Written by Marc Demar
The other day someone asked me an interesting question: Whether I believe there will be a time where we will spend the majority of our waken time in virtual reality. He pictured a bleak scenario where people rarely leave their homes, have minimal interaction with others and instead live their lives hooked up to their VR devices, blocked from the outside world.
My usual response is: “The virtual world will ultimately consume more of our time and be more meaningful to us than the physical world.”
But before you picture a dystopian world where physical touch and feeling the summer breeze in your hair will be things of the past, I am not picturing us hidden in our homes, with headsets, totally oblivious to what happens around us.
Rather, I picture a multi-layered, hybrid reality where VR and AR technologies will allow us to smoothly blend physical and virtual experiences. In a way we already do that. You can go for a stroll in the woods and check the news on your mobile phone. It has become so natural that you don’t think about it anymore, but you mix the digital with the physical, which is pretty much equivalent to AR technology.
Eventually, the physical world, AR and VR will blend seamlessly. Indeed, AR/VR will become highly mobile and become a natural part of your life. In other words, you won’t be stuck in your home hooked up to cables and be deprived of all the beauties that physical reality has to offer.
Regarding the ‘more meaningful’ part, I am convinced that with the technology will come applications that we will consider useful, meaningful, essential, fun, unnecessary, addictive, harmful, hilarious. No different than the apps on your smartphone or the websites you visit.
I remember a time without mobile phones, without Internet. The fact you read this article so casually and in a moment click away and perhaps continue watching your favorite Netflix show, makes you forget that doing something like this was sheer unimaginable not so very long ago.
Forget about the dystopian futures pictured in the movies. The AR/VR revolution is underway, but it is nothing to be scared of.
Somnium Space, being at the absolute forefront when it comes to VR and the Metaverse, is a pleasant place to be and full of people I have started calling my friends. Some of them I met in person at Somnium Space Connect 2021 in Prague. It was as if we had known each other for years.
It was then it fully dawned upon me: The virtual and physical are blending perfectly.