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A Week in 12/09/2023

I’m back from a week in London and I have to say I really enjoyed it. Nathan Barley enthusiasts will particularly enjoy the new 180 Strand Soho House where it’s definitely ok to keep it plastic until the end of time. (If you know, you know). Meanwhile, I was deeply entrenched in all things metaverse. I’ve tried out some platforms and they are all mostly the opposite of “totally f***ing Mexico”. Again, I refer you to the lexicon of brilliance which is Nathan Barley—a timeless classic and suddenly very on point again. Fortunately for the idiots are not winning.

metaverse city

Elegance vs The Abyss

The metaverse has always impacted the world of art. But why? And how? In this article by Deutsche Bank, contemporary artists Cao Fei and LuYang share their perspectives. They explore how the digital realm influences creativity, from virtual worlds to gaming cultures. These artists delve deep into the impact of the digital world on our collective imagination and personal identities. In their own unique ways, they address issues of identity, representation, and diversity within the metaverse. Cao Fei explains that she aims to create space and share experiences, while LuYang believes virtual identities are liberating. They also discuss the fine line between preserving the authenticity of physical art experiences and embracing the endless possibilities of the metaverse. I’ve just done a brilliant NFT project for my new book with YEON, so I’m feeling art quite a bit in my day to day and this is a beautiful insight into the art of the NFT as a whole—enjoy!

2-Unlimited and a Bucket of Hooch

Tamagotchi, Global Hypercolour, Voodoo People, POGs and Y2K are just some of the things I think about when I remember my beloved Baby-G. So I naturally jizzed when I saw that Japanese electronics giant Casio is taking a leap into the metaverse by releasing its iconic G-SHOCK watch in NFT format on Polygon's blockchain. They're engaging the community to design these NFTs, making it an interactive experience. It's all happening on Discord, and it's entirely free to join. From September 23, the G-SHOCK CREATOR PASS (GSCP) NFT collection will launch, allowing owners to design and vote on the virtual Casio watch's appearance. It's a fusion of technology and creativity, and the partnership with Polygon ensures a seamless and emission-free experience—noice. Now, shut up and take my money!

Planes, Planes and Digital Twins starring John Candy

Hadean, a British spatial computing company, is teaming up with Singapore's ST Engineering to create large-scale virtual environments for military training and more. This collaboration harnesses ST Engineering's VR Forces and Hadean's spatial computing platform. It's a groundbreaking move that allows for immersive simulations, incident response planning, and command training. The metaverse's application in military contexts is on the rise, speeding up training and delivery timetables. As technology continues to drive metaverse growth, collaborations like this are becoming more common and I for one love this as a diverse use case than the normal brand initiative. The metaverse was made for us to simulate anything with ease. “According to GlobalData analysis, technology deals in the metaverse have increased significantly, with just five confirmed globally in 2004, compared to 1,536 in 2022. So far in 2023, 734 metaverse-related deals have been signed.” Now is the time to try something new.

Making a Stink

I’m no Clive James, nor am I Takeshi Kitano, but this story gave me life. transcosmos and TOKYO FM have taken radio to the metaverse, combining sound, sight, and smell. "Can I ask you something a bit weird? by Masataka Matsutoya," is an innovative radio show recording where a music producer, Masataka Matsutoya, invites the audience to experience scents along with the virtual world. It's a pioneering experiment in connecting with listeners through the metaverse, offering a unique blend of senses for a more immersive experience. I lived in Japan in the 00s and there was a great TV show that sampled the sights and smells of molecular gastronomy. The use of radio and avatars in the metaverse could create a whole new medium—what do you reckon?

The Reagan Effect

Harvard scholar, Christine Kim, argues that governments should impose taxes on income earned in the metaverse to prevent it from becoming a "tax haven." With metaverse spending skyrocketing, taxing this income, often in cryptocurrency, could boost government revenue. Income in the metaverse can provide governments with an opportunity to modernise their tax systems, but challenges like valuation and liquidity must be addressed.

As Ronald Reagan once famously said about government economics: “If it moves, regulate it, if it keeps moving, tax it, and if it stops moving subsidise it.” I predict that when the metaverse starts to get taxed, it will 100% stop moving.

Welcome to Yesterday

UK consumers are diving into the metaverse for shopping, entertainment, gaming, and learning. Roblox remains a popular metaverse platform for the UK consumer but concerns about privacy linger among the curious across the board. NFTs are on the radar, but they've yet to go mainstream. Still, digital goods like clothing for avatars are gaining traction. Ah yes, the power of brand is the strongest—that’s all consumers use the metaverse for, currently. YouTube is the go-to source for NFT information, indicating its increasing influence in the digital realm. The metaverse's evolution is reshaping how users interact with the digital world, offering exciting possibilities for brands to innovate and engage consumers. However, all that said, my take is this: it’s getting late in the day for western hemisphere retail enthusiasts to suddenly look to the metaverse and NFT. As the technology space settles, and you see it in our chart each week, we’re entering a reinvention phase rather than an innovation phase now.

That’s enough metaverse for this week. Well that was well-weapon but we’re still gathering intel for our Machine Learning section. Have you submitted your info? Remember that you can listen to past articles on Spotify too!

Do Something Less Boring

This week I’m hungry and AI might be able to save my bank balance and the planet—you never know.

  1. Samsung Food: All-in-one app for recipe saving, meal planning, grocery shopping, and recipe sharing it’s IoT focused and tasty AF.

  2. Let’sFoodie is an AI tool designed to build in your particular food requirements from allergies to muscle building. It’s Whey-more than a recipe generator (see what I did there?)

  3. ChefGPT. You read that right. No typos here. It does what it says on the tin.

  4. Food AI is food but kawaii.

Can’t cook, won’t cook? Lionix is your kitchen pal.


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