Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, Artificial Intelligence, and 3D printing technologies are some technologies that will enable us to translate the idea of Metaverse into reality.
Metaverse is not a complete reality today. However, in bits and pieces, it is developing. With big investments being made by top tech companies, Metaverse will certainly not be a very distant future.
Let us explore what Metaverse is, which technologies enable Metaverse to become a reality and what the implications are.
What is the Metaverse?
Metaverse is a term used for a network of several extremely realistic and interactive 3D virtual environments. It makes it possible for people to come together in the virtual realm to work, play, and socialize. There are real-time 3D virtual simulations, which can be a virtual continuation of real-world identity, history, transactions, etc.
The term metaverse gained popularity after the company Facebook renamed itself, Meta. Mark Zuckerberg, the Facebook CEO, announced that the ‘metaverse’ is now a new chapter for the internet.
Metaverse, in recent times, has been used in discourses around virtual reality, most prominently for training pilots and handling aircraft. Cryptocurrency and blockchains have led many to believe that Metaverse is linked to financial decentralization. People can now trade goods in the virtual world.
It is not exactly a reality right now. It is, in many ways, a dream and an aspiration and a term used to cover some already-existing 3D virtual reality environments.
How is the Metaverse revolutionising technology?
Several technologies enable the rise of Metaverse. Let us look at them.
It refers to the technology that allows you to access artificially created 3D computer-generated environments with the help of your senses.
Virtual Reality technology such as gloves, sensors, and VR provide software that allows users to transport to the virtual world. It allows an intermixing of visual and digital elements, and it is believed that in the future, it will enable greater integration with the Metaverse for physical simulation.
Most virtual realities do not give individual users much scope to change the environments created by developers. Metaverse, however, allows creating and sharing content and interaction at a bigger scale that allows one to change the environment.
Augmented Reality is the technology that allows one to view an enhanced version of reality while accessing a digital image of something. AR allows seeing the real-life world with augmented reality.
It can involve the use of devices such as smartphone cameras. Pokemon Go is an excellent example of an AR in game. The game allowed players to catch pokemon showing up in the real world with the help of their phones.
AR headset allows the gateway to the Metaverse. Some Metaverse experience already exists in gaming applications. However, companies like Apple, Google, and Meta are building AR technologies to access the it.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) uses machines to perform tasks that require human intelligence. AI technology can do different tasks like decision-making, perception, translation, etc.
AI has a lot of roles to play in the development of and sustenance of the Metaverse. It performs several functions that can be useful for it. It can help in the creation of digital avatars, which are an essential feature of the Metaverse experience.
AI can also process languages. It can automatically decode and encode languages into a form understandable by machines and another format understandable by others.
It can also build digital humans, which exist only on on this technology. These digital beings can interact like humans and perform certain functions.
AI also has a role in data learning that helps in marketing. It takes the previous outputs of a user and makes new outputs.
3D Printing Technology
3D printing is an additive process that allows material layering to create a product. A large number of industries today use this technology.
3D printing might have a use in the development of the Metaverse. 3D Printing help in developing headset prototypes for accessing virtual realities.
The end-use polymer parts in headsets can be manufactured in high volumes using 3D printing technology. One can customize the headsets for comfort. 3D printed devices can also have an impact on the management of heat in devices worn for a long time.
User-created shapes and objects can also be 3D printed for commercial offerings. Even 3D printing technology can help in designing gaming chairs for VR.
What are the implications of these changes?
The major implication is that it has become far easier to develop a completely virtual reality that can be paralleled with the real world.
Although in 2003, a big attempt was made at developing a platform called Second Life, and people invested money into that space, the lack of expansion led to its downgrade. However, over time newer technologies and advancements in Mixed Reality systems have come up, which makes the future of Metaverse more imminent.
With the rise of technology like AI and VR, Metaverse is not a distant dream. However, companies must make constant advancements in technology.
The current projects in Metaverse need strong influence constantly. One of the biggest setbacks of Second Life was the inability of the companies to prioritize engagement over profit.