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SpatialSoft - Understanding Virtual Expansion - A Review of John Palmer's "Spatial Development"

Updated: Sep 8, 2021

"A successful man is the one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him."

The words of the late, great 20th-century American Newscaster, David Brinkley, resonate with the need for individuals to be adaptable and flexible in the wake of the new, emergent, and unfamiliar. Similarly, in John Palmer's piece, "Spatial Software," Palmer, alongside editors Toby Shorin, Kara Kittel, and Édouard Urcades, underscores the sprawling appeal of technological development, particularly concerning spatial software, the bedrock of the spatial user interface.

Just as early investors in emergent, promising technology have been awarded principal appreciation compounding several times over, so too do early adopters of technology. A classic case of early technology adopters is Jack Dorsey, Twitter CEO, who set the stage for this space in 2006. Reserving the user handle @Jack, and auctioning his (and likewise his platform's) first-ever tweet as an NFT (Non-Fungible Token) demonstrate the exclusivity and influence early adopters have over the spatial platform in which they gather and subsequently come to develop.

Likewise, regarding spatial software, Palmer outlines bodies and objects as movement-capable subsets of a world, itself within an interface. In turn, this interface exists amongst movement-capable bodies and elements, all of which fall within the so-called "real world." To envision this, imagine a video game character and an object it uses within an in-game world, all of which is user-controlled, via a console, again in the so-called "real world."

Moreover, in our new, post-pandemic reality, with a heightened institutional and entrepreneurial appetite for real estate purchase, amongst cryptocurrency and other assets, financial literacy and wealth preservation have been once again brought to the forefront of popular zeitgeist. Undoubtedly, however, the amount of earth's crust used for real estate cannot increase, just as the supply cap of Bitcoin is fast approaching 21,000,000.

Therefore, the response to the ever-increasing demand for traditional real estate and so-called "digital real estate" like Bitcoin is a vertical expansion upon the existing platform; in the same spirit for physical real estate, development upon the foundation may likewise be vertical expansion. Analogous to this "real world" phenomenon is a software platform like the Ethereum Network, hosting an ever-increasing number of tokens are emerging, each of which brings the prospect of novel utility and promise to future, would-be investors.

Like all ideas, if software platforms and the respective cryptocurrencies they host can demonstrate promise and utility, they are awarded more of a network effect than those which cannot. While the specifics of spatial software's emergent expansion are still in the works, what is certain, however, is the new dimension of spatial development will build upon existing platforms to enable intra-platform experiences.

Overall, the assessment of ongoing technological development by Palmer et al. is just as precise as accurate. In our Social Darwinian world, the movers and the shakers of tomorrow are the bold, innovative risk-takers of today.

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