This video is a perfect summary of the state of mobile and the web. As 'cryowaffle said, it's pretty much what we have today, without the AR . That's why I think the whole ecosystem around web and mobile technologies is sick and need to be fought against. We need less ads, less pseudoproducts that in fact are just toys, less routing everything through third-party clouds.
 - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=11754750
Anything in between is likely moot: at the very least, strong AI has the ability to end all jobs —overnight in the case of desk jobs. Ads and ad blocking are meaningless in comparison: what is the significance markets, money, and labour when the machines do all the work?
Funny thing is, it's not like AI is going to make a landing here from outer space. It's not some external factor that we don't control. It's us who are building it. Any possible outcome could be avoided if we just stop working on it.
I know this is not going to happen, but I feel this is the kind of obvious thing that ought to be stated once in a while.
There's also another kind of obvious thing that ought to be stated every once in a while: that at this scale, we don't control shit.
There is no one on this planet who could ban AI research. Not one person, not one organization. What humanity as a whole is working on is determined mostly by factors like economic incentives and existing technology landscape - both of them now push us towards building more and more intelligent software. To stop that, you'd have to nuke the whole planet back to stone age.
Except we live in a world where selfish persons will and do use any advantage to get ahead, with little care for side effects so long as they get ahead. For every funded attempt at creating and controlling stronger ai that gets shut down because it's deemed unwieldy, others will not be so cautious. The cat will get out of the bag if we're ever able to create one.
Question: do you feel like anyone controls the behavior of any given international company? Or does the company control the people? These lines aren't so clear imho, just as it won't be clear as we give more and more power to intelligent computer systems.
Since the latter is so much more likely than the former, and since we're probably biased towards the former -- So long, it's been nice to know you!
But people will always value simplicity and serenity. I don't see this as the future, but rather a very cynical view of the future.
If I want to be "gamified", I'll play the video game I purchased on my gaming machine.
Such a great series of videos. Extremely well done, and horrifying because it seems plausible (even if only a little).
With years of practice, I've metaphorically calloused myself against a lot of these things now. For instance, I'm nearly immune to the stupid "play half a commercial, post link to 'see how it ends'" technique I see every few months. By "immune" I don't mean that I no longer feel the draw, but that it is no longer anywhere near enough for me to actually do anything about it. But it took effort, and I find myself wondering, is there anything else I'm giving up to have that metaphorical callous? What are the consequences of the brain adaptations necessary to function under this constant cognitive assault?
(And I'm not at all sure the answer is easy. "More alienation" or "less empathy" are really snap answers, but at the level of detail I'm interested in, also vacuous. I'd really love to know but probably never will.)
That describes 90% of the internet.
Heck, that describes 90% of social life.
So the tech depicted here is actually less advanced than we what we have today (Hololens etc are all trackerless). Other than having a compact form for glasses this kind of reality is achievable in just a couple more years.
Despite the theme of the video I am looking forward to it. The first decade of having the internet sucked too with geocities design and crazy popups/viruses on every click. But I wouldn't choose an alternate reality where the internet didn't exist at all.
We should be more optimistic that all of these UI issues will be figured out once it actually gets adoption.
The future as nightmare more likely. The theme of the video is how this technology is going to further alienate people rather than facilitate communication. You can already see a contemporary version where people everywhere, faces buried in their devices obsessively txting and no doubt looking up their 'friends' on Facebook. Anything but instigate a conversation with the person sitting next to them. See 'The Congress (2013)' for an interesting variation on the theme. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1821641/
Yeah, and the response to that is "people were always doing that". As if some billions of us weren't around in the 70's, 80's, 90's, and even 00's to see what the real case was, and will be convinced by such bs.
As someone not in this field, I have no idea if the remaining problems are going to take more than another few years to solve but I hope not!
Additionally to that the Hololens is also quite bulky, so it's not like you can sacrifice on the design to create more battery capacity. It already doesn't look like something anyone would want to wear outside.
Even if you improve the battery capacity, increase efficiency of the hardware and software and you still have something you can't really sell anyone as a AR-utopia level device, just on account of that design.
I'd expect it to take at least a decade until you'll see regular people wearing AR glasses regularly as a personal device during their daily life.
Some positive things I took away from this:
- Real-time language translation
- integrating map and directions into your view
- (as you mentioned) clear and evident warnings that you couldn't cross the street
- be able to add more information about products at stores. I know this similar to advertising, but if you're at a grocery store and are able to get more info about products immediately, I see that a plus.
- The fact that you have an HUD for all your apps helps reduce "text-neck" sprain and also allows for ease of walking and and being on your device.
