U.K.-based group Infinite Void is seeking £5,000 — about US $8,500 — for a virtual ride to outer space. The idea is to send a weather balloon with 12 GoPro cameras up to the edge of space — 30 kilometers, or nearly 20 miles, straight up. The recorded video would then be
Press release: Virtual Reality Platform Aims to Create a 3D Interactive Replica of Your City A realistic copy of your city and yourself in 3D, this is what TimeWalk, a new technology start-up, is set to develop in the next years. The TimeWalk developers want to create a unique platform that
The world’s first Oculus Rift-equipped virtual reality arcade is scheduled to open in Boston this September, and the company is looking to the public for the funds to buy all the equipment. Nick Lee, founder of Boston-based Good Game, first got the idea to open an arcade from his travels in
In celebration of the fact that Hypergrid Business has had more than 20,000 readers this month — a record high — I’ve been looking at the design of our advertising sales page. I’d been leaving this for last because for me, like for many people, this is the least fun part.
The AviWorlds grid has opened, and then closed again, five times. Today, it reopened with a brand-new business model — that of a “private community.” “AviWorlds is now back online as I promised,” said grid owner Alexandro Pomposelli — also known as Alex Ferraris in-world — in a comment earlier
Kitely, the largest commercial OpenSim grid by land area, plans to deliver its Kitely Market content throughout the metaverse — not just to OpenSim grids. “Our goal is to make Kitely Market the main metaverse marketplace,” Kitely CEO Ilan Tochner told Hypergrid Business. “As there are more than one platform vying
The popular Diva Distro version of OpenSim is now available with the latest 0.8 update of the software, supporting variable-sized regions and profiles. “Profiles and varregions both work out of the box for new installations of the Diva Distro,” developer Crista Lopes said in the announcement. Lopes, who is also known as Diva
Arch Virtual is putting the finishing touches on a super fun project for the Sacramento Kings to help project stakeholders, fans and members of the community explore the arena long before construction starts. The new $477 million downtown Sacramento Entertainment and Sports Center was approved by the city of Sacramento last
Linden Lab is working on a new virtual world, Linden Lab has confirmed, but urged users not to panic. “Linden Lab is working on a next generation virtual world that will be in the spirit of Second Life, an open world where users have incredible power to create anything they can
Linden Lab is working on a next generation virtual world that would not be backwards compatible with Second Life, said Radegast viewer developer Latif Khalifa in a post at SLUniverse today. According to Khalifa, Linden Lab CEO Ebbe Altberg broke the news today at a meeting with third party viewer
Over 40,000 orders for the Oculus Rift’s Development Kit 2 have already come in, bringing the total number of headsets sold to over 100,000. The DK2 became available for pre-order in mid-March, and shipping is scheduled to begin next month. “We’ll ship 20 to 30,000 in July,” said Nate Mitchell,
The BBC is experimenting with immersive virtual reality, according to today’s blog post by Cyrus Saihan, head of business development for BBC Future Media. “When the BBC started making the world’s first regular public television broadcasts in 1936, there were only about 20,000 TV sets capable of receiving the programming,”
Press release: Red Dot Square announces ground breaking Virtual Reality software to help organisations make better, faster, retail and shopper decisions A new development in Virtual Reality technology is changing the way businesses plan, visualise and improve the retail and shopper experience thanks to the creation of the industry’s leading
KZero, a UK-based virtual reality consulting company, released a slide deck today covering different approaches to virtual reality hardware. The full report, Hardware Radar for Virtual Reality: Q2 2014, was released last week.
