IBM and Linden Lab Interoperability Announcement

This is a historic day for Second Life, and for virtual worlds in general. IBM and Linden Lab have announced that research teams from the two companies successfully teleported avatars from the Second Life Preview Grid into a virtual world running on an OpenSim server, marking the first time an avatar has moved from one virtual world to another. It’s an important first step toward enabling avatars to pass freely between virtual worlds, something we’ve been working toward publicly since the formation of the Architecture Working Group in September 2007. These are still early days, however, so amid all the excitement, we thought it would be helpful to clarify exactly what we’ve done — and what still lies ahead.

Q: What did Linden Lab and IBM accomplish with this experiment?
Researchers from IBM and Linden Lab teleported avatars from the Second Life Preview Grid to an OpenSim virtual world.

Q: Why is that significant?
It marks the first time an avatar has moved from one virtual world to another, an event with implications for the entire virtual world industry. As the name suggests, the Open Grid Protocol used in the project enables interoperability between virtual worlds. With this experiment, we’ve taken a first step toward not just interconnecting Second Life with other virtual worlds, but other virtual worlds with one another. An open standard for interoperability based on the Open Grid Protocol would allow users to cross freely from one world to another, just as they can go from one Web site to another on the Internet today.

Q: Did you make a video of the event?
Yes we did:

[ ?posts_id=1066735&dest=-1]

You can also download the high-quality version.

Q: Can other virtual worlds move forward with this research on their own?
Yes. In fact, Linden Lab will start an Open Grid Public Beta in July, making the Second Life Preview Grid available with Open Grid Protocol support for login and teleport. This first phase of the Open Grid Public Beta is designed for developers who want to test OpenSim interoperability with Second Life. IBM will contribute back to the community the enhancements it made to the OpenSim source code to support the Open Grid Protocol. In addition, an Open Grid version of the Second Life Viewer will be available for beta participants by Linden Lab. For information on interoperability testing, visit:

Q: What is the Architecture Working Group (AWG)?
The AWG is an open forum whose mission is to enable virtual-world interoperability by defining and developing the Open Grid Protocol. For more information on the Architecture Working Group see:

Q: What is the Second Life Preview Grid?
The Second Life Preview Grid is an experimental grid completely disconnected from the Main Grid, where all Second Life Residents live, work and play. Nothing that happens on the Preview Grid affects the Main Grid.

Q: Can I visit the Preview Grid?
Yes, though it requires a different Second Life client, which you can download here: It’s important to note, Residents still won’t be able to teleport to OpenSim from the Preview Grid.

Q: Can regular SL users teleport to an OpenSim server now?
No. This experiment was conducted on a test grid under controlled conditions. Second Life users cannot currently teleport to OpenSim, or vice-versa.

Q: Did the avatar transfer any assets (skins, objects) between Second Life and OpenSim?
No assets were transferred in this experiment – only the avatar itself.

Q: When the avatar teleported between worlds, did it look the same in both places?
No, the clothes and attachments in Second Life were not transferred in this experiment. Thus avatars appeared as default, “ruthed,” avatars.

Q: Is it possible to transfer assets between Second Life and OpenSim?
Not with the Open Grid Protocol. So far only Login and Teleport have been implemented.

Q: When will Second Life Residents be able to teleport to OpenSim servers, or other virtual worlds?
We don’t know exactly. We’re working toward that goal but we’re still very much in the experimental phase.

Q: What is Linden Lab’s ultimate goal with these experiments?
Linden Lab sees interoperability as essential for virtual worlds to reach their full potential. In addition, interoperability will enhance Resident experience and the new architecture will improve scalability and stability.

Q: How will Linden Lab prevent property from being copied into other virtual worlds?
We’re paying extremely close attention to that question. We will be designing this with the Second Life community to ensure their needs are met. We want to stress that when it does become possible to move avatars between worlds, we will take the utmost care to protect the rights of Second Life property owners and creators. Linden Lab will not design a system that lets people openly violate the permissions of SL goods and take them to other worlds. We recognize that intellectual property is the engine that drives Second Life, and we are completely committed to preserving the qualities that make Second Life the unique, innovative and dynamic place that it is today.

For those of you who have more questions, feel free to stop in at Zero Linden’s weekly office hours. And if you’re a developer who wants to get directly involved, we encourage you to stay tuned for more info on the Open Grid Public Beta, which starts later this month.

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150 Responses to IBM and Linden Lab Interoperability Announcement

  1. Sans says:

    Exciting news! Congrats! 🙂

  2. taotakashi says:

    Q: Has the code finally being made available? 😉

  3. Kenny Humby says:


  4. Ann Otoole says:

    Your going to take more than the “utmost care” in respect to IP rights you do not own. You are going to make it impossible for any transfer to take place for any item where the permissions are not explicitly granted on an item by item basis. (should not be that difficult to code but now your going to have to deal with open sourcers that will negate these controls so it has to be server side and that code can never be open sourced. And that means your going to have to make it impossible for a hacked client to send false information. I.e.; the majority of code goes server side other than rendering) Since you are going to have to work on the permissions system there are a number of opportunities for improvement that can make a lot of issues less devastating to the success of Secondlife. I recommend you begin conducting these meetings in respect to all this in a more public fashion so all the creators of Secondlife can have their rightful say in the matter. We are not all Luddites but most everyone has concerns given the existing state of affairs in Secondlife in respect to rampant and blatant IP theft.

    But congratulations on your test. I find it interesting you proceed with such tests prior to engineering the complete solution. Perhaps you need to learn about software engineering and the aspect of how requirements control the developers and not the other way around.

  5. James Benedek says:

    Can’t wait till it goes public! 🙂 🙂 🙂 Keep up the good work Linden Labs!!!

  6. Just a thought says:

    Erm – in what way does this differ from the report over a month ago at ?

  7. Hello,

    When will it be for everyone ?
    What is the next step in interoperability ?

    Regards from Paris.

    Gilles Misrahi.

  8. les says:

    How very cutting edge! (lies)

    What is with the propaganda machine these days? Who’s all this window dressing for?

  9. Cocoanut Koala says:

    “Linden Lab will not design a system that lets people openly violate the permissions of SL goods and take them to other worlds.”

    Glad to hear that our items will retain the permissions we set on them.

    And I am holding you to this!

    I hope that we will also be able to choose whether our items can go to other worlds at all, particularly on a grid-by-grid basis.

