China’s answer to Second Life, HiPiHi, announced at the State of Play V conference in Singapore Monday its intentions to work towards standardized 3D worlds, with an aim of eventually delivering interoperability between various platforms.
HiPiHi said it would cooperate with “global leaders in the Internet and communication industry to establish a set of relevant hardware and software standards for the development of the 3D platform.” The company would then work with other 3D virtual world providers to finalize these standards with the goal of allowing users to interact and transact between different virtual worlds.
HiPiHi current platform is remarkably similar to Second Life in both looks and features, with users creating the world and being able to own land and objects.
Linden Lab, the company behind Second Life has recently taken some steps towards opening its platform, including open sourcing the code for the Second Life client, however the Second Life world has remained closed to 3rd party servers. Linden Lab has previously said that they have “a vision of a globally interconnected grid with clients and servers published and managed by different groups” (indeed, they called it inevitable) so it will be interesting to see whether they join HiPiHi’s initiative.