Ian Khan

Ian Khan is an emerging technology futurist and author, as well as a technology filmmaker whose work has been featured on Amazon Prime. Creator of the Future Readiness Score, he works with organizations worldwide to help them become future ready. Ian has been featured on CNN and the BBC and in Forbes and Fast Company. Ian is also a LinkedIn Learning Instructor.

Articles From Ian Khan

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Video Gaming in the Metaverse

Article / Updated 07-28-2023

Listen to the article:Download audio Video gaming experiences in the metaverse are at an early stage of development. Developments and improvements in hardware and software technologies will significantly ramp up the quality and overall visual appeal of metaverse environments. Experiences will become more vivid, and activities, such as skiing, hiking, and surfing, can all seem very real with hardware that’s custom-built for these activities. When people talk about the metaverse, the online game Second Life inevitably comes up, and with good reason. Second Life is the first real metaverse-style game. Participants in Second Life create avatars to represent themselves in the game and essentially live an alternate, “second” life where they have friends, responsibilities, a home, and a virtual social life. It’s a persistent world that changes in real time. The elements and features of Second Life are what many games today model themselves after. Of course, since Second Life debuted in 2003, the technology in today’s games has advanced significantly. Second Life is still around and going strong, thanks to improved features and graphics, ease of use, and the fact that it’s free. Even though the game is free, there are plenty of things you can buy with real money in Second Life, including virtual land, clothing, and more. Second Life features a marketplace with millions of items — from fashion to a café for your virtual home and more. There are thousands of virtual experiences and communities to interact with, making it the longest-running example of an immersive metaverse experience. Some other online games that are using the concept of the metaverse include the following: Fortnite: Very popular, and one of the first interactive games that used the idea of the metaverse. Users can join Fortnite and engage in various play scenarios. Horizon Worlds: Created by Meta (previously known as Facebook), Horizon Worlds offers users the ability to make friends in the metaverse. Users can play games, join fun activities, attend group classes, and enjoy other social aspects. Roblox: Users on Roblox can create different worlds within the Roblox environment, make friends, and interact with others in many different ways. The Sandbox: As a participant you can join the Sandbox world and interact with various places that have been built by others. This could be virtual offices, play areas, art galleries, museums, and others. As a land owner, you can create a facility and create a place for others to visit. Star Atlas: A space exploration–based world in which users can visit various places in a hypothetical metaverse-based galaxy and interact with others through many experiences. These are some of the larger and more impressive options that have metaverse worlds up and running right now. Some of these platforms, including The Sandbox and Star Atlas, utilize the blockchain and cryptocurrency. Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are becoming popular in metaverse games as well. Getting the tools you need to play metaverse games To truly experience a metaverse world, you need the right tools. Most of the time, this includes some kind of virtual reality (VR) hardware or headset. Here’s a general list of items you should have: A gaming PC, console, or mobile device A high-bandwidth Internet connection of 10 megabits per second (Mbps) and above (in my opinion, 100 Mbps is ideal) A VR headset Cryptocurrency or game-specific currency if you plan to buy or trade within a game A comfortable seat A safe space without any objects that may be delicate, easy to damage, or dangerous (Gameplay can sometimes get highly interactive and injury is common.) This list may change as new hardware devices bring added functionality to the metaverse. New gaming hardware may include haptic feedback gloves, for example, that shake and vibrate during gameplay, or odor-generating accessories that may emit the smell of a forest, café, or wherever you are in the metaverse. Upcoming technologies for metaverse gaming Here are some other technologies that are likely to play a part within the metaverse gaming area: Blockchain Blockchain establishes a new way of building databases and creating decentralized communities. Over the last decade, blockchain technology has grown in popularity; today, it’s seen as a foundational technology that can help different industries create products, solutions, and other technologies. Within the gaming industry, blockchain can help create secure transactional mechanisms to exchange data, store information, buy and sell items, and fundamentally alter the way security works online. With the expansion of blockchain technology, its impact may also permeate online banking and asset creation. This is already seeing an uptake with the creation of NFTs. Cryptocurrency The exchangeable digital assets that also function as proprietary currency within gaming worlds in the metaverse are primarily cryptocurrencies. Today, many gamers use proprietary