    It would not be a wonderful thing to have one’s items taken to worlds one cannot even gain access to.

    Will we?


  10. taotakashi says:

    I wanted to point out that this work is quite the beginning and not really useful to anybody else than developers. It is a first but important step to make interoperability happen. Before anything goes live or beta which makes sense to end users some time will pass.

    Other important steps in this area is work happening in the pyogp project which soon might have a basic agent domain implementation and has a login script already.

    You can find it at

    There is a mailing list and irc channel available as well.

  11. Excellent news. Bring on the future. 😀

  12. Ahab Schmo says:

    Sounds cool, but nice way to cannibalize your own business!!

  13. Lots of discussion has taken place the past few weeks, if you missed it. Look through the links below for more info:

    Forum/jira discussions:

    Technical discussions:

  14. That should have been:

  15. Tepic Harlequin says:

    Fascinating Jim, it’s a SIM, but not as we know it… (raise one eyebrow)

    Very interesting experiment – but I guess only a small step, after all what are our AVs but a combination of ourselves, the appearance we have chosen, the things we wear and the abilities we have from the attachments we chose. So, if we teleport over to OpenSim, but lose all but the ourselves component…. ummm… well 🙂

    Still, it sounds fun, and I look forward to seeing what happens next.

    PS the video was hilarious, and well worth watching!

  16. Sling Trebuchet says:

    What we saw was basically a logout and a login back to back.

    The permission system needs redesign even for SL as it stands.
    Perhaps extensions for inter-grid would include
    – Permission to take an item component to a grid that is certified in a trust system – *a trust system with real teeth*.
    – Permission to take an item component to another grid

    Created by someone with no identity in a particular grid??

    Group functions would not extend outside of a grid I suspect!
    Some global grid-integrated IM system would be required.
    Friends would need a revamp.

    Cash? Ooooooooh

  17. Pingback: Seamless teleport between virtual worlds at Mobitrends

  18. catcotton says:

    “Q: Can regular SL users teleport to an OpenSim server now?
    No. This experiment was conducted on a test grid under controlled conditions. Second Life users cannot currently teleport to OpenSim, or vice-versa.”

    Good keep testing it; and I do mean this; every bit of code. Because I do not want to log in and find my L$ or inventory taken/ripped off because of yet another programing mistake or security flaw not detected by LL.

    @13 agreed.


  19. Sling, nope that was NOT what you saw at all. The realXtend viewer folk have ben doing logout/login for some time now. What this blog entry discusses is login to Second LIfe via the SL beta login server, and then teleport from one world to the other without logging out or back in.

    The protocols for the login and teleport are on the wiki. They are part of the new Open Grid Protocols that the AWG (Linden Lab, IBM, and company) are designing to allow any and all virtual worlds to inter-operate.

  20. Jonathen Snow says:

    Hillarious 🙂
    There is already a program around that lets you save your created content to your harddrive to re-rezz it again on another OpenSimulator based platform.
    There already several grids running, based on the reversed engineering by OpenSimulator.
    These two will be combined in the near future and my guess is that it will beat Linden to it. Simply because opensource groups that do not have to protect their financial potential interests have more freedom to develop really what the people want.
    Also I have seen contributions of vision for the future that go further then current Lindens. The good thing is that this cannot be stopped anymore. Linden was the pioneer but has lost its connection to the people completely. If something is proven then it is that people can win from companies if they want to and are with many.
    Yes comments are deleted and people are banned for life on this Blog. But it won’t stop the Mayority. I will celebrate the OpenSimulator project when it reaches 5 years.
    In the end, Democracy and a little anarchy will win 🙂
    Never the less, Linden will be in the history books as the ones who created it and for that, and that only, I thank them from the bottom of my heart.

  21. Geeze, Jonathen, read the chat logs at the URLs in messages 14 and 15. The OpenSImulator folk have been working with Linden Lab and IBM as part of the AWG. Zha Ewry of IBM (in Torley’s video), founder of AW Groupies, wrote login code for OpenSim to handle the login from Second Life a few weeks ago and another IBM researcher is an important “core” member of the OpenSimulator team. You’ll see members of the OpenSimulator team at almost every weekly AWG meeting. Its not like people from Linden Lab and OPen Simulator aren’t collaborating on this project.

  22. Catten Carter says:

    the realXtend guys have had teleports between SL and Opensim written on their homepage as an implemented function for a long time – I regret I did not test it my self, only via login/logout

  23. WOW! That is a nice announcement. Congratulations and best of luck with the project.

  24. Dave Bellman says:

    Well done! Awesome stuff – brilliant news! Bring it on!

  25. Pingback: Second Life » IBM and Linden Lab Interoperability Announcement

  26. Catten, no, this was a rewrite of both the Second Life server and the OpenSim server to allow a single login in one world and then a TP to the other world without logging out of the first one. RealXtend fakes it by logging out of Second LIfe and then logging into OpenSim. And realXtend’s method won’t allow sharing of ANY assets. Once the permissions system is implemented and tested (see messages 14 and 15 for links to the discussions about this), there is the possibility of sharing at least SOME assets with other worlds during teleport.

    I’m certain that realXtend will implement this method as soon as possible, however.

  27. Jonathen Snow says:

    @22 Saijanai Kuhn:
    Oh Jee, I did not know that. Thank you for that information.
    But if the ones who decided to create a grid system besides the Linden grid are now slowly becoming a part of the Linden Dynasty, then I am afriad I have to give up my hopes that something good will come to the world, for now.
    Oh well, a new generation of real smart coders will rise and make this system really suitable for world usage. It will only take a little longer and I only hope that it will happen before the power of Linden is Microsoft sized. Because then it will really become hard. Still even then I will have hopes as even with the power of microsoft, Firefox is slowly winning after all. I just hope I live long enough to see it come to something really nice and not corporate forced upon the crowds like it is now. Just like the whole reason why the current 2D internet is great. Power to the majority of people instead of the companies with the most money.
    But maybe I just have a too twisted mind and is my frustration about Linden fuzzing my view too much. I think I better call my schrink 🙂

  28. Dilbert Dilweg says:

    This is Excelent news!!! Yes!
    Way to go everyone involved!!

  29. Ryou says:

    WOOOOW nice test and with succes.

