History of the Metaverse
We are living in a world that is advancing daily. And as we all can attest; the world is evolving around the metaverse. People are now open to the idea of having a decentralized society where the users are given the freedom to make their own choices. Today, cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens are exchanged freely. Through metaverse, we can be able to connect with people from all over the world.
This brings us to the question: how did metaverse originate? Snow Crash and How It Influenced the Formation of the Metaverse – The word metaverse was first used in 1992 by Neil Stephenson in the sci-fi novel Snow Crash. This book later became an inspiration to the likes of Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg, and Sergey Brin in their effort to bring the virtual and physical worlds together.
Metaverse can also be traced to have been used in the 20th century where several discoveries were made. It is through metaverse discovery that the world wide web which plays an important role in today’s world was developed. We can socialize, do business with each other and not to mention learn from each other through this technology.
Originally, it was mostly used by game developers and internet companies for their enterprises. These enterprises created the framework of virtual worlds like Fortnite, There, and Facebook Horizon. Though they were at the top of their game at the time, they lacked interconnectivity. Currently, the technology surrounding the metaverse has changed and there is so much to be offered to players compared to when it began.
New players have been developed to match the corporate players that have dominated these games. Computer games were discovered a couple of decades ago. It is during this new millennium that games that allowed players to interact and play with each other were invented.
These games became more popular in no time. Companies like There, RuneScape, and Second Life became exceedingly popular in the Metaversal gaming world. Later, a series of other games that would be seen to gain more followers emerged. Unfortunately, with the upcoming of new games that have more cool features, companies like Roblox, Minecraft, Fortnite, and Animal Crossing: New Horizon are losing their popularity.
While these games offer social interaction, create businesses, and provide learning opportunities in the virtual world, they are still controlled by their developers. Meaning you cannot move from one game to another. For example, if you want to move from Animal Crossing to Fortnite then Zwift, it’s going to be impossible as developers of these games have their own rules barring players from this move.
From the success of these games, it is safe to say that metaverse has already taken the shape of its course. But how has this been achieved?
1998 A virtual world is developed where users can interact with each other, purchase and sell items using their currencies called ‘’bucks’’. 2001 On this year RuneScape released massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) 2003 Linden Lab Launches “second life” Its main aim is to create a platform where users can socialize and conduct business. 2006 Roblox, an online video game launch.
2011 There, comes back after it closed in 2010. 2012 RuneScape viewers reached $200 million. 2013 Oculus launches his prototype, Kickstarter Backer. 2014 A cycling game called immersive developed by Zwift is released. 2017 Fortnite Battle Royale, a free online game released by its developer Epic Games. 2018-2019 Fortnite earns over $9billion in revenue.
2019 It is estimated that Roblox users who create items for purchase by other users can earn as high as $110million 2020 Animal Crossing Launches New Horizon that enables players with flora, fauna to interact with each other in a virtual world. 2020 Viewers of ‘second life’ reach 1 million. 2021 Minecraft reaches 140million monthly users.
2021 The Republic of Korea announces that it will be launching a “National Metaverse Alliance” that will introduce a new platform of VR and AR. The novel ‘Snow Crash’ did not only introduce the universe to the metaverse, but it also left an impact on some of the best Silicon Valley pioneers such as Sergey Brin the cofounder of Google, Jeff Bezos the cofounder of Amazon, and Blue Origin founder.
The novel opened a door for new opportunities, these founders provided the environment for more companies to embrace metaverse. The significance of metaverse was seen in 2020 when the world was struck by Coronavirus where communication through the virtual world became the new normal.
2021 has seen significant growth in the usage of virtual reality as a means of communication. Companies like Zoom, Google, Microsoft, and other companies have seemingly seen an increase in their users since the pandemic. Since most of these platforms are still centralized, Microsoft is developing a platform where users will be able to interact virtually across devices (The Microsoft Mesh project).
Where the rights and ownership will still be under Microsoft. This raises an eyebrow as to whether these apps will ever achieve decentralization. But how did Snow Crash inspire the future of the metaverse? 2000 The Cofounder of google Sergey Brin during an interview with the Academy of Achievement explained how the novel inspired the making of his company.
2000 Jeff Bezos recruited the author of Snow Crash to be part of Blue Origin which is the suborbital spaceflight. 2001 Memex (Cronin Blaise) is introduced by Microsoft. 2014 Facebook scientist Dean Eckles explained that Snow Crash was a book he would recommend project managers of social media platforms to read. 2014 Facebook spends $ 2.3 billion in purchasing Oculus 2020 During this year, the number of google video participants increased to 100 million daily.
2021 There was an increase in users of google from 115 million daily users to 145 million users.
2021 Mesh was developed. This project was meant to link users across devices. 2021 Facebook announces to CNET that one of its main objectives was to attract as many people as possible who will experience virtual reality. Early signs of the decentralized era first appeared in the 2000s and 2010. Colored coins which were the signs of a metaverse world began to gain popularity.
The coins were used to create, purchase, and sell items that were unique to players. Although the colored coins could not be compared to other projects that were later developed, they opened the door to the world of the metaverse.
The rise of NFTs games saw the beginning of a new era of NFT art that led Cryptokitty to sell over $170,000 in 2018. The unification of both blockchain and metaverse created a platform in the online universe where users connected and interacted virtually.
How was this achieved? 2005 New servers were introduced by RuneScape which would see individuals manage their games as compared to the original version which was owned by Jagex. 2012 Yoni Assia first mentioned the colored coins. He explained that the coins brought a new world where users could buy and sell their items virtually.
2014 Counterparty introduced Bitcoin blockchain which allowed its users to trade currencies and items. 2017 Crypopunks creates 10,000 NFTs characters with each Cryptopunks having its unique features. 2017 Crypokitties is launched. This video game allows its users to collect, breed, and sell kittens. Surprisingly in 2018, a Crypokitty called Dragon sold at $172,000.
2021 Sotheby’s holds NFTs art show that replicates the London galleries in a Decentraland metaverse. 2021 The album ‘When You See Yourself’ is released. Becoming the first album as an NFT to be released. The origin of the metaverse dates to the 20th century.
After the release of the novel Snow Crash, founders of internet companies Amazon, Facebook and Google were influenced by the book and wanted to turn it into a reality so the competition to take the metaverse to the next level began. More platforms are being advanced to ensure all the user’s imaginative ideas are being met. Everyone is on the lookout to see what is next!