We are continuing our series on the evolution of the internet with Web 3.0. Every Monday in the month of January we are covering a different aspect of the new distributed internet, which most people associate with crypto-currencies like Bitcoin.
On today’s show we’re talking about virtual land on the internet. There are a number of startups that are creating virtual worlds. There is a big bet being made that virtual reality will move out of the early adopter phase into becoming more mainstream.
Facebook is placing a large bet on these virtual worlds, and they even changed the name of the company to Meta to reflect their bet on the metaverse. The internet has evolved from text to images to video. But video is not the end of the line. There is a far more immersive experience possible, whether it’s a real live video connection, like we experience today on zoom, or a virtual reality platform.
The Meta product is called the Sandbox. All of the items inside a metaverse like land, furniture, avatars, clothing, artwork are made up of tokens. In the language of web 3.0, these are called non-fungible tokens or NFT’s. The first of these worlds is a game called Horizon Worlds.
Some skeptics think there is no intrinsic value in these virtual systems. But that ignore the economic value of the entire gaming industry. The gaming industry is well established and clearly worth millions. Most of the advanced games on consoles like the Xbox or the Playstation have some version of an immersive virtual reality experience. But the spoils go to the platform owners and the software developers. These are relatively closed systems and the concentration of wealth is in the hands of a few. Web 3.0 hopes to democratize that. I personally have my doubts that it will happen.
There needs to be interoperability between different platforms. You need to know that you own your avatar, and your tokens not the platform.
Today the largest truly decentralized metaverse is on a platform called Decentraland.
This is a virtual world with avatars that you can use to explore the locations. You can buy real estate in these worlds and you can resell the real estate. Like in the real world, you can visit places.
Host: Victor Menasce