A virtual world is a computer-based online community environment that is planned and shared by people so they can communicate in a custom-built, simulated world. Users interact with each other in this simulated world using text-based, two-dimensional or three-dimensional graphical models called avatars. Avatars are graphically rendered using computer graphics imaging or any other rendering technology.
Individuals control their avatars using input devices like the keyboard, mouse and other specially designed command and simulation gadgets. Today's virtual worlds are purpose-built for entertainment, social, educational, training and various other purposes.
All virtual worlds possess the qualities of persistence and interactivity. This enables the users to explore the inherent benefits of socialization and allows them to study human nature and users' abilities.
A virtual world may also be called a digital world.