  30. Hooray!! This is the kind of news I was hoping was hoping would be the focus of many of the SL5B events!

  31. Ener Hax says:

    fantastic and scary! scary in that the future is unknown and the rules of today’s business isl will change. but exciting in that the future comes regardless of any one person’s anxiety.

    to open metaverses to each other will ultimately result in a wonderful collaboration and freedom for even greater opportunities just like the web has now. perhaps one day, the Lindens i earn isl will allow me to buy land and operate in an other metaverse.

    there is no doubt to IBM’s commitment to sl and this type of work is what keeps sl on the forefront, i would hardly agree that sl and Linden Labs will pass away into the history books and become less relevant. i would point to those that said the same of IBM when they did not think the personal PC would catch on. looks like IBM adapted and is doing pretty well.

    congrats to the passion of all those involved and bravo to a significant accomplishment 🙂

  32. Cotytto Bonetto says:

    Oh Great! Now we can fly off into oblivion and get grey screened in a whole different virtual world. Did they test this on a Mac with a 2 wire router? 😀

    Seriously…this is a very big step for virtual worlds. Congratulations gang!

  33. Larkum Woodget says:

    My feelings about this are a little mixed. One develops a fierce, almost perverse loyalty to second life and the whole Linden thing…

    What will we all gripe about? Who will we blame?

  34. Gil Druart says:

    Awesome. You’ve all done very well. Now make it work for real 😉

  35. Pingback: Dusan Writer’s Metaverse » Teleport to OpenSim from Second Life: Interoperability and the Decentralized Grid

  36. Tegg B says:

    It’s a step I suppose, but not much point TP ing to another grid yet if you arrive pretty much bare butt naked and may not even have your name if someone else has it already on that grid.
    One day we will be able to walk/maybe even drive from one grid to another 🙂

  37. MazokNishi says:

    Well done Linden.

    This is a big step toward your Survival.

    Well seeing the upcomming Mixi Deal in .jp the Open Grid getting Steam soon and the OGP getting necesserly for Linden. As Mixi will have a Mulitute of Registerd Accounts from the Beginning ( 20M Registerd Accounts currently as far as i Rember )

    Keep up the Opening of the Grid, as faster as better 🙂 Then we will see the 3th Generation of Web sooner then most of us thought

  38. Ryou Yiyuan says:

    For inventory why not work on an avatar key will be reconize in both world ? If an avatar use that same key in SL and OS why not inventory with not full right will be used in both ?

  39. Emondrell Raymaker says:

    It’ll be really interesting if inter-world transfer starts up between more widely disparate metaverses than SL and OS. /me gets evil look on face… I can’t wait to see the WoW to EverQuest transfers 😀

    Then again, those aren’t user-created worlds. Still, it’s very interesting to watch things moving in this direction.

  40. Pingback: IBM and Linden Lab Interoperability « No where Now here

  41. Fox says:

    lmao. So when were you going to work on performance and stability of your current product again?

  42. Daten Thielt says:

    Yea thanks linden lab for screwing up all the large group of private islands owners, its bad enough our islands are now worth so much less thatn what it is , and now there gona be worth nothing? so your still going to be telling people to buy islands with you and then the pore begggers find out that within a year an a half there islands will be worth nothing when all the large companies start populating the metaverse with there high end servers? you should quit whilst ur ahead.

  43. Great .. the company that invented the typewriter to process the Holocaust has a success in development with a company that is responsible for our digital lives… *shivers*

    OMFG … We are all going to di.. err.. be erased if history has a tendency to repeat itself ….. but at least it will all be documented, logged and stored … 😦

    But seriously … this is a step back for the residents and a step forward to a corporation controlled digital future. You hated adfarms ? You just wait …

    /me feels very cold inside … (Yeah.. i really do not like IBM)

  44. So, as others have said this is really old news. Having said that……

    Will the upcoming beta be open only to specific opensim-based grids, opensim in general or anyone willing to implement the standard? Some of us prefer our free metaverse without .NET 🙂

  45. Dekka Raymaker says:

    I look forward to TPing to other opensims without problems in 5 years time. However, this is indeed an historic day, congratulations.

  46. Very Keynes says:

    Well done, that was the sort of thing I was expecting Mitch Kapor to show in his keynote, but was rather hoping it would be announced as avalible rather then just a first test.
    Great Video Torley, I loved the StarTrek type ‘Matirialisation’ and the toung in cheek referance to the Apollo Program 🙂

  47. Daten – if you think that your island is an investment rather than a hosting service, then you’re mistaken. You may treat it as an investment, but LL sold you a hosting service, not real estate with guaranteed appreciation in value.

  48. Cool news, lol cheesy video. 😛

    It’d be nice if the attachments went over, I guess that may come in some time.


  49. Daten Thielt says:

    Linden lab sold me hosting for my sims yes, BUT i do not pay for my own asset server, my own backup serrver , i spoke to zha and went thew the costs of hosting evey sever needed to get a grid runing, or i chose to take the option of finding some private grid that will just charge me like linden labs does? this is going to screw every land owner unless they are some one like anche chung who will pay out for an asset/backup asset/bandwith requierd/ ect the list goes on to make it cost effective and if you get the big companies in the future E.G AT&T, AOL, BT, IBM then there would be no point in owning an island

  50. Cappy Frantisek says:

    Great now when SL™® goes blooey we can all tp to another world and make it go blooey also! Scalability!

  51. Lyn Mimistrobell says:

    I can’t wait to have my own sim running on my own server, accessible for all residents. 🙂


  52. You can run quite a few sims on a dedicated server that costs $100/month, how much do LL charge? 🙂

    And let’s not forget, nothing’s going to stop LL from still offering sim hosting, and they’ll likely end up lowering prices to be competitive eventually.

  53. Valradica Vale says:

    It seems to me that if the code for all this is really open source, it won’t be hard for people to get around any IP restrictions that of necessity will be coded into the legitimate and well meaning code on all this. There has to be a way for any legitimate opensim to ban cmmerse (both ways) with a renegade hacker opensim that does not conform to the IP standards on both ends. Perhaps an OpenSim federation that has InterWorld laws that they all acknowledge. those not part of the federation and fully in line with the IP laws of the federation can do what ever they want, but will not be in commerce with the federation.

    This is an interesting issue – but Linden and IBM better get it right- There are a number of us who depend on this protection for part or all of our livelihood!!!

  54. Vylixan Fallon says:

    hmm. sounds nice, but I don’t like it. Please never allow anything to move over from SL to an other platform. no assets no cash nothing.

