The Adult Metaverse community on Google Plus has just crossed the 1,000 member mark. With 135 new members since the start of August, it is the fastest-growing OpenSim-specific community on the platform. DigiWorldz was in second place by growth, with 89 new members bringing it to a total count ofRead More →

The third annual Summer of Arts 2015 virtual arts event begins on September 25. Metropolis Grid hosts this event to give cyber artists an opportunity to display their works to a wide audience. The art displayed ranges from audio-visual installations and theater projects to paintings and cyberart objects. A specialRead More →

InWorldz and Avination — two of OpenSim’s biggest and oldest commercial grids — have just made extremely large code donations to the OpenSim community. OpenSim server code is distributed under the BSD license. This means that people can make changes to it and keep those changes proprietary. At one point, for example,Read More →

Bright Canopy, the browser-based streaming access service for Second Life and OpenSim, is coming back on Wednesday after a three-week outage. The service launched at the end of August to great reviews but was hit by a sharp spike in the price of cloud computing services. It was offering users all-you-can-eatRead More →

Tangle Grid’s 2015 Steam Expo has been drawing both local residents and hypergrid visitors, grid owner grid owner Leslie Kling told Hypergrid Business. And each event seems to draw more and more people, she added, as word gets out. The Steam Expo and the Fashion Expo are the most popular sheRead More →

AviWorlds now has a Facebook app that allows people to take pictures in-world and post them to Facebook. Many other grids have Facebook pages, but the only other commercial grids with Facebook apps are Island Oasis, which launched theirs late last year, and Kitely, which has had one since 2011. SecondRead More →

Virtual city recreation project Digital Lisbon, currently a part of the AviWorlds grid, has launched a crowd-funding campaign on IndieGoGo to set up its own, dedicated world. Founder Carlos Loff is looking to raise $2,000, which will cover half a year of hosting and provide money for events and content. LoffRead More →

OpenSim grids saw continued steady growth this month, with total region counts, user numbers, and monthly actives all reaching new record highs. There are now the equivalent of 65,122 standard regions on OpenSim’s 317 active public grids, a new record high. There are also 478,497 registered users and 31,567 active users, anRead More →

Pirate’s Atoll announced today that the grid is moving to DigiWorldz. The Atoll has been a small, hypergrid-enabled standalone minigrid hosted with Oliveira Virtual Lands. Grid owner John Simmons, also known as Strannik Zipper in-world, said that he decided to move the grid to be closer to DigiWorldz’ music scene, to take advantageRead More →

DigiWorldz has announced a referral and affiliate program for residents, bloggers, and anyone else who would like to bring new users to the grid and earn a commission on all future land payments. This is not a one-time payment, grid founder Terry Ford told Hypergrid Business. Whenever a new userRead More →

The Scienceverse Kickstarter, originally scheduled to begin today, has been postponed until September 10. The company plans to build an open source virtual reality platform that supports social interactions and third-party app development. It is built on top of Unreal Engine 4 and promises to be compatible with all majorRead More →

It’s a law of economics that, over time and with perfect competition, the price of a product tends to approach the marginal cost of the product — that is, how much it costs to make one more item. The marginal cost of a virtual good is just about as closeRead More →

The DigiWorldz grid has rolled out a new viewer for its residents, based on the Alchemy Viewer, and included Qarl’s mesh deformer functionality. The mesh deformer is a crowd-funded project that successfully raised more than $5,000 from users in Second Life and OpenSim on Indiegogo in 2011. In 2013, InWorldz hired formerRead More →

Dahlia Trimble, an OpenSim core developer who’s been with the project since the summer of 2008, announced today that she is leaving. “I am sad to announce that I will be leaving OpenSimulator Core,” she told fellow developers. “I’ve been finding lately that I no longer have a use forRead More →

Update 2: The community meeting transcript is here, and the Bright Canopy service will probably be coming back only for a limited number of users until the Amazon price fluctuations are dealt with. Update: The company will hold a community meeting Saturday morning in Second Life to answer user questions.Read More →

It’s been a good-news, bad-news summer for Virwox, the European virtual currency exchange that used to dominate third-party Linden Dollar trading. On August 1, all third party Linden Dollar trading officially came to an end. And, before that, the Avination grid cut off its ties with Virwox, and warned users not to trade theRead More →

