The second annual Silicon Valley Virtual Reality conference is next week, and I’ll be there, representing both Women in Virtual Reality and Hypergrid Business. If any other readers are coming, I’d love to meet up with you. I’m flying in on Saturday night, and have all of Sunday open. InRead More →

Some OpenSim users have complained that closed grids — especially InWorlds, the largest closed grid of them all — do not contribute enough back to the community. Today, InWorldz co-founder and CTO David Daeschler made a strong case that InWorldz does much more than market OpenSim effectively to newcomers. (Though that,Read More →

The owners of the Next Reality and Pillars of Mist OpenSim grids have announced that the two virtual worlds are closing this month. “It pains me to have to say this, but from the 15th May 2015 The Next Reality Grid will be going offline,” said grid owner Mike Hart inRead More →

Oculus Rift virtual reality headsets will begins shipping in the first quarter of 2016, the company announced today. Pre-orders will begin later this year. “In the weeks ahead, we’ll be revealing the details around hardware, software, input, and many of our unannounced made-for-VR games and experiences coming to the Rift,”Read More →

Bright Canopy, a cloud-based replacement to SLGo, will support OpenSim from day one, according to the founders. SLGo, operated by OnLive, was discontinued at the end of April when the company was acquired by Sony. It was the only service that allowed people to log into Second Life or OpenSim with aRead More →

The Adult Metaverse community on Google Plus was against the fastest-growing OpenSim community last month, gaining 101 new members for a new total of 691 users. OpenSim Virtual was in second place, with 81 new members for a new total of 1,351. This meant that OpenSim Virtual comfortably retained its placeRead More →

Kitely‘s pricing options have long been a confusing mess for customers, with people having trouble understanding their metered billing in particular. To address this issue, Kitely first rolled out flat-rate regions back in 2012, but the various pricing options just confused customers more. It didn’t help that Kitely was theRead More →

Is there a particular kind of virtual content you need, and can’t find — and are seriously considering making yourself? For example, my time in virtual worlds is all spent working — mostly, attending business meetings, hosting shows, interviewing people. I like to wear skirts when I do this, but most skirtsRead More →

Kitely users on a flat-rate plan can now change the size of their megaregions for free via the Web interface. Those on premium plans have a fee of 150 KC, or about $0.75, to resize their megaregions. Kitely offers several flat-rate megaregion plans. For around $50 a month, customers getRead More →

One-man — and one-woman — shops are putting content in danger across the metaverse. Documentation, code, virtual content, even entire grids are at risk when it’s just one person running the project. Radegast, METAbolt and LibOpenMetaverse One of the key foundations of OpenSim is LibOpenMetaverse — originally LibSecondLife — whichRead More →

Creators have until May 15 to sign up to participate in FrancoGrid‘s second annual Fest’Avi competition. The competition is open to creators, audience, photographers, and machinimists from any grid. The content submitted to the competition will be made available to the public under a Creative Commons license. Read the full rulesRead More →

UK-based CasperTech Ltd., has stopped working on the development of the text-only METAbolt viewer, company director Casper Warden announced recently. “We have been asked to cease using the METAbolt brand with immediate effect, due to a political disagreement with the original creator,” he wrote. “With no maintainer, it appears that METAboltRead More →

I’m extremely sad that we don’t yet have a virtual reality OpenSim viewer for the iPhone. (If you’re new to this blog, check out What is OpenSim?) But that doesn’t mean that we iPhone users can’t explore virtual reality at all. I recently bought a Google Cardboard headset — one ofRead More →

The pages of this site have been loading up in the mobile style rather than the desktop view . It’s happening for everybody, and I appreciate the problem, and thank people for letting me know. So I know it’s not just me, or just one particular browser or computer setup.Read More →

An new version of the Kokua viewer was released yesterday, with updates from the Second Life and the Restrained Love viewers. There are also fixes for in-world Flash playback, upload fees, and other bugs. See the release notes for full details. According to a recent analysis of hypergrid traffic, the KokuaRead More →

It’s busy week. So busy, that I almost didn’t even notice when post number 2,000 went up — CloudServe shifts to wholesale market. Hypergrid Business first went live in March with the post The future of the Internet is coming on. Since then, we’ve averaged 32 posts per month, or a little bitRead More →

