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VWN Virtual Dictionary: Latest Terms
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Virtual Dictionary: Latest Terms

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The site homepage only has room for a few dictionary entries at a time, and when new terms are added, it is usually themically: A batch of terms dealing with the same subset of VR are added in together.

This has led to an unexpected problem. A minority of our dictionary contributors have been returning to the site and refreshing obsessively to see their term on the main page. If it has already passed through the main page in amongst a batch of other approved definitions, it will of course, not show up however many times the page is refreshed.

Lately we have been receiving some irritated mails to the effect of a term we have approved for use, did not show up on the homepage. To address that, this listing shows the last few dictionary entries that were added, and thus were some of the first things new visitors saw, for at least part of a day.

Currently it displays the past ten entries, as historically it has been very rare for us to add more than ten of these mini-articles in 24 hours. This may be subject to change if we find it is inadequate.

 

Remote Controlled Weapon

A Remote Controlled Weapon or RCW is basically what happens when you militarise a waldo. These teleoperated devices are used to protect installations or kill enemy soldiers / destroy enemy vehicles whilst the operator is somewhere safely away from all the fighting.

Slowly RCWs are being transferred to operation by AI systems rather than human operators. The AI can identify and track potential targets, manoeuvre one or more RCWs under their control into pointing at them, load it and make it ready to fire. However they typically require approval from a human operator before they actually open fire. This is due to the limited intelligence of the weak AI, limitations in distinguishing objects with machine vision, and a normal cultural requirement to have a person ultimately responsible for firing live rounds.

See Also: Weak AI, Neural Network, Machine Vision, Waldo, Teleoperated Device

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RCW

RCW is short for Remote Controlled Weapon. It's basically what happens when you militarise a waldo. These teleoperated devices are used to protect installations or kill enemy soldiers / destroy enemy vehicles whilst the operator is somewhere safely away from all the fighting.

Slowly RCWs are being transferred to operation by AI systems rather than human operators. The AI can identify and track potential targets, manoeuvre one or more RCWs under their control into pointing at them, load it and make it ready to fire. However they typically require approval from a human operator before they actually open fire. This is due to the limited intelligence of the weak AI, limitations in distinguishing objects with machine vision, and a normal cultural requirement to have a person ultimately responsible for firing live rounds.

See Also: Weak AI, Neural Network, Machine Vision, Waldo, Teleoperated Device

Permalink & Related Articles: RCW



Kansei Engineering

Kansei engineering is engineering a product or environment to play on the end-user's emotions, to capture the senses and provoke strong emotional reactions. The word Kansei is Japanese, which is a word with multiple meanings but all revolving round emotional response to sensory input.

Kansei engineer Simon Schütte coined a meaning of Kansei in 2005 which is the one broadly used for virtual environments and augmented environments alike. This variation holds that Kansei is defined as the individual subjective impression from an object, situation or environment, using the full range of senses available to them.

It applies to VR and AR more so than other types of product specifically because both revolve around suborning the end-user's senses directly, and so can offer a much more direct sensory experience, which in turn can be used to trigger a powerful emotional response.

Well engineered Kansei ensures that the emotional response triggered is the one intended by the environment or encounter designer, and such a response is a very powerful tool for pulling the user into the environment and making them feel emotionally invested in what occurs. Particularly useful for story-driven environments, kansei engineering has a major place in gameworlds and educational environments alike.

Even something as simple as tying scents to encounters in a virtual environment used for training, is a type of kansei engineering, since scent has the quickest path to a user's associative memory systems, and as such can trigger a powerful emotional reaction.

In essence, if you are trying to elicit a particular emotional response from the end-user of your environment, Kansei engineering is the discipline you require, and will tell you how best to do so.

See Also: Kansei, Immersion , Synthetic Reality, Sensory Reference Frame, Sensory Substitution Device, Feedback Channel, Soundscape, First Person Perspective, Alternate Life

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Kansei

Kansei is a Japanese word with several subtly different meanings. It tends to mean some variation of emotional response to sensory input, or cognitive response to sensory input that then triggers an emotional response.

Kansei is encountered in virtual and augmented environments in regards to Kansei Engineering which is basically engineering the world in order to take control of the user's emotional state whilst inside the world, deepening immersion and drawing them in to having emotional investment within the synthetic reality.

As such the definition for Kansei used in VR and AR, is specifically the one coined in 2005 by Kansei engineer Simon Schütte. This variation holds that Kansei is defined as the individual subjective impression from an object, situation or environment, using the full range of senses available to them.

