Emerald Reassessment

This post is one I have needed to make a long time ago. This is totally in my eyes, my personal perception, as very few things were ever written down.

Emerald is no longer what It was for me, I have been dedicating a ridiculous amount of my time to this project for near two years now, and It’s been difficult to see it go the way it has.

It started off as a joint effort to bring talented people together to make something that people could really appreciate it, something that I could work on and give as a gift to my friends. All sorts of people have worked on it over the time, some people whom I trusted and respected, and some that I took things as they came. The similar thing was that it appeared that we were all working to be productive and helpful, to make an amazing viewer. Trust was never a critical point in the project, as everything that was done was transparent to everyone. Every code change was easily viewable by everyone, including the public, so there was really no issue with worrying about someone adding something nasty. Back when there were questions of the viewers integrity, I personally put my support behind it, promising that I would double and triple check code commits as much as I could to ensure that everyone was secure.

Unfortunately, I do not feel confident enough to support it any more, for a number of reasons. I did not realize at the time that emkdu was added, that it could be used to add in code I was not able to see. These things were done behind my back, it was found out by others that code was placed in that braodcasted your viewers title bar and executable path in a obfuscated manner. This was addressed, promised to be fixed, and (luckily) people broke through the now encrypted layer to find out that it was not.  Of-course, it has been promised to be fixed a third time, but now with an encryption level too high to be broken.  Although replacing or deleting emkdu would resolve this issue, I also have to consider that this was hidden in the code for months without anyone knowing..

Regardless of the intentions of those who placed this code there, It has made one thing inescapably clear. I am not able to double check everything any more. I tried to find a solution to resolve this matter, but it appears that most people do not care about this to the level that I do. I made sure the other emerald devs were aware of what is going on via this.   As mentioned there, closed source, hidden designs and single developer licenses have no place in emerald.  People can make mistakes, but it is important that others can double check without having to break through encryption.  Nothing has changed however. This issue of being able to transparently check up on everyone is only to get worse in my opinion, as all new builds are planned to be done from a central build server, where access is cut off from the other developers.  I consider trust issues with any binary of the highest importance, as even small library like this can have access to every file or memory on the computer, the same care must be taken with them as everything else.

Furthermore, there has been a issue with money, donations, advertisement profit, that has not been resolved how I felt that it should. Instead of the money being treated as a group project, and used appropriately (transparently to the other devs), it has been handled privately instead.

Additionally there has been some playful talk by a few developers to add services to emerald that would be used to profit certain developers. I have always felt that emerald should be a free project, both speech and beer, and that adding ways to make money off others free work was wrong in some way. Though, this is my personal opinion, and it is most defiantly not part of the GPL.

There have also been issues with public appearance and ignorant association. Although most intelligent people understand that the people who work on emerald do so separately, and that for the most part it is the only thing they work on together, this is not always clear, and there have been numerous times when I have had to fight to make it clear who participates in what, even on our own website. Before hand I could point out that what other devs have/are/will do is unrelated to me, but now even emerald now is moving in the direction they want it, to the extent that I feel it is important to distinguish myself from it.

I have had a few people ask me why I did not do something about this, something sooner, and the reason is that this is not my project more than it is all of the other developers, in my opinion. I have done my part to make sure that they are aware of this, but their decisions are their own.  I would have said something sooner, but I was trying my hardest to get this resolved internally.

This seems to have mostly been a misunderstanding on my part. I had assumed emerald was what I wanted it to be, when now it is very clear that it is not on a number of issues. Therefore I feel that it is my responsibility to make a few points clear from now on.

  • Emerald is beyond my ability to verify the integrity of the code involved.  For people concerned about spy-ware, adware, backdoors, etc, I strongly encore you to do your own research, as you should with every program you install, and make this decision yourself.  I am aware of two instances of what I consider bad code in emkdu, and have given instructions on how to remove this part from emerald, however in the future even that will not be enough.  A decent solution is to compile the viewer yourself, and only include components that you trust.
  • The money made by emerald has not, and will not ever go to me.  It has always been important to me that my work has been completely for free on this project.
  • The actions behind emerald, and other developers other projects, and any implied moral implications have nothing to do with me.  I personally disagree with the points in emerald that I have mentioned here, and for projects that I am unrelated in (like onyx, cds) I don’t have anything to do with them!