gaming currencies to transact; these include MANA for Decentral and ROBUX for Roblox. With the evolution of the metaverse, it’s highly likely that gaming providers will begin creating their own cryptocurrencies to create value for gamers to stay within a platform. Other currencies in use include Ethereum. IoT IoT stands for the Internet of Things, meaning devices —including gaming controllers and headsets — that are connected to the Internet. As game controllers become more connected and functional, their usage within the metaverse is up to the creativity of creators. Game controllers typically have more functionality in one direction. This means that users are able to control many interactions in a typical game with their controller, but controllers are unable to respond back in a similar number of ways. For example, controllers may only be able to vibrate through haptic feedback when an event occurs in a game environment. Future added functionality of controllers can expand in many directions. This means the addition of more sensors that can record different types of data, such as eye movement, hand humidity, breathing rate, or other factors as needed. The IoT is currently being used in smart homes and smart industries and has a number of uses that go beyond the metaverse. NFTs NFTs are a subcategory of digital assets created through blockchain technology. The application of NFTs is primarily in being able to provide access to a unique blockchain-generated digital asset category. As an example, an NFT created by a gaming provider could provide gamers access to specific sections of a game or unlock hidden aspects within a game period. NFTs can be purchased and sold in the metaverse and can be of value for a short term or for perpetuity. The application of NFTs also expands to digital avatar assets — for example, fashion brands now offer digital clothing for avatars, primarily sold as an NFT. These can be purchased in the metaverse or through an NFT trading platform (such as OpenSea) or be traded within the gaming platform. The frontrunners in metaverse development Many large companies are starting to get deeper into the idea of building metaverses of their own. Most have visions of becoming the “one true metaverse” to which everyone is going to flock. Of course, only time will tell what happens with each of their endeavors. Some of the companies that are at the forefront of metaverse development include the following. Epic Games Epic Games is the founder of the Unreal Engine technology, which has been making waves due to its ability to create 3D graphics with highly impressive resolution and accuracy. The Unreal Engine is used in movie production and other applications, and as a result, it has been very well received over the metaverse. Meta Meta’s metaverse games are primarily driven by its hardware technology. The Quest series of VR headsets provides access to Meta’s Horizon Worlds metaverse. Horizon Worlds is probably one of the most popular metaverses due to the extremely large user base on Facebook that can easily join the metaverse game with a pair of VR glasses or headset. There is also a natural integration between Facebook (the social media platform) and Horizon Worlds (the metaverse gaming platform). Both can be accessed with a single login, which is your Facebook credential, and following the next steps is easy. Meta is expanding its Horizon Worlds metaverse to include live gaming, group fitness classes, and other activities that suit individuals interested in interactive group activities. Microsoft Microsoft has been extremely successful with its existing gaming platforms, but they’re more 2D driven. (Games such as Minecraft are purely 2D.) In early 2022, Microsoft bought Activision Blizzard for $75 billion, one of the highest-priced gaming acquisitions up to that point. Activision Blizzard is a leading online gaming company, and this acquisition is likely to pave the way for Microsoft to rival Meta and its metaverse offerings. Niantic Gaming company Niantic has been behind games like Pokémon Go, which was probably one of the first AR games available that was accessible over a cell phone or smartphone. Niantic is believed to be building a platform for AR-based games that will also utilize a 3D map of the world. NVIDIA Although not a primary gaming provider, NVIDIA is building and expanding the metaverse into an industrial category. By equipping different industries to use the metaverse, NVIDIA plans to make the metaverse accessible and help designers use the 3D workspace to build better products in the metaverse. NVIDIA is creating its own version of the metaverse, called the omniverse, and its approach is based on building the metaverse from the ground up. Roblox Corporation Roblox Corporation owns Roblox, a popular metaverse game that offers users the ability to create worlds and customize game environments. Roblox is one of the newer entrants into the online and VR gaming category. Roblox also has its own currency, ROBUX, that can be used to purchase items within the game. The types of metaverse games that are being played can vary greatly. However, with some of these companies, you should expect to see a change in the way the metaverse and games are presented. It will likely be more akin to how Second Life works, but it’ll likely use VR or AR, at least, instead of requiring you to interact with a keyboard and screen. Of course, time will tell what works and what people want from these types of experiences.

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8 Major Metaverse Platforms

Article / Updated 03-01-2023

The metaverse is ultimately a three-dimensional medium of communication or a channel. Within this channel, there are many elements. The most defining one is an artificially created 3D environment. Providers have created various 3D environments that are referred to as metaverse platforms. These platforms offer different levels of interactivity and experience. Some offer the ability to meet other users on the platform and engage in a game, while others offer the ability to collaborate on 3D design and industrial applications. The metaverse is just evolving and is at a very initial stage. There is a lot to look forward to! Following, is a roundup of eight established metaverse platforms (there are many more than this) and two that are in development. This roundup offers summaries only. For more information about these platforms, including how to create accounts on them, and the various features they offer, check out my book Metaverse For Dummies. Horizon Worlds Horizon Worlds (shown above) is a metaverse world created by Meta (formerly the Facebook company). It features entertainment, gaming, live shows, and celebrity appearances. As a product of Meta, Horizon Worlds naturally appeals to a wide range of users. As of late 2022, a collection of interesting experiences is available on Horizon Worlds: Social network: Horizon Worlds serves as a social network where you can meet with friends, play games, work out as a group, or engage in activities such as creating a new world. Gaming: You can play games, get into group gaming with others, and enter competitions. You can also compete, win rewards, and gain social status within the specific gaming environment by earning points. Fitness: Horizon Worlds offers fitness classes, games, and other fitness apps that users can engage with, using the platform as a fitness companion. Entertainment: Entertainment includes live concerts with celebrity performers, singers, and events worldwide. You can get access to front-row seats and watch your performers live. Ultimately, you’ll be able to use Horizon Worlds for entertainment or work. Meta is expanding the Horizon Worlds platform to offer workplace collaboration tools. This includes the ability to create virtual rooms in your workplace and meet with your colleagues and teammates in a virtual environment. Most experiences on Meta require the Meta Quest 2 headset. The headset connects to Horizon Worlds through your Meta account. NVIDIA Omniverse NVIDIA is known for producing some of the best-regarded high-power graphics hardware. Furthering this work in the metaverse, NVIDIA has launched a new VR-based collaboration platform called the Omniverse. The Omniverse platform is best suited for designers of 3D and virtual objects, because it consists (or will consist) of a platform where activities mostly involve designing rather than entertainment. The Omniverse is an industrial metaverse, but it may host games in the future. This platform is a good fit for people who want to explore industrial design and other related items. NVIDIA has also announced that it’s working on plans for creating the largest industrial metaverse through its industry partnerships with companies such as Siemens and Pixar. The NVIDIA Omniverse will also help in game development to create ultra-realistic 3D models instead of becoming a gaming platform itself, at least according to announcements made thus far. Decentraland Decentraland is one of the first metaverse platforms. It was launched in February 2020 and is owned by the Decentraland Foundation, a nonprofit. Most experiences on the platform include visiting areas within the platform, also referred to as properties or lands, owned by other users and experiencing what they’ve built. Genesis Plaza is the first place where users land when they log in (see below). As of this writing, Decentraland has 90,601 parcels of land that are privately owned by users. Each land parcel is also essentially a non-fungible token, or NFT. This means that each land parcel has a unique address, can’t be forged, can’t be duplicated on the platform, and has permanent rights allocated on a blockchain database. To be able to buy and sell land on Decentraland, you need to have a MetaMask wallet account and have MANA to spend. MANA is Decentraland’s proprietary cryptocurrency. The Sandbox The Sandbox is a popular metaverse platform where users can play different types of games and buy land as an NFT. Sandbox is an Ethereum-based metaverse platform. This means that the proprietary token of Sandbox, MANA, is based on Ethereum protocols for authentication and exchange. It follows certain rules, and any data regarding its purchase or sale is stored on the Ethereum blockchain. Users who own the land can develop it by creating games within their lands. Similar to Decentraland, The Sandbox provides options for gamification. It has more of a video game feel to it than Decentraland does. The image below shows a high-level map of the Sandbox platform, including virtual properties currently purchased and land available for sale. Voxels Voxels is a Ethereum-based metaverse platform. Voxels consists of virtual land, roads, architecture, and other elements from the real world. Experiences on Voxels are primarily based around buying a piece of virtual land on the platform and developing it — creating games, organizing a concert, or even embedding audio or video on your