Storytelling is a valuable form of human expression that has been around since the very ancient times. Story itself is essential to so many art forms, and theater is one of them. We have written before about how virtual reality could be applied to journalism and immersive storytelling. Theatrical “storytellers” are yetRead More →

Press release: Scienverse creates virtual reality world that combines VR apps and social network; Kickstarter campaign starts in 2 weeks THE HAGUE – Scienverse officially announces its project of creating a virtual reality world built with Unreal Engine 4 that provides a platform for third-party virtual reality applications combined with a nextRead More →

Editor’s Note: AviWorlds, an OpenSim-based virtual world, launched a sister hosting company in late June, Avi-Labs. At Hypergrid Business, we’ve been hesitant to recommend it because it had no track record and no customers, and its parent company has a long and turbulent history of instability. Today, however, we have aRead More →

Kitely, the largest commercial OpenSim grid, has rolled out a new region monitoring tool for its users, and published a new guide for detecting and fixing world performance problems. The grid has also added a Web-based option to manually stop a running world, the grid announced earlier this week. “As aRead More →

Bright Canopy will come out of invitation-only pre-release phase on August 29 and will make its Second Life cloud-based streaming service available globally for $17 a month. The Texas-based company allows users of the globally popular virtual world Second Life the means to enjoy it without the need to invest in high-end gamingRead More →

Despite the August heat — at least, here in the northern hemisphere — total region counts, user numbers, and monthly actives were all up in OpenSim. Or perhaps it was because of the heat, as people opted to stay inside, at their computers, in the air conditioning. There are nowRead More →

The Kitely Market hit another milestone this month, with a new total of 10,162 different item listings grouped into 5,030 different products. This is up from 9,971 different listings a month ago. Of the listings, 6,080 are exportable, or 60 percent. Kitely groups items together, so that, say, a red versionRead More →

For many years, former IBMer Justin Clark-Casey has been the eternally-youthful face of OpenSimulator development and the president of the Overte Foundation which oversees OpenSim licensing issues. Then, on Sunday, the Justin Era ended with a post on his blog, Everything that has a beginning has an end, in which he saidRead More →

There are many reasons why a region might be slow to load, but one of the hardest to address has been that of slow scripts. OpenSim doesn’t make it easy to discover which particular scripts are contributing the most to lag — but that is about to change. Kitely hasRead More →

Press release: 3rd Rock Grid to transition to Podex 3rd Rock Grid is going through a number of changes as part of a transition to a new ownership model. One of the changes will be to transition away from directly managing their currency, the Geode, otherwise known as the GO$.Read More →

Most people who’ve traveled the hypergrid have had the experience of not being able to bring stuff back home, or of mysteriously not being able to take content to other grids. Recently, a number of different OpenSim developers have taken on the fight, and have been reporting progress. Crista LopesRead More →

The Adult Metaverse community on Google Plus was the fastest-growing OpenSim community over the last two months, gaining 121 new members for a new total of 866 users. OpenSim Virtual was in second place, with 108 new members for a new total of 1,511. This meant that OpenSim Virtual comfortably retained its place asRead More →

AviWorlds, a grid best known for closing repeatedly with no warning, is on a mission to rehabilitate its public image as a member of the OpenSim community. The grid has hired OpenSim developer Quill Littlefeather, has begun donating code and patches to the OpenSimulator project, and is offering custom viewersRead More →

  Always known for its vibrant music scene, and charitable efforts, 3rd Rock Grid announced a day of music and literature in an effort to raise funds for the charity Doctors Without Borders. For the past eight years 3rd Rock Grid has held ROBstock in the spring, a three dayRead More →

OSgrid has received legal recognition as a non-profit, the grid’s administrators announced earlier this month, just in time for the grid’s 8th birthday celebrations this weekend. OSgrid is the oldest grid running on the OpenSim software, dating back to the summer of 2007. For much of its existence, it hasRead More →

The Kitely Market has successfully delivered purchases to customers on 96 different grids, including both hypergrid-enabled grids and closed grids. “Our marketplace’s reach is continuing to grow,” Kitely CEO Ilan Tocher told Hypergrid Business. “By now it has become quite clear that merchants who take the time to create highRead More →

  New York State Department of Financial Services has recently released a 31 page application for anyone who wants to engage in doing business with virtual currencies. The application is a convoluted and cumbersome to say the least. But most of all it is costly. If the objective was to createRead More →

