A trifecta of exciting news items from the Preserving Virtual Worlds project, on which I have been a co-PI alongside of researchers here at Maryland, as well as the University of Illinois, Stanford University, and the Rochester Institute of Technology, as well as Linden Lab, creators of Second Life.
First, the project has released its final report, 195 pages detailing two years worth of findings from our research, including such topics as emulation, virtualization, migration, archival description, collections policy, hardware stemmatics, Rosetta computing, and disk image forensics.
PVW has also been shortlisted as one of five finalists for the prestigious 2010 Digital Preservation Award, sponsored by the Digital Preservation Coalition and the Institute for Conservation. The winner will be announced in December.
Finally, we received the very welcome news that the next two-year iteration of the project will be funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services. Preserving Virtual Worlds II: Methods for Evaluating and Preserving Significant Properties of Educational Games and Complex Interactive Environments (PVW2) will be conducted in partnership with the University of Illinois (lead institution), the Rochester Institute of Technology, and Stanford University. PVW2 plans to help improve the capacity of libraries, museums, and archives to preserve computer games, virtual worlds, and interactive fiction. Full press release here.