At LAMINA1, Neal Stephenson will focus on helping artists and other people who make things of value get paid fairly for what they do in the Metaverse.
Neal Stephenson, the author who coined the term “Metaverse” 30 years ago is launching a Metaverse-focused blockchain project called LAMINA1.
He has also revised his vision for the Metaverse, stating that the experience will most likely be geared toward flat 2D screens rather than virtual or augmented reality technology such as headsets and lenses, as proposed by Meta and Microsoft.
Stephenson is a well-known speculative fiction author who, in his 1992 sci-fi novel Snow Crash, explored the concept of a virtual reality world known as the Metaverse. Between 2014 and 2020, the 62-year-old worked as the chief futurist for Magic, an augmented reality (AR) company.
According to OG crypto investor and former Bitcoin Foundation chairman Peter Vessenes’ June 8 announcement, Stephenson and he has co-founded a new layer-1 blockchain called LAMINA1 that they hope will serve as the “base layer for the Open Metaverse.”
“A place to build something a little closer to Neal’s vision — one that prioritizes creators, both technical and artistic, one that provides support, spatial computing technology, and a community to support those who are building out the Metaverse,” Vessenes wrote, adding that the network will “probably” be carbon negative.
At this point, specifics on the project are scarce, but Ethereum co-founder Joseph Lubin is a notable name on the project’s list of early investors.
Regarding the roles of the co-founders at LAMINA1, Vessenes stated:
Vessenes stated that he will be focused on getting the blockchain up and running as soon as possible by establishing “the necessary governance, technology, node operators, IP partners, artists, business partners, and funds.”
The Metaverse is depicted in Stephenson’s 1992 novel as a virtual urban environment accessible via a global fiber-optic network and VR headsets. The book contains themes such as social inequalities, centralized control, and constant advertisements, as well as the concept of virtual real estate.
Stepheson tweeted some thoughts about the Metaverse earlier today, predicting that much of the Metaverse will be designed for screens rather than VR headsets.
Stephenson noted that when he first wrote about it three decades ago, he didn’t see high-quality video games becoming widely available to consumers.
The author went on to say that modern game development is still centered on screens for both the developer and the consumer and that a hybrid approach for the Metaverse that includes both 2D screens and AR/VR tech, rather than purely VR, will be used.
“We navigate and interact with extremely rich 3D environments using mechanical typewriter-designed keyboards.” It’s real-life steampunk. “A Metaverse that ignores those users and the developers who create those experiences would be starting on the wrong foot,” he said.