About a month ago, a preview of OpenSim 0.8 came out, with rotating regions, Bullet physics, and variable-sized regions. The testing is now complete, and the official, recommended 0.8 release is now out. Get all the details about the update in the release notes, or read our earlier story about the
This is it. This is the kind of moment every democratic citizen argues for: An opportunity to give voice to your demands as a citizen. Don’t waste it. Act now. On May 15, the Federal Communications Commission began seeking public comments on how best to protect an open Internet. The public
Second Life is a “viable and flexible” platform for physics simulations testing alternatives and predecessors to Newtonian physics, according to a paper published last month by a professor at the Lutheran University of Brazil The choice to use Second Life for the experiment was a simple one. “As I researched a few
Update 2: The 200-plus-user drop on Zandramas, is due to a similar problem as at Metropolis, a glitch in the database during the recent upgrades. Update: The 700-user drop on Metropolis is a result of a glitch caused by some regions updating from OpenSim 0.7.6 to 0.8.0. The grid is working on fixing
According to a new study by a professor at the MIT Sloan School of Business, patent trolls cost startups $21.772 billion in lost venture capital funding over the past five years. The study specifically focuses on actual patent trolls — companies that file 20 or more patent lawsuits — not on
Framestore, the company behind the “Game of Thrones” virtual reality simulations at SXSWi 2014, has opened what it says is the world’s first virtual reality and immersive content studio. “We’re already building a state-of-the-art space in our New York office to accommodate a variety of cutting-edge equipment that will guide
It was more than a year ago when developers from the Avination grid and the Singularity viewer got together and created a new permission for OpenSim, the export permission. Since then, no major grid has adopted it, not even Avination itself. Until now. But it’s not Avination rolling out the export
Press release: Science Fiction Inspires Lowe’s Holoroom and Home Improvement Innovation Augmented reality project planning experience is first concept from newly-formed Lowe’s Innovation Labs MOORESVILLE, N.C. – On Wednesday, Lowe’s underscored its commitment to advancing retail innovation as it introduced Lowe’s Innovation Labs and the first concept to come out
Saying “much troubled” isn’t enough anymore. This is “the grid that would not die.” “The grid with the rollercoaster past.” This is the grid that changes its business model or closes down so often that you get whiplash if you try to keep up. Yes, AviWorlds is back. “Whoever is
Expedia will now accept Bitcoin as payment for hotel reservations, the company announced in a press release Wednesday. The company will be using Coinbase to process the Bitcoin payments, converting them immediately into US dollars. This is the same vendor used by Overstock and Dish to process their Bitcoin payments.
Linden Lab founder Philip Rosedale offered insights into his new company’s business model and technical architecture yesterday in a talk and question-and-answer session about High Fidelity on the MOSES OpenSim grid yesterday. Of particular interest from a business perspective is that the High Fidelity software will be open source, similar to
London-based Cmoar Ltd. unveiled a new smartphone-based virtual reality headset at the Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles this week. The company is planning a Kickstarter for the project, but no date has yet been set. The headset is designed for watching traditional movies on a virtual movie screen, for watching 3D
Update: Simvalley, one of the grids mentioned in the below article, is no longer active. Folks who rent regions from Swondo, Dreamland Metaverse, Zetamex and Sasso can now upgrade them to super-sized varregions at no additional costs. Swondo, a Dutch hosting company offering regions on OSgrid and Metropolis, has been
Control VR, the glove-based controller system that got half-way to its $250,000 Kickstarter goal after just one day, has now passed that goal with 23 days left to go. The Los Angles-based company is promising delivery by Christmas of this year, with a two-glove development kit priced at the $600 pledge level.
As of today, the only Kitely users who can create new metered regions are those with premium accounts. As part of this change, the metered regions will also be renamed to “Premium” regions. In addition, all existing metered regions owned by free users will no longer be accessible by their owners
Do you think your design for a virtual Mars base is good enough to live in? Then you’ve got three days left to submit it to NASA. That’s right, the 3D content sharing site Thingiverse from MakerBot Industries LLC is teaming up with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory on the MakerBot
The Federal Aviation Administration is using virtual reality in helping design and test aviation systems, according to a report yesterday in the Press of Atlantic City. Read the full article here. Read more about the FAA’s Virtual Reality Laboratory.
Critical Mass has unveiled its national product launch campaign for Fire Eater – the hot cinnamon liqueur presented by Early Times, a Brown-Forman brand.
