A scalable server for 3D metaverses

Ewen Cheslack-Postava, Tahir Azim, Behram F.T. Mistree, Daniel Reiter Horn, Jeff Terrace, Philip Levis, Michael J. Freedman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Scopus citations


Metaverses are three-dimensional virtual worlds where anyone can add and script new objects. Metaverses today, such as Second Life, are dull, lifeless, and stagnant because users can see and interact with only a tiny region around them, rather than a large and immersive world. Current metaverses impose this distance restriction on visibility and interaction in order to scale to large worlds, as the restriction avoids appreciable shared state in underlying distributed systems. We present the design and implementation of the Sirikata metaverse server. The Sirikata server scales to support large, complex worlds, even as it allows users to see and interact with the entire world. It achieves both goals simultaneously by leveraging properties of the real world and 3D environments in its core systems, such as a novel distributed data structure for virtual object queries based on visible size. We evaluate core services in isolation as well as part of the entire system, demonstrating that these novel designs do not sacrifice performance. Applications developed by Sirikata users support our claim that removing the distance restriction enables new, compelling applications that are infeasible in today's metaverses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2012 USENIX Annual Technical Conference, USENIX ATC 2012
PublisherUSENIX Association
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781931971935
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019
Event2012 USENIX Annual Technical Conference, USENIX ATC 2012 - Boston, United States
Duration: Jun 13 2012Jun 15 2012

Publication series

NameProceedings of the 2012 USENIX Annual Technical Conference, USENIX ATC 2012


Conference2012 USENIX Annual Technical Conference, USENIX ATC 2012
Country/TerritoryUnited States

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Computer Science


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