AnVRopomotron 1.1 Update Notes

July 6th, 2020

We’re skipping straight to 1.1 with a lot of improvements.

  • More tarsier! Poses 2 and 3 show stages of a leap and pose 4 shows the result of a successful pounce. Tarsier 1 also updated with a longer tail.

tarsiers

  • A small new wing has opened up in the Scale Model Hall, called the Burial Chamber. Learn about Jamestown and one of its founders, Captain Gabriel Archer. View a life size model of his grave.

burial chamber

  • Remodeling the building as a single model in Blender using Archimesh instead of as many separate walls and planes in A-Frame. The benefit should be faster loading paired with more impressive looks since the building is drawn using one instruction (draw call) for the whole thing instead of a separate instruction for each individual wall.
    new

    { Newly remodeled. }

    old

    { Old view. }

     

  • Also the Blender model has light fixtures in the ceiling so I can bake the shadows they cast to texture and present them in VR without a performance loss. In fact even with the new room this version has a
    1/3rd performance gain.
  • Moved scale models around to open up the room. The same space now has a lot more empty areas for future models.
  • Rewrote how occluding zones are processed for efficiency.
  • Unrelated to the above, I rewrote a new version of the old way of occluding zones. I tried to go extra fancy with complicated zones made in Blender that covered as much ground as possible. Aaand… it doesn’t work. For example, I had a U-shaped zone but being in the empty part in the center between the arms didn’t register as leaving it. Why???? Well it turned out my collisions are based on AABB colliders, you know, Axis-Aligned Bounding Boxes. The complex zones were being treated as rectangles instead of the shapes I gave them. No getting around that but I can work with this limitation now that I know it’s there. I made box zones as before, but rearranged the room so there are more walls blocking lines of sight for better zones. This works!
  • It turns out I never fully optimized the centerpiece model so it was being drawn with 9 draw calls. I tweaked the model so now it is drawn with 2 draw calls and the file lost another megabyte.
  • Redid Height Chart as a texture to drop draw calls from around 30 to 1. Rearranged heights and added the tall Australopithecus afarensis Chewie.
  • Moved text around to look nice.

See the previous updates.


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