We are moving into the digital world, where the line between virtual and physical lives continues to blur. In this tech era, a metaverse technology is emerging that promises to merge these realities further. But do you really know what metaverse is?
SwissCognitive Guest Blogger: Gaurav Kanabar, Founder and CEO, Alphanso Tech – “Metaverse: How AI is Bridging the Virtual and Real?”
And importantly, how can businesses make use of it? In this article, we explore the intersection of the metaverse and AI; the discussion is on how AI can deliver on the promises of this growing tech.
What is Artificial Intelligence?
Before understanding how AI bridges the metaverse, we need to understand both concepts in depth. Hence let’s first understand what artificial intelligence is. AI is a programming process that helps the system make decisions for itself, this can be done in many ways, but the most well-known is through machine learning.
ML is a subset of AI (artificial intelligence) that enables computers to learn from previous data that is also without being explicitly programmed. This is done through the process of error and trial, as the computer tries to search patterns in the data it has provided with.
Deep learning is an advanced form of ML that uses artificial neural networks to learn from data. However, neural networks are inspired by the way the human brain works; they can learn tasks like natural language processing and image recognition.
What is Metaverse & Web3?
Now you might be aware of what AI is; hence let’s check what metaverse is. “Metaverse” is a term used for a virtual world that exists outside of the physical world. It can easily be thought of as a 3D digital world that enables users to engage and interact with each other. This technology can be used for entertainment, education, business, etc.
Metaverse is based on blockchain technology and utilizes cryptocurrency known as exchange-traded products (ETPs) to pay for products and services. It’s undoubtedly a powerful concept. But have you ever imagined how impactful it could be when you add the problem-solving capabilities of artificial intelligence into the equation?
This modern technology brings forward an interactive environment that enables enterprises to build a virtual reality environment with interactive life elements. However, as a technology, AI’s relevance to the profitability and growth of companies is evident. A McKinsey survey shows that more than 22% of companies found that 5% of the growth in EBIT is attributed to artificial intelligence.
Web3 is a concept used to describe the next generation of the web. In simple words, it’s a new way of using the internet. It is designed to make information sharing and interaction processes easier.
Unlike Web1 & 2, which are mostly used for browsing websites, Web 3 enables users to interact with each other through apps known as “dapps” which are decentralized apps that enable users to control their own data. The metaverse is part of Web3; it uses blockchain technology to get this decentralization by storing data on a distributed ledger.
Key Promises of Metaverse:
There are lots of promises that metaverse offers, some of them are as under.
This digital space is a decentralized world where users can control their data; it’s stored on a distributed ledger, making it tamper-proof and secure.
Modern technology metaverse uses blockchain to verify users’ identities, ensuring that only authorized users can access data.
This modern tech is also used as a smart contract to automate transactions. Metaverse can be used to build a marketplace for AI apps or to create a system where data is automatically exchanged among the parties.
The native cryptocurrency can be used to pay for goods and services or reward AI applications for completing tasks.
What is the Metaverse? Why Does it Need AI?
The metaverse is termed as an expansive digital space where users can interact with 3D virtual avatars and digital objects each other in a complex manner that emulates the real world. The metaverse uses technology like AI, ML, crypto, etc. Its idea was coined by science fiction 90s writer Neal Stephenson and was developed in parts by companies like Microsoft, Second Life, Decentraland, and most recently Meta, formerly Facebook.
Facebook is recognized for its work in AI and sophisticated AI algorithms. The AI research company spans diverse areas such as self-supervised speech processing, content analysis, computer vision, whole-body pose estimation, robotic interactions, and much more.
All this could inform the company’s future direction as Facebook Meta and drive the foundations of its metaverse version. AI apps are much more common than you think. A Deloitte report shows that more than 50% of respondents said that their companies utilize AI for at least one business function. It’s also found that more than 40% of enterprises have an organization-wide artificial intelligence approach in place.
In customer-facing apps, artificial intelligence plays a crucial role through natural language processing, faster computing, facial recognition, and other sorts of other under-the-hood processes. It’s a matter of time; artificial intelligence is applied to AI and VR to build smarter immersive worlds.
