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Neal Stephenson named the Metaverse. Now, he’s building it


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Neal Stephenson invented the metaverse. At least from an imaginary point of view. Though other sci-fi writers had similar ideas — and VR pioneers built artificial worlds — Stephenson’s 1992 novel Snow Not only did it create a vision of escaping to a place where digital replaces the physical, it also gave it a name. That book solidified him as a great writer, and since then he’s been wildly successful. But at the end of last year, Stephenson’s pervasive, enduring, and profound alternate reality was suddenly known as next step in computer. “Metaverse” has become a from buzzand Big Tech raced to produce it. Most notably Facebook, which spends billions of dollars on its Reality Labs, renamed to Meta. Everyone from Microsoft to Amazon has suddenly come up with a metaverse strategy, although the technologies that can make it happen are still beyond our control.

At the time, Stephenson went public most recent novel, with topics related to climate engineering. “That became ‘Neal, how do you feel about the Metaverse?’ Stephenson said. The answers Stephenson provided to that question were a combination of fun or a wired writer recognized, disgusting. For one thing, the metaverse follows Snow is a somewhat outdated language, a fact that companies overlook when they tell us it would be a great place to live. And watching his fictional work get colonized by profit-seeking growth geeks is no fun.

But this is a strange episode. Stephenson is currently entering the market with his own stance on how his fictional concept could turn out to be a real world. He’s partnering with a crypto guy—Peter Vesseneshead of the Bitcoin Foundation — to get started Lamina1a company hopes to create a scaffolding so that creators can build an open supermarket.

“It’s like Neal is coming down from the mountains like Gandalf, to restore the metaverse into an open, decentralized order,” said Rony Abovitz, former CEO of Magic Leap who is a strategic advisor to Lamina1, central and creative”.

Indeed, it seems that righteousness is the brand name for this new venture. Vessenes admits that there was initially suspicion that Stephenson was “Kardashian-ing”, jumping into a musical group he happened to start. “That might be the first question: Is Neal selling his brand to some damn super naughty company?” Vessenes said, who added that given his own background as a Bitcoin evangelist, the second question is whether Lamina1 is a cashier. “But when people talk to us, they conclude this is a principled effort,” he said. “So then they ask, ‘Is this real? Are you really going to try to do this? After Vessenes confirmed he would do so, Hoffman wrote a personal check.



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