What is the Metaverse?
We are about to enter an impressive era, building the future, the way we interact with society, if you are interested in this topic an interesting adaptation to our near future awaits you. Imagine a tool that allows us to meet people from all over the world, visit worlds created by the creativity of the community, buy and sell goods, create content, communities, basically it is the internet we have today, but the premise of the metaverse is that all these interactions happen in a 3D world, either a totally virtual world or a mixed reality world where virtual aspects are combined with the real environment. While our current metaverse happens through a 2D world, and we access it through our computers, cell phones, consoles, smart speakers, the future metaverse will be accessed through all these devices, but its main focus will be through virtual reality or augmented reality devices. The word Metaverse inherits from Universe all its characteristics and combines them with the concept of Meta, which refers to something that refers to itself as metadata that is data that has information about other data. In this case, the metaverse refers to a virtual platform where we create universes with communities, jobs, learning, economy, communication and entertainment, all connected to each other, creating the great metaverse. Of course, the word metaverse is just a label for this concept, in the future another word may be used to refer to the same thing.
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Whatsapp, Youtube, Twitch, to mention a few, are places on the internet where millions of people meet and interact every day, here we find communities of all niches, people communicating with their friends by video call, sending messages to their friends, also buying things through online stores, using credit lines from technology companies like stori or rappi, consuming multimedia content and streaming video games. All these activities are the daily life of millions of people and are even the way many of them make a living, but there is a big problem. Scalability which is roughly speaking the ability to make something grow, today an average content creator creates content for youtube, takes clips to upload it to facebook and tiktok, takes his merch for sale with shopify and publishes all his ads to the community on discord or twitter, however he lacks ownership over his content, all those videos, likes, followers and comments, do not belong to the content creator. All the information we give to the platforms where we interact is stored in the computers (servers) of these companies, therefore they own all that information, they are even the owners and creators of most of the processes of the businesses that use these technologies, so if one day these companies change the way their tool works, your business would have to change the way it works, involving unnecessary costs and time or they could even totally block the access to the information that is supposed to be yours if they wanted to. Currently, Google and Microsoft are the owners of our identity on the internet, since the moment we create an account on any platform, we create it using our gmail _or _hotmail, this represents a serious problem because we are subject to the authority of these companies that have the power to censor us, since they own all our data. On the side of virtual reality, facebook _now meta, leads the market with the launch of virtual reality glasses quest 2, thanks to this hundreds of thousands of new people have been interested in this technology, which points to a good adoption in the coming years, however the biggest challenge we have with this technology is the control we have as users over the worlds with which we interact, there is _VR Chat, Rec Room, Meta Horizons, these are the most popular metaverses that exist at this time for virtual reality users, where they can visit worlds, meet new people and express themselves using any kind of avatar you can imagine, however as users we have no control over what happens in these platforms, since the companies that own these metaverses dictate the rules and changes that happen in these worlds, another important issue I would like to mention is that these current metaverses do not have a system of economy or property, as people in these worlds we can not own anything, much less buy or sell goods. Remember we are talking about metaverses in virtual reality. There are also 2D metaverses, such as decentraland, the sandbox, world wide webb, which have the characteristics that virtual reality metaverses do not have. These 2D metaverses live on blockchain technologies, which allows users to own the places or things they interact with, for example you can buy apartments (in opensea which is basically an amazon of NFTS) that you can use in the world wide webb metaverse that range from 2. 14 ETH which is approximately $6,300 DLLS, where you can decorate it with your own NFT's, invite your friends and chat inside this apartment, you can also sell it to another person or give it away if you want, because you are the owner of this piece of software that represents an apartment in a virtual world, neither google nor _microsoft _or epic games are owners of this digital asset, but only you. Your NFTS, cryptocurrencies, the history of transactions you have made, all this is stored in a wallet (digital wallet), more on this later.
To solve these problems, different technologies have been developing that come to evolve the way we interact with the internet, with the help of web3, blockchain technology and virtual reality.
State of these technologies
It is important to take into account the current state of these technologies needed to build the metaverse. First, what is web 3? It is the evolution of the internet that we use today, which allows us to have services such as social networks, cloud computing, real-time services, among many others. It needs to be open and decentralized, platforms built on web 3, exist on open protocols that do not require third parties or intermediaries. For example, unlike a centralized social network like facebook *_that exists on company computers, a decentralized web 3 social network exists on the computers of a decentralized network on the blockchain like *_ethereum. The participants of these platforms own their own content and receive ownership of their profiles on the platforms. For example, in a decentralized social network your information belongs to you as a user not to the owner of the platform. This technology will allow us to create decentralized worlds or platforms where economies will exist by exchanging digital assets. These digital assets will be represented by money, contracts, properties, etc... Currently this technology already exists, however the use of it is very low due to the problems of scalability, user friendly interfaces, and standardization that it faces. First, what is a blockchain, think of it this way, the current internet is composed of various servers (computers) that we access every day like facebook, instagram, twitter. A blockchain represents the same but built in a different way, instead of accessing the computers of the companies, we access a network of "private" computers connected to each other, where the information of all these applications is stored, no one owns these applications because no one owns all the computers on the network, but this shared database exists thanks to the joint work of a community of people who come together to create the network. Decentralized networks or block chains such as Solana, Cardano _and _Ethereum, store applications that exist in parts in all computers in the network at the same time, these applications are known as Smart Contracts, these contracts allow interacting with them through transactions. We need standardization in the technologies needed to build web 3 projects, as we need to develop these standards for massive adaptation by developers, thus facilitating the development path and obtaining a greater flow of decentralized application development. Virtual and augmented reality are also necessary technologies for the future vision of the internet, currently the company Meta, formerly facebook _is the one that dominates the virtual reality industry with its _Meta Quest 2 device, and _Apple _dominates on the side of augmented reality, which although they do not have a device dedicated to this has been responsible for equipping their cell phones with augmented reality technology and has developed much technology needed to develop AR and XR applications. The biggest problems presented by these technologies fall in the hardware area with the need for more immersive devices that allow us to express body language and on the other hand, like web 2, decentralization.
I propose the following concept, create a virtual world that is accessed through a browser or a native application, where there are properties and streets that connect them. The ownership of a property is described in a NFT through a smart contract, this property allows you to host a server where multiple systems can exist, both the systems and the server must allow interaction through virtual reality or augmented reality. A property can be a store with its point of sale systems, inventory, etc.. It can also be an office with an assistant system, computers, or it can also be a video game room. The streets represent the connections between these properties, thus creating cities, where users can walk down the street and enter establishments, buy things, open businesses, have personalized homes, all this on a layer of technologies that allow users to create on this universe.