Review: “The Rise of the 3D Internet” Part 1

Justin Rattner’s keynote at the Intel Developers Forum was loaded with excellent information for people seeking to understand how the 3D portion of meshverse is unfolding. It’s a lot to take in and organize – the presentation is an hour and 10 minutes plus and there were 42 slides in addition to several live demos. I don’t want to get bogged down trying to review it all at once so I’m going to do a multi-part review that will conclude with a summary.

To kick things off how about a bit of


Rattner starts out by noting the similarities between today’s walled off virtual worlds and the proprietary online services of 1993. Acknowledging that there have been predictions of 3D on the web before, he points out the increasing capabilities and mega-trends that are making it reasonable to expect that there will be a transition from today’s digital communities to a virtual world paradigm. As someone who made such predictions a decade ago, I’m not convinced that we couldn’t be much further down the road because the increased capabilities and mega-trends have been ramping up for quite some time. We can’t change the past but we can make better choices going forward by understanding these trends, by recognizing that it’s 1994 But Moving Faster.



  1. Khepera said

    This is an interesting discussion, particularly the way this pattern links back to previous iterations, like your ref to 1994, or Rattner’s ref to the portals of the 90’s — AOL, Compuserve, et al. And, as you note, it seems we do not learn the lesson broadly enough to apply it in a comprehensive context beyond that of the primary experience.

    This brings to mind the early rail transportation situation in Europe, which they replicated in Africa. Each nation wanted it’s rail system, with its unique rail gauge to be dominant. This precluded rail travel across borders — goods literally had to be offloaded carried and reloaded on the other train to get across the border. This militates against commerce, trade, and, of course profit. It also reinforces secularism, isolationism and complexifies all sorts of discourse and exchange.

    This same scenario is playing out in the propagation and development of virtual worlds. However, we now have no excuse in this, with the burgeoning presence of the Open Source model. Sooner, hopefully, than later, decision-makers will realize that the “____ Without Borders”(doctors, universities, etc.) model provides for a liberated dynamic which maximizes success. They will, of course, have to relinquish their addiction to control.

    Addendum: This also applies to your parallel discussion on the evolution of CAD & 3D printing — secularism is a key obstacle to progress and evolution.

  2. Laurence said

    >we do not learn the lesson broadly enough
    Although it is a problem, I’m not sure learning is the most significant impediment. What seems to be happening is that many of the folks caught up in what you aptly call “addiction to control” have a great deal of intellectual and financial capital coupled with enormous amounts of discipline and tenacity which they exercise in very Terminator/Borg-like manner to maintain their advantage. Open source/standards/courseware is definitely changing this equation but it’s a grind(Firefox is still less than a third of the market). The control addicts have managed to get a large portion of the well prepared people strung out on consumption, mis-informed or so afraid they choose to remain willfully ignorant of what’s going on around them. I feel a change is gonna come so I’m with Gilberto Gil’s comments on Creative Commons
    We have to start preparing the world for the peace and the harmony and the understanding of the possibilities for humanity.

    >early rail transportation situation
    facinating – got links?

    not to worry – God’s Warriors won’t let that happen … but they probably won’t want any evolution going on nor will they be very tolerant of any other religious views let alone other religions so I’m not sure what you’re getting at here.

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