Tangible Memory: Technology & the Digital Body
More and more of what we do, see, and create is collected digitally. This collection of digital ephemera makes up the digital body, a virtual manifestation of the self. However, unlike our physical or emotional bodies, when we die, the digital body lives on. It leaves a collection of memories, artifacts and dialogs to be experienced by friends and loved ones.
In this post-mortem state, the digital body changes and expands through its interaction with our friends and family. Its presence not only challenges us to reconsider the definition of immortality, but also poses interesting opportunities for the design and technology community to explore. Products and services can have profound impact on how we mourn, remember, and interact with those we’ve lost. In this Future15 talk, I’ll pose a variety of alternate realities in which emerging technologies combine with the digital body to enable entirely new ways of mourning, commemorating and interacting with the dead.
- What defines the digital body and how does it manifest itself?
- How might it influence procedures and rituals for end of life planning?
- How might its presence change the ways in which the living memorialize, commemorate and interact with the deceased?
- What ethical and philosophical implications are there in leaving behind a virtual version of ourselves once we’ve died?
- How can we as designers and entrepreneurs ensure that what we create enables to people to commemorate and remember the dead in an enriching, yet healthy, way?
- Melissa Martin Method
Melissa Martin Method
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