“…Who me? Yes you! Couldn’t be! Then who?…” INTRODUCING AVATAR RENDERING COST

SO! We have a small little experimental feature we want you to know about…

…But first, a primer on computer graphics and video games.

As most of you know, Second Life can suffer from lag problems. Lag means a lot of things to a lot of people, but in our team (viewer rendering), this mostly boils down to graphics pipeline stalls.

Ever wonder why your XBox 360 games run so silky smooth? Well, most of it is because of how professional video game and 3D art studios are run. Though the images you see in your games are rich, vibrant, and diverse, they are actually the result of very highly regimented artwork pipelines and restrictions. Skilled game artists are given polygon counts, texture sizes, and numbers of textures which they must restrict themselves to in order to give you that experience.

One of the costliest things for a GPU (the part of your machine that does the rendering) to do is state and batch switching. Put simply, this means the more times the GPU needs to render *different* things (read: non-shared textures, non-shared geometry, etc.), the slower the experience becomes.

So, what does this have to do with YOU?!

Well, Second Life is not regimented. It’s not a formalized art studio, and you’re the ones creating the content.

People are going to build their avatars the way they want. This is great. But, it can also mean potentially disastrous performance for those nearby.

So we chatted and thought, “hey, why not let the people explore this for themselves??” “Let social and group dynamics take effect – and let the Residents see what effect avatars nearby can have on their experience.” Maybe it will work, maybe it won’t. But aren’t you curious to see just how expensive those new boots *really* are? ๐Ÿ™‚

So enough talk- how do you turn the thing on?

Well, in the latest Release Candidate, just go to Advanced->Rendering->Info Displays->Avatar Rendering Cost. [Edited to Note: If you donโ€™t see an โ€œAdvancedโ€ menu option, toggle it on or off on a PC: Ctrl+Alt+D or Ctrl+Alt+Shift+D, or on a Mac: Option+Shift+Open Apple+D. Nod to Minnetonka Loon for pointing out we should have included this info. — Katt]

Watch this video tutorial:

You’ll now see little numbers floating near everyone’s nametags. These will be either Green (Good), Yellow (Eh), or Red (Meh!)

What do these numbers mean? Well, your Avatar Rendering Cost is computed based on the relative cost of all those fantabulous features your avatar has hanging off of it. It’s done as follows…

– A base avatar begins with a score of 1

5 points added for each unique texture on the avatar (not counting the base skin). Rationale: Unique textures break batches, create CPU overhead for decoding, and consume GPU memory bandwidth. However, note that this is across the avatar- so two unique textures across 10 prims only count as two unique textures!

– All attachments are then looked at on a per-prim level. The prims are weighted as follows:

10 base points for having the prim.

1 point added if prim is invisible, shiny, or glowing (each counts). Rationale: Invisiprims/shiny/glow create a small amount of overhead by breaking batches or requiring an extra render pass.

1 point added for each planar-mapped face of the prim. Rationale: Planar mapping creates a small amount of CPU overhead that gets worse with flexible objects.

1 point added per meter, per axis, of the prim’s size. Rationale: Bigger prims are higher LOD and create more fill.

4 points added if prim has bump applied. Rationale: Bump mapping breaks batches and requires a register combiner, and creates a lot of CPU overhead when coupled with a flexible object.

4 points added for each transparent face of the prim. Rationale: Alpha creates a lot of overhead by needing to be sorted every frame AND by breaking batches.

4 points added for each animated textured face of the prim. Rationale: Animated textures break batches and require the use of a texture matrix.

8 points added if prim is flexi. Rationale: Flexible objects create a lot of CPU overhead and consume graphics bus bandwidth.

16 points added if prim is a particle emitter. Rationale: Particles create even MORE CPU overhead and consume graphics bus bandwidth.

Note that these weightings, and their resultant totals, are not a *perfect* measure of your cost- but more of a relative counter to weigh against other avatars. Point: it’s close, but it’s not scientifically perfect. For that, you’d have to delve deep into batch sizes and draw calls. These weightings and their description/rationales were written by Runitai Linden, one of our most senior graphics engineers and a man who knows rendering efficiency! ๐Ÿ™‚

And another note- ironically, the Avatar Rendering Cost display itself is CPU intensive, since it’s essentially profiling all the avatars all the time. So a good practice would be to walk around and turn it on when you want a glimpse- otherwise if you turn it on at all times, know your performance is suffering!

We have high hopes for this, and other tools like it, to help you begin moderating your world. For example, with Avatar Rendering Cost, you could…

  • Try to get all attendees at your events to be within a certain Cost limit
  • Build your content in creative ways that give the most bang for the Avatar Cost-buck ๐Ÿ™‚
  • Save your most beautiful (but most complex) attachments for photo shoots, and use more performance-friendly outfits for day-to-day work

Consider this almost like a carbon footprint approach to the performance in SL. And no, in case you’re wondering- this isn’t an attempt to offload our big responsibility to make the viewer more efficient! ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s a way to start educating Residents about how 3D art should be made- these are guidelines that hold true in every modern 3D realtime system today. We just figured you should have an easy way to see how costly certain pixels really can be!

Lastly, a few more important points:

  • This information, including the weightings, will soon make it into a wiki and/or knowledgebase article
  • Katt Linden, communications expert par-excellence, will soon be posting about follow up events around Avatar Rendering Cost- office hours, creation guides, etc.
  • You may have noticed there are many hidden features like this in the menus. In the months ahead we’d like to cover more of them- to give you a complete and robust way to explore the technology underlying your world!

Happy tallying!

This entry was posted in -Miscellaneous, Announcements & News, Bugs & Fixes, Community, Development, New Releases, Quality Assurance, Resident Experience, Tips & Tricks. Bookmark the permalink.

150 Responses to “…Who me? Yes you! Couldn’t be! Then who?…” INTRODUCING AVATAR RENDERING COST

  1. Damien says:

    I’d like to see the ARC rating placed on people’s box artwork, I know I’ll be doing that in the future.

  2. Alexandrea Fride says:

    Now thats a cool future

    good job LL wil play with that for sure ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. silke gausman says:

    hmmm…well. does this begins a way to restrict artwork in sl? perhaps some scripter will find a way to exclude those costing avatars from the sim. i fear a danger in this tool.

  4. Hal says:

    So when can we start banning people from land we own based on their expensive over-avataring decisions? ๐Ÿ™‚

    Abandon attachments all yee who enter here!

  5. Ciaran Laval says:

    A lot of jargon here but there’s hopefully going to be a market for low cost items in the very near future.

  6. Pastrami Linden,

    “You may have noticed there are many hidden features like this in the menus. In the months ahead weโ€™d like to cover more of them…”

    I think you meant “uncover”. Surely you don’t want to cover up more menu options ๐Ÿ˜›

    Thanks for the new feature!

  7. How about a shortcut key to turn this on and off, that way we don’t have to go into the menu all the time and it will be more useful to quickly turn it on/off.

    Also, this is just for Avatars correct? What about being able to see the cost of objects in world? Some sort of right click, check render cost so that builders can look at their creations and see what the impact will be.

  8. Xavier Felwitch says:

    Sorry but i can only see this causing problems… this is great if you choose to play a human av, not so great if you play an av that requires prim body/arms/head/legs etc.

  9. Stilgar Weatherwax says:

    So…suddenly people really will have some tangible proof that my Godzilla avie is the one causing the sim to grind to a halt eh?

