Metaverse Roadmap
Login About Contact
Roadmap 2016
A Project of: Accelerating Studies Foundation

Roadmap Inputs
The main body of the roadmap.

On this Page

IV. Problems and Indicators (9 pages)

17. Precompetitive Challenges
18. Competitive Challenges
19. Progress Indicators

V. Appendix

20. Glossary
21. References

Link directly to any input - Copy the link from the lowercase letter to the right of the input.

Back to Inputs Index

Inputs were solicited in four topic areas: I. Industry Conditions, II. Forecasts, III. Issues and Questions, and IV. Problems and Indicators. These were divided into nineteen categories, from History to Progress Indicators. Each was also considered in three subcategories: A. Technology and Science, B. Business and Economics, or C. Social, Legal and Other domains. This is an adaptation of the Foresight Framework Model of Dr. Peter Bishop, chair of the Futures Studies masters program at the University of Houston.

Foresight frameworks call forth a broad set of future-relevant information, but do not fully address any category. For each input, category and subcategory assignments are arbitrary and arguable. Some contradict each other due to controversy, uncertainty, and the breadth of community perspective. Some original quotes remain, but most have been edited and interpreted by ASF staff in subsequent research. We apologize for any mistakes or misrepresentations, and hope you enjoy this rich source of community insight relevant to the future of the 3D-enabled web.

Have additional entries or feedback?
Add to the WIKI
Those who do so can be publicly acknowledged at the Contributors and Reviewers section of this website.

17. Precompetitive Challenges. Opportunities for precompetitive industry, academic, nonprofit, or social collaborative R&D.

17A. Precompetitive Challenges - Technology and Science

• Object representation. There isn't yet a suite of universal metadata identifier protocols for physical objects (like ISBNs for books, etc.) that could be used to geographically locate and inventory things in the metaverse. As an overlay on the existing web, we need a geocoded and semantic web. GeoRSS is one format, allowing the encoding of location in RSS feeds, but we will need many others. We'll also need the geodata to be searchable, within a 3D map program like Google Earth [70]. At present, thre is very little metadata associated with informational objects. The Semantic Web vision is far from reality. But history has shown that if there is a data aggregator interface that offers consumer value, like Mosaic for the graphical web, iTunes for podcasts, or RSS aggregators built into tomorrow's browsers, people will add the appropriate metadata to their online information.
• Facilitating trust through 3D. How do we use emerging 3D web technologies to help the development of trust networks? 3D video is very helpful for establishing initial rapport in virtual teams, though it becomes less necessary going forward. Relationships in virtual social environments like Second Life can also allow the formation of trust with minimal time and money investment.
• We hope to see technology breakthroughs in automatic content and environment generation, in non-player character AI, and tools for user-generated content. A flood of new content will in turn create new opportunities for narrowcasting and content quality evaluation.
• The web emerged because of scientific collaboration needs, which are still pressing. It would be great to see at least part of the next level of metaverse infrastructure emerge out of government-funded scientific collaboration that required better 3D visualization. Academic centers like Internet2, working on advanced networks, might drive this, so might high end geographic information systems (GIS) for scientific research. At the same time, as the metaverse is even more a social space than it is a teaching or experiential learning space at present, virtual worlds that satisfy our socialization needs, eg., MySpace2, might be the major drivers in coming years.

17B. Precompetitive Challenges - Business and Economics

• Applying the "Turnpike Analogy" (online access as a precompetitive public good). When the US government purchased the privately-operated turnpikes between cities in the early 20th century, they greatly increased public mobility and spurred tremendous new economic efficiencies. They also freed up competition to move to other domains. Today developed countries face a similar issue with regard to digital traffic. Consumer access to bandwidth (channel capacity) for rich media has consistently been a bottleneck to robust virtual worlds and the participatory web. As the increasingly 3D-enabled web continues to increase in social and economic value, at some point high-capacity access becomes a public good. High end technologies like fiber optics promise to eliminate many bandwidth bottlenecks, but in the U.S., unlike other countries, there is little government leadership or subsidization of companies capable of delivering low cost public access. U.S. wireless and wired access lags behind both Asian and European markets as a result of our laissez-faire and special-interest driven policies. Telecom companies are among the largest contributors to U.S. politician's perpetual reelection campaigns. When will online access become a critical public good? What governmental role is waiting to emerge for public guarantee of high-end metaversal bandwidth in the U.S.? Can we look to smaller, more wired countries for a useful model?

