Sorry, it’s been a while since the last update. I don’t think I’m a natural blogger, partly because I’m so darn busy all the time, and partly because I don’t really think the world has any particular interest in the humdrum miscellany which clutters my everyday existence. I read some blogs and feel like I’m reading a letters column in a women’s magazine, and I really don’t want to contribute to that.
I’ve been fighting all week to get animations correctly exported from XSI; unfortunately I thought I was further along than I was last week, since although my simple tests were exporting great, ‘real world’ models by actual artists were coming out like they’d been through a car crusher. There were a couple of things that threw me off. Firstly there was the fact that it’s common practice (unknown to me), to build independent bone chains and hook them together by attaching one bone chain to the ‘end effector’ of another.
It’s been an eventful week, and it’s not even over yet! Firstly, our new ogre3d.org server, the second in a month no less, is up and running nicely. We had to move again because of the massive bandwidth we were consuming, so virtual dedicated (user-mode linux) hosting just wasn’t enough. We’re now on a fully dedicated box so we have a lot more processing power at our disposal, and 1000GB/mo bandwidth.
I don’t normally ‘name and shame’ people on this blog, but this has me rather pissed off. You might remember that an article I wrote has been published in Software 2.0, at least in the French and German versions so far as I can tell. About 8 weeks ago I was asked by one of their staff to provide some personal data so I could get paid for it - sounded fair to me.
I’ve finally had time to get back to the XSI exporter over the last few days, and it’s shaping up nicely. I refactored it all today since now I’ve learned a lot about how XSI ‘thinks’ I could see much better ways to structure the code so I could add the features I wanted. The current version now exports meshes fully, dealing with multiple object / tree selections, automatically index-organises the vertex data for efficiency (ie grouping vertex data by triangle usage), merges XSI mesh objects into single SubMesh instances where the material is the same (you can turn this off if you want your sub-objects to remain separate for whatever reason, but it allows you to keep modelling using separate objects but have a more efficient runtime mesh if you use it), and I also now deal with polygon clusters, which is XSI’s way of allowing you to change materials in the middle of a mesh.
You heard right. We crossed the million ‘hits’ mark in less than 3 days. Yowsers. In terms of unique IPs we’ve had about 11,000 so far and it’s still going up. The mind boggles. I’m presently trying to clear a few patches and digging back into XSI. I spent a little time just getting familiar with it again, and fixed a small transform bug. Lots more to do though, but it’s been long overdue.
Wow, now we have full access to server logs (which we didn’t on Sourceforge), we finally know just how popular the site is, and it’s terrifying. The new server was overloaded really fast at first through sheer weight of demand, luckily we switched from apache to thttpd which lowered the memory requirements significantly, to the extent that we can actually run the site now (and it’s quite nippy). The scary thing is that our bandwidth is averaging a projected 90Gb/month at the moment, which is well above what we expected (and more than double what we’re paying for right now).
We have a new server from www.linode.com set up to run www.ogre3d.org now, and we’re just waiting for the DNS to update for it to be available. It appears I made a typing error in my first update, shame on me, resulting in the DNS records being wrong at the moment - please be patient while they update. Normal service will resume imminently.
Just as I sat down to do something useful today, I find someone has hacked the OGRE forums and deleted several thousand posts from the General Discussion and Recruitment forums. Words cannot adequately describe what I want to do to these people, but it involves inadequately sharpened implements and soft tissues.
Rant warning! Here’s the proof that democracy doesn’t work, and corporate greed is all that makes a difference in the world: Groklaw report on today’s EC decision I think most people knew that the EC, like any large organisation, is rife by bureaucrats and corrupution; but given the amount of high-level opposition to the CIID I thought this might be different. We even had the Legal Affairs Committee on our side.