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Collaborative Virtual Environment: System Architectures

  1. Qingping Lin,
  2. Liang Zhang

Published Online: 14 DEC 2007

DOI: 10.1002/9780470050118.ecse691

Wiley Encyclopedia of Computer Science and Engineering

Wiley Encyclopedia of Computer Science and Engineering

How to Cite

Lin, Q. and Zhang, L. 2007. Collaborative Virtual Environment: System Architectures. Wiley Encyclopedia of Computer Science and Engineering. .

Author Information

  1. Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 14 DEC 2007


A collaborative virtual environment (CVE) is a shared synthetic space that provides users a shared sense of presence in a common context with natural interaction and communication. A CVE allows geographically dispersed users to interact with each other and virtual entities in a common synthetic environment via network connections. One of the challenging tasks for a CVE creator is to determine where the data of the virtual world should be stored and how the data changes (e.g., interaction with an object by a user) should be propagated to all the users who share the same virtual world. When a user navigates in a virtual world, the movement of the avatar representing the user as well as his/her interaction with virtual entities should be perceived by other users in the same CVE. These require data communication among CVE users over the network. The design of system architecture centers around the choice of data communication models, database distribution models, and world consistency maintenance methods, which will have a direct impact on the CVE system performance. It is the core of a CVE design.


  • collaborative virtual environment;
  • system architecture;
  • scalability;
  • consistency maintenance;
  • data communication model