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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Not a Good Week for the Virtual Worlds Space

First, Metaplace announced it will be closing its virtual doors on January 1, 2010 at 11:59 pm Pacific Time. This was one of the alternatives I listed for something other than Second Life in my Alternatives to Second Life (continued, again)

I described Metaplace as:
Is a Flash-based virtual world platform that allows players to buy and sell items, own property and play online games. Because it is Flash-based there is no download required. Another particularly interesting aspect of Metaplace is that it can be embedded into a webpage. This means that a user created "portal" into a virtual world can be accessed from web location. You can add content from other web locations like Amazon or videos as well. Formerly Meteplace was known Areae.

Here is an article talking about Metaplace closing Virtual world designer Metaplace to shutter

Secondly, and more sketchy at this time is that Forterra, according to Erica Driver at ThinkBalm has laid off 60% of its workforce and is headed for acquisition. Here is an article that describes some of the rumors on the subject, Is Forterra Headed for Acquisition? Layoffs Reported. This is also a company I mentioned as an alternative to Second Life and is a big player in the 3D Virtual Immersive Environment space.

It is inevitable that the 3D Virtual World space will have acquisitions, mergers and failures. It is all part of the technology growth cycle, we've seen it before with e-learning companies and with LMS companies in the 1990's. Now we are seeing it in the Virtual World space. Inevitable but not fun to watch.

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1 comment:

danucf said...

Hey Karl:

Great blog. I am very saddened by the lost of Metaplace because it is a significant component of my class. My university is partnered with Apple, so it can be very hard to find an easy, friendly tool to build virtual worlds using the Macbook Pro.

Any thoughts?
Happy Holidays!
Daniel