Neal Stephenson enters the metaverse with Reallusion at Korea's SBS D Forum

Reallusion's avatar of Neal Stephenson for the SBS D Forum
(Image credit: SBS / Reallusion)

The Seoul Broadcasting System's SBS D Forum is one of South Korea's most important annual forums for discussions on the future of tech. In 2021 it had a special guest speaker: Neal Stephenson, the bestselling author of speculative fiction such as Snow Crash and creator of the terms 'metaverse,' and 'avatar'. Neal would be appearing remotely for his talk and video interview for the D forum from his hotel in San Francisco, but the team at SBS wanted to do something a little bit more special.

Early in October, producer Jun Park contacted the 2D and 3D character creation and animation software developer Reallusion to discuss creating a special experience for the guest speaker. Park wanted to create an animated digital avatar of Neal to deliver the first segment of his appearance.  The D Forum was to take place barely a month after on November 18. Neal was put in touch with Reallusion and the work began. 

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Joe Foley

Joe is a regular freelance journalist and editor at Creative Bloq. He writes news, features and buying guides and keeps track of the best equipment and software for creatives, from video editing programs to monitors and accessories. A veteran news writer and photographer, he now works as a project manager at the London and Buenos Aires-based design, production and branding agency Hermana Creatives. There he manages a team of designers, photographers and video editors who specialise in producing visual content and design assets for the hospitality sector. He also dances Argentine tango.