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 →

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 →

Game development studio Epic has just announced that their engine, the infamous Unreal Engine, will be completely free for everyone to use starting immediately. This is a full version of Unreal Engine, and not just a demo or trial version. Those who choose to use Unreal Engine will still beRead More →

Sony says its Project Morpheus will be released for the PlayStation 4 in the first half of 2016, bringing virtual reality to its game console. The manufacturer revealed a new design for the headset as well as improved hardware specifications, as it prepares to release the PS4-powered VR headset inRead More →

MindMaze Announces $8.5 Million in Angel Funding; MindLeap Game System Driven by Players’ Brainwaves SAN FRANCISCO — GAME DEVELOPERS CONFERENCE – Today MindMaze, a neurotechnology company, unveiled the industry’s first thought-powered virtual reality (VR), augmented reality and motion capture game system, MindLeap. The system is based on MindMaze’s proprietary, medically-provenRead More →

I’ve been following the drama surrounding AviWorlds much, much closer than I would have liked — because I keep getting emails from the folks involved, and also because it’s my job. And I can honestly say that I don’t know who owns AviWorlds anymore, who runs it, and why peopleRead More →

So you’ve decided to start a commercial grids, hosting company, or consulting firm. Congratulations! But customers aren’t breaking down the doors like you expected. You could blame the customers for not being smart enough to appreciate what you’re offering. Or you could check and see if you’re making any ofRead More →

In doing this month’s stats report, I updated the Terms of Service and Intellectual Property Rights policy links for a few grids. And I got to wondering about all the other grids that don’t have these policies posted. Out of 213 active grids this month, I only have links toRead More →

I recently contracted with a builder to do some work on the Hyperica hyperport, and created a new provider agreement for the project. At the start of the project, before we had negotiated any terms, there were a bunch of options to pick from. The ones that were relevant to our project areRead More →

A little more than two weeks ago, AviWorlds came back from its fifth official grid closing — not counting temporary outages due to technical issues — to announce that they will be running the grid by themselves from now on, with no outside help. Portuguese-language messages on the grid’s FacebookRead More →

There are only four days left to get your proposal in for this fall’s OpenSimulator Community Conference. Last year, around 350 people attended the conference, and more than 3,000 watched the 40-plus videos posted online. The conference was also a great opportunity to network with potential business partners and technology experts.Read More →

As one of five partners in a very small  virtual world software startup, I went in search of patents that may concern my company’s next software product. I had no idea that I would be mired in a sea of legalese. Much of our company’s work involves the OpenSim platform.Read More →

If you accidentally stumbled on this story on Google thinking it was going to be about how to arrange cereal boxes on a supermarket shelf, you’re in the wrong place. This article is about how to create products that are designed to withstand commodification or virtualization. On second thought, someRead More →

Do you have a grid running on the Diva Distro and using its Wifi Web Application Account Management module? If your grid’s website looks like this, then you do: OpenSim versions that use this web front end include the Diva Distro, Sim-on-a-Stick and New World Studio mini grids, as well asRead More →

Kitely Market is out of private beta and is now delivering goods to any hypergrid-enabled grid. By default, the Market offers a choice of deliveries to avatars on Kitely itself, as well as to  Craft, DigiWorldz, FrancoGrid, Great Canadian Grid, Metropolis, OSgrid, and ZanGrid. Just make sure the items you’reRead More →

If you have read my previous article, New comment moderation policy, you know that moderation has been proposed for Hypergrid Business. Maria and I have worked on the guidelines, which are listed below, and via a link at the bottom of every site page. You can also send an emailRead More →

This document describes comment moderation on the Hypergrid Business website. Comments that are withheld for moderation will be reviewed, but it will not be instantaneous. Please allow 24 hours before you conclude that your comment is permanently declined. Likewise, it may take up to 24 hours to come upon andRead More →

