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After a long time, the server released its next stable version 0.12. It was time well spend, there is a big leap in features, just to pick one, I want to highlight the invite system. Known from the sister project .org. Simple onboarding! But see for yourself all the other features that make it even easier then before to selfhost a good decentralized chat software, that is as extendable as the protocol itself.

Menel :xmpp: boosted

tl;dr: OpenSim is a 15-year-old, free-and-open-source Metaverse from before The Metaverse was cool. And it's the Mastodon to Second Life's Twitter. 

So I've been talking about something called #OpenSimulator. But what is it, this OpenSimulator thing?

Let me start this way: Currently, lots of entrepreneurs, startups and trillion-dollar megacorporations are jumping onto the #Metaverse bandwagon. OpenSimulator has been driving that same bandwagon for over a decade already without almost anyone noticing.

Technically speaking, OpenSimulator (or #OpenSim in short) is a free, #OpenSource server application for virtual 3-D worlds that runs on Windows and Linux.

But it's somewhat like Linux: Technically speaking, Linux is a kernel. But everyone says that Linux is an operating system.

So in practice, "OpenSimulator" refers to a number of online worlds called "grids". Yes, a number. Not just one. No matter how many virtual worlds you've heard of, you may not have heard of OpenSim yet. That's because it isn't made by a company with an advertising budget but pretty much entirely by its user community.

Metaverse before Meta, decentralised before Decentraland

Decentraland advertises itself as, quote, "the first fully decentralized world", end quote. This is far from true, but the #Decentraland makers probably don't know that themselves because they may never have heard of OpenSim.

In fact, OpenSim has been around for much longer than Decentraland, namely since 2007. And it has always been as fully decentralised as a virtual world could possibly be. OpenSim has several thousand (!) independent grids, every single one of them being run by someone else, some by companies, a few by foundations, most by private persons. To give you an impression, Hypergrid Business has a grid list that's nowhere near exhaustive, nor is it always up-to-date, what with grids shutting down and new grids being launched all the time.

The OpenSim core developers are someone else than the many grid owners again. The various client applications, a.k.a. viewers, are developed by someone else yet again. There isn't any one big entity, much less a profit-oriented company, that's in control of the entire OpenSimulator ecosystem.

But those grids aren't several thousand walled-garden worlds separated and isolated from one another. Almost all of them are interconnected in the so-called #Hypergrid. This means that you can have an avatar on one grid and visit an entirely different grid with that avatar. You can (usually) take your entire inventory with you, and you can (usually) even pick up things on other grids and take them back home with you.

OpenSimulator is as decentralised and federated as #Mastodon, as #Diaspora, as #XMPP, as #Matrix, as #email. And it has been for almost one and a half decades now. Decades; that's an eternity in the online world. The Hypergrid is the closest to a "metaverse" of separate but inter-connected virtual worlds that we've come to date.

And there are actually several grids and institutions in OpenSim that have been carrying the word "Metaverse" in their names since long before Facebook became Meta. There's the Infinite Metaverse Alliance with its Metaverse Depot grid. Alternate Metaverse is one of the biggest grids on the Hypergrid. Just to name a few.

So at no point has OpenSim jumped upon the Metaverse bandwagon.

Second Life, but free and open-source and distributed

If you came here from Mastodon or elsewhere on the Fediverse, let me describe OpenSim to you this way: OpenSim is to #SecondLife what #Mastodon is to #Twitter. The main difference is that OpenSim has still got 99% of Second Life's look-and-feel plus most of its functionality. That's because it literally is a Second Life clone.

Remember Second Life? Guess what: It's still around. It has been since 2003. Yes, that long. 2006/2007 was only the huge hype. Even if it has been around for that long, it doesn't look anything like back then anymore. People who come back to Second Life after they've been there during the hype for the last time are blown away by just seeing mesh avatars.

What made OpenSim possible was when Second Life made its official viewer open-source. Anyone could see Second Life's API. For one, this was used to create third-party viewers. But beyond that, Second Life's inner workings could be extrapolated from the API. This knowledge was used to develop a wholly new system for virtual worlds, essentially Second Life with no big corporation behind it, no meddling Lindens all over the place, none of Second Life's rampant commercialism, but otherwise the same. This system was named OpenSimulator and first released in 2007.

Shortly afterwards, an experimental grid named #OSgrid was created as a testbed for the development of OpenSim. About 15 years later, OSgrid is by far the oldest and biggest grid on the Hypergrid, the latter both in land area and number of avatars, while still being a testbed.

It was fairly easy for OpenSim to take off because it has been using largely the same viewers as Second Life ever since. This, however, also means that the development of OpenSim is closely linked to that of Second Life.

Bigger than you may think

Now you may believe that OpenSim is tiny because "nobody knows it". It isn't. Let's have a look at the April 2022 statistics on Hypergrid Business to estimate just how big OpenSim is. Estimate because even Hypergrid Business only knows the stats from fewer than 300 grids; thousands of mostly small grids don't report any stats. For comparison, here are March 2022 stats for Second Life.

For one, those under 300 grids reported a good 43,000 unique active users. That's nothing in comparison to Facebook or pre-Elon Musk Twitter. But Second Life hasn't gone over 55,000 active users this year either.

Okay, so OpenSim has fewer users than Second Life. But it has got a greater landmass.

A standard region in both Second Life and OpenSim is a square that measures 256x256m (that's 65,536m² or 78,380 square yards for you Americans or nine football fields for you Germans). Second Life reported some 27,400 of these standard regions in use. Meanwhile, those under 300 OpenSim grids reported about 100,000 regions. This is not a typo. One hundred thousand. That's more than two regions per user. OSgrid alone reported 36,500 regions, making this grid alone bigger than Second Life by one third. Now you know why it's much less likely to meet other avatars on the Hypergrid than it is in Second Life.

How can OpenSim have such a huge landmass? Well, that's because land is way cheaper on the Hypergrid than in Second Life. There are two reasons for this.

One is that OpenSim is largely uncommercial. Entire regions usually do cost money, but much much less than in Second Life. You only have to pay to support the operation of the grid which often is in the hands of private people. You usually do not have to pay employees, and you never have to pay investors or shareholders. There are commercial grids, but they're the exception, and yet, they don't tax sales like Second Life and #HorizonWorlds do. Most grids don't have any means of in-world payment whatsoever.

The other one is that OpenSim has got much much more space in general. Not long ago, Second Life actually almost ran out of space. Its grid can't grow much bigger. Land is scarce, therefore it's expensive. OpenSim, in contrast, will never run out of space. A grid can consist of several hundred million regions. The maximum landmass is limited by available CPU power rather than area. Even that can be increased by running one grid on several servers; OpenSim scales very well.

Your own Second Life

This is also the reason why there are so many grids: Anyone can run their own grid and attach it to the Hypergrid if they want to. OpenSim can be hosted on anything from rented professional Web space to a Windows laptop to a Raspberry Pi (although you probably shouldn't host parties with well-known DJs on a self-hosted, Raspi-based grid).

So not only are there probably more users with at least one region of their own than without one, but at least every tenth user may be a grid admin, considering that bigger public grids often have more than one admin.

OpenSim has taken decentralisation to its full extent, much like e-mail or XMPP or Matrix or Mastodon. If you don't like the grid you're on, you can move to someone else's grid, or you can start your own grid and be "your own Linden", so-to-speak.

There's a vision of commercial, corporate-owned virtual worlds joining into a Metaverse. This will never happen because these worlds will never be sufficiently compatible to one another. OpenSim's Hypergrid, in contrast, is a network of connected virtual worlds that's reality already now.

All without having to throw yourself at any one profit-greedy company. No crypto-currencies, no NFTs, no blockchain. OpenSimulator is the Metaverse for the people, run by the same people.
Menel :xmpp: boosted
Menel :xmpp: boosted

Ab der FRITZ!OS -Version 7.39 wird nicht nur WireGuard unterstützt, sondern auch die "VPN-Benutzereinwahl von Android 12 über IPSec IKEv2".


Menel :xmpp: boosted

Can you trap a galaxy in a crystal ball? I tried! Back in 2018 I took this image of the Milky Way through a crystal ball from ESO's Paranal Observatory in Chile.

#astronomy #astrophotography

Menel :xmpp: boosted

It has been almost 5 months since I started running a Snikket server. I only had to update once and that was very easy. I faced no issues as of now on the server side. The uptime has been 100%.

This is a blog post I have written on my experience

I found @snikket_im project chatroom as very helping and welcoming. They try their best to help newbies in self-hosting, which usually takes a lot of patience.

