Fifteen years ago
this week, programmer Ron Britvich
launched version 1.0 of Active Worlds
. Started as an autonomous project of Worlds, Inc.
(a spinoff of educational gamesmaker Knowledge Adventure
), Active Worlds was one of the first and most ambitious attempts to create a 3D virtual community on the web.
Built on the architecture of Britvich's Worlds Chat
beta, Active Worlds debuted
in the form of Alphaworld
, a sunny green infinite plane open to public building
. In its opening years Alphaworld experienced a land rush of construction
, resulting in an anarchic starfish sprawl larger than the state of California
. A sister company, Circle of Fire, was soon founded to craft additional themed hubs
, and once individual ownership of worlds became possible the AW community spawned a veritable universe of hundreds of worlds
Although the company
has seen its ups and downs
since those heady times and its fortunes have slowly dwindled, the Active Worlds platform survives
to this day
. Look inside for a simple guide on how to log in to the (free) service, rundowns of the best worlds, links to essays analyzing the program's legacy, and other content summing up its venerable community
. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi
on Jul 4, 2010 -
candy for the eyes, ears, and brain
. Although the documentary was shown at SXSW(and other locations) earlier this year, i haven't seen much reference to it. profiles william gibson and his mind's view of what he envisioned as 'cyberspace.' be sure to click the 'don't click' link for an interactive map
that details some of the obscure points of the film.
and for those that already seen it, go get yourself some spooky, personalized M&Ms candy!
posted by donkeysuck
on Oct 31, 2001 -