    Geeze…so much for privacy.

  10. TheBlack Box says:

    who got the highest score ? with a couple of extra attachments (mainly guns) i got up to 4733 pretty easyly ๐Ÿ™‚

    noobs have around 50

    avarage seems to be around 500

    Cool feature. Thanks !

  11. Ooo, shiny. ๐Ÿ™‚ Must have a mess around. I know I’ll try it out on Saturday when I’m at some events. ๐Ÿ˜€

    @3: this is done viewer side, scripts are done sim side.

    @6: Covering the topic means to write about it. ๐Ÿ™‚

  12. Soap Clawtooth says:

    @5 There already IS a market for low cost stuff. Its not JUST down to your AV (though it is a major part) it’s also down to the JUNK people put into their sim. Now, I’ve known about this for a while, my avatar which is a GIANT spider, uses 46 prims in total and 3 particle emitters, that’s less than your average head of hair on a human AV and less particle emitters required for ALL THAT BING! >:/ – I also own a house. The house proper is 46 prims and fills 1024Msq of land, then, i furnished it with LOW PRIM FURNITURE – and NO that don’t mean its rubbish quality. SO, in total, my ENTIRE HOUSE from building to bed is just shy of 200 prims and 4 particle emitters (for fires, spa mist ect) and i get NEXT TO NO LAG.
    ALSO – those who are on ATI 2400XT cards and Nvidia equivalents, a good way of getting rid of some lag is to set your graphics preferences to ULTRA – turn down the draw to 128 (thereabouts) and your particle count 4000-5000 and this this will REDUCE lag by shifting the burden from your already loaded CPU to your GPU (what pastrami was on about) – Might sound silly but it DOES work (some guy was complaining about packet loss on his land, my suggestion cured it) – but most people are conservative with their graphics settings based on RAM and CPU usage, forget about your CPU and make your GPU DO ALL THE WORK! ๐Ÿ˜€

  13. Pragma Planer says:

    Men’s hair seems to be one of the worst offenders

  14. Drwyndwn says:

    @7 — Yes. I’ll second that. Many of these issues apply to builds off the avatar as well.

  15. Garn Conover says:

    I’m 7k and ive seen two 13k’s and a 16k hahaha-p- one problem.. it doesn’t stay active.. and it messes up all hovertext around it? (unless its been fixed in RC5

  16. Kuroyanagi Habsburg says:

    I discovered this a while ago while poking though the debug menus. I lurve it. 2579 — I need to detach some of these B@R accessories. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

    Can we PLEASE have some more options for visually muting people without muting the text/voice? I really enjoy turning *some* people into ugly grey blobs in addition to never having to read/hear the inane drivel that comes out of their keyboards/mics. (BTW: I don’t recall anyone covering visual muting in the blog before.)

    But……. I still want to talk to the friend who might wear the occasional giant robot/wyrmling/stay-puff marshamallow avatar that sends my poor lap-top frame rate into the gutter.

  17. Maklin Deckard says:

    Oh great…rather than work on the EVERY WEEKEND and a couple tims a WEEK lag from the asset server (you remember that, Pastrami…unable to rez, warnings about ingame transactions?), and the lag from high connectivity (aka, too many freebie accounts on at once), they pick a TINY cause of lag for those with inferior video cards, then set up a situation that just SCREAMS of a player against player witch hunt situation (all this re-occuring weekend lag is from those darned over textured, overprimmed avatars…BAN THEM from the parcel / sim!!) to cover the real causes of the problems.

    Whole thing translates to ‘wear a ruthlike avatar, or expect to get banned from most venues for ‘lagging’ the place up’ I can see fun times ahead for various prim-based avatars as the smoke and mirrors gets ramped up to divert people from blaming the lindens for much of the lag.

    Way to go, Pastrami Linden! You folks REALLY know how to build community.

  18. Ann Otoole says:

    so why don’t you just tell us to go naked ruth. will that make your efforts to make people think your software problems with your code are our fault? nice try. won’t work.

    hey heres an idea? sell sl to Microsoft. they have real c++ engineers.

  19. Woo, only 925 for my dinosaur avatar. I was expecting it to be madly high but it isn’t too bad I guess. ๐Ÿ˜›

  20. Smokey Newman says:

    Ok well we can allready see when sripts are colliding and I had this with two avatars who worked on my Island and I had pretty much got it down to there collors. Its fine knowing but how do you tell someone. It took quite a while for these peole to eventual take notice. Had the same thing with bling and lag even the avs know but dont do anything about it.

    Thats the down side .

    The good side is that its sounds like a good move and I will definately be trying it out.

  21. Crap Mariner says:

    Interesting feature. Is this the reason why muted avatars now appear as 1-ARC grey silhouettes… to mute high-cost avatars appearance-wise as well as text-wise?

  22. Ann Otoole says:

    can we have a borked sl rating that shows use database locks and other problems so we will all see how well YOU are doing? yes i think we need an asset and transaction meter in the client. as it is it would be RED – UNSATISFACTORY almost 24*&7. there ya go. thats what we want. we can’t rely on LL warning us before we lose money and inventory so we want meters to show us realtime the true condition of the system.

  23. Maklin Deckard says:

    “so why donโ€™t you just tell us to go naked ruth. will that make your efforts to make people think your software problems with your code are our fault? nice try. wonโ€™t work.

    hey heres an idea? sell sl to Microsoft. they have real c++ engineers.” – Ann O’Toole

    Yeah, its a bogus ‘Blame that guy over there, not me’ on the part of LL. EVERY game company does it when they get in a pinch. I recall back on Ultima Online….they blamed your ISP the second you reported lag…even if everyone on the server (with ISP’s around the world) reported lag.

    At least Origin / EA had the claass to blame a third party, rather than trying to turn player against player, when denying responsibility for their own faults. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

  24. cube republic says:

    This is silly

  25. Felix Oxide says:

    Hey Pastrami, would it be possible to get this type of tool for builds as well? It would go a long way to help making objects more efficient as well.

  26. Karensa Karas says:

    @ 44 Hal Says:

    Abandon attachments all yee who enter here!

    Ironic Zen. ;-p

  27. Ann Otoole says:

    don’t stop here. give us parcel access limits on this cost metric be a massive community polarizing feature. call people “tards” (mentally handicapped due to various biological problems beyond their control) on the public blog. i can’t believe this blog entry. LL so needs a business management team to take over everything and let programmers go write code and meet deadlines.

  28. Sling Trebuchet says:

    “Weโ€™re talkinโ€™ bling tards, people ๐Ÿ™‚ ”

    Well, yes and no.

    I tried the ARC in a previous RC.
    The results were very interesting.
    I walked around with a self-righteous 300-ish score. (and no! I’m not a naked Ruth!)
    I came across avatars that I felt from just looking at them would be about the same score or even less, but who in reality had scores of 2000-3000.

    I don’t do bling, but I have a feeling that prejudice against “blingtards” is based more on good taste than it is on lag-loading.

    I think that people will be taken very much aback by the ARC results that they will see.

  29. There are many causes of lag, this addresses one of them. Yes asset server lag is a problem. No, the graphics dev people are not involved with it. This is not LL “denying responsibility”, this is LL providing a tool to check how costly to render our creations are. LL need to fix things, and some content creators also need to fix things, and now they will know they need to fix things.