See Also: Kansei Engineering, Synthetic Reality, Sensory Reference Frame, Sensory Substitution Device, Feedback Channel, Soundscape, First Person Perspective

Permalink & Related Articles: Kansei



Quantified Self

Quantified Self is a movement based around lifelogging. That is to say, based around using biohacking tools and techniques to quite literally log every aspect of the inputs into a person's life in order to (in theory) become master of the outputs. Quantified selves are people who as the name implies, are able to quantify every aspect of what makes them who they are, down to the smallest minutiae.

Since such a level of knowledge about the inputs to one's own life is of course, superhuman, quantified selves make use of substantial technology in order to automate data collection about themselves and their daily lives in order to augment manual records, and provide as complete level of precision as possible. As such they tend to be cybernetically enhanced organisms, with computers and peripheral devices worn about the body, sewn into their clothes, or implanted under their skin.

To be a member of the quantified self movement you have to be a lifelogger, and this means keeping complete track of all the inputs to your body. Things such a what food you eat, what fluids you drink, what air qualities you were exposed to, how long for and when. Ideally knowing what compounds were in the air you were breathing, what you saw throughout your day (some lifeloggers use recording cameras to augment their vision for this purpose). Even going to the point in some individuals where you record every interaction you had with another person or object throughout your day, and the thoughts and moods that interaction left you with.

All this, and often so much more is required to be a quantified self. after all, the end goal is complete knowledge of every possible input into your life.

At the greatest extreme, quantified selves go so far as to use long-term EEG caps and even ECoG implantable brain-surface arrays to monitor and record their brainwaves in real-time, to again gain a fuller understanding of every possible input into their system. This allows them to catch sensory input they might otherwise have missed, as well as to detect their own state of alertness amongst other elements.

They are a form of transhumanist, who have come as a group to the conclusion that the way forward past many of the supposed limitations of the human body, is to optimise that body, and squeeze the best performance possible out of it. In so doing they show all transhumanists of every stripe where the real bottlenecks in the human form are, when the system is working at an otherwise high efficiency level. Many of them also give back in the form of the ever more intricate and capable body area networked monitoring devices, which have applications throughout medical care, and augmented / virtual reality.

See Also: Lifelogger, Transhumanist, Transhumanist, Biometrics, Biohacker, Biohacking, Grinder, Wearable Computing, Smart Prosthetic, Neural Interface, BCI, Biopunk, BAN, EEG, ECoG

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Lifelogger

A lifelogger is a person who utilises biohacking techniques and technologies in order to track or log all inputs and outputs to their own biological body and all its systems. Lifeloggers track in minutiae all their inputs on a day to day basis. They track what food was consumed, the quality of the air they are exposed to, where stress occurs and how bad it is, even down to tiny details as where and at what time of day they felt aroused.

Some lifeloggers even go so far as to pair recording devices with their senses – a video log of everything they see, an audio log of everything they hear, even a gait analysis log of how they're walking.

They then use thus mountain of data to analyse how the inputs to their lives affect the outputs – their experiences, their successes, their sickness rate, etc. Due to the extreme density of the number of possible inputs into a person's daily life, lifeloggers rely heavily on augmented reality technologies and wearable computing devices networked together in order to automate the data gathering process, so they can focus on actually living their lives rather than constantly focussing on the minutiae as it streams in.

As such, lifeloggers themselves are frequently responsible for developing new body area network computing devices or wearable computing devices that could also be used for augmented reality or virtual reality applications.

Lifeloggers are also sometimes known as Quantified Selves

See Also: Body Area Network, Wearable Computing, Biometrics, Biohacking, Gait Analysis, Transhumanist, Transhumanism

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Cyberpunk

Cyberpunk as a term, originates from the novel 'Cyberpunk', authored by Bruce Bethke in 1980. It comes from a fusion of the terms 'cybernetic' and 'punk'. In other words, 'Cybernetic Punk', shortened to cyberpunk. Over time, an entire genre of science fiction formed around the term. Of particular interest is that because of the nature of cyberpunk fiction, they have as a whole become the single most often used source of inspiration for virtual reality developers ever since.

Cyberpunk is a novelistic style. It is the style of novel that most frequently portrays the probable future with regards to virtual reality, augmented reality, wearable computing, and related technologies. All cyberpunk revolves around a kind of technological freedom, with all manner of technologies exploited by the unscrupulous.

