Author: Hu Jie
Source: Wen Wei Po app
The meta universe is essentially a virtual space. We are no stranger to the virtual space constructed by computers, networks and algorithms. When the first electronic computer was born in 1946, virtual space appeared like a shadow. The emergence of the Internet at the turn of the century makes every ordinary person realize that virtual space is a vast world, where there is great potential.
With the development of virtual space today, it has some new characteristics, so that we hope to give it a new name: meta universe. This is like geologically naming the era of the great outbreak of species as the Cambrian. The word "meta universe" comes from the novel avalanche published by science fiction writer Neil Stephenson in 1992, in which there is a virtual space called "meta universe". The meta universe in the novel is born out of the real world, parallel to the real world, interacts with each other, and is always online.
The new era of virtual space named "meta universe" has two new features:
The first is the rapid progress of perception technology, and the second is the breakthrough of blockchain technology.
First look at the first feature. Perception technology transforms the computer-generated content into form, so that people's eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body and mind can be observed, so as to be received and understood by people. On the contrary, perception technology can also make people's will more easily transmitted to the computer through language, action, expression, idea and so on. The progress of perception technology is gradually bridging the perception gap between human beings, a carbon based organism, and the silicon-based world.
The second feature is more important and essential.The successful application of blockchain technology has changed the paradigm of economic activities in virtual space. Economic activities must be carried out based on rules recognized and observed by participants. In the traditional economic ecology, such rules need to be established and maintained by reputable institutions. However, with the support of blockchain technology, a group of ordinary people who don't know each other can find another way to build and manage a trusted account book based on the algorithm, so as to provide the underlying logical basis for asset ownership and asset transfer, and carry out all kinds of economic activities on this basis.
It can be predicted that the meta universe project will form two schools in the future. One school emphasizes the application of perceptual technology, and the other emphasizes the change of economic model. Schools that emphasize perceptual technology will sell cool special effects, and schools that emphasize the change of economic model will practice Web3 0, return the project benefits and governance rights to users to a greater extent. Generally speaking, a meta universe project will have both, but with some emphasis.
It should be noted that although the meta universe is a virtual space, it does not exist independently from the real world. As a link, man connects the meta universe and the real world. The main body of activities in the meta universe is virtual users, but each virtual user is associated with and controlled by a natural person or legal person in the real world, referred to as "real person".
In other words, the virtual user of the meta universe is the embodiment of a real person in the real world. Of course, a real person in the real world can have multiple avatars in the meta universe. It can be seen that the activities of virtual users in the meta universe are essentially the activities of real people in the real world. Therefore, the current mainstream view is that, in principle, the economic logic, ethical norms and legal system of real-world real people should be applicable to virtual users in the meta universe, that is, the real people behind virtual users.
How far is the prosperity of Yuan universe industry from us? Recall that 35 years ago, China's first e-mail "leaped over the great wall and went to the world". Today, 35 years later, the Internet world has been deeply integrated with our real world. Yuan universe, a new era of virtual space, from germination to prosperity, will evolve 10 times faster than the old world of the Internet. Therefore, we might as well say vividly that the meta universe industry will initially show its edge in three or four years.
Author: Hu Jie (Professor of Shanghai School of advanced finance, Shanghai Jiaotong University and executive member of blockchain Committee of China Computer Society)