    I am afraight for theft and fraude. Even SL is not completely safe, and if SL is connected to several other worlds that problem will multiply.

    But it sounds nice if SL was an utopia.

  55. The protection is server-side on the asset server. A rogue sim/grid will never get your stuff if you don’t set the right permissions to allow it.

  56. Pepper Haas says:

    This IS really exciting and my congratulations to both IBM and Linden Labs for this accomplishment. Now just make sure that when my avi travels, her whole inventory gets to come along….. (g)

  57. Daten Thielt says:

    its not as simple as just shoving sims on a dedicated server, you need a grid to put it on , so you will be paying that grid company to use their grid. then the inicial investment some of us have payed then we lost 40% because its droped to 1000, now we lose even more because linden labs try and compeet. all private island owners are being conned as we speak and untill some linden proves me wrong im gona scream about it

  58. I always find it amusing how people complained about the price increases for tier and islands, and now people are complaining about reduced prices.

    As for paying a grid provider, it depends on the provider. Some will charge you to link your own server. Some will manage the server for you and charge you per sim (like LL do). Some will let you link up your own server for free. Try OSGrid if you have your own hardware and want to experiment for example. There’s also various commercial providers popping up which I won’t name here as it’s inappropriate, but I invite you to go looking.

  59. Captain Noarlunga says:

    Oh Great News……now how about fixing all the problems in Second Life with the resources you have available? Did you forget we are paying for a service here, not supporting your experimental fantasies!

  60. APinkSwan Beauchamp says:

    While I agree this is a huge achievement for technology, I would still like to see some concerns addressed. If you think about it, won’t this make the in-world economy weaker? I realize that this game is unique in that at actually has a real life economy, but isn’t that the draw for sooo many here? We are able to pay for the use of the game through our businesses…be it clothing, scripts, land, etc. Won’t land businesses become obsolete? Heck, with the new items you get now for free and so many open source scripts, those types of businesses may no longer be needed too. This is the wave of the future, I know. This game appeared special because it was driven by the residents and I see it going very corporate…:(

  61. Dekka Raymaker says:

    @ 60 Second Lfe is a experimental fantasy

  62. “his game appeared special because it was driven by the residents and I see it going very corporate… :(”

    1 – not a game, how do you win exactly?

    2 – it’s becoming LESS corporate – it’s becoming decentralised and more free and open

  63. Marlena Petrov says:

    Once again the socially inept geeks and nerds come up with something that is oh sooo totally cool!! Like 99% of us care?? fix stability,and asset issues!! oh..but that does take some social responsibility…..something seemingly lacking from the folks @ LL. Its all about see what we can do now? …weeee !! NEW!! FLASHY!! SHINY!!
    Get real!!

  64. Daten Thielt says:

    @63, stop being such a big head alot of people call sl a game,even tho is not. not alot of people who hae the servers setup for them by linden lab are going to know how to setup the server for use with a grid, and if you look carefully you will see people who wined were the ones who lost money, people who said yay were people who hadent spent any.

  65. Zena Juran says:

    Maybe this will allow a user to run a standalone sim on their PC while maintaining connectivity to the SL grid? This indeed would be exciting! 🙂

  66. @65
    Yes, a lot of people mistakenly call it a game, and it’s something trivial but irritating.
    Yes, a lot of people won’t know how to setup a server themselves, but those that don’t still have the option of paying LL or someone outside of LL and those that do now have the option of setting up their own server and eventually linking it up to SL.

  67. APinkSwan Beauchamp says:

    @62 I do prefer the word platform over game, but some do consider it just a game, while others, like myself, conduct business here. To clarify my corporate statement…While open source is very good and does open things up for others, it is still the corporates who benefit….make the real money. Also, these are just my thoughts and opinions and I am still trying to get my head around it all. I do feel this is the wave of the future and virtual land and space will all become part of your ISP package.

  68. Elvis Orbit says:

    Congrats on this collaboration and breakthrough.

  69. Of course right now it’s LL and a few big-shot residents who make the real money. Some residents make a net loss, some make a small profit, a few make enough of a profit to make it a full time job, and very few make enough to become actually rich.

  70. Maelstrom Janus says:

    Very nice Im sure. But how about a few technical changes which might mean something to regular users of sl and give them more for their money… more prims per plot of ground maybe? an end to crashing during the move between sl regions let alone worlds ? Larger prims ? A wider variety of prim shapes ? The ability to bend and warp prims and cut holes in them wherever required ? The ability to put fonts onto builds and prims ?

  71. While congratulations are in order for a technical achievement, I tend to agree with Ann (#4). I can see the clear benefit to corporations (and to Linden Lab; most of us remember Wells Fargo); I can see how the “free everything” crowd will be happy; but I also see the “top of the pyramid” opting for a virtual space which more vigorously addresses their IP concerns and actively protects the irrecoverable Time invested in creating content. Whether or not Second Life is that virtual space seems to be the $64,000 question.

  72. @71
    You do realise LL are not abandoning other development, right?

  73. Just considering … how many and whose grid will be allowed transfers and connections to the real life financial networks and data of the maingrid of Second Life ?

    And what if governments purchase gridsystems of IBM and want to connect to Second Life ? What if the Linden economy and your local reallife ID will be required to participate in it all ? What if you can only connect to your digital identity with conformed I(nternet) P(rotocol) – address through a governed-by your-local-authorities-only-grid and THEN connect to Second Life ?

    How else would IP rights be controlled ?


    Seems more than like just a ‘game under construction’ …

  74. Pingback: IBM and Linden Lab take the next big step for (virtual) mankind : The Metaverse Journal - Australia’s Virtual World News Service

  75. Robert Rice says:

    Uh, this is pretty much non-news isn’t it? Transferring an avatar from one virtual world to the next isn’t much more than simply exporting the mesh and textures from one and importing it into another. I fail to see why this is exciting, historic, or press worthy.

    While interoperability sounds like a great idea on paper, there are still a lot of issues to be worked out, particularly in the realms of security, IP protection, commerce, and so forth. Making everything wide open and knocking down all the walled gardens is short sighted and ultimately disadvantageous for the industry at large, at least until these issues are solved.

    One last note: Second Life is not a game!

  76. Maelstrom Janus says:

    @73 maybe not but introducing a few changes which would actually benefit (and be of visible benefit) to people who come to sl to build, to create and explore would be nice… I crashed crossed sim boundaries when I joined 12 months ago I still do if I want to put a window in a wall I still have to use umpteen prims, if I want to put fonts on a build I still have to import, the number of prims per plot hasnt changed either.