Avination, a closed commercial grid, announced a switch to a new currency yesterday, as a result of a previous theft of $126,000 from the grid. Back in the summer of 2011, crooks stole a bunch of US credit card numbers and used them to buy $126,000 worth of Avination’s C$Read More →

CloudServe, which originally launched as a low-cost OpenSim region hosting provider, has shifted to serving the wholesale market instead. Instead of selling regions to individuals, the company now focuses on serving grid owners and land resellers. “We have been for a while,” said Frank Corsi, the company’s chief technology officer. OneRead More →

There’s never been a better time to stock up on low-cost OpenSim land. Sure, you can run regions or mini-grids at home for free, but then you’re responsible for all your own tech support, backups, and upgrades — and the number of visitors is limited to what you home connectionRead More →

In a paper released today, neuroscientists from Sweden’s Karolinska Institutet have used virtual reality to find out how people feel when they think their body is invisible. “This experience affects bodily self-perception and social cognition,” the authors wrote. A person was primed to think they’re invisible by wearing a virtual reality headset,Read More →

I’ve gotten a little wary of trying new virtual reality applications because some of the best ones, graphically, do the nastiest job on my stomach. There was that one swimming-with-sharks simulations that made me seasick, that I still remember well. AltspaceVR has figured out how to put people in aRead More →

Since last September, the lowest-price regions in the metaverse were on the Great Canadian Grid. But their $5 region pricing is coming to an end. You can still get a 15,000-prim region, with no limit on visitors, for just CAD $5 — that’s around $4 in US dollars — butRead More →

One grid was not enough to hold all the drama that is AviWorlds — so now we have two. And they are at war. In one corner, there’s Alexandro Pomposelli’s AviWorlds grid, at aviworlds.us, with 61 regions and 83 active users. In the other corner, there’s Mike Hart’s AviWorlds grid,Read More →

OSgrid lost a chunk of new inventory items over the course of this past month, but the problem doesn’t affect other grids. “It appears that for the last month or so, the asset server was unable to write assets to the database,” OSgrid administrator Allen Kerensky said in yesterday’s announcement. The grid hasRead More →

There are many reasons to go into the freebie business on OpenSim: Create brand-name recognition for yourself as a designer in order to sell premium content Create brand-name recognition in order to do custom work To attract people to your grid, community, role playing group, casino, or event venue To helpRead More →

There is a new destination guide available for any hypergrid-enabled grid: Hyperica Destination Guide. To add the Hyperica Destination Guide as the default guide for your grid, simply edit your Robust.ini or Robust.HG.ini file. In the “[LoginService]” section there is a “DestinationGuide” parameter which can be used to communicate aRead More →

$15 a month for a 16,000-prim region on the hypergrid-enabled DigiWorldz grid, no setup fee. Private grid hosting also available on request.Read More →

The total number of regions and public grids in OpenSim hit new record highs this month but while more than 8,600 new users registered, the total number of active users fell by 909 to just below the 30,000 mark. For those who are new readers, OpenSim is a free, openRead More →

The Kitely Market has passed the 8,000 item milestone, with a new total of 8,300 different items, grouped into 4,116 product listings. Unlike the Second Life Marketplace, where, say, different colors of a dress would each be listed separately, Kitely Market counts these as variations of a common product listing.Read More →

The Firestorm Viewer is the most popular on the hypergrid by a wide margin, according to today’s analysis of Hyperica server logs. More than half of the last 3,600 visitors to Hyperica used the Firestorm Viewer. Less than a third used Singularity, and CtrlAltStudio, Cool LV, and Replex were all aroundRead More →

Virtual Desktop is a free Windows application that instantly makes the entire Windows operating system accessible via the Oculus Rift. Anything that you can use on your monitor, such as a word processor or a browser, you can use in virtual reality. Read a very thorough review at Road to VR.Read More →

Stray Cats — The Game opened its doors to beta testers at the start of this month. It’s an OpenSim grid dedicated to breedable cats. The owners say that users will be able to buy cats, sell them, breed them, train them, and enter them in competitions, and that thereRead More →

