Imagine a situation: an international company with offices in several countries wants to gather all employees for an event in Dubai or Cyprus. For this purpose, you need
a serious budget, complex logistics, and the opportunity for everyone to be healthy at the same time, postpone all business, leave their families and fly in for a few days. At the same time, there is
the risk of canceling the event due to a pandemic (lockdown) or other force majeure. But even with the most ideal layouts and organizations, it is unlikely that they will be able to attend this event.
all 100% invited.
And then you will find out that there is an almost infinite virtual space with digitized cities, streets, or objects (full 3D copies of real hotels, museums, nightclubs, and any well-known locations). With the help of rented virtual reality helmets (such as Oculus) and created avatars (an exact digital copy of each employee) you can hold the most exciting event in your life in just a few hours: parties on a virtual yacht overlooking Rio de Janeiro at night, or a quest for digitized halls of the British National Museum.
Virtual Reality at Microsoft Flight Simulator Metaverse today
"Microsoft Flight Simulator" already includes 2 trillion digitized trees, 1.5 billion buildings, roads, bridges, towns, and an exact repetition of the landscape around all the airports in the world. It looks like the real world as everything has been scanned in high quality from reality.
Whether we like it or not, the modern world will move more and more into the virtual space (3D world) every year, which is expressed in the fusion of digital and physical life.
Right now, event spaces and entire worlds are being actively created in which people (with the help of their avatars) will be able to do shopping, organize parties, study,
work and live.
In the coming years, there should be a breakthrough in VR technologies that will make the metaverse as similar as possible to the real world, which will increase interest not only for gamers but for all companies, event agencies, and most people on the planet.
The Metaverse is an almost infinite three-dimensional world, which will be united all entertainment, work, and personal virtual spaces. Entering the virtual world
(or the world of augmented reality), a person will be able to fully work there (receiving money, work experience, and connections for this), relax (walk through digitized
museums and streets), make purchases in stores (with fittings, test drives), communicate, and build relationships with other people.
In fact, the metaverse will become the second reality that will unite billions of people. Instead of different browser tabs or social media pages, people will be able to interact in the virtual space of their work, university, and private party.
For example, your childhood friend lives in another country, and you haven't seen him for a long time. Now video communication is available for you, but this is only communication with a two-dimensional image through the screen of a phone or computer. Now imagine meeting with a friend in the virtual space of the metaverse, where you not only communicate, but also do favorite pastimes (playing golf, walking along a digitized familiar street in your city, etc.). This is already a completely different level of online communication. When you can communicate and spend time together not with drawn avatars (as in computer games), but with an exact video copy of your friends, transmitting in real-time all the nuances of their facial expressions, then communication in the digital world will become more exciting. And it will completely transform the industry of organization of parties, events, and conferences.
The idea of creating a metaverse exists relatively recently (only a few decades), because before the advent of the Internet, even science fiction writers found it difficult to imagine life in the 3D world. Most science fiction novels have been about aliens, androids, and galactic conquest.
However, in 1992, the bestseller "Avalanche" (Snow Crash) was published by science fiction writer Neal Stephenson, who is considered the founder of the concept of "metaverse". In this novel, the “metaverse” was a global virtual reality stretching over 65,000 km in which people worked and played. The main character of "Avalanche" is a hacker living in two different worlds. In real life, he worked as a pizzeria courier, but he constantly escaped from the gray routine into the colorful world of the virtual metaverse. Then, cinematography joined the theme of the influence of the virtual world on real life (especially in cult films: The Matrix, Ready Player One, Oasis).
Already in the first period of the development of the user Internet, there was an understanding that it was too “flat” and that the future belongs to 3D sites where people can fully immerse themselves. To implement this idea, a special VRML standard was created in 1994. It allowed for making interactive 3D graphics, avatars, and animations. In 1997 "Sony" released a SAPARi online chat where users could roam and chat as animal avatars. At the same time, appeared the first virtual city with streets, clubs, libraries - Cybertown (developed by Blaxxun Interactive studio). There, users could earn cyber money and pay for their virtual housing and entertainment.
The computer games "World of Warcraft", "Second Life", "Fortnite", "Minecraft", and "Roblox" became larger-scale prototypes of the metaverse. Online game development companies received huge incomes on the desire of people not only to play according to a pre-prepared scenario but to influence the common virtual space themselves and be participants in virtual events, parties, and concerts. So, Blizzard Entertainment (the creators of "Warcraft") has about 5 million users with a paid subscription and revenue of over $8 billion
Each of the computer games embodies the idea of the metaverse in its own way. For example, "Second Life" (which was released back in 2003) emphasizes the imitation of relationships between people, as in real life. Any player can invent himself anew (age, appearance, profession, and ending with the creation of a script for his own virtual life). More further developed "Roblox", which became a platform for creating your own games and worlds.
