Wednesday, 26 November 2008

OpenSim + HyperGrid = The Metaverse

Yesterday was a fairly quiet day, but a momentous day in the development of the Metaverse. As of yesterday, the Hypergrid facility is now incorporated directly into the opensim build.

What is HyperGrid?

HyperGrid is the functionality to permit teleporting between any two opensims, whether they are in standalone or gridmode. HyperGrid is the glue that will bind all opensims into one vast Metaverse, and will allow intrepid travellers to wander this Metaverse at will.

HyperGrid is similar to the Open Grid Protocol (OGP) that is being developed to allow teleporting between opensims and the LL grids. However, HyperGrid has more functionality built in. For example, yesterday, when I successfully teleported from my opensim to the OSGrid, I arrived with all my appearance intact, and all my inventory was available too!!

There were some bugs however, which I am sure will be squashed pretty quickly. For example, because of the numbering of the regions on my grid, where the central sim has X and Y coordinates of 1000 1000 on the grid map, I found that when I teleported to the OSGrid I could not see the land or any avatars (just sky).

The reason for this 'all sky' bug is that the central sim in the OSGrid is numbered 10000 10000 and differences in the grid coordinates between two teleport points should not be greater than 4096. The temporary solution was for me to renumber the X-Y coordinates for the regions on my grid to be in the 8000s or 12000s. This problem was first noted during OGP tests, and is described in Jira SVC-2941.

However when I rotated the camera I could see the neighbouring sim, and when I crossed the region boundary to go there I suddenly saw myself, and all my appearance had persisted.

I was so excited by this development I left a marker pole on this sim, which was just the default 'Boob Island'. The marker I named: 'Rock Vacirca was Here', with a Description that reads: 'Arrived via the HyperGrid from Anubia'. When I returned for another test an hour later, a second marker pole had been erected by someone (have I started something here?).

I am currently writing a tutorial on setting up and using HyperGrid, so check the Main Tutorials page over the next day or two. In the meantime you can find more information on the HyperGrid on the OpenSim wiki page.

Note: I get very different results when viewing the HyperGrid wiki page with IE or Firefox. Firefox produces perfect results, while IE seems to overlay some of the graphics over some of the text, so you cannot read it. If you only have IE then right-click the page, and choose View Source, and you can read the missing text in there.