First Metaverse Experiments
FMD Scientific Director Alfonso Molina’s Perspective
We are in the final stages of the first cycle of Vagone FMD. From 01 to 100 in the Metaverse, a project that together with Meta has led us to meet policy makers, institutional stakeholders, local authorities, representatives of SMEs in a weekly meeting, on Wednesdays, at Binario F. In twelve appointments, small groups of 15 or more individuals with the guidance of an expert coach and a classroom tutor were able to explore the potential of the metaverse through real immersion in varying range of experiential proposals.
In preparing for another cycle, I feel like sharing some considerations on this experience. Forecast numbers for the metaverse are truly extraordinary and many consider it the Internet of the future. According to McKinsey, in 2022, it was already worth 120 billion dollars and it could reach 5 trillion dollars by 2030. What is certain is that our travel companion, Meta, believes firmly in its potential and has moved ahead of the maturation of this technology and its definitive form. Several times, during our meetings, the managers insisted that they wanted to work on an open system, a system with a single infrastructure interoperable by different players.
And this, in my opinion, is already an excellent starting point. By mission, by vocation, by personal and professional history, I always wonder what the impact of technology might be on man and the environment, with a particular focus on fragility and gaps of a social, cognitive and personal nature. And now, I wonder what the advantage of the metaverse could be for schools in their heterogeneity, different endowments, and planning. The answer is that the potential for use is strong and important, but as long as we start innovating with what we already have, it can evolve step by step.
It is undeniable that the metaverse poses a new and exciting vision of reality with the ability to influence cognitive abilities but also on the provision of services (from healthcare to research and training) as an environment in which converging technologies provide a sensory and impactful multi-faceted reality.
An interesting initiative in this sense is the construction by the Fondazione Mondo Digitale, with the technological and scientific contribution of Meta, of an “innovation corner” in secondary schools that will be able to conduct their own personal “metaverse experiments” with Meta Quest 2.