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We introduce the network software architecture of the Distributed Interactive Virtual Environment (DIVE). The platform is designed to scale to a large number of simultaneous participants, while ensuring maximum interaction at each site. Scaleability is achieved by making extensive use of multicast techniques and by partitioning the virtual universe into smaller regions. We also present an application-level backbone that can connect together islands of multicast aware networks.doi:10.1088/0967-1846/5/3/002 fatcat:lsgmozglpfe2phwyb5tofhpayu