Life in the era of 3D Virtual Worlds – The promising future of 3D Virtual Worlds
We have seen how 3D virtual worlds shaped up and what its influence is in the present era. But what about the future? What promise does it hold? Let us have a look.
Shopping and Business
The very purpose of technology is to make life easier. And that means getting most things done within the comfort of your room. We have all come across the arduousness of shopping, especially during a holiday season. After hours of travelling, we come across the hurdle of long line of customers and this also spoils the chance to get effective assistance from sales representatives. Moreover, shops in the real world have a closing hour and we have to be there before the shutter goes down. Most of us even take a day out of our work to go shopping! Now, what if there is an online virtual store of your favorite retailer that you can visit 24*7, sitting in your own home. Additionally, what if there are robots or customized digital sales assistants that provide you one on one assistance! You don’t have to wait for your turn to get attended and you can communicate in any language as you wish. Quite often, when you order clothes online, you find that the delivered product is not exactly as you had imagined and it may not fit you properly. But, in virtual worlds, you can create an exact 3D replica of yourself which makes it possible to try on clothes virtually! You can sit in your room and be absolutely sure that the cloth you are buying suits you perfectly. Retailers will also get to know your taste based on your purchase history and your digital sales assistant can instantly suggest you outfits that you will love! Seems like the ‘NetFlix’ of shopping. Similarly, if you are buying fancy items or home accessories you can check out its working without any fuss at all. You don’t have to worry about breaking or damaging it and you can even expose them to different conditions and see how they behave. For example, you can analyse how good an air conditioner is and how much can it comfort you during the peak of summer or you can try keeping different things on your virtual refrigerator and see how it behaves during different seasons! With one tap at the product, you can also get the complete history of the product such as where it was made, how it was made, what materials were used etc. You will also know the expiry date and what harm the product can cause if you consume it after the expiry period. If you are purchasing food or drink products you can even check out how fresh they are! Future shopping will only require you to have a gadget like smartphone that has internet access. Nearly all the major tech firms have already introduced digital home assistants like ‘Siri’ and ‘Alexa’ that respond to voice commands. In the near future, you can just command a shopping list and your digital assistant will add them to a virtual trolley. Moreover, you can set up a regular shopping schedule and you will never have to even think about buying day to day products! Furthermore, most companies are in the process of linking home appliances like fridge, coffee machine etc to the internet so that they can fill up automatically without any interaction with their owner!
Virtual worlds will be a huge boon for future advertising. The future of advertising will no longer be of observing but will be of experiencing. You will be able to feel them and just by thinking about brands you will be able to release oxytocin, the same hormone that is generated when you are hugged! Advertisers can determine what kind of ads do we like through smart watches that capture our pulse and every ad we see will depend on who we are. Advertisers can filter out ads based on our gender, age, purchase history, brands we follow in social media, our friends network etc and thus make the entire ad viewing experience more personalized. Today, we come across several advertisements that is of no use to us. And most of them we can’t even skip. Now, imagine if we get to watch only the advertisements of products we love. Space is never a problem with virtual worlds and depending upon a user’s frequent visiting sites, advertisements can come anywhere. In other words, we can view advertisements on the go and be updated about the latest modifications and developments in the products we love. With a simple tap, you will be able to analyse the features of a product and the content and style of narrative in the advertisement will change as per the simulations we make! Along with virtual worlds, the other important tool that will significantly change the style of advertisements is Virtual Reality. What if you could live inside the luxury apartment before you make the purchase? Live inside, check out the floor, tiles, windows, views or even determine how comfortable you are during different climates and seasons before you make a deal! This is the future of virtual reality advertisements. Before buying a car, you can virtually ride through the locations where you will be regularly driving through and check how the car fares. You can even go into the minute mechanical levels of each component and see how they all shape up to smoothly run the car! Also, instead of interrupting people with ads, marketers can sponsor virtual reality experiences that people will reach out for. For example, during the 2014 FIFA World Cup, Coca-Cola staged a VR experience where participants got into a model of the locker room in Brazil’s Maracana Stadium. Then, using Head Mounted Displays, they moved from the locker room and played on the field! Moreover, brands can also offer you virtual entries towards various events or programs. Various big events will have many brands as collaborators and imagine Coca-Cola giving you a virtual seat for a World CUP Final or a front row seat during an Akino Concert! Yes, that is the future.
In all possibilities, your room will be your future workspace. You might be working with a giant corporate but you will not have to shuttle to and fro your office everyday. You can easily provide your access credentials and simply log in to a virtual workspace using your 3D avatar and move on to your work! You can meet with colleagues, take part in discussions with managers and all by just sitting in your room. Managers can easily track the performance of each and every employee without physically having to be there. So, in the future, geography might not be a barrier at all. You can sit in your own room and get employed by a firm from anywhere in the world! You can see each other and communicate, wherever you are, using facilities such as video call but that doesn’t really provide you the benefits of sitting next to each other. For example, it is extremely difficult to show your supervisor or manager what problems you are facing while performing a work in your system. But, in virtual worlds, your supervisor can come and sit with you and guide you, even if he is really miles and nations away! Remember Arnold in the Paul Verhoeven film ‘Total Recall’? If you have to take a break from your work and enjoy leisure time, your employer can even assign you with teams that take you for a virtual tour. You can visit any place you like and it will feel absolutely real. You will have all the memories and feelings of a person who actually visited that site in real! Virtual tours can be useful for students and explorers too. The promises of the future is mighty big indeed. In a similar way, governments too can set up virtual offices so that you can easily get all your legal requirements and questions addressed easily. There will also be virtual police stations where you can enter and lodge your complaint!
