Future Presence: How Virtual Reality Is Changing Human Connection, Intimacy, and the Limits of Ordinary Life

February 27, 2020 - Comment

A Wired senior editor and virtual reality expert presents a captivating, candid glimpse into the future “realities” of this emerging technology: how we will use it to form previously impossible relationships, explore new frontiers of intimacy, and how it will forever change human connection. Heralded as the most significant technological innovation since the smartphone, virtual

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A Wired senior editor and virtual reality expert presents a captivating, candid glimpse into the future “realities” of this emerging technology: how we will use it to form previously impossible relationships, explore new frontiers of intimacy, and how it will forever change human connection.

Heralded as the most significant technological innovation since the smartphone, virtual reality is poised to transform our very notions of life and humanity. Though this tech is still in its infancy, to those on the inside, it is the future. VR will change how we work, how we experience entertainment, how we feel pleasure and other emotions, how we see ourselves, and most importantly, how we relate to each other in the real world. And we will never be the same.

Peter Rubin, senior culture editor for Wired and the industry’s go-to authority on the subject, calls it an “intimacy engine.” While once we needed another person to feel the sensations of closeness, trust, vulnerability, confidence, and titillation, VR will give us the ability to induce these sensations by ourselves for the first time in human history. This metamorphosis, Rubin argues, is going to have a powerful impact on relationships that will ripple throughout our society and our individual lives.

A journey into this uncertain future and a glimpse at the cultural implications and promises of a new reality, Future Presence explores a host of complex questions about what makes us human, what connects us, and what is real. Offering a glimpse into the mind-blowing things happening in universities, labs, and tech companies around the world, Rubin leads readers on an entertaining tour of the weirdest, wildest corners of this fascinating new universe. Describing this book as “half travelogue and half crystal ball”, Rubin will:

Introduce readers to the creators and consumers of VR technologyShow readers what an experience is like inside the current VR devicesExplain how this technology will upend everything we know about human connection in the future

At once the incredible, inevitable story of virtual reality’s rise and a look towards the future of our fantasies, Future Presence is a deeply personal examination of what connects us, and an analysis of what relationships, empathy, and sex could look like—sooner than we think.

Comments

Anonymous says:

Eye-Opening, Insightful, Accessible This is a terrific primer on VR, its origins, and its future promise. Peter Rubin deftly introduces and explains the tech in a way that mere mortals can grok, and he does so with a storyteller’s flair and an endearing sense of humor. But this is not some glossy, long-form advertisement for VR. For reasons you’ll have to pick up the book to understand, it’s also (necessarily) a deft introduction to some fascinating thinking and research in biology, psychology, sociology; and it draws connections…

Anonymous says:

Entertaining read Starts off with a lot of hype but as the book progresses, it gets more specific and interesting. The sex chapter was a little too short as I think someone can write a whole book on how VR will will change relationships and how we communicate sexually with each other.

Anonymous says:

Compelling and revealing book on virtual reality and technology by Peter Rubin. 5 Stars! In Future Presence, Peter Rubin illuminates a wide range of topics in technology and virtual reality with a compelling writing style. It’s a great book that will give you pause and make you think about trends in tech, ethical and societal issues and far more.

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