- Fashion. The one person who attacked her, while that part being a negative experience, her body was covered in videos. I can foresee the fashion industry becoming more involved with this tech. (I think Snow Crash dealt with this in the virtual world part of the novel)
If you liked this video I'd highly recommend two episodes of the British series "Black Mirror." Check out "Fifteen Million Merits" and "The Entire History of You."
List of Black Mirror episodes:
Reminds me of all those grand visions of why we need a fridge connected to the internet to automatically order groceries for us.
Such, a breakthrough.
But you know what, I can order groceries just fine. And I can automate that in 20 ways from the web, even without the fridge (especially since grocery shopping is periodic).
How about the future giving me more actual vacation time instead of such "time savings"? Now THAT would be a breakthrough.
In his world there were also tiny cameras everywhere and you could connect to them (for a tiny price) view the feed and any recordings.
New "augmented reality" stuff is super interesting to me because it's basically the means of creating a shared illusion. So, like a drug trip, but more social and controlled. Basically like video games, but way larger in scale and social reach :)
This topic is super interesting to me too. I just don't want it to look like on that video...
I remember seeing that. It was a profoundly disturbing, unsettling experience. It's a good, well-made film, but what it portrayed was really scary.
Would you want to be constantly immersed in a video game with your friends/family? Or even the same social groups? That idea does nothing for me... it's actually a huge turn-off from AR. If I just wanted trippy graphics with friends, I'd go on a shroom camping trip with friends.
In my mind, AR is about automating and building context. It's the first cybernetic, tightly integrating our visual/auditory senses with technology. Video games, re-skinning reality, omnipresent advertising... none of that will surprise me, that's updating current applications to use new technology.
What about new applications? Imagine working on a car engine and hitting a snag, snapping off a seized bolt head for example. AR should recognize that I'm staring at a car engine, grunting in frustration, with elevated heart rate/sweat and other physiological symptoms of stress. The application should use those signals to look at my contact list (integrating their social media context) and suggest calling a mechanically inclined friend for advice. It should know that I hate animated graphics covering my work and simply talk, telling me that John might be able to help out if I buy him some beer. At some point it might even be smart enough to warn me against snapping the bolt head in the first place..
Or imagine project management style stuff. AR should know I'm 24 minutes away from my next meeting by foot and tell me to start walking (offering to reserve a taxi at the same time). Once I start walking, AR should automatically start giving me meeting prep (notes I prepared beforehand, meeting invite body, who's on the meeting invite list, etc). It should also show me a line that will take me all the way to the meeting room, and highlight the right button on any elevators on the way.
Imagine I'm painting a large canvas piece. Instead of lugging around a handful of sketches, putting them away and taking them out every time I work on the piece, AR can display (or even overlay) hundreds of sketches (letting me position them as I see fit). It can remind me that a particular part of the canvas is still wet, or when I can start painting over a section. Even better, it could show me contextual paint reviews when I'm at the shop... recommending certain brands because the colors dry true, or any number of personally relevant metrics (pulled from past internet search history).
Augmented reality: Adding to reality.
Virtual reality: Replacing reality.
I guess I'm imagining a shared super-reality, not an alternative reality, which I didn't make clear.
You could use these objects for design, planning, entertainment, expression... Maybe holographic programming. And all of it in the context of shared visualization.
I think every day about how to build these capabilities, without them becoming overwhelming like you see in the video.
Everything from how to interface (gesture actually sucks: non-haptic, unnatural), to how to serve contextual data using natural visual input without relying on engineered visual markers (QR codes etc...).
We have come a long way from the infrastructure perspective (mobile visual mapping and re-localization) and are really looking forward to having better visual interfaces - though they are years away from becoming mainstream.
One other thing that nobody has commented on, that is critical to these systems working is having content. 3D content is an order of magnitude harder to build than 2D content, so that is also a big focus of ours.
Not really. It requires a different process and a different training regimen. ZBrush makes 3D content creation easy enough that you can be done with the dog model in the video in a matter of minutes, but only if you're trained with ZBrush.
Only proving my point - but not really taking it far enough. If I asked the average designer to give me an image of a dog for my website/app etc... they could do it incredibly easy. Either get a dog and take a picture with a regular camera, maybe crop and edit or find/edit many of the ones you see now in well known software.
If I asked that same group to make me a 3D model of a dog it would be literally orders of magnitude more complex. Knowing a 3D interface takes quite a bit of time. Building the model, especially if you want any kind of accuracy, even moreso.
There are different types of artists. A 3D artist isn't the same as a 2D artist, which isn't the same as a designer.
It wouldn't make sense to ask a devop to write you a website, then claim that webdev was an order of magnitude more difficult than devops.
