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Memory Maker

Preparation for Virtual Reality
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The sort of technology that could allow Star-Trek like holodecks is many years away, but what's to stop us preparing for that day today? In years to come when we can artificially reproduce a perfect moment from our youth (in whatever shape genuine virtual reality eventually takes) our memories may not be up to the task of accurately recreating the setting.

Personally, my perfect holodeck program would recreate the pier at St Kilda near Melbourne at sunrise, but already my 6-year old recollection of that moment is beginning to fade. The sound of the seabirds circling overhead, the feeling of the breeze and the taste of the salty air has given way to the years.

The idea

A digital video recorder that includes a number of sensors to create an accurate record of local conditions at the time of recording. While the user records a 360 degree panning shot of the area the recorder takes readings of wind speed and direction, temperature and a sample of the air (which is sealed in an airtight cavity).

This data can then be uploaded, analysed and stored in preparation for the day when technology has caught up with our imagination, and your perfect moment can be accurately reproduced in virtual reality down to the very smell of the air.

sambwiches, Oct 09 2008

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       What if my perfect moment involves a lot of touching? Little nanobots to scavence a 10m radius for textured interfaces? Too advanced? Then the fabric of the couch where I sat when she walked by will forever elude posterity. Maybe nifty stereoscopic records to deduce the texture of my surroundings? This texture thing is important, you see.
daseva, Oct 09 2008

       Sure, but I'm looking purely at technology that's available today to sync with technology that may be available tomorrow. If I start throwing texture-sensitive nanobots in there I risk being set upon by an old timer with a grudge and a length of pipe.   

       Looking purely at technology that's available now you could, perhaps, include visual recognition software in the video recorder that could match the shape of, say, a particular sofa with the contents of a database of catalogues, recreating the feel of the fabric and stuffing.
sambwiches, Oct 10 2008

       Fair enough, a good guess goes a long way. In this case, though, do you even need the air sample? Can't we deduce the air quality based on the captured images??
daseva, Oct 10 2008

       Ocean content changes between then and now will affect the scents. Better take water, sand, and air samples.   

       Changes is available food supplies will affect the seagull's digestive tracts. Better take some slice samples as well.
normzone, Oct 10 2008

       Computer games are already destroying our youth. Imagine what holo-decks would do to our society. Don't get me wrong the idea is creative and showing foresight, but not enough, in my opinion.   

MikeD, Oct 10 2008


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