Jimmy Fallon and guest Channing Tatum tried on Sony’s Project Morpheus virtual reality headset Friday night, and you can watch the video here, starting at the 1:45 mark:
I love watching YouTube demos of new Oculus Rift titles, and am a fan of PewDiePie and folks like him. Last night, however, I watched an Oculus Rift review video that wasn’t the typical player-scared-by-creepy-shadow or man-scared-by-rollercoaster or grandmother-astounded-by-Tuscan-villa. It was an opera, Senza Peso, reviewed by emart. I’ve been trying to
Madison, Wisconsin-based Arch Virtual, a company that builds 3D environments for visualization, simulation and marketing, is looking to hire Oculus Rift and Unity developers, and as well as 3D modelers. Read the full announcement here.
Quality reasons have caused Ohio-based YEI Corporation to delay shipping on its Kickstarter-funded PrioVR virtual reality full body controller system. “You deserve a quality product and we don’t believe the product we can ship next month will meet that level of quality,” said Mike Sutherland, VP of YEI Technology, in an announcement. “The short
With 14 days left to go in its Kickstarter, the Beijing-based ANTVR Technology Co., Ltd., is now looking at stretch goals for the next two weeks. The Kickstarter for an open source version of the Oculus Rift ends on Jun 23 and has already passed $231,000 on a goal of $200,000.
Today, the leading contender for the default virtual reality input device are hand-held controllers such as the Razer Hydra from Sixense, or camera-based systems which are limited by the camera’s line of sight. Now, Los Angles-based Control VR is attempting to change the game — so to speak — with
Scientists at Delft University in the Netherlands have improved the accuracy of a quantum entanglement-based communication channel from one in 100 million in a previous experiment in Maryland to 100 percent today. The information was sent from one solid-state diamond chip to another one, three meters, or ten feet, away.
Loading Human, a first-person adventure from Untold Games that ended a successful Kickstarter this past Tuesday, will have a natural, “invisible interface” approach to interactivity. Hand-held controllers allow the player to interact with any object in the game. Of particular interest is the fact that the in-world hands change gestures
The Virtuix Omni, an omni-directional treadmill commonly seen in conjunction with the Oculus Rift, has delayed shipping to end of this summer or later. According to an update sent out a week ago to its Kickstarter backers, Virtuix has run into manufacturing issues with one of the components of the
OpenSim news site Grid-Press has reached its first fundraising goal on Patreon, a crowdfunding site that allows supporters to schedule regular payments to artists and other creators. Pledges start at as little as $1 a month, and higher pledge levels come with bonuses such as T-shirts and exclusive OAR files.
Oculus Rift creator Palmer Luckey said that creating a metaverse is the right thing to do, morally. “I think there’s a lot of reasons that you can argue that it is a moral imperative that we create a perfect virtual reality,” he said in a clip posted and transcribed by
It has been a while since my last visit to Second Life with the Oculus Rift. Now that there have been new releases of the Second Life Oculus Rift Project Viewer and CtrlAltStudio Viewer, it seems like a good idea to take the Rift for a Sunday outing and check out
Press release: MellaniuM creates 3D museum art 100 times more detailed than Second Life HAMILTON, Ontario — Virtual design firm MellaniuM has developed a process to to import extremely detailed objects into spaces running on the AvayaLive Engage browser-based virtual world platform. As a demonstration of this process, the company has
Two leading OpenSim hosting vendors — Kitely and Zetamex — both announced major site redesigns this week. But only one can be the winner of our first site vs. site, head-to-head redesign competition. And, before you start yelling, I understand that these two sites have different purposes, and service different
The Tropical Paradise Virtual World grid shut down with no warning to either its residents or its staff, one of the employees told Hypergrid Business today. “Today, everything — including the grid, the website, Facebook and Twitter — were taken down without any prior notice or warning to anyone,” said
Press release: Announcing the 2nd Annual OpenSimulator Community Conference 2014 June 3, 2014 – AvaCon and the Overte Foundation are pleased to announce the second annual OpenSimulator Community Conference 2014, to take place virtually on the OpenSimulator Conference Center grid on November 8-9, 2014. The OpenSimulator Community Conference is an