• Creativity, lifelong learning habits, and self-directedness (individual motivation) may be the primary intellectual capital necessary to compete in a rapidly-changing service-based metaverse economy. Such skills are desperately needed by today's businesses. Unfortunately, they are actively discouraged in today’s authoritarian, lowest-common-denominator, test-driven school systems in the U.S. and other short-term oriented, special-interest driven democracies. This highlights a formidable education challenge: to reform or bypass our increasingly irrelevant educational infrastructures to prepare a workforce for tomorrow’s economy. There are limited models for this in Montessori and other self-directed learning approaches, but the passive, consumerist, media-saturated culture of the developed world fights against instilling creativity and self-empowerment from the earliest years. The rise of for-profit and nonprofit home schooling networks are one bright spot, and an effective way to immunize against a passive, selfish, and isolationist dominant culture, but few parents have the resources or resolve to participate in that option. As they improve in size and sophistication, online environments for alternative schooling systems hold forth hope for real alternatives.

• Addressing the digital skills divide. The gaming industry needs help addressing the increasing divide emerging between high end digital production, requiring a lot of specialized education and training, and the burgeoning number of low level jobs at the “edge of automation” (replacement by the system). The latter jobs don’t last long. Better academic programs, training youth in generalized digital learning and competitiveness skills, would help when they are shifted to a new job position every few years, or laid off due to advancing global competition.

17C. Precompetitive Challenges - Social, Legal and Other

Intellectual property law is presently insufficient to deal with many of the challenges of virtual content creation systems and privacy law with the flood of new data made available through the geospatial web. How do we best address this? Furthermore, out outdated patent and copyright systems are increasingly hindering innovation and is in need of reform. They favor big business, are highly bureaucratic, and lack specialist talent. Beth Noveck's Peer to Patent project (adding peer review to the application process) is just one of several promising ideas for improving the system.
• Regulating fantasy experiences and illegal activities in virtual worlds. Every baser fantasy of human beings, including many illegal in every civilized country, is a potential market for synthetic worlds willing and able to cater to our demand for detailed virtual wish fulfillment. Certainly Grand Theft Auto and the like are already examples of this (increasingly realistic social behavior that would be illegal in the physical world). The more realistic and intelligent these worlds become, the greater their capacity to both educate in and motivate antisocial behavior. To minimize abuse, new levels of legal accountability, insurance, regulation, and public transparency of game players must emerge. Most of this will be reactive, but some proactive. The 2002 U.S. Supreme Court decision striking down a 6-year old ban on virtual child pornography, because it violated freedom of speech, shows the deficiency of our legal framework at present. Without laws that explicitly address the issue of virtual environments as training grounds for illegal activity, we will remain unready for the future. Certainly the vast majority of us would not want online worlds where people can learn how to build improvised explosive devices or radio-controlled weaponry in their garage, how to effectively kidnap and hold for ransom, etc. Yet our virtual simulations get more able to simulate and teach such things every year. How do we better draw the line?
• Addressing new social problems occurring with the rise of "inner space" exploration. Youth of the early 20th century had to mostly go outside, into new physical environments to explore their world. They could explore the inner space world of book reading, but the discipline and education required were high, and reading lacks the critical social component. Then came television, which was low energy but still not social, and now we have interactive virtual worlds, allowing social exploration without the gaining of physical experience. In their “first generation” version, these technologies have contributed to a reduced connectedness with the outer world, a reduced awareness of global physical space, decreasing physical fitness and increasing obesity in the more developed countries. One can imagine upgrades to these technologies that will address these problems (mirror worlds, educational software, exergames (active video games), systems to monitor overuse) but we are at present seeing a number of increasing social problems with inner space exploration, in addition to their increasing benefits. The development and promotion of more outdoors programs like Outward Bound will be needed in our schools if we are to counter the decreasing physical awareness of modern youth.
• Need for more serious games in education and work. There’s a common belief that today’s youth demonstrate less long-range persistent attention at work than their parents did at their age. This may be true in physical space, but there is a case that their attention has simply shifted to digital environments. Today's youth tend to play digital games with long, complex missions, while adults tend to play simpler, shorter, casual online games without the same depth. There is also a significant contingent of adult complex gamers who may play today because they don’t have satisfying work environments. An R&D challenge for our generation is to provide enough realism, interactivity, and education in serious games so that experiences gained in the virtual realm have direct crossover to the physical. This may be less of a problem once we start collaborating preferentially in virtual spaces for work and education, but that may be decades away. In the meantime, we need more serious games of all types. This includes games that promote scientific literacy in the classroom, like Uncharted Depths, games that are counterparts to TV career dramas, like ER, CSI and Law & Order, and games that teach good social and leadership skills, like Virtual Leader. Integrating these into educational curricula is a major challenge.
• New social conventions and laws may be needed for augmented reality (AR) gamers. In coming years, kids playing AR games will be chased by virtual monsters (“ghosts”) around the city. Will the driver in an automobile be allowed to play such a game? What about the passenger, if she is instructing the driver where to drive? What happens when it is easy to play elaborate live versions of AR-enhanced Assassin/Killer, perhaps with reward money attached? Phil Torrone’s radio-controlled “Roomba Frogger” demo on a public street in Austin, TX at SXSW, was perhaps a harbinger. A significant portion of the blog commentary centered on the potential danger to motorists of this public stunt. Urban AR games will be quite fun for the players but we'll need a new social contract for their use.
• Legally balancing the needs of the individual and the collective in virtual space development. Just as with the physical world, as citizens and consumers we need a balance between the freedom of creating our own unique online spaces and behaviors, and the responsibilities living in a common virtual social environment with rules to guide us. Technology is not neutral. It’s built by people with agendas and assumptions, and we need those to be not only empowering, but as transparent and accountable as possible. We need to ensure that individualist values of freedom, creativity, and self-actualization are well balanced with collectivist values, including fair laws and interdependent social contracts in our virtual worlds.