  77. Maelstrom Janus says:

    and I wonder if when I eventually make the jaunt to brave new virtual worlds Im going to be ringed by glowing red ban lines which deny me the right to explore or even move as they often do in sl…..

  78. Sedary Raymaker says:

    @4: Perhaps you need to learn about software engineering

    An amusing thing to say immediately after showing your ignorance of the concept of “unit testing”.

    @76: I fail to see why this is exciting, historic, or press worthy.

    That’s okay. Leave that to the people who actually have some idea of what it takes to do backport such interoperability into a complex existing system

  79. Maelstrom Janus says:

    @79 perhaps the person who wrote comment 76 like me would actually like to see a few changes which benefit and improve sl for its less technocratic – users rather than being something for elitist technophiles like your self to rub your hands together over..

  80. shibaritwine says:

    Isn’t this old news and the work of Zha, not IBM?

    Or are you trying to bury Mitch’s ridiculous and insulting keynote quickly with fluff.

    Look at yourselves closely Linden Lab, you are going from worse to a laughing stock.

  81. Ina Centaur says:

    Wow – does this mean anything – and has the *actual* av transferred to the open grid?

    I mean this isn’t physical RL teleport as in sci fi, where the entire person (thoughts, body shape etc) is transferred. This is transferring an avatar, a visual representation based on a bunch of pixels. If your appearance isn’t transferred, is this actually transferring the same avatar?

    (But in other news… um transferring the same “name” – well I guess it is a small step towards ID.)

  82. Of course, some of us had grid interop implemented way before Zha’s experiment:
    Old AWG implementation

    I often log into SL and other grids using one standard viewer (without reconfiguring it!) on a regular basis just by changing the start location 🙂

  83. Kara Spengler says:

    We are thinking of SL as a monolithic set of servers …. in reality there are sims, asset servers, and so on.

    What if anyone could host a grid … but to be connected to the network of grids SL is on they need to use LL’s database? Then LL charges them for that use of course.

    For the asset servers we could have read of objects by any grid. Write would only be allowed by the originating one though. When I say ‘read’ I mean in such a way as we assume a cracked server, absolutely no way of bypassing no copy/no transfer/no modify. There may be a few more details of the permissions system I have forgotten (hey, it is pre-caffeine), but that approach should be a good first step.

    One debate is whether or not content creators should or should not be able to restrict their creations to one grid or another. This issue is a thorny one, what do we do about content whose creators have left SL? Some may want it one way and others another, but who can say which ones would say what?

  84. Maelstrom Janus says:

    The question is if I jump into IBMS ‘world’ will I be expected to pay for being there or is the hope that I will become another premium member… isn’t there a risk that people might start exploring and fnd they prefer other virtual worlds and jump ship ? Or are Lindens hoping IBM might ‘buy em out’….

  85. MarkByron Falta says:

    It’s suppose to be a historic day when we can teleport to other grids while getting ruthed and losing inventory? One can already get ruthed, borked, buried, or lose inventory just from crossing into the next region. What will be the next epic announcement?

  86. Robert Rice says:

    @79 “That’s okay. Leave that to the people who actually have some idea of what it takes to do backport such interoperability into a complex existing system”

    Cute. It isn’t my fault that SL is a complex existing system. I’ve always been of the opinion that SL could have been designed and architected much better from the start. That aside, I could care less how easy or difficult this avatar transfer process was, my point is that I don’t see why it is news worthy or a big deal.

    SL has consistently been marketed as new and innovative for years, even as it has rehashed old technology and ideas, as well as failed to keep pace with the MMO sector (also virtual worlds).

    This seems like more of the same…a good way for more press and making it seem that SL is much more advanced and trailblazing than it really is. It wouldn’t surprise me to see a press release where SL announces some new and innovative feature like letting users create their own names instead of choosing stupid precanned ones from a list. That’s press worthy too, right? Of course, that must be really difficult to do with such a complex system.

    Anyway, as I said, interoperability is a good idea on paper, but the implementation that people are rushing towards willy-nilly isn’t well thought out, and is definitely half-baked.

    One last thing, who was doing the goofy voice on the video? It sounded like a poor imitation of Emo Phillips after a few too many tequila shots.

  87. Robert Mullen says:

    @87 You’re unbelievably ignorant. That’s Torley. If you don’t know him, you clearly don’t understand/get Second Life. I recommend hitting the books before throwing some cheap-ass potshots, bro.

  88. Robert Rice says:

    @88 Those weren’t cheap ass potshots, and just because I don’t keep up with who is who and what nicks they use in SL doesn’t make me ignorant or lacking understanding about what SL is. That’s like saying I don’t understand/get pizza because I don’t know Papa John’s real name.

    I stand by my comments and I’m more than happy to debate the finer issues of interoperability, virtual worlds, virtual commerce, IP, or any other related topic.

    Torley if you took offense, none was intended.

  89. Pingback: Old News is Good News - It’s Not Linden Lab’s Fault « Common.Sensible

  90. Maelstrom Janus says:

    I personally feel the problem is that Lindens make all these grand ‘let them eat cake’ style announcements and new schemes while we don’t seem to get anywhere with those ‘ground level’ issues which seem to affect ordinary sl users most. I’d say focus youre efforts on at least stabilising the boundaries between sims before stabilising jumps between worlds. I’m sure this problem has been around a lot longer than the 12 months I’ve been here.

    Let us at least be able to step off the side walk safely before boarding the interspatial teleportation mechanism to the great unknown……

  91. Jenny Carlos says:

    Its funny how people are complaining about content being taken into other worlds lol. Linden Labs cant even keep there own content in there own world let alone transfer it to another lol.. Woke up this morning with almost 80% of my clothes missing from database. Now thats a heck of an achievement there. Yeah keep up the great work pfft

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  93. Anthony Hocken says:

    Thanks for posting the update Hamilton. Amazing to see people slagging this blog post off the way they do critizing just about everything under the sun.

    My main concern with be scripts. Most things like objects and textures can be stolen, apart from scripts because they never leave the server. This will all change if people are allowed to take them from SL onto an OpenSim.

    Also fascinating to see how currency is handled between SL and OpenSim. I guess each grid/sim owner would have to have their own currency exchange. The mind boggles. But at the very least someone could use a weak currency on an OpenSim to purchase something and then just take that item back into SL.

