Interested in celebrating the holidays by playing with some free land on an OpenSim grid? There are plenty of options this holiday season, with many commercial grids rolling out promos, in addition to special events and celebrations. Interested in checking out InWorldz, the most popular OpenSim grid? West Wind Estates offers freeRead More →

The Association of Virtual World Educators is looking for $54,750 to develop a package of virtual environments designed to teach lessons in science and social studies. The group has created a Kickstarter page and a video to promote the project, which has a funding deadline of December 31. The educationalRead More →

This list only includes the 151 grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. SpotOn3D did not releaseRead More →

Late last summer, I had an idea for a hypergate script that would automatically calculate the distance to your destination’s address and, if it was too far away, send you to a mid-way transit gate on Hyperica, and then that gate would send you on to your destination. However, thisRead More →

There have been a series of grid outages lately — InWorldz was down for a day during a server move, JokaydiaGrid moved hosting companies, ReactionGrid shut down altogether. And now SpotON 3D has been down for a few days, blaming server problems. Plus, I’ve been reading about OpenSim users beingRead More →

I mentioned yesterday in an article about Utherverse that those guys have application sharing for their virtual world platform, but that there’s nothing equivalent for Second Life and OpenSim, except through third-party services. By coincidence, I was cleaning out my in-box yesterday, and found a link to just such aRead More →

The top 40 OpenSim grids lost a total of 3,007 regions over the past four weeks as a result of a massive cleanup on OSgrid, the largest public grid running on the OpenSim platform. The top 40 grids now have a total of 22,195 regions. Unlike most other grids, OSgrids runsRead More →

This list only includes the 150 grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. SpotOn3D did not release their statistics this month. ‘Regions change,’ ‘Users change’ and ‘Actives change’ refers to howRead More →

This list only includes the 173 grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. SpotOn3D did not releaseRead More →

A new online publication, Grid Press, is looking for writers to cover OpenSim grids. Contributor Linda Henson — better known as Linda Kellie of LindaKellie.com — urged writers to submit reviews of grids and of individual regions, to write about their virtual lives, and to contribute news and opinion articles.Read More →

The top 40 largest OpenSim grids gained a record-breaking 2,177 regions since mid-August, the single biggest monthly gain in history. The new regions pushed the grids to 23,952 total regions, also a new high. OSGrid was responsible for almost a quarter of the growth, with 498 new regions, for aRead More →

This list only includes the 156 grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. ‘Regions change,’ ‘Users change’ and ‘Actives change’ refers to how many more regions, registered users, and active usersRead More →

Note: Vivox now has an online form that OpenSim grid owners and hosting providers can use to request access credentials. Vivox is expanding its support for the OpenSim-based metaverse, with a larger team of employees supporting a growing number of grids. Previously, the only way for OpenSim grid owners to get Vivox voiceRead More →

This list only includes the 158 grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. SpotOn3D did not releaseRead More →

Today, we counted exactly 200 public grids running on some version of the OpenSim software that were active this month, totaling 23,190 regions, 269,783 registered users, and 18,217 active monthly users.  This does not include regions and users on about a quarter of these grids that didn’t publish any statistics, nor on the unknownRead More →

This past spring, Linden Lab warned third party viewer developers to drop support for OpenSim if they wanted to get access to new features. Back then, a back door was left open, in that users could modify the command path used to launch the viewer so that it accessed OpenSimRead More →

Florida-based ReactionGrid, a pioneer in OpenSim hosting for corporations and educators, is scaling back on its OpenSim business in favor of its Unity-based Jibe platform, and considering closing down its namesake grid. “We will focus on very high level OpenSim work only,” ReactionGrid co-founder and CEO Kyle Gomboy told HypergridRead More →

The Phoenix Firestorm team has released its latest update for OpenSim, part of its plans to have two separate builds, one for OpenSim and another for Second Life, according to a press release on the team’s blog. The build for Second Life was postponed because pathfinding isn’t ready and HavokRead More →

Note: See comments below for some warnings. It’s been in the works for a couple of years now, and finally launched quietly last month — now the Free Open Grid project from Free Open University hopes to get 200,000 schools into OpenSim. As part of its initial push, the groupRead More →

This list only includes the 142 grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. SpotOn3D did not releaseRead More →