Virtual worlds can severely empower distance education with virtual classrooms and universities and by remaining in your room you can attain a professional certificate of your choice. Several schools and universities already provide interactive online teaching and in the future its scope is only going to expand. You can get into a virtual classroom, attend classes and even take exams. Your professors can monitor you even better than in real life and make sure students practice no foul play during exams. Just like you can get employed by any firm in the world, you can attain a professional degree from any university in the world and in the future there will even be universities that exist exclusively in the virtual worlds alone. Even normal college going students can enhance their knowledge through virtual groups and classrooms created by experts. Students and professors can create avatars and enter into virtual classrooms run by experts of another nation and engage in productive discussions. Information will flow easily and interacting with different students and professors who deal with same topic will drastically improve the quality of education. Through virtual reality, students will also be able to relive any historical period, explore the molecular and atomic particles of any organism and even take a visit to any place in the universe! If education is power, the future generation will be full of super heroes!
Medicine and Healthcare
Establishments such as Mercy Virtual Care Center in U.S have already started the trend of virtual healthcare centers. This 125000 square foot facility has no waiting rooms or hospital beds but houses more than 300 medical professionals who watches over patients in 38 hospitals spread around seven states. Doctors direct care and provides guidance of treatment to several community hospitals and virtual hospitalists also reads and orders tests and addresses queries from other hospitals. Some doctors even stay in regular touch with chronically ill patients. Mercy Virtual’s president says that the system is working really well as mortality rate has down by 40 percent less than what was expected! Similarly, Virtual Hospitals are already taking shape where e-clinics collect medical information from patients using mobile phone or computer and then pass it on to a General Practitioner at the Virtual Hub. The practitioner will then either provide a diagnosis or refer the patient to relevant Virtual Hospital Department where professionals all around the world are connected through internet. This is the beginning of a wonderful revolution in hospitals and healthcare. In the future, we can walk into an online virtual hospital using our 3D replica and consult a doctor from our home. How often have you heard someone say that you have take the patient abroad for better treatment? Or the patient could have been saved if it was possible to take him abroad. Well… In the future, you can sit at your home and avail the service of any doctor in the world! You can also get live feedbacks and suggestions when you eat something you are not supposed to or if you skip your exercise! Virtual doctors can give you timely tips on how much you should eat, what you should eat, how long should you work, how long should you sleep etc. Technology has always played a vital role in improving the life expectancy of human beings. It will continue to in the future!
Connect with Celebrities and Legends!
You ever wanted to go on a run with Tom Cruise? Or kick the villains along with Arnold? Well.. Now you can. You can easily interact with your favorite celebrities in the virtual world and relive some of their iconic moments together. Stars are no longer unreachable with virtual worlds! How about a football match with Cristiano Ronaldo? A tennis match with Roger Federer? Anything is possible. Just meet with real life like 3D models of your celebrities in virtual world and make them do whatever you want. What about legends of the past? Do you want to meet Nelson Mandela or Mahatma Gandhi and thank them for all their noble acts. You can! Life will never be the same with 3D virtual worlds.
Museums are a great place to relive history. But what if you can witness the history in front of you. Imagine you see a beautiful replica of Alexander the Great’s sword. With just one tap on it, you can see how Alexander himself fought the war! Or if you are in a virtual Eiffel Tower, with a simple click, you can witness how it was constructed. You can take a tour across the Pyramids of Giza and see how ancient Egypt buried Mummies! This, will be a massive help for students especially history majors. You no more have to learn about events or places through textbooks. You can just take a virtual tour and you don’t even need a passport or visa! Isn’t the future cool.
It’s weekend and a latest blockbuster has hit the theaters. You book tickets and take your family to the movie hall. But, in the future, through virtual worlds, the movie hall will come to your home! You can simply walk into a virtual movie hall and experience the movie like in a theater from the comfort of your living room. You also don’t have to worry about being in time as you can get in whenever you want. Additionally, you can also customize the theater settings. If you want to reduce the intensity of the speakers that surround you or if you prefer a bigger screen, you can! Entertainment will be a lot more fun in the future.
Future virtual worlds can help you in quality decision making. For example, suppose you want to book a flight journey. You can get into as many virtual airlines as you prefer, make simulations and decide which one suits you the best! The comfortness, customer service, food, drinks, punctuality and other services of every airline can be thoroughly examined and you can make a decision accordingly.
Suppose you have many buildings or areas owned in Virtual worlds. What can you do with them? There will be many potential seekers and you can easily sell, lease or rent them using virtual money that can be redeemed later to real world money! Who knows, may be the best virtual university of the future or Space centre might well be in your virtual property!
Connect with anyone!
Language will never be a problem with future virtual worlds. You can meet with anyone in the world and communicate in your regional language and artificial intelligence will convert it to the language of the other person. So, you can have friends or even build serious relationship with someone who doesn’t even speak your native language but understands you completely! Geography is another limitation that virtual worlds completely nullify. You can take a trip around Los Angeles by remaining in India or you can even take a virtual visit to Moon or Mars! Unless someone is a criminal or a terrorist, life will be so easy in the 3D virtual worlds of the future.
Gamification and Graphical Realism
The gamification of virtual worlds make it an enjoyable and relishing experience. Even if you are taking your classes in a virtual university or working in a virtual office, the entire process feels like a game and it is a massive help in reducing stress. How often have we discussed about tensions and stress surrounding students and working professionals? Even for doctors performing a complex diagnosis or for a management making a major decision, virtual worlds can help reduce the level of worry involved. Additionally, the graphical realism make virtual worlds a near real life experience. Computer graphics and 3D are ever changing and in the near future, you won’t be able to differentiate between what is real and what is artificial. This way products, people, places, equipments, reports and all will look absolutely real and the fact that you are not in a real world will not even bother you!