Dev4 Testing and the Sistine Whiteboard

Michelangelo doesn’t have much to worry about yet, but in today’s testing of the "dev4" developer release of Wonderland 0.5, we discovered that yes, you can rotate and move shared applications just like any other object in the world. When someone moved the whiteboard over our heads, we dubbed this the Sistine Whiteboard.

Dev4 Sistine Whiteboard

Perhaps more interesting to note is that the whiteboard control panel can now be moved on and off the HUD. In this illustration, you can see that I’ve moved the Sistine Whiteboard control panel onto the HUD, but the second whiteboard in the image has the control panel in-world at the base of the whiteboard. The magnifier icon on the far left of the control panel toggles the panel on and off the HUD.

With the whiteboard up in the air like that, we couldn’t resist standing on top of it. At the moment, you have to use the "+" and "-" keys on your numeric keypad to get your avatar to go up and down (don’t ask why they sit when moving up and down).

Dev4 - standing on whiteboard

While we were just having some fun with this, there are many potential uses for horizontal application surfaces. You can create war-room-style map tables or sketch out a floor plan that you can walk on. You can also create surfaces for voting such that each avatar moves to stand on their choice:

While it can be handy to use your whole avatar to indicate something like a voting choice, this is not the most effective way to point to 3D objects. Paul has put in some preliminary 3D telepointers. Here you can see that I’m pointing to the little robot:

Dev4 telepointer

Perhaps my favorite new dev4 feature is the ability to drag-and-drop .png or .jpg images from either your desktop or a web browser directly into Wonderland. Here we see a Wonderland window on the left and a web browser on the right which is displaying one of my whale photos stored on the Flickr photo sharing site.

Dev4 - preparing to drag image

I simply grab the photo in the Flickr window and drag it on to the Wonderland window:

Dev4 - dragging image

And then drop it. This automatically uploads the photo to the server for everyone to see.

Dev4 - dropping image

In less than a minute, I was able to grab a few more photos from the same Flickr collection and use the in-world editing tools to arrange them. Voila, a little whale photo exhibit:

Dev4 - whale photo exhibit

In addition to images, you can also drag-and-drop .svg documents into the world. This will automatically spawn an instance of the whiteboard.

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10 Responses to Dev4 Testing and the Sistine Whiteboard

  1. Dave says:

    Coooooooool

  2. Kapil says:

    Wonderful.. Awesome.. I am very excited on these features. Awaiting Dev 4 release..

  3. Augusto says:

    Awesome, when can we download this version to try it out?

  4. michel says:

    Nice job!

  5. Nicole Mordecai says:

    The test that I wrote about in this post uncovered a number of fairly serious bugs that we considered show-stoppers. We’ll be testing again today to see if those have been resolved. If so, the Dev4 release will follow in a few days.

  6. Matt Schmidt says:

    Looking really good. The drag-and-drop feature is fantastic!

  7. Nigel Wynne says:

    This looks fantastic. These features and the overall WL roadmap make this the most exciting VW I have found.

  8. Sergio says:

    Cool! You’re doing a great job with WL.

  9. Robert says:

    I’m trying Wonderland 0.5 dev4 from the SVN site but find that a number of our PC’s and laptops will no longer work since they crash out at the stage of loading the avatars. It seems to be due to an OpenGL problem and the suggestion of setting avatar.detail=low in my.run.properties made no difference.
    The Dell Optiplex 755’s run OK but not the 745’s. I’ve tried updating the graphics drivers again with no success.

  10. Jordan says:

    Hi Robert,
    Could you provide us more information? What OS are you running? What version of Java? Are you sure you are using dev4? (versus dev3). Could you post the output when the clients crash to our forums?
    http://forums.java.net/jive/forum.jspa?forumID=112
    Thanks!
    Jordan

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