Furthermore, as you can probably guess, my involvement in emerald will be much less in the future, unless something is done to address these issues.  I would still love to help people as I always have with emerald support, and I will still be adding any features I think would help people out to emerald (though i think a good patch for other viewers will also be provided), but as far as the direction emerald is going, I am out of it.

It is very distressful to have to sever some ties to a project I have put so much dedication and time behind.. it has postponed this decision for a long while, but there is a time for everything, and I think I can find new ways to be productive better than working on emerald.

To the people who have took my word on emerald’s credibility, I apologize deeply for my claims.

It’s been fun, I have learned allot from people who code better than I probably ever will be able to, and there are times when it has been great, thank you very much to all the other developers, and supporters. I hope you understand.

(edit: no, i really don’t feel like forking or doing my own builds or taking anyone’s money to do so, im quite sick of emerald right now, if one were to do so, the code you can see in the svn is clean last i checked, the rest, i don’t know)

(edit: for the people who believe that I am doing this to cause drama, or that I am trying to destroy emerald, please reconsider.  This post was made to clear my conscience and bring the truth as best as I saw it to people who were relying on me.   I wish no harm on anyone, I am sorry that things came to this, but it was all stuff I could have fixed long ago, I do not hate anyone.  Please beware of people misquoting me or adding on to what I have said here, I have made this long an thorough for a reason, I do not need drama people corrupting it)

(edit: to be extremely clear, most devs in emerald do not have anything to do with emkdu.  The code was for a single developer, and it was passed around to no more than 3 devs that I am aware of, the rest of them are all in a similar boat as me afaik)

(edit: so apparently someone got my access removed from the svn and a few other things for posting this, sorry to the people who have pointed out the few last minute things I should have fixed, looks like they will have to wait)

(edit: to the other developers who feel like I have betrayed you and was foolish by making this public, I am very affected and would please ask you to consider my position.  I have tried every way I know of to get this resolved before hand, but I have been left in a position where I have people relying on my public words on this, keeping this to myself or trying to whisper it to all of them would have been betraying the rest of these people, and there wasn’t any other way to correct this)

115 Comments

  1. hmm.. quite an interesting post to read for sure.. thank you for sharing this information..

  2. Thank you Greg, for all your hard work and honesty.

    • I agree completely……………..he’s worked hard, has aided me inworld too…….I believe in greg……….im sorry this has turned sour for you Greg. I dont know what to do about Emerald now……..;o(

  3. Any way to go back to the last source code that was fully readable (and therefore trustworthy), then add back all the “in the clear code” which has been added since, thereby circumventing the suspect code, then forking to a new Emerald based viewer from there? Of is that just too weird?

    • To do it right, you would need to be able to view all the code in the viewer. Therefore, it is safe to say that the public svn , including the beta, is clean. Precompiled librarys and binarys would need to be verified to be coming from a source that isn’t adding anything to it.

      • Glad to see you decided to fork the program anyhow and thanks for your efforts on our behalf with your EMERGENCE viewer. :-)

        With the need to be in about 3 places at once that such a project brings, perhaps you should take on a teammate.

        How about Chalice Yao?

      • i dont really plan on developing it, as said. Chal rocks, but I think is preoccupied.

    • Thanks for the reply edit Greg. I understand your dismay and your reluctance to be involved any more. Just had to ask though. Inquiring minds want to know! lol Thanks much for your efforts up to this point and good luck in whatever future endeavor you undertake.

  4. Sorry to hear all that. Even though emerald is and will hopefully stay the state-of-the-art-viewer for sl i do understand the problems related to a crowd of independent developers.
    This Project is to big for a single developer to just check and asure its integrity.
    Even though i understand and appreciate the idea behind it being free to use as well as the problem of licenses, would it be a possible to change it to a commercial patch for the standard sl viewer? This way it would not include public code and would be more like a plugin which could be sold under commercial license. That would resolve all issues related to its being an open source project even if the source is beeing kept open still.
    I think its not only me who would gladly pay a license fee to keep this great viewer alive the way it used to be. …and finally i got to say, that for me emerald wll always be related to lgg. No matter how this story continues, thank you for all that great work, all the help and for the honesty to share even this issue now.

