Rabindra Ratan conducts consulting work on the metaverse and other media technologies. His university research has received funding support from companies, including Meta, as well as government organizations, including the National Science Foundation. He also invests personally in cryptoassets, including Ethereum.
Dar Meshi receives funding for research from the European Commission's Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Program. He also owns various cryptoassets, including ether.
You may think the metaverse will be a bunch of interconnected virtual spaces – the world wide web but accessed through virtual reality. This is largely correct, but there is also a fundamental but slightly more cryptic side to the metaverse that will set it apart from today’s internet: the blockchain.
In the beginning, Web 1.0 was the information superhighway of connected computers and servers that you could search, explore and inhabit, usually through a centralized company’s platform – for example, AOL, Yahoo, Microsoft and Google. Around the turn of the millennium, Web 2.0 came to be characterized by social networking sites, blogging and the monetization of user data for advertising by the centralized gatekeepers to “free” social media platforms, including Facebook, SnapChat, Twitter and TikTok.