The Universal backlot: The tools of the metaverse | Jon Peddie

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Jon Peddie recently hosted a talk at the GamesBeat Summit 2023 event about Universal Backlots (a metaphor borrowed from a movie about tools to create the metaverse).

Founder of Jon Peddie Research, Peddie has specialized in computer graphics analysis and advice for decades and is the author of a series of three books on the history of GPUs (graphics processing units).

He started by defining the Metaverse as “whatever you want”. Omid Rahmat helped build the deck, but it didn’t get talked about.

“And the metaverse never works, so trying to define and label something as a single entity is no joke,” he said. “First of all, in a perfect metaverse, there is only one metaphor, and whoever has space there can roam freely, exchange virtual goods, manage transactions, and I would be given the option to freely communicate and interact with them, which would be ideal.”

But that means standards and interoperability are needed, he said. And while there are standards and attempts to build a unified holistic approach, Pedi said he is unlikely to actually reach one metaverse.

“Just as there are many standards for data exchange formats for image files, such as jpg, png, and Tiff,” he said. “There could also be many standardized versions of the metaverse. So collaboration is only possible if there is a clear sense of ownership. The intent is that it can be degrading or raise red flags for those who want to share it with others.”

According to Pedi, in the virtual world, once someone finds a way to get the bits and bytes together, they can modify them, duplicate them, and perform various operations with them. It is said that it is a red flag because it becomes like this.

“It’s a vulnerability that we all have to face. So it leads to some consideration in the metaverse’s digital content creation strategy,” he said. “How do I lock down my ownership? I haven’t figured it out yet, other than getting a lawyer to write a big document. So my guess is that most companies will stick to their own solutions. The result is a barrier to interoperability that must be overcome: not insurmountable, but negotiable, and standards are the exchange of formats for digital content. It doesn’t necessarily mean that we all agree to be open.”

Presenting a complex bubble chart showing the world of metaverse digital content creation tools, Pedi said: “This is the real reason why the Metaverse can exist as a collective term for ideas and technologies. Digital content is a highly complex and fragmented world. and production departments very easily.”

He said that if you look at the credits of Marvel movies, you’ll be amazed at how many people are involved in making them, and how it goes on and on forever.

“What that tells us is that it’s very difficult to get into content production at scale,” he says. “The sheer amount of work of managing all the different disciplines and subject matter experts alone can be overwhelming. So the first strategy is to identify your niche and stick to something very close to it as you evolve. That’s it.”

He pointed out that all of these features are useful for applications, which is essentially why they didn’t give a metaverse definition. There are too many things to talk about.

“For fashion brands, the metaverse only makes sense if it can be applied to the sale of clothes, shoes and apparel,” says Pedi. “For a manufacturing company like Siemens, it’s about the digital twin, and the digital twin gives you a model of your company. [factory] So you can analyze them and make meaningful changes to different apps on the factory or manufacturing floor. ”

Therefore, the scale of metaverse content creation in these two examples is very different and requires a very distinct skill set from the author.

Additionally, games place even greater demands on content due to tight integration with fast-moving interactions.

“It dictates what kind of 3D modeling tools you use in each instance, even if they have similarities in essence,” says Pedi.


How would you define the metaverse?

What strategy should businesses pursue? Regardless of the seriousness of the application, the more the metaverse imposes demands on content creators, the more serious the metaverse becomes.

“If you’re a graphic designer, for example, I don’t think you can get by with just Photoshop,” he said. “It is inherently connected to a host of different applications that need to be integrated. One area I think about is cloud-based workflows.”

During the pandemic, remote workflows have become standard practice for many developers. That’s why cloud-based workflows that can collaborate across distances and different time zones have become invaluable.

“Zoom was a perfect example of how it worked. So for creators who often work alone, or who rely on close relationships and collaboration with other people, cloud-based workflows Adapting to the will be an important shift, and that’s not how the metaverse works,” Pedi said.

“I don’t think we know enough about the metaverse users,” he said. “Maybe that’s why we read so much about what the Metaverse is, is it dead, can I get rich, etc. Can we build a house there?” ?Everyone has some kind of comment on whether it’s Web3D with blockchain.Do you know?”

best approach

User-generated content will be a large part of the metaverse.

The best approach, he said, is to always stick to the notion that users are users, no matter how they enter the world you create.

Users don’t use applications or step into virtual worlds just because they’re important. They only go there if they find it beneficial and appealing,” he said.

“It’s very easy,” Pedi said. “Maybe due to the hype surrounding the metaverse, expectations will be different. But the basic requirement is that users create the metaverse, which is no different from any other 3D application. And don’t forget that working with 3D isn’t completely natural or intuitive for everyone, maybe the real world is 3D, but it has nothing to do with the virtual world. is not.”

Pedy wonders why so many metaverse applications insist on people moving around the room and acting as if they were in the real world.

“Being in the same space and having those constraints at the same time seems like a counterintuitive way to navigate a virtual world,” he says. “Virtual worlds can take away all those onerous requirements. “

Then there is user-generated content.

“One aspect of digital content creation in the metaverse that should not be overlooked is enabling users to create their own content. Again, the virtual world is not the real world,” he said. rice field.

User engagement depends not only on users’ ability to interact with existing content, but also on their ability to create and add their own content.

For consumers, the virtual world should take something from the real world and give it fantasy with virtual digital content. But in business it’s just the opposite.

“The metaverse represents an opportunity to experiment with real-world problems, evaluate the results, and improve the real world. I would also say that it requires a great deal of collaboration with stakeholders to be realistic and deliver results that do not exist in the consumer metaverse,” he said.

For example, consider airplane design. If you want to use it in the real world, you have to make it perfect.

Looking to the future, Pedy believes the future of digital content creation will include the use of AI.

“That’s easy. What do you mean?” he asked.

That doesn’t necessarily mean we’ll live with robots or have AI companions to help us with our homework.

“Being creative and being super-intelligent are not correlated,” he said. “We’ve built very powerful technologies that people never fully use, even if they have full access to those features. Take spreadsheets, for example. Modern Spreadsheets are a great application, but not many people know how to harness all this power, and the same will be true for AI.”

It has amazing potential and can be made available to all of us by incorporating it into our content creation process. User experience and usability change for better or worse as users learn to use them.

“The big potential for all creators is having a powerful AI helper to fill their weaknesses, their expertise and their brilliance,” he said. “It may help strengthen and broaden the skills of creators in a purely manual way.”

For example, if I want to know something, I look it up and understand it. AI may help overcome that process. He said it doesn’t take jobs away, it helps them get jobs done.

If a major strategic shift were to occur, the question would be how best to integrate AI tools into the metaverse workflow. There are currently no books on how to do that.

“For the future of content creation in the metaverse, there is an overarching theme that strategy must be the creation of effective workflows. He said.

He noted that the Metaverse will become a huge asset class for digital content that has yet to be created. Whether it is interoperable or standardized depends on the self-interest of the people creating the tools and platforms and how they want to spread them. Pedy said he doesn’t expect that to happen anytime soon.

Future Adobe and Unity companies around the world will offer these commodities and create tools that enable distributed workflows and applications that host content creation tools. Big companies will try to dominate this field. Pedy says the best way to protect your intellectual property is to create your own tools and a universal backlot. Those are your assets.

“To continue the cinematic trope, build your own universal backlot,” he said. “In the Metaverse, your creativity is a valuable data point. You can even turn it into digital content. Stock up on core data and create outputs, and don’t worry about the end goal of the Metaverse.”

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