Unlinking blues

build-floater

The Build Tools floater – Firestorm’s version; the official viewer’s doesn’t really differ significantly. Please click on the picture for a larger version.

Whether you live your virtual existence in Second Life or OpenSim, the viewer’s build floater (right) is, in all likelihood, an integral part of your experience. From simply adjusting your worn attachments to putting together intricate and complex builds, using the build floater is practically inescapable.

As I’m pretty sure everyone in SL and OpenSim knows, to put several (or many) prims, sculpts and / or meshes together, you need to link them. Now, imagine the following scenario: You’ve been working on a complex build for weeks, and you’re near its completion – you’ve even made scripts to control parameters of its various parts. And you accidentally click the “Unlink” button, which is “conveniently” placed right next to the “Link” button. And you’ve just unlinked everything. Yes, I know. You can re-select everything and link the items again. But everything will be out of whack; different root prim, different link order, and don’t get me started on the extra work you’ll have to do on the scripts. Or the LI discrepancies under the new accounting system.

I was discussing the matter with Inara Pey recently, and she said we should be asked to confirm we really want to unlink the selected object(s) – just like we’re asked to confirm that we want to log out.

It actually makes sense. Quitting and logging in again doesn’t really cause much inconvenience. It’s usually just a matter of minutes before we’re back in-world, usually where we were when we logged out. But unlinking a complex, scripted object can be a royal pain. So, I have decided to file a feature request JIRA on SL’s official bug tracker system, and (after being prompted by Whirly Fizzle) another one on Firestorm’s.

The proposed functionality is as follows:

When you click on the “Unlink” button, a pop-up window (accompanied by the typical sound alert) will appear, with the prompt “Are you sure you want to unlink the selected object(s)?”. Underneath, there will be the option for you to never be shown this message again (“Do not show me this again”). It’s quite simple, really, and would help us avoid frustrating and time-consuming mistakes.

notice

We’re asked to confirm we want to log out of SL or OpenSim, so why not get a notification of this kind when we’re about to unlink a linkset?

If you think such a new feature would be useful to you and you’d like to help bring attention to these two JIRAs, watch them on their respective bug tracker systems (at least in LL’s case, voting doesn’t really do much). Of course, there can be more ways to further improve things: Different colours for the two buttons, for instance, and / or a confirmation for when you click the “Link” button.

UPDATE: The Firestorm team responded quickly to my feature request; Ansariel Hiller added this notification facility, and it will be available in version 4.7.0 of the popular viewer.

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With thanks to Inara Pey and Whirly Fizzle

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See also:

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Shortlink: http://wp.me/p2pUmX-J9

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One thought on “Unlinking blues

  1. I use shortcuts to link and unlink and had my quote of issues (On open sim i made a castle that was more then 4000 prims, i did link them all and then when tried to unlink a part of it, unlinked all instead).
    But i do think that extra step to unlink is only acceptable if there is also a option to ignore it, like you show in your example, that is a welcome feature for sure.

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