Notes from David Fliesen, 29-Jun-2009, Amended by Austin Tate 21-Aug-2009
Blue Mars is currently in a Beta-test state. The information here is publicly available.
BETA RELEASE & OPERATING SYSTEMS
Beta version became available for developers on Monday 29th June 2009, with a developer update and first "User" viewer available for developer preview on 20-Aug-2009. Blue Mars only works on Microsoft Operating Systems (OSs), not on Macintosh or Linux due to the Crytek Cryengine. It will take a fairly powerful system and graphics card to run Blue Mars. You should use a high speed system purchased within the past year. It was primarily designed for Vista, but works on the following OSs:
* Vista 64
* Windows 7 (being released in October 2009)
- "First" "High Definition" Virtual World (though users can try the "Ultra" graphics setting and long view distances in Second Life viewer too on a sufficiently powerful system)
- Can host meetings with up to 5,000 people in one area
- You get 4 square kilometers to develop inside. 1 square kilometer inside that area is available to add objects into (and can be broken up in parcels throughout the world). Avatars can move through both area types, which can also have continuous vegetation.
- Rich "time of day" lighting (with dynamic soft shadows, real time ambient maps, and light beams)
- Long Range View Distance
- Parallax Occlusion Mapping
- 3D Ocean Technology
- Facial Animation
- Parametric Skeletal Animation System
- Procedural Motion Warping
- Object Motion Blur
- Depth of Field
- Breakable Buildings
- Breakable Vegetation System
- Component Vehicle Damage
- Advanced Cinematic Effects
- Artificial Intelligence (AI) Gateway (where anyone can make AI and routines run on your own servers)
- You're not limited to a certain number of prims. It's more about how much data you store then on a polygon count. You can make a 5,000 polygon building in Blue Mars if you like.
- Server Side Rendering
- Uses OnLive Thin Client
- Scale-form Flash Interpreter
- Uses PAK files for content to upload to Blue Mars
- Has LULA scripting
- Stream-based Processing
---- Click on "Explore" in the menu on the left side
---- Then select "Media"
---- You'll especially want to look at the "Cryengine" and "Overview" movies
You need to be granted permission to be a developer at either the "Block Developer" or "City Developer" level. Blue Mars works a bit different than Second Life (SL). Instead of multiple SIMs, you have multiple worlds with 62,500 meters in each world. They will lease cities to content providers to develop, and then city developers may lease to block developers. Visitors won't be able to create their own content in world. They do this to avoid the sexual items and harassing things common in some other virtual worlds. A "Block Developer" has the equivalent of 1 SIM in SL, but can't do terrain editing or Advance EULA scripting. The "City Developer" has more rights and the equivalent of 4 SIMs in SL.
HOW TO UPLOAD OBJECTS
- Export from your 3D editor tool to Collada data
- Import to Blue Mars Item Editor (to ensure that it works and looks right in world)
- Upload to Avatar Reality (to bring into Blue Mars)
- Avatar Reality can provide "City Editor" software if you sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) with them