Today, OpenSim development moves along at an uneven pace, with an estimated 1,200 bugs that need to be fixed before OpenSim can get to a stable, reliable version 1.0 release and get out of “alpha.” Development is mainly driven by three groups — large organizations like Intel who have paidRead More →

If you’re planning to create a new grid website, or redesign an old one, a great place to start is WordPress themes. WordPress is a popular blogging platform, so it’s easy to update. You can create accounts for all your grid administrators and volunteers so that they can upload newRead More →

Hypergrid Business articles and other content — except where noted — is copyright protected and cannot be cut-and-pasted to other sites. Though I don’t mind people using excerpts or quotes. There are both good and selfish reasons for this. The good one is that we might have made a mistakeRead More →

In researching today’s news story about Linden Lab terms of services change, content seemed to be the main topic. Protecting it, licensing it, controlling it, owning it. Everyone wants content. Creators make content, then content attracts users. Without any content, there is no grid. Or is there? Is content reallyRead More →

Regions on Second Life are going black, creators pulling out, Renderosity and CG Textures forbidding the upload of their content to Second Life, and a new survey of content creators indicates they expect things to get worse, while OpenSim grids stand ready to welcome another crop of fleeing content creators.Read More →

Press release: Avination is sponsoring and attending the first annual OpenSimulator Community Conference on September 7-8, 2013 The first annual OpenSimulator Community Conference will open on September 7, 2013 and Avination, one of the main contributors will not only be part of it but also co-sponsoring the event. It is the first conference ofRead More →

The first annual OpenSimulator Community Conference will open this Saturday morning Pacific time with a keynote panel of core developers discussing the future of the OpenSimulator platform. Core developer panelists include Justin Clark-Casey, who is the president of the Overte Foundation that oversees OpenSim. He will be joined by Intel engineer MicRead More →

Train wreck image by Wystan via Flickr

Whenever a grid closes unexpectedly, there are always some users who are surprised and unprepared. They didn’t make offline backups of their builds, didn’t get their OAR or IAR exports, didn’t move their in-world social networks to a more permanent — or, at least, different — platform like an emailRead More →

MakeHuman, a free, open source software project that creates mesh avatars, has switched to the least restrictive license possible for the avatars created with its product. Content created with the software is licensed as CC0, which means that it can use used in any way, including commercial. Previously, MakeHuman putRead More →

Metaverse security took a big step forward today as Avination donated OpenSim code implementing an “export” permission setting. The company also worked together with Singularity viewer developers to add support for this new permission to the viewer. Today, OpenSim has three permissions — copy, transfer, and modify — that determine whatRead More →

When it comes to graphics, I’m not much of a power user. I mostly stick with cropping and scaling in Paint. People who know what they’re doing using Photoshop or its free, open source alternative — GIMP. When I absolutely positively need to use GIMP for something, I Google howRead More →

The top 40 OpenSim grids gained 1,458 regions this month, for a new total of 24,040 regions on these grids, the second highest total since we began tracking these numbers in the summer of 2009. These grids also reported a total of 18,061 active users.  A total of 224 gridsRead More →

The number of public OpenSim grids has more than doubled in 2012, from 98 at the start of the year, to 232 grids active this month. Here are some reasons why this is happening. Easier setup from established hosting providers Companies like Dreamhost Metaverse, SimHost, Virtual Reality, and many othersRead More →

Island Oasis, a commercial social grid, is inviting other grid owners to a grid summit to discuss griefing, copyright protection, creating an association for grid owners, and other issues. The First Annual Live Summit of Virtual Worlds will be held on March 15, 2013 on the Island Oasis grid, theRead More →

I’m still playing around with textures. After learning how to make seamless textures in GIMP with one click and a different kind of seamless texture with Texture Studio last weekend, I’ve been seeing potential textures everywhere. For example, I want to have stone walls in my build, but am worriedRead More →

