On July 21, 1969, Neil Armstrong became the first human to set foot on the moon, uttering the famous words, “One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind!” Taking your first steps in the Metaverse feels a bit like landing on an alien planet. At the same time, they open up unprecedented possibilities for the future of how we work and live. Introductory courses are booming, in which the Metaverse is explored under the guidance of a Metaverse evangelist – as people call themselves who know how to get others excited about this new technology. Switzerland is a leader in the Metaverse space and is at the forefront of innovation there. Microsoft, Meta, Google, Disney Research and Magic Leap have opened offices or research laboratories in Switzerland and are investing huge amounts of money in the future metaverse, the internet of the future. But how do you get into the Metaverse? Metaverse introductory courses are trending.
The further training opportunities are also flourishing: In addition to some universities, many universities also offer courses in AR (Augmented Reality), VR (Virtual Reality) and MR (Mixed Reality), including the FFHS at the Gleisarena site in Zurich, the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences, the Graubünden University of Applied Sciences and the Kalaidos Technical School. However, if you want to get into the Metaverse with hands-on guidance, you can book a half-day Metaverse introductory course as offered by Weblaw Academy as part of their Metaverse classes.
Together with the customer in Vienna, who was working at home at the time, a work meeting with German colleagues takes place. What sounds like science fiction is practiced every day in Switzerland in Metaverse courses. Office and meetings can be simulated from home thanks to VR – and take place in a mountain landscape or in a beach pavilion. The prerequisite is wireless VR glasses such as ‘Meta Quest Pro’ and internet access. It is also advisable to take the first steps under the guidance of an experienced Metaverse user. The immediate benefit of what has been learned is then worked out individually with each participant. “The Metaverse is hard to put into words. It has to be experienced and then ideas bubble up about what is suddenly possible,” says digital pioneer Sarah Montani, who wrote the course program. “Thanks to the avatars, we in the Metaverse feel like we’re in the same room together, even though we’re spatially separated. We experience the students as very involved, curious and, above all, intuitively explore the possibilities of the virtual meeting room,” says Martin V. Sampedrano Gonzalez, responsible for the Metaverse courses. “After the first steps in the Metaverse, it feels very natural for most participants. By comparison, virtual meetings don’t have the same impact as face-to-face meetings. Meetings in the Metaverse should fix this weakness in the future.”
What do the participants report?
Participants indicate that the resolution of the VR monitors is still too low to work with the VR glasses for a long time. Most have fun and develop a sense of teamwork with the other students, whom they get to know as avatars. Many can even imagine that social contacts can be enhanced by the metaverse. This coincides with the conclusions of a comprehensive study on hybrid work, “Values of the Metaverse: Hybrid Work in Virtual Encounter Spaces”.
“Anyone who maintains a website today will be in the Metaverse in the future,” predicts Sarah Montani. It is therefore important to deal with the new technologies.
The next Weblaw Academy public Metaverse introductory courses will take place in small groups on December 9, 2022 and January 20, 2023 at the Weblaw Campus Zurich @ FFHS Gleisarena.
The current course schedule of the Weblaw Metaverse Lessons can be found at: www.weblaw.ch/metaverse