We shape our interfaces; thereafter, they shape us.
Great stuff as usual, Packy. Thank you for helping us all see the future a little bit sooner.
One maybe helpful analogy for the middle part of your explanations above is the "single sign on" revolution that happened about a dozen years ago. Google and FB offering their credential authorization tools as integrations to sites across the web consolidated and improved many user experiences (and also increased user tracking). Sounds similar to your description of what Meta Mask, Station, Crucible and other wallet/profile tools are trying to do now.
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The idea of setting up your identity in one place, and then bringing it to lots of other places isn't exactly new e.g. OpenID, others. However, it has never happened except to reinforce the dominant position of a few "identity providers" (Google, Facebook, and a small number of others) relegating everybody accepting it to a second-tier role. The would-be leaders in a market never accept identities from the outside (Log into Amazon with Google? I don't think so.) Why would this dynamic be any different in the metaverse?
Great stuff as usual, Packy.
This raises a few meta / philosophical questions which I have always struggled with. While I do believe in the potential of the technology, it is hard to see why this space should continue to remain 'decentralized' and why that is necessarily a good thing (viewed from the perspective of an ordinary consumer and not a Crypto nerd or an early adopter).
Here are a few disparate thoughts / counterfactuals to ponder upon, would be great to hear your take on these:
a) When something gains critical mass among early adopters and the need for 'discovery' layers is widely felt to take it mainstream, isn't a centralized entity/company best placed to build such a layer while capturing some value for itself in a typical Web2.0 aggregator sense?
b) What would necessarily keep someone like Epic Games or Facebook from building a 'closed' or 'centralized metaverse' (probably with its own in-built currency) far earlier versus other Web3.0 alternatives that are coming about? As a user of many Facebook properties (incl an Oculus Quest 2) and Fortnite player, I do not see something obviously anti-consumer with that prospect. Granted that all reservations about power of aggregators / platform abuse start becoming relevant at some point but isn't it ultimately a trade-off between convenience and ideological principles?
c) In other words, why would the Web3.0 interface of the future be necessarily immune to the issues we face with popular Web2.0 interfaces? (e.g. Google's iron fist over Chrome, Facebook & Twitter content moderation, Apple's steely grip over iPhone ecosystem)
Thanks again for a very thought-provoking piece :)
hi Packy, Good stuff! Since there are too many new terms (technical and jargon) - as well as since many of your audience may not have English as a first language - I urge you to simplify your language and provide additional tool-tips that explain jargon or technical words in a simple way (like Wikipedia). Even for a well-read person like me, it takes huge time to skim through your content due to the usage of unnecessarily difficult words and writing style - which makes me fearful to open your mails on a busy Monday week start. (Even though I want to read it)
Currently there seems to be 2 'apps-infrastructure cycles' underway;
- web3 and AI driven
- in the case of AI driven; it's probably; "Software shape our interfaces; thereafter, they shape the software." Humans / Users are simply more like an api (you may have to write an essay fully focused on this new computing platform focusing on interfaces/experience itself)
Hey!!Great article btw your existential optimism one was great. Of course this consciousness class I am taking for int health believes existentialism is just obstacle to pure consciousness. Philosophy is something I never chose to take and, as usual I appreciate your parallels.
on web3. So when you refer to interoperability between the chains did you look at chains like cosmos where you can use parachain? Again I’m just learning. My husband is the one who told me about it. We try not to do finance talk too much but I was deep into it a couple years back.
Polygon & Fantom are other L1s, not Ethereum L2s. EVM compatibility != L2
Good stuff! Look into what Polkamon now Polychain did and are currently doing :) I have nothing to do with the project, but just love the communication approach to new developments and future roadmap.
Also, loved their strategy to integrate DeFi aspects to their collectable NFT collection... and potentially future gaming.
Always helps explain to new comers, that this is just a different tech framework vs current status. How? Where? All tech ground layer framework suffer of these Trilemma:
More to come from this world for sure <3
This was fantastic, Packy! Love that you mentioned Geoffrey Moore's "Crossing The Chasm"
I wrote an in-depth book review on that book. You can read it here if you want https://macro-ops.com/crossing-the-chasm-deep-dive-book-review/