Press release: Daden builds 3D teaching environment for City Academy Norwich Birmingham UK — Within weeks of being commissioned by City Academy Norwich, immersive solution specialists at Dadem Ltd. have designed and delivered a new 3D virtual teaching environment for City Academy Norwich. The environment consists of a 1:1 model of theRead More →

I had fun recently playing with using the Xbox Kinect sensor paired with OpenSim. The project I work on is called PLANE, Pathways for Learning Anywhere, anytime — a Network for Educators. One of our core missions is connecting educators from all sectors such as state run, independent and CatholicRead More →

For most people, NPCs — non-player characters — are the princesses you need to save in video games, dragons you need to defeat, and shopkeepers who give advice about how to proceed in your quests. But for David Prior, CTO at Simudyne , NPCs are a way to model emergency evacuation plans forRead More →

This list only includes the 140 grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. SpotOn3D did not releaseRead More →

Firestorm will have support for OpenSim grids, the developers announced today. Firestorm is a third-party viewer that can be used to access Linden Lab’s Second Life grid, and which also has some existing support for OpenSim grids, as well. However, licensing issues have forced Linden Lab to restrict third-party usersRead More →

Press release: Avination donates often requested function to OpenSimulator LONDON — Avination Virtual Limited announced today that it has released code for llCastRay to the open source OpenSimulator project, as promised at Linux Day in Berlin last month. “Once again, Avination wants to set an example with the release ofRead More →

Press release: Piney Grove Middle School students complete first project in the NOBLE world ATLANTA, GA – Students at Piney Grove Middle School in Cumming, Georgia recently completed their first learning adventure in the NOBLE Virtual World, a 3D virtual learning environment designed especially for project-based learning. NOBLE is availableRead More →

This list only includes the 131 grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. SpotOn3D did not releaseRead More →

Some grids reported an increase in logins or registrations yesterday during Second Life’s protracted network outage. According to InWorldz co-founder David Daeschler, also known as Tranquillity Dexler in-world, the grid saw a peak of 352 simultaneous users on Thursday afternoon, at a time when the grid normally averages between 200 andRead More →

Press release: 19.4 million Euro project to advance the workings of virtual worlds Budapest, Hungary — A consortium of 32 organisation from six countries has come together to advance the workings of virtual worlds. By creating a standard interface, the METAVERSE1 project made it possible for information to be shared between differentRead More →

Press release: X-Avatar offers new OpenSim module and real life age verification Augsburg, Germany – X-Avatar has launched a new addon module for OpenSim regions which enables region owners to block access to minors. In addition X-Avatar also added “real life” age verification which meets the strictest international youth protectionRead More →

The number of small OpenSim grids continued to climb this month, as companies, schools and individuals continued to strike out on their own. We’re tracking 285 grids, of which 169 are currently active — an increase of 26 grids from last month’s 143 active grids. Meanwhile, the top 40 public OpenSimRead More →

This list only includes grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. SpotOn3D did not release their statisticsRead More →

Member Turnover from Period One to Period Two

New research released in March shows that OpenSim development is becoming increasingly led by entrepreneurs, hobbyists, and large corporations. While entrepreneurs remain important in the development of OpenSim, hobbyists are becoming more essential, said report authors Robin Teigland and Zeynep Yetis of the Stockholm School of Economics and Paul M. Di Gangi of Loyola University in Maryland.Read More →

This list includes all grids that have been active this month. Please note that some grids may only be up part-time, especially the smaller ones. Click here for more details. Click here for intellectual property protection info. If a grid is hypergrid-enabled, the hypergrid address is the same as theRead More →

OpenSim is making headway as a viable alternative to Second Life. About 98 percent of the functionality of Second Life is present in OpenSim. The remaining 2 percent primarily deals with vehicle physics. Although it is still considered “alpha” software, OpenSim hosting is sold, and teachers, students, and businesses are taking advantage.Read More →

When asked about the difference between Second Life and OpenSim I frequently explain that, for enterprise users, having a region in Second Life is a lot like having a page on Facebook — and using OpenSim is like having your own website. This was recently underscored for me by myRead More →

Press release: Forsyth County Schools has selected Dreamland Metaverse ATLANTA, GA – Forsyth County Schools announced today that it has selected Dreamland Metaverse to host the NOBLE Virtual World on the OpenSim platform. The metro Atlanta district, with 35 schools and 38,000 students, is the first major school system in theRead More →

This list only includes grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. SpotOn3D did not release their statisticsRead More →

Running OpenSim on your home computer in, in theory, a great way to have as much virtual land as you want — for free. In practice, it can take quite a bit of time and effort to set it up. I normally have my teenage daughter do it, but withRead More →

Zoe, a prototype AI bot, lives in her own house on OpenSim. (Image courtesy David Burden.)

