a16z Podcast

Neal Stephenson on The Future of the Metaverse

Episode Summary

When Neal Stephenson coined “the metaverse” three decades ago, his book Snow Crash was found on the shelves of “science fiction”. While the book remains in that category, many of its concepts are now found in reality… Fast forward to 2022, where numerous companies are now building toward their version of the metaverse, including Neal himself – working on Lamina1 – a blockchain company oriented toward creators. While the present metaverses don’t perfectly mimic that from Stephenson’s early imagination, we get the unique opportunity to discuss the various design decisions that he’s making, but also the intersection between the metaverse and gaming, the involvement that AR/VR might play, the evolving role of IP, how artificial intelligence fits in, what he’s building and why, and where he gets all of his ideas from.

Episode Notes

When Neal Stephenson coined “the metaverse” three decades ago, his book Snow Crash was found on the shelves of “science fiction”. While the book remains in that category, many of its concepts are now found in reality…

Fast forward to 2022, where numerous companies are now building toward their version of the metaverse, including Neal himself – working on Lamina1 – a blockchain company oriented toward creators. 

While the present metaverses don’t perfectly mimic that from Stephenson’s early imagination, we get the unique opportunity to discuss the various design decisions that he’s making, but also the intersection between the metaverse and gaming, the involvement that AR/VR might play, the evolving role of IP, how artificial intelligence fits in, what he’s building and why, and where he gets all of his ideas from.

 

Resources: 

Neal’s Twitter: https://twitter.com/nealstephenson

Lamina1’s website: https://www.lamina1.com/

 

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