I’ve heard a lot of complaints about Linda Kellie while traveling the hypergrid. Okay, not about her per se — she’s probably done more for OpenSim than any other creator out there. But the fact that Linda Kellie’s content collection is licensed CC0, which is as close to public domainRead More →

For those interested in learning how to work with mesh objects, there’s a new series of Blender tutorials available online from Ontario-based retired artist Aine Caoimhe — also known as Mata Hari in-world. Blender is a free but powerful 3D modeling and animation program available for download here. It supports theRead More →

Merrie Schonbach’s new grid’s business model is a mystery. Literally a mystery — Pillars of Mist will offer both self-paced and group murder mystery events. It is the newest example of a trend we’re seeing on the hypergrid, of focused, niche grids that don’t try to be all things to all people,Read More →

As everyone who has ever tried to set up a hyperport well knows, hypergrid destinations change frequently. Regions move, grids close — staying up to date can be a nightmare. Especially if you’re doing it all by hand. To help people out, and to avoid unnecessary duplication of work, I’veRead More →

The Adult Metaverse Google Plus community continued to attract members over the past six weeks, growing by 146 members from 444 members last month to 590 members today. At the start of the year, it only had 282 members. Second Life and other Virtual Worlds saw the next-highest growth, with 130Read More →

DigiWorldz launched this week, a new filtered grid from one of the founders of 3rd Rock Grid and digital worlds hosting and consulting company Digital Worlds Group. There were more than 30 new grids in the latest Hypergrid Business monthly stats report, but DigiWorldz stands out not only in the caliberRead More →

The new official release of OpenSimulator — OpenSimulator 0.8.1 — came out this week, with only minor changes compared with the preview release. “The most significant being a fix for a regression where script state was being lost for hypergrid transfers,” core developer Justin Clark-Casey said in an announcement. Compared toRead More →

The exportable content on the Kitely Market grew ten times faster than non-exportables over the past month, continuing a trend that began late last summer. The market added 245 new exportable items, compared to 23 non-exportable ones, for a new total of 7,950 different variations of 3,898 products. A singleRead More →

This was another record-breaking month for OpenSim, with new highs in regions, users, and active users on the 323 active worlds. For those who are new readers, OpenSim is a free, open source virtual world platform that’s compatible with the Oculus Rift. It allows people with no technical skills toRead More →

Mountain Dew has produced the Dew VR Snow Experience, a live-action snowboarding virtual reality experience that takes fans on a 360 degree adventure through the Utah backcountry. The on-site experience will debut at the Burton US Open of Snowboarding in Vail, Colorado and South by Southwest in Austin, Texas and willRead More →

I don’t usually go around telling people what the best grids are. I run surveys, or I punt the question and just say, “What ever grid works best for you” or “Your own private grid” or something like that. The thing is, everybody is looking for something different. Some peopleRead More →

This week, OpenSimulator released a security fix to protect content on public grids. All public grids should either install the fix, or configure an HTTP proxy to protect important ports, said OpenSim core developer Justin Clark-Casey in the announcement. But the danger goes beyond protecting the data on grid servers, ifRead More →

Cirque du Soleil Media has partnered with Samsung to produce a live action virtual reality aerial show to be viewed on its flagship Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge smartphones in combination with the Gear VR headset. Read full article at The Hollywood Reporter.Read More →

Icelandic article Björk is making a music video for the Oculus Rift. “It’s easy to get really intimate [with virtual reality],” she said in a recent interview. “It’s almost more intimate than real life. It also has this crazy panoramic quality. I think it’s really exciting.” Read the full article atRead More →

This past week’s Game Developers Conference in San Francisco featured more female speakers than ever before, according to new analysis from Vocativ. According to the report, the number of women speakers at the conference has doubled, from 10 percent in 2011, to 20 percent this year. Read full report here.Read More →

The RobStock team have set the date for the 8th annual RobStock Charity Event for the last weekend in March, from Friday, March 27 to Sunday, March 29. “We are asking artists to give an hour of their time free, all tips going to the charity,” the organizers said in a pressRead More →