Again, this is my point. The number of 3D content developers is staggeringly low for the amount of content that needs to be created. Irrespective of that, for comparable skill levels the time it takes to produce 3D content again dwarfs that of 2D content - often cause you need a lot of structured 2D content for it to be shaded and texture mapped/baked correctly.
In my experience, the skill levels can't be compared like that. A 3D artist is a difference in kind from a 2D artist.
It's not nearly as difficult to create 3D content as you're suggesting, though.
you need a lot of structured 2D content for it to be shaded and texture mapped/baked correctly.
Actually, this isn't how ZBrush works. You can paint your model in whatever fashion you want. There's no structure needed, and no baking process. The final step is to convert the high-res painted model into a low-res exportable version, which is largely an automatic process.
Your points appear to be (a) many more people are trained in Photoshop than ZBrush, and (b) ZBrush isn't Photoshop. That's true.
Not to go all "appeal to expert" here but I've been 3D modeling since the mid-90s. My company is deep into 3D rendering, scanning and content generation. Creating something in 3D is trivial. Creating something that looks like something with accurate scale, correct UV mapping and polygon normalizing is a highly technical skill which increases in difficulty logistically.
It takes our expert modeling team at the absolute fastest, 1 hour to build a single 3D model of a small 5 foot long sofa, without baked textures or high quality detail. Compare that to lighting and taking a photograph of the same sofa in a studio. Actually this is an interesting comparison because we have worked so heavily on this particular problem.
I know how Z-Brush works. All I can say is that it is not how you create content for VR/AR - it's not high enough precision and it's really only suited for "organic" 3D modeling. Characters? Sure. Environments, engineered objects, interfaces? Absolutely not.
No the point is, "content" as generated today - by your average Joe in the form of 2D images and text, or by retailers/designers in the form of 2D product pictures, is trivial to produce and takes marginal skill. The content of AR is 3D. Your average Joe cant produce it at all, most retailers/designers have no clue how they would start, and those who do know can't find enough 3D modelers to keep up with demand.
I appreciate how much thought and effort you've put into your replies. It's reciprocated. But I think at this point we should agree to disagree.
Ben is the outlier of outliers - the guy is a design genius and worked years at Weta.
Best of luck.
Two pieces this was reminiscent of and I'd suggest, if you're interested, are:
especially Series 1 Episode 2 "Fifteen Million Merits"
Terry Gilliam's Zero Theorem
> All we know is fake fodder and buying shit. That's how we speak to each other, how we express ourselves, is buying shit. What, I have a dream? The peak of our dreams is a new app for our Dopple, it doesn't exist! It's not even there! We buy shit that's not even there. Show us something real and free and beautiful. You couldn't. Yeah? It'd break us. We're too numb for it.
Dukkha, that is, the existential anguish (Sisiphyus) is present, whether technology is sophisticated enough or not. Technology cannot address dukkha.
It also resembled some of the psychedelic experiences I had, yet not quite -- for example, the way colors overlay the streets and grocery store aisle is close, and yet, the sense that the symbols overlaying are conscious, sentient, and alive is missing. The way you move through space and have the visual and audio overlay change the space around you reminds me of some of the way journeying happens. It is also interesting how, when the devices rebooted and the colors of the world bled out, gives the same kind of contrast that some people feel when their initial spiritual awakening experience fades. Lastly, in a psychedelic experience, there is a connection between the inner experience and the outer experience; this set of technology does not give that sense.
In Hyper-Reality, it's showing an experience where mainstream access to VR and AR gives mainstream access to some of the psychedelic experiences, and what that says about our civilization, and what's coming in the future. When I read the Wikipedia entry for "Enter the Void" does not seem as interesting to me.
* I do watch films like this. My point though isn't that Hyper Reality resembles a psychedelic experience, but that it gives us a glimpse of the future where pseudo-psychedelic consciousness shift is available in the mainstream, and part of the fabric of every day experience.
It's an extremely visual film -- as an experience it's nothing like its Wikipedia entry :)
Out of curiosity, what's the take on reincarnation? I saw it draws some ideas from the Tibetan Book of the Dead. Is the take it has something that is a twist on those ideas, or is it more that it's bringing the "Tibetan Book of the Dead" out in a visual display that's interesting?
I'll have to check out Vistas of Infinity :)
Check out the book, "Vistas of Infinity" sometime.
(I mean, obviously that doesn't say anything about whether it'll happen or not, but I really don't want this to happen. It looks like an incredibly scary and above all vapid state to be in.)
EDIT: Btw, wasn't this posted a few days ago? Can't find it, but I'm pretty sure I saw this around here. (Then again, maybe I saw it on reddit.)
