I keep on hearing that a 3D, immersive world is coming and that it will be here soon. This metaverse will supposedly mirror the real world. This anticipated future iteration of the internet will allow interactions to take place among humans and automated entities through Augmented reality (AR), Virtual reality (VR), Mixed Reality (MR) and Extended Reality (XR). The new internet will still have everything that we love about it, but now it will be a life transforming experience. Certain aspects of the metaverse currently exist, although the metaverse doesn’t exist yet, but people are working very hard on its creation. When it is ready in about five to ten years from now, or some experts feel that it won’t be ready till 2040, we will be able to access and coexist live within a digital universe filled with augmented and virtual reality and interact with all sorts of environments using persistent 3D holographic avatars and innovative digital technology and other means of communication necessary for this hyper-real alternative world.
The concept of a 3D image was started back in 1838 when scientist Sir Charles Wheatstone introduced a design for the mirror stereoscope. This concept was called binocular vision, where you combine two images and manipulate the pictures presented to each eye and observe the depth that was produced when making a single image. The next leap toward the metaverse took place in 1935 when American science fiction writer Stanley Weinbaum published the book Pygmalion’s Spectacles, which became the first comprehensive and specific fictional model for Virtual Reality. In this book, the main character who is feeling disillusioned with reality puts on a pair of glasses that transport him into a fictional world of eternal youth and happiness, where he explores sight, sound, taste, smell, and touch, as his senses are manipulated.
My great niece has those 3D goggles that she wears when she is playing her virtual reality games online, but I have never done that and the metaverse will have practical benefits far beyond the world of gaming. In the metaverse, it might be possible for you to make things appear when you need them, and you could pick an item from the virtual reality vending machine that popped up out of nowhere right in front of you, and have it shipped to your house. This could be useful for all types of shopping, like say you sent your husband to the store, but you can’t remember the name and type of product that you need. Your brain-computer interface device could recognize this and transmit a link to your husband’s device, along with what stores are selling it and the aisle that it’s located in. This metaverse could show you your calendar when you wake up, sent you alternate routes when it senses a traffic jam ahead. Since it will supposedly sense a users’ body movement and their response to an experience, it could remind you of someone’s name that just said hello to you, or it would preheat your oven for you to start dinner. When the metaverse finally kicks in, you will see a digital twin of your house, your country, your office, and even your life.
Many people resist change and I know several that have refused to upgrade from Windows 7, because they were not impressed with the newer versions and I am certain that this will happen with the metaverse, although this may become impossible to ignore. Ready or not this virtual world is coming, and I am just wondering if anyone is excited about this, or if you could care less about these changes. Do you think that the metaverse will allow you to move beyond this world and live your life beyond any preconceived limits? Do you expect the metaverse to be a daily aspect of your life? Do you think the metaverse will be a good change for mankind and society? Do you see any potential threatening and harmful uses of the metaverse? Do you feel that a VR experience that confuses your senses will become nauseating? Will this new technology take over people’s abilities to control their lives and increase discrimination, harassment, bullying and hate, misinformation, online addictions, will it increase mental health issues, threats to personal data, privacy and safety and end up ruining life as we know it?