Literally and virtually in another world

In Virtual Space, remote work – indeed our concept of “Remotopia” – will reach stratospheric new heights, replicating (virtually) everything from the shop floor, to the classroom to the conference room.

Imagine Star Trek’s holodeck, or the Jedi Council of Star Wars that bring all parties into close physical proximity for collaboration – but in mixed reality.

A future in immersive 3-D

The first advanced flight simulators debuted in the 1950s. The top oil companies have had technologically powerful, immersive, in-the-round modeling capabilities for years, allowing drillers, geologists and engineers to plan extraction to the nearest subterranean inch. Automotive designers on either coast collaborate on models, walk through virtual factories and “see” each other’s avatars; the imminent use of sensory haptic suits is not far behind.

All these examples portend a future where every job, every journey – really, every experience – might do the same with finely pixelated, immersive 3-D detail.

Imagine Star Trek’s holodeck, or the Jedi Council of Star Wars that bring all parties into close physical proximity for collaboration – but in mixed reality. Beyond work or school, moments like these will also crop up in our personal lives.

Consumer behaviors have turned time (and our attention spans) into a ready canvas for Virtual Space. With immersive technologies, captive moments present latent opportunities to close information gaps and capture our attention.

Today’s compulsion for many of us to check our smartphones every five minutes will transmute into a frictionless path to virtual interactions. Just as we no longer “go online” on PCs, smart glasses will drive ubiquitous mixed-reality experiences.

So how far off might we be, really, from an expansive virtual universe such as Ready Player One’s “OASIS”?

As the book and Steven Spielberg’s film both envision, AI-driven “journey experience services” will suggest – like Pandora or Spotify do today with music – the perfect “genome” of the things you see, interact with, decide and experience during your journeys of personal time, as well as those that wrap around work and work processes. (Understanding where, when and how that happens is explored in our report “Augmenting the Reality of Everything.”)

Included will be the setting, information, tone, characters, suggested things or experiences to buy, side-destinations to take, friends to include and more.

You will be – most simply, "virtually" and literally – in another world.