On his excellent blog Daniel Voyager just mentioned a video he found on youtube.
In it uploader Chris Collins shows the first few minutes of what it is like to start up the High Fidelity alpha version.
The video is unlisted but accessible, so I hope he doesn’t mind me sharing it with you here.
Some of the things I noticed;
The team behind High Fidelity seems to use Hifi as an abbreviation as well, which was to be expected, but still fun to see.
Chris is trying Hifi on a Macbook, these have fantastic trackpads, its what I love most about my Mac.
Hifi is using this to let you look around, by placing two fingers on the pad, you steer where the eyes are looking.
I love that.
Other avatars will appear as blue balls till you get close enough.
The second you log in, you’ll see your avatar looking at you and using your webcam to pick up your facial expressions, which I think is a pretty fantastic idea.
I’d love to see that in SL.
VOIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) seems to be working right away, so far I’ve not yet seen any evidence of other ways of communicating.
This may become an issue as many users of virtual worlds prefer to not use their real life voice.
There is text chat, of course, but at the moment this is global, you chat to everyone at once.
It isn’t quite clear yet how you can text chat with someone next to you without everyone listening in.
The avatar building window is very basic, mostly just a few lines of words, but it seems you’ll be able to upload your own avatars later.
I am sure the avatar building tools will improve a lot but it is interesting to hear about creating your avatar outside of the virtual world.
Chris also does a bit of building, rezzing a few voxels.
The whole UI appears to be very basic and easy to handle, but there also don’t seem to be that many options and possibilities yet.
Which is to be expected from an Alpha testing phase, but it would be nice if they can keep it all as user friendly as it is now.
Visually it is not very impressive, yet.
I know, its alpha testing phase and unfortunately I have not yet been able to try it myself, but I am just a very visual type of person and have to confess I am very narrow minded when it comes to virtual world, I just want to know if I could create my authentic and realistic historical reconstructions there.
I want complicated buildings with photo realistic textures and right now that is still very far away.
I’m just obsessed with virtual building and I don’t want to just rez some cubes and stick em together, I want to do mathematical complicated architecture.
At the moment Hifi looks like Minecraft and although that is a fantastic game, it failed to appeal to me because of its graphics.
So if you’re like me, this is something we have to look past in this early stage of Hifi.
Either way, Hifi keeps getting more and more interesting but it is also clear that they still have a long way to go if they one day want to offer us a world that looks as good or better than Second Life.
Can’t wait to give it a go myself!
(Yes, that was a subtle hint towards the Hifi team)
Update; The video is now set to private and can no longer be seen online.