About the amount of information - humans are good at tuning things out. Banner blindness, and all. But what really bothers me about that vision is the amount of bullshit that's pushed on people. All forms of interruptions trying to make you buy more stuff or interact with some useless crap (also known nowadays as "user engagement"). AR could be an awesome tools. Maybe it will be - if we can keep the people who ruined the mobile and the web out of it. I don't see how to do it though, especially if we're talking commercial devices for non-tech people.
As a counterbalance, here's a video from 7 years ago, which makes me appreciate the idea of AR / VR on many different levels: https://vimeo.com/3365942.
Yes, exactly. What really struck/scared me was how this kind of AR would really prevent me from concentrating on anything for more than 1 second at a time.
I'm sure commercial interests would want this type of thing, but presumably they'll need some humans to actually pay attention to things so that they actually have some pool of people to recruit programmers from... but maybe they aren't thinking that far ahead. Maybe the 'dead end' for humanity will just be some type of AR where there's no way out because there's nobody outside AR enough to do anything else than just sit there in rapt attention. Hmmm... maybe I just had an idea for a dystopian sci-fi novel.
 Yeah, somebody must have thought of this before.
EDIT: Just grammar and things. Plus, I discovered that I actually really like the word 'actual'.
I imagine dropping someone from the year 1916 here today would generate a similar reaction.
Still lowering our IQ by a good 5-10 points.
 Let me just be clear that I don't mean that in a derogatory manner. I'm not even a layman when it comes to autism, but I've read a couple of well-regarded books (by professionals in the field) and they describe it (among other things) as being in a state of constant sensory overload where e.g. repetitive actions become a sort of coping mechanism to deal with the overload.
This is faithful to Conan Doyle's stories, where his Holmes is always many steps ahead of the normals, and resorts to recreational drugs to deal with something like boredom from lack of stimulation.
In another TV adaptation of the Holmes stories, "House, MD", the main character shares a similar frustration with having to live among people who are merely highly intelligent.
Anyway, I'm off for the night, so I'll just leave this marvel of Sherlockia: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x5JEJiiSZCM
This was my general reaction to shopping malls when I was a child and teenager.
Perhaps it's the generation gap - even though I love software technologies and do it for a living, looking at the younger generation in the family multitask across several applications while talking on the phone and watching TV makes me wonder if there's more here than just trading depth coverage for breadth coverage. I wonder whether they've actually extended and adapted to handling the current of information that would overwhelm me.
I think a bunch of folks have submitted this one (yep, click past on article).
Lost Memories https://vimeo.com/49425975 and its sequel https://vimeo.com/152889154 are also pretty good and focus a bit more on the human side.
Speaking of which, one of the best features I could imagine for full-field-of-view AR would be an ad blocker for physical world.
Now I keep doing it because I hate people. I hate human interaction. I hate the shitty music and adverts I hear in grocery stores. I prefer the self checkout and I can usually pack my bags better anyway.
There's an interesting mechanic there. The person is seen modifying the advertising intensity while something to do with money comes up on the UI. It looks like you get paid to sit in crazy ad land, use the "service" for free with less (but still ridiculous) ads, and presumably, you'd pay for ad-free.
Reminds me of this episode of Black Mirror (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fifteen_Million_Merits) that takes place in the future. In your room there are ads everywhere, and if you're not looking it stops and yells at you. To not see them you have to pay money.
(Although it's much easier to not look at my devices, than to not look at my apartment's walls.)
This world seems one where the self is constructed mostly from the gamified narratives of the AR system, whose creation mechanism is not revealed, but appears to lie completely beyond the reach of its consumers. Here there are, I think, hints of a free, wildly competitive market not only of goods and services, but most importantly of identities.
If something like this is in reach of our (imminent) technology, I hope we have the sense to avoid it becoming a reality.
Seriously though. People are too lazy to use their hands to navigate an invisible interface. It's a lot more work than using a mouse and keyboard.
And anyway, this type of invisible interface makes you look dumb (http://dilbert.com/strip/1994-10-12).
(Btw, I agree that this was incredibly creative, imaginative and well-done. It's just really really scary.)
Even if we solve the design issues, we remain sequestered in a simulation where there seems to be no respite. Guess I'm a sucker for authenticiy, whatever that still means.
Congrats to the filmmaker here for dramatizing extreme virtuality with nuanced storytelling.
The video is portraying augmented reality (as satire about current marketing practices and corporate attempts to minmax everything). If I understand Baudrillard correctly, Disneyland or "reality" TV are hyperreal. To be hyperreal, wouldn't you would have to believe all the augmented ads/etc in the video were reality?
Recently I read a Scientific American article that suggested there may be a link between navigational ability and memory. If that's true, then push to "Always On" GPS/Navigational Support could have deleterious effects on our capacity for memory (this was one idea in the article)