Book: Virtual avatars have real impact

The experiences people have in virtual worlds such as Second Life influence their behavior in real life, according to a new book. “There are consequences of spending 20 hours weekly using an avatar in...

OpenSim grids reach record high

The top 40 OpenSim grids gained a total of 1,199 new regions over the past month, for a new record total of 15,765 regions. The biggest growth was on OSGrid, the non-profit grid which...

HuzuTech releases social virtual worlds platform

Press Release: Huzutech’s Paperworld Takes Social Gaming To New Virtual Worlds HuzuVirtual is a new technology which takes social gaming and community into whole new virtual worlds. GLASGOW —  HuzuVirtual is a brand new...

Paper: Students need clear goals in virtual worlds

Virtual worlds like Second Life can successful be used for creative learning activities but only if the students understand the purpose of their activities in the virtual world, and aren’t overwhelmed by the learning...

Is social media a threat to virtual platforms?

While most of the attention within our industry has been on the 2D and 3D platforms for virtual events, I envisioned that a simpler, website-like interface may begin emerging for digital events. My post...

Survey seeks work users of virtual tech

Press Release: Virtual Edge Institute Launches Extensive Survey about Work-Related Uses of Virtual Technologies Giving away two free iPads to participants Pleasanton, CA – The Virtual Edge Institute (VEI) announced today that it is launching...

SAIC to demo OLIVE at ITEC 2011

Press Release: SAIC Showcases On-Line Interactive Virtual Environment Software Platform at ITEC 2011 Company to demonstrate virtual world technology for collaboration, simulation and training Cologne, Germany — Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) [NYSE: SAI]...

The business case for OpenSim

A reader asked me today about the OpenSim business case — are there enough users on any of the grids to make it worthwhile for a business to set up a presence there instead...

Major OpenSim upgrade adds security, meshes

OpenSim’s new 0.7.1 release supports meshes, media-on-a-prim, and adds additional security features for grid owners and content creators. The upgrade also promises increased stability and less lag. However, hypergrid teleports are not backwards compatible...

Virtway puts 3D worlds on iPads

Blue Mars has an iPhone client that allows users to change their clothes. There’s an app for Second Life and OpenSim that allows users to chat with other users. VenueGen is working on an...

Researcher tracks virtual movement

A researcher at the University of California in San Diego is seeking participants for a large-scale study of avatar movement in Second Life and OpenSim. The study involves both online questionnaires and in-world movement...

Startled Cat immersed in stories

Immersive virtual environments are helping to transform storytelling. The new technique – immersive, collaborative storytelling – can be used to expose people to the reality of living life a different way, for education and...

Why Teleplace went open source

Earlier this week, Teleplace announced that it was releasing the current version of proprietary virtual world software to the open source community as OpenQwaq. The next generation of its software won’t be commercially available...

Teleplace Connect to have web viewer

One thing that might keep Teleplace customers from scampering away to its newly open-sourced, free OpenQwaq alternative is the promise of Teleplace Connect — a new version of the Teleplace software with better Sharepoint...

ProtonMedia, Sify partner for virtual training

Press release: ProtonMedia and Sify Sign Technology and Services Agreement Partnership to deliver next-gen virtual learning and training solutions to global life sciences companies LANSDALE, Pa.-ProtonMedia and Sify Software Limited today announced a new...

Mobile revolution arrives for virtual events

In the early days of virtual events (i.e. a few years ago), we used to say that users could attend a virtual event “from anywhere.” Of course, that wasn’t entirely true, as “anywhere” usually...

Teleplace open sources OpenQwaq

Press Release: Teleplace Announces the OpenQwaq Open Source Project for Virtual Workspaces REDWOOD CITY, Calif.– Teleplace, the leading provider of virtual workspaces, today announced a new open source project called OpenQwaq. The OpenQwaq project will...

10 keys to a successful training presentation

There are several different components to consider in designing and developing interactive 3D software that will ensure that your training simulation will get the results you want. These components aren’t random in design and...

Survey: Virtual events now the norm

Press Release: Annual Unisfair Survey Shows Virtual and Hybrid Events are the New Normal in Marketing, Training and Collaboration 550 Marketers Weigh in on Why and How They Use Virtual Environments Key findings: 60%...

VastPark teams with Lockbox for virtual security

Press Release: Lockbox and VastPark Announce Strategic Alliance SAN JOSE, CA — Lockbox and VastPark today announced the formation of a strategic partnership that would use each company’s complementary strengths and expertise to create the...

Utherverse hosts virtual Royal Wedding

Press Release: Utherverse Hosts and Provides a Once-in-a-Lifetime Chance to Virtually Participate in and Attend the Royal Wedding Over its 50,000 Site Virtual World Web (VWW) Network Open Event Provides PC and Mac Users...

