Imagine a virtual world where you can buy land and create an actual business on that land.
In this virtual world, you’ll find all the same things as in the analog world around you. Homes, storefronts, casinos, music halls, art galleries, etc. You would find all that but without any bureaucracy or middle man. In essence, that is Decentraland.
Found on the Ethereum blockchain, the creators of Decentraland have set up a metaverse where users can buy plots of virtual land. What they do on that land is completely up to them.
How does Decentraland work?
A next generation social media platform, Decentraland is very similar to the game Second Life, but with some major differences.
Similar to Second Life, users operate in a virtual world and interact with other avatars. It’s mainly for fun, but money can be made as they have their own economy.
Here is where the differences begin. For one, the application is totally decentralized. Second Life or other metaverses are found on a central server that can be hacked or taken down at a moment’s notice. Certain rules must be followed that can be arbitrary since there is a central authority that makes the rules.
Decentraland, as its name implies, is decentralized as it is on the blockchain and not a central server. The users determine how the metaverse will operate.
The other major difference is how the application actually works. When you buy your land, you can build any type of application you want to on it and can upload things from off the application.
For example, if you are a musician, you can open a music hall that could feature a live stream of your performance. You could charge admission or people could buy your music to download, or both. And you would set up the payment processor yourself.
This is just one example. There are so many ways to use Decentraland.
The way it actually works is you would use Ether to buy MANA, the native coin. With MANA you would buy your land. Since it is on the blockchain there is a smart contract created with a ledger of ownership of the land.
Decentraland is mainly for entrepreneurs, creatives, students or other online communities, but it is really for anybody to use.
Since the MANA can appreciate, it is even ideal for investors to trade that have no desire to actually use the platform.
Technological advances are beginning to happen more rapidly than ever. Finally the promise of virtual reality becoming mainstream and used by the masses is not something that looks far away in the future.
The creators of Decentraland understand that more and more people, and not just gamers, will use VR on an everyday basis and want to be ahead of the curve for when it hits critical mass.
The blockchain technology has enabled this vision in ways that were simply not possible a few years ago. It has the potential to surpass even Facebook and other social media platforms.
Why just share content on a static platform with rules created by a central authority, when you could visit your friends in a virtual world and make your own rules? It’s an intriguing idea that has massive potential, both socially and economically for a lot of people.