less involved with croquet
beause I don't know anyone personally who is using it. It looks very
promising though. :)

PS I have scripting experience but wouldn't call myself a programmer by any
means so that is also part of why I haven't been able to do much with
croquet yet. Any guidance to tutorials and step by step beginner projects in
croquet are much appreciated.


-----Original Message-----
From: [hidden email]
[mailto:[hidden email]] On Behalf Of Hussayn Dabbous
Sent: Saturday, January 27, 2007 8:11 AM
To: [hidden email]
Subject: [croquet] Croquet vs. Secondlife regarding future development (some
thoughts to share...)

Hi, all;

I am a software developer (running a small IT-company in cologne/germany)
and recently i stumbled/jumped into the exciting world of VR. So i am
absolutely newbie here... After some initial "dont know where to go" i
finally ended up doing some first investigations on Croquet, Ogoglio and on
SL. I also looked at others, but at the end it was Croquet and SL which i
took some time for. So in short i found quite a few very interesting ongoing
development in this  field.

But when it comes to "business" (whatever that means) i have the strong
feeling that i am sitting in the dark tunnel but don't see the light at the
Paul i just have read your contrib and i am willing to investigate in
finding a way out ;-)

My very first idea regarding "productive usage scenarios with VR" was to
setup a VR based "issue tracking system" where i would install two virtual
rooms one at the customers site one at my site and let do comunications
threw VR.
I discussed this idea recently on the Croquet devlist and it was judged as
feasible and doable, but i still can't get over some current limitations
(which may well exists only due to my unawareness).

So here are my thoughts/doubts and hopefully i can get some feedback or
someone would help me to start some constructive activities to get over the
(my?) limitations.

First of all any introduction of a VR based issue tracker must be totally
accepted by (my/the) customers, which means a handfull of preconditions:

- it must be easy to install (best would be to have a plugin for IE)
- it must run seemlessly over HTTP in order to get through the firewalls
   at the customers site
- it must be easy to handle, best would be to fire up the app (possibly
   and arrive in your local room.
- controlling of the in world navigation must be intuitive and easy...
- people must feel comfortable from the first minute...

 From the postings i received i understood, Croquet is on the way or even
has allready the infrastructure to achieve these goals (with some additional
I haven't seen the Browser plugin, but i have been told there is one
(somebody can tell me where? i missed to find it ...)

I currently miss a few essential things regarding comfort in Croquet, e.g.:

- i would like to see my avatar "well formed" i.e. adequate to the app.
   are simply not an option ;-)
   i know, i could fire up Poses and after some quick hacking i could get my
   SL Avatar running around in Croquet worlds. But IMHO the minimum
   would be to get some easy to use avatar constructor/editor into play so
   i can start off with some prototype characters and easy customization.
- i would like to see an easy building editor where i can construct my room
   as i need it. placing walls where i want them and putting in extra items
   as i need them, doing some land shaping... If there are some tools
   which allow me to construct my virtual world outside of Croquet and then
   it later, that would be a starting point at least. Currently i did not
   even manage to create an emtpy world with the Croquet SDK (i am afraid,
   i am really unaware of the basics...)
- I wonder whether it may be possible to not only port Avatars from SL, but
also port
   Landscapes (better say the static definitions of a whole room/world) from
SL to Croquet.
   So i could go to SL, construct my room(s) there, export them and import
them into
   Croquet. That would help me getting around quite a few reservations.
afaik the
   datastructures needed (at least) for import into SL are open and
   So export from SL might go as well... But maybe there are far better 3D
   frameworks available, which could be used to generate VR rooms ?

Of course i am currently tramping around in SL simply because it is so
amazingly easy to manage the user interaction stuff like building rooms,
moving around, etc.
Ok there IS a certain amount of pleasure and fun tramping around at their
place too ;-) But it won't help me achieving my goals as expressed above,
because SL is currently a closed framework, where even the Hardware is under
sole control of the Linden Lab.

So where will things evolve in the near/far future?
- Will SL open up and allow external servers connect to their worlds and/or
   their server software available (licensed or public)?
- Is VR in general an option to compete with todays Web at all ?
- Will Ogoglio take a role or influence development with their ideas about
   known technologies?
- Or will Croquet gain momentum and find a way into an easy to use and easy
to manage
   VR application at the end?

So where to go right now ? Keeping an Eye on Croquet is definitely an
option. Keeping an eye on SL? yes, i think so. Understanding what people
will do NOW in the public VR should allow some pragmatic predictions into
future usage scenarios...

But is keeping an eye on it all i could DO now? Where to go next? Maybe
others are on the way. I'd like to share your experiences and opinions. I
want to understand which next steps would be best to go. At the end finding
a way out of the dark would be great ;-)

Sometimes i ask myself whether one day we could achieve such a level of
compatibility, that it becomes possible to simply step threw a Croquet
portal into other VR's i.e. SL.
Ok, that sounds like SCIFI to me, but at the end there is OpenID and other
stuff already available as i learned from an interview with Ogoglio's Trevor
Smith at

I'd appreciate if someone could find some answers or hints for next moves.
Maybe we can get along the way together ;-) I even was so crazy to order an
Island in SL where i plan to build a developers camp (i told i'm sitting in
the dark, right?). So it would be at least an interesting experience to meet
some of you "in world" when it is ready and start planning how to flee from
SL back to Croquet at the end ;-)

best regards from Koeln and hope for getting some guidance/further insights,
guidelines, whatever...