Artificial Intelligence has the potential to parse significant volumes of data at lightning speed to drive action and generate insight. Users can leverage artificial intelligence for decision-making or link AI with automation for low-touch processes. The metaverse uses virtual and augmented reality in combination with blockchain and AI to create accurate and scalable virtual words.
Top AI Use Cases of Metaverse to Have Deep Insight
Many have started using the metaverse to make money. They are investing in metaverse development services to get their idea into the virtual world. The virtual reality world technically exists as AI; however, the combo of the two unlocks a whole degree of verisimilitude; this can impact the AI use cases, which are as follow:
Accurate Avatar Creation
Users are at the focus of the metaverse, and your avatar’s precision will decide the quality of experience for you and the participants. Artificial Intelligence can analyze 2D user pictures and 3D scans to come up with a realistic simulated rendition.
It’s a plot of various emotions, facial expressions, features, and hairstyles brought on by aging, etc., to make the digital avatar more dynamic. Companies including “Ready Player Me” are using AI to develop avatars for the metaverse. Facebook Meta is working on its version of the technology.
Virtual avatars are 3D versions of chatbots that exist in the digital space. They are not replicas of other persons; instead, they’re much similar to AI-enabled NPCs (non-playing characters) in a video game that can respond and react to the actions in a VR world.
Digital humans are developed using AI tech and are crucial to the metaverse landscape. From automated assistants in virtual reality workplaces to NPCs in gameplay, there are myriad apps, and companies such as Soul Machines and Unreal Engine have already invested in this direction.
The main way digital humans use artificial intelligence is for language processing. AI helps break down natural languages such as English, convert them into an ML readable format, arrive at a response, perform analysis, convert the results back into English and send the same to users.
The process takes a fraction of a second, like a real conversation. The perfect part is that the result can be converted into different languages based on the artificial intelligence training so that users can easily access the metaverse globally.
World Expansion at Scale
When artificial intelligence is fed with historical information, it learns from outputs and tries to come up with its own. The AI output gets better each time with input, machine learning, and human feedback reinforcement. Artificial Intelligence will be able to perform various tasks and provide output to human beings.
Companies such as NVIDIA are training artificial intelligence to build virtual worlds. This breakthrough is instrumental in steering scalability for the metaverse. These digital worlds can be added without the intervention of humans.
AI can assist in human-computer interactions (HCI). AI-powered VR headset sensors can read and predict the muscular and electrical patterns to understand exactly how you want to move inside the metaverse.
Artificial intelligence helps to recreate an authentic sense of VR touch. It also aids in voice-enabled navigation, enabling you to interact with virtual objects without having to use hand controllers.
Challenges Around AI in the Metaverse
It is crucial to remember that the metaverse is a new era of operational and research, and the implementation of AI can run into issues. For example, there can be queries around:
AI-Based Content Ownership
It’s really difficult to know who holds the copyright or can get an advantage from the VR-based content created by artificial intelligence.
How can you ensure that users understand they’re interacting with artificial intelligence and not other humans? How can you prevent deep fraud and fakes?
Fair Use of ML & AI
Users can legally apply artificial intelligence and machine learning tech to interact in the metaverse world. For example, they can use artificial intelligence code to win games.
Use Data for AI Model Training
How can we train artificial intelligence for the metaverse? What’re the authorization mechanisms involved? If similar AI-based algorithms display bias, what are the resources? Is it a digital human?
Without artificial intelligence, it’s difficult to build scalability, authenticity, and engaging metaverse experience. That is why companies such as Meta are working with think tanks as well as ethics groups to stem the AI risks without curbing the tech potential.
Metaverse maturation is imminent. By combining metaverse and artificial intelligence, organizations can easily transform business impact in the real and virtual world. We hope this article might help you understand how Metaverse and AI help solve problems in real-world scenarios. The potential of both technologies in the different sectors is far-reaching.
About the Author:
Gaurav Kanabar is the Founder and CEO of Alphanso Tech; an India-based IT Consulting company that provides video streaming script and other app development services to individuals as per their specific demands. Besides this, the founder also love