Hack Your Reality The Virtual Way
Our brains create the world in which we live, both from direct perception and from our memories. One of the most important capacities that we have is the ability to distinguish memories of events that actually happened, as opposed to other thoughts and feelings.
Ann Schlosser, an assistant professor of marketing at the University of Washington, thinks she has found a way to hack your internal reality - what you believe you remember - by using virtual reality displays.
She tested how well people used a camera after learning its functions in two different ways: through text and still photos, and through interactive virtual renditions of the camera. She found that virtual experiences did improve the subjects memories of the camera's functions.
However, it also increased "false memories" - more people believed it could do things that it couldn't do. Professor Schlosser states:
"Although object interactivity may improve memory of associations compared to static pictures and text, it may lead to the creation of vivid internally-generated recollections that pose as memories... [emphasis added]
I'm always interested in how modern science is bringing us closer to being able to purchase extra-factual memories, as detailed in Philip K. Dick's 1966 short story We Can Remember It For You Wholesale.
The benefits of learning via virtual experience may come with costs: the ease of generating mental images may create later confusion regarding whether a retrieved mental image was perceived or imagined."
"Is an extra-factual memory that convincing?" Quail asked.
"More than the real thing, sir...our analysis of true-mem systems - authentic recollections of major events in a person's life - shows that a variety of details are very quickly lost..."
(Read more about extra-factual memories)
This story is, of course, the basis for the movie Total Recall, starring the governor of California, Arnold Schwartzenegger.
If you're looking forward to extra-factual memories as much as I am, you'll enjoy these stories:
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 12/6/2006)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )
Related News Stories -
Lumo Projector Turns Kids Rooms Into Bradbury's Veldt
'The walls began to purr and recede... and presently an African veldt appeared...'- Ray Bradbury, 1951.
Hologram Protest World's First
'Their bodies were in their dwelling cells, but their telucid images filled the hall.'- RF Starzl, 1931.
Norlin Shoe Drone Robot UAV In-Store Delivery Thing
'Robot-salesmen were everywhere, gesturing, pleading, shrilling.'- Philip K Dick, 1954.
Brand Killer Helmet Blocks Real-Life Ads
'Some merely held the holos [ads] at arm's length.'- John Varley, 1977.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Hackers Can Take Control Of Cars From Anywhere In The World
'The car faltered as the external command came to brake...'
Armed Drone Opens Fire
'Each a television eye and a sonic stunner...'
Robotic Exoskeleton Releases Man From Wheelchair
'This man was standing on two corrugated-soled titanium footplates...'
Oh, Just Let Robots Run Airports
I'd like a friendly robot to help me at airports.
How Smart Should AI's Be Allowed To Get?
'Every AI ever built has an electromagnetic shotgun wired to its forehead'
NASA Misses $5Trillion Funding Boost
'This must be a golden planet—this little asteroid.'
Kuwait Creates Mandatory DNA Database For Citizens
And who has the largest DNA database on its citizens?
Please, Please Let There Be Regenerated Teeth
Google AI 'Deep Dreams' Kubrick's 2001
'I was only trying to do what I thought best....'
The BLITAB: First Tactile Tablet for Blind People
Absolutely amazing development - now blind people can read the web!
Why, Oh Why, Must We Develop Robots That Run Faster Than I Do?
'The legs are long, curled way up to deliver power, like a cheetah's.'
Golf Robot Putts Out
'The robot solemnly hit a ball against the wall, picked it up and teed it, hit it again, over and again...'
Computer Finds Cancer Doctors Miss
The computer will see you now.
Would Robot Taxis Ease Carbon Emissions?
'He emerged and flagged down a robot taxi...'
Brainwaves As Biometric Identification
'The doors of Mr. Lars, Incorporated, shut, tuned as they were to his own cephalic pattern.'
What-If Machine Concocts Creative Premises
'Books were just a commodity that had to be produced, like jam or bootlaces.'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories