Architecting Scalable Academic Virtual World Grids: A Case Utilizing OpenSimulator

A second article from Journal of Virtual World Research, this time focusing on education and virtual worlds, and again featuring work from St Andrews:

Charles J. Lesko, Yolanda A. Hollingsworth

To better understand the technological requirements of academic institutions looking to implement an OpenSimulator virtual world grid, an observational study was performed to better understand the solution requirements. The purpose of this presentation is to provide an analysis of the parameters and considerations utilized to architect a scalable, open-source virtual world grid for use in various academic delivery scenarios. This specific case focuses on the detail leading up to deployment of the solution, and includes a discussion regarding solution selection and incorporation of various virtualization technologies to maximize institutional hardware resources based on established functional need. The computing resources utilized for this case were allocated via a virtualized infrastructure. Discussion and results include presentation of a proposed layered model outlining the solution elements and their relationships as well as various approaches to structuring and organizing in-world content and activity.