It was an inevitable end for humanity to turn to digitalization through artificial intelligence and the Metaverse. So, will this decentralized system enable us to create a better world or will it lead our world into a dystopian nightmare?
Is there a longer process to begin this final change or has this process already begun?
As for the second question, yes, a foundation has already been laid for the process. Sensors from smartphones, social media, digital devices, and digital data-driven companies are creating a universe and new ways of thinking for humanity. These technologies and the so-called Fourth Industrial Revolution or the beginning of 4IR and the AI-driven society have changed a lot in the last 50 years. This change in question is quite large, and when we consider the changes in the history of humanity, it can be said that there is a global change that is more than the sum of it. And this is just the beginning of the current process!
A dream or thought put forward by the philosopher Robert Nozick in 1974 may have brought us to our present position. Nozick envisioned a hypothetical machine that could provide every taste and experience imaginable. The real question came after he thought about this idea. Nozick focused on the question of whether, given the choice, he would prefer the machine to reality. To the critical question, Nozick hypothesized that it would be better and truer to experience the ups and downs of the physical world we live in than to experience the artificial, never-ending heights of the simulated. After this assumption, he thought that many people would probably not prefer the machine.
Although Nozick came to this conclusion, much has changed in the span of 50 years or so. In 1990, a year after Tim Berners-Lee first conceptualized the World Wide Web, Steve Jobs famously called the personal computer the “bike for the mind” and helped start artificial races.
Stories will be recoded into human life
If Nozick had to choose between the physical finite and the virtual world powered by artificial intelligence today, and the digital infinity, which would many people choose now? The answer appears today in the order we have already chosen. We are now all digital magicians, scientists, and subjects in a massive virtual social experiment that engages and activates each other’s brains and bodies through multiple experiences and emotions that are completely indistinguishable from experiences in the “real” physical world. This is happening across Facebook, TikTok, YouTube, crypto-powered NFTs, Fortnite, Second Life, Decentraland, and countless other online and social media platforms, and it’s growing every day. The Metaverse represents the reality-augmented dream form and an escape ticket from this already troubled world. The rapid development of the technology we have is one of the biggest factors pushing humanity towards digitalization.
Metaverse platforms represent the culmination of the last 50 years of technology, while also leading humanity to new and bigger stories and completely unique ways of thinking and dreaming. This social-economic centralized and decentralized 4IR, Web3, Society 5.0 will open a new page in world history and open new ways of interaction and communication.
Stories have held a very important place in human history for several thousand years. From the beginning of history, stories and events have taught us to speak, read, write, absorb civil laws, create Magna Cartas and form our identities. Through them, we were able to learn a lot about language and psychology, about belonging, ownership, and the sense of right and wrong. In short, our stories from the past to the present are the biggest cornerstones we have in forming the identity of our lives and communities. Like Homer’s or Milton’s verses or the great discoveries humanity has made so far, the Metaverse will be of great importance in shaping the progress of today’s civilization.
Just as we have started to convey many things from various aspects of the “real world” to the digital twins of cities in the Metaverse, it will serve as an important bridge between the real and the virtual in the experiences experienced in the Metaverse. However, Metaverse also gives us a new chance to reshape the narratives we have from the real world. It raises various possibilities and tries to correct the alleged negative aspects of the internet.
Will the Metaverse Be Utopia or Dystopia?
Those who pioneered the Metaverse revolution were the first to bridge the physical and virtual experiences, and will undoubtedly continue these developments. From new cities and new properties made in the Metaverse to travel, art, and general experiences, all developments are geared towards expanding and empowering the community. These Web3, AI, blockchain, and other decentralized technologies being implemented will provide control over the people behind these platforms and work to ensure that similar mistakes are not made while building this foundation.
We recently started making the transition to Metaverse through a variety of interactive experiences that create unique moments across digital, social, and gaming platforms developed over the last 20 years. It is seen that these platforms commodify the individual by collecting their data and recording their activities, and individuals are also individualized in the Metaverse world through commodification. In addition to the fun aspects of individualization, there are also some negative aspects. In order for people not to be abused and to solve similar negative problems, artificial intelligence should create digital ethics and the risks inherent in increasing our perception of reality should be blocked.
In order to eliminate such negative causes and protect humanity, we need to be aware that we need to build the Metaverse, the AI platforms, in the best way, instead of a dystopian prison. With the right decisions and the elimination of negativities, Metaverse can turn into the key to a utopian universe.