Metaverse has become a hot topic ever since Mark Zuckerburg announced his intention of infusing virtual reality technology in the Facebook platform. The exciting possibilities of immersive experiences on the internet, particularly on social platforms, could transform human-digital interactions. The evolution of digital experience in the Metaverse is going to be centred around the ability to transact, socialise, work and entertain in the interconnected virtual worlds which would simulate functioning in the physical world. While it is anticipated that Metaverse would require a combination of advanced hardware and software, AI would play a significant role in making the new experience a reality.
Currently, AI driven models are centred on supervised learning – where machines are trained by humans for performing specific tasks. The approach that would shape MetaAI is one in which machines can learn without human supervision and are task-independent, with ability to learn from the interpretation of patterns. Researchers are exploring machines learning not only languages through Natural Language Processing (NLP), but also images and videos, thus moving towards unified models capable of learning and interpreting multiple modes of content simultaneously.
For Metaverse to function in the interconnected world, the platform it would require needs to be always on and massively scalable. AIOps would facilitate efficient functioning of this platform by being able to manage the entire infrastructure and by also providing insights as required. As Gartner has said, AIOps will help with “big data and machine learning to automate IT operations processes, including event correlation, anomaly detection and causality determination.”
Metaverse is a step closer to Web3 which focusses on democratisation of internet access as well as social networking. Towards this end, it would be important to consider equal access and inclusivity for those with disabilities and those who face other barriers. This would call for special attention around user interfaces as well as more sound security practices in order to protect vulnerable segments such as women and children. For example, Arize is able to spot hate speech and is able to prevent abuse in India. AI would also be at the forefront of facilitating personalised experiences along with Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) and blockchains in the domains of learning, sports, gaming or any other form of entertainment.
If Metaverse lives up to its promise, it would open up a plethora of opportunities for technology providers, creative folks and users alike and herald a new phase in human-digital convergence. At the same time, we should be aware of its current limitations and the time it would take to perfect it for popular adoption.
In Metaverse, digital humans would have the ability to create human-like conversations and interactions. This may lead to confusion in the minds of users, making them wonder if they are interacting with real humans or digital humans and increasing the chances of fraud. The questions of ownership, protection against use of different codes used to subvert functioning as planned by the owner or provider of a service and the lack of adequate data to get trained until the platform reaches a stage of maturity, would be some of the challenges that need to be overcome before large-scale transition to Metaverse can take place.
In the meanwhile, since Metaverse is a multi-dimensional approach to digital immersion, it is certainly worthwhile to research, experiment and make advances in multiple technologies as the journey in itself would be rewarding.
The writer is chairperson, Global Talent Track, a corporate training solutions firm