Author: Maria Korolov

About Maria Korolov

maria@hypergridbusiness.com'

Maria Korolov is editor and publisher of Hypergrid Business. She has been a journalist for more than twenty years and has worked for the Chicago Tribune, Reuters, and Computerworld and has reported from over a dozen countries, including Russia and China.

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Latest articles:

46

AviWorlds now accepting reservations for free regions

AviWorlds is coming back, grid owner Alexsandro Pomposelli told Hypergrid Business today. The Avi-Labs OpenSim hosting will also return, he said. “People can already order their free regions,” he said, even before the grid is...

27

November a solid month for OpenSim growth

The public OpenSim grids added 1,655 new regions this month, registered more than 10,000 new users, and grew active monthly users by 512. Meanwhile, Avination and AviWorlds are still down for the count, Logicamp suffered a...

7

Linda Kellie is back at work!

Finally, in these dark and tumultuous times, some good news — Linda Kellie is back, and creating new content. Outside of the core developers themselves, Linda Kellie is the most valuable member of the...

4

Logicamp grid falls victim to ransomware

The Belgium-based Logicamp grid has suffered a catastrophic ransomware attack, and has lost some content due to a lack of current off-line backups. “I know that it is unforgivable but I am alone to manage...

29

SkyLife, Sinful merge grids

SkyLifeGrid, launched after the most recent collapse of AviWorlds, has now merged with the Sinful Grid. However, SkyLife will continue offering hosting services, owner Josh Boam told Hypergrid Business, on the SkyLifeHosting.com website. SkyLifeGrid originally...

1

AltspaceVR offers event replays

AltspaceVR, a pioneering social virtual reality platform, announced today that it will be now offering virtual reality replays of live events. The full virtual reality environment is recorded, as well as the performances, so...

23

Facebook’s Oculus takes triple hit

There’s a battle raging now for who will be the dominant platform of the coming virtual reality metaverse. Facebook, which has been getting a big chunk of the media attention with the Oculus Rift...

53

Growth resumes on OpenSim grids

The public OpenSim grids added more than 4,000 new regions this month, registered more than 4,400 new users, and grew by 735 new active users after maintenance and other outages depressed the numbers last month. ZetaWorlds,...

0

Harleys, VR … and the AARP

Three things that you might not think go together — riding a Harley through the main drag at this year’s Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, virtual reality, and the American Association of Retired Persons. But here’s the latest sign...

2

The Simpsons gives away 25,000 VR viewers

Fox gave away 25,000 virtual reality viewers to fans of The Simpsons to celebrate the show’s 600th episode this week. They went quick. They were Google Cardboard viewers, made of cardboard, and made by...

0

Grids back up after hurricane

DigiWorldz and the Great Canadian Grid are back up after a nerve-wracking week when Hurricane Matthew threatened to cut off power to the grids’ Florida data center. “DigiWorldz is back online and no damage...

0

Report: Daydream sales to pass Rift, Vive

Customers will purchase more than 450,000 Google Daydream View headsets by the end of the year, according to SuperData Research. Samsung’s Gear VR, Daydream’s closest competitor, is estimated to sell around 2.3 million units....

47

Army reveals OpenSim’s top security risks

The U.S. Army’s Moses project is one of the most high-profile users of OpenSim, with a focus on training and simulations rather than on using OpenSim as a platform for a social grid. Last...

2

Udacity offers VR ‘nanodegree’

Udacity, an online platform for college courses, is now offering a VR development course — with no previous programming experience necessary. The class costs $199 per month, and runs for six months. Those who...

0

Proto Awards will celebrate VR experiences Oct. 8

The Proto Awards gala will be held in Hollywood on October 8, and the list of nominees has been announced. Categories include Most Transportive Experience, Best Game, Best Music Experience, Best Social Experience, Best Mobile Experience, Best Interaction Design, Most Innovative, Best...

5

AvatarFest kicks off this Friday

The community-focused AvatarFest event kicks off on Friday, accessible to all OpenSim hypergrid users. There are about two dozen exhibitors already participating, and more than a dozen performances are scheduled, including those by OpenSim...

0

Attend Harvard’s CS50 classes in VR

The first lecture of Harvard’s CS50 introductory programming class, can now be viewed as a 360-degree video. It was filmed using the professional-level Nokia OZO VR camera, which costs around $45,000. This is the first time...

0

Daydream VR platform now open to developers

Google’s Daydream virtual reality platform is now open to the public. The Daydream software development kit came out of beta, the company announced Thursday. The kit, available here for Android, has native Unity integration...

1

VWBPE17 opens call for proposals

The tenth annual Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education conference will be held March 29 through April 1 of next year — and is currently accepting proposals. Conference organizers are looking for presentations about new projects,...

0

VR ads improve brand recall 28-fold

People watching 360-degree videos recalled the brands mentioned 28 times more than in traditional ads, according to a new report by Nielsen. Recall of 360-degree content in general was eight times higher, and consumers were three...

