Sunday, July 15, 2007

Major Voice Chat Bug

This afternoon there was a blogger party, and things were going along well. Too well, because my client crashed, and I was told the sim crashed as well. When I crashed I was using the voice client, not the normal one. I logged back in on the normal client. Much, much, much later, after I had gone back to Yedo to help shadow with some shapes, and had been chattering away on the phone, I heard voices coming from my earphones on the floor. It was the two hosts of the blogger event, on their private channel. Logging in and out of the regular client didn't change things. Logging in and out of the voice client didn't change things. They could not hear me, even though I could hear everyone on the voice chat on their sim. However, where I was, back home at Yedo, I could not connect to the voice chat stream there.

This went on for some time. Listening to iTunes, even listening to a radio stream, didn't change things. Quitting out of Nicecast, a mac audio program for streaming out, didn't change things. However, starting a reboot had an interesting result. iTunes stopped the reboot, I disappeared off the list of active speakers and the stream stopped.

Speaking of being a fly on the wall...


  1. Wow. Ugh. I've also noticed a number of issues with the updated First Look Voice client--mostly revolving around not being able to mute my microphone despite turning off every switch and lowering every input.

    Voice has a long way to go in SL before it becomes ubiquitous. And it's important to remember that, despite the illusion to the contrary, electronic communication is never private. It's just likely you aren't being listened to most of the time.

  2. I've noticed that sl doesn't listen to other settings, the only way to turn voice off is to physically put a stop to it.

    Good reminder.

  3. All of the things you mentioned Lillie and all of the things that A. Burgess said seem like major blockers.

    Not being able to mute it is terrible. It means that off-line, unintended conversations can be picked up.

    Also, what you said, Lillie, about it continuing even after you shut it down and logged back in using the non-voice client seems to be terribly risky.

    Needless to say I have conversations with friends and family close enough to my computer to have it picked up by the mic. If it's permanently hot in spite of your settings when you have voice activated, that's pretty scary.

    I can't imagine the idea of having a phone permanently off the hook in my house connected to a bunch of people I don't know. It's a terrible breach of privacy.

    This is going to sound trite and predictable coming from me, but this is another reason why I will have it off 100% of the time.

    Anony Mouse
    "OMG, please don't bug my home." ;)

  4. I worry that LL is creating a worst of breed situation where people who want voice aren't going to want the bugs, and people who don't want voice are going to worry that when the voice chat feature is folded in that it will be accidentally live, and therefore the only way to keep your voice out of SL is for sure is to not be here, and be in some other VR.

  5. I am using voice for several days now. And I am impressed by the quality of it. Mute is working fine, but with a big lag. So it can take a minute (or more) before a person is muted, but untill now it always worked well with me. The microphone is only on when you press the talk button (you can also lock this button). And I found no lag at all with voice (not like the chat). This is because the audio stream is runnign outside of sl. So technically its ok and it will improve over the years i am sure. BUT it changes the way of sl experience completely for me. Its more direct, less role play and more like talking to people on the phone. And i already see that non-native english speakers (like me) or more shy to go in group chat with native english speakers. So people will go more together in communication with people of the same country. Typing and reading a foreign language is easier then speaking. I am sure i will loose many of my spanish and french friends with voice.