NVIDIA chips and software have a key role in the building of the metaverse and many games. We outline the latest announcements from NVIDIA which can have a great impact on the future of our virtual worlds.
At the SIGGRAPH 2022 conference that brought together the world’s largest gathering of Graphics experts, on August 9, 2022, NVIDIA announced a series of software innovations for computer graphics, as well as technology innovations that bring the metaverse, AI and robots closer together more than ever before.
It unveiled updates to NVIDIA Omniverse, a platform for 3D design collaboration and world simulation. A host of updates including new features and improvements to various applications that will help 3D artists build virtual worlds, digital twins and avatars for the metaverse!
Five NVIDIA speakers made presentations announcing:
- NeuralVBD: A next generation of the OpenVBD open-source library for sparse volume data. This advances computer graphics generation capabilities for metaverse applications,
- NVIDIA Omniverse Avatar Cloud Engine (ACE): A new platform for creating avatars /AI powered virtual assistants.
- Plans to enhance the open-source Universal Scene Description (USD) format, which is the language of the metaverse, to further enable metaverse applications.
- Major extensions to NVIDIA Omniverse, the computing platform for creating virtual worlds and digital twins.
- Tools to supercharge graphics workflows with machine learning.
“The announcements we made today further advance the metaverse, a new computing platform with new programming models, new architectures and new standards,” said Jensen Huang, founder, and CEO of NVIDIA,
Metaverse applications are already here, said Huang pointing to consumers trying out virtual 3D products with augmented reality, telcos creating digital twins of their radio networks to optimize and deploy radio towers, and companies creating digital twins of warehouses and factories to optimize their layout and logistics.
The Role of Neural graphics
“3D content is especially critical for the Metaverse as we need to put stuff in the virtual world,” Sanja Fidler, VP of AI research at Nvidia said in a press briefing. “We believe that AI is existential for 3D content creation, especially for the metaverse.”
Computer graphics are no longer simply rendered images, they can be much more with the concept of neural graphics.
Fidler explained that neural graphics aim to insert AI capabilities into various parts of the graphics pipeline. The addition of AI can accelerate graphics in any number of different types of applications including gaming, digital twins and the metaverse.
Welcoming the Avatars
The metaverse will come alive with virtual assistants, avatars we interact with as naturally as talking to another person. They’ll work in digital factories, play in online games and provide customer service for e-tailers.
Rev Lebaredian, VP of Omniverse and simulation technology at Nvidia explained that creating the metaverse is the core technology needed to represent all the things inside the metaverse. For Nvidia, that technology is the open-source Universal Scene Description (USD) technology, originally developed by the animation studio Pixar. Nvidia’s Omniverse platform is built on top of USD.
At SIGGRAPH 2022, Nvidia announced its plans for extending USD, which includes new compatibility suites with graphics tools as well as tools to help users learn how to use USD.
Libaredian said that Avatars and chatbots to date, haven’t been particularly lifelike, but that could soon change thanks to the new Nvidia Avatar Engine.
He also explained that the Avatar Cloud Engine (ACE) is a framework with the core technologies necessary to create avatars. The avatars are robots that are driven by artificial intelligence that enables them to converse, perceive and behave inside virtual worlds and the metaverse.
“The metaverse without human-like representations or artificial intelligence inside it will be a very dull and sad place,” Lebaredian said. “We are providing the toolkit of technologies necessary to construct avatars of different forms so that others can take these technologies and build their specific ideas around what avatars should look, feel and behave like in those worlds.”
Hold on tight to your chair dear reader, lest you get lost in the Metavers…..