Long before mainstream media latched onto the metaverse, companies like Magic LEAP, Invidia, and Huawei were already trying to build it. In fact, it could have been called the Magicverse, the Omniverse, or the Cyberverse. Others conceptualized it as Planet-Scale AR, the AR Cloud, and the Mirrorworld. Mark Zuckerberg, the name now most closely associated with the metaverse, characterized it as “the embodied internet.”
The ideas dovetail with spatial computing, aka the 3D Web, or the merger of computer-generated 3D VR with AR as envisioned by VFX pioneers like John Gaeta. Cultural historians and sci-fi buffs will point out that the term metaverse was coined in 1992 by Neal Stephenson in the novel Snow Crash before being given its popular makeover in the book and movie Ready Player One.