The on-demand Kitely grid has fixed a minor but annoying hypergrid bug and will be donating it to the OpenSim community. The bug fix was part of a bigger collection of bug fixes and site design changes announced today. Usually, to teleport from one grid to another, users type a
According to the latest Google Analytics report, the number of unique monthly readers on Hypergrid Business passed 19,000 this month. Readership normally goes up and down a bit every month, depending on the season, breaking stories, and how much time I have to spend on the site, but typically hovers
This month we’re featuring poetry and other literary-related events on the hypergrid. Poetry on Kitely The on-demand Kitely grid is rapidly becoming a poetry hub for the hypergrid. Every Sunday except June 1, at 3 p.m. Pacific, there’s the “Freda in Progress” reading at the Babel Tower Auditorium on the
Oculus VR is teaming up with Samsung on a new virtual reality headset, Engadget reported today. Oculus will provide the software, Samsung will handle the hardware. Samsung will also give Oculus early access to its next-generation OLED display screens. The site also reported that Samsung’s new headset will not be
BOSTON — The Immersive Education Initiative today announced that all official Immersive Education events will now accept Bitcoin starting with Immersion 2014 in Los Angeles next week, followed by the European Immersive Education Summit in Vienna this fall and the Immersive Researcher’s Summit in New York City next spring. To encourage
The much-troubled AviWorlds grid is down again. The grid has been a target for controversy since its first launched in early 2011 as AvWorlds with a plan of being the most expensive social grid. Since then the grid has changed business models numerous times, changed hosting providers, and repeatedly changed
Las Vegas-based OpenSim hosting company Zetamex will stop hosting minigrids on June 1, company CEO Timothy Rogers announced yesterday. Zetamex will continue to provide hosting for individual regions and full grids. A minigrid — technically known as a standalone — is a grid that runs entirely within a single server.
Today, I decided that what my gates were missing were sound and light effects. Other gates had whooshing noises and particle explosions — I wanted them, too. I couldn’t find any that I liked. Maybe I didn’t search hard enough but anyway, I looked up the instructions for llPlaySound and
The arcade industry was decimated back in the mid-90’s by the advancements in consumer console games as well as a failure to adapt to changing player demographics. Virtual reality could bring it back. As a side benefit, virtual reality arcades could help drive the development of the technology, whet public appetite for
Today, I helped an OpenSim entrepreneur, known to the metaverse as Minethere Always, come up with a visual style for her ads and website, using a super slimmed down version of the branding process that an agency would use. She might decide to go into a totally different direction, which
If you’re like me, you’ve been downloading OAR files like crazy. For example, I’ve got a full set of Linda Kellie OARs — just in case. And the Hyperica hyperport redesign keeps generating new OARs, since we want to save a copy at every major step in the process. Up until
Mona Eberhardt has a great post today on Living Virtually about the heights of Second Life avatars. Unfortunately, since we use the same viewers, all the same issues apply to OpenSim users as well. Maybe somebody out there has some ideas for a solution?
Since I last checked out grid-worthy WordPress themes, many more gorgeous, free, responsive themes have hit the market. Here’s a roundup of a few I’ve collected, thinking, “Wow, this would make a great grid website!” because they have a strong focus on images. These themes illustrate some of the other things I
Now that I am a world renowned published author – thanks to Hypergrid Business publishing my last article — I began vigorously stroking my…er…um…er… long beard – tuts to all of you with filthy minds – and began thinking of ways to help promote and extend the reach of the hypergrid community
Sarah Kline, moderator of the OpenSim Google Plus community, posted a note today that the grid is now accepting reservations for the festivities. The event will be held on July 26 and 27, and two 512-meter-square variable regions have been created for it — a land area equivalent to eight
I’m always playing around with hypergate scripts, trying to make them easier to use. This particular script works by getting the name of your destination from the object’s name, and its hypergrid or local address from its description. The gate itself is just a flat panel in two pieces, the
