The US Congress wades into virtual worlds

The US congress is particularly interested in virtual worlds.© Rik Panganiban / Rik Riel

Last Tuesday, the US congress experienced its first  Congressional hearing session held simultaneously in real and in a virtual world. Congressmen represented by avatars, were interested in what can be done within virtual worlds, the importance of the impact on the economy and the possible risks including those on security.

The hearing was conducted by the Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet (a subcommittee of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce).

This was not a typical Capitol Hill hearing. TV monitors carried the session, but one screen showed the virtual session streaming in real time, complete with avatars providing some text-chat play by play, such as: “There’s another softball question.”

Congressmen noticed a range of actions informed by vision and clarity of purpose. One of the most needed actions from the Congress is programs that will spur the technical development of the 3D Internet.

Watch the full video here.

Read the Washington Post article here.

Picture Copyright © Rik Panganiban / Rik Riel

AVW selects 3DXplorer

After evaluating a few possible technologies, the Association of Virtual World decided to choose 3DXplorer for enabling its members explore the new 3D virtual world headquarters and facilities , actually under construction by Trimensions Metaverse Development.

In a recent communication, released by the Association of Virtual Worlds, Dave Elchoness, Executive Director said: “With its unique 3Dxplorer technology, Altadyn is positioned to deliver a virtual world experience to benefit even those who have never before explored virtual worlds. Trimensions Metaverse Development develops imaginative 3D spaces that are also functional – a necessary combination. We believe that this team will create a place and experience that our members will enjoy, regardless of whether they are industry insiders or newcomers to virtual worlds”.

Altadyn is committed to provide AVW and its members with innovative and accessible new features. To read the whole PR, press here.

Altadyn cooperates with the Association of Virtual Worlds

The Association of Virtual Worlds’ is a global industry association for the rapidly growing virtual worlds. It serves as a resource for those wishing to experiment and explore virtual worlds for work or play. The Association’s mission is to educate, network, recruit, and further the membership’s collective goals. It provides a leadership environment for companies and individuals passionate about the future of virtual worlds.

Founded by Edita Kaye and managed by Dave Elchoness, the association is well positioned to play a key role in the development of accessible, scalable, open, web-native virtual worlds, based on the know-how of its executives and members in one hand , and on technologies such as 3DXplorer in the other hand.

To accompany the association towards this goal, Altadyn’s CEO, Darius Lahoutifard, has joined the association’s advisory board, together with other industry executives from around the world. The cooperation between Altadyn and the association will result in future developments of 3DXplorer in line with this community’s needs.

Read the association’s statement: “Association of Virtual Worlds Advisory Board Goes Global”

How can I listen to music inside my 3D room?

 

You can customize your environment with your own music or use one of the sample titles proposed in the 3DXplorer library to give it a try:

Bring in an object which supports Audio. There is one in the library prepared for that purpose, under the “Electronics” category, when you “add new object”. You can recognize it as its shown in this photo.

To compose your play-list, right-click on the green screen , “Edit Audio” then “PLaylist: Edit”, then “Add track”….

You’ll see your play list on the green screen. To start playing the music press the play button, and to stop it, press the stop button.

If you decide to upload your own files, at this point you have to use only light 24kb/s mp3 files in order to leave room for graphics in your Internet bandwidth.

Developers can also have a look at the scripts to see how to build your own audio devices such as iPods and other mp3 players.

Also, in a few cases when we upgrade to a new release, you may not hear the music. In that case just delete the object and re-add it.

Let us know about your experience, and enjoy the music!

3DXplorer V3.00.12 now online

The new version, online since this week-end, brings the following new features:

  • Faster loading for scenes and objects especially those with textures.
  • Increased performance resulting in smoother animation for large scenes (hit-testing improved). This is discernable when manipulating high-poly objects.
  • A better 3DS file importer.
  • Faster applet download at startup
  • Some cosmetic improvements
  • Some bug corrections including one for the music player (in some cases, you need to re-add your stereo to be able to listen to your playlist)
  • “Lock/Unlock” object feature, to avoid moving “big” objects while moving small objects inside them.

As usual, to use the new release, you don’t need any action (as far as you have kept your project under “Last Release” status, which is the one by default on all accounts).

Enjoy it!

3DXplorer V3 beta launched !

The past 2 weeks were an exciting busy period for the Altadyn team as we opened the site to public and  launched the product to the press.

We also prepared and released a video, available on YouTube which presents the technology.

We are pretty much satisfied with the feedback so far, reading the comments from experts and articles from the journalists.

We invite you to follow the above links if you have not already done so.

The launch of V3 beta is also the end of the “private beta” period. We would like to once again thank all our private beta users for their contribution, feedback and time.

Thank you!

3DXplorer V3.00.11 now online

The new version, now online since a few days, brings the following new features:

• Faster loading for scenes and objects.
• Simplified user interface for object modifications,
• Designer can define the objects which can be manipulated withing the player by the visitors; rotating, moving, scaling.
• Double face materials are now supported when importing 3D models

• Tutorial updated

Enjoy!

Preparing & optimizing 3D models for 3DXplorer

Here’s a few technical tips to know in order to prepare and optimize your 3D models before importing them into 3DXPlorer:

Modeling of all kind of objects:

  • Use only polygonal geometry.
  • Use point light sources (omni). Color and constant attenuation are supported.
  • Use Blinn  and Lambert materials.
  • Diffuse and specular colors are supported, as well as specular strength and highlight power. 3DXplorer’s material self illumination is binary, it should be 0 or 100.
  • Double-sided materials are supported.
  • 3DXplorer matches automatically the ground (Z=0), the plane surface on which visitors will move, as being the lowest surface in the scene. As a consequence, you should place your ground in the modeler at Z=0, and have no geometry under the ground.
  • 2 different materials or objects should have 2 different “names”.

Modeling of scenes:

On top of the above tips to know for all kind of objects, please consider the following tips for scenes in particular:

  • At least one light source should be placed in the scene to be able to see it.
  • To make sure your visitors will experience high performance of real time navigation, we recommend all scenes to be optimized and stay with as lowest number of polygons as possible. In order to give you a hint, the featured web sites have each less than 100.000 polygones (including all objects inside).

A few tips to know while importing texture into 3DXplorer

When you use the “upload files” button to import 3ds files into 3DXplorer objects or scenes, these tips can be helpful:

  • The texture files should be placed in the same folder than the 3DS file itself at the time of upload. 3DXplorer will find them.
  • It’s recommended that texture files width/height don’t exceed 512 pixels. You can always reduce the size of a texture (with Photoshop, Paintshop…) without altering its visual aspect. Only the resolution will decrease as you decrease the size of a texture.
  • To keep good real time performances, it’s recommended to avoid “big” textures in a scene. All featured websites have less than 10 “big” textures.
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