By Shalmali Sirsi, 12 years, Legacy School
“The metaverse is here, and it’s not only transforming how we see the world but
how we participate in it.” ~ Satya Nadella
Do you know the average person’s typing speed? A meager 40-42 words per minute.
Do you know the average typing speed of 13-year-olds in 2021? Oddly specific, isn’t it…
Well, allow me to answer that. 60-64 words per minute. Straight up.
Why the sudden change you may ask? Enter: ‘The Metaverse’.
What is Metaverse?
If you’re one of those people who wants fancy definitions *sigh*, then here you go: The
metaverse (a portmanteau of “meta-” and “universe”) is a hypothesized iteration of the internet, supporting persistent online, 3-D, virtual environments through conventional personal computing, as well as virtual and augmented reality headsets.
Huh, a ‘what’ of the ‘what what’? Well, let’s just say that the Metaverse, to put it simply, is a space where humans can participate in a shared virtual universe. The term itself originated from the novel ‘Snow Crash’ by Neal Stephenson, where humans interact with each other as avatars in a 3D space. I wonder where fiction ends and reality begins!
The Metaverse allows us to experience new products at a brand outlet, test new medicines on human bodies using VR, and engage in immersive gameplay- basically do all the fricking things on your bucket list!
In classrooms, teachers and students can create unlimited experiences- like being shrunk to the size of a molecule to explore their own garden, sitting inside King Ramesses VI’s hearse, and staring at his unchanged expression since 1137 BCE. (shudder), traveling to the Late Jurrasic and soaring above the clouds on a giant pterodactyl’s wings maybe!
Oh! before I forget, it also invites teenagers- mostly 14-year-old male humanoids with a load of free time (insert eye-rolling) – to turn into non-compos mentis, Fortnite-loving, apocalyptic gaming freaks. While the more moderate amongst us, hang out with friends around a campfire and play Roblox or Minecraft for fun. And you know, the truth is, the list is too long to even say. My sincere apologies. Basically, it turns relationships- the “soft, mushy, gooey piece?”, into 0’s and 1’s.
Now, what do I think?
The Metaverse is the uniting of the virtual and physical space. It has the potential to overcome setbacks that we might face in real life. If the “Metaverse” is truly real, it might just be the breakthrough that’ll help future generations elevate themselves to the next level.
The same thing might make sunsets and holding hands seem inconsequential. We won’t have time for family dinners or a night out with friends. Dates might not exist anymore.
The Metaverse, as we know it, might make emotions and human connections… a thing of the past.