land to make it into an entertainment venue. Voxels is focusing more on the NFT side of the metaverse, meaning users are able to buy and sell NFTs. The platform has the look and feel of a gaming environment that looks like a city with roads and buildings organized into various districts. Somnium Space Somnium Space, shown below, promises a game world where the company itself has no ownership of any asset within the game. Somnium Space is based on Ethereum and Solana blockchain tokens and is focusing on player-led land parcels and in-game items. On Somnium Space, users will have the security of ownership of all assets and the ability to trade assets through decentralized marketplaces. Users will also have access to tools, such as a software development kit (SDK) and a Somnium Space builder app that can help create your own virtual world within. With an authenticity of origin, the experiences are focused on creating a world with its own economy and currency. Users can build, trade, and play on a PC or through a dedicated VR device. Somnium Space promises a cross-browser game available on all major headsets. This means the platform will be available on all web browsers and will work with all VR headsets. Roblox Roblox is one of the first metaverse games. It features a world where game players can create their own buildings, roads, and structures. The image below shows a view from inside the platform. Roblox allows users to create avatars with a variety of physical features and accessories. Users, particularly younger people, enjoy customizing their avatars. Fashion brands are also showing high interest in Roblox, because they can sell their digital avatar clothes and accessories. Co-play and co-creation are two key parts of the overall Roblox design. Users are encouraged to play with other users. For this reason, the game has come under criticism for not being suitable for players younger than 12. More than 40 million people play Roblox every day. This metaverse game has quickly scaled and is one of the most popular games available. As a popular platform, Roblox is one of the more heavily advertised spaces in the metaverse. It could be a good place for you to think about advertising your goods or services if the demographic matches your buyers. Bloktopia Bloktopia features a 21-story building with various levels that form the entire Bloktopia metaverse. The platform is also a decentralized open-source virtual world which means. It offers a platform based on blockchain technology. The 21 levels of the skyscraper were specifically created to pay homage to the 21 million Bitcoins that can ever be generated. Bloktopia token holders are called Bloktopians. Here are some of the things Bloktopians can do on the platform: Buy Bloktopia land parcels Offer advertising space to generate revenue Play games Build personal networks Meet people Bloktopia wants to position itself as a central hub to learn everything about crypto and eliminate the confusion and deep learning curve associated with cryptocurrencies. As such, it features an open and friendly environment where people can meet and learn. Coming soon Epic Games Epic Games is one of the largest gaming industry technology infrastructure providers in the world today, and it’s considering developing its own platform for the metaverse. In 2022, Epic Games signed a deal with WPP (the world’s largest advertising agency) and formed a partnership with LEGO to construct a kid-friendly metaverse. The Epic Unreal 3D virtual scene generating technology, also known as the EPIC Unreal Engine, is a highly popular gaming industry graphics engine that allows game designers, creators, and developers to develop highly realistic 3D objects, people, surfaces, textures, lighting, and audio within a virtual environment. Epic technology has gained recognition when it comes to the quality of the Unreal Engine output. The Epic Unreal Engine is also used in filmmaking to create ultra-realistic artificial film scenes. Epic’s goal is to be able to create experiences that are indistinguishable from real life and the results so far are stunning. Check out some of the virtual 3D samples at www.unrealengine.com. With technology such as the Unreal Engine, a big revolution in high-quality graphics in the metaverse could be around the corner. Sony Sony has emerged as a very successful gaming industry conglomerate. Sony owns the PlayStation line of products, which has sold more than 100 million units worldwide since its release in 1994. Sony PlayStation features hundreds of popular games and best sellers, including God of War: Ragnarok, Grand Theft Auto, and others. The Sony PlayStation Network (PSN) has more than 100 million active users today, making it one of the top gaming hardware consoles ever produced. Sony is believed to be working on a metaverse platform for live sports broadcasts, where users can view athletes competing or playing various sports in a metaverse space. It doesn’t have a platform entirely focused on the metaverse, but the company is expected to become part of various metaverse platforms through PlayStation Network and potentially look at the metaverse as a long-term strategy, according to announcements made by its leadership. The metaverse is brand new. It’s just in the very early stage of evolution,. Today the metaverse is mainly confined to a VR headset or a computer screen. But future focus and iterations can and are likely to develop as a result of the convergence of hardware and graphics technologies.