    • Well, it never really have much to do with how large the project was, svn makes it really easy to check out only the stuff that changed. It’s just when stuff is specifically hidden for months, and happens to contain bad stuff… then it gets promised to be fixed.. turns out to have bad stuff still, just encrypted instead of obfuscated.. or basically, its the stuff that CAN’T be checked, that is a issue, and should never have been included.
      I think you misunderstood my part about the paid services… I know many ways where this could be legally done, it just feels wrong to me. Emerald has never been about making money, and to see so many people wanting to take it in that direction, really points out to me where what I feel is the project I want to be apart of (a free one, just pure honest to goodness free) , isn’t how emerald feels.
      I appreciate that you would be willing to pay for all the work that has been done, but I feel like that would take away from the true meaning behind why the work was done in the first place, even corrupt it in my opinion. Especially when you consider that certain devs would be profiting off of the popularity in emerald created by some coders who did it for free. Kinda reminds me of the concept of selling freebies. It’s legal, but its not good.

      • i definitly do understand the way you feel about it. it was just that i know about the difference of free developers working on a project together and payed developers working with fixed guidelines.
        but you are right, this way to assure the code is what it is supposed to be would kill the idea behind the project.
        like what you said about freebies, either i get something for free and use it as is without any expectations, or i buy something and expect service and support to be able to use it the way i payed for, selling freebies might be legal but is in no way correct. usually people that do that not only sell other peoples work but are not able to support it in any way.
        emerald always had a great support and from that point of view its maybe even better than i would expect from a commercial product.
        anyway, this was just an idea and i know you would not like it ;-)
        being a developer myself i know what you are talking about.
        i’ve been through all this myself before and i really honor your idealism :-)

  5. I may well be wrong but as I see it, once this news is broadcast to the wider public, and you may be sure that other interested parties (developers of other viewers for example) will pick up on it to denigrate Emerald.

    Surely then, with people leaving like rats from a sinking ship, Emerald will lose all credibility and the current developers will be left with an empty project? Maybe then something will get done to address this weakness in the code and make it safe again?

    I know nothing about coding but I am going to stick with it for the time being and keep a close watch on any further reports. I cannot envisage now, after so long, being in SL without the wonderful features in Emerald.

    I echo other posters gratitude to LGG for all his hard work, support and openness.

  6. Thanks LGG for all your forward thinking creativity, and the generous time you’ve spent fine tuning it all.

    All I can do is shake my head when I hear about how someone(s) would exploit honest open global sharing….with selfish deceitful behavior.

    Such a shame…..such heavy karma to have to work thru too.

    Many blessings for colorful seas(sees) LGG.

  7. You’re still the best white-hat developer LGG. Holding onto your integrity is a commendable thing. With your ethic and skill-set, I’m sure that you’ll find something, SL-related or not, to put your effort, time, and mind to– helping out in the spirit that you wish to do your work in.

    • A decent white hat wouldn’t have made the same mistakes I did ;)
      but yeah, ill figure something out. Thanks for the support.

  8. Thanks for using my icon that one time when I gave you my icons! I was proud that day :)

    Also, thanks for emerald and all.

  9. What sad news. Thank you so much for all you’ve done with Emerald and everything else.

  10. Although it must feel bad, you’re not the one with the problem. All he reasons why you’ve felt conflict over this and other related issues are a strength and an asset. Perhaps the greatest viewer contribution you can make is integrity, and you’ve just shown that.

    You’ve done fantastic work. If later on you still want to work on a viewer, perhaps you can find a few like minded people and simply host a forked version named something else, replace the closed-source piece with either stock llkdu or use openjpeg instead. Work transparently using distributed version control like hg, without hidden secret undocumented / intentionally obscured commits. Remove or replace binary library downloads from sources that have proved themselves over and over to be ethically challenged.

  11. Thank you Greg to put out this informations. I feel sorry you have to go this way, but its understandable as I have done the same thing to an inworld projekt.
    For the moment this is still no reason to change the viewer. But in case it goes commercial ways for “special” people I can see alot people using different 3rdparty systems.

    best wishes in the future and I guess I will contact you one or the other day :-)

    • “For the moment this is still no reason to change the viewer”.

      I think this is something people will have to decide for themselves. For me, the lack of transparency and the continual and ongoing breaches of trust are a powerful and reasonable justification to stop using the binary builds generated by the current Emerald build team.

      Perhaps someone with more credibility will repackage the viewer source under a more transparent process.

  12. Better to be honest and forthright, to bad more people can’t seem to figure out what that pesky “H” word means.

    • Unfortunately, it seems it begins to get muddy when you distinguish being honest in private, or honest publicly.
      Being honest publicly means that if you are saying anything important, there is a good chance that people will misunderstand you, claim you mean something else, and cause innocent people lots of hell. I really hope people take the time to read exactly what I said and why I said it, and not someone elses spin.. I have a bad feeling its going to happen despite that though :(

  13. Well rats. I’ll miss the radar.

  14. [...] [...]

