Monday, August 4, 2008

On Gaming and Virtual Worlds

The dock of the bay...Image by TonyƧ via FlickrOnline gaming, whether Casino, Role-playing/MMORPG, Fantasy Sports, or other, is starting to become a significant part of the lives of an increasing number of people. Virtual worlds of all types provide a quick and engulfing escape from tedious, day-to-day routine that many perceive their "real" worlds to be.

As with any experience, I think that there are both positives and negatives associated with online gaming and role-playing. On the good side, you will have the opportunity to develop new skills and meet people from different cultures with different viewpoints and perspectives without leaving the comfort of your nest. On the other hand, your level of physical activity will go down, and it will be easy to get "lost" in there.

Anyway, since this blog is about predictions, here are some possibilities for the future of Gaming and Virtual Worlds:

+ Businesses will start offering services in Virtual Worlds. I mean real-world businesses here. For example, If you want to learn French, enter our world and we will help you... for a real-world fee.

- The DSM5 will start to include a disorder having to do with displaced reality resulting from people believing events occuring in a Virtual World to be real.

+ We will develop a vocabulary for differentiating real-world and virtual-world events.

- Virtual world currencies will be listed on the foreign currency exchange, and will be legally traded as any other currency.

+ Some people will be able to make a sustainable living entirely in the virtual-world.

- Some virtual-world crimes will be taken seriously. Some virtual roles will be actual real-world law enforcement entities. This will necessitate laws and lawyers in the virtual-world. At least one university will develop and offer a curriculum in virtual-world law.

+ The real-world will benefit from some inventions conceived-of and developed in a virtual-world.

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