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How the Metaverse Can Be Used in Business

Article / Updated 02-22-2023

Listen to the article:Download audio When assessing what the metaverse can do for business, I look at tangible benefits and consider the steps a business needs to take to integrate the metaverse into their workings. Here are some of the tangible benefits the metaverse can provide for businesses: A new channel of engagement to connect with younger audiences Speed of delivery for products and services Ecommerce enablement for metaverse-based customers High-resolution digital experiences Ease of deployment and creation of digital engagement Elimination of the need for in-person availability What industry analysts are saying Most industry analysts agree that the metaverse has a tremendous amount of potential. A word of caution, though: Any indication of where the metaverse is headed is the opinion of the expert or organization and should not be taken at face value. As a general industry guidance, their information can help you understand where things are going, but for your own business needs, do your due diligence and consult with your advisors and investors before making any major business decisions about the metaverse. Here are some selected insights from industry analyst firms in recent years: Accenture: Accenture onboarded 150,000 staff members in the metaverse in 2022. KPMG: In 2022, KPMG invested $30 million in creating its own metaverse collaboration hub. Goldman Sachs: In early 2022, Goldman Sachs predicted the metaverse was an $8 trillion opportunity. Morgan Stanley: In mid-2022, Morgan Stanley predicted the metaverse was a $50 billion opportunity. McKinsey: McKinsey has a very positive outlook on the metaverse and has made this very apparent with all its messaging. It has even said that the metaverse is too big for organizations to ignore. PWC has created six steps for businesses starting to look at the metaverse. As more developments emerge from the metaverse ecosystem, forecasts for the opportunities arising from various metaverse platforms are very positive. Small and medium businesses A small business has the advantage of being able to rapidly deploy technology like the metaverse because they have fewer stakeholders and decision-makers to deal with. Small and medium businesses can use the metaverse to improve their brand images, facilitate hiring and training employees, and improve customer engagement. Other parts of this book describe how the metaverse can be used by specific industries, including health care, education, and entertainment. However, don’t make the mistake of thinking that you must use the metaverse simply because your competitors are using it. Instead, look at your overall business and ask if the metaverse can help you solve some of the problems or achieve some of the goals. The best way to do this is to hold a focused metaverse strategy session and invite the top decision makers and leaders from within the organization. Think about things a few years out, which could include sales, marketing, product launches, PR, communications, digital asset management, and other factors. You’ll be risking time, money, and other previous resources of your organization if you don’t take a strategic approach to implementing the metaverse. Large businesses or enterprises A large or enterprise-level business has hundreds of millions of dollars of revenue and may employ thousands of people. There are many opportunities for enterprise-level businesses to utilize the metaverse, including the following: As a tool for collaboration For design and product creation To engage with your customer base To increase your number of customers by creating and delivering new experiences As a channel to sell products Most large organizations have large budgets, so implementing the metaverse from an investment perspective can be faster. Implementation within larger enterprises is always slower overall, though, because big companies have more stakeholders and complexity. Deploying such complex technological solutions is time consuming and slow. New businesses Most of the world’s successful companies started small, and an entrepreneur somewhere laid the foundation. The metaverse is an interesting medium and can form the foundation for many future businesses. Expect “born in the metaverse” businesses to emerge soon. The process and strategy for having a business in the metaverse should be the same as it is for non-metaverse-based businesses. Offering value, filling gaps in the market, or serving an underserved audience are great ways to approach the metaverse. The more due diligence you do on the market size and market needs, and the more you match your skills and expertise with what customers need, the better your chance of success. Acknowledging the business risks Especially because the technology is still emerging, the metaverse presents some potential disadvantages for businesses seeking to integrate it into their business models. Here are some immediate challenges: The metaverse is a virtual medium and lacks human interaction. But as this new medium emerges and adoption rises, users will find ways to engage with each other (for example, through e-sports, hobbies, and other areas of the metaverse where experiential opportunities arise). A widespread (and perhaps justified) lack of trust exists regarding data privacy and cybersecurity. Securing the metaverse is a fast-growing opportunity for cybersecurity professionals. As cyber laws, regulations, and new ways of metaverse security emerge, these concerns will fade away. The technology is extremely new and there is a steep adoption curve. This steep adoption curve of the metaverse is a big challenge. It isn’t just displaying high-resolution virtual graphics that’s a requirement, but also enabling user privacy and safety, low-friction experiences, and a low cost of entry.With the advent of Web 3.0 technologies, customers can control data and be able to control which aspects of their data are seen by others — and that’s great news, but it’ll take at least a few years to a decade to become real. Building trust is key to creating communities in the metaverse and fostering digital commerce. The metaverse is not a solution for everyone and everything. It has limitations and may not be a good fit for all markets across all industries.

