If you’ve ever watched the Matrix, you can imagine that everything you see, feel, taste, touch, smell all around you might in fact, not be real, but instead the creation of some Artificial Intelligence program intent on making you its slave.
If you’re old enough, you might recall when the internet was considered a modern marvel. You could not only connect directly to other people and to tons of information, you could create your own personality and brand online, simply by creating a website. You contacted a domain brokerage, bought a domain name that suited your brand, and you created a new you outside the physical you.
But today, it’s possible that we will one day actually live inside a Matrix-like universe or metaverse where our avatar will take the place of our skin, bone, and blood. In fact, some people believe we might already be living inside metaverse and just don’t realize it.
The author of a new science article states that not long ago, while doing research for a virtual reality or VR program at MIT, he put on a VR headset and engaged in a game of ping-pong. The game was said to be so realistic that for a moment or two, it actually fooled the author’s brain. That said, when the game was over, he attempted to put the paddle down and lean on the table.
The table didn’t exist in the physical universe and he nearly fell over. That’s how easy it was to trick his senses into believing the virtual world was all too real. He took this notion a step further and started to consider the notion that this kind of new reality would affect all humanity once the metaverse technology was fully developed.
Say the experts there are 10 stages of tech development that will allow scientists to arrive at a Simulation Point. This is where you won’t be able to distinguish between the physical world and the virtual world. You also won’t be able to tell the difference between AI characters from real-life human beings.
With this in mind, it’s not a wild leap to believe that if our civilization is within reach of this kind of technology than another advanced civilization elsewhere in the true universe has already invented it, and that we could actually be living inside their Matrix-like AI world.
Enter Silicon Valley
The Simulation Point and its massive potential to be a digital game changer, if not life changer, has not gone unnoticed by the tech giants in Silicon Valley. The experts say they have already set their sights on engineering ultrarealistic simulations that are now being referred to as the metaverse.
Said to be “first coined by sci-fi writer Neal Stephenson back in 1992,” the metaverse consists of a interconnected virtual world that can potentially be tapped for education, entertainment, commerce, medicine, labor, and more. It is considered the next generation of the internet and it will be explored not with an old-fashioned web browser but instead, three-dimensional avatars like the ones created for popular video games such as Roblox and Fortnite.
It’s said that the metaverse has already moved well beyond sci-fi to become a “technosocial imaginary.” That is, a collective vision of the future and beyond that will turn vision into reality. Putting their money where their mouths are, Facebook recently changed its name to Meta and in turn, has committed $10 billion to building metaverse tech.
Not to be outdone, Microsoft recently announced their $69 billion play to buy out Activision Blizzard, the company that creates popular multiplayer online only games like World of Warcraft.
The current version of the metaverse is said to go way beyond the simple VR of a ping-pong match. Sooner than later, it will include augmented reality or AR, in which smart glasses can project objects into your physical world.
What this means is, if the database knows how much you like a certain brand of jelly donut, you might find yourself walking down the road only to spot your favorite jelly donut projected on a park bench, telling you a donut shop is right beside you or around the corner. This type of advertising is the wave of the future.
Portable digital goods along with currency in the form of cryptocurrency and NFTs or nonfungible tokens will also have a major place in the metaverse. Realistic characters will eventually be able to pass the Turing test. That is, a brain-computer interface or BCI that will not only allow you to control your own avatar with your own brain waves, but also to “beam signals from the metaverse directly into our brains.
This will make telling the virtual world apart from the physical world nearly impossible, begging the question, are you already living in the metaverse and just don’t realize it?