OpenSim core developer Melanie Thielker is donating a new cluster storage solution to the community. Called FSAssets, it is designed to replace the MySQL databases or the RAID storage arrays used by other grids. FSAssets is also the new asset storage for OSgrid, which had previously relied on RAID storage. Any gridRead More →

US $50 for a 20,000-prim region, hypergrid enabled, no setup fee. Free lots and other land sizes also available.Read More →

Monthly pageviews for Hypergrid Business crossed the 100,000 milestone for the first time in its six-year history, according to today’s Google Analytics report. Visitors viewed 101,371 pages in February, up from 97,036 pages in January. Both of these numbers are a significant increase over last year, when monthly pageviews typicallyRead More →

$15 per month for a 15,000-prim varregion region on the Tag Grid, no set up fee.  Can hold up to 100 avatars. Can be sized as a single standard region, a 2×2 varregion or 4×4 varregion. Grid has own online content marketplace. No hypergrid. Read More →

An open grid is one that allows outside people to connect their own regions. Those regions could be hosted for free on home computers, or be provided by third-party hosting companies, such as Dreamland Metaverse, Zetamex, CloudServe, Oliveira, or any other grid-agnostic vendor on our hosting list. Here is theRead More →

John Vechey, the cofounder of Bejeweled maker PopCap Games, has created a new startup, Pluto VR, to take advantage of the opportunity that the resurgence of virtual reality has created. Seattle-based Pluto VR will focus on the software needed to make virtual and augmented reality environments more social and connected. ReadRead More →

Inventory exports, or IARs, became a heated topic of discussion in Google Plus communities yesterday, with one grid even disabling its IAR exports temporarily as a result. Much of the debate is due to a misunderstanding of how IAR backups work — and of how thieves steal content. What isRead More →

OpenSim developer Dahlia Trimble has won a bounty for her work on fixing llLookAt, a function useful in making objects move better. “Fred Beckhusen has tested the code and is happy with the result,” said Talla Adams in an announcement today. Adams, who is the moderator of the OpenSim VirtualRead More →

OSgrid, the oldest grid running on the OpenSim software, is backup. The news was announced in a tweet a few minutes ago. “OSgrid is opening its gates to direct logins and regions at this very minute,”Melanie Thielker, founder and owner of the Avination grid and an OpenSim core developer, told Hypergrid Business. “It’sRead More →

WizDish‘s ROVR developer kit will cost £395, or about US $610, according to a report today in VRFocus. WizDish is an omni-directional treadmill similar to the $700 Virtuix Omni or the $600 Cyberith Virtualizer and is designed to allow users to walk or run while wearing virtual reality headsets. The device requires special shoes, andRead More →

Valve just announced that it will show off its own virtual reality hardware, SteamVR, at next month’s Game Developers Conference in San Francisco. Valve is the company behind Portal, Team Fortress 2 and the widely-used PC game distribution hub Steam. “At GDC 2015, we’ll be giving demos of the refined Steam Controller,Read More →

Ever since the hardware failure took down OSgrid‘s asset database last August, OSgrid residents have been worrying about whether the grid would ever recover — and, if it did, whether their inventories would be restored as well. The wondering is now over. The asset database has been rebuilt, in aRead More →

When it comes to virtual reality, there are two fronts, two main technical directions that the technology is evolving in that everyone is talking about. But there’s also a third front, that hasn’t been getting as much attention, but which has the potential of being truly revolutionizing. Videos and video games OneRead More →

River Island, a UK-based fashion chain, has released the first-ever fashion app for Google Cardboard-compatible virtual reality headsets. The app was released to promote the launch of the company’s Design Forum x Jean-Pierre Braganza collection, which hits the stores on February 24, and was created in partnership with the British Fashion CouncilRead More →

The drama-plagued AviWorlds grid is back up under its previous ownership with a new domain name, and a new business model. “This will not be a commercial grid and you can only enter by invitation or referral,” grid owner and founder Alexsandro Pomposelli told Hypergrid Business. He is also known asRead More →