I’ve been asked for some marketing advice recently, and realized that other people might benefit from it as well. I’ve written on this topic before, but it hasn’t made much of an impact! So I’m revisiting it again. I truly believe that OpenSim is a great platform, and what it
One of the security features of the recent versions of OpenSim is the “My Suitcase” folder. It protects your content when you travel to other grids. I hate that suitcase. Half the time, I can’t access the stuff in it. It just gets in my way. So when Dan Banner,
Vancouver-based Utherverse Digital Inc., a proprietary virtual world platform known for its adult content, is developing a new generation of its software that will not only be Oculus Rift compatible right from the start, but can also replace your current Web browser. According to Utherverse CEO Brian Shuster, the new Curio browser
Las Vegas-based OpenSim hosting provider Zetamex has announced a new inventory system that promises to be faster and more scalable than the default OpenSim infrastructure, with the ability to heal itself automatically if data is corrupted. The system is currently in preliminary testing and available exclusively to Zetamex customers. There is
The virtual reality hardware landscape is changing so quickly, it’s hard to keep up. But one trend is already clear, with devices falling into one of three categories — PC and console peripherals, self-contained systems, and smartphone-powered headsets. Here’s an overview of what’s going on with the all the major
No this isn’t the start of a bad joke, although as you read on, you may find that it could be, only the joke is on you…or in this case, it was on me. Like many grid owners, and even just regular OpenSim users, I was excited when I first
Press release: EON Reality Launches the World’s Largest Virtual Reality Library, EON Experience The EON Experience Portal enables global EON developers to bring their innovative applications to market. IRVINE, Calif. – EON Reality Inc., the world’s leading provider of Virtual Reality software, systems, and applications, launches the new EON Experience Portal, the world’s
Littlefield Grid is raising money for charity victims with donation boards on its high-traffic public areas. “We hope that it helps,” said grid owner Walter Balazic. The project was spearheaded by one of the grid’s residents, who lives in Serbia. “I’m sure Contessa Newton would appreciate our friendship and support
In March, Second Life released an Oculus Rift-compatible viewer to a limited number of beta testers, including our own Ann Cudworth. Yesterday, an updated version of this viewer has been released, and this time it’s available to the public. It includes automatic hardware detection for faster setup and calibration, a
I’ve read a lot of “the story behind the Oculus Rift” articles over the past few months, so the one from Wired magazine has been sitting in my in-box for a couple of days now. But I finally got around to reading it, and it’s deep and comprehensive. Well worth checking out
Press release: Full-service creative design agency, Cubicle Ninjas, launches VR services for business. Their mission is provide businesses with a fresh opportunity to tell stronger stories through the new technology. Glen Ellyn, IL — Cubicle Ninjas announces a suite of services for businesses looking to explore new opportunities in virtual reality.
Quick round up of three stories that I had missed, in case you get all your virtual reality news from Hypergrid Business. Virtual reality comes to Chuck E. Cheese’s A $350 virtual reality headset might seem a little pricey, so until prices come down you can get your virtual reality fix
In February, I ran an overview piece about the Best metaverse communities, which has since become one of the most-read articles on this site. Yesterday, I updated that article with some new communities, and just got word of a few more communities that I’m missing, which might be of particular interest to
FrancoGrid is holding its Fest’Avi event June 6 through 8 and would-be participants have until Monday, May 26, to submit their avatar designs to the competition. Registration is open to both local residents and residents of any other OpenSim grid, and winning avatars will be determined by the public and
CORRECTION: AviWorlds did, in fact, respond to my request for comment. I was wrong. The 1,000-plus regions that were listed as active on the grid were self-hosted by a grid resident and thus not always up. It is my policy to count regions as active in these cases. In addition, several people
Survios is a virtual reality startup that combines an Oculus Rift headset, Sixense controllers, a Sony Move motion detector and a battery pack plus its own game software for a self-contained virtual reality system. It has raised $4 million in venture capital funding, led by Shasta Ventures, VentureBeat reported today.