[Editor: Recent OpenSim upgrades have substantially expanded support for NPCs — non-player characters — also known as bots or AIs. NPCs are typically used in games, as enemies for players to defeat, or characters who help the players in their quests. However, they are also increasingly being used for business.]Read More →

The U.S. military will be testing OpenSim’s scaling capabilities tomorrow, on the MOSES test grid. MOSES — Military Open Simulator Enterprise Strategy — is an OpenSim-based world run by the U.S. Army Simulation and Training Technology Center. The world is used by researchers both in and out of the defense industry. Tomorrow, aRead More →

Over the course of two years, we designed and ran a simulation for the University of Richmond based upon Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Fall of the House of Usher” in the virtual world of Second Life. I wanted to enable my classes to change the ending of Poe’s tale, ifRead More →

OpenSim’s top 40 public grids gained 580 new regions over the past month, hitting a new record high of 23,231 regions. Meanwhile, the total number of active public grids is now 118, with 20 new grids added to our list this month — not counting private grids, Sim-on-a-Sticks, and gridsRead More →

This list only includes grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. SpotOn3D did not release their statisticsRead More →

Credit card thieves have figured out a way to steal money from OpenSim grid owners. They take the credit cards, and use them to purchase virtual currency from the grids. Then they turn around and redeem the currency for cash before the card holder notices the theft and complains. TheRead More →

One of the founders of the OpenSim project, Adam Frisby, is now focusing his efforts on the Unity platform — because it can scale better, the viewer runs on multiple devices, and it has better graphics. His former firm, DeepThink, has been acquired by the Sine Wave Company, which is nowRead More →

If you like building — or need to build for your work or school — and you find Second Life cramped and expensive, OpenSim is a great option. But where do you start? There are over a hundred active public grids, dozens of hosting providers… for someone new to OpenSim,Read More →

Today, Hamlet Au wrote a column suggesting that the OpenSim user base is shrinking — and used Hypergrid Business numbers to support his position. The short answer to his question is: No, OpenSim usage is not falling, and the numbers do not support this. In fact, it is growing quiteRead More →

There’s been a lot written lately about how SOPA and PIPA would affect virtual worlds including Second Life. The legislation would allow copyright holders to shut down access to Internet domains where pirated content is published — or even where there are links to other sites that have pirated content.Read More →

New research released today dispels the myth that OpenSim is the sole product of work by people who expected no personal financial gain — academics, employees of large corporations, and volunteers working out of the goodness of their hearts. In fact, entrepreneurs played a very important part in the earlyRead More →

OpenSim’s top 40 public grids gained 1,056 new regions over the past month, hitting a new record high of 22,651 regions. Meanwhile, the total number of active public grids is now over 90, with 16 new grids added to our list this month. There are also an unknown number ofRead More →

This list only includes grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. SpotOn3D did not release their statisticsRead More →

Note: Updated with new contact email address. Ever since Vivox made its hosted voice service available for free to small and non-profit grids on December 23, OpenSim grids and individual region owners have quickly adopted the technology. Large commercial grids like Avination (which had Vivox first, several months ago) and KitelyRead More →

A few days ago I saw a Tweet, that said something like, “I looked at OpenSim, but some guy said he would steal all my stuff. So, no thanks!” In fact, that attitude comes up a lot on discussion boards and in other forums. There’s a perception that OpenSim isRead More →

In November, I led a well-attended three-hour workshop, Second Life is Dead – Prepare for an OpenSim Future at the 17th International Conference on Online Learning in Orlando, Florida. My basic point was that, right now, Second Life as a product for educators is actually dead unless something dramatically changesRead More →

This list only includes grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. SpotOn3D did not release their statisticsRead More →

