On the panel “The Minds That Imagined the Metaverse,” moderated by Emfarsis Director Leah Callon-Butler at Consensus 2022, the renowned science fiction author who coined the term “metaverse,” Neal Stephenson, and the computer scientist credited with founding virtual reality, Jaron Lanier, discussed how they envision the future of the Metaverse and VR.
Neal stated that he had observed two transformative paradigm shifts that revolutionized how people perceived and interacted with the digital world. The first of these was the widespread accessibility of 3D computer graphics, empowering individuals and creatives to explore their creativity in unprecedented ways. The second was the advent of social media, which has not only reshaped the way we interact with people but has also given rise to a new economic model. Large tech companies can now harness vast amounts of data and information coming from every move we make on various online platforms.
Another point Neal raised was that the significance of the social element in digital interactions is what makes it feel real, creating a contrast between physical interactions and virtual experiences. With a plethora of different emotions, there is a sense of genuineness that blurs the distinction between such experiences. However, Jaron Lanier responded by emphasizing that despite the rapid change brought about by technological advancements, it is concerning that no positive narratives have arisen about the future of young people.
On creating value on the blockchain, Jaron also said that everything was based on going back to square one. For instance, an investment in a token or NFT might increase in value if there is demand for it, but it is an entirely different story if someone can reuse it to build value, thus creating a value chain within the blockchain by uniting them.
Watch the full panel here:
“The Minds That Imagined the Metaverse and VR” by CoinDesk’s Consensus 2022
Published August 4, 2022, on CoinDesk