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What Is the Metaverse?

Article / Updated 02-21-2023

Listen to the article:Download audio The term metaverse refers to a general category of 3D worlds, mostly accessible with virtual reality (VR) headsets, that you visit and interact with in real time. Metaverse providers, such as Decentraland, Horizon Worlds, The Sandbox, and many others, have already created 3D worlds offering communities, entertainment, and a host of activities you can participate in with other users. In recent years, the metaverse has seen a high level of interest as cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are being used for added experience delivery on most platforms. How the metaverse started Much of how the metaverse works and what it feels like to use it is built on knowledge first gained by the gaming industry. Graphics technology, for example, affects how quickly images appear and move onscreen. The better your graphics card, the more colorful, detailed, and interactive the display can be without compromising a computer’s performance. Computer game creators knew that what worked to power a Windows dialog box could also be used to power more picturesque and interactive gameplay. So, they used the same hardware advancements that helped the Windows operating system run smoothly and in color to enrich the visual experience of the games they developed without overheating their players’ computers. Similarly, VR went mainstream in the 2010s. As VR headsets became more affordable and consumer-grade hardware began to make entry into the marketplace, gaming providers started designing games that would work with VR headsets and provide gamers with new experiences. Metaverse-based VR worlds have taken a new direction. New metaverse worlds and providers are emerging, however, focused not only on gaming but also on other activities. The metaverse has its roots in gaming, but its potential applications reach far beyond gaming, including in health care, entertainment, professional services, and a number of other industries and professions. What’s ahead for the metaverse? In terms of development, the metaverse today is where the Internet was in the early 1990s. The early Internet was shaped by new ideas, technologies, and ways of doing things. With the right investments, adoption, and usage, the Internet grew into the Internet we know today (for better or for worse, depending on who you ask!). Similarly, the metaverse today provides an interesting place for many activities, but many of them are still in the early days of development, such as gaming, art exhibitions, group activities, hobby clubs, and others that have just started to develop and gain traction. The investment and attention put into building the metaverse over the next five to ten years will determine what the metaverse ultimately becomes and the value it creates. The metaverse can help the real world by: Serving as an opportunity to create economic value Creating jobs and new professional opportunities Creating new experiences Connecting people and building communities Different uses of the metaverse What is the role of the metaverse in your personal life? Imagine you’re spending time with your friends and family, your loved ones, and you aren’t at work. Your role is different from when you’re at work. What role can the metaverse play in this case? In order to answer this question, you need to understand what you do in your personal life that’s different from what you do at work. Today, with the emergence of technologies, smartphones, tablets, and ubiquitous Internet connectivity, the gap between the workplace and personal lives has slightly diminished. Today, with remote work and work from home, boundaries between being at work and being at home are sometimes blurry. That said, you can use the metaverse as an avenue for learning, entertainment, and other aspects of life that have nothing or little to do with being at work. Here are some examples of how you may use the metaverse at home and in your personal life. Entertainment The metaverse is a conduit to a whole new world of entertainment. You can play online games, some of which are based on a network play and some in which you join a specific metaverse world and start engaging with others. You can also watch some of your favorite musicians and artists perform in the metaverse, attend concerts and performances, and attend major sports events. These avenues for entertainment are just the start. Education The metaverse is making learning more engaging. Maybe you have younger children who need to learn about a specific topic, or maybe you’d like to learn something new yourself. If so, get your VR glasses and join a learning experience curated by a