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Metaverse: What is it and how to get in?

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metaverse

In 1982, director Steven Lisberger released Tron. The film follows the journey of a computer engineer, Kevin Flynn, as he enters a world that exists inside machines. That universe represented a new frontier between the real and digital worlds.

Recently, the term "metaverse" has been gaining prominence, both in conversations about technology and in speculation about the future of human interaction. Could it be that frontier that Tron, more than 40 years ago, tried to imagine? 

In this article, we'll explore what the metaverse is, how it works and what its potential is for transforming the way we live. 

What is a metaverse?

A metaverse is a fusion of three digital dimensions - virtual reality, augmented reality and the internet - creating a three-dimensional, immersive space. These dimensions come from other existing technologies, but we'll talk briefly about each one below.

Virtual reality

Virtual reality is a technology that creates immersive digital environments, simulating real-world sensory experiences. For example, roller coaster simulators, where you wear VR glasses to immerse yourself in the experience.  

Augmented reality

Augmented reality is a technology that combines virtual elements with the physical environment, making an overlay. You open your phone's camera and digital information merges in real time with reality, as in Pokémon Go, for example. 

Internet

And you know the internet. The global network of interconnected computers allows you to communicate with people from all over the world at any time or place.

Together, these three dimensions produce a virtual environment accessible via digital devices such as computers or cell phones. In it, people can interact with each other and with digital objects in a similar way to reality.

How can I enter a metaverse? 

Each metaverse is a space and has its own way of accessing it, so you need to know which one you want to enter and interact with. In this article we're going to mention three that have been the talk of the town recently. 

Decentraland

Decentraland is an open-source platform that runs on the Ethereum blockchain. On it, users can create their personalized avatars and walk around the grounds or participate in events - art, fashion and music - of famous brands. 

Hyperfy

It's also a metaverse that works through the Ethereum blockchain, but the big difference is that in Hyperfy you can build a complete experience virtually. It is also a metaverse that allows digital elements and products, such as art, to be sold. 

The Sandbox

In this metaverse, you can create 3D experiences. When you enter this space, you can buy a plot of land and start building whatever you want. A fun example is the Atari land, where players can reminisce about the console's classics in an immersive way. 

And why do we use a metaverse? 

As it is still a developing technology, we can expect more applications for the metaverse. However, it is already a tool used by users for everyday tasks. Let's look at four situations in which a metaverse has become a technological resource.

Entertainment

One of the most obvious applications of the metaverse is as a space for socializing and entertainment. Imagine: you can get together with friends in a virtual environment, without leaving your home. Whether it's to take part in live events or watch movies together in virtual theaters.

Education 

The metaverse also has the potential to optimize the way we learn. Educational institutions and companies, for example, create immersive virtual environments for practical simulations, interactive classes and training. 

For institutions with dispersed employees, one in each part of the world, the virtual environment is a practical solution.  

Work

Still on the subject of decentralized teams, with the increase in remote work the metaverse could become a key platform for collaboration between teams. 

Imagine taking part in work meetings in a virtual office, where you can interact with colleagues in a more natural way than in a traditional videoconference. It's already real.

Trade 

The metaverse offers opportunities for commerce and the virtual economy. Companies can create virtual stores where consumers can explore products in a three-dimensional environment before making a purchase. 

In addition, the metaverse can facilitate commercial transactions between people from all over the world, creating new business opportunities.

But are there risks in using the metaverse? 

Ethical discussions about the use of the metaverse have gained momentum recently. Issues related to user privacy and data security, such as the existence of spaces for cybercrime, are some of the most relevant points. 

To keep you up to date, we'll summarize the most important points. 

Security of users and their data

Meta - which owns Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp - has proposed the idea of a metaverse that collects and stores user data as a way of making the experience more personalized. 

However, Meta is a company that has experienced data leak scandals. How can we ensure that metaverse data is safe? This is a question that worries digital security experts all over the world.

Cybercrime

The metaverse also makes room for sexual harassment. In online games, for example, there are reports of children, teenagers and adults who have been victims of aggressive behavior and sexual harassment. The supposed anonymity and distance that technology creates between aggressor and victim encourages this online violence. 

So how do we prevent and punish sexual cybercrime? This is still an ongoing discussion and the metaverse has become a topic that deserves special attention. 

Conclusion

As you've read in this article, the metaverse has applications ranging from entertainment to education and remote working. 

These virtual spaces promise to transform the way we live, work and connect with each other. However, it is crucial to think about the development of the metaverse, ensuring that it is a safe and ethical space for all users.

Do you want to keep learning about new technologies and how they will change our future? Follow the weekly posts on the Pareto blog!

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