18. Competitive Challenges. 3D web research and developments that will likely be achieved in a proprietary, competitive manner.

18A. Competitive Challenges - Technology and Science

• We need to make our 3D worlds map to physical space and available wirelessly everywhere users go. The perceived pervasiveness and usefulness of virtual world access will be the key factor in their mass adoption. Unlike early adopters, the early and late majority of users may be willing to depend on virtual space and integrate it into their lives only to the extent they find them useful in physical space and can reliably and cheaply access them whenever they imagine it might be valuable. Garmin's Nuvi (2006), a portable 2D GPS navigator, is a big step closer to the device we need. Picture a Sony PSP-type device that has all the functionality of the Nuvi plus a 3D map of areas of greatest interest in the city, broadband cellular internet access to the web, the current GPS coordinates and avatars of all your friends who are in "public mode", location-based advertisements for events occuring that night, and the ability to have 3D avatar or video teleconferences with everyone on your buddy list. This would be an indispensable device for 21st century youth.

• We need an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) Web, and unobtrusive wearable input, output, and processing devices to connect us to it. That will require more miniaturization, better batteries, and unobtrusive, intelligent interfaces, like voice. Reliable user-specific voice recognition will help, as will advances in natural language processing. It's quite possible today for earpieces and neck jewelry to tell, by detecting vibrations in the user's voicebox, whether a voice command came from the user or from others in the room. Just as we today have a web for handheld screens, we need an IVR web that can respond to the user's query with 1D (text), 2D (image), or 3D (moving image with depth) visual or verbal information, relayed unobtrusively to glasses or earpiece. Future voice sites could be built out, wiki style, for a wide range of uses. Consider how empowering it will be to be able to ask the web "who?, what?, when?, where?, and how?" questions, during conversation. Businesses like 1-800-FREE-411, which are advertising driven and at least 90% NLP automated, are excellent early examples of the promise of voice based query systems that are already empowering mobile device users tired of spending $1.50-$3.50 for directory assistance.

VR nausea and headaches remain a problem in immersive virtual world environments. High-resolution augmented reality may also lead to stress. If there is discrepancy or lag between one's virtual sight and physical balance in the user’s vestibulo-ocular system, cognitive and physiological stress and nausea occurs. OTC anti-motion sickness drugs (meclizine, hyoscine hydrobromide, etc.) will eliminate this effect, but at unknown health risk if used frequently. Even with conventional fixed screen simulators, headaches are common with extended play (e.g., more than a half hour in a first person shooter). Screen flicker is headache-inducing problem that can be solved with high-end screens, but rapid screen transitions can cause a similar effect. Research has been done to minimize and monitor these effects but more will be needed. It is possible that both immersive VR and high-level AR will never gain traction until these problems are solved.