  15. Greg, you’re a great guy.

  16. Well, the radar, the fact stuff rezzed faster, the fact I can load different avatars from a drop down list, The double click teleport, extra set of attachment points.
    All this plus the fact the screwheads @ LL didn’t like Emerald.

    Who’s to say LL doesn’t do this sorAAACK! thump

  17. It’s obviously not the end of Emerald but just a developer leaving who felt out of the loop and left behind. I haven’t seen any contributions by you lately except being overly obsessed with user privacy and jumping to wrong conclusions.

    • It has been difficult lately to pull myself together and work on code while the situations have been as I have mentioned for so long, the contributions have still been there, I believe the most resent feature you would see is the auto-correction code, as viewer support is something really only individuals can see.
      I am very concerned with privacy, but if you have seen any wrong decisions I have made, I would love to see your case. I am no where close to perfect, but my decisions are based off a large amount of evidence or reasoning, where have you seen otherwise?

    • You state that LGG is “being overly obsessed with user privacy”… One can never be overly concerned with user privacy. This has to be of prime importance. It is this type of attitude that erodes our privacy, giving rise to identity theft.

    • I guess for some people, user privacy isn’t important. *toinks* O_o

  18. [...] when Greg up and publishes his own misgivings about Emerald, I admit I sit up and take [...]

  19. Greg, I understand completely and I personally relate.

  20. Thanks for the job you have done on the very unseful Emerald client, and the elegant manneer you have to tell us why you have to retire from it.
    I hope it will help the Emerald team to see that some points are important, especially transparency regarding the code and donation money use.

  21. Many thanks for your insight and advice Greg.
    I understand your sadness, it was a great project, and your involvement and efforts promoting openess and accountability was a large part of its success.
    All the best for your next project.

  22. I’m glad you decided to speak up about it, LGG, even if it wasn’t easy. Are you going to continue working on SL in any capacity? You said you might go back to working on proxies instead, have you decided yet?

  23. Thanks for this. I had heard different things, and you never know what to believe unfortunately. I’m glad you have helped clear this up. I wish there was some way I could delete all of my information from their database.. is there by chance? Just going out on a limb here. Being honest takes guts, especially if you’re going to get a lot of slack for it. I bet a huge weight has lifted off of your shoulders, and much kudos to you for being a man and doing what you believe in.

    • it is worth asking some of the other devs who still have access if you feel like it will help anything. It doesn’t feel like any weight has been lifted, instead I just feel exiled and pressed against even more.

  24. lgg++

  25. is it possible this encrypted code was mandated by linden labs themselves?

    • anything is possible, but based on all evidence and suspicions i have ever had. No.

    • If Linden Labs would have mandated this then the developers who placed it in should have noted that to other developers.

      On a side note apparently you can delete emkdu.dll from the Emerald folder and Emerald will still operate (I’ve not found any crash issues yet), however it does cause all your settings to completely reset…

      • Okay the settings reset seems to perhaps be coincidental, if oddly, after another restart all the settings were fine again o.O

      • instructions for removing emkdu were given in a previous blog entry, it should work fine without touching any of your settings; however as I mentioned, this really is not an adequate fix.

      • I suppose not an adequate one no, but since most concerns seem to be about it…

        I admit I’m rather amused at the absolute arrogance and ignorance of whoever “arabellasteadham” is on the emerald team, as they decided to call you a “Minor Ex-Dev”, which is almost flooring considering myself and many people I know actually used to think you were the founder/main dev of emerald. Honestly by pulling your access and now making a comment like that, they’ve more or less shot their credibility even further away.

        Every decent developer they had, is pretty much gone now, you, zwag, kat, etc, their attempts to downplay is seriously seriously like just bad arrogance.

      • “If Linden Labs would have mandated this then the developers who placed it in should have noted that to other developers.”

        They DID mention it, greg is just being a paranoid furry.

  26. Hi :)
    Ive just read those lines and Im kind scared… I mean, Im not a developer.., I dont know anything about programming.. Im just a user.. so.. my point is: Should I still use Emerald? is it trustfull? should I leave it and turn to the official SL Viewer?

