[Update: New URL] Today's Online Meetup: We're Using Mozilla Hubs

by Ben Pace1 min read29th Mar 202011 comments

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That's right! Tomorrow/Today (Sunday Mar 29th) we're having an online LessWrong meetup in Mozilla Hubs. You're welcome to join and chat with some of the interesting people who read LessWrong, SSC, Overcoming Bias, and so on. I am personally quite excited to talk with a bunch of you. Make sure you read the rules for joining the hub.

At 12 noon PDT we'll be having the Hanson/Mowshowitz "Expose The Youth" Debate, then after that at around 2pm we'll having a post-debate meetup. This an experiment, I'll do it more if it's fun.

Basic controls:

  • WASD to move
  • G to toggle flying
  • Click and Drag to look around
  • You can hear and be heard by people in proportion to how close you are to them

The rules:

  • Only 25 people can be in a room. Move around and check out the other rooms!
  • Login as soon as you arrive and use either your real name or a standard alias like your LessWrong username. I'd like some basic accountability please, and today I will remove people who don't follow this rule.
  • Use headphones. Mozilla Hubs does not have any basic feedback reduction tech, all sound will get unenjoyably recursive quite quickly unless everyone uses headphones.
  • Being weird is positively fine and I don't think you have a limited budget to spend, you can just be super weird. But if you're too loud and if people are having a bad time because of your presence, a moderator will remove you from the rooms.

I've made a few basic rooms. If you've not visited before or need some help, enter the tutorial room. Here's the first:

Please leave the tutorial room once you've solved your problems, to make space for others.

And here are the hangout rooms.

Extra rooms in case you want them for whatever reason:

For anyone who has trouble with the Mozilla Hubs setup, we also have a backup Discord server that you can join here.

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11 comments, sorted by Highlighting new comments since Today at 11:26 AM
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Well, that sure was something.

Zvi and Robin did a great job hashing out the details of the policy proposal, and I appreciate them doing this so quickly (I contacted them on Tuesday). My thanks to the 5 or so people who joined the call to ask questions, and also to the 100 people who watched for the full 2 hours. (I was only expecting 40-80 people to even show up, so I am a bit surprised!)

The Mozilla Hubs experiment was an experiment. The first 20 minutes were hectic, with people asking all the usual questions you ask at parties like "CAN ANYONE HEAR ME!", "WHERE AM I?" and "Why is there a panda?", but after that it calmed down.

It was kinda awkward, there were no body language or visual cues to follow when you should speak in a group conversation, so there was a lot of silence. Eventually there were two rooms of 15-20 people in a big circle conversation, and it started getting pretty chill, and I had a good time for like an hour before leaving to cook pasta (thank you to the guy who shared an improved pasta recipe with us all, it made my lunch better). That said, we'll pick a different platform as the main one in future.

So yeah. I'm gonna reach out to people to do more debates, ping me if you have an idea for a conversation you want to have. Thanks all for coming :)

P.S. Feedback form if you'd like to fill it out: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSd5bgmdN3pGFiGZWCmwqzN6QA3jjVDELJ4x6KhpKZbQDHAH-A/viewform

I couldn't get things to work here, but thank you Elizabeth, Raymond and Ben for trying to help me! Have fun!

I am trying to use Hubs through Oculus Quest. So far I am extremely unimpressed. If I manage to enter one of the non-tutorial rooms without a hang, I might get slightly more impressed, but the audio is also pretty crap for me. Lots of weird static and glitchiness. Sometimes when I turn my head I lose tracking and the world jitters. I think WebVR is not a good substitute for native VR apps.

EDIT: Ok, I rebooted the headset (and switched from the Mozilla browser, "Firefox Reality", to the native browser), and it seems to be working smoothly now. Not sure what the cause was of the issues before.

Yeah, the whole platform is definitely still pretty buggy. 

My experience was great after 30 initial minutes of chaos, and then I had an hour of pretty good conversation. 

I finally made it into one of the rooms. I suspect I'm having performance issues? The tutorial room had 4 avatars and very few objects, and loaded fairly promptly. The other environments are more complex with more people in them. I've finally gotten into one of them, but it's ... bad. Audio is almost unusable. A lot of objects are failing to render. Tracking is hopeless. Movement is impossible.

I suppose I could try rebooting the headset and see if anything improves.

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I tried taking a video to demonstrate the issues, but I seem to have hung the headset. I think the Quest probably just can't do Mozilla Hubs with adequate performance.

It has no trouble at all with similar environments in native apps, so again I wonder if WebVR is to blame.

EDIT: Honestly I wish I could get a video of the truly comedic amount of problems this has caused the headset. First I got a dialog that "Oculus System" had stopped responding, then the dialog separated into two pieces at a jaunty angle to each other and the display froze. Then I tapped the power button, and got a dialog asking if I wanted to power off the headset, but I was unable to click any buttons. One of the controllers seemed to be tracking inverted from reality somehow (pointed along the opposite vector in VR from how the real controller was pointed.) The other one was sort of gently orbiting.

Honestly, I have found VR to be a pretty buggy experience overall, but this is definitely the worst behavior I have ever seen from this platform. It's pretty funny.

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I have personally found VR mozilla hubs worse than computer screen mozilla-hubs.

Had a similar experience - pretty disappointing tbh

Alas, we are running into some kind of technical delay. More details soon.