I-VW Virtual Worlds Evaluation Methodology
An Intelligent Eye on Virtual Worlds Technology

I-VW Home Page   An evaluation methodology to investigate the potential of virtual worlds for practical uses is being developed as part of the I-VW programme. This concentrates on the perspective of the use of virtual worlds for professional uses and especially collaboration both within and outside an organisation.

Key Headings

  • Server Hosting ... third party, multiple providers, self-host option
  • Client ... availability, generality, thin clients, mobile platform clients, ...
  • Support ...
  • Cost ... model, capital and recurrent, per avatar, for other content, ...
  • Media support ... formats and mechanisms
  • Voice ... features
  • Chat ... features
  • Group management ... features
  • Security, privacy ... mechanism and features
  • 3D model import and export
  • Avatar information import and export
  • Object scripting language and extension languages
  • Links to external programs ... language
  • ...

Other Criteria

Other feature comparisons, evaluation matrices and virtual worlds platform growth figures are available elsewhere. E.g.,
  • Virtual Worlds Platform Matrix by VirtualWorldsNews.com. Includes:
    • company
    • world name
    • world focus
    • user generated content
    • adverts supported
    • currency
    • target audience
    • initial cost
    • virtual item sales
    • perspective
    • URL
  • Virtual Worlds Comparison Chart. Includes:
    • Virtual world - The name of the virtual environment.
    • OS - The available platforms for the title (PC, Mac, Linux, etc.)
    • Cost per month - The cost for a monthly subscription. If the software has free, limited access available, it will be labeled as Free.
    • Target user and style - The intended audience for the virtual world (e. g. kids, teens, adults) and the style of the environment (education, exploration, content creation, building, socializing, etc.)
    • Edit avatars - The ability to customize one’s digital character.
    • Build or design content - The ability to create custom content, without any required programming or coding.
    • Script content - The ability to create objects and items via programming or coding.
    • Own land / sell items - The ability to own virtual real estate, and the ability to sell virtual items within the virtual world.
    • Education ready - The ability to utilize the virtual environment for educational purposes, such as to teach subject matter.
    • Community events - Available community supported or sponsored events within the world.
  • List of Virtual Environments
  • Casual Immersive Worlds - A Comparison Chart by TechCrunch, 5-Aug-2007
  • Virtual Worlds Insight by K Zero - An assessment by age and size of the virtual worlds sector as presented at VW Expo NYC 2008. This research include existing worlds and platforms in development. Includes:
    • K Zero "Universe-graph" - shows total registered accounts across a wide-range of different virtual worlds with accompanying average age and year of formation.
    • Marketing Activity - companies and brands engaging in worlds catering to kids and tweens
  • Clever Zebra - Nick Wilson - Report on "11 Virtual Worlds Technologies That Will Change the Way we Work", 29-Jan-2009. Listing active VW platforms.

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Page maintained by a.tate@ed.ac.uk, Last updated: Thu Jan 29 12:44:12 2009