Virtual Conference Room

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Artur
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Virtual Conference Room

by Artur » Post

Would it be possible to create a virtual conference room/world in minetest?

I am thinking of setting up a server to which participants can freely connect, possibly change to unique avatars (perhaps even using own face pictures), and then go into rooms for virtual discussions and presentations. The presentation would be eg. via online streaming of video or simply by having a textboard with a link to external video/audio stream.

In the end, all the conference stuff (text chatting, audio talks, video presentations) could be done outside of minetest (and to provide links and timetable in minetest world). The added benefit of using minetest would however be the "feeling" of gathering in the same place for the conference.

Sokomine
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Re: Virtual Conference Room

by Sokomine » Post

Artur wrote: possibly change to unique avatars (perhaps even using own face pictures),
When you connect to a server, the server will send you all textures. Therefore it's not possible to add more textures/skins while the server is running.
Artur wrote: and then go into rooms for virtual discussions and presentations. The presentation would be eg. via online streaming of video or simply by having a textboard with a link to external video/audio stream.
Might be an intresting way to meet. But what will you do if your visitors start doing what MT is built for - i.e. changing the world? :-)
A list of my mods can be found here.

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sorcerykid
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Re: Virtual Conference Room

by sorcerykid » Post

Yes this is somewhat do-able, but there are a number of shortcomings that would make this less than ideal.

For one, HUDs are extremely limited. So being able to present information as an overlay (like a list of connected participants with their avatar images), would be extremely difficult. Also Minetest has very few key-binding possibilities. So if you wanted to allow complex interactions (like waving your hand or shaking hands), you're basically out of luck. Also video and audio streaming is not yet supported, unless you resort to animated textures. And last-but not least, there's no way to link to a Website in-game. At best, you'd have to display a form, with an editable text field for the user to copy and paste the URL into their browser.

Still, I think a virtual conference room would make for a very interesting application, particularly given the growing popularity of Zoom and video conferencing services in general. I recently completed development on an entire virtual danceclub for Minetest 5.3, along with a customized client. So if you are skilled at finding workarounds, then there are a lot possibilities.

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bebebeko
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Re: Virtual Conference Room

by bebebeko » Post

Sokomine wrote:
Sat Aug 15, 2020 00:12
When you connect to a server, the server will send you all textures. Therefore it's not possible to add more textures/skins while the server is running.
If i understand correctly, after this PR https://github.com/minetest/minetest/pull/9961 was merged, such an opportunity appeared

Please correct me if I'm wrong.

Sokomine
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Re: Virtual Conference Room

by Sokomine » Post

bebebeko wrote: If i understand correctly, after this PR https://github.com/minetest/minetest/pull/9961 was merged, such an opportunity appeared
Oh! That's great! I wasn't even aware of that PR.
A list of my mods can be found here.

Artur
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Re: Virtual Conference Room

by Artur » Post

sorcerykid wrote:
Sat Aug 15, 2020 00:30
And last-but not least, there's no way to link to a Website in-game. At best, you'd have to display a form, with an editable text field for the user to copy and paste the URL into their browser.
I saw somewhere a mod or hack where hitting a block/node would open a host application. Maybe this could be used for loading a web site in the host browser as well?

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bebebeko
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Re: Virtual Conference Room

by bebebeko » Post

Artur wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 08:08
sorcerykid wrote:
Sat Aug 15, 2020 00:30
And last-but not least, there's no way to link to a Website in-game. At best, you'd have to display a form, with an editable text field for the user to copy and paste the URL into their browser.
I saw somewhere a mod or hack where hitting a block/node would open a host application. Maybe this could be used for loading a web site in the host browser as well?
Hi, i have written an similiar mod.
PLEASE BE AWARE, USE THAT ONLY IN SANDBOX ENVIRONMENT, DON'T USE IN PUBLIC SERVERS BECAUSE IT'S ONE BIG SECURITY HOLE


I'm using modchannel feature to acheive it: https://github.com/minetest/minetest/pull/6351
CSM: (clientside mod):
https://github.com/metacoma/minetest-gn ... l/init.lua