Today, the US Patent Office awarded Apple a patent for a virtual reality headset that is, in effect, a case for an iPhone or iPod. The patent application does not mention the iPad — possibly because it was first filed seven years ago, in 2008, two years before the iPadRead More →

Given the choice between selling to Kitely‘s 1,003 local active users or to the 14,075 on the hypergrid, it makes sense that more and more Kitely Market merchants have gone the hypergrid route. In fact, exportables have long been growing at a faster rate than non-exportables for the past eightRead More →

The Adult Metaverse Google Plus group was the fastest-growing OpenSim-related virtual community over the past six weeks. The community, as it sounds, is dedicated to adult content and events on the hypergrid, and has grown from 282 members on January 1 to 444 members today, a growth of 162 members.Read More →

This was another record-breaking month for OpenSim, with new highs in regions, users, and active users on the 303 active worlds. For those who are new readers, OpenSim is a free, open source virtual world platform that’s compatible with the Oculus Rift. It allows people with no technical skills toRead More →

OSgrid has been able to restore the rest of the assets from the recovery disk, OSgrid grid administrator Allen Kerensky announced today. However, he did not provide an estimated date for when OSgrid will be coming back up. He did say that the grid was now working on setting up the networkingRead More →

Immersis, a project from the French VR company Catopsys, has hit its $100,000 Kickstarter goal for a virtual reality projection system. The technology adapts the image, in real-time, to the shape and size of the room you’re in. Watch the video below.Read More →

DX Exchange, one of the oldest exchanges trading Linden Dollars, has now entered the OpenSim payments space. The exchange is now providing the currency infrastructure for Sunlight Grid, with four other grids in beta testing. Currently, there are two main exchanges providing currency services to OpenSim grids. Virwox operates theRead More →

Mattel has updated its View-Master toy, this time, for the smartphone-owning virtual reality generation. The headset, which is scheduled to hit the market in the fall, is made in bright primary colors and works the same way as any other Google Cardboard-compatible headset — it breaks up the cellphone screenRead More →

In the past, several grid owners have discussed using Bitcoin, the peer-to-peer cryptocurrency, for in-world payments but, until now, no grid has done so — Bitcoins are typically too volatile to be used within a grid. To read more about coins and gambling legislation read on https://www.bestuscasinos.org/legal/new-york/ about what mightRead More →

Ireland’s Immersive VR Education Ltd., has launched a Kickstarter to raise funding for its Apollo 11 virtual educational experience for the Oculus Rift. The Kickstarter launched yesterday and is already more than €3,000 towards its €30,000 (US $34,000) goal. Watch the video about the project below. You can also watch an RTERead More →

Its not just cars, movies, and hotels using virtual reality for marketing. Outdoor-apparel brand Merrell showed off an Oculus Rift experience at the Sundance Film Festival last month and said it will do more virtual reality promotions. Watch the video below. Read the full story at AdAge.Read More →

Are you launching a new grid? I bet you’re looking for some combination of “virtual,” “paradise,” “life,” “world,” and “avatar” that haven’t been used yet. Stop! If you use a grid name that reminds people of other OpenSim grids then you will have triple the branding challenge you would have otherwise.Read More →

I Am Cardboard — known for their Google Cardboard virtual reality smartphone cases made out of cardboard or EVA foam — is moving up-scale. Its latest design, XG VR, has already raised $70,000 on Kickstarter, well past its $20,000 goal with 22 days left to go. It’s certainly one ofRead More →

DodoCase, one of the earliest and best known of the many companies that offer Google Cardboard kits, is now offering a design-your-own case for $30. According to the company, volume designs are available for quantities over 50. A plain pop-up viewer is $25, a little on the pricey side forRead More →

The initial batch of companies in what could be the first virtual reality accelerator have been announced. Among the projects selected by Rothenberg Ventures’ River are a system that creates 360-degree VR imagery, a headset that uses eye-tracking to build immersive experiences, and an embedded-in-VR journalism project. Each company got $100,000, office space and regular adviceRead More →

Running your own virtual world? Considering registering a dot-world domain name for it. For example, Sunshine.world is available for $28 from GoDaddy and $25 from NameCheap. The first grid to take advantage of this — ZetaWorlds — has already grabbed the domain Zeta.world, grid owner Timothy Rogers announced today. ICANNRead More →