Update Aug. 2016: DigiWorldz is now registered. Do you own a grid? Do you allow other users to upload content to your grid? Do you have legal license agreements on file for every script, texture and object on your grid? If your answers are yes, yes, and no, then get outRead More →

Press Release: Content Creators Union offers DMCA assistance to grid owners LINCOLN CITY, Ore. — The Content Creators Union was founded as a platform to collaboratively protect content creators intellectual property rights. The CCU has now developed a methodology in which it acts as an impartial third-party DMCA agent to helpRead More →

On-line education is using a flawed Creative Commons license Prominent universities are using a nonfree license for their digital educational works. That is bad already, but even worse, the license they are using has a serious inherent problem. When a work is made for doing a practical job, the usersRead More →

In general, Hypergrid Business uses the Associated Press Stylebook for news and feature stories. More stylistic leeway is allowed for first-person columns and editorials. Types of stories We accept submissions in the form of briefs, news stories, feature articles, how-tos, opinion essays, and listsicles. Please send story ideas to [email protected] andRead More →

As more and more people explore OpenSim, the content licensing issue comes up over and over again. It may be quite a puzzle for folks used to Second Life, where licensing is taken care of by the permissions system. In OpenSim, licensing and permissions are two different things. Permissions —Read More →

A few friends, colleagues, and fellow creators have a need to band together. Our intention is to gather creators and artists from all “virtual reality” platforms in order to collect, and organize factual information about rights and responsibilities of content creators. By working together, we believe that many of us will be ableRead More →

Over my twenty-year-plus career as a journalist, I’ve helped dozens of other writers get started — as an editor, and, prior to that, as an active member of the National Writers Union and the Society of Professional Journalists and other professional organizations. For example, at the SPJ, I headed upRead More →

Everyone knows I’m a big fan of OpenSim. I want it to grow big, with lots of different things to do, lots of different places to go, lots of people to meet. This requires that it get easier for people to set up their own grids and regions. For theRead More →

At first, it seemed to be another publicity disaster in the making. SpotON3D, a grid known for shooting itself in the foot when it comes to public relations, was spotted distributing content by Linda Kellie without crediting her for her work. SpotON3D is a closed, commercial grid that stands outRead More →

As of today, there are 100 grids in our Hyperica directory, all accessible – at least some of the time — by hypergrid teleport. That’s over 15,000 regions. My researchers and I have visited just a couple of hundred. We try to hit the welcome region of each grid, andRead More →

Content creators may worry about preserving their content in an era of ubiquitous hypergrid connectivity, but most users have a different worry — preserving their stuff. Hypergrid 1.5 rolled out security measures that protect rogue grid owners from dipping into the inventories of hypergrid visitors and causing trouble. But thereRead More →

Some newcomers to OpenSim have major concerns with hypergrid technology and these concerns should not be taken lightly. Many of these risks, however, are exaggerated, while others are present in all virtual worlds. These concerns may cause some to fear moving to OpenSim worlds. Creators and merchants, in particular, may fearRead More →

Tor Books, the largest science fiction publisher in the world, just announced that it will be removing digital rights management — DRM — from its ebooks. “Our authors and readers have been asking for this for a long time,” said president and publisher Tom Doherty in the announcement. “They’re aRead More →

With the recent explosion in new OpenSim grids, it will get harder and harder to get noticed. I’ve been talking about this to new gridmasters, and thought I’d share the advice a bit more widely. While I’m specifically writing for hypergrid-enabled grids, some of the same advice will apply toRead More →

The premise: There’s something addicting about putting together a virtual train set, getting the scenery just right, assembling the train itself. Even better is when you get to share it with people, or see how your set stacks up against others. This creates a business opportunity for a company —Read More →

[Editor: A couple of years ago, Chris Ravensoft was an actual paying customer for Second Life Enteprise, a behind-the-firewall version of Second Life, designed for companies who needed a secure, private space for internal collaboration, training, and rapid prototyping. In the summer of 2010, Linden Lab shut the project down.]Read More →