What does the future hold? This question is becoming increasingly relevant in today’s world as technology continues to evolve at an unprecedented rate. Thankfully, people like Galit Ariel to help us make sense of it all. Ariel is a technologist and the author of Augmenting Alice: The Future of Identity, Experience, and Reality. In her Ted Talk, ‘How AR can make us feel more connected to the world‘, Ariel highlights how augmented reality (AR) can be used to enhance our relationship with the planet we live on.
Ariel begins her talk by discussing in which ways humans have sought ways to augment their reality in order to improve their connection to the world around them throughout history. AR takes this concept one step further by allowing users to digitally interact with their surroundings in real-time. This not only permits users to interact with their environment in new and exciting ways but also encourages them to pay closer attention to objects around them.
Ariel’s work challenges us to think about how technology will impact our lives in the future and how we can use it to create more meaningful experiences. For example, she envisions a future where we can use AR to overlay digital information on top of the physical world. This would allow us to see things like traffic patterns or weather conditions in real time, or even get directions from a friend who is in a different location. Importantly, Ariel also emphasizes the importance of creating ethical guidelines for this technology so that it can be used in ways that empower individuals rather than to control them.
While her work clearly displays excitement about the potential uses of AR, Ariel is also quick to caution against its misuse. For instance, she points out that just because we have the ability to create realistic 3D images doesn’t mean that we should use them indiscriminately. There are certain situations—such as providing medical care or teaching young children—where it is important for AR images to closely resemble reality in order for users to gain the full benefit from them. In other cases—such as when playing games or watching movies—a more abstract representation may actually enhance the experience by freeing users from the constraints of reality. The critical takeaway here is that we must be thoughtful about how we use AR to maximize its potential while minimizing its risks.
Galit Ariel is a true maverick who isn’t afraid to ask hard questions and contemplate thorny issues to help us better understand the implications of rapidly changing technology. Through her work, she is reshaping our understanding of identity, experience, and reality. Her Ted Talk provides a glimpse into her visionary thinking and her book offers a deeper dive into her fascinating ideas. I highly recommend checking out both if you are interested in learning more about how technology will impact our lives in the future. As we continue hurtling towards an ever-more technologically advanced future, it is imperative that we pay attention to people like Ariel so that we can make informed decisions about how best to harness emerging technologies for the benefit of humanity as a whole.—luxury futurists, tech lovers, those interested in identity and privacy issues, and people who want to learn more about Galit Ariel and her work.