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Hi everyone, and welcome back to Geek Time. Hi, Brad.
I think what we're going to talk about is pretty much like the elephant in the room, or the elephant in the world. Everyone knows recently Facebook has changed their name to Meta. So let's talk about Meta or Metaverse, whatever that is.
So we have the Metaverse. It's kind of up in the air what exactly Facebook is going to be able to do with their Metaverse. They're kind of like the idea behind the Metaverse is an online virtual world that everyone can interact in.
中文叫元宇宙.There are so many social media articles about it because this is one of the News really.
You said it's an online version of the real world.
It can be. There's different ideas behind what the Metaverse will actually be like, because there can be more than one Metaverse. You could log into like one service’s Metaverse, and maybe just have like you could have like a 3D version of the real world, or you could have a totally different world.
I see, I remember when I was playing games, they were trying out some of the virtual reality things. There was a concept called multiverse, that's not the same thing, is it?
Multiverse can be... it's often used to talk about the different universes out there. So you could kind of consider to be something like the multiverse because it could be like an alternate reality, but like the actual multiverse is referring to a scientific concept that there are different universes out there that mirror ours, that are …
Oh, like alternative universe, 就是那种什么多元宇宙论或者多重宇宙论. But Metaverse is more like an online 3D version of the real world. It often is connected with things like VR or a mixed reality.
Because it's not just like an MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role-playing game) where you go onto your computer and you play a game and you control a character.
The whole idea of the Metaverse is you are that character. You have that 3D goggles, and so you're moving around inside the world; or you have some sort of augmented reality (AR) device that can help you interact with the world, whether it's through 3D goggles or like your phone as in like an augmented reality.
You can kind of think about it like, Pokemon Go (神奇宝贝) where there’s this world that overlays our world and you can go and you can have Pokemon battles or find Pokemon.
That is mixed reality because you have real scene, real life scene. But then you also have the sort of the virtual part of the game. But in order to be in this Metaverse, it sounds like we need to get plugged in.
There's different versions of it, like ways of people creating the Metaverse scene. You can have just a typical one where it's just there and you can look at it through your goggles, and you can move around within the Metaverse using your goggles, or you could actually have like the overlay of the real world, and wherever you're at, there's something connected to the Metaverse. And so you could use your phone to take pictures of art that you see out in the real world. It's not really there physically, but it is there like the digital world. And so when you have your phone at a particular point, you could like put your phone there and you could see that a piece of art on the wall or something like that.
所以既可以是虚拟现实, virtual reality, completely virtual, 又可以是mixed reality or augmented reality叫做混合现实或者增强现实, 就是和实景结合在一起.
I know it's a bit confusing to people who really don't know anything about this.
I'm sure this whole idea of Metaverse, now people started to talk about it, but I'm sure this idea has been in many sci-fi stories.
Yeah. It goes back 20, 30 years, like one, the first versions of the Metaverse that I saw was in a book called Snow Crash. In Snow Crash, they have this VR world where it's not a physically like jacked in world where you are like connecting yourself physically to this world.
Jacked in means you are connected using a machine.
Yeah. Like the Matrix or something like that. Where like, you actually have something connected into your body which kind of like moves your consciousness into this world. Whereas like Snow Crash, this is something more like what we're going to actually see today where you just use your VR goggles, and you use that your computer as a controller to move around within the world.
You have something that maps your body into the world, and they're actually looking at things where you put on like a pair of gloves. You can have some sort of tactile sensation where you can actually touch things. And the gloves will try to mimic the feeling and you can kind of feel something through the gloves.
So that really is on every dimension. 还会有触觉的.
But you said that the one that you watched, the Snow Crash, is not about people getting hooked, like jacked in, but there are also stories where people actually are jacked in.
Like with Neuromancer, even like it's very similar to the Matrix, where you jack yourself and you have like a port in your brain or connected to your brain where you actually plug a wire in, and you are connected into this world. And so you have a lot more control over your body because you're not using a computer as a controller, but you're using your mind to control your body in this world.
Neuromancer, I’ve heard of this. 中文叫《神经漫游者》.
I think this trilogy of books by William Gibson was often seen as the original cyberpunk. 就是赛博朋克, 现在很流行的一个说法.
