Short Film “Memories 2.0” Envisions Reliving the Past Through Virtual Reality

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One of the hard truths of human existence is that though we are able to move freely through space, we are mercilessly constrained by time.

Each moment of life arrives then rapidly passes, seemingly lost forever. In an attempt to capture information from these moments as they flow past, our brains record memories, but they are limited by what is perceived and stored on a device that is organic and fragile.

Drawing on concepts of technology, memory, and lost relationships explored in others films such as Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, the short film Memories 2.0 explores the use of virtual reality to recapture moments of love lost forever.

Whether virtual reality and neuroscience will converge in the future to produce technology that will enable the reliving of memories, science fiction films love to delve into technology’s affect on the mind. Consider movies such as Brainstorm, Until the End of the World, and The Matrix that all explore the mental strain anticipated when bridging the physical world and virtual reality. Each depicts how technology will empower us, but at a price.

Coexisting in a world full of constraints and one that seems limitless will have an impact on our identity and relationships. Yet even with today’s technology, we are increasingly existing in two realities concurrently or, put another way, the new reality is hybridized.

Digital images and video allow us to capture and relive memories in detail, and social media and cloud technology now permit vicarious reliving of moments from other people’s lives with ease. Virtual reality will only make these delvings much more immersive, and underscores the justification for Facebook’s acquisition of Oculus Rift for $2 billion.

It raises the question, How are our minds already being affected by this divide?

Memories 2.0 doesn’t offer any answers but simply a glimpse at the life of a protagonist attempting to regain a part of himself through technology. In the future, all of us may end up in his shoes.

I've been writing for Singularity Hub since 2011 and have been Editor-in-Chief since 2014. My interests cover digital education, publishing, and media, but I'll always be a chemist at heart.

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