It is time to announce the beta testing of “the project you thought would never ever get finished” – one that has been far more complex than we expected. Of course, I’m talking about the long-awaited upgrade of the Second Life physics engine to Havok2… which is now Havok4! The Havok physics engine provides the core algorithms for collisions and rigid body dynamics – anything that pushes, collides or tumbles in-world.
WHAT WILL HAVOK4 DO FOR SECOND LIFE?
This project is all about improving sim stability and reliability, reducing lag in the physics engine, and fixing some bugs that could not be fixed under Havok1. In other words, there are no new features in the Havok4 project, despite the fact that there has been significant work done “under the hood”. Once Havok4 is stable with beta testing completed we will be able to start adding new features, but the current goal is to get all the current features working with this new version of Havok.
The Havok4 public preview is now open, and you can help us finish testing by downloading the beta installers, logging into the beta, testing the objects in your inventory, and reporting any problems you encounter.
What Should Change With Havok4?
- Reduced simulator crashes
- Less lag in the physics engine
- More reliable prim linkage
- Stacked dynamic objects react when supporting objects are removed
- Improved collision management – uniform spheres collide as spheres, rather than as faceted shapes
- Penetrating dynamic objects will be automatically pushed apart by Havok4’s collision solver
- Vertical simulation extent has been increased to 1024 meters
- Some slight dynamic changes – avatar movements have changed slightly
What Should Not Change With Havok4?
- Dynamic objects are still limited to 31 primitives
- Region crossings can still lag and “rubber band”
- Most objects still have a 0.1 meter “collision tolerance” boundary, so they may still collide while appearing to be not quite touching
- Everything else 😉
This is an early beta, so we are opening this preview with some known bugs that are already being addressed, including:
- There is a known resource leak in the simulator that can cause it to crash
- Avatar does not always sit in the “right spot”
- LSL collision() events are broken
- LSL VolumeDetect feature is broken
HOW TO GET THE HAVOK4 PUBLIC BETA TEST VIEWER
You can download the HAVOK4 BETA CLIENT HERE (Note: This beta is on the BETA GRID and is completely disconnected from the main grid, so your main grid assets will not be affected by any experiments with the Havok beta)
Please see the Havok4 Wiki for more information, try everything you can think of, to be sure that your content works correctly with Havok4, and please remember to send us feedback using Second Life Issue Tracker at https://jira.secondlife.com/. The Havok4 Wiki has information including:
- Configuration of the beta grid for testing
- Our release plan for testing and release of Havok v4 physics to the main grid
- Technical information about the Havok4 update
READ THE HAVOK4 PUBLIC BETA WIKI PAGES
Please see the Havok4 Public Beta wiki to better understand the Second Life Havok4 update.
At the Brampton Linden Stage (Brampton 106/166/25)
This Saturday September 29, 2007 08:00 AM PDT
Tuesdays 21:00 PDT (ongoing)
Thursdays (starting October 4, 2007) 08:00 PDT
THANKS FOR YOUR HELP IN MAKING SECOND LIFE EVEN BETTER!
We are looking forward to your participation and feedback!
Andrew Linden, Lead Developer
Sidewinder Linden, Program Manager