Ok, but do you think that people want to be jacked in or they wanna be in this Metaverse? Because of some form of escapism that so that they can detach from the real world as we see it, and then want to take a different identity, for example.
I think when you just look at people who play like MMORPGs, you see people that are already doing that.
Role playing other characters.
Their character is…that person they're playing, is simply the person in the game. They go on to like Discord servers and talk with other people in the game. And their game is their life. That's it.
But with like this, this is gonna take it to the next level where they can actually see themselves when they're in the game, they're wearing the goggles, they'll be able to see their body as the character in the game.
They can create their own avatar. 就是自己的虚拟化身. So let's say where those plugged in into this Metaverse. And if I want to be a cat, Brad, when you use the goggles, you see me as a cat, not as a person. That's interesting. Definitely I would like to be a cat.
But apart from gaming, there's gotta be other uses. Imagine like in classrooms or in the office, then you can have a blend of like a mixed reality thing.
So like one thing you could do is like have the VR goggles on. When you have the VR goggles on, you could do one of two things. You could have like a map out lay of your room. And so when you're in the goggles, you see everything in your room is mapped into the game, or into the virtual world. So you actually just see your room just is in a online setting, and you could put any art on your walls or do anything like that.
Yeah. Or you could be in your office. And so what you're seeing is not actually your desk. It's actually like the desk at the office. So your workers could all be kind of like in this virtual office.
That would really freak me out because then that means I cannot be in my shorts and pajamas.
But, oh of cause people can see me still as in fully suited up.
Yeah. What you're wearing has no binding on what other people see, like they just to see what you present yourself as in the game. So you could be in the game wearing a suit but in your home just in your boxers.
Wow, that will definitely take work from home to the next level.
How would it change travel? I would imagine then you get to travel to a lot of places in the world without spending anything.
You don't have to get on an airplane and sit in an airplane for 20 hours or going from airport. You could actually kind of see what everything is around you. People could, like if you use google maps, for example, like if you have a VR rig, you can actually go into google maps with your VR and see like the google maps images with your VR. If you use google maps, it's almost like a Metaverse that we have right now in the real world.
But one thing because I am a keen traveler. When I travel, I want to experience not just see the sights. For example, I love food and I’m a foodie. I want to enjoy the local food. How can I do that? I won't be able to do that in Metaverse.
Here's something very interesting that they're working on right now. They have cooking robots. And right now, you can basically program your robot to cook dishes for you, and you can download like recipes. The recipe isn't just like what you need to cook, but the recipe is like a digital file that will tell the robot how to prepare dish. So you could have the food delivered to your house, but with this using like the virtual world, you could actually have like a chef from another country, jacked into your robot and prepare the dish because the robot would just do the movements that the chef does.
So I can sit in my home in Beijing, and then have the delicacies prepared by chef from Paris?
Right! The only issue is just getting the ingredients and so you might have to order ingredients from the other side of the world.
In the future if they can program cooking robots, they wouldn't, I don't think these kind of ingredients would be that much of an issue, actually. This is blowing my mind. I mean traveling is definitely going to be, I would just say, so much different compared to… now we can't really travel at all. It would really come in handy if we can at least travel in Metaverse.
Yeah. The nice thing is for a lot of these is you could have like sights, like uh, the Forbidden City and you could go into the Forbidden City and see like the Metaverse version of it without any other tourists there to get in your way. And you could have things like that, more like, you can pay la fee in that way, the Forbidden City can still make money of tourists, just virtual tourists, and that way people, that would entice them to actually go in and have them like map the place out.
Exactly. And like you said it can also mimic the tactile… like the feel of it. So maybe in the future you can actually go into this Metaverse version of the Forbidden City, touch everything, or maybe even have characters from the past. And you can actually see how, for example, the emperors and the empresses were living. That's definitely mind-blowing technology.
I think we're gonna wrap up the basic episode. In the advanced episode, we are going to get more into the use of Metaverse, for example, its issues and maybe the blend with the real world.
OK, on that note, anything you know about Metaverse, you want to share with us, any questions you would like to ask, share with us in the comment section. And thank you, Brad, for coming to the show.
No problem. Thanks everyone.
We’ll see you next time. Bye.