Elon University

A vision for the future

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Name: Ken Rigby

From: Puerto Rico

Bio: 90 articles on Go on this subject & www.mellanium.com

Area of Expertise: Technology Developer/Administrator

Topic: General, Overarching Remarks

Headline: The 3D Web will replace the 2D Web by 2012

Nutshell: We shall be surfing from a mostly 2D environment to the 3D environment by 2012.


We know the past and present of 3D Virtual Real Worlds, but what lies ahead, on the other side of the hill? What can we realistically expect? This question has no definitive answer. Just as Bill Gates said in the mid 1980s that a computer would never need more that 640 kilobytes of memory, there is no foreseeable end to what lies ahead. Since 3D Virtual Real Worlds will require ever-more-advanced technology to expand its environment and functionality, standardizing of needed tools, formats, and interface equipment is a pressing and urgent requirement.

Physical connectivity to humans is an area that is happening and will continue to evolve, e.g., writing images into the retina of the eye. This allows one’s retina to act as a screen. Also, neurosurgeons are using brain implants. With the rapid advancement in processor and network performance, the millions of signals (EEG, etc.) involved in brain activity are to some extent interpretable.

The rise of 3D architectural and object computer modeling is now commonplace. Already, a virtual world allows a designer or consumer to view and customize a proposed environment before it is constructed. The Virtual Real World enables this technology to attain accuracies of scale and detail in the perspective view; enabling immersion in a virtual environment. The customer can create or modify ("what-if" scenarios) any aspect of what seems unsatisfactory.

3D Virtual Real Worlds can be created to record the present, reconstruct the past, or propose the future. Levels of detail are infinite and information access is much easier to assimilate and react to.

Many ethical questions have arisen in this area. Should we be creating these worlds? People speculate, with the exaggerated nature of entertainment, that we run the risk of making the real world obsolete. The truth is, we have nothing to fear in the near future. There is an enormous gap between what could be and what is possible, even though the gap it is getting smaller.

We are only in the sixth to seventh decade of computer integration and interfacing in human experience. With the rapid advancement of computing and networking power, visionaries tend to over-romanticize what is apparent. We will not be destroying our real world with this technology; it is too new to even consider the risk.

The truth is we know about as much about the future as Charles Babbage did when he was struggling with the early idea of the computing machine years ago. 3D Virtual Real Worlds must be integrated into humanity by acceptance, and will continue to do so, hopefully ameliorating our lives in the relentless process.

This is discussed at greater length at web site http:/www.mellanium.com/

MellaniuM Design and Tele3DWorld will support the workshop by providing example 3D environments and implementation expertise. http://mellanium.com/

Date Submitted: January 2, 2008