    There is, no doubt, huge disparity in the ARC of products with similar end results. With this people get extra information for their purchasing decisions. This doesn’t even restrict the types of avatars you can wear. Tinies have remarkably low ARCs, certainly in comparison to what you get with a few particle emitters and flexy prims, and that’s with prims covering every part of the avatar mesh.

  30. Sling Trebuchet says:

    Sorry. Second post to rephrase that!

    I donโ€™t do bling, but I have a feeling that prejudice against โ€œblingtardsโ€ *could be justified* more on good taste than it is on lag-loading.

    And now I’ve *really* annoyed all the blingtards, but hey …… ๐Ÿ˜‰

  31. Zena Juran says:

    A creative, successful, customer oriented company makes their products work for their customers… not the other way around.

  32. Geneko Nemeth says:

    Finally! Some explaination for this feature. I bought an avatar which showed it only has a cost of around 250 (!) while everyone around me has a cost about 2000(!!) and I thought that the avatar rendering cost was broken!

    Now I get to march around and tell everyone their avatar is making a lot of lag. ^_^

  33. @31: Yes, I hope so. There are many companies working within SL that most likely do need to improve their products to work for their customers. You are entirely right.

    There is nothing magical that LL can do to make badly designed objects render as well and as fast as well designed objects. Content creators do have a responsibility to make products that render efficiently.

  34. Felix Oxide says:

    So when do we get an Object Rendering Cost tool? It could work by drag selecting objects or linksets and show a numerical value, couldn’t it?

  35. I was so proud of my 180 links necklace i just finished an hour before this post! ๐Ÿ™‚

  36. eponymous trenchmouth says:

    Whatever happened to Occlusion Culling? “things which you can’t see won’t be rendered”.

  37. d.spitz says:

    Great idea.
    I hope ppl will take a look on it while designing.
    Its a good to see that LL will take a look on the carbon footprint of sl. Maybe some nice more ideas come along the way ( https://jira.secondlife.com/browse/MISC-704 ).

    But for sure i still love my 150 prime high detailed gucciยฎ shoes ๐Ÿ˜‰


  38. Solomon Devoix says:

    Well, low-prim furniture/objects is already a selling point… why not low ARC avatars being a selling point? Of course, small-load textures would I think ALSO be a good selling point, but that’s just me…

  39. Sling Trebuchet says:

    “So when do we get an Object Rendering Cost tool? It could work by drag selecting objects or linksets and show a numerical value, couldnโ€™t it?”

    Wear the object as an attachment.
    Check your ARC. ๐Ÿ™‚

    I’ve worn a house
    —- on purpose I might add!!!!

  40. Luticia Rau says:

    *Giggles* So essentially you are telling us to run around bare_ _ _, with no bling, and we’ll be low prim, with a heck of a lot less lag!! Well, I ‘m sure many will appreciated that!! ROFL!

    Thank you for your information, it was greatly helpful!! ๐Ÿฑ purrrr

  41. Ack, now I have to fish back my old 2004 look. It’s the only one that might be acceptable on the majority of places I intend to visit.

    Good-bye, good looks ๐Ÿ˜›

    Ah well. I hope that this new measure will at least make the Linden design team how important it is to give us certain improvements (I hesitate to call them “features” or they’ll be banned from the development queue for 2008). For instance, my 70-prim and 500-ARC hair might easily become a 23-ARC flexisculptie hair once that feature is released.

  42. Suzan says:

    I have about 1000.

    Primhair take a lot of prims alone… then primshoes, jewellery… wow…

    But – who wants to be without hair! ๐Ÿ˜‰

    I saw one avatar with “1”.. haha.. that is great…

  43. Straif Ash says:

    Prims are not created equal. If the attachments are a bunch of cubes, the number of polygons the GPU has to deal with. An equal number of torii will break down to many more polygons than the cube. Put a few hundred torii on your head and even people with fast video cards are going to notice. Not notice how beautiful you are…notice that whenever you are around their frame rates drop.

    Now, could the viewer be more efficient? Undoubtedly. However, even top-of-the-line video cards in fast computers have their limits. The content creators in SL (read: everyone) are responsible for the number and size of textures, as well as the number of polygons the video card has to render. Even if the client was perfect in every way performance would still be a real issue because too many people either are ignorant of how their creations affect lag, or they just don’t care. LL is arguably responsible for some of the problem, but the residents (and I include myself in that) are responsible for the majority.

  44. @31 We residents are given an amazing amount of freedom here, and we are the creators of almost all the problems we struggle with. It would be easier for LL to curtail our abilities but they don’t. For the most part they try to figure out ways to make things function despite what we do.

  45. Jessicka Graves says:

    Yet again, it’s LL trying to shrug the blame off for having a very non-prioritized game and structure to updates. You guys provide us with the tools to build, people build, YOU should be working more to compensate and upgrade servers and such, rather then just shrugging the blame off on everyone else. Not like you really listen to us anyways, but we seem more of a liability then customers. Plus, what are we going to do with the information? It’s not helping us, we have our avatars the way we like it, and I doubt anyone is just going to change, because OH NO my avatar is a litte laggier then most.

  46. Chica Indigo says:

    OMG Lindens WE ARE NOT DUMB!!! Agree with posts 17 and 18…and PLEASE Lindens, stop trying to distract us from the real cause of the problems in SL…YOU…not the avatars, we are the ones paying your salaries!

    What is your intent? Make the already angry ppl that are losing money in their businesses and angry clients having problems for fails transactions to get agry to each other instead of…YOU? The real cause of SL UNSTABLE enviroment?

    Again WE ARE NOT DUMB…we do appreciate the opportunity of having this game, but we DO NOT appreciate when ppl treat us like we are dumb.

  47. Brandi Lane says:

    Overall, I think this is great and the ARC scores I’m seeing are kind of astonishing. When I read about this, I happened to be wearing a ridiculously primmy outfit.. something that i would normally think of as insanelty primmy. My ARC score clocked in at a whoipping 2500 and I thought I was bad.. Until I looked around and saw people topping 10k. And, I must admit, it’s utterly amazing to me that people can be running 10K arc scores and still look basically like a newbie. Personally, I think this is great. It allows me to make smart decisions based on facts. Am I going to a public seminar? If so, let’s get a green score. Hanging out on my property? Then who cares, shoot the moon.

  48. Dytska Vieria says:

    I would like to see the same thing for scripts – you know – World->Region/Estate->Debug Get Top Colliders and Get Top Scripts for anyone to use in mainland sims.

  49. Jessica Hultcrantz says:

    First they learned us how to make stuff in the world, now they tell us not to use it.
    Sounds like a rather stupid business plan to me ๐Ÿ˜€

    However don’t blame me for lag *giggles* I’m naked already (vote for SVC-1459 in the jira if you don’t like naked avies in PG rated sims after crashes btw…) *blushes*

    and oh… my old P4 with an ancient MX4 graphics card works just fine on 1.19.0 branch but is tremendously slow on 1.19.1 no matter how the settings are lowered to insanity.

    I’d like to see a object cost meter though for rezzed objects and definitively for scripted ones!

    That’s my โ‚ฌ0.02+VAT worth of thoughs ๐Ÿ˜›

  50. Creem says:

    I’ve already played with this tool a bit, and it’s great for educating people about how things like invisible attachments are a terrible idea.

