- Executives from ILM, Unity, Roblox and NVIDIA talk to The Economist about how the metaverse is shaping every aspect of businesses and social lives.
- Virtual production volumes allow for the capture of final VFX images in-camera, enabling quick turnaround times for television series.
- Gaming platform Roblox is enabling startup developers to create a business outside of the traditional giant gaming companies.
- The metaverse still lacks an agreed standard for connecting multiple virtual worlds, but Pixar’s open-source Universal Scene Description tool could provide a universal protocol.
Business leaders are being educated in the metaverse and told it could offer multi-trillion-dollar opportunities in the long term.
“From firefighting to filmmaking and manufacturing to medicine, virtual worlds have the potential to transform many aspects of daily life,” The Economist narrates in a new video, “How will businesses use the metaverse?”
The august financial publication has brought together a number of opinion formers to talk about the 3D internet evolution. Among them is Rob Bredow, chief creative officer at Industry Light & Magic (ILM), discussing virtual production [01:22].
The ability to generate realistic computer-generated worlds in real time is not only upending the finances of conventional production in Hollywood, but the graphics software behind it is the driving force of metaverse creation in every industry. Game engines can now create and apply a simulated world’s rules, logic and physics in real-time.
Read It on Amplify: A Brief Voyage Through the History of Virtual Production
Read It on Amplify: Virtual Production: A Primer
Rick Famuyiwa and Jon Favreau, both executive producers and directors on The Mandalorian, also share their insight [04:09].
“You can get in-camera finished VFX that can help us with the quick turnaround that television requires,” Favreau says.
We learn that about half of the shots produced on ILM’s volume stage go straight into the show, while half still need some refinement in post.
Metaverse sage Matthew Ball is on hand to describe what the metaverse actually is.
Read It on Amplify: Matthew Ball: Your Daily Life in the Metaverse
Read It on Amplify: Matthew Ball: Metaverse Expectations vs. Reality
“Most big tech leaders imagine it as a parallel plane of existence, a 3D virtual simulacrum of the Earth, but with many fictional elements allowing us to do the impossible,” Ball explains [02:30].
Gaming platform Roblox is highlighted for enabling startup developers to make a business outside of the traditional giant gaming companies. Tami Bhaumik, VP of marketing at Roblox, talks more about this during the video [09:51].
Three-quarters of American kids aged between nine and 12 use Roblox, as do half of 10-year-olds in Britain. With that kind of popularity, the platform has caught the attention of major global brands. “The metaverse has found its place in the cultural zeitgeist even if nobody knows what its final state will look like,” the narrator says.
NVIDIA’s Richard Kerris also explains digital twins [12:15] — a true-to-reality simulation of a physical environment. “The way to think of it is like the operating system for the metaverse,” he shares while explaining his company’s Omniverse digital twins developer platform.
There is a potential problem, though. As of yet, the metaverse lacks an agreed standard for connecting multiple virtual worlds — like the missing HTML protocol.
“When we think about the metaverse as a 3D elevation of the internet we require the same sorts of structures,” Ball says [14:33]. “New hierarchies that allow one virtual world to know that another exists to then communicate and securely and consistently share information but almost none of that exists today.”
The race is on to develop the metaverse’s equivalent of HTML.
Kerris comments how, “The thing that makes the metaverse so impactful for everyone is the seamless ability to go from virtual world to virtual world in much the same way today we go from web site to web site.”
The Economist shares that Pixar may have helped provide the answer in the open-source tool, Universal Scene Description (USD). “It remains to be seen whether USD will become the universal protocol of the metaverse.”
The video also looks at mixed reality wearables, including augmented reality headsets as used by the US military and supplied by Microsoft in a $22 billion deal [16:26]. Medical care is also shown to benefit from AR devices used in surgery, something that is rapidly becoming routine.
These new technologies are likely to unlock new human behaviors and consequently, to unlock new revenue — but no one really knows yet what these might be.
As the metaverse grows, so do challenges. Some similar to massive improvements in computer power. And yet, despite all of its potential, The Economist warns that the metaverse is likely to share the pitfalls of the real world.
The metaverse may be a wild frontier, but here at NAB Amplify we’ve got you covered! Hand-selected from our archives, here are some of the essential insights you’ll need to expand your knowledge base and confidently explore the new horizons ahead:
- The Metaverse Will Make $5 Trillion By 2030. That Sounds Awesome and… Wait, What Are We Talking About?
- Metaverse Expectations vs. Reality
- A Metacode of Conduct for the Metaverse
- Metaverse Interoperability: Utopian Dream, Privacy Nightmare
- Consumers Are Confused About the Metaverse, But Seriously, Can You Blame Them?