    One thing is for certain though. The open-source community don’t give a crap about commercial software. They’d rather see it die than exist in parallel with it. That’s the impression I’ve got anyway. Ironic when all they do is rip off commercial software and ideas anyway, usually badly. This whole undertaking needs to be bulletproof.

  94. Dusky Jewell says:

    Great news. Seriously.

    I am sure Microsoft is waiting for their chance to swallow SL up as soon as it is finished. A private virtual world on every desktop.

    I guess I better enjoy this while I can.

  95. Maelstrom Janus says:

    @95 you’rethe sort of guy who if he’d been on the titanic would have said ‘we’re sinking but the ships beautifully designed’

  96. oni says:

    now ppl can see our ruths in other worlds? nooooooooes! 8-0 cool tho 8D

  97. Maelstrom Janus says:

    @98 I thought ruth had been replaced with the plasma bolt from a romulan war bird… I see enough of em about 😀 but personally I thought it was an upward step on the evolutionary ladder from being some squat neaderthal female 😀

  98. Anthony Hocken says:

    @97 Probably lol but it’s better than critizing the captain, the ice berg, every ship employee in turn, God, the life boat, all the passengers, and the captains dog.

    People seem to be getting a kick over pouncing on every SL blog post and being negative about everything imaginable. It’s getting old pretty quick.

  99. BlueWall says:

    Thanks for the commitment and work that it bringing this about! We are excited as we enter this phase of virtual worlds, as many of us participate in multiple grids. It is true that a lot of work needs to be done to implement the OGP, and the OpenSimulator team is developing code at blinding speed to bring a lot of this about.

    Many of us participate in the non-profit OSGrid ( to test and build confidence/understanding in the system. Region servers are hosted by individuals, educational institutions and corporations around the globe using a variety of technology. Most of us run the bleeding edge source, updating/restarting our sims several times each day, and monitor/participate in #osgrid/#opensim/#opensim-dev on

    There are a variety of ways for willing participants to contribute to this effort. Many discussions are starting regarding IP and content, and these need to happen so everyone can gain understanding and develop a mindset that understands things from a “metaversal” viewpoint. Saijanai Kuhn has pointed out the AW Groupies, where a lot of the discussion has been taking place. Also, anyone wanting to see what is happening “on the other side of the ether” should checkout OSGrid at

    Looking forward to this next step, very much! 🙂

  100. hope antonelli says:

    If I read certain parts of the closing speech right yesterday…that LL will be ‘tightening’ some rules in the future (which i read as cleaning up the content and getting rid of the undesirables one way or another) then being able to transfer my inventory and assets to another, less restrictive grid someday is a really big deal. Second Life can be the virtual Disneyland and me and my Gorean friends can live happily elsewhere….and prolly pay less for doing so.

  101. @6 “Just A Thought” and all the others whining that this is “old news” – get a clue.
    See my report on this at my blog (click my name to get there).

    It’s an announcement that has to be vetted legally and through P.R.

    Sheesh, cut them some slack, will you?
    No, I’m not a Linden Lab apologist. I’m a realist.

    @ Hamilton: Great news. Thank you for taking the time to prequalify the most likely questions with a “FAQ”. I know it is still a long way off before this kind of thing works the way we all envision it.

    It’s encouraging to see it beginning to actually take shape.

  102. Renee Faulds says:

    “That’s one small step for man; one giant leap for mankind”.

  103. Georgette Whitfield says:

    Wow this is exciting stuff!!!! One day I envisage the Interwebs™ being all one virtual space, so instead of going to a bookseller website, your avatar will walk into their virtual store to purchase. I guess for this to work as I can imagine it, interoperability will be key. Either that or the whole virtual world technology would need to become like the Web with no one set owner. The idea is very exciting of what we can see in the future! /me imagines herself in her nursing home age 80 using her av to boogey on down with folks on the other side of the world! 😀

  104. Chip Midnight says:

    I’m very happy to see that last question and answer regarding transfer of assets between worlds and that LL has no intention of creating or promoting a system that would make inter-grid content theft trivial. Many of us have concerns about that and it’s nice to know that it’s being thought about from the outset. Thanks.

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  107. Maelstrom Janus says:

    I’ll be there cheering like crazy when I can fly my shuttlecraft freely over a boundary in sl without being crashed out…or if lindens say we’re increasing your prim allowance by 25 prims per 512 plot…or if they say right prims are being increased to 50 metres in size instead of ten or if they came up with a way of being able to cut any shaped hole anywhere in any shaped prim.

    Or how about a few other customer care ortientated changes of the sort we never seem to see… a reduction in charges or alternatively an increase in land allowances.

    Surely if you can jump between ‘planets’ these changes which would boost the pleasure of a great many sl users – and show a little more positive and ‘everyday’ return for their ‘input’ seem relatively minor.

  108. Oh no! What a shame! You missed such a great opportunity to dress this up as another awesome Magellan Linden story! 😥

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  110. march Korda says:

    it looks good.
    Does it mean that a high quality document becomes open?

  111. LOL sven – ummm duh… look at post number 6 and 91 and 103.

    At least scan the talk-backs before you post 😉

  112. amoration says:

    Great work Tess, Rose, Hamilton, Torley and everyone who worked on this! Silly video, great ideas. Did almost everything come over as grey, no textures?

  113. Gully Miles says:

    If no assets and inventory teleported, and the avatar’s appearance didn’t teleport, then what did? The name?

    How is this different from a logout in one place and a login in another place?

    Serious question!

  114. Damon says:

    I agree that this is great news for Second Life but to say this is, “the first time an avatar has moved from one virtual world to another,” is an incorrect statement. I and others can see multiple avatars moving through multiple worlds on platforms like Open Croquet and in X3D (the web3d open standard) worlds. Great job for SL for joining the club.

  115. Cool…. I was waiting long for that….

  116. sven neumann says:

    @Ari, looked at post 6 and 91 and 103 and to your blog… so, I’m not wishing that this is old news, at all. On the contrary I’m very happy about all this and i’m an advocate of interoperability since the very beginning.

    What I’m saying, is that this blog post can be misleading for everyone who knows what happened and it creates confusion with who doesn’t know about it. So if the events the blog post is referring to are the events of the 5th of July, it doesn’t hurt reporting so, does it?