Correction: Due to an error in collecting data from OSgrid, land area was undercounted this month. In fact, OpenSim’s land area actually increased by the equivalent of 828 regions. OSgrid did lose some land area, but only 395 regions — not 2,500 as reported. “Many people — including myself — have consolidatedRead More →

It seems that every week, I talk to at least one person or organization who start out by saying, “and, of course, we started out project with Linda Kellie’s content.” Last week, for example, I talked to two researchers at City University London helping stroke victims recover their speaking skillsRead More →

In an attempt to combat dwindling logins during the summer months, Craft is organizing a series of summer events — and participants who rent land from the grid get two months free rent for attending. Every year, residents who are still around complain about how few people there are in-world,Read More →

Virtual world artists who wish to participate in Metropolis grid’s Summer of Arts 2015 can begin submitting their works tomorrow. New submissions will continue to be accepted until the end of summer. The exhibit opens to the public on September 25 and will run through October 25. This exhibition willRead More →

The founders of the fast-growing, low-priced DigiWorldz grid have settled their ownership dispute, putting at rest fears about the grid’s stability and future. “I was able to negotiate an amicable agreement by all previous and current members of Digital Worlds Group, LLC,” grid founder Terry Ford told Hypergrid Business. “DigiWorldz is nowRead More →

The crowfunding campaign to build a virtual copy of the city of Lisbon was relaunched today, founder Carlos Loff said in an announcement. The project is now planned to be 144 regions in size, equivalent to about 9.4 square kilometers or 2,300 acres of virtual land. That’s about one-ninth the size ofRead More →

Today, I was finally able to use my iPhone to walk around my little home region in OpenSim. Well, kind of… I used the CtrlAltStudio viewer to get the side-by-side 3D view. Then I used the Splashtop Streamer software to send my desktop display to the companion $2.99 Splashtop app on theRead More →

All I wanted was to take a Damien Fate rigged mesh skirt, tweak it a little bit in Blender, and import it into OpenSim. But for some reason, bringing it into Blender destroyed the rigging. Kathleen Watkins, also known as Serene Jewell in-world, teaches free Blender classes on Kitely. (HerRead More →

One thing that has always provided a great source of delight for me is opening the map of my viewer and seeing little green dots fill a region. Does it sound like I need a doctor? Well, it’s possible, but a good marketing plan made it happen. Each green dot represents a singleRead More →

OpenSim’s land area hit a new high this month and more than 9,000 new users registered on the grids, but active user numbers slipped by 672 as we enter the summer months. OpenSim grids gained 1,733 new regions, for a new total of 62,995. The gains were almost all on the hypergrid. ClosedRead More →

The Kitely Market gained almost 700 new listings this month, its biggest growth month since the market first launched two years ago. More than two-thirds of these listings were for exportable items, available for purchase on almost any hypergrid-enabled grid and some closed grids. The market now has 9,392 differentRead More →

After a dispute between the partners of Digital Worlds Group, a US-based company offering content creation, development, and OpenSim hosting services, the group’s DigiWorldz grid has been split off as its own company, now based in the Netherlands. Two of the former Digital Worlds Group partners, Mark Wiseman and Terry Ford, areRead More →

Scientists at China’s University of Science and Technology of China and the Microsoft Research in Beijing have built a deep learning machine that outperforms an average human on the verbal analogies portion of the IQ test — normally the hardest part of the test for computers. In particular, they’ve solved the problem of oneRead More →

A little while ago, I noticed a familiar headline in a Google alert on a topic I follow — it was my own article, reprinted without permission on some other site! I quickly sent off this email: The following article on the website somewebsite.com, hosted by SomeHostingCompany, was reprinted without permission. Infringing article: TheRead More →

Craft World‘s Museo del Metaverso will be hosting a fashion exhibit this fall, Virtual Christine announced recently, and is looking for fashion designers from throughout the metaverse who are interested in participating. There will be no catwalk, instead it will be an exhibit for everyone to see. The whole purpose ofRead More →

Craft-World is hosting a photography competition, with the judging scheduled for June 25, and the deadline for submissions on June 16. The theme is “Postcards from Craft” which requires participants to take photos of themselves around the regions on Craft-World in postcard style. The best photographer will win a 10,000Read More →

