Virtual Reality June 2024

Virtual reality encompasses anything both visual and digital. If it requires our focused attention and is delivered over the internet, it is virtual reality. The internet and AI together are a new force of nature, converging our nervous system by way of it’s inputs our eyes and ears into virtual reality. Unless we become aware of the effects that near constantly engaging with virtual reality will have, our humanity will become the final frontier for virtual reality to conquer.

Most of people’s time is already spent in virtual reality. We consume entertaining content to and from work, whether podcasts, videos, music or games. We work in virtual reality, collaborating with peers through video calls and workflow software, whether in person together or not. We group chat with friends through dinner, then watch videos in the evening. Each time of the day and human pattern of need has been met with virtual reality technology designed to serve it.

There are several related questions that I have been thinking about as it relates to virtual reality:

I don’t have satisfying answers to these questions. And because Universities have become ineffective at both their original and revised purpose, I don’t think they do either. Virtual reality platforms do not share my incentives or my desire to remain in touch with my humanness. Governments are unable to contain people’s desire to remain in virtual reality - if most of a democratic electorate wants their addictions enabled, it will be so. So I know I must depend on myself, but I have more questions than answers when it comes to countervailing virtual reality.

There are some changes I have made in my life that have not been easy changes in order to spend less of my time in virtual reality and try to connect more with my humanness:

I think that virtual reality is only going to become more compelling and all consuming in the future. The Sci-Fi I most enjoy, from Dune to The Unincorporated Man, imagine futures in which virtual reality no longer exists at all. I share that vision.