Tivoli Cloud VR (a Fork of the Old High Fidelity Social VR Platform) Is Now Available in Early Access!

This evening, Maki Deprez posted the following message to the announcements channel on the official Tivoli Cloud VR Discord server:

Tivoli is now available for early access!

Visit our updated website to try it out now! https://tivolicloud.com/

Keep in mind that this isn’t the finished product and lots of changes are still coming their way. Expect new things to come and old things to go. We’ve been so busy working on the HiFi codebase, reverse engineering and redesigning the metaverse API, ripping out all the crap we think are friction points to VR and redesigning core parts of the program optimized for speed and efficiency. We really want to create a truly awesome social VR platform that’s fun, exciting and easy to use. We want to get the technology out of the way and just give people what they want.

Keep in mind that our early access is mostly targeted towards artists and developers but everyone is welcome. We want your feedback as much as possible and we’re here to help on our Discord.

You can request features or report bugs on our road map: https://roadmap.tivolicloud.com/

Make sure you check out your Tivoli files as well: https://files.tivolicloud.com/

And here is our code base if you’d like to see: https://git.tivolicloud.com/tivolicloud

Thank you for being so patient!

In addition to Maki, other key people working on making Tivoli Cloud VR a reality are Caitlyn Meeks (the CEO) and Christina “XaosPrincess” Kinne (the CMO). But there are many people who are working on this project as volunteers as well.

So I paid a quick visit to Tivoli Cloud VR (you do have to set up a new account, by the way; I believe that your existing accounts on the old High Fidelity will not work). Your starting place is in the middle of a lush forest, with a pond and many little yellow ducklings wandering about!

You can pick up a free avatar from the Market, and I recognized many of them from my time in the old High Fidelity! I chose as my starter avatar the photorealistic Matthew male avatar (which, with a wizard’s hat, sort of became my standard avatar when filming episodes of the Metaverse Newscast in the old High Fidelity), and then I visited a stone temple world recreated via photogrammetry:

Looking pretty realistic! I have a good feeling about this project; it reminds me a lot of all the good things that happened in the old High Fidelity (and hopefully, without some of the technical, logistical, and organizational problems they encountered).

If you want to follow their progress on this enterprise, here is their blog. You can also join their Discord server or follow them on Twitter. If you want to contribute to the project, here is their GitLab and Roadmap.

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Pictures from Today’s Lockdown Dance Party in High Fidelity, Presented by XaosPrincess and Tivoli Cloud VR!

The second Lockdown Dance Party in High Fidelity is now in full swing!

Caitlyn Meeks announced from the stage that the next Lockdown Dance Party will actually be held on alpha-test version of the Tivoli Cloud VR platform, a fork of the HiFi source code, instead of in High Fidelity itself. While this is exciting news, it is also a sad moment, as today’s event might very well be the last major event to happen on the now essentially closed-down social VR platform High Fidelity. It is truly the end of an era. (And here is news on what High Fidelity, the company, is planning to work on next.)

So here are a few pictures I took to commemorate the event, which is on now and running until 6:00 p.m. Pacific Time today, Saturday, May 16th, 2020, with DJ Kreolis and DJ BrainStormer spinning tunes. Here are step-by-step instructions to join the dance party!

I chat with XaosPrincess during the amazing light show by BrainStormer
Caitlyn and XaosPrincess address the crowd
Busting a move on the dancefloor to DJ Kreolis

This is also likely the last time I will ever see my customized High Fidelity avatar, which I created using the now-withdrawn Virtual You mobile app:

Of course, it wouldn’t be a HiFi dance party without Chocka dancing on the stage!

Like I said, the end of an era. The final picture is courtesy of XaosPrincess:

Join Us for a Lockdown Dance Party in High Fidelity, Presented by XaosPrincess and Tivoli Cloud VR, and Help Fight COVID-19!

If you miss the sometimes-raucous dance parties High Fidelity used to hold before they folded, are you in luck! The irrepressible XaosPrincess is throwing the second of her Lockdown Dance Parties, presented by Tivoli Cloud VR! (The first party had over 70 avatars in attendance.)

