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Jul 2016

The TerreSculptor HMES Beta build for July 17 2016 was released today.
It is available on the HMES Beta page on the LCS website.
This beta build is functional until August 1 2016.

This is the first beta build.
The main updates in this build are the camera button interface, the mostly completed project file format, and numerous issue fixes.
The software specifications and features will freeze at this point for the first release version, which will be sometime in early August.
There will be a large price discount for the first few weeks of the release version.

The list of future software version features is quite lengthy, and software development will continue in an effort to make all of those features available.


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Mar 2016

The TerreSculptor HMES Alpha build for March 21 2016 was released today.
It is available on the HMES Alpha page on the LCS website.
This alpha build is functional until August 1 2016.

This update includes a number of changes and item completions.
Notably, the user interface Windows Theme and Dark Theme is completed for now, and a redesign of the right-side function tabs has them replaced by a vertical strip of buttons.
A future version (most likely a v1.1 or similar) will include a full dark theme with inverted colors (ie. white text on a dark background).

This alpha update also includes a number of core fixes and functionality fixes.

The main features currently being developed for the next update include: individual camera user interface control sets for each camera mode; additional areas saved to the project file, most likely Camera, Backdrop, Fog, Water, and others.


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Feb 2016

The TerreSculptor HMES Alpha build for Feb 16 2016 was released today.
It is available on the HMES Alpha page on the LCS website.

The most notable item in this build release is the ability to now open and save projects.
The application areas that are currently saved in a project file are the current state of the Generators, the Modifiers, and the base Datamap heightmap.
In the next build release, the following areas will be added to the project file open and save: the Extractors, the Scene objects (Backdrop, Grid, etc.), the Colorset, and a few other application areas.

The project file format is highly engineered to allow for full backward and forward compatibility across all versions of the software, and to allow for a future feature of being able to save or open-merge user-specified areas only.  This will allow for such abilities as merging only the Generators from an existing project file to the current project, for example.

At this point in time it is not recommended to completely rely on the alpha level project file format for any commercial projects, as any bugs found at this stage may break the project file format in a future alpha build.  By the time the software reaches beta in a few months, any project file issues should be fully exposed and resolved.

Additional features and fixes new to this build are noted in the text file included in the HMES zip file.
The main areas to note in this build are in the Extractors, the Generators, the OBJ file importer/exporter, and the Project file format.

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Jan 2016

The latest alpha build was made available just before the end of Dec 2015.
The Dec build was many months in development due to the massive number of core application changes.
Starting this January, build updates will again be released on a more frequent basis, typically every 3 to 6 weeks.
The software should be reaching beta state within the first quarter of this year.

The next build update that is to be released in a few weeks will have numerous updates to the Extractor dialogs, the Project Open and Save should be fully functional, numerous core methods have been multi-threaded, plus more bug fixes.

The Project Open and Save functions are going to support the ability to open or save various sub-systems of a TerreSculptor world.
This includes the immediate mode Noise Generators, the Modifiers, the Extractors, the Scene settings, the Terrain, and the Terrain Stack.
This feature will essentially allow merging any of these sub-systems with an existing project.


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Oct 2015

I am finally down to the last namespace that requires conversion to the floating-point pipeline.
While it has been a tremendous amount of work to convert TerreSculptor to a floating-point pipeline, the increased accuracy and the removal of the constant conversion to/from float-to-16bit on many modifiers will be a big positive.
In the future I plan to look at implementing the Intel SSE instructions, which will provide a significant performance boost to many of the floating-point modifiers.
The next Alpha build release will be a bit late but I expect it to be ready within a few weeks.

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