[sldev] Re: Vote for voice protocol documentation
matthew.dowd at hotmail.co.uk
Thu Aug 16 00:49:40 PDT 2007
> > LL is not in charge of what codec is used or what patented algorithms
> > are used, unless they dump the solution entirely (not going to happen)
> > or strongarm Vivox in to rewriting their software
> I do believe that's what LL is paying them to do, write software.
I don't believe that is the case - I think what LL is paying Vivox to do is run hosted VOIP servers.
However, as John said, the deal is done. I did think however that the comment in the digest #23 wasn't entirely accurate in implying that the choice of Vivox was due to the lack of viable open source alternatives for VOIP software. My impression from this list is that much of the Vivox solution is based on open source, and with the possible exception of directed audio rather than point source audio the bits there are alternative for the bits that aren't.
I suspect the real driver was not lack of alternatives as regards the software, but the fact that Vivox offered managed VOIP servers hosted independently of the SL grid. I can easily see how that would be extremely attractive (you don't need VOIP systems engineers, you aren't going to overload the existing colos, problems are someone elses worry - I suspect all the recent voice maintenance windows have been undertaken by Vivox staff rather than LL). I do suspect that Vivox really wanted the publicity of having SL as a customer and probably did a hard sell on LL, offering some sweetners as well.
Those, plus the advantage of someone else having done the work of putting the pieces together, I think drove the decision rather than lack of opensource technologies. Third party hosting, is I think a valid reason for making this choice even if it is unfortunate concerning open sourcing the client.
The codec is a potential problem - as the Vivox component is not redistributable and as the codec is patent protected, it essentially prevents anyone distributing standalone voice enabled software based on the SL Viewer or libsecondlife (at least not software which is useable without also installing the official viewer and merging the two).
The jira on voice and linux makes interesting reading - with LL saying all the link is there but they need a "blob" from Vivox for Linux, and Vivox saying they fully support Linux and the delay is entirely in LL's court...
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