Realism key to 3D training and virtual instructors

The world of computer or web-based training has evolved rapidly over the last several years. In particular, a large amount of interest has surrounded the world of interactive 3D simulation training and the several...

The virtual is magic

I know the iPad is supposed to be magical. But, to me, it doesn’t come close to the magic I feel inside Second Life and OpenSim worlds. When I’m on a grid, I can...

At the Second Life tipping point

Second Life is a tipping point, and has been precariously balanced there for months. Average daily concurrency has been slipping since the start of 2010, according to data from Metaverse Business. In fact, according...

Meta7 to shut down, citing trademark issues

Magne Metaverse Research LLC, the parent company behind the Meta7 grid, announced on Thursday that it will be shutting down by the end of the month as a result of trandmark-related legal issues. Today,...

Outage underscores the need for backups

Ten Kitely users lost 13 regions this week because of a bug in the company’s software. The bug has been fixed, users compensated for their losses, and a new automated backup system is in...

NSF grants $297,929 to virtual worlds researchers

Press Release: IU shares $297,929 NSF grant to study use of 3D virtual worlds by business and education enterprises BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — The National Science Foundation has awarded $297,929 to a multi-disciplinary team from...

New UK grid offers gambling, $20 sims

A new U.K.-based grid, Tescos, is marketing itself as a gambling destination, with an added bonus of low-cost regions. It’s not the first grid to have gambling in-world — Avination has a number of...

RealXtend Association formed

The developers behind the realXtend branch of the OpenSimulator virtual world platform announced the formation of the realXtend Association today. “The purpose of the association is to be a place for realXtend users and...

Utherverse launches virtual learning platform

Press Release: UtherAcademy Now Recruiting Instructors & Students for 3D Web Classes Revolutionary Virtual Learning Center Lets World Be Your Classroom Vancouver, BC –  Imagine being in your kitchen with your laptop, learning how...

Blue Mars names new CEO

Press Release: Henk Rogers named CEO of Avatar Reality, Inc. Entrepreneur and Interactive Entertainment Visionary Expands Role at 3D Virtual World Company HONOLULU, HI — Avatar Reality, developers of the Blue Mars 3D virtual world and...

Designers offer OpenSim goods on Websites

With the recent growth of OpenSim grids, both public and private, and growing demand for both low-end starter items and high-end content, content creators have recently launched several Websites to distribute both free and...

Clouds help propel OpenSim growth

The top 40 public OpenSim grids gained more than a 1,000 new regions since this time last month, propelled partly by low-cost cloud-based regions from a new hosting provider, Kitely. There are now a...

HP rolls out virtual banking with Avaya’s Web.alive

Press Release: HP and Avaya Address Banks’ Need to Place Customers at the Center of Service Innovation Virtual Branch and Contact Centers Increase Effectiveness with Enhanced Channel and New Assisted Self-Service Technology NEW YORK...

Digitell Releases New Hybrid Meeting Tool Kit

Press Release: Digitell Releases New Hybrid Meeting Tool Kit Jamestown, NY — Virtual conference vendor Digitell has just released a free hybrid meeting tool kit to assist those organizations in deciding whether to turn their...

UCF students learn accounting virtually

Press Release: The University of Central Florida Deploys Virtual Training for Accountancy Tools Birmingham, UK — The University of Central Florida (UCF), commissioned Daden Limited (Daden) to develop several accountancy orientation exercises in Second Life on UCF’s...

UBM Studios add mobile support

UBM Studios Offers Mobile Support on iOS and Android-Based Tablets for Virtual Events Chicago, IL – Today, UBM Studios announced it now offers support on iOS and Android-based tablet devices including: Video delivery through...

The Machinimist Marketer: A virtual gold rush

Machinima, once banished to the realm of the basement dwelling geek, is now being let out of the closet and into the company of professional society. No longer relegated to fanboys, the cinematic art...

19 Definitions of a Virtual Event

Technology improvements have allowed us to meet, connect and engage online. The 2008 financial crisis further drove the adoption of virtual events for organizations. But even to this day, there is no standard definition...

Does Linden Lab put its economy first?

The evolution of the Linden Dollar from a strictly virtual currency and economy to a currency that intertwines with recognized currencies and economies has created many issues that need to be addressed in order...

US Air Force Academy launches virtual campus tour

Press Release: Designing Digitally, Inc. Partners with the United States Air Force Academy to Develop a Browser Based 3D Virtual Campus Tour Based on Unity Virtual world developer Designing Digitally, Inc. used the Unity...

