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What is a Metaverse? What is Unique About Mark Zuckerberg's Metaverse?

Shalom Solomon

Last week, Facebook announced its new name Meta which caused a bit of stir online. There have been interviews, articles and talk shows around the subject. Facebook also announced that the company will now be known as Meta. The change in the company's name is in lieu with the new vision set for the company. According to Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook - Meta will now be focusing on its new vision: creating a metaverse. 

Zuckerberg stated that the building of the metaverse will incur a cost of around 10 million Dollars this year and even more in subsequent years. He went further to state that the metaverse will lose money in the foreseeable, but Facebook can bear those losses. 


I mean, Facebook made around 86 billion Dollars in sales and 29.1 billion Dollars net profit last year alone. So, it should be able to shoulder any losses incurred by the project.

Facebook is rebranded to Meta

What is a Metaverse?

The term metaverse is not entirely new. It has been used some decades or so ago before the tech billionaire adopted it for his current project.


The metaverse is a digital reality that combines aspects of social media, online gaming, augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR) and cryptocurrency to enable users interact virtually. Basically, the metaverse is a shared virtual space that can only be accessed through the internet. 

The application of virtual reality and augmented reality technologies in the metaverse gives users a sense of being, or a presence in the virtual space. Thereby changing what should have been a flat digital experience to a wholesome virtual experience. The most popular applications of VR and AR are video games such as World of Warcraft which has a client base of over 5 Million paying subscribers. 

When was the term Metaverse first used?

The term Metaverse was first used in a 1992 sci-fi best seller, Snow Crash written by Neal Stephenson. 


In the book, the main character is a hacker and a pizza delivery guy conveniently named Hiro Protagonist. Hiro travels back and forth from the real world to a 3D virtual cityscape that spans over 40,000 miles. The cityscape was called the "Metaverse". 

The concept of Snow Crash was said to have inspired the Matrix Series and the recent 2018 movie, Ready Player One. 

Is Facebook's Metaverse the first?

 Actually, it isn't. Around 2003, a three-dimensional, web-based alternative reality Second Life was launched by Phillip Rosendale. 


By 2007, Second Life peaked and garnered roughly over one million subscribers. The users navigated Second Life using customizable avatars and had access to a wide variety of virtual activities on the space. 

Coincidentally, the launch of Facebook contributed to the downfall of Second Life. Now it's subscriber base has fallen to half its initial number. 

Facebook's Metaverse

The "metaverse" is a set of virtual spaces where you can create and explore with other people who aren't in the same physical space as you. According to the Meta official website, users will be able to hang out with friends, work, play, learn, shop, create and more. Its not necessarily about spending more time online " its about making the time you do spend online more meaningful. 


Facebook's metaverse is quite interesting. According to the Company, the Metaverse will not be controlled by a single company. It will have interoperability across services to enable different companies work together.

Comments

Jhon Doe

- 20 October, 2018

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Jhon Doe

- 20 October, 2018

Lorem ipsum dolor sit, amet consectetur adipisicing elit. Accusamus numquam assumenda hic aliquam vero sequi velit molestias doloremque molestiae dicta?

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