    • No, I used to be a big supporter of Emerald, and LGG helped to give me that faith to trust them. But they have (now) repeatedly shown they can’t be trusted, and go to great lengths to hide their deception and breach of trust to the user.

      Log in one more time with Emerald, detach the LSL bridge, log out, and uninstall Emerald. You don’t need to go back to an official viewer, there are other organizations with developers who believe in open, accountable viewers. My suggestions, try Imprudence.

  27. [...] those fell to nothing in one simple blog post that sucked the life and pleasure out of me. It was a blog post made by LordGregGreg Back, late of the Emerald Development [...]

  28. disappointed to read this and i’m uninstalling emerald from my computer. i can’t use something i can’t trust. thank you for letting us know what’s going on.

  29. LLG, the best to you. I had been wondering how much longer till it came to this.

    Speaking of emkdu, I have a specific crash that happens when emerald attempts to load it at run. llkdu loads but crashes during loging. Been able to reproduce this on every comp I have.
    I haven’t tested emerald in a while cause I haven’t had the time to review the source. 2439 was the first in a very long time that I had run without doing so and kdu linked crashes was a bit disconcerting considering the closed nature of emkdu and knowing before hand that it was including client info in bakes.

  30. I greatly appreciate the honesty and bravery it has taken you to speak up. I hope that your next project remains exactly what you wish it to be. Or is at least with other honest and like minded folk. Well… at least those that share your same thoughts on transparencies. Well wishes,
    Ayameko Kabila
    Creations by Aya
    Second Life- Location Ancient Inspiratons

  31. [...] topic in SLUniverse only quoted a portion of what LGG posted on his own blog post titled “Emerald Reassessment” but the message is quite clear and that message is “beware of the current Emerald [...]

  32. [...] that so much has occurred in the last few days, with LordGregGreg’s public announcement titled “Emerald Reassessment” arriving complete with proof that code is or was being utilized that shouldn’t be in that [...]

  33. as you might need to think about, when everyone… everyone gets a new emerald release and everybody uses the new one and the binary version is manipulated there will be just one trigger needed to transver all L$ to an account. biggest scam ever. and epic win. for the one who made it. Since emerald got these backdoors and they been in the past already grifferes like Jcool…

    • What backdoors exactly are you talking about?

  34. If I hadn’t removed Emerald from my computer already, I would have removed it now after reading this blog post. I use Imprudence now. It has majority of the Emerald features and alot more stable and faster.

  35. Thanks for all the hard work and the time you invested! I hope you will be around and not jump off to another grid etc.

  36. Forgive my ignorance, but what exactly is emkdu and why is this such a huge issue?

    • please take the time to read this. This is not a issue with emkdu exactly, the issue with emkdu is what made me realize that it was important to correct myself.

  37. [...] we have LordGregGreg (Emerald Reassessment) charging that there is code in the emkdu.dll that should not be there. When one looks back through [...]

  38. [...] announced his departure from the Emerald viewer developer team, saying that he is unable to track code added by other [...]

  39. and what a pity that they’ve suckered qarl into their plots in no doubt an attempt to save face… hope he realizes the risks here and gets out while he can.

    • Smells like propaganda!!!

  40. Are there any safe viewers that can be recommended?

    If Emerald Devs wish to hide some of their code, then there is no way to know you are safe. They have the right to hide their code. We have the right to distrust them since they feel the need to do so.

  41. [...] Emerald Reassessment This post is one I have needed to make a long time ago. This is totally in my eyes, my personal perception, as very few [...] [...]

  42. Sorry to hear all of this LGG. Ever since I interviewed you for my magaizne, I felt you were a person that I could trust in developing Emerald and I had your back. Pity, a few people have to ruin a good thing for many. I bet Provky is celebrating somewhere.. LOL

    • Yes, Prokofy Neva is probably rubbing his/her hands together in glee at the news.

  43. [...] LordGregGreg is on the way out, apparently partly spurred by issues within the emkdu library. [...]

  44. io Penso che Emerald sia il più bel programma che conoscp per entrare in Second Life.
    e spero che i problemi che ora sono venuti alla vista di tutti si risolvano nel modo migliore.
    Io continuerò sino a che mi è possibile a usarlo.
    Grazie per averlo inventato.