Also you need to explicitly enable this mod in minetest.conf (on client side)
~/.minetest/clientmods/mods.conf:

load_mod_channel = true


Disable security for this mod
~/.minetest/minetest.conf

enable_client_modding = true
secure.trusted_mods = channel


Server side mod:
https://github.com/metacoma/minetest-gn ... l/init.lua


Example usage:

minetest.register_node("node:site", {
tiles = { node_www },
paramtype = "light",
diggable = false,
on_punch = function(pos, node, player, pointed_thing)
getUserChannel(player:get_player_name()):send_all("xdg-open https://minetest.net")
end,
})


Youtube video, how it works:
Youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4LH5Fyt-cQM
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Last edited by bebebeko on Mon Aug 17, 2020 13:08, edited 1 time in total.

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bebebeko
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Re: Virtual Conference Room

by bebebeko » Post

Artur wrote:
Fri Aug 14, 2020 13:58
Would it be possible to create a virtual conference room/world in minetest?

I am thinking of setting up a server to which participants can freely connect, possibly change to unique avatars (perhaps even using own face pictures), and then go into rooms for virtual discussions and presentations. The presentation would be eg. via online streaming of video or simply by having a textboard with a link to external video/audio stream.

In the end, all the conference stuff (text chatting, audio talks, video presentations) could be done outside of minetest (and to provide links and timetable in minetest world). The added benefit of using minetest would however be the "feeling" of gathering in the same place for the conference.
I definitely like this idea

Sometime ago, i saw a video with "big" (>100 people) online conference in minecraft, but unfortunately can't google it at this moment, but i'm found something else (it's not adversting)

https://alloverse.com/updates/

video:
Youtube https://youtu.be/0VwW5l_59D0
Image

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bebebeko
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Re: Virtual Conference Room

by bebebeko » Post

Also, it might be interesting too, browser inside minetest

Youtube https://youtu.be/kx3RPqmhJrE
Image

Artur
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Re: Virtual Conference Room

by Artur » Post

bebebeko wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 14:09
Also, it might be interesting too, browser inside minetest
Oh really cool! Also display of YouTube works, so perhaps one can stream a live YT channel of the conference talk this way.

PS: The whole idea of a virtual conference room comes from the desired to host this workshop in a virtual way: https://oscw.space/ There we have talks (slides), hands-on tutorials, pitches, and workgroups. I am curious to see how and what of it we could integrate inside minetest.

Artur
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Re: Virtual Conference Room

by Artur » Post

Thanks again for those example. Unfortunately those works are a few years old (the embedded Chromium browser) and I could not get it to run (was using a docker container to build the CEF and then build minetest, where the first one was failing for various errors)..

I am quite lost now. There is so much potential if a browser could be embedded in minetest, but it seems that this as a rather exotic idea that is of interest to almost no-one?

In particular during these times of social distancing it could be great to meet in minetest and go into a virtual cinema to watch a movie (streaming via embedded browser on a large block), or have a jitsi meeting, or build a large living room to watch TV with your friends while they are in fact 200 km away...

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sorcerykid
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Re: Virtual Conference Room

by sorcerykid » Post

Streaming movies in-game poses many legal hurdles, due to copyright. Unless you are willing to navigate a minefield of licensing agreements and pay hundreds of dollars in royalties, then it's unlikely you will see full-blown cinemas in a multiplayer open-source game. Of course, embedding an entire Web browser into Minetest may be technically feasible, but it's also a remarkably obtuse approach to watching videos with friends. And depending on the implementation, it could run afoul of copyright laws.

When I relaunched my virtual nightclub, I secured public performance licensing with ASCAP, BMI, and SoundExchange. This way the music stream itself is legally compliant, so all my bases are covered. I think virtual gatherings are important in this time of social distancing. And an immersive 3d component certainly takes it to the next level. But it's also important to showcase how these technologies can be a legally viable alternative, both for the benefit of consumers as well as content creators.

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