MUVE Platform 2
For my second blog for MUV500 I will be covering my second multi-user virtual environment platform, which is the open simulator. Much like my second blog on Second Life I will be covering its uses and functionality.
What is the open simulator?
Unlike the Second Life platform which is hosted by Linden Labs, open simulator is an open source server software platform that allows anyone with the sufficient hardware to host their own private virtual world, similar to Second Life.
Open Simulator developers
Because open simulator is open source, it is developed by a community of people willing to give up their free time to contribute to the project.
Open Simulator Functionality
Using OpenSim anyone can download the software and host their own private virtual world. For example, someone can download the open simulator software and using their personal dedicated hardware they can run a version of the second life client. This would allow the user to do all the same things that can be done on Second Life such as building customizing their avatar.; but with the exception of not having the ability to access such resources like the Linden store.
Open Simulator performance
Since OpenSim software is usually hosted on small scale privately owned hardware, the performance depends on the hosts personal hardware, for example someone running a OpenSim world on a personal computer with low specs will greatly affect the in-world performance. Another performance issue to take into consideration would be the overall network quality of the host, which can affect in-world latency.
Someone using OpenSim can create a virtual world using the Second Life client and within that virtual world they can do much the same as someone using Second Life could do such as:
- Host classes for educational purposes
- Build virtual world like Second Life without the large fees
Comparison to Linden’s Second Life
Using Open Simulator compared to second life there is advantages and disadvantages. For example, OpenSim allows for more freedom then Second life, such as:
- No terms are policies, allows the creator of the world to do whatever they want.
- No expenses for creating new virtual worlds, compared to Second Life which can be quite expensive.
- Can have better latency and performance depending on the hardware and quality of the network used for creating the virtual world.
- Less people use OpenSim compared to Second life.
- In world can be buggy then Second Life.
- Overall community is smaller.
My feelings on Open Simulator
I feel Open Simulator would be great if you were someone seeking more freedom to do stuff within your virtual world and you didn’t want to pay the higher costs of owning land within second life. The downside to Open Simulator would have to be its much smaller user base then Second Life.