  45. TY LGG,
    i call myselve to the first Emerald users and me and my friends are really concerned about what you tell us in this blog.
    I remember i was personally suopported by LGG several times. One day as voice didnt work inworld that day we also reconnected on Skype.
    I met a person who was really caring about the users experience and also listening to suggestions.
    Personally i trust every word LGG writes here and i will hand the link to this blog on to my groups for a further discussion.
    Love & Light
    Max

  46. It is really a shame that things had to happen this way, but some of us expected it. And why they, the Emerald Teem, just come forward and tell the truth is beyond me. People are not going to leave in droves. People will still use Emerald no matter what. But to continue on with a lie like nothing has happened is silly. And their (Emerald’s) about you are the same. Please take care and I wish you well. Thanks for all that you have done and I hope you continue with something Viewer related.

  47. As a daily helper in one of the well known busy groups I can no longer recommend Emerald to our users until a formal statement is released regarding the removal of the suspect code.

    This includes a reversion to a hash verifiable LL library (since the dll codebase is non GPL therefore cannot itself be exposed).

    Knee jerk responses over why/how/what LGG did or didnt do aside, the Emerald team is under the spotlight to do someting about this issue. Ignoring it till things ‘blow over’ will mean the same vote of no confidence. They might as well say ya boo its staying, the result will be the same. Reputation == Trash.

    What good does farming PC account names in the executable path do other than to allow users to be tracked by third parties (and darker uses)? I have yet to see one positive supporting use of this ‘function’.

    Respond with positive actions while you have the chance Emerald team, the world is watching.

    • I am not sure of how they have replied publically or not, but as I mentioned above in the post, Phox has promised again that this information has been removed, however the encryption around it has also been increased.

      I hope that people realize that this is not a issue only with emkdu.. but that seems to be the easiest conclusion they make so far.

      • time to name your account names Admin
        WHY do they increase encryption when they removed it? so they have not. its just missing a DIR command like to bake in the dir list of the folder where your user settings are located. all alternative alts are then exposed.
        Now its time to geekfight with the GLP licenses stuff and hopefully at the end emerald will be blocked since its can contain viruses.
        ps: anyone execpt me tryed to decompile emerald ? it worked half way… there is more stuff than just list user name in it.
        and whats about onyx that client. WHY it is emerald with jcool god-mode circuit and these options for users like logout or force tp to me options… they did worked on 950 version of emerald.

  48. And when they start stealing the competitions code and start killing them to keep it hushed….wait they already did that in a movie once….”Anti-trust”…. just my 2 cents hehe

    Altho on the real…LGG I’m sorry to see you go. Good luck on any future endeavors :-)

  49. [...] reasons for leaving were pretty clearly stated, and have been widely reported by supporters of Emerald and snipers [...]

  50. Would someone be so kind to explain exactly what emkdu is, and the original purpose for introducing it? (any links would be great)

    Thanks.. :)

    • emkdu is a wrapper of the kakadu software, used by the viewer to read and write all images. It was originally included as a replacement to llkdu, because emerald doesn’t have the rights to distribute llkdu. (if llkdu is not present in the emerald installation, it uses the free to distribute openjpeg to deal with images, but it is slightly slower)

    • Today I snap’ed with latest Inertia 0.1.1 Beta (Naughty client by Hazim Gazov) this picture, to ANYONE who still has doubts(!):

      [IMG]http://i1039.photobucket.com/albums/a472/MsMargarine/Inertia011Radar.png[/IMG]

      Owww-kay… At this point Gazov manged to decode 2 types of encryption! Do note the incorrect encoded line, what’s in there is ANYONE’s guesse, could be your hd. serial, MAC, IP… Just anything for ANYONE to see, not intensionally though… Yup, it is SPYWARE coz ModSys’ TOS doesn’t say anything about broadcasting my system info to other residents, if they told openly it was ‘just’ my *.exe path I may have agreed…

      Greg, just remind the good ol’ days.. fixing black icons and such, (FAST fix-updates!) pls. don’t let your tallents goto waste… we all know who stood at the beginning of Emerald

      Thanks for everything, hope to see you back soonish makin’ sumthin KEWL again…

  51. Thanks for all your hard work with emerald n Par plugins mate, you will be missed dearly. & i hope you will return at some point.

  52. The key problem here is Phox. He adds people to the Gemini CDS ban list if they speak out against him and he adds his own ‘spy code’ to Emerald. He’s known as a thief and a liar. Googling Patrick Tyroler, which is Phox’s real name, will give you an indication that he’s stolen from people.

    Get rid of Phox, get rid of the so-called devs that also work on Gemini CDS and the emerald house would once again be clean. Until such a time, I’d recommend using Imprudence.