OSgrid has been able to restore 25 percent of assets from the recovery disk, OSgrid grid administrator Allen Kerensky announced yesterday. He said that Melanie Thielker, an OpenSim core developer and owner of the Avination grid, has been helping with the recovery effort. “With Melanie’s cluster replication design, the assets are importingRead More →

The preview release of OpenSim 0.8.1 is out, with improvements to teleports, physics, varregions, scripting, and more. For large commercial grids, this is an opportunity to check out the new release on their beta grids, so that they are ready for the final release when it comes out — andRead More →

Zandramas — an invitation-only closed grid — will become ZanGrid tomorrow, where anyone is welcome to join. In addition, hypergrid visitors will be able to come in and get a preview of the grid on the hypergrid-enabled Club Zandramas region. According to manager and co-founder Suzan De Koning, the grid decidedRead More →

We seem to be hitting the inflection point on the old hockey-stick curve when it comes to the adoption of virtual reality technology. Consider these headlines, from just the past few days. First, the media-related news, since I’m in the media, and pay more attention to this than pretty muchRead More →

The Silicon Valley VR group has just announced dates and venue for their second annual conference and expo, May 18 and 19 at the San Jose Convention Center. According to Road to VR, organizers Karl Krantz and Nana Usui are expecting 1,200 attendees and 100 of virtual reality’s top innovators on the expoRead More →

Update: More supporters pledged funds to the effort, bringing the total to $2,000. Members of the OpenSim Virtual Google Plus community have pledged $1,550 to improve vehicle scripting by fixing bugs with the way llLookAt and llMoveTo commands are implemented in OpenSim. “Today I’m making a personal pledge of $200Read More →

All OpenSim stats increased this month but the most dramatic increase was on Atek Grid, which more than quadrupled its land area this month with nearly 400 new regions. There are now a total of 56,011 standard region equivalents on the 217 public OpenSim grids that released their stats, 418,293 registeredRead More →

A week ago, I asked: Can AviWorlds find stability under new management? We got the answer today, and the answer is, “No.” “After many weeks of thoughtful consideration, as well as viewing the many comments on Google+, Facebook, and in private emails, we’ve decided to end the battle and closeRead More →

The number of exportable items sold on the Kitely Market has exceeded non-exportables for the first time since the company enabled delivery to other grids early last spring. When Kitely Market merchants add products to their online stores, they can sell those products in a number of variations — differentRead More →

GE has created a virtual experience that uses the Oculus Rift headset to provide an immersive 3D trip to an oil factory on the seabed one mile down off the coast of Brazil, as seen from the pilot’s seat of the virtual Nautilus 1 submersible. Watch the video below, and readRead More →

US $19.95 for a 15,000-prim region on the closed, commercial German-language GerGrid. No hypergrid.Read More →

Virtuix Omni, the leading omni-directional treadmill for the Oculus Rift and similar virtual reality devices, unveiled its sleek final design this week at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The Virtuix Omni raised over $1,000,000 in a Kickstarter campaign last July, and then raised another $2.7 million in fundingRead More →

The name-calling and blame-throwing seems to be settling down, and it looks like AviWorlds is starting to find some stability under new management. Mike Hart is now the owner of the AviWorlds grid, and of the associated domain name AviWorlds.com. “We don’t have any paid staff, but we do haveRead More →

If 2014 was the year of the hypergrid — and it was — then it should also have been the year of the OMC. After all, the OMC, or Open Metaverse Currency, is the only currency which works on the hypergrid and is backed by a trusted exchange, Austria’s Virwox. IfRead More →

A new data replication has successfully passed its first round of testing, OSgrid grid administrator Allen Kerensky announced on Monday. However, there was still no word as to when the grid will be coming back up. In addition, the grid still hasn’t received its recovered data drives from the companyRead More →

The “dark metaverse” of private OpenSim grids gained regions at four times the rate of public grids, according to Hypergrid Business projections based on a survey of hosting providers. Last year, private grids accounted for an estimated 60 percent of all grids, adding up to 50,070 regions in the “darkRead More →