Thursday, December 12, 2019

Everyman's Ontological-Hysteric Reality

Images are photoshopped and digitized. Sci Fi epics like Star Wars, Star Trek and most recently Interstellar create the equivalent of virtual reality universes while computerized environments like Second Life present alternate universes. If paper currency is a form of abstraction from say gold, cryptocurrencies take this idea one step further. The idea of artificially created voice systems like Siri taking on a life of thie own is dramatized in Spike Jonze’s Her. The question is not alienation and separation but degree. Activities not mitigated by technology having actual flesh and blood conversations are becoming increasing anomalies in a world where you not only go to simulated voices on Google maps for direction but prefer its tone to that of the significant other who’s likely to say something far less neutral than “route recalculating” when you’ve made a wrong turn. Will there come a time when it’s possible to go on dating sites which offer relationships with artificial intelligences? Will the body itself be dispensed with? Who needs the problems of real relationships when an implant can totally replicate experience? What form of sex could be safer than an idea? And forget about stents, clogged arteries and cholesterol when hunger is satiated in the mind by a disembodied consciousness. Richard Foreman coined the term Ontological-HystericTheater. Little did he know that it might some day become a reality.

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