How virtual worlds will converge

Today, we are seeing an explosion in virtual world platforms. We’ve got various — and incompatible — open source projects, including OpenSim, Open Wonderland, Open Cobalt, Sirikata, and Vastpark. We’ve got stand-alone proprietary software...

InXpo’s VX takes virtual events mobile

Press release: VX Platform Combines Industry Leading Scalability, Reliability and Security with new User Interface, Making Virtual Event Production Easier than Ever CHICAGO — INXPO announces the General Availability of INXPO VX Platform. The...

ProtonMedia to develop virtual clinical trial training

Press Release: ProtonMedia and PPD to Introduce New Virtual Clinical Trial Training Solution LANSDALE, Pa., and WILMINGTON, N.C.—ProtonMedia and PPD, Inc. today announced they have entered into an agreement to jointly develop a new...

PioneerX supports clouds, open to Facebook

Kitely may be turning the OpenSim hosting model upside down with its metered pricing, but other OpenSim hosting providers have already embraced the cloud. “We already utilise cloud based resources to allow for dynamic...

New grid to compete with higher prices

Update: AvWorlds abandons high-price strategy At a time when most OpenSim hosting providers are attempting to attract users with low prices, or, at least, moderate prices, one  OpenSim grid — AvWorlds — plans to buck...

When do cloud-based sims make sense?

With Kitely‘s bill-per-minute, cloud-based OpenSim hosting service now available, non-technically inclined folks now have a real choice in what kind of hosting they’d like to have. Here is a breakdown of common use cases...

Tipodean’s Web viewer now in public beta

San Francisco-based Tipodean Technologies launched a public beta today of its BuiltBuy.me Web-based viewer for OpenSim and Second Life. The viewer, formerly known as Canvas, is free, and can be embedded inside a Website,...

Proprietary code is good for OpenSim

A lot of debate about open source code versus proprietary code these days centers on the personalities of the folks involved, or on the politics behind the idea of open source. But, from a...

Dress for virtual success

Back when I was fresh out of college, in my first reporting gig, I learned that context matters a lot in getting folks to talk to you. At the start, a typical conversation would...

Unity 3D training simulations get recognition

CliniSpace took first place yesterday in the AI-assisted training category of the Federal Virtual Worlds Challenge with its virtual medical training simulation. Los Altos Hills, CA-based Innovation in Learning, Inc. launched CliniSpace in September of 2010,...

UBM Studios adds new chat tools

Press Release: UBM Studios Introduces New Evolution of Virtual Environments’ Chat Tool Chicago – UBM Studios continues to follow on its mission of transforming the way show organizers and event attendees interact through world-class...

Avination residents welcome Vivox voice

Avination grid owner Melanie Thiekler rolled out Vivox voice to her grid today — at no extra cost to residents or land renters. Residents immediately began trying it out, and it sounded great. Those...

Is the username dying?

What would happen if at a school’s talent show some parents stood up and started heckling the child playing the piano or dancing in front of them? “You’re awful!” or “You call yourself a...

InWorldz develops own scripting engine

InWorldz has taken a further step way from mainline OpenSim Tuesday with the announcement of a proprietary scripting engine, called Phlox, which is expected to enter beta testing this week. The new scripting engine...

Why PioneerX matters

Yesterday, I posted a story (yes, a little on the long side) about a new services from PioneerX Estates where they manage your whole grid for you. Everything — estates, land rentals, voice —...

PioneerX offers no-fuss grid management

Back when 3rd Rock Grid first launched in the spring of 2008, it was one of the earliest OpenSim grids and the owners had to figure out everything on their own. The grid’s managers...

Beware vendors bearing gifts

Resellers of open source software survive by making life easier for their customers. For example, Website hosting providers handle the setup, backups, updates, load balancing and server management for you. Yes, you could run...

SAIC demos OLIVE at Defense GameTech

Press release: SAIC Demonstrates OLIVE Virtual World Solutions at the 2011 Defense GameTech User Conference ORLANDO — Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) will feature advanced virtual defense, medical simulation, and collaboration solutions at the...

The Many Advantages of Virtual Collaboration

The results of this Harvard Business School study, and many others like it, provide ample and compelling evidence to suggest that virtual collaboration is a powerful means of achieving new levels of efficiency and effectiveness:...

Top OpenSim grids gain regions, users

The world’s top 40 public OpenSim grids gained 424 regions and 12,746 registered users since the middle of February, a slightly slower than usual growth rate. However, we’re continuing to see growth in private...

Avination first with Vivox voice on OpenSim

OpenSim’s largest commercial grid, Avination, announced a major new milestone today — it will be offering in-world Vivox voice at no charge to its residents and region renters, as well as to customers who...