    Having read the previous comments, I’m still asking, are you guys talking about the same thing that happened on the 5th of June or are you talking about a different achievement? if this is the case, how is this different from the previous one? That’s it, and It looks like I’m not the only one wondering about this

  117. Harold says:

    Nerrrrrdy! Very interesting.

  118. say Moo says:

    that is false, since opencroquet users cannot move into X3D on the fly, aka, within a session. They need to logout and login with another account, for each system.

    This is such an important step, in the evolution of virtual worlds, in general, and Secondlife in particular. I have waited sooooo long for a new milestone in making interoperability work in SL. Hence with this breakthrough weŕe a step closer to be able to run our own regions (through e.g. opensim software) and still be able to use our assets (eventually). Like we all are able to run our own webservers e.g.

    GREAT JOB folks at LindenLab, IBM and OpenSim!!!

  119. I wonder if anyone read my post where I had an early non-functional prototype back in october last year and a working prototype 3 months ago enabling (between trusted grids) interop?

  120. Vint Falken says:

    Yeey! Progress has been made. This announcement would have suited Mitch Kapur’s speech. (actually i think it’s bigger news than the cash prize! ;))

  121. JZ Paine says:

    The long range ideas of what can come of this interoperabilty is mind boggling to say the least. For a group to be only in place less then a year and to have already found the magic key to moving about in these virtual worlds is impressive to say the least. Hope to see more on this in the near future. A great time to be around.

    Congrats, on your forward thinking and hope our small world opens to a new virtual universe in the very near future!

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  123. Comment #83 for the curious 😉

  124. Blinders Off says:

    I find several things interesting about this. First of all, Linden Lab has truly surprised me by even hinting that they’re willing to work cooperatively with the Open Sim project. That is so un-Linden Lab that I had to check to see if the real world had suddenly flipped. Mind you, it is a logical, sensible move. But to be perfectly honest, LL is not known for logical, sensible moves. So this one surprised me.

    But then I learn that the avatar’s inventory wasn’t transferred, the body, hair, eyes and clothes weren’t transferred. Which makes me wonder what exactly it was that was transferred? A name? So what is it exactly LL is trumpeting over? Seem somewhat an obscure announcement all in all.

    Historically Linden Lab has been concerned far more with their bottom line that with what’s good for the customer. They’ve gouged their customers by charging extreme prices (they could have charged far, far less and with far better service). So this apparent about face has me wondering: is LL doing an about-face… or is there a highly-profitable behind the scenes agenda going on that has nothing to do with us being able to port our personal avatars and inventory to other VR worlds? What comes to mind, in truth, is that IBM is offering Linden Lab a major deal IF they manage to open up their architecture to IBM. Ah…comes the dawn.

    Perhaps this is a very early, baby-walking step toward ultimate VR intercompatibility. Or perhaps it is nothing more than horn blowing or a new profit angle associated specifically with IBM. I’ll reserve judgement on this one until the pie is baked and ready to serve. But at this time, I don’t think I’m buying the “Linden Lab is opening up their architecture” story.

  125. Gully Miles says:

    Exactly, Blinders.

    If someone said they’d teleported Philip Rosedale from San Francisco to Beijing, I would expect to be able to tell that they’d done it in some meaningful way — as opposed to hiding Philip in a warehouse somewhere, and getting a Chinese baby to change its name by deed poll.

  126. Maklin Deckard says:

    “Q: When the avatar teleported between worlds, did it look the same in both places?
    No, the clothes and attachments in Second Life were not transferred in this experiment. Thus avatars appeared as default, “ruthed,” avatars.”

    So, no items were tranferred, no shape was transferred…you basically copied a piece of text (name) and perhaps a few account creation datapoints from one piece of software to another and manipulated it on the other piece of software (attached it to a ruth)

    Way to go, you have just done what email has done for ages, passed text and data to another program that manipulated it. Simply astounding! 🙂

  127. Blinders Off says:

    Oh and not to be snide, but I’m glad everyone above wasn’t immediately blinded by this announcement. There were lots of observative and inspective comments above, not the least of which were from Sinead and Maelstrom (there were other excellent posts as well).

    I especially liked the one from Maelstrom:

    “you’rethe sort of guy who if he’d been on the titanic would have said ‘we’re sinking but the ships beautifully designed’”

    Then Sinead’s, which states the matter with short elegance:


    LOL well put. We’re supposed to take note about a supposed Ruth exchange when SL can’t even handle it’s own internal transfers. Let’s add to the above:

    “Hey, did everyone get the notecard I just sent out?”
    “No.” “No.” “Not me”. “Notecard?”….

    “@#$# chat just timed out on me and my own posts are backwards.”

    So forgive please, but a Ruth transfer? Woohoo! (What’s on TV?)

    Give us the ability to transfer our entire avatar as well as the inventory we’ve spent hours developing and $$$ purchasing, then I’ll get excited. But I’m definitely not gonna be holding my breath.

    Not trying to blow out someone else’s candles. Just kinda pointing out the candles aren’t even lit…

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  130. Bucky Barkley says:

    @ 127 “Perhaps this is a very early, baby-walking step toward ultimate VR intercompatibility.”

    Yes. Virtual worlds are interesting on their own as a walled off space (think of SL as a very large walled garden), but they will thrive all the more when they can mimic the web + OpenID.

  131. SifuMoraga says:

    So, where can I get a passport for the IBM OpenSim?

  132. Razor says:

    Great. even a bigger chance for content thieves 😦

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  134. pantaiputih korobase says:

    I don’t know about all this tech stuf, but would it then be possible to have 10 SL grids where you can TP or be TPed from one to the other once you solve the problem that you can not take your clothes and items with you? besides differently designed virtual worlds, LL could create some SLs to distribute the avatar load to different worlds. that could solve all the traffic issues, the lag etc etc? Is this one of the plans? Would be interesting to hear if so and if it can be technically realized.
    p.s. LL could add a SL where gambling is allowed again, hahahahaha (if the company who runs it is located in a country where that is possible)?

