Saturday, December 29, 2007

Dead of the Beacon?

The red beacon that guides our way in Second Life have been mostly removed in the latest client and the recent release candidate. This makes it hard to find your destination in sims that work with a central telehub. Ordinal Malaprop's blog post alerted me about this and she sum it up like this.:
  • Teleporting by any mechanism apart from clicking on the World Map to get a red circle and then going there, or by selecting “Show On Map” from a window before using it to teleport, does not provide a red beacon and arrow to the destination any more. This includes landmarks, SLURLs, the use of llMapDestination, secondlife:// links, and the New Search.
  • People who teleport into an area which has a Landing Point set will still arrive at that point.
  • But they will not have a beacon to their destination.
  • Therefore they will not be able to find their destination easily. They would actually have to track it down by comparing the X, Y and Z co-ordinates of the landmark to their current ones, fly around aimlessly in the hope of seeing a sign, ask for directions, or, far more likely, go somewhere else. Experienced and dedicated visitors will likely find a way but even they may simply give up, and the casual browser or visitor will simply pop somewhere else if unable to find the spot that they came to see. (Customers would quite frequently ask how to find my shop with red beacons available.)
  • This means that landmarks and SLURLs and so on are now pretty much useless in any region or parcel that has a landing point set. This is actually more places than one might think. Not only does it encompass many islands such as Caledon, Babbage and so on, it also affects such large parcelled establishments as malls and shopping centres upon the Mainland.
  • The whole thing is therefore a serious matter for anyone who owns property in a region with a landing point and wishes others to find it - or for that matter wishes to be able to find it themselves.

This seems like a simple matter to fix, vote on issue SVC-1125 in the jira to alert LL and get this restored.


  1. It has to death. But changing that breaks all my links. :(

  2. Are you sure? I'm on the latest version of the Windlight viewer, and it has the beacon, and an arrow.

    I'm all for getting rid of the beacon, which is an annoyance, and requires you to undo it. The arrow isn't as intrusive. How about just keeping that?