What is the Metaverse?

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  • The concept of a ‘Metaverse’ is frequently discussed in crypto circles, but what is it?
  • The Metaverse is the term given to the digital worlds many in the physical world choose to inhabit, with digital items bought in the physical world used within them
  • The Metaverse could see the first practical use of things like NFTs

Discussion of the ‘Metaverse’ has taken over the cryptocurrency and blockchain space in recent months, particularly with the rise in popularity of NFTs. Everywhere you look there is talk of how digital assets in their various forms are tailor made for the Metaverse, but little explanation of what it actually is. Luckily, FullyCrypto is here to provide the answer to the important question, just what the heck is the Metaverse?

Metaverse Concept Dates Back to 1992

In layman’s terms, the Metaverse is the concept of a shared virtual space where objects from the real world can be transposed into a digital format. It is the collective name for the spaces in which we can exist in a purely digital realm, interacting through avatars and experiencing similar practices in a digital world that we do in the physical, living out an entirely different life within the digital realm.

The concept of a Metaverse was first explored in Snow Crash, a 1992 science fiction novel by Neal Stephenson, which sees humans, as avatars, interacting with each other and software agents in a virtual space that uses the metaphor of the real world. The concept has become known more broadly through the term ‘cyberspace’, although ‘Metaverse’ has taken on popularity in recent years.

Digital Currencies and Assets Will Form the Backbone

The concept of a Metaverse can be seen in games such as Minecraft, Roblox, and Second Life, where players live a separate existence, using items bought for real money (or through in-game tokens) to enhance their experience of their worlds, often echoing the real world.
Platforms already exist where virtual land can be bought (Decentraland), and this is surely just the first of many such projects.

Cryptocurrencies themselves will inevitably form the bedrock of the financial ecosystems in these digital worlds, with the Metaverse also potentially ushering in the first practical usage of NFTs, allowing them to be represented as physical items within these worlds. For example, the buyer of Beeple’s $69 million NFT Everydays – The First 5000 Days art piece could hang the piece on the wall of their virtual home.

These real world versions of what has until now been a largely fictional notion have barely begun to scratch the surface of what is possible, and so we can look forward to huge strides being made in the development of the Metaverse, and its contents, in the coming years and decades.