How to Organize Inventory

organizeinventoryThe virtual world experience sometimes can be impeded when one has has an out-of-control inventory containing hundreds, if not thousands, of items that need to be waded through before find the item one was looking for. It only takes a little bit of time, some energy, and maybe a scripted organizer or two to sort through the various folders of inventory and determine what needs to be kept and what needs to be sent to the trash. It very well may need to be spread over several sessions.

First, it is important to determine what types of items will be processed during each session. Perhaps during one session only freebies found during the many in-world hunts will be sorted, another session might be set aside for sorting textures, a third session could be sorting anything named “Object”, and so on. Breaking the process into small pieces process one-at-a-time can make it seem more manageable and worth the effort.

Unless you are a very sentimental person the task of dividing items into only a few piles (one reserved for everything going into the trash to be purge later). The likely piles will consist of those items expected to be used on a regular basis, items that need to be kept but kept in storage (i.e. moved into the contents tab of a rezzed box object and then taking that box object into inventory), or perhaps a third pile for no-copy transferable items to be given away or sold to others in a virtual yard sale.

While not required, some find it useful to utilize an organizational tool such as a scripted texture sorting tool or a pose stand where animations and gestures can be moved into it and then the tool itself is only rezzed on an as-needed basis. Once everything is organized into a system unique to the user (after all, they are they only one that is going to access their own inventory window within the virtual world viewer) time will be saved and the performance of their system should improve everything.

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The Hidden Value of Furniture

furnishingsThe furnishings used within a store is important because from a buyer’s point of view it will greatly affect their firm impressions of the goods or services available. Furniture should be high quality and appeasing to look at while also functional at the same time. It should blend in with the theme of the rest of the store (i.e. wall and floor colors) without impeding the flow of traffic.

While in a virtual world one does need to be concerned about whether furniture is well painted, the textures used on the furniture should be detailed enough to have a sense of quality but not necessarily at a high resolution as the texture needs to rez in a reasonable amount of time. Stores that mostly consist of plain grey surfaces for an extended period of time can be a turn-off to any potential buyers. Once the textures on furniture does become visible textures should be properly aligned along surface edges and have a smooth or polished look to convey quality.

Common furnishings in a typical retail shop might include lamps (local lighting), displays (demo objects), a cash register (scripted vendors), card machines (kiosks to purchase in-world currency), and shopping carts (dedicated rez areas for unboxing new purchases into inventory). The placement of these functional furnishings should express professionalism by being located away from walls while at the same time not affect avatar traffic nor camera angles as prospects navigate throughout the store.