• Programming massively parallel graphics processing units (GPUs). Multicore PCs and console systems such as the Sony PS3’s Cell graphics processor with 8 GPU cores, will require new ways of programming to maximize the use of massively parallel processors. As Nick Porcino of LucasArts, states in ACM Queue 2(2), Apr 2004, “PC programmers today have to contend with the parallelism of the CPU and the graphics card, and console programmers have to contend with the parallelism of multiple CPUs and a graphics processor. The programmers of the very near future are going to have to deal with multiple homogeneous CPUs and a great many parallel graphics [processing] units. The current pipeline paradigms do not hold up well against that kind of architecture.” Hardware remains a competitive descriminator as long as it must undergo major changes going forward. There is evidence that Microsoft's more incremental parallel development, with XBox 360, combined with its stronger developmer support for the transition, may have been the wiser choice than the more disruptive and less supported parallelization strategy taken by Sony. Time will tell.
• Significantly more graphical object and world creation simplification needs to occur. Dassault's Cosmic Blobs 3D graphics software for children, Google's SketchUp, Will Wright's The Sims and Spore, and Will Harvey's There, and are all significant examples of simplification in 3D object creation. Flickr is a great 2D object manipulation system, which can be fed into 3D systems in coming years. With blogs, everyone can finally publish anything easily on the internet. But it took ten years for this promise to be delivered. How long will we have to wait for ubiquitous user-created 3D?
• Even as competitors continue to advance their own proprietary platforms, we must promote greater interoperability among 3D platforms, and better syndication of content between worlds. Industry promotion and trade associations can play a role in convincing companies that there are many positive-sum strategies for collaboration that will both increase the size of the market and benefit the individual company.

18B. Competitive Challenges - Business and Economics

• Improving virtual worlds adoption rates and network effects. The ancestors of today's instant messaging programs existed as early as the Unix-based "talk" programs on early 1970’s minicomputers (PDP-11). The program was technically simple, but there was no decentralized infrastructure, so there could be few network effects. Thus it took 20 years for the programs to catch on generally, as with ICQ among internet users in the mid-1990's. When will we see computer manufacturers brand their most graphically-accelerated computers as "metaverse ready," and ship them with leading VW's preinstalled, to drive consumer adoption? For all the new features we can expect in Windows Vista, including Flip 3D, a probably-little-used tool for stacking and rotating open windows in 3D, Vista's bundled games will be very modest. When will we see "plug and game" computers that come with all the leading online games preinstalled? Without the knowledge that network effects are easily obtained, virtual worlds adoption is likely to remain minor.
• How do we get to the “good enough” metaverse? Market driven bottom-up initiatives, proceeding by incremental development is usually the best model. We can expect an evolutionary, not revolutionary, series of new ideas, product improvements and new behavior patterns from academia, industry, and consumers. Learning from these experiments and not repeating past mistakes will be a challenge for all of us.
• 3D web interface simplification needs to occur. World of Warcraft’s interface is so simple you can learn it in a week. You can play Second Life for a year and still not totally understand their interface. Most of the creator-function complexity needs to be hidden, and the user-function simplicity brought to the front. There does a better job with UI, but they are missing the user-created content traction.
• How do you allow people to easily personalize their own 3D space? So far "3D" and "easy to use" have been incompatible. Even SketchUp isn't very easy to jump in to. MySpace hasn't graduated from rearranging blocks and tiles.

18C. Competitive Challenges - Social, Legal and Other

• Global computer helper (GCH) network development. As mentioned earlier (Trends, 8Bi), a major unmet challenge for leading computer solutions providers today (Dell, Microsoft, etc.) is to train networks of low-cost youth in developing nations (India, Latin America, etc.) to affordably provide high quality 24/7 computer support services (remote backup, security, optimization, program installation and configuration, troubleshooting, and help with productivity application selection and use) to all customers who wish to receive them, using remote assistance and remote control software over broadband networks. Turning today's timid, angry, and bewildered computer users in developed nations into confident users and experimenters with digital technologies will be a major impetus to development of online culture. Developing low cost and highly specialized online support networks will also greatly help the youth of developing nations, and help build the global virtual economy. Issues of liability, trust, accountability, and scale are barriers to entry, and it may require a startup with good funding and the willingness to take some risks for the first consumer affordable GCH service to emerge. With the advent of Windows Vista, which allows extensive remote access and virtualization, it is high time those tens of millions of users in developed nations who could afford to pay $30 a month for a full service contract for remote virtual support gained the ability to offload their digital housekeeping chores, and to receive realtime 24/7 help from trained specialists on any computer issue they have.
• Communication mode should follow social and individual need, rather than the inverse, which is too often the case. Our choice of mode and medium of interaction should reflect our needs of the moment. But in today's companies employees and cutomers too often must conform to a subset of modes and interfaces (all must use MS Outlook, for example, are not allowed to use IM, etc.), or are forced to learn new interfaces when they finally get comfortable and efficient with the old. The need of the hardware makers to make money on upgrades is often more important than need of the IT user to maintain their productive equilibrium.