  53. OMLord…can you go back and fight for us, please? LL viewer recently ate my textures on the SOLD products, that’s destroying things people already bought from me…we do need Emerald alternative and I don’t see how to keep it if people like you do not guarantee it. So, if you CAN (technically) fight, please do it for us, from inside or, if you can, please provide us a good new viewer. I know what I am asking you: all your time, all your resources…and all I can provide you is a little moral support (IM me inworld for it whenever you feel). I do respect you for a lot of time, you were there for me in a lot of troubles I’ve second-lived. I hope you understand that what happens to Emerald is a natural evolution of any institution, the gold age eventually fades at times and people like you sometimes save the situation, sometimes…let the system suffocate and make another. That’s how the institutions behave, that’s what my sociology books say about this. This is a permanent risk, the permanent dilemma a manager has to solve: people tempted to transform it in a cheap vehicle for their interests. You are a manager there, the name that pops-up in our minds in connection with Emerald is yours. You are the leader of Emerald in the minds of many of us, the outsiders. I dedicate you the famous Al Pacino speach in Scent of a Woman: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dH4p9BQ3V9o&feature=related

  54. I have always been a huge supporter of Emerald up until the last few months. I no longer recommend Emerald to anybody like I used to not only because the trust issues but because after using Kirstens Viewer S20 I feel Emerald has fallen behind deeply on the possibilities that the new viewer allows. I wish you would team up with Kirsten so both of you could make the dream viewer, one that has Emerald features and Viewer 2 features combined, that would be great. Good Luck to you and thank you for your dedication and integrity.

  55. Took you long enough `0′

  56. I read this, and i think back to all the times ive done my fare share of recommending emerald as an alternative viewer despite some bad publicity from the past, even though the rough patches when people have caused drama to de-frame it, and i sorta’ resent it now.. Shame I’ve sorta lost trust a bit knowing that it contains code that is of this nature, it reminds me of the movie Anti Trust, just without the killing… at least of people.
    *sigh*

    • i know how you feel.

    • ugh this is how i feel too.. i’m embarassed to have defended it so much only to realize how much i’ve been lied to…

    • I was a real fanboi myself. Always saying we needed to give people the benefit of the doubt, not jump to conclusions, have faith in people, especially when there is a team of people. If there was something wrong, somebody would stand up and not allow it.

      Well thank you LGG, you have done us a great service, both in the tremendous effort you put into Emerald, and the eventual standing up for the users to set the record straight.

      And the new revelations that the installation of Emerald on MY computer was used maliciously against another web server… well I feel violated. They have betrayed our trust. It is a serious, possibly criminal act, and a total breach of trust to the Emerald user community. The YouTube audio recording of Arabella is unbelievable. I am usually a calm, forgiving guy, but for the first time in my life I actually called somebody a “twat”. Sigh. They need to remove her, name and remove the developer responsible for the iframe attack, and force the emkdu developer (Ph0x?) to open up to transparency to the user base.

      Not that it matters anymore. Not sure they can recover from both LGGs outing of the encryption as well as the new hijacking of the login page revelations and the YouTube audio recording all in one week.

      I’ve been betrayed and I am angry.

  57. So LGG, do you think Linden Labs will have to act upon the DDoS attacks that the emerald devs were knowingly doing? Or will LL also sweep this under the rug?

  58. [...] kind of hard not to when they let the trustworthy person leave and keep the one no one trusts. LGG’s post goes into much more detail about the reasons he left. It also bothers me that they are basically [...]

  59. [...] refuse to use something that i cannot trust. even if what lordgregreg’s post was about was just a butt hurt dev trying to defame (which i don’t think it is, i honestly think [...]

  60. [...] and the news that they were harvesting names, as well as the strong links to CDS. Last week, LordGregGreg published a scathing attack on some of the developers behind Emerald Viewer, suggesting that ethics were taking a back seat at [...]

  61. Well I see Emerald has been taken off the ll approved list, will emerald users now be banned from sl? and is modular systems working on a viewer that will be approved by ll?

  62. [...] track avatar alts, to the brand new DDoS proof of concept that was unleashed recently. People are dropping this viewer in droves and with very good reason. Today it was announced Fractured Crystal, the creator of the [...]

  63. “Well I see Emerald has been taken off the ll approved list”

    That is a good thing. It might be a while before it returns to the list.

