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How emerging tech will influence freedom, industry, and money in the metaverse

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This article was contributed by Brad Yasar, founder and CEO of EQIFI.

Innovation related to the metaverse has brought with it some expected criticism and skepticism. Like any fast-growing, emerging technology, the parameters for its operation have yet to be fully established. This means, essentially, that those who hope to glean financial returns from interacting with the metaverse do not know what investment looks like. Is it VR headsets, digital land, or a pair of Gucci sneakers wearable only with AR? Some might argue that the metaverse is a dystopian fantasy conjured up by gaming fanatics and tech titans. Facebook’s transformation to a metaverse-centric social media company only heightens this dominant apprehension.

With Facebook’s Meta rebrand costing the company an estimated $60 million, it seems Mark Zuckerberg may be onto something. Given that Instagram boasts one billion monthly users, it would be wise to assume that the metaverse may impact our lives significantly in the near future, much like social media does. Much like the early days of social media, the metaverse’s impact is limited by its rate of progression. Soon, however, this progression will bring about a transformative era of industry, influenced by a variety of decentralized tools like DeFi, cryptocurrencies, NFTs, and Web3. Once the power of these technologies is fully realized, life as we know it will have changed forever.

What is a metaverse? 

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The word “metaverse” was coined in Snow Crash, a 1992 novel by Neal Stephenson. In his depiction, users could immerse themselves in a digital world through the use of headphones and specially designed glasses. This digital world created a space for users to engage with one another, exchange goods, and essentially live a double life through VR. Predictions about the metaverse of the 21st-century detail absolute similarities with Stephenson’s imagined reality. The main difference is that the many infrastructural shortcomings associated with the metaverse in the fictional world have been addressed by using blockchain technology as a means to engage and interact in this new virtual world.

Since Snow Crash’s release over 30 years ago, the largest technology providers in the world, like Facebook, have dominated the technology industry insurmountably. Google’s recent acquisition of Canadian company North to adopt a more modern approach to AR hardware and software could point towards the company’s plans for metaverse involvement. Similarly, Apple, the most valuable company in the world with a valuation of over $2.5 trillion, is producing a currently unconfirmed and unnamed headset designed to act as an entryway to the metaverse’s digital realm. Organizations such as these are not accustomed to discarding funds into projects without a future.

The advent of NFTs delivers a secure method of transferring digital assets from one party to another in a secure manner. Web3 delivers decentralized interaction and connectivity between separate entities, underpinning the decentralization of the metaverse. Cryptocurrencies and stablecoins provide the financial infrastructure befitting a decentralized marketplace. DeFi possesses the ability to bring fully realized financial decentralization to the process of transferring funds and assets in the metaverse. This would round up the network’s infrastructure, facilitating an expansive digital universe unhindered by centralized middlemen.

It is clear to see that the variety of businesses, individuals, and entities that could potentially operate in the metaverse is vast. The widespread use and acceptance of decentralization through the growth of crypto, NFTs, and DeFi point to a fully-realized future operating outside of the parameters of today’s established markets.

Evidently, therefore, the metaverse is not a sci-fi fantasy conjured up in a dystopian novel, but a more tangible and natural progression for the current structuring of the internet. The founding principles of the metaverse have already been introduced in many ways. Now its development centers on blockchain technology and DeFi to propel it from the conceptual stage towards the implementation phase. This development will allow us to firmly realize the true extent that the metaverse will impact our lives.

The gaming industry is one such sector that stands to benefit greatly from developments arising in the metaverse. Gaming skins, which are in-game avatar outfits, are expected to trade at a level of $40 billion every year. Eighty-one percent of players aware of these skins want to trade them for real-world money, according to a report from DMarket. Currently, there is no method of transferring skins across gaming universes or trading them for currency. In the metaverse, however, as every separate gaming universe is connected through a decentralized economy, this would be possible. The use of metaverse-based banks would also enable transactions like these.