• It is very likely that most of our virtual environments will continue be commercially created for the forseeable future. As a result, most of the restraint needed to ensure that the 3D web improves rather than destabilizes society falls not on government, but on corporations and the individuals who operate them. Modern business must balance (consciously or unconsciously) short-term and long-term strategies, and involves triple bottom line (social, environmental, and financial) outcomes. The impact of corporate action is increasingly evident in our data-rich, measurement-centric world. It is incumbent on corporations, as the most powerful institutional actors today, to consider their social effect, and it is incumbent on society to aggressively expose examples of poor leadership and management. Corporations have a duty to convince the customer that their products and services are net social goods, relative to the available alternatives. Individual consumers and social institutions have a duty to fully assess the alternatives, and to make the best, not the most convenient choice, in the competitive environment.


19. Progress Indicators. Key quantitative and qualitative factors to monitor in service to healthy, progressive metaverse development.

19A. Progress Indicators - Technology and Science

• 3D collaboration and management tools, groupware, product lifecycle management
• 3D design and animation tools, CAD, avatars
• 3D manufacturing, CAM, fabrication
• 3D operating systems and application spaces
• 3G and 4G networks, Internet2
• Artificial life, evolutionary computing
• Conversational interface, NLP, voice rec, translation, text-to-speech
• Databases, semantic web, data mining
• Display devices, HD, OLED
• Geospatial web, GIS, augmented reality
• Industrial and process automation, robotics
• IP television, VOD, PVRs, home media centers, video game consoles
• Interoperability, standards
• Open source, P2P
• Molecular modeling, drug design
• Security, secure digital identity, micropayments
• Semiconductors, memory
• Sensor networks, transparency, RFID, EPC
• Synthetic worlds, video games, MMOGs
• Virtual reality, haptics
• VoIP telephony, video conferencing
• Wearable, Wireless

19B. Progress Indicators - Business and Economics

• Accounting (financial and cost), finance (public, private, micro)
• Adoption curves, commoditization thresholds
• Business automation, supply chain mgmt, ERP, SFA,CRM, e-Commerce
• Economic forecasts and indicators
• Game design
• Globalization, outsourcing, insourcing, HR strategy
• Learning/experience curves, market growth curves
• Management strategy, business models
• Marketing (personalized and mass), advertisinganalytics, SEO
• Organizational learning and innovation

19C. Progress Indicators - Social, Legal and Other

• Demographics, immigration
• Developmental convergences (positive and negative)
• DRM and patent law
• Failure scenarios, risk management
• Game culture
• Government regulation, taxation, subsidy, policy
• IPTV and telecommunications regulation
• Polling, group democracy
• Social networks, reputation systems, online community
• Social preferences, culture, fashion
• Tech support networks, education
• Tipping, inflection, and saturation points
• User created content, profiles, metatagging, collaboration strategy