2

NBC’s Al Roker to host VR election event

This year’s presidential election will be conducted, in part, in virtual reality. A partnership between NBC News and AltspaceVR is transforming a virtual recreation of New York’s Rockefeller Center Plaza into Democracy Plaza, where...

3

AltspaceVR zeros in on social virtual reality

The social virtual reality platform AltspaceVR is doubling down on the social aspect, with interface changes designed to make it easier for people to get together. Previously, AltspaceVR — like many virtual environments —...

33

Alife stats questioned

Alife Virtual reported a dramatic increase in active users this month, to 1,576 unique monthly visitors, but those stats may not be accurate, according to technology expert Magnuz Binder, who has previously submitted patches to OpenSim....

42

Drama, outages plague OpenSim grids

Update: I missed a couple of grids in the first version of the story, AllCity updated their stats, and I removed Alife Virtual’s stats from the report because of questions about their accuracy. Read...

0

VR Strategy Conference to focus on monetization

Press release: Greenlight Insights’ Virtual Reality Strategy Conference 2016 to Address Growth and Monetization Challenges VRS 2016 takes place Nov. 1-2, in San Francisco, and will feature new research findings from Greenlight’s fall 2016...

3

OpenSim conference calls for proposals

The 2016 OpenSimulator Community Conference, to be held in December, is now accepting proposals for presentations and activities. “We are particularly interested in speakers that can dramatically tell the story of their work and...

2

Summer’s top virtual communities

Google Plus continues to be the social media destination of choice for OpenSim users, due its usability, sharing features, and support for identities based on avatar names. I currently track 175 virtual communities that...

14

Reader poll: Most say OpenSim needs VR

Adapting OpenSim to work on virtual reality headsets will require a substantial amount of work on both server and viewer code. Is this something that OpenSim users want to see happen? According to a...

0

Vox+ Z3 a nice upgrade from the BoboVR

Disclosure: The folks at Vox VR just sent me a free review copy of their Vox+ Z3 headset, which is a rebranded version of the BoboVR Z3 but with a larger field of view. Thanks, guys!...

20

DreamWorld OpenSim installer released

OutWorldz founder Fred Beckhusen has posted his collection of 1,000 OpenSim scripts on the open source collaboration site GitHub, as well as the code for his one-click OpenSim installer, called DreamWorld. Like New World...

12

The path to a VR metaverse

I got into writing about OpenSim back in 2009 because it seemed to be, at the time, the best path to an open-source, peer-to-peer metaverse. I want to see a future where anyone could put...

0

Sony to launch multi-platform VR media service

Sony Music Entertainment will launch its Littlstar Japan VR video services next month, the company announced Wednesday. New York-based Little Star Media Inc. will provide the VR delivery platform, Sony said in the announcement. Content...

47

Kitely battles slow-loading meshes

A complex mesh object can significantly slow down the loading of a region — as much as ten minutes, in some cases, according to Oren Hurvitz, co-founder and VP of R&D at Kitely. That’s a...

11

Atek Grid has new owners, hiring staff

Atek Grid, formerly owned by the company behind the CloudServe OpenSim hosting company, has been bought by the Tampa-based Florida Web Council, Inc. CloudServe will continue to run the back-end technology for the grid...

1

Alibaba working on VR payments

China’s Alibaba online retail giant told China Daily that it is developing virtual-reality-enabled mobile payment technology, which could allow users to pay bills in a 3-D virtual world by nodding their heads or making other gestures to...

96

Avi-Labs hacked, grids down

Avi-Labs, the hosting company behind the AviWorlds grid, has been hacked, according to Josh Boam, the company’s technology manager, but grid data should be recoverable. “Everything is saved,” he said. According to Boam, company...

4

18 things that might soon be obsolete

The smartphone is able to replace a lot of the things we use to need. Alarm clocks, GPS devices, cameras, mail delivery, televisions, radios, tape recorders, record players, calculators, guitar tuners, pedometers — the...

0

OSgrid birthday bash marred by outages

OSgrid celebrated its ninth birthday this weekend, but the events did not go smoothly on OpenSim’s largest and oldest grid. OSgrid has had some technical issues over the past few days, grid president Dan...

1

Leap Motion offers hints of new VR tech

Leap Motion CTO David Holz spent more than an hour and a half last Thursday night answering questions about virtual and augmented reality in front of an audience of more than 200 avatars in...

2

Tek Gear offers free headset

Canada’s Tek Gear Inc. is offering a free virtual reality headset to anyone who wants one — as long as they pick up the shipping charges. “We’ve been in the VR business for over 24...

18

Grid outages bring stats down in July

Several grids did not report numbers this month, resulting in a drop in active users of 3,209. Avination was down this month, as were Virtual Dream, My Virtual Community, and Cyberface. Some grids, such as Activity...

0

Kitely merchants continue exports switch

The number of non-exportable items on the Kitely Market dropped this week, while exportable products continue to rise, according to statistics released today by Kitely. The difference between the two was the second highest...