    Hopefully in the future, avatar impostors can be tied to cost (say, make any avatar with a cost of >1000 an impostor automatically).

  51. Ann Otoole says:

    oh i get it! nobody wanted windlight. pastrami came with windlight right? so the awful performance hit of windlight is now being cast upon the residents. hey delete windlight and all the windlight team. things will instantly return to reasonable performance levels.

  52. Desmond Shang says:


    Daring move, guys! Heh, even I wouldn’t have the guts to do that!


    If you are gonna show rendering cost, why not go all the way and let us see avatar script load too?

    We kinda already see it by comparative loading before/after avatars port in, may as well just make it obvious? Most people have no idea or way to know how poorly scripted and resource-intensive some items are.

    Just a crazy thought to pass on to whomever,


  53. Copper Surface says:

    A very simple tool, yet powerful in its potential ramifications, LL. Much thanks to you and praise for the idea.

    I see there’s already the usual finger-pointing when the matter of responsibility for problems is involved.

    But really, it’s just a tool. Noone’s forcing people to stop passing the buck, but at least now we can all know how big the buck really is.

  54. Minnetonka Loon says:

    So where is the darn Advanced menu? Used to be there, but I’m not seeing it now (just downloaded latest RC). And this post doesn’t remind us how to turn ’em on and I’ve searched the wiki and couldn’t find that bit of data.

    Unless there’s a glitch in the latest RC for the Mac that made ’em disappear or something . . .

    (Wasn’t there some way to turn the extra menus on and off? I searched the wiki and couldn’t find it now though so maybe I’m misremembering.)

  55. How about fixing the TRANSACTION PROBLEMS!!!!!!!!!!!!

    More gay $hit LL gives us!!!!!! Fix what’s broken before adding more JUNK!!!!

  56. Oryx Tempel says:

    Excellent playtoy, Lindens! I will definitely be messing with this even though I’m sure I’m one of the bigger offenders here (OMG that hair, gotta have that hair, it’s alpha AND flexi AND has 2 billion prims!)

  57. Darien Caldwell says:

    “We have high hopes for this, and other tools like it, to help you begin moderating your world.”

    Interesting choice of words. Discriminating would be more accurate. Just wait until LL gets the first few ARs over ‘too high a score’. ๐Ÿ™‚

  58. Gabriele Graves says:

    Great idea but it would be good if the good, eh, or Meh rating was dispensed with as it is highly subjective – stick with just the facts of the figures please. Let the people inworld decide what level is good or bad.

  59. Chosen Few says:

    Great idea, Pastrami! You forgot one thing though. 50,000 points for each facelight!

  60. Katerina Kirax says:

    Geez quitcher whining people – like Osprey said – Second Life is here to give us freedom and they take everything we give them and continue to work to try to improve our experience. Not to shift blame, not to ignore problems, to try to improve. Every thing I’ve seen since I started 6 months ago has been an improvement or a detour on the way to improvement. If I crash – I log in again – sometimes multiple times. Sometimes it peeves me off – but I know that coming on here and complaining about it isn’t going to do me one bit of good. You’ve heard the ole adage about attracting more bees with honey than vinegar? Well quit with the vinegar folks.

    This is a cool feature, it’s nice that they took time out to tell us about it – no go play with it and quit trying to make this blog a forum for bitching about different problems – that, I might add, I’m sure someone somewhere, is trying to fix right now even if they aren’t giving us daily updates on it.

    Dinner’s ready – jumping down from soapbox now.

  61. Pleiades Spark says:

    I find it a little disturbing that Pastrami Linden is making comparisons to console video games because *SL is not a game*! Not in any conventional sense. People come here for precisely that reason. If I wanted the restrictions in environment and personal creativity that a video game has, well, I would be doing that right now, wouldn’t I? :>

    (But being a curious person … if anyone who is using this feature sees me tell me my numbers, please. I’m running Nicholaz so I won’t be using it any time soon. ;> )

  62. Spontaneous Radio says:

    Woot Im only 411, so im good for SL

  63. Thank you for shedding some light on this feature. I had noticed it when the RC came out and mentioned it in the RC blog hoping it would get more play. While simulators have their share of problems, a large majority of lag is client side, caused by avatars who will attach anything and everything possible, most of the time unknowingly lagging everyone else out simply because they can.

    This is a nice feature because i can see how potentially laggy my creations are (client side) by simply attaching them to a ruth’ed avatar. I make highly detailed attachment planes and they are floating around 1300 R. Cost, (yellow i believe). This will let myself and others fine tune our products so that they don’t negatively affect other’s SL experience. Unscrupulous people..well, that’s a different story.

    We need avatar rendering metric available as an estate tool.

    What we REALLY need is an avatar script lag metric, as an estate tool.

    Right now the client can view objects, but not avatars. Please Pastrami Linden, you’re our only hope!

    Anyone who doesnt like this feature probably makes 255 prim attachment boots that use 100’s of shinied tapered torii as spikes. *cough* *cough*

    Pastrami: Does the render cost take into account texture occlusion when it is used in applicable areas? I’ve noticed the value changes as I zoom in and out, so it seems like it is.

  64. Each and every resident has a different opinion on which textures, attachments, etc have more value to their SL experience. Essentially every bit of content in SL causes lag, and some are willing to live with their lag “portion” on a gorgeous hairstyle, an intricately designed set of boots, a lavish home, or a beautifully engineered car.
    Who is to say that’s not their right?
    From this point EVERYBODY will assume it’s their right to police others.

  65. Sascha says:

    WEll if you would rewrite the flexi part and would do some other things then this wouldn’t be needed. Why is there such experimental feature now? It means that it will be intorduced in future releases. And then discriminating starts. You can’t enter places if your cost is too high and so on. If this is a way to reduce lag then I , as paying user , should really thing of stopping my business here since my render costs are too high as I was told in one Windlight meeting, because I like to look not like a noob. Maybe we should go back to twodimensional AVs. Just plain and flat and easy to render.

  66. Mercy Cazalet says:

    8403 for me, but i look amazing xD

  67. Hern Worsley says:

    So you want the residents to act with responsability yet LL themselves take NO responsability on many important issues to those same people hmmm

    I can see the merits of this but i cant see people taking it up.

    I hope in the future LL will be in a better position to secure our assets in world and back us up then im sure youll find people acting with more due care in return.

  68. The Todd says:

    “bling tard”? Come on now…

  69. Martin Magpie says:

    Yeah right tell barbie she can’t wear her 400 prim boots and see how far you get.

    The majority of people in SL don’t really care what is for the greater good, they care how good they look.

    Sorry the truth hurts.

  70. @64: Re: policing others

    This is a blessing for sim owners because we do need the ability to police users to a certain extent. If you own a sim and you are selling an experience, it is not fair that a single avatar ruin it by wearing 5000 prims, causing slowdown everyone.

    Of course, not everyone will like “please detach XXXX” but with an actual number, it becomes more justifiable. It’s hard to justify lagging everyone in a sim if there is an actual number everyone can see and it is quite a bit above the average. I’ve seen quite a few 15K render cost avatars, as well as avatars that take up 80,000ips out of 96,000 instructions per second that a sim can handle. It is necessary, and will most likely only be enforced and used by land owners who have every right to police their islands.