  64. Don’t get it

  65. [...] scorsa Lord Greg Greg (uno dei principali programmatori di Emerald negli ultimi anni) si era ufficialmente dissociato contro alcune pratiche poco trasparenti di alcuni sviluppatori di Emerald in cui venivano [...]

  66. Thank you for writing this, LordGregGreg. Out of all the blogs I’ve seen about Emeraldgate, yours is the most mature and level-headed, seeming to grasp the full enormity of what has taken place. It’s very likely that Fractured will go to jail for this, and the police may well disband the entire Emerald project as a criminal racketeering organization. This wasn’t a shenanigan, it was a crime perpetrated on thousands of people, on purpose, with malicious intent, by the very head of the Emerald project himself.

    Fractured could have redirected that hidden iframe to ANY page he wanted, infecting machines, stealing info, or doing anything he liked. Emerald users are just lucky that Fractured’s criminal ambitions only extended as far as taking down someone he hated, rather than going out in a blaze of glory taking everyone using Emerald with him. Actually he still might do that, once he realizes that this isn’t going to go away or be laughed off as the prank of a highspirited young coder.

  67. [...] addition, last week,  (now former) Emerald developer LordGregGreg published a sharp-tongued post questioning Emerald’s integrity and the moral compass of it’s developers, citing issues such [...]

  68. One question……..Can I keep my Emerald Viewer…….I can’t stand the SL …I get lost on that one

    • your choice, but bad idea right now imho, there are other options out there.

  69. [...] this changed, however, when none other than LordGregGreg Back (LGG) went on record citing concerns about what was happening within the Emerald “team” – with people’s actions [...]

  70. Quite frankly, nothing you say here has done anything to Emerald. The Emerald developers have done everything they need to to destroy their own reputations and viewer. Given that there have been lapses in ethical behaviour, and then trying to cover it up or play it off has been their own undoing. Having ben a big supporter in the past of Emerald, I feel exceptionally deceived. Not to mention the censoring of a large part of the comments by the emerald mods of their behaviour. I would not trust the emerald viewer or team for anything anymore. I love Emergence and use it as my primary viewr now. Thank you!!!!

  71. Thanks, LGG, for making this post. I’d been away from SL for most of the past several months and came back to the news of EmeraldGate. Wow! I had heard concerns voiced before but never expected anything like that. It’s beyond disappointing and kind of heartbreaking. How could anyone (as is posted by someone above) sincerely believe that it’s possible to be “overly obsessed” with user privacy? What an odd thing to suggest, considering the topic. And also the stats re: the super-high incidence of identity theft all around the world…Really? It’s not a big deal?

    I was late to the game, as they say. ‘Friends’ had been using Emerald for ages before ever letting me know about it. I didn’t even know about alternatives until then.
    And was happy to find a good option to the regular SL viewer. Even if it took time to learn (and remember!) all the new incredible features I’d have access to.

    I’m not a techie, not by far. This means I appreciate VERY much that people like you LGG, and other sincere developers/designers/programmers actually exist. To me anyone who supports egalitarianism for Second Life users/residents by literally working, voluntarily, to make Inworld life better and easier for us is a living angel. *Thank You* for everything you’ve done to contribute.

  72. [...] died. I was building a 7Seas Custom Fishing Rod when it happened. I eventually uninstalled it when LordGregGreg Back left the Emerald Viewer development team and when Fractured Crystal used the Emerald Viewer to launch a DDoS attack against another Third [...]

  73. Us in the OpenSim World corner of things were warned long ago of Emerald, it’s really a shame when sociopaths get giddy and kill a good project.

  74. Hi Greg;
    I just wanted to throw in my 2 cents worth. I have been using your viewer for a while now and find it to be everything Emerald was and I loved that one, of course I didn’t know all the background you gave, so like a lost dumb lamb I just used it. I do hope that you are being honest and upright too. So thank you for allowing me the privillage of using you great viewer.
    Please don’t let the Lindens run you off too. They are in the middle of a virtual (pardon the pun) Strom and it’s going to get worst if the lindens don’t back down and get a little.
    Hang in there and keep thinking even better viewer thoughts.

    RoyBoy

  75. [...] Post di LordGregGreg [...]

  76. It’s been a while but I still would like to thank you for this viewer. It was a good alternative and I think it’s still better than Phoenix. He he he!

  77. [...] kind of hard not to when they let the trustworthy person leave and keep the one no one trusts. LGG’s post goes into much more detail about the reasons he left. It also bothers me that they are basically [...]


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