The festivities run from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Pacific Time on Saturday, May 16th, 2020:

Now, I did inquire, and I can confirm that the Lockdown Dance Party will take place in High Fidelity, on a private server hosted by Tivoli Cloud VR. This is because Tivoli Cloud VR has not yet launched their platform. Here are the complete instructions for those of you who are interested in attending (courtesy of XaosPrincess):


Follow these steps to join the LOCKDOWN DANCE PARTY on May 16th:
– Download and install the client for your OS
Windows:
https://tivolicloud.com/highfidelity/HighFidelity-Beta-Interface-latest.exe
MacOS:
https://tivolicloud.com/highfidelity/HighFidelity-Beta-Interface-latest.dmg
– If you are familiar with High Fidelity, fire up the interface
    and type “xaos.tivolicloud.com” into the GOTO
– If not, activate this link in your browser window: hifi://xaos.tivolicloud.com
    which will start the interface
– On the login screen click on “take me inworld!” in the bottom right corner
    to arrive on location in our club’s cloakroom where you can choose your avatar
– Toggle between the modes by pressing Ctrl 1 for desktop and Ctrl 2 for VR
– Have fun and dance the cabin fever away 
    while channeling cloud computing power to Covid-19 research 

Minimum system requirements:
– OS: Windows 10, 64-bit / MacOS High Sierra (10.13)
– CPU: Intel i5 equivalent or greater
– RAM: 8GB+
– GPU: NVIDIA GTX 970 equivalent or greater
– Internet Connection:  20 Mbps download / 5 Mbps upload
– tethered HMD for VR


XaosPrincess tells me:

Saturday’s party will run on the HiFi client version 0.86 – to be safe it’d be good to check this in your installed software Windows window.

So, if you already have that version of the High Fidelity client software sitting on your computer, you don’t need to download and install the client from Tivoli Vloud VR’s servers. When I asked if users could still create new user accounts on HiFi, her response was:

Yes – that works by clicking on “take me inworld!” in the bottom right corner of the login screen…It’ll take users in as “anonymous” while they’ll still be able to create a screen name to their liking.

Apparently, the High Fidelity servers might actually still be up and working for creating new user accounts, but obviously, they could be taken down at any time now.

And the best part is, your presence will actually help in the fight against coronavirus! Here’s the info from XaosPrincess’ page promoting the Lockdown Dance Party:

Donating computing power to fight coronavirus

While the psychological intention of our party is to offer a relieving, virtual remedy for the emotional distress of social isolation, we also want to contribute to the recovery of our physical world. And once again TIVOLI CLOUD VR is here to help us with a very charitable offer: 

When the LOCKDOWN DANCE PARTY is over, their server will continue to run! 

For every person attending the party, we are  going to donate $10 in cloud computing power to fight coronavirus via the distributed computing project FOLDING@HOME which is researching Covid-19 in order to create a vaccine and drugs to restrain the pandemic.

With our last party we have been able to gather $750 in cloud computing power, and we hope that we can outshine this result with an even larger crowd on May 16th. 

So come on out, meet some old and new friends, and help donate computing power to fight COVID-19. Thanks to Tivoli Cloud VR for their generous donation, and thanks to XaosPrincess for hosting this event. (By the way, Xaos now works for Tivoli Cloud VR. Congratulations!)

High Fidelity Relaunches as a 2D Space with 3D Spatialized Audio

High Fidelity’s new homepage

Credit Wagner James Au of the long-running virtual world blog New World Notes for the scoop: High Fidelity’s next step after their failed social VR platform essentially closed up shop on January 15th, 2020::

After months or more of relative secrecy and silence, High Fidelity founder Philip Rosedale just unveiled Limited Early-Access invites to a 3D audio version of his virtual world platform, writing on his Facebook wall:

“We now have a way to bring people together using 3D Audio. It’s a lot easier to try than to explain, but the basic idea is you can get in with one click on any computer or phone, no download. You can move around in a big space where all the audio is High Fidelity (haha but very true) and in 3D. So everyone can talk together at the same time and you hear them all, or you can break off into discussion groups, or use different areas for different purposes.

This work is part of a larger project to build a whole new huge virtual world that is accessible from any device, but COVID made us decide to release what we had working. You can use it for things like performing live DJ/Music, events, family gathering, all-hands meetings, or whatever you can think up. The experience is very warm and connected – and very different than video conferencing.”

And, as Wagner writes, you can now request early access to this new virtual world via the revamped High Fidelity website (just click the “Spin Up a Server” button and enter your particulars). If you decide to fill out the form, you will get the following flashy message back:

And if you want a brief demo of HiFi’s near-field, spatialized audio in action, here is a YouTube video from March 2018:

Thanks to Wagner James Au for the heads up!