This list only includes grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. SpotOn3D did not release updated dataRead More →

Press Release: 3rdRockGid.com launches Occupy World Peace Virtual Initiative The owners of 3rdRockGrid.com have thrown their support and solidarity behind the efforts of the Occupy protest movement sweeping the world. “From our collective position, this is not only a noble step, but a necessary one in order to bring theRead More →

Even as OpenSim implementation continues to grow, a constant remains: there is no viewer tailored specifically for OpenSim as it comes direct from OpenSimulator.org. It’s discouraging, and it’s easy to cite the nearly million lines of code that are simply too complex to unravel as the culprit, yet the reasonsRead More →

OpenSim developers are discussing ways to combat damaging patent litigation, including changing the OpenSim license to deter potential patent trolls. The Overte Foundation, which holds the OpenSim licenses, recently released a contributors’ license agreement for its developers. One possible anti-troll protection measure would be to change the agreement so thatRead More →

This list only includes grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. “Regions change,” “Users change” and “ActivesRead More →

Several major OpenSim features, including mesh, which were previously available only in experimental releases of OpenSim are now part of the standard OpenSim release, numbered 0.7.2. “Despite having a minor point release number, it actually contains a very large number of features and fixes,” said OpenSim core developer Justin Clark-Casey inRead More →

Viewer developers are no longer restricted from working on OpenSim server code, OpenSim core developer and Overte Foundation president Justin Clark-Casey announced Friday. Previously, viewer developers had to wait six months after working on viewer code before they could work on OpenSim. The Overte Foundation — which oversees OpenSim developmentRead More →

The OpenSim hosting industry is still young, and, though it is developing quickly, still lacking in experience and maturity. But it doesn’t mean that customers have to settle for substandard service. I’ve tried out several vendors in the past, and will continue to do so for both public and privateRead More →

This list only includes grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. “Regions change,” “Users change” and “ActivesRead More →

Will free land destroy grids? There will probably a winnowing out of grids that continue to charge for residential land without offering enough additional perceived value. But the end result will, I believe, a net benefit for OpenSim. More money for content creators Retail consumers have only so much moneyRead More →

OpenSim development — like that of any open source project — is very much focused on what developers want to do. They are, after all, volunteers, they don’t take orders. That leaves business users in a quandary — especially those without the technical skills or budgets to do their ownRead More →

Second Life builders and designers coming over to OpenSim might think that it’s the same thing, except for the lack of support for some high-end vehicle physics scripting commands — and bigger prims. In fact, OpenSim actually offers some unique benefits that designers should be ready to take advantage of.Read More →

Image by jscreationzs at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I attended UMass in the early eighties when access to DARPAnet first became available to students. In the beginning, all we had was terminal-based FTP access to download TeX markup documents that we could send to the batch printers. It wasn’t until almost ten years later that Mosaic based graphicalRead More →

Two OpenSim grids have been attacked — OpenNeuland and Wilder Westen — and the attackers may be going after others, said Kai Ludwig, director of Germany’s TalentRaspel virtual worlds Ltd. and owner of the two grids. The attack hit Open Neuland yesterday and Wilder Westen today, he told Hypergrid Business. “It’s probably bot-based,Read More →

Free, large, Creative Commons-licensed content collection, which includes avatars, clothing, furniture, buildings, scripts, plants, terrains, textures, and hair and other attachments.Read More →

I have been using OpenSim since October, 2008. The software is still in an alpha stage of development, but it has come a long way, and its usage has exploded, and will continue to do so. Linden Labs has basically stopped focusing on education — which has also included droppingRead More →

Thanks to a “small bounty” from Birmingham, U.K.-based Daden Limited, OpenSim has new NPC functionality — otherwise known as non-player characters or bots. “Having this functionality broken was becoming a real pain for us, as having NPCs and autonomous avatars in virtual worlds is a lot of what we are about,” DavidRead More →

This list only includes grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. “Regions change,” “Users change” and “ActivesRead More →

Image: maple / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

In recent months, the amount of innovation coming out of the OpenSim community has been staggering. Hypergrid travel is not only more secure, but now supports cross-grid friendships, messages, and landmarks. OpenSim providers are hosting their regions on-demand and in public (and private) clouds, offering full regions for under $10Read More →

