More Real is Real: The Transorganic and Hypermorphic in the Einstein’s Brain Project

Symposium:


Session Title:

  • Virtual Illusion

Presentation Title:

  • More Real is Real: The Transorganic and Hypermorphic in the Einstein’s Brain Project

Presenter(s):



Abstract:

  • In relating Pliny’s famous anecdote about the artist Zeuxis, that Zeuxis (painted) a picture of grapes so deftly represented that birds began to fly down to eat the painted vine, Richard Sennet comments that,

     

    “a modern reader might take this to be a story about the artist’s powers of illusion, a Roman thought it showed art’s relationship to reality”.

     

    If there is a single general expectation of the recent advances in the technologies of virtual reality and hyper-interactive simulation it is that of it’s capacity to present an ever increasing realism. The quest for seamlessly reproduced worlds is paramount in the military and institutional development of the simulation technologies. The ideal (achievable or otherwise) of immersive virtual reality consists of surrounding an individual with images and sounds so apparently like those of the real world that the eye and consequently the brain is fooled into thinking it is in that world. These developing strategies and away from the construction and sustenance of our normal relationship to the world are those of realism rid of expression, symbol or metaphor and they are sustained by the authorities of homogeneity and seamlessness. Just as long rendering times and their outcome of low frame rates are constantly, and expensively, fought against because they disturb the seamlessness and the effectiveness of the illusion so ruptures in the content and the consumption of the worlds are discouraged. Stopping to consider the strangeness of a sound distorted by being played too slowly or the flickering or jerkiness of an image disrupts our sense of ourselves as being in normal relations with a world.  Similarly the consideration of a subtext or a hidden meaning draws attention to our consideration and away from the construction and sustenance of our normal relationship to the world.

     

    Full text p. 15-17

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