Like in the gaming industry, many sectors and industries will benefit from metaverse-related funding and asset transfers. Much like the bankless barter system that precludes our current financial structure, the metaverse stands to reach maximum potential, alongside fully operational and functioning digital banks. This is now possible through the advent and expansion of decentralized finance (DeFi). As the current banking infrastructure separates further and further from cash and brick and mortar establishments, DeFi will be the financial model that facilitates financing across the metaverse.

To operate effectively in the metaverse, and offer a standard practice for the transfer of digital assets, banks will need to be decentralized. As continued innovations are made and more industries shift their operations to the metaverse, the likelihood of DeFi enabled banks becomes a compelling growth development. Centralized banking systems simply cannot operate on the metaverse, meaning the expansion and increased sophistication of industries like gaming will fuel the push towards DeFi enabled banking, which will underpin the financial structure of the metaverse.

This will open a multitude of benefits for industries, technologists, and digital enthusiasts as innovation is led through the metaverse. In gaming, for example, play to earn becomes a viable and attractive prospect for users and gaming companies alike. The introduction of the metaverse provides a concentrated arena where altcoins can be exchanged for playtime. NFTs can be used to exchange in-game assets, facilitating a whole new era of gaming, and operating efficiently with DeFi enabled banks. This again works to illustrate how blockchain-based emerging technologies will be used to facilitate user interactions across different industries.

Dystopia or utopia?

It is not just gaming and entertainment that stands to transform and expand with the onset of the metaverse. Synchrony, a fully functioning economy, and the interoperability of digital assets, information, and consumers means industries like supply chain management, property sales, and even office workflows stand to benefit from developments related to the metaverse. As a concept and technological innovation fueled by the decentralization of blockchain technology, the future is in the hands of these industries, without the stringent parameters of centralized control.

Given the issues that have arisen from unregulated innovations like social media, the likelihood of focused and coherent regulation influencing the future of the metaverse is likely. The OASIS Consortium, for example, pulls together leaders from industries like gaming, dating apps, and immersive tech platforms to address safety and privacy in Web3. Developments like these are favorable, given that the metaverse’s regulatory parameters are being developed by those invested in its growth and expansion in a positive light for the end-user.

It is clear that the correlating growth of cryptocurrency, NFTs, DeFi, VR, and AR will eventually collide to create the metaverse. Will this look exactly like the depiction in Snow Crash, a dystopian online universe where reality is no longer the central connector for civilization? Or, could the metaverse serve to disenfranchise the dominant financial structures of today’s economy, pulling power from the intermediaries that caused multiple financial crises? Nobody really knows. One thing however is certain: The metaverse is coming, and it will change how we look at money, entertainment, and society forever.

Brad Yasar is the founder and CEO of EQIFI.

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Identity in the metaverse: Creating a global identity system

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With the advent of the metaverse, the need for a global identity system has become apparent. There are many different ways to create an identity in the metaverse, but no single system is universally accepted. 

The challenge is usually two-fold: first, how to create an identity that is accepted by all the different platforms and services in the metaverse, and second, how to keep track of all the different identities a person may have.

There are many proposed solutions to these challenges, but no clear consensus has emerged. Some believe that a single, global identity system is the only way to ensure interoperability between different platforms and services. Others believe that multiple identities are necessary to allow people to maintain their privacy and security.

The debate is ongoing, but it is clear that the need for a global identity system is becoming more urgent as the metaverse continues to grow.

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In this article, we will explore the various options for creating a global identity system in the metaverse. We will discuss the pros and cons of each option, and try to identify the best solution for the future.

Option 1: A single global identity

The simplest solution to the problem of identity in the metaverse is to create a single, global identity system. This would be a centralized system that would be responsible for managing all identities in the metaverse. 

The advantages of this approach are obvious: It would be much easier to keep track of identities, and there would be no need to worry about different platforms and services accepting different identities. In addition, a centralized identity system would allow for better security and privacy controls, as well as the ability to track identity theft and fraud.

