In a widely circulated video posted in October 2021, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has revealed that the company’s name has been changed to Meta.
During an hour-long video presentation, Zuckerberg moves back and forth between the real physical world and what he calls the metaverse — a reference to the three-dimensional appearance of the internet in the 1992 science fiction novel, “Snow Crash.” Essentially, the move indicates the company’s investment in virtual and augmented reality, which Zuckerberg saw as the future of the internet.
Shortly after Zuckerberg’s press release, Metaverse became the talk of the town. Memes spread on TwitterAnd Investments in big tech companies soared, and “metaverse” was named by Collins English Dictionary as the 2021 Best Word of the Year.
Since the hype surrounding metaverses has sparked a conversation about the future of virtual reality, some are speculating These disruptions can distract from important corporate ownership issues.
Gina Caravello, a professor of media arts in design, said the vague definition of metaverse has created myths about the word and sparked public interest, even though most people’s lives are already rooted in technology.
“The funny thing we didn’t really think about is that we’re already in the process of nascent virtual life, and it’s not like the metaverse is going to fall from the sky, and then we’re all going to be connected,” Caravello said.
Caravello, who tests virtual reality in his work, said that using the word “metaverse” creates a commercial association with Meta, giving Zuckerberg the ability to shape and control the immersive virtual ecosystem that already exists.
“The final component of the potion is the metaverse that becomes … a final kind of connection to all of our virtual resources in one pipeline,” said Caravello. “It just means we can’t wait for a billionaire to have all of this. We’re just sitting here waiting for the next person to put their fingerprints on them and integrate them all into the Amazon equivalent of a VR (virtual reality) world.”
While there is a lot of excitement surrounding the concept of the metaverse, there is a lot of it too doubts his ability to generalize, Including sophomore electrical engineering student Ilona Khoshaba.
“I mean, how many people have access to virtual reality? It’s really something that a few people have just for fun, or people who want to have it, can get dizzy. And then it’s very expensive,” Khoshaba said. Only the very wealthy… members of the truly upper middle class in the metaverse.”
Caravello said the company creating this virtual pipeline will need to increase the accessibility and efficiency of the equipment needed to engage in a 3D virtual world. The goal will be to make hardware cheaper and more elegant while integrating server vendors to create a global virtual world.
“Currently, one of those restrictions on “The work of virtual reality is we have different headphones, we have different vendors, we have different types of computers, we have all these different gadgets that are not kind of under one umbrella,” said Caravello.
It’s unclear how much Meta was involved in shaping the metaverse, said David Bosnak, the engineer working on the AI.
“I think Meta will be an integral part going forward (in the Metaverse). But I think the real purchase will come from someone who is smarter, younger and more determined in a way that is not necessarily meant to be monetised,” said Bousnak.
Besides accessibility, Bosnak added that Metaverse will need to organically acquire social capital in order for it to be more widely accepted.
“It would require a truly organic eruption of a particular community that creates something that people want to be a part of,” Bousnak said. “If a company tries to force you to say ‘No, that will be the next thing,’ everyone will rebel against it.”
One of the driving factors that will push the metaverse into the mainstream is the monetization of virtual entities, Professor of Communications Rick Dale said in an email statement.
“It’s not just about the graphics, the visuals, and the gaming experience. It’s about the economic inclinations that will connect ‘things’ in this digital world to people and things in the ‘real world’,” said Dell. “I think that will be the biggest change — it will be seeing things in the metaverse as something ‘worth,’ something that can be traded or sold in a new world of artifacts that will have an exchange rate with that which we still connect to the real world.”
Regardless of corporate investments, the Bruins and professionals think so Virtual reality remains a force to be reckoned with. In a world increasingly saturated with technology, it is easy to imagine a future in which the virtual world and the real world will become more intertwined.
“The 14-year-olds on VRChat will grow up with technology in ways they don’t want to give up,” Caravello said. “They are going to be 50 years old and they will always have a VRChat friend, or a friend from the VR platform they may not have met before. Maybe they will have a VR wife, you know, that’s not so far-fetched.