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MUVE Platform – OpenSim

30/04/2011
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MUVE Platform – OpenSimulator

“What is OpenSim?

OpenSim is a platform for operating a virtual world, and supports multiple independent regions connecting to a single centralized grid. This is somewhat similar to the web, where anyone can run their own web server, tied together through the internet. It can also be used to create a private grid, analogous to a private intranet.

What is a region?

A region is what you see when you log into OpenSim. It is the physical place (well, virtual physical space) where avatars move and interact. It is a square patch of land which may contain an island, mountains, a plain, buildings, etc., or just an ocean.

What is the grid?

The grid is the level that organizes the regions and their positions in the world, and handles things that need to exist across regions, such as a user’s inventory. You can think of it as similar to the world map” (FAQs)

 

Who is it developed by? –

“OpenSimulator is an open source project, and is powered by the community members that devote time and energy to the effort. There are many ways to participate and contribute to the community” (The OpenSim Main Page), (The Development Team)

 

What functionality does it provide? –

“OpenSimulator is an open source multi-platform, multi-user 3D application server. It can be used to create a virtual environment (or world) which can be accessed through a variety of clients, on multiple protocols. OpenSimulator allows virtual world developers to customize their worlds using the technologies they feel work best – we’ve designed the framework to be easily extensible.” (The OpenSim Main Page)

How well does it run? –

“OpenSimulator is written in C#, running both on Windows over the .NET framework and on *ix machines over the Mono framework. The source code is released under a BSD License, a commercially friendly license to embed OpenSimulator in products.” (The OpenSim Main Page)

How is it used?-

“Out of the box, OpenSimulator can be used to simulate virtual environments similar to Second Life™, given that it supports the core of SL’s messaging protocol. As such, these virtual worlds can be accessed with the regular SL viewers. However, OpenSimulator is neither a clone of Second Life‘s server nor does it aim at becoming such a clone. On the contrary, OpenSimulator lacks support for many of the game-specific features of Second Life (on purpose), while pursuing innovative directions towards becoming the bare bones, but extensible, server of the 3D Web.” (The OpenSim Main Page)

How does it compare to others? –

“Out of the box, OpenSimulator can be used to simulate virtual environments similar to Second Life™, given that it supports the core of SL’s messaging protocol. As such, these virtual worlds can be accessed with the regular SL viewers. However, OpenSimulator is neither a clone of Second Life’s server nor does it aim at becoming such a clone. On the contrary, OpenSimulator lacks support for many of the game-specific features of Second Life (on purpose), while pursuing innovative directions towards becoming the bare bones, but extensible, server of the 3D Web.”  (The OpenSim Main Page)

What are your impressions of it? –

Once again, a platform with so much to offer, and it’s all free. This philosophy carries on from the original concept of the Internet and the World Wide Web being freely available (well almost). They are are basically connecting the users around the world, for the sake of connecting the users around the world. OpenSim provides the platform to achieve this connectivity in 3D. It’s a complex platform, and requires some time to grasp just what’s at the tip of the iceberg. It’s also constantly developed, making it a highly dynamic grid. The fact that so many developers are working on it, indicates that it’s made up of highly dedicated people. Great to see “Art for Art’s Sake”, or is OpenSim simply a true science?

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