20. Glossary. Some proposed definitions for words relevant to the emerging 3D-enabled participatory web.

Augmented Reality (Mixed Reality)
• A hybrid structure in which virtual elements are overlaid on our visual/audio/haptic sense of the physical world to augment information flow. Most typically, still or moving images are overlaid over a live background on a see-through display and matched to our dynamic point of view. (Def: Avi Bar-Ze'ev, Brownian Emotion).
• A measure of the degree to which information surrounds and impacts our senses; the extent to which our "external" sensory inputs are occupied with a given task vs. any distractions. (Def: Avi Bar-Ze'ev).
• The degree to which a person can make choices within an environment. These choices, when present, are based on the rules and behaviors of the environment and should ideally mesh with our desires/intentions/expectations. (Def: Avi Bar-Ze'ev).
• A digitally stored and electronically accessible record of various aspects of the experience history (GPS, time, and audio, visual, etc.) of physical objects (an object lifelog; Bruce Sterling's "spimes"), or of human users (a user lifelog).
• The convergence of 1) virtually enhanced physical reality and 2) physically persistent virtual space. It is a fusion of both, while allowing users to experience it as either.
• A shared virtual social space with 3D capacity, but which in many instances does not represent to the user as 3D. It is not "the 3D web," but rather "the 3D enhanced web." The former term is a common oversimplification that communicates a mistaken assumption that the metaverse will be all 3D, or even "3D most of the time, to most users." This is unlikely to be true. Human factors research would argue that our most efficient and valuable virtual interfaces for many types of communication, navigation, and cognition will remain 1D and 2D abstractions of our 3D world. For example, using a row of file cabinets in virtual 3D is for many a reduction of efficiency versus a navigating a 2D electronic space. People are drawn to many 2D games, like Tetris or Puzzle Pirates. Not just for nostalgia, but because the simplicity is elegant, focusing, and efficient. 2D online collaboration environments, like WebEx, may continue to be more efficient than anything we can create in 3D, for many uses. 3D videoconferencing, which is easily available in many work environments, is used today only for special occasions, such as initial meetings. It would be too cognitively distracting and disruptive to have a 3D remote connection on all the time, unless constant visual collaboration were necessary. In most cases we will probably want to keep metaversal 3D hidden but quckly and intelligently available. We’ll use it only if it adds value and doesn’t tax our mental of physical computing resources. As a historical note, physical computing resource load was a primary reason that VRML, a 1990’s 3D web protocol, was not able to scale beyond a small number of early adopters.
• Our collective online shared space. Sharability and the participatory web are even more fundamental attributes than dimensionality. All shared interaction-based online social environments are elements of the metaverse, whether a “1D” text MUD, a 2D chat room, a 3D persistent world, or multi-D collaboration interface. Collaborative filtering, social search, and other tools to develop community voice are early attempts at creating and mining shared experience on the web, and are new metaversal attributes that are as important as its emerging visual dimensions (virtual worlds, videoconferencing, internet video, etc.).

• A virtually-enabled physical world. People often think of Stephenson’s metaverse as an “other” place, but for many purposes the best model for the metaverse of 2016 may be augmented reality – an information-drenched physical environment where the 3D web is just one application, run in special circumstances. In a world with advanced 3D browser capabilities we will have our chat, our email, our 2D browsers, etc. Voice will be used for many basic queries, but text, even IM text, is private and unobtrusive, so it will not disappear in tomorrow's metaverse. (Def: Mike Liebhold, Institute for the Future).

• An electronic representation of a real world environment, populated by real people and constructed programs (known as bots). Within such an environment it is possible not only to interact with the scenery as you would in the physical world, it is also possible to interact with other system users in 3D real time (Def: William G. Burns III)
Mirror World
• A literal representation of the real world in digital form. It attempts to map (or mirror) real-world structures, like geography, or the stock market, in 2D or 3D form. GIS systems are often 2D mirror worlds. Google Earth is an example of a 3D mirror world. (Def: Avi Bar-Ze'ev)
Physical Hyperlink

• A machine readable identifier (barcode, image, sound, fingerprint, transponder, RFID tag) that can be resolved by a cellphone, PDA or other wireless device, and which provides a direct internet connection for data after prompting by the physical object. A major interface for augmented reality.

• A measure of the degree to which we feel we are in or part of an environment; the extent to which our "internal" cognitive systems are occupied with a given task vs. other thoughts. (Def: Avi Bar-Ze'ev).
• The degree to which a person can successfully alter a virtual environment, through interactive means, to reflect their desires/intentions/expectations. (Def: Avi Bar-Ze'ev).
Symbiosis/ Reciprocity/ Resonance
• The degree to which an individual and their virtual environment mutually affect each other and build on each other’s responses in a positive sum way. (Def: Avi Bar-Ze'ev).
• An avatar and user profile capable of traveling between different but interoperable 3D virtual spaces. Traveling avatar. (Def: Katrina Glerum).
Virtual/ Alternate Reality
• An attempt to use digital media (visual, audio, tactile) to portray a computer-mediated virtual world in a way that best fits our natural modes of sensing and communication. (Def: Avi Bar-Ze'ev).


