This article in Wired reports on progress being made to produce “open” virtual worlds, which evolve based on the creativity of their inhabitants, rather than according to patterns set by programmers as in traditional multiuser online games such as Everquest or The Sims. The potential of open virtual worlds has been revealed in new commercial ventures such as Second Life from Linden Lab, which has yielded theme parks, news blogs, XML-RPC connections for exchanging data with the rest of the Internet, and a real world currency exchange. Developers are now taking extensibility a step further by building virtual worlds based on open source software, which are not controlled by any single organization, commercial or otherwise. Efforts underway include the Open Source Metaverse Project (OSMP), Croquet, and MUPPETS. Some of these projects are clearly inspired by the Metaverse described in Neal Stephenson’s novel Snow Crash.