  71. Mercy Cazalet says:

    Martins right, I was at first a little shocked at my 8403 score, but then I was pretty proud and wouldnt change a thing. LOL *loves it

  72. Maffi Lu says:

    sweet! a Lag-Creation How-to :DDDDD

    thanks :333

  73. Evangeline Biedermann says:

    there goes freedom of choice..next we’ll have policing units and someone clever will develop a program that either bans ‘high cost’ avatars or strips them off attachments..i’m all for common sense but this spells doom for a lot of content creators imho..why should we buy expensive stuff when we’re likely facing to be bullied into not wearing it? ..seems we’re entering Nanni world..the nicest thing about Second Life used to be the opportunities to get away from s*** like that in the real world ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

  74. Pointside Sunbelter says:

    QUOTE: “how professional video game and 3D art studios are run”

    When you started charging money didn’t this make LL a “Professional Video Game Company” also ??!?!?!?!?!?

    So if you’re not doing it the way other professional video game companies do already, then that would explain a lot!!!!!!!

    A BLING-TARD METER!!! That’s cool

  75. Darkness Anubis says:

    I would personally like to see a metric displayed for script time/ips for all those huds and attachments we all love so much. I cna tell you right now by watching sim stats I can tell when someone with a mystitool or AL lands.

  76. Jessica Hultcrantz says:

    Changed from 5597 to 5569 while doing… NOTHING! Now that says the accuracy is … uhm… not stable?!?!?!?

    Anyway Everyone has told me i look good and I have no intention with stopping that, red numbers or not ๐Ÿ˜›

    (As long as the old MX4 graphics low end low cost GPU can make it, why bother anyway?)

  77. Prankster Loon says:

    Just ban the bling tards!! LOL

  78. Sascha says:

    @70 Mifune. So you like to tell people how they should look like? Poor SL. Where is the slogan Your world , your imagination gone to?

    And Pastrami, “bling tards” is not the appropiate description for all your new residents, since they like it a lot, I would see this as an insult. Well this shows once more how you care about your residents. And yes a professional graphics studio and game company can let it run smooth, you shouldn’t shoot yourself in the foot with this statement. Maybe as Katt how to do a blog post. Or move it to grid stats where nobody like me can reply a different opinion any longer.

  79. oddballotoole says:

    I as a resident of the wondefull world of second life, have to keep the lag to a minimum??

    Isn’t that your job?
    Or is it something LL isn’t capable of doing it on their own?

    So I should turn back into the newbie shape and skin i use to be?
    You got to be kidding……right?

    How about giving us a stable, working version of SL without daily ‘server hiccups’, ‘inworld issues’, ‘ (delayed) rolling restards’, ‘support pages down’, ‘windlight’, ‘dazzle’, ‘regions offline’, etc, etc.
    It seems that with every step you make forward, you take 14 steps back. Way to go, LL;-)

  80. To Ann Otoole(#18) and many others…

    It is the duty of a responsible software company to only aquire assets with real long term value to the world information community at large. We have been closely monitoring the public exposure status and “resident satisfaction factor” within in this virtual world for some time now along with a few rather limited company meetings with myself plus the integration issues dept with the fellows at LindenLab workshop. It is most unlikely that MS will aquire all or indeed any significant part of this particluar online venture though we look foward to assisting with future developments and experiencing some more of this “craaaaazy” situation.

    erm….cough..er er..scalability…er..cough…infrastructure management…..cough..er..splutter…C# teams to parade…..er..ahem…..cough…..seen the client list for the new CEO?…cough…splutter….makes my company look like oxfam..adios….hasta pronto…

  81. Racal Hanner says:

    About time we see a a footprint that coinsides with the rest of the world ..

    C’mon bring on more energy savings ..

    Save our planet.!

  82. sophia Yates says:

    I can not download the new viewer Version this has happened before. I click and it tries to launch your site to download but it closes right off. Ive tried 4 times just now and it would load. im going to try again of course. But I thought Id let you know and wondered if anyone else was having the same issue. Im not sure how many times I have had to update now in the past few weeks. But it is getting really old. Were an experimnet I know now. But we r paying to play. Im i know that and my bank account shows it. not sure what im going to do. Ive been weening myself from SL for thepast two months because I just feel most times it is fruitless. More frustration that its worth.

    Not complaining here. But this is what is in the mind of a player of this game. Ive stuck it out since Jan 16th 200t. I knows have been around along time. How the heck did you do it? My um derier gets a bit tired sitting and I try to move about the cabin every now and then. But I think my hiking rl days r coming back. RL here Im waking up from the nightmare. SL my end of the experiment is almost up. Thank you for the wonderful time. Really I did love it and had allot of fun and met allot of people but Im finding an unhealthy way to live. Sitting behind a computer and I think its time to re-connect to my rl. I never gave up my rl lol but spent way to much time here and learned a lot about human behavior. I’ll be in but I dont know how much more of the frustration I can take here. I wont even bother to mention the things that frustrate me here. We all know. good luck.
    Thank you

  83. sophia Yates says:

    correction …would not load……hmm thats a feature i wish u had here to ..edit..where is it? UHHHH Mind freeze

  84. Ceera Murakami says:

    Hummm. I figured that this was going to be a nasty black mark against most furries and other non-human avatars. But not necessarily so.

    Well, my avatars ranged from a whopping 1 on my “Low lag Human form”, which doesn’t have any attached prims at all, to one furry avatar that has a complex HUD, and which weighed in at nearly 4000! Most of my furries were not so bad, however – between 600 and 1200. I had at least one Human form that was over 2000, with a lot of detailed clothing textures and some bling on the shoes.

    Of course, this does sort of sound like a lot of misdirection. “Hey, SL runs great if you wear a Ruthed avatar and hang out in an empty class 5 sim!”. But at the same time it will be useful for cutting back on the unnecessarily complex looks. (Thousand twisted torus hair, anyone?)

  85. Neural says:

    “We’ve been trying to fix the asset server and lag problems for over a year now! I KNOW! LET’S BLAME THE USERS!”

  86. @78:

    Im not saying people should be told how to look, or what to wear, but users should exhibit some personal responsibility with how much stuff they attach. Is it reasonable at any time for an avatar to be wearing 5000 prims? Me thinks not.

    Because Second Life is an open environment, people can attach whatever they want. This also means many people will be very excessive, to the point of affecting everyone else’s experience. Would you like it if your next door neighbor blasts his radio all night long, simply because he can?

    I guess I’d consider myself a smug Prius driver, and a lot of SL users want to have goliath SUV avatars.

    On a private island that I pay for, I have every right to police someone if they are lagging down everyone in the sim. Anywhere else outside of my sim, they can do what they want, ya follow?

  87. sophia Yates says:

    Well thats a great post. Ive been here since Jan 16th 2007…um I know many have been here along time. Do you have a flat ass. Sorry just wondering. I cant take it anymore.lol why oh why did even sign up for this game. OHHH….ok i’ll go back and read the rest of the messy not I worte. sorry about that..Im going to turn on the TV. If it were day Id be in the garden…but its night time and well I need my entertainment. Or maybe sit in a real comfortable chair and read a book.

  88. U M says:

    Oh wow its blame the user again…………….Well expect this from time to time.It doesnt matter because this occures every so offen.

    No I don`t own a Xbox,360 or Wii. Those that have been around knows how to work the GUI to meet our needs. Otherwise well nice try

  89. Sumiko Yokosuka says:

    This is one of those “so why didn’t you tell me that to begin with?” moments. If you had given us this stuff months ago it may have muted some of the criticism you guys have been getting about in world performance.

