April 9, 2020
COVID-19 is a defining moment for our lives and for the world. For the next unknown months or years - there is a default level of hardship in the world than before. In a way, this is our first global problem. It’s a problem for all humans, this little virus.
What exactly will this moment define?
The COVID-19 pandemic - or as should have been called SARS-CoV-2 - is going to leave the world a very different place than it was before the pandemic. I honestly hope that we can look back and be grateful at the changes that have come because of it. Specifically, I would like to discuss the changes that will be coming technologically, since that is a lens with which I view the world.
Technologically, virtual everything is about to pick up a lot of new users. Virtual games, virtual work, and virtual money. Entire virtual economies will begin to sprout. Imagine virtual cities where you can go grab a virtual coffee or beer with your friends. In a COVID world, this is the main way you can meet up with other people. As I wrote about the other day, last week I attended a symposium in Virtual Reality with a friend of mine who lives in London. I live in Los Angeles.
You know what people love about Zoom video conferences? The backgrounds. Everyone loves to customize their appearance. With virtual meetings where everyone’s avatars are sitting around a table environment instead of on a Zoom call and looking at a screen share on a virtual screen - this is going to be even more alluring.
What you don’t really need in virtual reality is USD. I could see there being some cases for people getting paid in USD, but way more likely I believe that people will earn some sort of virtual currency. Perhaps that virtual currency can be traded for USD later. I’m not sure, but for the therapists, coaches, and artists - these types of jobs - even if performed in VR will need to be able to pay real world rent and utilities.