21. References. Metaverse-relevant readings cited in the inputs. See also Useful Feeds.

[1] Synthetic Worlds: The Business and Culture of Online Games, Edward Castronova, 2005
[2] The Age of Spiritual Machines: When Computers Exceed Human Intelligence, Ray Kurzweil, 1999
[3] "Virtual Worlds: A First-Hand Account of Market and Society on the Cyberian Frontier," E. Castronova, CESifo Paper 618, Dec 2001
[4] When Things Start to Think, Neil Gershenfeld, 2000
[5] The World is Flat, Thomas Friedman, 2005
[6] "China Internet Sector," JP Morgan Research (Asia Pacific), May 2004.
[7] Entertainment Software Association.
[8] Gartner's Hype Cycle Model,
[9] "A Personal History of 3D Graphics (1996-2006)," Loyd Case,
[10] "Internet Growth Statistics,"
[11] "U.S. Online Retail Forecast, 2005 to 2010 ," Patti Freeman Evans, Jupiter Research, 2006. 1996 estimate by IDC.
[12] "Location-Based Simulation: Google Earth is the Foundation for the Next Advance in AEC Visualization,", April 2006
[13] "The New New Economy: Earning Real Money in the Virtual World," Knowledge@Wharton, Wharton School Publishing, Nov 2005.
[14] Home Broadband Adoption 2006, John Horrigan, Pew Internet Project, May 2006.
[15] "Ogre to Slay? Outsource it to Chinese ," David Barboza, New York Times, Dec 9, 2005
[16] "Time to Turn the MMO Inside Out?," Lisa Galarneau, Terra Nova, Jul 16, 2006
[17] "My Virtual Life," Robert Hof, BusinessWeek, May 2006
[18] Reinventing Schools: The Technology is Now! (website), National Academies, 2000
[19] Everything Bad is Good For You, Steven Johnson, 2006
[20] "How to make your own annotated multimedia Google map," Barb Dybwad, Engadget, Mar 2005.
[21] "The reality of simulated actors," Alvy Ray Smith, Communications of the ACM, V45 N7 (2002)
[22] "36 Human-Competitive Results Produced by Genetic Programming," John Koza,, Dec 2003
[23] "A Broadband Utopia," Steven Cherry, IEEE Spectrum, May 2006
[24] "Industry's First EV-DO Revision A Mobile Calls," MobileTechNews, Mar 2006
[25] "Verizon Wireless Takes Broadband Network to Next Level,", Jul 2006
[26] "Qualcomm Chip Set Could Triple Wireless Bandwidth," Ben Ames, IDG, Apr 2006
[27] "What is the perfect battery?," Isidor Buchmann, Cadex, 2001
[28] "Driving Toward an Electric Future," John Smart, 2006
[29] Eponymous Laws [of Technology Development and Systems Dynamics], Wayne Radinsky,
[30] The Transparent Society, David Brin, 1998
[31] Mirror Worlds, Or the Day Software Puts the Universe in a Shoebox, David Gelernter, 1993
[32] Ambient Findabilty, Peter Morville, 2005
[33] Geospatial Matters: Exploring the Implications of a Digital Earth, Daniel Sui and Matt Ball (Eds.), 2006
[34] Everyware: The Dawning Age of Ubiquitous Computing, Adam Greenfield, 2006
[35] The Singularity is Near, Ray Kurzweil, 2005
[36] "Back to the future of video compression," Touradj Ebrahimi, MPEG Workshop on Future Directions in Video Compression, Apr 2005
[37] "Our Revolution," Gordon E. Moore, Semiconductor Industry Association, 2000
[38] Digital Economy 2003, David Henry et. al., Economics and Statistics Admin., 2003. See Table 1.1 for IT's contribution to GDP, 1997-2003.
[39] "Global Video Game Market Set to Explode," Lora Kolodny, BusinessWeek, June 2006
[40] Alexa Web Search - Top 500 English-Language Websites. Retrieved Jul 2006.
[41] "2D is Better than 3D," KDE User Interface Guidlines, 2000
[42] "2D vs 3D, Implications on Spatial Memory," Monica Tavanti and Mats Lind, IEEE Symposium on Info Visualization 2001
[43] "How much of all Internet traffic is pornography?," Cecil Adams, The Straight Dope, Oct 2005
[44] "Seven Laws of Digital Identity," Kim Cameron, Identity Blog, 2005
[45] The Visual Display of Cognitive Information, Edward Tufte, 1992
[46] Moral Sentiments and Material Interests: The Foundations of Cooperation in Economic Life, Herbert Gintis, 2005. In "Towards the Unity of the Human Behavioral Sciences," Philosophy Politics, and Economics, 31:37-57, 2004, Gintis argues that "game theory is a universal language for the unification of the behavioral sciences." Increasingly informed by neuroeconomics, it may well become so in coming decades.