    This may be the most informative blog entry since I joined SL nearly six months ago. Thanks!

    I know there is a lot involved in keeping SL running, but seeing all that goes into making SL what it is graphically here makes me admire programmers even more.

  90. Felix Oxide says:

    I do not agree on the decision to pit the community against one another using highschool peer pressure to get others to conform. Don’t get me wrong, this tool is a great asset, however you should have implemented a way to block these expensive avatars from the individual clients. For example any avatar with a red score could automatically be rendered as an avatar imposter if you so choose.

  91. Crimson Numanox says:

    I don’t see an Advanced menu! help :0

  92. @90:

    That’s a good idea, but it is all relative to the client’s graphics processor.

    Perhaps in a future Release Candidate, the graphics adapter and CPU information it pulls (Help, About Secondlife) from the computer can be used to make proprietary graph statistics that show up in the Statistics window (CTRL+SHIFT+1). Someone with 3 Nvidia 9600GT graphics cards in SLI can handle over 90000 Rendering Cost (if they can show cumulative score of the immediately viewable environment, this would also be a nice metric) whereas someone with a 5 year old ATI can’t even handle 9000 rendering cost, and then scale the graph to their gpu and cpu info.

  93. Good grief. LL is simply providing you with information: this is how much load avatars and what they’re wearing put on the SL clients within sight of them.

    People can write arbitrarily inefficient programs, like sorting a list of items by repeatedly shuffling them and checking whether the shuffle put them in order. (For those of you who know your computational complexity theory, that’s O(n!), insanely inefficient.) Similarly, clothing and hair makers can do things inefficiently as well.

    What the kvetchers should be doing is asking clothing and hair makers to provide information on how much wearing their products increases the Avatar Rendering Cost; then you can make an informed decision and make tradeoffs appropriate to the situation, and they’ll be motivated to get the effects they want as efficiently as possible.

  94. Phil Priestman says:

    More damage control from the Lindenites to hide their continued incompetence, once again blame the users and their machines instead of hiring people that know what they are doing and boot out the ones that don’t.

  95. It will be interesting to watch what will happen. Will residents pay any attention or will ranting like: “it’s up to LL to make grid better performing”. Or will they care about other’s resident’s outfits? Will we moderate our own selves? Will some creators become more popular (and costly?) because their creations are easier to render? Good, let’s see!

  96. Thanks for all the great feedback, guys!

    Time will tell how people will use this feature (if at all). If people find it useful, we may expand on the metric and adjust the values, and hook it up to parcels (parcel rendering cost).

  97. Felix Oxide says:


    So does this mean people with different classes of GPUs will get different scores for the same avatar based on their individual hardware?

  98. I have been playing with this for a while.
    Essentially, everyone above is correct.
    SL is a big enough world that every good and bad thing listed is possible.

    I turned it on and clocked ARC @ 1200.
    I took off my shoes, and suddenly was down to 600.
    They are just SHOES! A small part of my overall look, but half of my cost?
    Good bye shoes! You get saved only for special occasions.

    Next up, my ARC 400 hair. It was so, so hard to change hair.
    But, again, I can have an “everyday running around” look.
    No one dresses like they are in a glamour shoot every day of their life.
    It was crazy shopping for new hair: there was no way to tell.
    So, I ended up over spending! As I tried on each hair, it was amazing to watch the changes in look and cost. Simple looking hair had hidden costs, and complex hair in some cases turned out to be rather cost-lite.

    So, this metric helped me cut my ARC from 1200 to 140, and maintain most of my look.

    It’s called education. I can now make EDUCATED choices. I can choose through my inventory and have a relative IDEA of how much each item costs to wear. For movie making, where framerate is essential, this feature is a blessing!

    @Pastrami, why is it everyone knows EXACTLY what you mean by bling tard, but everyone still wants to bash you for saying what the rest of the world is thinking? Sorry the “politically correct easily bruised herd” is apparently still in effect. The world needs more frank honesty, and less useless garbage like “you didn’t insult me in the nicest possible way!”
    Suggestion for taking ARC further: a new dialog that ranks your av components and attachments by ARC cost, high to low, or whatever. And yes, I completely want a land/building render cost too! The idea of imposters for ARC > x is awesome. I would take it a step further and let YOU, the resident CHOOSE what to substitute. Then I could put a picture of Pastrami with a cartoon talk bubble saying “Bling Tard” with an arror pointing where the av is. Thanks SO MUCH for explaining the costing model too. Please post any changes made to to it as well.

    @Katt see what is in store? no matter what you do, or what you say, someone is going to get irrelevant and start bashing everything in sight that ever made them mad. AIIEEE

    @People against discrimination: No one made you put all the junk on. But, as a land owner, I sure wish I could put up a bouncer that said “you hurt my eyes, be gone!” based on ARC.

    @People ticked about asset server: where do you think all that junk you wear gets loaded from. Duh. Want better asset server performance? How about stuff it full of better assets! I can hear it now “but we love out 4096×4096 texture for 0.01×0.01×0.01 prims! When everyone is putting hundreds or thousands of prims into miniscule things (like EARRINGS) again, the asset cluster has to barf all that data out … to every av in range …

    @Whiners: bottom line, yes, sometimes you need to be told how to dress. Grow up and get over it. Just because its change, you don’t need to fear it. Like Capt. Kirk says, you have to learn how and why things work. If you don’t like it, shut up, buy your own sim, and run it as you see fit. Betcha once a few red avs show up and everyone grinds to a halt, you might clue in about what this whole ARC business was about. Let’s check back this time next year and see what SL runs like, shall we, and what sort of tune you’re whistling then?

  99. Aminom Marvin says:

    Great feature. Any method of encouraging more efficient content design in SL through social means is greatly appreciated.

  100. Katt Linden says:

    I’m glad to hear from so many of you who think this will be a useful tool.

    I personally hope it will benefit content creators and event planners, among many others — to be able to make informed decisions.

    The decisions are of course still yours to make about what you will create or wear – but with more information, you know more about the impact of your choice.

    Me? I was at over 2700 when I met up with Pastrami today, and Pastrami was at 150!

    [Edited to add: Several of you asked about Occlusion Culling, which is indeed working, automatically. For more information follow the link to the Knowledge Base on Occlusion Culling.]

  101. Martin Magpie says:

    @96 do it ๐Ÿ™‚ I wanna stripe attachments from my visitors. hehe (insert your own one liner here)

  102. hypatia says:

    ok… y’all arent taking account of raw tris. there is NO WAY a 35 prim sculptie hair with some alphas and flexis and two color textures total is significantly heavier than a 70 prim cut torus updo. NO WAY MAN ๐Ÿ˜›

  103. Dekka Raymaker says:

    I just want to thank all those avatars out there that are sacrificing their prim allotment for the greater good of those who want to look cool.

    prim allotment trading anyone, the more newbie friends you can get the higher the arc count for yourself ๐Ÿ™‚

  104. Landon Rozenberg says:

    I am a slow learner obviously but I have only been here a month but what in the hell is wrong with so many of you forum/blog posters? How do you tell if I include you in that category? Go back and read your comment, if it is just flaming, not constructive, or completely inappropriate and/or irrelevant why even bother posting a comment?

    I just really don’t get it. If you have a problem why not try to help solve the issue and if some of you are as sick of SL as you say and act why do you torture yourself by continuing to come back?

