My Prediction for Virtual Worlds in 2011

At the end of each calendar year, it’s common for people to offer up their predictions for the new year ahead.

Such predictions are fun to make and fun to read.  Since I mostly swim in the waters of online communities and virtual worlds, most of the predictions I come across have to do with the future of technology.

I have a prediction for the coming year.  And while my prediction involves the technology landscape of virtual worlds, what I predict will happen actually has nothing to do with technology.

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Short Story: Part 2: “I am Anomaly”

I wrote this while sitting at home in the middle of the first blizzard of the season.  Which probably explains why there is so much snow and ice in this story.

It’s a follow-up to my story “Jetpack.”

I’m not sure where it’s all going, but I have some ideas.  If people like it, I’ll keep writing more.

Be warned.  There’s no real ending to this one.

Just a beginning.

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Hypergrid Adventurers Club meet #24+25: A Christmas Adventure on FrancoGrid

This past Sunday we made two excursions to a very special Christmas Festival on FrancoGrid.

The creative force behind the festival was Nani Ferguson, who also created the amazing Pandora region we visited in a previous tour.

This festival features a beautiful Christmas Village, free winter clothes, skiiing, ice skating, and a challenging Christmas Hunt full of freebies.

The festival will be open until Jan 19th, so be sure to check it out before it closes!

There are 3 full regions to explore (Winter, Pole Nord, and Noel), including a hidden underground chocolate maze full of surprises.

Read on for many photos and a full transcript of our discussions.

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Maps and HyperBase42: Charting the Hypergrid

The map on the left is my first attempt to summarize all the different grids and regions we’ve visited with the Hypergrid Adventurers Club.  It also shows the hypergrid routes we’ve taken in the course of our exploration.

I deliberately did not include things like coordinates and hypergrid addresses, since I wanted this map to be an overview and more of a conceptual outline.

We’ve been pretty busy, yes?

And there’s still so much more for us to explore.

Read on for help making your own maps, and learn about an exciting new project called HyperBase42.

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Hypergrid Adventurers Club meet #23: Exploring Nuclear Research at CERN

For today’s meeting, we explored the region CERN on New World Grid.

In real life, CERN (the European Organization for Nuclear Research) is one of the world’s largest and most respected centres for scientific research.  The instruments used at CERN are particle accelerators and detectors.  Accelerators boost beams of particles to high energies before they are made to collide with each other or with stationary targets. Detectors observe and record the results of these collisions.

The region CERN on New World Grid features detailed recreations of real life architecture at CERN as well self-guided tours of models of particle accelerators.

Read on for a full transcript and many photos of our adventure.

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Encouraging Exploration: Tales of Telehubs and Hypergrid Hops

We all have a desire to explore.  It’s in our nature as human beings to seek out novel things, both the conceptual and the physical.  To be human is to be an explorer.

Virtual worlds give us an opportunity to explore and discover new environments filled with new people.  And given the malleable nature of virtual worlds, we can design these environments in ways to specifically encourage exploration.

But trying to encourage people to explore by design is tricky.  Read on for some thoughts and examples.

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Hypergrid Adventurers Club meet #21+22: Exploring “The Grey Inn Between”

Today we took two tours of Vanish Seriath’s standalone grid “The Grey Inn Between.”

The Grey Inn was inspired by a story of “The Sandman” by Neil Gaiman, and it’s a magical place full of many beautiful creations.  Vanish gives his work away freely on The Grey Inn, and his blog has many helpful tutorials and downloadable free content for use in Opensim.

Read on for many photos and a full transcript of our discussions!

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Hypergrid Adventurers Club meet #20: Discussing web-based virtual worlds and exploring Jibe / Unity3D

At a recent club meeting, some folks mentioned they were interested in learning more about web-based virtual worlds and possibly taking a tour of one of them.

So today, our discussion focused on web-based virtual worlds.  And instead of traveling the Hypergrid, we made a special visit to a Jibe-based Unity3D world.

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Hypergrid Adventurers Club on IRC

At a recent meeting of the Hypergrid Adventurers Club we visited The Grey In Between, a beautiful standalone grid created by Vanish Seriath.  During our meeting, Vanish mentioned how it might be helpful for us to use IRC as an additional way to chat in realtime as a group.

Read on to learn more about IRC and how to use it to stay in touch during our adventures.

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Hypergrid Adventurers Club meet #18+19: Exploring Quebec on FrancoGrid, Discussing Content Licensing, and Discovering Crop Circles

In today’s two meetings we explored the region Quebec on FrancoGrid.  This region featured a library with interactive 3D exhibits, a planetarium with a UFO exhibit, and a replica of the Pont de Québec bridge.  We also had great discussions including one about content ownership and licensing in OpenSim.

Read on for a full transcript and many photos of our adventure.

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