More than 200 people responded to our survey of how people use OpenSim, and the results are in — the majority of people use OpenSim for work and for creative self-expression.
The first question of the survey asked people who they were.
Around 40 percent of respondents said they used OpenSim for personal reasons. Of the rest, the single largest user group was developers and grid owners, at around 19%, followed by educators at 15%, and designers at 13%. Employees at public and private companies, non-profits, and government agencies made up another 12%, and 1% were students.
The second question asked people what they used OpenSim for.
Almost two-thirds of all OpenSim users — 58% — user OpenSim for creative self-expression. Nearly half, 48%, use it for socializing. Creating products for sale is tied for third place with roleplaying, at 35% each. Next are training and simulations, at 34%, virtual meetings at 26%, virtual walk-throughs at 23%, and professional networking at 13%.
Numbers add up to more than 100% because each respondent typically used OpenSim in several different ways.
When we broke out the numbers for personal users, however, the picture changed dramatically. There was very little use of OpenSim for training, walk-throughs, virtual meetings, or professional networking. Instead, the vast majority of people used OpenSim for creativity, at 79%. Another 60% used it for friendly socializing, and 45% used it for roleplaying and other fun activities. Surprisingly, 24% of these users also created products for sale.
Work users typically spent a bit less time on fun and games and more time on more work-related activities such as training and simulations and virtual meetings.
Educators in particular were very focused. Some 69% used OpenSim for teaching and simulations, and 42% for virtual meetings and conferences. The next most common activity was creative self-expression, at 33%.
These results may be skewed towards enterprise users because of the general editorial focus of Hypergrid Business is towards the enterprise, and it would be interesting to compare these results to surveys by other bloggers and by grid owners.
For another view of OpenSim use, check out the third annual OpenSim grid survey, conducted last November.