Metaverse and Virtual Reality

Originally an excerpt from Li Shihan’s “Metaverse New Economy”, reprinted by Chinese Translation Publishing House, please indicate the source

Searching for “Metaverse” in the portal website, you can see the definition as follows: “”Metaverse” is a compound word composed of “Meta” representing the virtual and abstract and “Universe” representing the real world. “At present, most of the media reporting on Metaverse related news are using this definition. However, to the general public, the metaverse is still a very unfamiliar concept.

Based on the extensive use of the aforementioned definitions, people have unconsciously formed the cognition that “Metaverse is virtual reality”. Although there is a certain truth, in a strict sense, “virtual reality” has other connotations and extensions: virtual reality is a way of human-computer interaction that uses specific environments and conditions created by electronic devices to allow users to have ” The sense of interaction with the actual surrounding environment. So virtual reality is a technology, just like in the movie “The Matrix”, people feel basically the same in the virtual world and the real world.

In this way, virtual reality is only a tributary of the Metaverse, not the Metaverse itself.

This is exactly why we have to use a broader connotation than the aforementioned definition to understand the Metaverse. First of all, “Meta” cannot be understood simply by “virtual”. “Meta” is derived from the prefix of the Greek “μετα” which means “between, after”. Therefore, “Meta” does not mean “virtual”, but should be understood as “higher”, “transcendence” and “superior”.

“Metacognition” (Metacognition) refers to “cognition of knowledge” and “thinking of thinking”, and it is the most comprehensive knowledge that exists on top of knowledge. “Metadata” is data used to describe other data, which can be said to be “structured data on data.” Therefore, if you think about the Metaverse from the original usage of “Yuan”, it can be said that the Metaverse is the “universe of the universe” and the “world view of the world view”, and it is a whole universe that exists in a higher concept that transcends the universe.

In my opinion, the precise definition of the Metaverse is not particularly important. The metaverse itself is not a concept derived from academic research, but a word coined by Neal Stephenson1 in his science fiction novel “Snow Crash” in 1992.Of course, this is not the first time technological terms have emerged from science fiction. The word “robot” was also first used by the Czech playwright Karel Čapek in the stage play “Rossum’s Universal Robots” in 1921.

The US Quartz website (Quartz) describes Metaverse as follows: “If the contemporary Internet experience is two-dimensional, that is, you can scroll through it on the screen, then Metaverse is three-dimensional. You will use a connected headset Or glasses “walking” in it. It is not clear that there will be one metaverse or multiple different metaverses (or whether there will be any metaverses), but the only constant seems to be that the metaverse is under the Internet. A generation of immersive versions is likely to be realized by virtual reality or augmented reality technology. Venture capitalist Matthew Ball’s article on the Metaverse influenced Mark Elliot Zuckerberg, Bao Er described the Metaverse as’the successor form of the mobile Internet’ and’a platform for the entire human being’s leisure, labor and survival’.”

Wikipedia introduces the Metaverse like this: “The Metaverse includes all virtual reality, augmented reality, and the combination of the Internet. It is a combination of enhanced physical reality and physical continuous virtual space, and a group virtual sharing is created. space.”

The “yuan” here can be understood as “beyond” (beyond). Simply defining the metauniverse as virtual reality actually reduces the connotation of the metauniverse. It is possible to accidentally miss the possibility, expansibility, and essential changes of the metauniverse.

If you imagine the Metaverse as a three-dimensional virtual reality, the space we live in can only be divided into “reality” and “virtual reality.” Even though there are universes of different dimensions, they just converge into unreal things. The distinction between “reality” and “virtual reality” has brought about the dichotomy of “reality and illusion”. This feeling makes it easier for us to confuse “reality” and “illusory”. Therefore, we must realize how important the standard of “reality” is.

If we understand “yuan” as the concept of “upper level,” then the reality of our existence can be regarded as one of infinite universes. In the digital world, multiple universes of the same level that are equal to reality can be established.There is a view that this kind of universe can contain its upper universe.

In this case, “reality” is only one of many universes. When other universes and “reality” are on an equal footing, it can be said to be a true Metaverse, where our lives and entertainment exist.

The “transcendental concept” that covers multiple universes including reality is the so-called Metaverse. We can create countless new universes, and these universes have become universes on the same level as the reality of our existence.From this point of view, “reality” is just one of the universes we can choose from.

In this way, the understanding of different concepts of the Metaverse will be greatly different. This will produce completely different judgments for us who are thinking about how to adapt to the Metaverse in the future and how to apply the Metaverse in our lives.

Zhuangzi is a representative of Taoism, and the story of “Zhuang Zhou’s Dream Butterfly” is very famous.”Zhuangzi·Qiwulun” wrote: “The former Zhuang Zhoumeng was Hu Die, lifelike Hu Die, self-evident and Zhiyi! I don’t know Zhou Ye. Suddenly aware of it, then I look like Zhou Ye. I don’t know Zhou’s dream is Hu Die and Hu Diezhi? Dreams are Zhou Yu? Zhou and Hu Die must be separated. This is called materialization. “Future, this story

Will become the theme of the Metaverse. “Am I in the Metaverse, or am I in reality me?” If we use a dichotomy to understand the Metaverse, it is very important to clarify which one is reality. In any case, “down to earth” is very important.Because virtual is only virtual, it does not participate in or interfere with reality.

If the Metaverse does not apply to the dichotomy concept of “reality and non-reality”, it is just a general term for many universes of the same level, then there is no need to distinguish. In the life of “Zhuang Zhou’s Dream Butterfly”, you only need to set the life you like more as the main scene and let yourself be the protagonist there. Therefore, reality is only one of many universes of his own choice.

There are some interesting topics worth discussing in this regard. There are many people who have heard of the concept of the Metaverse, but very few people can accurately answer what the Metaverse is. Some people think that Metaverse is a platform, just like the existence of “Google” (Google) and “Facebook” (Facebook). Compared with well-known concepts, Metaverse, like social network services or the Internet, is an abstract conceptual category that covers specific forms and multiple services, and belongs to the superstructure. Just as Facebook belongs to a social network service, individual Metaverses derived from games such as “Zepeto” (Roblox) and “Horizon” belong to certain macro-metauniverses. A kind of universe. So when predicting the Metaverse, we do not say that it will replace Facebook or the Internet itself.

It is difficult to achieve the situation that everyone enters a single Metaverse, unless, like the movie “The Matrix,” the machine shuts all humans into a Metaverse called “Earth” and forces it to operate.

The Metaverse can be broadly understood as a general term that refers to the coexistence of various universes including reality, but now we usually reduce its extension and mainly refer to a single Metaverse. For individual platforms such as “MyOTee” (MYOTee) and “Robless”, we can call it a Metaverse. Therefore, the Metaverse can be interpreted as a three-dimensional virtual reality space, and most people may also be accustomed to this understanding.

However, if we define it more rigorously, it can also be called “hyperspace”, “surreal” or “superworld”. The most appropriate definition of Metaverse may be “the hyperspace (real or world) where social, cultural, and economic activities are carried out”.

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