Silicon Valley Virtual Reality Conference & Expo 2014 — billed as the world’s first professional conference for consumer virtual reality — kicked off today with Oculus Rift inventor Palmer Luckey and other hardware innovators and a keynote by Second Life founder Philip Rosedale. Some of the videos of the first
Press release: Pantomime 3D App Launches Interactive VR and Augmented Reality Platform The Pantomime 3D app, launched today, lets iPad and iPhone users reach into realistic 3D worlds with their mobile devices. Levity Novelty and Pantomime Corporation announced they are offering this revolutionary VR and augmented reality software free of
The on-demand, cloud-based Kitely grid has had hypergrid connectivity on its to-do list ever since it first launched in the spring of 2011. Actually enabling hypergrid, however, took quite a bit longer than expected — but the wait is finally over. Last night, the first group of users tested Kitely’s
Press release: SMI and WorldViz Bring Eye Tracking to Virtual Reality BERLIN and TELTOW, Germany — VSS 2014 inFlorida: SensoMotoric Instruments and WorldViz show responsive 3D scenarios incorporating gaze and motion tracking for realistic analysis and interaction in VR environments. SensoMotoric Instruments (SMI), a leader in eye tracking technology, and
A Beijing-based company, ANTVR Technology Co., Ltd., has created an open source version of the Oculus Rift and has reached $145,000 of its $200,000 Kickstarter goal after just four days. This particular device falls into the same category as the Oculus Rift and Sony’s Project Morpheus, offering fully immersive virtual reality,
Due to the loss of a major landowner after incivility on the forums, the commercial InWorldz grid will be stepping up moderation, InWorldz co-founder and CTO David Daeschler announced yesterday. “The equivalent of $1,950 per month of land revenue is about to disappear forever from the InWorldz grid, and beautiful builds never
The OpenSim metaverse nearly doubled in land area this month, as Virtual Worlds Grid added the equivalent of more than 18,000 regions to its grid, taking advantage of new variable size region functionality. Virtual Worlds Grid is a hypergrid-enabled community grid which provides free land to educators. The top 40
On Thursday, the Federal Communications Commission voted 3-2 to begin a four-month public comment period about new rules billed as meant to protect and promote an open Internet. For example, under the new rules, “priority service offered exclusively by a broadband provider to an affiliate should be considered illegal until proven otherwise.” However, according
Orlando, Fla. — U.S. Army Research Lab’s Simulation & Training Technology Center announced an open postdoctoral position on the MOSES team, which is working to develop the MOSES OpenSim grid and associated technologies. “We have identified two areas of research for this position and applicants must specify which research topic they
Press release: CyberLightning brings 3D visualization to industrial internet of things CyberVille Combines Big Data Processing and 3D Internet Technology in Powerful Platform for Monitoring and Control of Energy Networks and Smart City Infrastructure Oulu, Finland – CyberLightning Ltd., today introduced CyberVille, a software platform for visual monitoring and control
For OpenSim’s Oculus Rift users, the standard keyboard-based interface leaves a lot to be desired, due to the fact that, with the headset on, you can’t see the keyboard. A video game controller, however, is designed to be used without looking at it. Yesterday, David Rowe, the developer behind the
The release candidate of the next version of OpenSim — version 0.8 — is now out, and it’s got a bunch of cool new features, including a new default physics engine and the ability to rotate entire regions. A “release candidate” is not the final official release, but it is
We all know about the downsides of bubbles — the investment of time and money in hopeless projects, the over-inflated expectations, the fact that hype is all you see everywhere you go. But whether you call a bubble, a boom, or, per the Gartner hype cycle, the “peak of inflated
A new update for the Lumiya Android app is now out, with support for fitted mesh and other improvements. Lumiya is a 3D viewer for Second Life and OpenSim that allows users to send and receive instant messages, participate in local chat, interact with objects, manage inventories, and see and navigate the
I’ve written before about a few low-cost Oculus Rift alternatives, which basically put a cellphone inside some kind of frame. They include the Altergaze, which just concluded a successful Kickstarter with headset prices at around $140. And the vRase, which had its successful Kickstarter last fall with Kickstarter prices for the preorders starting at around $80.
IrisVR, a Vermont-based startup focusing on 3D visualization of architectural designs, won a $70,000 grand prize at the LaunchVT competition on Thursday. The company’s software allows architects to fully immerse users inside the proposed build. “Current methods for displaying and interacting with three dimensional space fail to immerse the user
Getting a student or employee into a virtual world is difficult enough without having to take them through the process of adding a private school or company grid to the viewer’s grid selection menu. There is currently no easy, automated process to create a custom viewer that has your grid
As many of you will know the 2014 Virtual World Best Practices in Education conference was held from the 9th to the 12th of April and a very successful and well attended conference it was. A little harder for those outside the main time zone of PDT to get the full experience