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MetaVRse released the its Engine 2.0. (MetaVRse)
MetaVRse released the its Engine 2.0. (MetaVRse)

This Week in ARExperience

June 9, 2022 by Jon Jaehnig
  • MetaVRse has released the second generation of its Engine to an early access beta program now taking applications. So far, virtually all of what we’ve seen from the Canadian company has been in the realm of eCommerce and product visualization. While there’s still a lot of that, a demo video of the new engine shows other use cases including social and medical applications.

    • Things that we’re particularly excited about: an “automatic NFT generator” and a custom avatar system. Don’t forget that the WebAR experiences made with the platform are hardware agnostic, making MetaVRse potentially the most robust platform for such widely available experiences.
  • For even more world creation tools, FRAME worked with Microsoft to incorporate natural language input into the WebVR collaboration tool. A blog post by the company announcing the project called it “speaking the world into existence,” and allows users to customize their immersive worlds through spoken commands with the help of AI.

    • This project is the most recent (and potentially strongest) example of the low-or-no-code movement in XR that aims to increase the accessibility of these experiences. This helps to lower the “skills gap” that comes from increase in demand outpacing the increase in developer expertise and education.
  • Meta has named its first Chief Information Security Officer – company vice president Guy Rosen, who has been with Facebook/Meta for almost ten years. As of this writing, the news is not yet public per Meta, having been initially broken by Joseph Menn of the Washington Post and subsequently confirmed by Rosen on Twitter.

    • The move is likely in response to recent confirms regarding safety on Meta’s various platforms, particularly those in VR. Rosen said that his roll will “look across the breadth of safety and security risks.” The company also has two chief privacy officers.
  • Also from Twitter, last week marked the thirtieth anniversary of “Snow Crash” — the book that gave us the word “metaverse.” The event was marked by author Neal Stephenson, as well as more current technologists including Tony Parisi and Rony Abovitz.

    • Speaking of, Parisi also published a Medium article about Lamina1, a company “bridging the spatial/Metaverse world with the crypto world.” Parisi, Abovitz, Stephenson, as well as financial strategist Peter Vessenes are all involved in the project, which went public this week.

WebXR led this week’s news. New engines, new community events, and new features help to establish this area of the industry. While there are certainly benefits to app-based experiences for some use cases, WebXR is establishing itself as versatile, accessible, potent, and nimble. And, again, anything that helps XR with its accessibility problems (from the developer end and the consumer end) can hardly be a bad thing.

On the other end, we have a lot of “news” from this week that might not be news for a while. Whether Meta giving an old member a new position (that it arguably already filled twice) actually makes the platform safer for users is yet to be seen. Further, we’ve seen a lot of companies claiming that they will bring blockchain to the metaverse, but we haven’t seen any with a suite like that of Lamina1.