  105. Indeterminate Schism says:

    Nice! For the technologically-evolved amongst us it will be interesting and should be useful.

    Unfortunately I see too many people walking around spamming AO error messages so I don’t think most people will take any notice.

  106. Jahar Aabye says:

    I’d like to thank Desmond and Mifune for being voices of reason amid all the moaning and complaining. “Your world, Your imagination” does not mean “No responsibility for your actions.” SecondLife is for ADULTS, and ADULTS recognize that they must temper their actions if they adversely affect those around them.

    I agree that I’d love to see an IPS meter as well. While IPS is not a perfect measure of script related lag (some instructions are more laggy than others), in general it is the best way of comparing the lagginess of two scripted objects/

    Some of us spend countless extra hours ensuring that our scripted objects are as efficient as possible and cause very little impact on the sim, and thus cause very little lag for other users. Unfortunately, I know many scripters who do not. With scripts, we can at least test them and check the approximate increase in sim IPS that they cause when run, but until now there wasn’t a method for getting raw numbers for viewer-rendering lag.

    Hopefully this will encourage more content-designers to build with efficiency in mind, but I know that there will likely be many designers who simply don’t care, and many people who will continue to buy from those designers because they feel that their personal appearance is more important than the experience of those around them.

  107. Kenny Devoix says:

    This sure goes a long ways in explaining why some people have less lag and a better experiance in world then others with the same spec computer that always yell about how bad the lag is. Laughs its cause they are walking around in their very own lag pocket created by themselves.

  108. Paol Oh says:

    Lol, some funny thing.. I have a couple of neko ears… 800 points in total.. anoter set of ears (cyberpunk, metal ears) just 80 points.
    And i have seen a nice girl with a sci-fi outfit (latex suit with helmet, gloves, backpac and some tools) with a score over 16000 LOL!
    This is a new toy, I can already see contests for the nicest outfit with the lower score ๐Ÿ™‚

  109. sKr0d Binder says:

    Hey, Thanks, Pastrami. Good for us who want to be good citizens of the community. And I would say, being someone who plays a lot of 3d games, that LL has done a great job inventing a muti-server 3d environment that supports 50,000 concurrent users!!!

    @18 — I’m pretty sure SL is programmed in Java, not C++, btw. And have you noticed any slowdown or performance problems on your Microsoft apps? Yeah, thought so… And they onlt have to deal with local rendering.

  110. Cotytto Bonetto says:

    I’m with #47 Brandi and others who think this is an outstanding tool to help us make smart decisions. I have long suspected that one of the biggest laggers was hair. Now I am able to confirm this. My current outfit without my favorite flex hair 136. With my favorite flex hair 3268. Switching to another fairly nice hair dropped me back to a safer 408. I actually think I might be able to fix that laggy hair without ruining the things I like most about it.

    This is a good one Lindens! thanks for a great tool.

  111. hypatia says:

    this is a good idea in principle, but not all prims are equal to each other. Cut tori are the worst prims and the ones most used for hair. They were why sculpties were thought of in the first place – to reduce their usage. When I put on the cut tori hair my sim tells me how heavy it is by dipping when I put it on. The dips for sculpted hair are smaller because they use less prims. I have a hard time believing a flexi cut cylinder is heavier than a cut torus… cut tori are terrible, just put on the wireframe view and look folks ๐Ÿ˜› all those triangles can’t be easy on the video card.

  112. Paulo Dielli says:

    WTF??? I am at 1736. When I detach hair, shoes, shiny buckle I am left with a bald head, only jeans and shirt and I’m still at about 800. HUD detaching doesn’t seem to have any effect.

    What is this? Trying to make sl users feel guilty? Comon guys, I’m crashing all the time last few weeks. Please concentrate on THAT!

  113. Ananda Sandgrain says:

    Hi, thanks for adding some explanation of this feature. I noticed a couple of things weren’t mentioned, however. Can you explain whether this accounts for LOD changes in its measurements? Several people have noticed that the number changes dramatically depending on the distance from the avatar.

    Also, I see no mention of how prim types (i.e. cubes vs. twisted torii) or sculptie prims and their textures relate to these numbers.

  114. Absolutely brilliant! Here’s hoping that this feature will soon extend to every single in-world object. Can you imagine the improvement in graphics performance if ‘low ARC’ become the new content buzz-word?

  115. @113:

    Seconded. This would be good information to know, since hollow torii and sculpted objects are a bit more complex than say… a solid cube.

    What’s heavier? A hollow torus with a texture applied to all faces, or a sculpted prim with a texture applied to its one face?

    Inquiring minds would like to know.

  116. JayR Cela says:

    this is insane and, difficult, if you would have not introduced all the bling, flexi, sculpty, shiny, ect…….. in the first place we would not be even having this discussion. I will admit the problem is complex. But now you have reverted us back to the point of my avatar being kicked out of certain venues because I choose to dress nicely.

    Bad Idea

    once again you put the blame on anyone but your own selves

    JayR Cela

  117. Darien Caldwell says:

    AT least there can now be a new contest at clubs, “Person with the highest Rendering Cost” ๐Ÿ˜›

  118. Rooke Ayres says:

    Woof! With flexi heavy hair, shoes, and jewelry that I made, my alt avatar is over 3800. Ouch! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

  119. Felix Oxide says:

    I still would like to know what grade of system these numbers are based on. A low end system? Or are the results dependent on the individual’s system? Will a low end computer return the same results as a high end machine?

  120. Wolfie Waves says:

    @119 Good idea, I’ll go try it now on my old FX5200 laptop

  121. Darien Caldwell says:

    i think the colors are set much too low. 1780 is Red? That’s barely nothing. Red shouldn’t start until about 5000. It’s skewed much too low.

  122. Ric Mollor says:

    The concept of “Avatar Rendering Cost” has been exploited by griefers for quite a while now. I’ve seen groups of AVs that could only be designed to cause as much client side lag as possible standing motionless at several locations.

    At one time documentation for SL indicated a specific amount of prims that were allocated in each sim for avatars. Seeing how it’s possible to get close to 7500 prims on an AV it’s very possible that this has been exploited as a denial of service attack of sorts.

    Perhaps to drive people away from shopping at ‘laggy’ locations?

  123. Nivaya Barbosa says:

    HUDs don’t have any impact on the numbers, as other people don’t have to render them on their screens, only you. And from what I gather having played with this for a week or so since it was mentioned in a group I’m in, although I may be wrong, the LOD changes depending on the zoom you’re at due to having to render more complexities in textures at closer zooms…I think…

    As for this whole ‘freedom of avatar’ whatever talk, as someone already said, it’s more about having the information about your impact on your surroundings, to do with as you see fit, rather than as a measure to stop you wearing prims. My scaore was massively high and I couldn’t figure out why until I realised I had an old type of AO on, which had a whole ton of invisible tinyprims, I took that off, and instantly felt much better about myself. Anyone who has been in an extreme high-lag situation will know how invaluable this tool is for keeping a check on YOURSELF, not others.

  124. Gordon Wendt says:

    @116 Stop whining, you can dress nicely without having a high cost and you can be ugly with a very high cost and it is not everyone else’s fault that you dress nicely so they shouldn’t have to put up with you dragging down the performance of their event for you’re bling and high polygon attachments, hopefully they’ll add an lsl and client side element to this so that A) using lsl you can automatically warn/kick/ban anyone with a defined score and B) on the client side anyone over a defined score can be replaced with an avatar imposter.