However, at the moment, all computer games still remain separate spaces closed in their virtual world. Developer creating a full-fledged metaverse should unite everything into a single space (online communication, augmented reality, virtual worlds, work, and entertainment).
Virtual events have been periodically organized by various platforms in the past. For example, in 2019, Disney premiered a new episode of "Star wars" in "Fortnite". Film
director JJ Abrams gave an interview in the same virtual space by his avatar. This communication could attend and interact with other people's avatars.
"Fortnite" is famous for regularly organizing virtual concerts, parties, and branded clothing launches within its space.
The process of evolution of the virtual space towards the metaverse would have been discussed for a long time only in companies of programmers, gamers, and developers of online games. But in 2021, Mark Zuckerberg announced a change name of Facebook to Meta in order to implement the idea of a virtual universe in the next 5 years. In confirmation of what has been said Facebook will invest $10 billion in this project in 2022 (which is more than 30% of the company's annual income) and announce the hiring of 10,000 new employees whose activities will be related to the creation of the metaverse.
But Zuckerberg is not alone in this desire. In the same 2021, "Epic Games" announced their own vision and development of virtual universes (the creators of one of the best online
games - "Fortnite"). They raised $1 billion in funding for their version of the metaverse.
But it seems that another giant, Microsoft, will become the main competitor for Facebook. They have already held a presentation of their own platform for working in virtual reality. It will allow using 3D Mesh avatars to hold joint conferences, interviews, and meetings and will be integrated into Microsoft Teams in 2022.
COVID and several waves of lockdowns have only accelerated these processes. Hundreds of millions of people have moved part of their real lives to online (work from home, zoom conferences, online studies). In the "Minecraft" game, entire virtual schools have been organized to help children learn during the pandemic. The same processes also affected events. Companies began to organize corporate parties, presentations, and conferences in the virtual space.
Many companies have begun buying up space in the metaverse to set up their offices, stores, and advertising spaces. Don't stay away from governments of various countries. So at the beginning of 2022, Barbados (a small island country) plans to be the first in the world to open its embassy in the metaverse. China with the help of state-owned companies (China Mobile, China Telecom, and China Unicom) creates its own Baidu metaverse. It already even has a separate planet "Xi Rang" (Land of Hope), and for the test development of the virtual space, 100,000 Chinese users were connected at once.
At first glance, it all seems silly or like a child's computer game, but we will explain in detail how the emergence of the metaverse will affect practical life, including events, concerts, parties.
The main question is how best to immerse humanity in virtual space: using a virtual reality helmet or glasses augmented reality (and lenses in the future). The first option seemed more logical. In the aforementioned science fiction novel "Snow Crash", the protagonist entered the metaverse using a virtual reality helmet. In the early 90s, the first gaming helmets for 3D games were developed by Nintendo and SEGA. Mark Zuckerberg also saw this way development of the metaverse/ In 2014 he bought for $2 billion "Oculus" company (a developer and manufacturer of virtual reality helmets).
But the main disadvantage of such a gadget is that while immersing in the virtual world, a person becomes almost detached from reality. This is very inconvenient if you stay outside or in the same room with other people. Therefore, an alternative is an augmented reality, which allows you to simultaneously see the real and virtual worlds.
Humanity has become familiar with this technology on a large scale through the game "Pokémon Go" created by Niantic. It was enough to have a mobile phone the installed application and the real world was in contact with virtual heroes everywhere.
In the near future, school lessons will not be the same as now. With the help of augmented reality glasses, students will be able to see how some historical figure or a dinosaur enters the classroom. According to pre-designed scenarios of the school curriculum, a history teacher will be able to conduct a dialogue with a virtual 3D king, gladiator, or knight, and the biology teacher will be able to turn the classroom into a Jurassic park.
Adam Savage (the host of the TV show "MythBusters") came into contact with this amazing virtual world. Он в 2018 году делал обзор очков дополненной реальности Magic Leap. In 2018, he reviewed Magic Leap augmented reality glasses. The gadget scanned the room and showed that outside the windows (right down the street) a large whale swam, making all the characteristic nature sounds. Adam commented that was so real that it even took his breath away.
And this opens up great opportunities for the event sphere. Imagine a corporate event in the metaverse where all guests can immerse themselves in the relevant theme of the event
with the help of augmented reality. These are no longer flat zoom parties. In virtual reality, you can recreate all the necessary effects, architecture, and atmosphere of your
Disney has already received a patent to create a theme park where all interactive activities and attractions will be personalized for every guest by augmented reality. The movement of people at the location will be monitored using their phones and, depending on the age and preferences of the person, will be projected with personalized 3D effects.
In fact, there is also a third way for the development of virtual reality - these are holograms. But the technology is still too far from rendering an acceptable quality interactive 3D reality indoors. Therefore, we do not consider this option for the development of the metauniverse in this article.
…this article will be updated soon.
© Ihor Kuksenko www.lafestamusic.info