Second Life (an online virtual 3D world) has been around a while now. It’s incredibly popular and even has its own economy. You can enter Second Life and “live” a life completely different from who you really are. It’s somewhat of a game, but it mimics real life as much as possible. Companies (mainly IBM) have been known to hold virtual meetings or conferences within the Second Life universe. But the main problem with Second Life is you have to download a rather large installation program and have to have some decent hardware to run it.
Second Life is about to get it’s first real competitor, LifePlace. Not only does does the virtual world look more amazing and real (and slightly unsettling), but all the visual imagery is rendered “in the cloud.” There is no installation. You will visit LifePlace through a web browser and all the rendering is done on the server side. So even if you don’t have amazing hardware with the latest and greatest graphics card, you will still be able to partake in the amazing world to be. You will even be able to stream it to a mobile device (the video below was captured on a Palm Treo). The technology is developed by a company called OTOY.
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