Archive for September, 2014
A while ago, when I started this blog i used to rely on a couple of plugins to perform a few basic functions: Visitor statistics, Spell checking and a couple of other things. At some point down the road most of these got merged into “Jetpack”. Jetpack is kind of an official “megaplugin” that gives you access to a bunch of excellent features and let you piggyback on some services provided by WordPress.com. But there is a catch:
It’s extremely slow.
It might not matter on a professional, high capacity server, but the reality is that this is not what i have access to. I can “barely” run an unmodded Minecraft server. Jetpack introduced a huge latency both for visitors and for me when publishing, yet some of its features (Stats, automatic social media publishing, spell-checking, contact form…) where invaluable to me. Followed several years of damage control, trying to optimize the site’s response time with all kinds of caching and preloading voodoo.
Today somehow was the last straw, I say goodbye to Jetpack and hope that i will never have to come back. Now for those who are curious, here are the plugins i now use in replacement (subject to change), and YES it’s still faster.
- WordPress Contact Form Maker
- Google Analytics Dashboard for WP
- NextScripts: Social Networks Auto-Poster
- TinyMCE Spellcheck
As it turns out, when you try to use Twitter/Facebook and other social media APIs as an individual, without using any kind of intermediate service/company, the procedure goes from mildly annoying, to utterly impossible: Google for example doesn’t want to hear about you, Facebook and twitter both want your cellphone number, Plurk was by far the most convenient so far… but who use Plurk anyway?
I took a week away from modeling and SL stuff in general, I needed it.
I closed the back of the dress and made the “chest pocket” that I plan on animating (well… the alpha kind of animation really) to reach the locking mechanism, fusing the dress and the apron in the back was a little tricky because of the long over/under areas where the apron end.
You can also see the locking post poking out of the apron in one of the shots, but the post and lock will be 100% alpha when the “chest pocket” is closed.
There are a few “problem areas” where the body poke through, I will fix those later once this draft model is finished and I can start cleaning it up, ideally, I want to get as close to the avatar mesh as possible, it will help with rigging.
I usually try to do other things during the weekend, but this one was pretty boring so I had 3 long nightly sessions:
- I reworked the bib front to get the exposed corners on the white trim and a more starched look.
- Worked on the low poly model, which is progressing surprisingly fast.
I am not fully comfortable with a few of the elements in the geometry, I’m trying to follow the contours of the high poly fold and creases and it does some funny things. I also want to rework the shoulder seams to mark them into the model, not just for looks, but also as a conveniently placed texture seam.