Archived Release Notes

NOTE: The VKC release notes are no longer maintained on this page and may reflect information that no longer is current. For current information on changes and updates, please refer to the Release Notes Page.

7.1 Release Notes 17-March-2008

7.1.1 VKC Commerce System

Mr. Genosse completely rewrote the Commerce System in this Release. That is, the way one buys, transfers, updates or retrieves their dog will be completely different. He also fixed several defects in the dogs' code and made a few enhancements.

As a continuing example, let's say you buy a Doberman and name it "Fido the First". Examples are in parentheses below.

7.1.2. Buying a Dog

The price of an adoptable dog appears above its head. Right click on the dog of your choice and select 'Pay'. Click on the price to pay, and a folder appears in your inventory. The folder name is 'VKC' plus the breed you selected (e.g. 'VKC Doberman'). In the folder is a redball, your dog's first toy and your dog (the object with the name of the breed you selected, like 'Doberman'). Drag this object in-world to rez your dog.

When you rez your dog the first time, he takes the name of 'Pup', but it's a good idea to name your dog right away. Say pup name and the name you want to give your dog (say pup name Fido the First). After that, when you take your dog back to inventory, it's name will appear (e.g. "Fido the First").

VKC Dog prices are dynamically driven by their popularity. As a dog's popularity goes up and down, so does it's price! So if you buy a dog one day and come back a week later, you may find the price of that dog has gone up or down since you bought it.

7.1.3. Dog Clinic

The new veterinarian works by chat commands. These are the commands the veterinarian understands:

  • list — see a list of dogs you own.
  • claim — retrieve a lost dog.
  • update — fix or update a broken dog.

If you want to see a list of the dogs you own, go to the Dog Clinic and say list. That is, type list in the chat window while you are standing near the Dog Clinic.

If you lose your dog, go to the Dog Clinic and say claim and the name of your dog (for example: claim fido). Your dog will appear in your inventory in the Objects folder with the name of its breed (e.g. Doberman). When you first rez your dog, it will automatically change to its proper name (Fido the First). Then when you return it to inventory, it will go into the Objects folder with your dog's name. You may want to move it back into the VKC folder to help keep track of it.

If your dog is broken or you want to get a newer version, go to the Dog Clinic and rez your dog nearby. Then say update and the name of your dog (for example: update fido). Unless your dog is completely unresponsive, the vet will take your dog (it will disappear) and return it to you (updated) in your Objects folder. If your dog is completely unresponsive, you will have to delete the dog yourself and claim the dog as lost (see the preceding paragraph).

7.1.4. Transferring your dog

To transfer your dog to another avatar, it's important to remember that you can only transfer a dog after it has been rezzed and has picked up its name. After you have rezzed the dog, take it back to your inventory. Then, simply drag it from your inventory onto the avatar or the avatar's Profile.

REMEMBER: If your dog still has only its breed name in your inventory, rez it first so that he picks up his identity. Then you can take him back to inventory and transfer him to another avatar. If you did not give him a name, he will have the name Pup.

If you mistakenly transfer an unrezzed dog, it will disappear. As the owner of record, you will have to claim him at the Dog Clinic, rez him so that he can pick up his identity, take him back to inventory, then transfer him to your friend.

7.1.5. Petting your dog

Anyone can come and pet your dog now! When someone right-clicks on your dog and selects "Pet me" from the pie menu, they will come up to your dog and pet it.

Master Animator Mr. Solcar Amat graciously agreed to create new "Pet Me" Animations for the VKC Dogs. The new animations are longer, more detailed and much more natural and realistic. You and your friends will really enjoy them!

7.1.6. Instincts vs. Tricks

Mr. Genosse separated the dogs' tricks into two different modules, "tricks" (as before) and "instincts." Instincts are the "factory installed" tricks that come with every dog, such as "sit" or "heel." By separating them into their own modules, an owner can no longer accidentally erase them. Since the instincts no longer share the memory space with custom tricks, we now have a lot more room in memory for new tricks! A new or updated dog will have the full 2K of memory available for tricks.

For advanced owners, if you want to replace an instinct with your own sequence of commands, use the command override instead of learn to teach the dog a new way of performing his instincts. an instinct with a trick by the same name.

In active behavior mode, the dogs will choose among both their tricks and their instincts to act.

7.1.7. Holding the Chihuahua and the Bichon in Your Arms

Yes, I added the "here" instinct to Bichon too! Now both the Bichon and the Chihuahua can jump up into your arms. But in this new version you have to tell your dog it's ok to do that first by saying attach. Like other commands, just say your dog's name andattach; a blue menu will pop up asking you for permission to attach and animate your avatar. After you click Yes, you can give the command here and your Chihuahua or Bichon will jump into your arms! If you change your mind you can say attach no and he will no longer attach. Remember the only way to let go of your dog after he is in your arms is to right-click on him and select "Drop." Some parcels do not allow this command, in which case select "Detach" to return your dog to your inventory.

7.1.8. Two new turn commands

The dogs have two new ways of turning, "toward" and "away." If you say turn toward, your dog will turn to face you (or whoever gives the command) and if you say turn away, your dog will turn away from the speaker.

This should be fun for tricks as well as useful for scripters of third-party toys and accessories!

7.2 Release Notes 13-April-2008

7.2.1. Staying Upright

Mr. Genosse completely changed the way the dogs stay upright. We think it's a big improvement to their natural movement. The dogs now tilt according to the terrain they are on and where their target is. There should be much less need to give the pop command, as the dogs now sense whether they are at the right angle.

