Here’s the demo:
OK, so this is cooler than I expected (though the Second Life-meets-XBox Live thing was essentially correct): a fairly clean, sane 3D environment for socializing, multi-player matchmaking, and sharing media. All to a chill-out ambient soundtrack, narrated by some chick with an anglo-australian accent.
For What It’s Worth: I still think the idea that a 3D interface is a useful way to have these kinds of transactions is a ludicrous artifact of the early Web, informed by way too many rereadings of a very good book called Snow Crash. 2D is the future: adding that extra dimension just layers on a whole extra heap of graphic intensiveness and kludginess and imprecision that nobody needs. Even Stephenson’s Metaverse fudged this — I don’t think he ever clearly explained the control scheme that allowed people to talk and move and transfer data and jump around and swordfight.
It certainly wasn’t mouse-and-keyboard. Though maybe Stephenson never dreamed of the majesty that is SIXAXIS…