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Shine, or reflection, determines how strongly the current sky texture (and water, if the prim is over water) is blended onto the faces of the prim. This effect is also known as environmental texture mapping.

Depending on your interpretation of quantum physics, there may exist some alternate universe where it is computationally feasible to make this option actually make the faces of a prim reflect the world around them like a mirror, but due to the design of SL's 3D engine and the constraints of current computing technology, it is not possible in this this time. Real-time 3D rendering technology is rapidly advancing...

The shininess of a prim can be controlled with llSetPrimitiveParams.

Enabling reflection will cause the prim/side to darken more with each reflection setting (low, medium, high).

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