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That’s right! The metaverse doesn’t exist or at least it’s not yet fully formed.
People try to describe what the Metaverse is, but they always present it as though it’s an entity that’s already there. In fact, nobody can actually define Metaverse as an existing thing because we don’t know exactly what it’ll be!

Games like Minecraft, Roblox and Fortnite provide a tease of what the metaverse could be like. And companies like Meta and Microsoft are experimenting with building their online realms.

What exactly is the metaverse?

The term has existed for decades. It’s actually a longtime science-fiction dream. Have you ever read or seen Ready Player One?

The term that was first coined by Neal Stephenson in his 1992 cyberpunk novel, Snow Crash.2
He used it to describe a futuristic version of the internet where people would meet with avatars and communicate through gestures and sensory information.

The metaverse is the evolution of the internet. It will be a virtual world that parallels our “real lives”.

In one sense, the internet is an iteration of the internet as we live out our lives through social media, working, shopping and gaming online. However the idea that has captivated so many is a more immersive experience. With VR headsets becoming more and more accessible for the everyday gamer, being able to have our online interactions fully integrated is more an expression of the true meaning of the metaverse.

“The defining quality of the metaverse will be a feeling of presence — like you are right there with another person or in another place.” – Mark Zuckerberg1

Ever since Zuckerberg announced Facebook’s future would be in the metaverse, everyone has been rushing to figure out what the concept even means and applying it to their brands.

But the truth is: Metaverse is still an idea!

The NFT community sees the Metaverse as an actual physical place with some imaginary stuff on it. Stop thinking of Metaverses as objects and instead see them as processes. If you look at how technologies evolve they first exist as ideas, then there are some implementations based on those ideas that show everyone that the idea can work in practice (even if not yet very well), and then people start talking about the practical use in earnest.

It’s highly unlikely that the Metaverse will ever be a single thing. Instead, it’ll be sort of like TCP/IP or HTML – different Metaverses based on different ideas co-existing together. Think of Metaverse as a standardization process for connecting virtual worlds together. Built on top of Ethereum, Ethereum + holochains, etc or maybe they’re Metaverses for some other reason. An open standard – because metaverses don’t have to be based on Ethereum or any other blockchain!

Early stages

The difficulty with claiming the existence of a metaverse is that, by definition, it will continually be expanding and evolving, much like if you compare the early internet of the 80’s and 30 years later to the internet of today. You could even say that the metaverse is mirroring the infancy of the internet in terms of compatibility, available technology, and usage, or you could say that the metaverse is another evolution of the internet.

We’re entering the early years of exploring what a Metaverse actually is. There’ll probably be a number of Metaverses in short succession to test out all the cool ideas in practice. They may not look anything alike and could even conflict with each other in terms of various features. But eventually we should see some Metaverses become dominant because they solve the most problems well enough. Metaverses that fall out of favour may just keep existing in their own niches or they could die off and be forgotten.

Right now we’re still in the embryonic stage, so Metaverses don’t even exist yet! But soon someone will launch one and we’ll enter a new Metaverseist era beyond what we can imagine right now. 

There are still a lot of questions regarding the metaverse. Here are some:

– Will there be one or many?

– How will it all be connected?

– What kind of equipment will be necessary?

– Who is going to pay for it, and how?

What we do know is:

It’s already happening and it’s inevitable. The whole concept is still evolving, but the metaverse will be a part of our future.

Not created or owned by one company. Some big players are already trying to build the metaverse. But for the rest 99% of businesses, it’s still a matter of sitting back and watching the future unroll. Just like the advent of social media and business integration with platforms in order to grow their audience. However with businesses growing wise to how much socials help their bottom line, we may very well see some closely following the market ready to join earlier than they would have previously.

The Metaverse is supposed to be one virtual, immersive world. It can contain multiple games and all of the data for them. There are precursors to what it could potentially achieve. For example World of Warcraft has its own metaverse while Second Life has another one that allows players from both games into one virtual world at the same time even though they are incompatible.

The Metaverse is an online landscape where people experience each other’s presence through avatars. A future Metaverse would be a new Internet infrastructure: One single, unifying platform for people all over the globe to communicate and share information with each other via visual representations called avatar and sensor-equipped tools and objects.

What’s next?

As mentioned before Metaverse can contain all data from a single game, a set of different games or completely separate worlds. Right now the closest iterations of the metaverse exist solely through video games with either VR headset capabilities or online RPGs. The true definition of the metaverse is an expansion of our current universe, which means much more than just playing video games. Our lives online reflected in the online universe that has real capacity for interactivity. Potential options – businesses run entirely through the metaverse, living spaces for collectable online-only items, social interactions, banking, and more. There are already digital retailers selling exclusively digital fashion which only has use in the digital sphere.

Almost everyone assumes that it will replace conventional Internet as we know it since it’s is supposed to be a lot more effective. It will have virtual reality features and technologies that are already being used. Metaverses are expected to have augmented reality interfaces, advanced artificial intelligence and advanced infrastructure capable of handling massive data transfer rates. These technologies are under development today so the metaverse might come true tomorrow or years from now.

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