museum in the metaverse, or visit a far-off land such as New Zealand, which is promoting itself in the metaverse. You can find many options for learning about new things in the metaverse, and as organizations, providers, and other entities enter the metaverse, learning will catch up quickly. From enabling remote learning to helping students experience learning in a 3D format, the future of education is likely going to be very experiential through the metaverse. Imagine being able to walk with virtual dinosaurs or fly with bees as they pollinate different flowers — everything is possible in VR! Socializing Fifty years ago, people met in social gatherings. In the 2000s, people met online in chat rooms. Now you can meet people in the metaverse when you engage in group activities, such as developing personal interests, hobbies, and professional networking. As with social media, you may find that some of your friends are exclusively metaverse friends, and others may become friends you communicate with through other means — text, email, phone, social media, and so on. You may even choose to meet in real life. Take precautions when taking your conversations in the metaverse into actual, physical life on planet Earth. Meet in a public places with other people around, in order to create a personal safety net. Work From small businesses and entrepreneurs to large enterprises, the metaverse can find its place in every nook and cranny of the work world and be a useful tool to perform a specific task. The metaverse can serve as a channel of engagement, to build a customer base, sell products, and even provide customer service. In the public sector, governments can use the metaverse to change government experience and reduce friction between citizens’ services and how governments deliver those services. This is already happening, and some private and public sector entities are jumping on board to create better governance and value for citizens. At a business level, a number of activities are emerging in the metaverse. Some examples include NFTs, the retail industry, emerging metaverse real estate, and perhaps the application of the metaverse for specific professionals. If you were around when the Internet started growing exponentially, around the year 2000, many new things were happening, including “Internet banking,” where you could actually log in to your bank and check your balances (amazing!). Today, accessing a bank online or with an app is a feature most consumers expect. There was also a time when early Internet users were introduced to the ability to order something online and get it delivered by mail. Believe it or not, most people hesitated to buy anything online, but some experimented with it. Today ecommerce is a multi-trillion-dollar industry, and most people order things with an app without giving it a second thought. It’s way too early for most people to even fathom how the metaverse will affect the workplace, but there are people who specialize in foresight and forecasting who can shed light on what the future may look like for work. Here are some ways the metaverse may be used for work: Customer service reps: New careers will emerge that will need people to do specific jobs in the metaverse. Most of these could be customer service, customer relations, and meeting people. Metaverse designers: Complex environments in the metaverse require a lot of brain work and creativity. Your skills will be needed if you can program, design, or imagine new worlds and ideas. Virtual offices: We’ve heard about virtual offices in the real world, but virtual offices in the metaverse will host specialists who are experts in things such as NFTs and metaverse design. Teachers and instructors: Are you a teacher or an instructor and do you want to build a following in the metaverse? The other avatars you see in the metaverse are people, too, and many of them may fall into your target audience. Future teachers will hold classes and teach new skills in the metaverse — everything from Spanish to how to create new 3D art. Meetings: Many companies have started using the metaverse on an experimental basis to see its suitability for collaboration. This means hosting some meetings and creating employee collaboration opportunities in the metaverse.

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Metaverse For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Cheat Sheet / Updated 02-06-2023

Have you heard about the metaverse? Do you want to check it out? Read on to find out about the platforms you can visit, headsets to make your experience a good one, crypto wallets and cryptocurrencies you can put to work in the metaverse, and how to stay safe while there.

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