Internet Universe in 3D
When I was trying out Alien Arena 2007 with all its impressive graphical effects yesterday a weird idea came to my mind about a "game", that is, a program which would be like a 3D client to the internet as a whole through which you could walk or fly through in various forms. This is not like second life or any other existing virtual world. This is different. It would be just an impressive 3D front end to the internet, its protocols and traffic that goes through them and also its content.
For example, when you enter this 3D world you may find yourself in a rather blank room with one door. The room you are in is actually a representation of localhost, where you are right now. Once you pass through the doors you connect to something other than localhost. As you are connecting to that there is an impressive effect of traveling through the universe of billions of web sites until you reach the one whose coordinates (IP address or domain name) you entered.
OR, instead of a room it could be done this way. We could have localhost be our little ship, a small netpod if you will. Because in essence when you connect your computer to the internet you don't really exit it, rather you connect it with the other computer on the internet - in our world this would mean moving our netpod to that other place on the netverse.
So, you have a console in front of you where you say something like "www.nuxified.org" and then when you press an "engage" button you see your netpod accelerating through countless of stars until it finally finds and zooms in on the one which looks like a shining cube presenting the content/design of Nuxified.org's homepage. If you want to browse it you have to beam onboard the cube in a room which has a big wall displaying homepage. You point to a link on the wall (say forums) and a portal opens leading you to the "forums" room. And so on
So a site is a cube, which from afar looks like a star while inside of it there are as many rooms as the site has pages. When you want to leave a site you beam back to your netpod and enter the new coordinates (domain name or IP) and move along there.
However we don't have only www sites on the internet universe. We have IRC, email, newsgroups etc.. Email should be simple, you can either read it on the screen of your netpod or you can actually warp to the mail server star/cube and go in and read it on one of those big walls
IRC server can also be a cube, but when you enter there you have to say which "room" to go in, again opening a portal through which to enter it. In there there are many avatars (not necessarily like in second life, they could be smaller smileys or just colorful "light" avatars) talking with each other. As they type a message it pops up above them or on your screen/HUD...
Anyway, this would be quite a "game". Sometimes the things that impress me about current 3D games is not just the actual action that goes on in there but the exploring of the map and all its contents. For example it is common in current 3D games for you to find yourself in a space ship (you move towards a big window or even a force field and see an asteroid field, or to be on a hovering building in the clouds... So I thought it would be nice to have a representation of the internet as is, but in this exciting yet relaxing 3D form where you can actually look at the internet and relax from the comfort of your netpod.
Say a netpod could just travel through the netverse randomly letting you watch all the stars go by knowing that they are each a web site with their own world in it. And at any time you can just pick one and order the netpod to take you there - hence stumbling on a new web site (talk about stumpleupon in 3D!)
Oh and you could even see other netpods warping by you? Who would they be? Well.. as you go near a star it has its visitors, those netpods would represent people going to and from it. Also as you pass near a router it could be represented as a portal, a wormhole, and you can see other netpods passing in and out of it..
What do you people think? I know this is full of imagination and it's quite far off, but it's an idea.. who knows maybe someone's working on something similar.
Edit: When I think of it, all of the above could be only a start. This world would eventually evolve to be the universal client to all other internet 3D worlds. Say when you warp with your netpod to s SecondLife star and enter there, instead of the usual rooms you would find yourself in the second life world. Same with other existing and future 3D worlds.