However, this approach also has several disadvantages. First, it would be very difficult to create a global identity system that is accepted by everyone. Also, a centralized system would be vulnerable to attack and could be used to track people’s movements and activities. Third, it would be difficult to protect the privacy of users in a centralized system.

Option 2: Multiple identities

Another solution to the problem of identity in the metaverse is to allow each person to have multiple identities. This would mean that each person could have one or more identities that they use for different purposes. 

One of the main advantages of this approach is that it would allow people to maintain their privacy and security. Each person could choose which identity to use for each situation, and they would not have to worry about their entire identity being exposed. In addition, this approach would be more resilient to attack, as it would be much harder to take down multiple identities than a single one.

The limitations of such an approach would be that it could be difficult to keep track of all the different identities, and there would be no guarantee that different platforms and services would accept all of them. In addition, multiple identities could lead to confusion and could make it more difficult for people to build trust with others.

Option 3: A decentralized identity system

A third solution to the problem of identity in the metaverse is to create a decentralized identity system. This would be an identity system that is not controlled by any one centralized authority but rather is distributed among many different nodes. 

This might seem like the ideal approach, since decentralization is a common theme in the metaverse. However, there are still some challenges that need to be overcome. For instance, it would need to be ensured that all the different nodes in the system are properly synchronized and that the system as a whole is secure. In addition, it might be difficult to get people to adopt such a system if they are used to the more traditional centralized approach.

One solution would be to get the nodes in the system to be run by different organizations. This would help to decentralize the system and make it more secure. Another advantage of this approach is that it would allow different organizations to offer their own identity services, which could be more tailored to their needs.

Another would be to incorporate an edge computing solution into the system. This would allow for more decentralized processing of data and could help to improve performance. It would also make the system more resilient to attack since there would be no centralized point of failure.

The best solution for the future of identity in the metaverse is likely to be a combination of these approaches. A centralized system might be necessary to provide a basic level of identity services, but it should be supplemented by a decentralized system that is more secure and resilient. Ultimately, the goal should be to create an identity system that is both easy to use and secure.

The ideal identity standards of the metaverse

Now that we have explored the various options for identity in the metaverse, we can start to identify the ideal standards that should be met by any future global identity system. 

It is no easy task to create a global identity system that meets all of the criteria, but it is important to strive for an ideal solution. After all, the metaverse is still in its early stages, and the decisions made now will have a lasting impact on its future. 

Current iterations of the metaverse have used very traditional approaches to identity, but it is time to start thinking outside the box. The ideal solution will be one that is secure, private, decentralized, and easy to use. It will be a solution that allows people to maintain their privacy while still being able to interact with others in the metaverse. 

Most importantly, it will be a solution that can be accepted and used by everyone. Only then can we hope to create a truly global identity system for the metaverse.

The bottom line on identity in the metaverse

The question of identity in the metaverse is a complex one, but it is an important issue that needs to be addressed. 

The challenges associated with creating an implementation that is secure, private and decentralized are significant, but they are not insurmountable. For one, it will be important to get buy-in from organizations that have a vested interest in the metaverse. These organizations can help to promote and support the adoption of identity standards. 

It is also important to keep in mind that the metaverse is still evolving, and the solution that is ideal today might not be ideal tomorrow. As such, it will be critical to have a flexible identity system that can adapt as the needs of the metaverse change. 

Ultimately, the goal should be to create an identity system that is both easy to use and secure. Only then can we hope to create a truly global identity system for the metaverse.

Daniel Saito is CEO and cofounder of StrongNode

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How to Eliminate Scheduling Inefficiencies in Your Business

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What do salons, consultancies, and home service providers all have in common? This question may seem like the prime setup for a joke, but there’s no punchline to look forward…

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Why You Should Start a Business Only While You Have a Job

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Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Many people that I meet tell me that they dream of starting their own . I always ask them, “Then why don’t you?” They typically respond by saying that they have so many financial and personal responsibilities, that they can’t just quit their job to start a company, etc. Then I tell them my story …



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