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Because I’ve got the urge to get these off my chest, and they’re a bloody nuisance to me on a no-less-than-daily basis.

1. Viewer 3.2 calls itself Viewer 2. Linden Lab calls it all sorts of things.

Some Labbers justify this by calling it Second Life Viewer 2 version 3.2 (which is nonsense since it would be at most version 2.2 of viewer 2). Some other Labbers justify this by calling it Second Life Viewer 2 version 2.2 (which makes much more sense, but isn’t really a friendly brand.

Also, if you’re not using Windows, it’s more likely to call itself Viewer 3 or 3.2 anyway.

Please, let’s just get our branding straight. Call it Viewer 3, or Viewer 98 or Viewer XP or Viewer Bob or whatever. Let’s get all the installation and shortcuts and icons and whatnot to agree on a basic brand identity.

2. Failed teleports leading to disconnects.

Teleports fail, it’s true. There’s a lot of stuff happens when you zap from one sim to another. Some of that happens in the Lab’s server farms. Some of it happens at your PC, and some of it happens in computers and routers and switches in places neither you nor Linden Lab has ever heard of and have no control or influence over.

But, it used to be that a failed teleport meant that I stayed logged in and I could try again.

In the later iterations of Viewer 2 and the early iterations of Viewer 3, I get booted off pretty much every single time a teleport fails.

Then I have to restart the viewer. Big hairy waste of time. [To be clear, that’s not an increase in teleport failures, or of teleport-related crashes, but an increase in teleport failures leading to disconnects]

3. Video card/driver support

<sarcasm>I love having to shut off a bunch of basic Second Life graphics settings so that I can log in or teleport</sarcasm>

Linden Lab, run out and buy a few PCs. It won’t hurt. Buy one of each major chipset of graphics card. That won’t hurt either.

Now hire a (gender-neutral) dude with a screwdriver, and have them swap hardware around as necessary and try each new viewer with each new graphics driver update. Have them submit bug reports when these things don’t work right. If the problem is with the driver or chipset contact the manufacturer – you pull more weight than any of us do.

Make this the dude’s job. If there’s time left over, they can pitch in on something else, but let’s make sure that common configurations actually work, without requiring users to downgrade drivers or perform other arcane tasks.

4. Click to move, mouse to steer. Pull out hair.

I don’t usually use click-to-move in any virtual environment or MMOG, but that doesn’t mean that I think it is a bad idea. Usually I use the forward/back movement keys and mouse-steering (holding the left or right mouse-button – depending on the environment – down to steer the avatar, and using the forward/back keys for movement).

Here’s the thing, though. When you have click-to-move enabled (which it is, by default), mouse-steering is reversed from what Second Life (when click-to-move is not enabled), and other environments and MMOGs use. This gives you an experience that is alien to pretty much everything you’ve likely ever used if you’ve used mouse-steering at all.

That doesn’t make sense. You might not use mouse-steering at all, but if you ever have, then using in Second Life when click-to-move is enabled is exactly the opposite of intuitive.

That’s my major list of gripes with Viewer 3 right now. What are yours?

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