This is an overview of some important elements of Kaneva, one of the many virtual worlds out there. Here’s the list:
1. Kaneva is Hot
Not only is Kaneva a lot more interesting than I had imagined, or indeed experienced in my previous brief visits, but the creativity and community building going on inworld is just far more advanced than you may think. Kaneva isn’t Second Life, but it doesn’t have to be either, it’s a whole new world, literally.
2. Over 500,000 Registered Users
Though most of them are not active in the 3D world of course, Kaneva have still managed to rack up 500,000 registered users in the 6mts or so that they’ve been in beta.
3. Peak Concurrency is Over 500 Users
You can generally find a bunch of people in Kaneva at any time of the day, hanging out at the mall, or in one of the many clubs and hangouts available via the ‘go places’ menu. At peaks times, Kaneva has a peak concurrency of over 500.
4. 12,000 Communities
Members can create a community on the 2D side of the site, which gives them a standard ‘hangout’ consisting of a couple of long corridors and an L shaped room with a half moon conference table. Most residents purchase building blocks using their Kaneva credits and cover up the table to form a dance floor, then embed video’s in the walls along with their own textures to form a dance club. There is currently a limit of 50 avatars in a hangout.
5. Creativity Thrives Despite Limited Tools
There are no inworld modeling tools, you can’t even make objects outside of Kaneva and import them. This hasn’t stopped residents creating fantastic spaces inworld, such as the pizza hangout you see in the picture above, and a complete recreation of the I Love Lucy set in black and white though. Content creation tools are in the works, and the idea will be to let members showcase their creations inworld at their own businesses and handle the transaction side of the process on the 2D site.
6. Two Types of Money
Awards and credits are the currency types in Kanava. Awards you get for things like participating in stress tests, credits are purchased with real money and used to buy clothes, building blocks and other simple products. With the addition of the creative features mentioned above, Kaneva hope to build upon the fledgling economy, which constitutes a major part of the business model.
7. You Can’t Sit Down!
That’s right. Standing room only. The ability to do simple things like sit on a chair are coming, and more complex features such as voice integration or on the horizon, though no time frame is being given. An hour in Kaneva will reveal other missing features, such as the ability to manipulate camera position and zoom, but it seems like development of the platform is moving along at a good clip. In fact, we lost a few of our tour group due to an unexpected 177mb patch needing to be installed before we could meet inworld.
I rememeber when I visited Kaneva i thought it was quite limited. Theres a mall and some shops and not much more. You could buy and decorate an appartment, the nice thing about this was you could stream your own media and publish MySpace type of info. Compared to Second Life, Kaneva is much easier to use, the interface is quite simple. I am still not sure however it Kaneva could be a serious competitor for Second Life.