Seven years ago when I began Paris METRO Couture, in Second Life, there were very few insider tips on how to start a fashion business. I am a business person who has designed apparel in the real life as well, and so I wondered, do the same principles apply toRead More →

On Saturday, June 6, Avination will be hosting a charity benefit in support of the Sophie Lancaster Foundation, an organization set up in memory of Sophie Lancaster and to promote a more tolerant, less violent society. Who is Sophie Lancaster? Sophie Lancaster was a 21 year old goth girl who was murdered whileRead More →

The Adult Metaverse and OpenSim Virtual are still gaining members on Google Plus, but at about half the rate as last month. Adult Metaverse gained 54 new users, the biggest growth of any OpenSim-specific community, for a new total of 745 members. OpenSim Virtual gained 52 new members and retained itsRead More →

Kitely has cut prices by 60 percent for its two top plans by more than half today and officially eliminated metered pricing for new customers. Previously, the most expensive plan was around $100 a month, for an island that could be configured as a megaregion as large as 16 standard regions,Read More →

Last night, on In World Review, a major topic of discussion was how horrendously difficult Blender is to use. You can’t just install it and start playing around. I tried, and it almost killed me. No obvious mouse gestures work. The menus don’t make sense. In fact, there are threeRead More →

Customers have been able to shop on the Kitely Market and get the products delivered to other grids for over a year, But adding a new grid to the delivery list meant that the customer had to know the grid’s loginURI and add it through the grid manager. With hundredsRead More →

Wheeling, WV– The Exo-Life Virtual World released the first two in a new series of OAR files for some grids operating the OpenSim platform today. An OAR is a region backup file. It includes the landscape and all buildings, scripts, and other items available on a region. All independent hosting companies andRead More →

In order to write about how to create stuff for sale on the Kitely Market, I’ve been playing around with baked-on clothing textures. In the process, I’ve learned a few more things about using layers to create textures with GIMP. Say, for example, you want to create a piece ofRead More →

Commercial virtual world Tangle Grid has been down for two weeks due to a series of technical problems — including an actual lightning strike. The grid is still have problems repairing the database, grid owner Leslie Kling told Hypergrid Business. “But we think we are getting lose. We feel we willRead More →

So you want to operate a business in a virtual world, with a shop that people can visit and look around. Last week, I offered some tips for creating demand for your products. This week, here’s some advice on how to do a competitive analysis. 1. Gauging quality How doRead More →

The Great Canadian Grid is experiencing a population explosion and a housing crunch. According to the Corran Journal, the Freelands regions have turned into “upscale refugee camps” as friends share parcels until housing becomes available. The Great Canadian Grid has gained nearly 500 registered users over the past month. Read moreRead More →

There’s a well used adage, “sex sells.” It’s a bit of a cliche but true. There are many other sales triggers of course, including fear — used a lot by insurance companies, hope — used by lotteries, and vanity — used by beauty and cosmetics firms. The list is endless. However, theyRead More →

OpenSim’s land area and active users hit new record highs this month. Land area passed 4,000 square kilometers for the first time, and 60,000 regions, while active users crossed the 32,000 mark. At 4,015 square kilometers, OpenSim’s public grids added together are now bigger than the state of Rhode Island.Read More →

According to a new survey of 267 Second Life residents, two-thirds found virtual sex to be less fun than real sex. However, despite being less fun, three quarters said that they still wished that their real-life sex was more like that in the virtual world. Some reasons could be thatRead 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 →

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 →

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’ve been taking a lot of snapshots of regions for Hyperica listings and have been experimenting with the Phototools feature in the Firestorm viewer. The Phototools feature allows you to pep up your snapshots and make them look gorgeous. To access some of the Phototools features quickly, at the bottom rightRead 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 →

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 →

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 →

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 →

My name is Tyler Brabo, and, ten days ago, I was hired to research hypergrid destinations for Hyperica. This required that I create an account in OpenSim, get an avatar, and figure out how to surf the hypergrid. My boss, Maria Korolov, asked me to keep track of what problemsRead 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 →

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 →

The latest releases virtual world viewers, such as Firestorm, Singularity, and Kokua can provide access to a “Destination Guide” for your OpenSim grid for both local and hypergrid visitors. And this guide can feature both local and hypergrid destinations. But the grid owner first has to enable this feature in their configurationRead 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 →