Blog #5 You, The Metaverse and a Full Days Work

Looking into the future. You, the Metaverse and a Full Days Work

If I called this Blog ‘You and a Full Days Work’, I bet you wouldn’t read it… right? Throw a lovely noun into the mix… ‘Metaverse’… and I appear to have your attention.

We have three questions to answer here. Firstly, (like me) you’ll be asking what on earth is the Metaverse anyway? Secondly, what has it got to do with me and work? Thirdly, how will all this tie in with AGS?

Let’s answer question one, what is the Metaverse?

This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-ND

WHAT IS THE METAVERSE?

According to Google (at the time of writing) there are roughly 120million search returns for ‘what is the metaverse’.

Anyway… back to the question, ‘what is the metaverse?’

The answer is, I don’t think anyone really knows. Answers to this question have taken me from the ridiculous to the sublime, but never to a clear, concise answer.

From my research, in the most basic terms I can make out that the Metaverse is more of a terminology than a thing in its own right.

THE WORD ‘METAVERSE’

The word ‘Metaverse’ refers to a digital environment in which you can interact with other humans as a character.

If you have kids the same age as mine, then the game Fortnite would be a popular example.

This Metaverse can be a game (as mentioned above) equally and more relevantly it can be a business tool.

This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA-NC

There are an increasing number of Metaverse providers that provide an alternative option for video conferencing or collaborative working. The interesting thing here, is that with in your Metaverse of choice, custom environments and experiences can be built.

METAVERSE LIMITATIONS

An interesting limitation to all this is compatibility. Much like a video game, there is very limited opportunity to take a digital asset from one Metaverse to another. In fact, there are possibly no opportunities to transfer, move or use assets across multiple Metaverse environments.

I will of course caveat Metaverse limitations with ‘at the time of writing’.

FASHIONABLE HEADWEAR

It’s often assumed, as I did, that to use your chosen Metaverse you must be versed in VR (Virtual Reality) or AR (Augmented Reality) and have the goggles, PC’s and other equipment to support that.

This is simply not true.

While, from an immersion standpoint, VR and AR equipment does indeed allow the user to experience their Metaverse to its fullest potential, it’s by no means a requirement. If you have a laptop and a camera (and your chosen Metaverse supports that… we’ll come onto this…) then generally you can take part.

Woah there cowboy… what do you mean about a Metaverse supporting equipment?

Glad you asked.

WHY DON’T YOU SUPPORT ME?

If, like me, you thought ‘I know what, I’ll go and buy a VR headset, login to the Metaverse and be one of the most up to date, cutting edge people I know! Well no… it’s not that simple.

Drawing another parallel to the gaming industry, my research has shown that each Metaverse appears to support differing equipment. Some support several makes and models of VR headsets, some have proprietary equipment. It really depends on the Metaverse environment you have chosen.

PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT

”Do your homework! Check what kit is compatible. I nearly shelled out the best part of £1k on equipment, it turns out, wouldn’t have been supported on my Metaverse platform of choice!”

WHAT WE KNOW NOW

Hopefully, you now know a little more about the Metaverse. Or rather, you know ‘the Metaverse’ isn’t a singular thing… in fact it isn’t a ‘the’ at all. Perhaps we should instead call it ‘A Metaverse’… on that note perhaps I should re-title this segment ‘what is A metaverse’.

This is all well and good, but what has it got to do with me and work?

YOU AND A FULL DAY’S WORK.

This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA-NC

Unless a piece of technology fundamentally changes something in the very near future, it cannot be denied that the Metaverse is here to stay and will play a part in your life (if it doesn’t already).

With organisations always looking to have an edge over its competitors, the use of a Metaverse environment will almost certainly extend into the workplace.

COVID AND OUR TECHNOLOGICAL HABITS

If the events surrounding the Covid pandemic have taught us anything, its how to embrace technology and how to interact with each other on an increasingly isolated and virtual basis. Like it or not, this ‘new normal’ appears to be here to stay.

For the workplace, a Metaverse environment can provide an edge. It provides a virtual collaborative environment from within which users (ie: you) can interact.

At its most basic, perhaps it’s a fancy, fun and interactive way to play games and hold video calls.