  135. Ron Crimson says:

    This is all starting to play out like Stargate Atlantis, lol…

    – The first of two Earth stargates is found in the early 20th century in Egypt, a few decades later a team travels to the first off-world location and encounters the Goa’uld Ra (Second Life opens in 2003 and residents encounter Philip Linden)

    – Daniel Jackson and Sam Carter figure out a cartouche and discover hundreds, no, thousands of other Stargates in our galaxy – and from there, adventure and pioneer spirits abound, new races and new challenges are encountered – oh, and things often go wrong too (between 2003 and now, SL residents are having a hell of a time and growing along with SL itself – oh, and things often go wrong too)

    – Atlantis is discovered in the Pegasus galaxy and a team travels on a one-way trip to the lost city (SL discovers the Lost City of IBM and sends some pioneering Lindens on an intergalactic trip to not just another region [planetary system], but another grid entirely)

    Hmm, what’s next? Ohyeah, the Atlantis team runs into the Wraith, the replicators, Michael… I wonder how SL is going to parallel that one next 😀

  136. Hamilton Linden says:

    Thanks for the lively discussion. I had a couple of comments and clarifications to add:

    1. We have already begun discussion with the Residents on how to create a permission system for inter-Grid operation that meets the needs of our current and future residents. Sai @14 references numerous of Zero’s office hours where it was discussed. I’d like to point out inworld meeting we had last Tuesday devoted to this topic, which was well attended by about 80 Residents. Needless to say they’ll be more of them. The transcript for that meeting is located at:

    2. We know there will be lots of concern by content creators and vendors about interoperability weakening the permission system which is why we addressed it with several questions in the Q&A. Let me repeat “We want to stress that when it does become possible to move avatars between worlds, we will take the utmost care to protect the rights of Second Life property owners and creators. Linden Lab will not design a system that lets people openly violate the permissions of SL goods and take them to other worlds.”

    3. Zha’s personal blog post a month ago before Teleport worked. It also did not discuss the Public Open Grid Beta.

    4. One of the reasons we announced the Public Open Grid Beta was that this interoperability testing and development effort is spreading to be more inclusive of the community. We’re starting with the OpenSim Group but others will be able to subsequently participate if they have software and grids they want to test interoperability with. Since we’re still in the early stages they need to be prepared that these protocols are still evolving as we gain further insight into what is required.

    5. While a small team of Lindens is working on future interoperability. It’s important to remember that most Lindens are working to support and evolve the current production system. Stability and Performance continue to remain our highest priorities within engineering. This new architecture that supports interoperability will also support a next generation of scalability in the longer term for Second Life.

  137. Ron Crimson says:

    No offense to Philip Linden btw 😉 anyway he couldn’t really be compared to Ra since Ra was killed off in the original Stargate movie back in 1994… hmm, perhaps he’s more like Apophis… which would mean M Linden is Ba’al… rotfl… ok, I’ll shut up now.

    Really, I’m just expressing my own excitement about this whole thing. 🙂

  138. dumisani says:

    Whooootttt!!!!! Let the exploring begin SOON!!! More worlds, more residents, more interesting challenges!

    This new inter-operability will come with so much excitements balanced against a whole tranche of new responsibilities that LL will have to be held accountable for, and the most important of this is protecting IP, especially those of individual or private designers, as it seems to me protection for large corporates entering SL is better handled these days. And lets make sure one platform is nice and stable before we start crossing the divide 🙂

    Regardless, congratulations!!! For me as an explorer, nothing more exciting than having my horizons expanded! Whhoooottttt!

  139. Noisey Lane says:

    One way around the inter-world movement of objects and items would be to not move them at all. Instead you would begin each new grid as a noob. Sounds obvious but that’s what you’ll be when you arrive at the new world. Maybe not butt naked, instead butt Ruthed and you’ll have to learn how this new grid works, how to buy clothes, objects, etc.
    That opens up numerous opportunities to content creators that can sell versions of their products in other grids.
    Backwards compatibility of existing scripted items with other grids would be a difficult task. This way, items created for a particular world will work as they should. If you want the same item in a new grid, you’ll have to buy it again.
    The point of jumping from one world to another surely is to have a different experience from the current one. WoW isn’t SL and vise versa. If and when I can TP there, I’ll dress appropriately on landing and start the uphill battle I’ve avoided so far.
    When in Rome…

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  141. Curtis Dresler says:

    I don’t think WoW is ever gong to be one of those joined worlds. Currently you can go onto many of the worlds with the Second LIfe viewers – you just redirect to the other world. The actual experience is much the same, although I haven’t found any of the open sims to be as complete as SL (and as most are relatively cheap, that is to be expected). That you can add your own server to the server farms at some certainly makes for an interesting future.

    I see the single biggest long term problem to be avatar addressing and look-up. They can make your other look-ups be either/or your home or current sim, but if all avs can travel to all sims, then you have to have a consistent identifier to separate them. for instance, I have the same name in five different sims I have looked at. Oh, well…

  142. Damon says:

    @ say Moo (121)
    I should of clarified what I meant. I have seen avatars move between different virtual worlds and applications developed on these platforms but not across. So not from Open Croquet to X3D but I have seen them go from proprietary formats into the open standard, no re-logging. The X3D specification is for communicating 3D on the web, between applications, and across distributed networks and web services.

    Again a great job for Linden and all working on the project, but I have to agree with the feelings of Blinders Off (127). Celebrate for the web when you can take your SL avatar/assets and visit Entropia, or There, or open standard scenes.

  143. Fez Detritus says:

    Yay! Keep up the good work, guys! I’m rooting for you!


  144. robertltux mccallen says:

    Just a Wild Suggestion on the assets between grids thing

    1 have a way to have Grid A share assets to Grid B (an av “native to Grid A on Grid B would draw assets from Grid A) and have some sort of Crypto Key certifing that the other grid is “safe”

    2 add a NOT FOR EXPORT permission flag (each part would then be “left at the border”)

    oh btw FOSS folks don’t mind commercial folks they just want said folks to oh act their age

  145. Blogland Oh says:

    Well done! I look forward to seeing more of your efforts!
    Go Linden Labs and IBM!

  146. “oh btw FOSS folks don’t mind commercial folks they just want said folks to oh act their age”

    It depends, “Free and Open Source Software” can generally be divided into 2 main camps:
    Free software
    Open Source

    And commercial forks could mean closed (thus non-free) or simply “used for a commercial purpose”. Both the OSI (Open Source Initiative) and the FSF (Free Software Foundation) say that software must be available to be used for any purpose to be labelled as open source or free software.

    Beyond that, there’s copyleft and permissive licensing. The GPL prohibits forks which are closed and is a copyleft license, the BSD license enables closed forks and is often abused by entities like microsoft. Some people don’t mind their open source work being abused in this manner while others do.

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