Meta's Tech Roadmap
No surprise Meta needs a lot of different technology to power such a big vision, well as mentioned they are working on all areas surrounding it including; Displays, Audio, Inputs, Haptics, Hand tracking, Eye tracking, Mixed Reality, Sensors, Graphics, Computer vision, Avatars, Perceptual science and Ai. However, their chief scientist Micheal Abrash highlighted a few technological breakthroughs the company has been making.
Breakthrough 1 – Hyper-realistic codec Avatars
Part of Meta’s Metaverse play is avatars, although stylised avatars are going to be the norm for people when hanging out with friends, at work or with close ones you may want a more realistic representation. Below is the state of the art in terms of Meta’s avatar research showing off the next advancement in their Codec avatars which we got introduced during 2019’s event.
Wait for it!
The left is a real-time render of the person’s avatar and the right is someone walking around it in VR.
Breakthrough 2 – Real-time high-resolution environment
Another play will be the reconstruction and representation of environments in virtual space. Below you can see the reconstruction (left) of the real scene (right) all achieved in real-time.
Breakthrough 3 – Project Aria AI-driven live maps
Announced last year was Live Maps, essentially a semantic layering of the real world to drive True-AR glasses. Abrash demonstrated an update in line with their Project Aria research to understand how Ai and glasses can interact with the physical world with semantic layering. Below shows how the Ai recognises objects within the world and can pull information from it or recently demonstrated its ability to predict what you are about to do before you do – handy when you want to turn the TV or lights on before you even raise your hand to flip the light switch.
Breakthrough 4 – Wrist-based interaction
We got a glimpse last year of Meta’s EMG (Electromyopgrahy) based controller. EMG is a novel input approach that can read the signals on the motor neurons that run from the wrist to the hand. In a sense, it’s a brain-computer interface. Meta showed off how far they have come and how a user could use very small movements to write out a message.
Meta is a $100B+ company with the full capability to execute a vision like this and certainly has key visionaries such as Boz and Abrash to bring this to fruition. It’s going to be a while until we truly realise this vision, technology shifts aren’t sudden they slowly happen over time, but Meta’s visionary videos are perhaps a needed jolt to the system.
One thing is for sure, this is certainly going to light a fire and raise awareness with many organisations as they look towards the next decade and begin to question and ask “what is our metaverse strategy?“, as we begin to enter this new era of the internet.
If you’re interested to explore this space, please get in touch with our team.
Images @ Meta.