At its most advanced, users can interact with complex products and ideas, in some cases literally get inside them and solve problems in ways we previously thought impossible. You can do all this from the comfort of your own home.

Ever thought about doing your desk job without a keyboard and screens? Ever considered handling and building a product in a virtual physical environment alongside a colleague on the other side of the world?

Food for thought:

If this ‘Metaverse’ thing is a virtual representation of a physical location or building but ‘anything is possible’ – then could it be a tool for designing buildings and infrastructure?

If the implementation of AGS360 in the metaverse is a digital playground, we could have people ‘spec’ up their dream building with all the ideal equipment, systems and services the same way dreamers spec up a car on the Ferrari website?

Could AGS potentially collaborate with architects and engineers to get an AGS-approved building that meets certain compliance standards during the design stage. 

AGS360 would provide assurance of maintenance and upkeep requirements.  It could be a really good indication of what that would cost the FM budget year on year?

This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA

COST AND ENVIRONMENTAL BENEFITS

The cost saving implications are real too. By its very nature, the Metaverse does not care about geographic boundaries or travel distances. Imagine a global company holding its grand annual staff meeting, without any of the participants ever having to get on a plane and travel to a venue. The simplifying of logistics and the reduced costs associated with such an event. Not to mention the environmental cost benefits through the reduction of air and land travel.

LEVERAGE FOR ALL

From the admin assistant to the engineer, the apprentice to the master, almost anyone can leverage the power of ‘the Metaverse’ and it could have far reaching, hopefully positive effects.

The possibilities of the Metaverse’s application are limited only by human desire and imagination.

WHAT HAS THIS GOT TO DO WITH AGS?

Like any company, AGS is no exception, we must look at the future. Where will we be in X years’ time, what technologies might we be using and so on.

The very reason for this blog is the result of asking the question ‘What technologies will we be using in the near future?’.

‘IOT’, yes were covering that with our sensors and data logging etc. ‘AI’, yeah, were getting there with our thoughts on how we’ll start to cover that (Power BI being the start point)… ok cool.

HOW IS THIS RELEVANT?

So… the Metaverse, how might that be relevant to AGS? Is it relevant?

Will use of the metaverse become a standard business tool? Everything tells us, yes its quite likely it will. So, AGS must find its place and make itself relevant to the coming Meta generation of businesses.

How on earth are you going to do that? In short… no idea, however, we do have some thoughts.

Firstly, with the current limitation of sharing ‘assets’ across various Metaverse platforms being a problem, it is entirely foreseeable that organisations’ will build lists of digital assets that will need to be tracked and replicated across the various platforms.

"AN INDUSTRY EXPERT SPEAKS"

When asking an industry expert for their comments, they made an interesting point that we thought was worth adding to this blog.

Do you agree?… 

“it is entirely foreseeable that organisations’ will build lists of digital assets that will need to be tracked and replicated across the various platforms” – I totally get your point but I feel that the idea of a singular ‘THE METAVERSE’ isn’t about tracking and replicating, but recognizing the asset, verifying its authenticity (NFT)

and representing it in any-verse. This could be viewed similarly to AGS360 being your website no matter what device, network, screen size, web speed you view it on, although it might look different and take slightly different forms – the website is the website’’

A METAVERSE HUB

Why not use AGS360? In fact, why not use AGS360 as the hub for transitioning between Metaverse environments. Why not store details, locations, data, ownership info etc. within AGS.

In this context data is an asset. AGS handles data and assets. AGS is a web application, most VR headsets support some form of internet browsing.

Oooh… imagine AGS360 in VR! Now wouldn’t that be something!!

DEVELOPING THOUGHTS

Our thoughts on the Metaverse are young and not yet fully formed, but, we are thinking about it.

Will it allow AGS to become an essential component of any business looking to use the Metaverse? We certainly hope so. 

All we can do is strive to find out the answers to the questions.

CONCLUSION

Does the Metaverse affect you now? Maybe. Will the Metaverse be something you’ll need to get used to at work? Quite likely. Should you be taking an interest? Almost certainly.

Do you know what the Metaverse is? At the moment it seems only you can draw a conclusion.

What are your thoughts on the subject of the Metaverse in the workplace? Send us an email, we’d love to hear your thoughts.

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