As you know, I love technology, but I’m also sometimes skeptical of its net utility, because it so often imposes burdens to match its benefits.
So I get really excited when I hear about technology that simply helps us experience something new. No device to carry around, no batteries to charge, no software to learn — just a novel way of looking at the world.
Keyhole, the program that lets you zoom in on your neighborhood via satellite imagery, is one example. Here’s another I just found:
Accenture Technology’s lab in France is working on a mirror that reflects your future self.
In brief: Cameras watch you during the day and keep track of how much time you spend on the couch or in front of the fridge. Then, a computer uses the implicit lifestyle information to extrapolate your mirror image forward five years — showing a fatter face, less hair, sallow cheeks, whatever.
Here’s the rationale:
“Helping people visualise the long-term outcomes of their behaviour is an effective way to motivate change” […]
The problem, of course, is that no one will ever buy the ugly-mirror.
But I could totally see this being a great science museum exhibit. You’d tap out answers to a quick lifestyle survey, then step into a private viewing chamber to see your future. It’d be creepy, and cool.
Link from we make money not art.