    @117 Nah, people would just cheat by attaching hundreds of linked chains of cubes to themselves or make objects made up of the maximum link count of objects with the maximum achievable score in a single prim.

  125. JayR Cela says:

    Ok I have an idea, every one out there just go plop down 2 or 3000 $$$$ for a brand new computer with all the finest specs in the world. And then we can enjoy SL
    or better yet, how about a ultra high end graphics workstation.

    Look here LL, you need to iron out lots of problems, you’ all created this mess, not us!!! FIX IT Please

    JayR Cela

  126. So if I’ve got a green ‘1’ over my head, does that mean I win? ๐Ÿ™‚

    Primlessly yours, Atashi.

  127. Medhue Simoni says:

    Now this is a good blog posting. Alot of people already new this and many more people need to hear it. When i started sl there were already clubs that said no bling. So all those thinking your 2ndlife is going to change drastically. Chill!!! The creative artists that think its going to ruin their business, dont worry. Quality products are still in demand, u just need to think with the other side of the brain a bit more. In the end, unless you’re having problems or always in sims with tons of people, u dont have to worry about it, but it will only help u and every1 else around. This is simply something that every1 should know and adjust accordingly.

  128. Argos Hawks says:

    Without a way to see the script load of an avatar you are really only getting half the story. In many sims, the scripts are a bigger contributer to the lag than the textures and prims.

    We also need this tool for viewing rendering cost for objects and whole scenes. It could be placed on the front page of the Edit screen for an object or buried in the More options on the Pie menu. For a specific scene, you could have a small popup window that showed the total number for everything that was being viewed. Since that seems computationally expensive, maybe the window could have an update button so it wasn’t trying to constantly calculate a changing view.

  129. JayR Cela says:

    No one seems to understand that the SL back end runs on thousands of X86 based servers, in a Linux cluster configuration. The monetary investment already incurred is huge. The complexity to maintain, manage and balance said system is staggering. Then throw into the mix multi co-locations for various services required.

    Why and the heck you’all just don’t turn this whole thing over to Sun Micro Systems, IBM, or HP and get the whole thing onto some mainframes is beyond me. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

    JayR Cela

  130. Kitty says:

    llvoavatar.cpp – line 9697

    “- 10 base points for having the prim.”

    should be

    “- 10 base point for having the attachment”

    Prim count isn’t taken into account anywhere, nor is prim type.

    The fact that texture size isn’t taken into account either seems rather questionable as well. SL already suffers from larger-than-necessary textures, assigning the same “cost” to a 32×32 as a 1024×1024 really doesn’t make any sense to me.

  131. Vincent Nacon says:

    “- 16 points added if prim is a particle emitter. Rationale: Particles create even MORE CPU overhead and consume graphics bus bandwidth.”

    Don’t you meant to score for EACH PARTICLE SPRITE instead of just a “flagged” prim?

    tsk tsk tsk… fools.

  132. Caelum says:


    Seems Naked is Good

    Waaaa, whoooo

  133. les says:

    I’ve been asking for something like this for a LONG time.


    Good start! Of course there is much that can be refined. I’m really happy to see this happen. I look forward to this development and hope for the power to actualy do something with the results as a land owner.

    Pure rock!

  134. U M says:

    @ 128……………
    BUT H4 was suppose to help in the lag area. Making scripts more efective and less bulky. But look are we really getting any real results? Sims might not crash, but they sure so slow down resulting in a mindless circle of low FPS.

    “scripts are a bigger contributer to the lag than the textures and prims.”

    well again H4 was suppose to have fixed this issue along with leading to higher population with in a sim. But only half od the promises have been filled.

  135. Fenrir Reitveld says:

    Wow people, calm down.

    This is a good tool for getting a baseline of rendering cost. I concur that this should be extended to non-avatars. In fact, I agree with Desmond — I’d like to see a little floater over every seperate prim set and avatar in SL, that is a pie chart containing various stats about render cost and script time.

  136. Gordon Wendt says:

    @134 I think you meant mono, havok 4 was supposed to help physics load mono was the one that helped (ostensibly) script lag.

  137. Minnetonka Loon says:

    If you don’t see an “Advanced” menu option, you need to turn on the “Client and Server Menus”– this blog post should probably note this somewhere.

    To turn the Advanced menu on (or off, presumably):
    Ctrl+Alt+D or Ctrl+Alt+Shift+D

    Or on a Mac:
    Option+Shift+Open Apple+D

  138. Tiny Mind says:

    Great. One step closer at turning SL into a giant, glorified Text-Chat room.

    Tiny Hindsight

  139. Cinthya Vavoom says:

    This Avatar cost rendering is total BS. I guess LL wants us to look like ruthed n00bs.

    It give you a ban cost even if you have nothing but prim hair on..


    We don’t need this usles crap.. STOP GIVING IS NEW FEATURES AND START FIXING STUFF THAT MATTERS!!!!!!!!!!!!

  140. Cinthya Vavoom says:



    This means no prim hair no flexie dresses andn o prim anything What a crock of B/S

  141. Garn Conover says:


    Jira on a large llSetText Bug w/ ARC enabled

  142. U M says:

    Hey there Garn ๐Ÿ™‚ See you still having problems like the rest of us ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

    U sagi Musashi

  143. Cinthya Vavoom says:

    THis IS LL’s Way of trying to take the blame of lagg off thier cheap servers and put it on people trying to make everyone blame eachother for LL’s cheap equptment.

    This is Total BS as I stated it shows you red unless your totaly stripe all prims off hair and all..

    I don’t for one minute bleieve this its a total load of B/s..

    Just a nother way for LL to try to put the blame of poor performance on someone else.

  144. U M says:

    136 you could be right…you mean receate a easy flowing physics…

  145. Cotytto Bonetto says:

    ok…I edited the hair that was giving me a score of 3268. It was short, mostly non-flex toruses. It had a bunch of tapered cubes in the back with flex and alpha texture that I never really felt added much to the style. I removed all the flexi, alpha, cubes and wearing the hair now I have a score of 351. I didn’t take out any of the toruses.

    so I shaved 2917 off my score just removing mostly non-essential cubes. I think this tool is going to do a lot for SL.

  146. sirhc deSantis says:

    erm late to the fray but – 436. do I still get to play? and that includes ear tail and boots

  147. Kenny Devoix says:

    Seems a lot of people dont like facing the fact that they are responsable for a lot of their own lag problems. No one needs to be a naked noob but where is the sense in wearing enough to lag out a entire sim and then complaing about lag and other problems caused by it. Face it the more you wear ,the more it drains your pc to run the avie and the more it affects others around you.

  148. Sean Heying says:

    “Katt Linden, communications expert par-excellence”

    You forgot a word… It should have been Katt Linden, MIS-communications expert par-excellence.

    Bring back a unified blog.

  149. Cinthya Vavoom says:

    @100 Kata your full of B/S

  150. hypatia says:

    textures are the biggest contributers to lag, bar none. Sculpties use two textures – one for the sculpt map and one for the texture. Cut and twisted tori I have been told directly by lindens are worse than one sculptie in rendering cost.

    so I’d like to see the metric take proper account of raw triangles rendering cost, because we know all prims arent created equal.

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