There have been several attempts over the past year to create a viewer for Second Life and OpenSim based virtual environments that would run in a browser. I’ve tried to write about them all, from Linden Lab partnering with GaiKai to provide a server-side rendered and streamed experience of SecondLife to TipodeanRead More →

OSGrid, the largest grid running on the OpenSim software, is celebrating its fourth birthday this weekend with parties, games, tours, and training classes. OSGrid currently has 6,896 regions and more than 63,000 registered users. By comparison, the next-largest grid, ScienceSim, has around 1,800 regions — but many of those are scalabilityRead More →

Update: Please people, stop linking to this post! Unless you are actually an OpenSim user this is not relevant to you at all! This article is about a very, very, narrow niche use of Unity that’s only relevant to a small handful of people. I understand that Unity is not aRead More →

It’s been a record-breaking months for OpenSim, with the top 40 grids passing 16,000 regions and 200,000 users for the first time in history. The total number of regions on these 40 largest public grids was 16,959, an increase of 1,669 regions since mid June — the biggest single-month increaseRead More →

This list only includes grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. SpotOn3D did not respond to ourRead More →

Intel’s Distributed Scene Graph — the technology that allows OpenSim to handle thousands of avatars on a single region – is now available for download. In the future, the technology will become part of the standard distribution of OpenSim, core developer Justin Clark-Casey told Hypergrid Business. “No timeframe on this, though,”Read More →

Japan’s 3Di Inc., the first vendor to release a business-friendly Web-based viewer for OpenSim, has cut back its development work on the platform in favor of Flash-based virtual environments. “Apart from our existing deployments, we’ve scaled back new development on OpenSim,” 3Di technical group manager Norman Lin told Hypergrid Business.Read More →

HGExchange, a new online marketplace for OpenSim goods launched today, with live delivery to OSGrid, MyOpenGrid, and Haven. It is not the first online marketplace to deliver items to multiple OpenSim grids.  Cariama delivers products to 3rd Rock Grid, Avination, InWorldz, Sim World and UFS Grid as well as to SecondRead More →

OpenSim’s volunteer developers have launched a foundation, the non-profit Overte Foundation, which expected to solve the licensing problems that keep OpenSim server developers from talking to viewer developers. “One of the main reasons for creating such a foundation is so that we can drop the six month contribution barrier between OpenSimulatorRead More →

Jibe is a new, Unity 3D-based virtual environment created by ReactionGrid, one of the leading OpenSim hosting vendors. Many people confuse the two platforms, but they are very different environments. In fact, Jibe has very little in common with OpenSim, and quite a bit in common with other browser-based virtualRead More →

An educator has released a free, 160-page “quick start” guide this week. The guide is a complete instruction manual for schools — or other institutions — looking to set up OpenSim-based environments from scratch. The guide was created by David Deeds, IT manager and teacher at the Changchun American InternationalRead More →

This list only includes grids that have published usage data this month. Some grids may have been down for maintenance, relocation, or were shut down since our survey last month. OpenLifeGrid does not consider themselves an OpenSim grid and does not publish usage data. SpotOn3D did not respond to ourRead More →

Press release: Intel Announces New Research and Partnership Efforts at Annual R&D Event Will release open source packages: To increase avatar capacity on an OpenSim region 20 times, allowing thousands of simultaneous visitors To accelerate rendering of photo realistic images by 100 percent on Intel systems MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. –Read More →

You cannot compare Second Life and OpenSim. One is a social world. The other is an open source piece of server software. You can’t even compare Second Life to individual grids using OpenSim as their backend software. Second Life has around a million users logging in each month, while theRead More →

Press Release: Designing Digitally, Inc. Wins 2011 Air Force Research Lab Virtual World Contract FRANKLIN, OH– Teaching students how to build airplanes, robots and simulations is serious business, but Designing Digitally, Inc. plans to make it a game — literally. Designing Digitally, Inc., the web-based training firm that specializes in e-learning, virtualRead More →

Developers of the Aurora Sim version of OpenSim are building a hypergrid bridge to mainline OpenSim, said Enrico Ranucci, head of New Voice, d.i., an Italian technology company that’s been in business since 2005. Aurora Sim uses a different version of hypergrid, called IWC — InterWorldConnector — to allow teleportation betweenRead More →