[47] "Name that metaverse," Daniel Terdiman, CNET, Oct 2005
[48] Three Billion New Capitalists: The Great Shift of Wealth and Power to the East, Clyde Prestowitz, 2006
[49] "What Netflix Could Teach Hollywood," David Leonhardt, New York Times, Jun 2006
[50] The Long Tail: Why The Future of Business is Selling Less of More, Chris Anderson, 2006
[51] Spying with Maps: Surveillance Technologies and the Future of Privacy, Mark Monmonier, 2004
[52] "Medical Healthcare Monitoring with Wearable and Implantable Sensors," Van Laerhoven et. al., 2004
[53] "Second Life Teaches Life Lessons," Daniel Terdiman, WiredNews, Apr 2005
[54] "No Pain, No Gain: In MXC, Japanese contestants prove humiliation is the ultimate goal," Theresa Duncan, Slate Jul 2004
[55] Play, Dreams, and Imitation in Childhood, Jean Piaget, 1962
[56] "Shutting Themselves In," Maggie Jones, New York Times, Jan 2006
[57] "Staying In and Tuning Out," Tim Larimer, Time Asia, Aug 2000
[58] Dropout Rates in the United States: 2002 and 2003, Jennifer Laird et. al., National Center for Education Statistics, June 2006
[59] "EBay execs say Skype growing fast," Bambi Francisco, MarketWatch, May 2006
[60] "Dial R for Radio on Your Cell," Olga Kharif, BusinessWeek, Jun 2005
[61] "E-Society: My World is Cyworld," Moon Ihlwan, BusinessWeek, Sep 2005
[62] "New Haptics Systems Challenge Stroke Patients to Grasp, Squeeze, Throw and Get Pushy," Diane Ainsworth, USC Viterbi, May 2005
[63] "Computer Scientists Develop Wireless Application for Ubiquitous Video," Doug Ramsey, UCSD Science & Engineering News, Jun 2005
[64] "Japan: A mobile network that keeps track of everything you do," Straits Times, Jul 2006
[65] "TeleNav GPS Navigator 4.0," Davis Janowski, PC Magazine, Mar 2006
[66] Why Max?: A Wireless Primer and Discussion on Wireless Reality, Jeffrey Belk, Qualcomm, Sep 2005
[67] "China launches new generation internet (CERNET2)," Liu Baijia, China Daily, Dec 2004
[68] “Well beyond streaming video: IPv6 and the next generation television,” Papagiannidis et. al., TF&SC v73n5, Jun 2006
[69] "Exercise, Lose Weight with 'Exergaming'," Star Lawrence, WebMD, Jan 2005
[70] "Mike Liebhold on building a tricorder - the geographic web," Ethan Zuckerman, May 2006
[71] "Gamers Flip Through Online Games," Kim Tae-jong, The Korea Times, Jul 2006
[72] "Artificial intelligence: past and future," Hugh McKellar, KMWorld, Apr 2003
[73] Shaping Things, Bruce Sterling, 2005
[74] Free Agent Nation, Daniel Pink, 2002
[75] Community Planning: An Introduction to the Comprehensive Plan, Eric Kelly, 1999
[76] "Human Performance Enhancement in 2032: A Scenario for Military Planners," John Smart, 2005
[77] "Spot On: Virtual Gaming's Elusive Exchange Rates," Aug 5, 2005, Daniel Terdiman,
[78] "Taxed Out!," by Eli Shayotovich, 2006
[79] Smart Mobs: The Next Social Revolution, Howard Rheingold, 2002
[80] "Broadband lag could hurt the U.S.," Rob Kelley, CNN, Jun 2005
[81] Shutting out the Sun: How Japan Created its Own Lost Generation, Michael Zielenziger, 2006
[82] "FCC Ignores Digital Divide While US Broadband Drops Worldwide,", Aug 2005
[83] The Wisdom of Crowds, James Surowiecki, 2004
[84] "New Year's 2016: I, Robot Investor," Tim Beyers and Paul Saffo,
[85] Virtualization of Society, Dmitri Ivanov, 2000. In Russian only. English abstract of Ivanov's argument can be found here.
[86] The Future of Freedom: Illiberal Democracy at Home and Abroad, Fareed Zakaria, 2003
[87] The 21st Century Meeting (High-End Videoconferencing), Roger O. Crockett, BusinessWeek, 26 Feb 2007.

Return to Inputs Index

Mistakes? Omissions? Participate in this collaborative foresight process by letting us know. We'll do our best to include your perspective, and will acknowledge you in the Metaverse Roadmap Community. Thank you!

All Rights Reserved.
Design by ExtremeCreative