#snikket #XMPP #decentralization #FreeSoftware

Menel :xmpp: boosted

Gajim 1.4.0 has been released 🚀

After more than a year of development, it’s finally time to announce the release of Gajim 1.4.0! 🎉

Gajim 1.4 series comes with a completely redesigned message window and conversation management. Workspaces allow you to organize your chats to keep matters separate where needed. These changes were only possible by touching a lot of Gajim’s code base, and we appreciate all the feedback we got from you.

#chat #xmpp #foss

Menel :xmpp: boosted

Polizei Hamburg mal wieder: Unterschriftensammlung als Straftat, oder: Warum die Hamburger Polizei Nachhilfe in Sachen Versammlungsrecht bitter nötig hat

Menel :xmpp: boosted

Geplante „Chatkontrolle“ der Kommission aus Sicht des Datenschutzes – ein Thread nach erster Prüfung: Der Entwurf der Kommission ist nicht vereinbar mit unseren europäischen Werten und kollidiert mit geltendem Datenschutzrecht.

Menel :xmpp: boosted
Menel :xmpp: boosted

So, apparently @peertube now has live chat built into it through a an official plugin (you can see a screenshot below).

The plugin has a github at

It was announced on the PeerTube blog back in November at

The chat doesn't require an account, you just pick a nickname and start chatting.

#PeerTube #LiveStreaming

Menel :xmpp: boosted
Menel :xmpp: boosted

A few years ago I made this flow chart of which Mastodon posts end up in which timelines!

So, you can see how each instance will have a different local timeline, and even a slightly different federated timeline - and you can see why the federated timeline moves so much faster than the local one, too.

This is why it's important to boost good posts and use hashtags - the fediverse is fragmented and harder to search by nature.

[ #mastodon #meta #tootorial #howto #mastopedia #mastotip ]

Menel :xmpp: boosted
Menel :xmpp: boosted

Are you looking for people to follow on Mastodon and the Fediverse?

Click below for a directory of hundreds of recommended follows organised into 74 topics:


(If a category has several pages of follows, click "show older" at the bottom to see the next page.)

This is just a tiny fraction of accounts on here, but hopefully it will give people's timelines a good start.

Please do share this with anyone you think might benefit, for example people who are new here.

Menel :xmpp: boosted

Ich nutze jetzt seit über einem Jahr die (Meta-)Suchmaschine MetaGer. Aus meiner Sicht eine echte Empfehlung.

#MetaGer #Suchmaschine

Menel :xmpp: boosted

The #XMPP Newsletter for March '22 is out!

Many thanks to all who contributed! Read about last month's activities in the XMPP community and the development of the specifications (#XEP)!

Enjoy reading! 📰 ☕

Menel :xmpp: boosted

Prosody is free open source software for running XMPP/Jabber messaging servers. You can follow their official account at:

➡️ @prosodyim

Their website is at

Prosody is an extremely popular way of running XMPP servers.

If you're looking for a complete XMPP system, check out the same developers' @snikket_im platform which includes server and client software.

#Prosody #XMPP #Jabber #Messenger #Messaging #IM #FOSS #FLOSS #Libre #FreeSoftware #OpenSource #SelfHosting

Menel :xmpp: boosted

A new #XEP has been published recently:

XEP-0464: Cookies

The first spec published as part of the effort to get #XMPP up to speed with modern tech and make it web-friendly.

Author: Travis Burtrum


#specification, #web

Menel :xmpp: boosted

Google is confronting the EU's GDPR demands by sunsetting Google Analytics and introducing a new version.

Read our blog for #PrivacyWednesday #StayUpToDate

Menel :xmpp: boosted

Wo wir die Demokratie verlernen? In der Schule!

von Bent Freiwald

Wie bekommen junge Menschen ein Gefühl für die eigene politische Stärke? Unsere neue Serie beginnt dort, wo Mitbestimmung nicht mehr als ein halbherziger Versuch ist.

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All friendly creatures are welcome. Be excellent to each other, sei humanistisch, keine Nazis, keine Hassrede. Nicht nur für Nerds, aber die Domain ist irgendwie cool. ;) Keine Bots im Allgemeinen erlaubt! (nur mit vorheriger Genehmigung). Sprache ist hier hauptsächlich Deutsch, Englisch auch erlaubt. --- All friendly creatures are welcome. Be excellent to each other, live humanism, no nazis, no hate speech. Not only for nerds, but the domain is somewhat cool. ;) No bots in general! (only with prior permission). Main language is German, English is allowed.