Blue Mars releases 3D app for iPhone, iPad

Press Release: Avatar Reality’s Blue Mars Mobile becomes first 3D iOS app with thousands of user generated items available for purchase App Now Available to Download for Free on App Store HONOLULU, HI —...

VenueGen hosts free talk on immersive learning

Press Release: eTraining Experts Tony O’Driscoll and Karl Kapp To Host an Intimate Talk in VenueGen on Immersive Online Learning and Collaboration Co-authors of the new book “Learning in 3D” will virtually join 40...

Paper: Virtual worlds expand uses of 3D models

Press Release: Daden releases white paper on virtual worlds and the built environment Birmingham, UK — Planners, developers, builders and architects should be looking to virtual worlds to provide a whole-life model of their project,...

Study: People open to avatars at work

Employees willing to interact with a variety of avatars — except for those that are “creepy” Employees prefer to use more formal avatars to represent themselves According to a new study from Microsoft and...

Successful virtual engagement marketing

Sometimes, people new to the concept of virtual engagement ask: “How do you market a virtual event? Is it necessary to drive attendance with email and other tools?” As experienced marketers, we know that...

InterCall buys virtual events Unisfair

Press Release: InterCall Expands Its Streaming Services Portfolio with Acquisition of Unisfair OMAHA, Neb. — InterCall, a subsidiary of West Corporation and the world’s largest conferencing and collaboration services provider, today announced the acquisition of...

How not to work for free

When aspiring freelance writers ask me for advice about how to get started, here’s what I always start out with: Don’t do anything that other people are willing to do for free. So if...

Brouchoud offers virtual architecture overview

Leading virtual architect Jon Brouchoud has created Virtual Architecture 101, a 3D exhibit on Architecture Island in Second Life — and there are some nice lessons there for anyone looking to build a virtual...

Virtual Edge Institute offers virtual events certification

Virtual Edge Institute Announces First Certification Program for Digital Events Strategist Comprehensive training program to accelerate adoption of virtual meetings, events, and conferences Pleasanton, CA –The Virtual Edge Institute today announced the first educational program to...

Aurora-Sim newest option for OpenSim servers

OpenSim grid owners now have another option for their grid server software — Aurora-Sim. This branch of OpenSim, still in “pre-alpha” stage of development, promises more security features and better vehicle physics than mainline...

Expert: Copyright bigger threat than patents to OpenSim

After ReactionGrid announced plans to patent a process for deploying and managing OpenSim earlier this month, the open source community responded with dismay. In comments on the initial announcement, and in ReactionGrid’s follow-up clarification, and...

NewWorldGrid to cut self-hosted regions

The non-profit NewWorldGrid will stop allowing self-hosted regions to connect as soon as the grid completes its upgrade to the latest version of OpenSim. “We are currently starting tests on the current OpenSim development...

Hypergrid currency exchange adds Avination’s C$

Austria-based VirWoX began trading Avination’s C$ virtual currency today. VirWoX is best known as a leading exchange for Lindens in Europe, and for its hypergrid-enabled OMC currency. “Given the strong growth of Avination and...

Watson On Jeopardy: One small step for AI

They say it’s not the winning that counts but the taking part. Watson managed to do both — but perhaps the winning actually counted for less. All the indications are that Watson’s win was as much...

ScienceGrid back on hypergrid

The non-profit, research-focused ScienceSim grid is now accessible via hypergrid teleports again, after more than a year of no hypergrid connectivity. ScienceSim turned off the hypergrid last January, due to security concerns. But new...

Radiology education goes 3D

Press release: ARRS Introduces a 3D Option for CME Education The American Roentgen Ray Society (ARRS) is taking a leadership role within their industry by offering their attendees the ability to attend their educational...

Vivox voice provider doubles users in 2010

Press release: Vivox Doubles Online Voice Chat User Base in 2010, Now Serves Over 45 Million Significant Online Audience Firmly Establishes Company as the Leader in Voice Services for the Social Web NATICK, Mass.–Vivox,...

OpenSim grids embrace copyright protection

Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve been surveying the owners of all the public OpenSim grids about what their grids are all about. We asked about hypergrid, currencies, maturity levels — and intellectual...

Avination explodes; OSGrid sweeps clean

The number of regions of the 40 largest OpenSim grids went down this month for the first time since July, from 15,623 to 13,069, a loss of over 2,300 regions, a result of a...

ProtoSphere adds ComplianceWire integration

Press release: ProtonMedia’s ProtoSphere Now Integrated with Kaplan EduNeering’s ComplianceWire LANSDALE, Pa.—ProtonMedia and Kaplan EduNeering have integrated their technologies to create a new way for life sciences organizations to meet regulatory and compliance regulations. The...