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Feb 15, 2023

Mitch and Blake discuss the recurring industry obsession with the idea of virtual reality, beginning in the mid-1980s. Mitch recounts a story about his encounter with VPL and the weird world of digital artists and promoters in the early days of personal computing. They look at the second failed wave of VR investment in the 1990s and the importance of Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash. Mitch talks about how Linden Lab's Second Life anticipated many of the ideas of the modern metaverse. They then look at the Oculus, and Facebook's decade-long failure to generate momentum behind a new wave of virtual reality, and what Apple's entry into the market may mean. They conclude with a look at the idea of the metaverse and its challenges.

Links and Show Notes:

Mondo 2000 magazine

Mark Pauline - Survival Research Labs

Neuromancer (William Gibson, 1984)

“Spawn of Atari” (Wired Magazine)


“Murder She Wrote” VR Episode

Hasbro’s Toaster VR Project

Snow Crash (Neal Stephenson, 1993)

Ready Player One (Ernest Cline, 2011)

Beat Saber

The Metaverse (Matthew Ball, 2022)

Raph Koster’s “real talk about a real metaverse”