Predicting the tech-future

Following my yesterday's post about predictions of the tech-future (one predicted a Dystopian world controlled by Linden Labs in 2016, the other an overall controll of the tech-world by Google in 2017), now here's a link to an article talking about an upcoming paper that represents the result of a summit and they will "define/predict" a "metaverse roadmap". Yes, I know, having a bunch of folks in the industry "decide" a roadmap for such a thing is, well... ahem, anyway, the article is quite interesting, and gives us some food for thoughts. They predict that we'll have such a world and metaverse (first self, second self and mixed self) in 10 years from now (2017). They think that the upcoming tech-world is going to have four basic metaverse kinds:
  • dubbed augmented reality
  • lifelogging
  • virtual worlds
  • mirror worlds
For starts, I really don't think that you can apply the world metaverse for any of those items but the third: virtual worlds. The concept of metaverse appeared with the excelent book "Snow Crash", and defines a Virtual World with certain characteristics, but it is a virtual world.

But let's talk about those four items there.

Dubbed augmented reality is a concept where technology enables you to have an allways-persent body-widget that lets you know more about the reality that envolves you. Think about Plazes on steroids, in a allways-present device (like the eye-screening we see on GiTS), that enables you to have any kind of info about where you are, realtime. You can enhance the concept and think about stuff like getting info about people as you look at them and that sort of stuff. Possible? Yes, even probable, but that isn't a Metaverse, it makes me recall more other aspects in Snow Crash...

Like lifelogging. Remember that guys on Snow Crash that did something like wearing a full-body gadget-suit that was used to stream images into the future version of YouTube? Well, consider that lifeblogging with a little of the previous item (correlation between video footage and the people in that footage, and stuff like that).

On virtual worlds, it seems that what's been talked is about a more immersive version of Second Life, as the previous predictions also talked about. On a side note, while the previous prediction talked about Linden Labs (the company behind Second Life) buying google, in this event the general ideas were on whether would Google create GoogleOS and Microsoft would buy Linden Labs, positioning Google as the developing mega-softwarehouse with the future of Operating Systems, and Microsoft as less a technological company and more like a big pocket of money available to investiment, which isn't really surprising if you notice that we have really nothing innovative from Microsoft for years (the Wow from Vista is a big pile of FUD about a defective Operating System with nothing innovative compared to the alternatives). I intend to write soon more about my own visions of the future of Virtual Worlds real soon. And no, I don't believe that Second Life will turn into the "final and perfect VW", as much as I don't think that WOW (not Vista's Wow but World of Warcraft) is to be the ultimate MMORPG. Oh, and the nobody-knows-what-this-is extremely-hiped areae isn't going to have persistence, which is a big no-no for me (even if I usually agree with his vision on VW's.

Last but not least mirror worlds, which makes me remembers this list of Games on Google Maps. Mirror worlds are defined as virtual worlds like ours, with places like ours: a real representation of the "first world" but where people are only virtually, without meshing virtual with real people. I really don't see this happening unless you're trying to do something like Idlewild.

The final article is yet to be released, but I'll surelly be a reader of it.