7.2.2. Physical Dogs

Dogs are now 100% physical. (OK, not quite. They have to go non-physical when they cross borders). When there is time dilation on the sim, they simply stop trying to move but they stay physical. This improvement means that the dogs should stop going through walls or getting stuck up in the air.

7.2.3. Friends

Mr. Genosse added a new command: friend. The command lets you give full control of your dog to one other person. With your friend nearby, say friend and the full name of the person. For example: 

fido friend Enrico Genosse

When it works, the dog will walk over to the person and beg, then lie down. If it doesn't work, the dog will go to the rest pose. Be sure to check your typing when issuing the friend command. You must use accurate spelling and capitalization. To clear the command, say:

fido friend no

After that, your friend will no longer have special privileges

VKC Dogs can have only one owner and one friend. You may change who is a friend to your dog at any time. To replace a friend, simply use the friend command with the name of the new friend and your dog will recognize this new friend and forget about the old friend.

7.2.4. Minor changes

The commands go nearest and go random will ignore targets more than 8 meters above or below. That should help with the dog on roof problem.

The command remember has been added. To clear all the tricks and marks from your dog's memory, tell your dog

fido remember nothing nothing nothing

Dog names now support UTF-8 extended characters.

7.3 Release Notes 11 — Aug 2008

7.3.1. Vastly improved "Pet Me" Animations

Master Animator Mr. Solcar Amat graciously agreed to create new "Pet Me" Animations for the VKC Dogs. The new animations are longer, more detailed, and much more natural and realistic. You and your friends will really enjoy them!

7.3.2. Improved Heel and the new Position command.

Rather than following behind you on heel, the dogs now come up and stay on your left side. As you turn and move, your dog will work to stay on your left. You can change the position where the dogs heel with the new command position. As described in the Advanced Command section above, two numbers follow the command. One number is for direction and the other is for distance. Direction is given in degrees, with 0 being directly in front of you, 90 being to your right, 180 directly behind you, and 270 to your left. Distance is given in meters. The default command to keep your dog on your left is position 270 1. If you want Fido on your right instead, say fido position 90 1. (You may want to do this if you have more than one dog, for instance). You could also say, fido position 0 4 to have Fido out in front of you.

7.3.3. Different ways of dealing with water.

The current dogs simply ignore water, and will walk along the ground underwater when they encounter it. Now the dogs have a new command: water. Another word must follow the command. So, the command would be one of the following:

fido water swim

fido water avoid

fido water ignore

The last choice is the same as the dogs' current behavior. If you spend any time near the water, you'll really enjoy this new feature. My favorite is swim. Let's say you want Fido to swim behind you while you sail. Give him a command like:

fido position 180 2

fido water swim

fido heel

Now, head to the water and Fido will swim along the surface of the water behind you!

7.3.4. Advanced Moveto command

This command is available mainly for dog accessories designers and professional trainers. Most people will never have need for it. Up to now, the moveto command was followed by three parameters — the person, object or mark to move to; the range to move within; and the speed. For example, the "go" command is made up of "moveto _ 3 6." Now the command can be followed by a fourth numeric parameter called flags. Here are the basic values "flags" can contain:

  • 1 = Lock onto target (like in heel)
  • 2 = Do not turn toward target
  • 4 = No animation while moving
  • 8 = Move non-physically (llSetPos)
  • 16 = Use position offset (see 'position' command)
You can add these values up to get various combinations of behavior. For example, 14 means the dog will move non-physically, without animation, and without turning.
7.3.5. A new Mute command

We've all run into those annoying people who keep commanding your dog when you have something else in mind. Now you can use the new command: mute. Follow the command by at least the first few letters of the first name of the person you want to mute, and your dog will ignore that person (along with any others whose first names start with those letters.) For example, to mute me you would say, "fido mute enrico." You can only mute one name at a time. To clear a name, say, "fido mute none." To mute everybody but yourself, say, "fido mute all." (Actually, if you have given the 'friend' command, your dog will still obey both you and the friend.)

7.3.6. New Shape for the Bubbles

The invisible protective bubbles that surround the dog were originally designed to work around problems with the old physics engine. The new Havok4 physics engine fixes some major problems but creates some new minor problems, so Mr. Genosse redesigned the bubbles to optimize for the new engine. The bubbles no longer cover the dog completely, but they create a small (10 cm) gap under the dogs' feet to reduce lag in the sim. Eventually, the Lindens will remove the need for the 10 cm gap and on a later release Mr. Genosse will lower the dogs even closer to the ground.

7.3.7 Improved Dog Movement

Mr. Genosse spent some more time experimenting with the dogs in the new physics-engine environment and found some ways to improve their movement. You'll find that the dogs jump around or "fly" much less now. They follow better on heel, and get over high obstacles more quickly. They also face the direction they are going better!

7.3.8. Objects Calling Heel

Before, if you own an object (like a HUD) that gave the heel command, the dog would not obey. Now he does.

7.3.9. "Illegal" Dog Names

Due to some limitation in SL and some in the way the dog tricks work, there are some characters that cannot be used in your dog's name. Those characters are extended (UTF) characters used in many non-English languages and special characters like apostrophe (') or quote ("). Now if you try to use them when you name your dog, he will reject them. Before, he would accept them and then fail to work properly afterwards.