Additionally, many cyberpunk works discuss the many faceted aspects of technologies such as the rise of strong Artificial intelligence, mind uploading, omnipresent augmented reality, brain augmentation, artificially created and digital viruses, and a wide host of other technologies with an analytical, often scientific stance towards them.

See Also: Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, Biopunk, Artificial Intelligence, Total Sensory Immersion, Mind Uploading, Neuroprosthetics, Artificial General Intelligence, Brain Computer Interface, Virtual Environment, Embodiment, Wearable Computing, BAN, Smart Machine Age, Internet of Things, Cognitive Enhancer, Jack, Meatspace, Network Intrusion Detection System

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Biopunk

Biopunk, sometimes spelt Bio Punk, is a mixture of bio as in biological, and punk as in anti-establishment. It is an extension of cyberpunk in many ways, being a group of philosophies dedicated to altering or extending the capabilities of biological forms in new ways.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, biopunk philosophies as a group are transhumanist in nature.

Biopunk differs from cyberpunk in another way; whilst the technological capabilities were not in existence to elevate cyberpunk out of the realm of pure science fiction during that moniker’s heyday, biopunk activists do exist outside of fiction due to the rise of body area networks, smart prosthetics, and the ability to biohack – to isolate and modify variables inside one's own biological body.

The most ardent of biohackers, known as grinders, are essentially transhumanists who have chosen to take control of their own internal processes to the fullest extent possible (heart rate, breathing, brainwaves, blood chemical levels et al) via invasive implants and monitoring systems. They are hacking their own biology in essence.

Biopunk efforts are compatible with virtual reality and augmented reality efforts in the design of interfaces with the senses and means to artificially maintain body systems whilst in homoeostasis. The advances in using invasive and non-invasive interfaces to bond ever more deeply with the body and with the senses, directly translate into better interfaces for VR and AR as well.

See Also: Grinder, Biohacking, Transhumanist, Transhumanism, Smart Prosthetic, Biometrics, Cyberpunk, Lifelogger

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Bio Punk

Bio Punk, sometimes contracted to Biopunk, is a mixture of bio as in biological, and punk as in anti-establishment. It is an extension of cyberpunk in many ways, being a group of philosophies dedicated to altering or extending the capabilities of biological forms in new ways.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, biopunk philosophies as a group are transhumanist in nature.

Biopunk differs from cyberpunk in another way; whilst the technological capabilities were not in existence to elevate cyberpunk out of the realm of pure science fiction during that moniker’s heyday, biopunk activists do exist outside of fiction due to the rise of body area networks, smart prosthetics, and the ability to biohack – to isolate and modify variables inside one's own biological body.

The most ardent of biohackers, known as grinders, are essentially transhumanists who have chosen to take control of their own internal processes to the fullest extent possible (heart rate, breathing, brainwaves, blood chemical levels et al) via invasive implants and monitoring systems. They are hacking their own biology in essence.

Biopunk efforts are compatible with virtual reality and augmented reality efforts in the design of interfaces with the senses and means to artificially maintain body systems whilst in homoeostasis. The advances in using invasive and non-invasive interfaces to bond ever more deeply with the body and with the senses, directly translate into better interfaces for VR and AR as well.

See Also: Grinder, Biohacking, Transhumanist, Transhumanism, Smart Prosthetic, Biometrics, Cyberpunk, Lifelogger

Permalink & Related Articles: Bio Punk



Biometric Interface

A biometric interface is an interface between a computer system and one or more human (or other biological creature) users. It uses the unique individual biological readings of those users as input data.

Broadly speaking, there are two different types of biometric interface, with two very different purposes. The first one is the most well known generally: to identify who a specific individual is, and stop unauthorised individuals from gaining access where they shouldn't.

However, in terms of VR, virtual environments, and general multiple interface data channel systems, biometric interfaces have a very different purpose. Here they are designed to recognise and adapt to the individual biological patterns of a specific user, and then use them as input or feedback vectors.

An example of the first type of biometric interface would be using gait recognition sensors in a corridor to detect the individual gait (walking motion) patterns of people using that corridor, and use that to determine who those people are, where they are, and if they should be there or not.

An example of the second type of biometric interface would be gait recognition sensors in a small spherical room, treadmill or suspended gyroscope interface, that track in real-time the physical movements of the user's legs and translate that to leg movements of their avatar in the virtual world – the avatar then moving around exactly as those leg movements direct.

The biometric interface in the second example is the means of getting as much of the user's embodiment per data channel, into the system as possible, to increase the user's immersion within the system and increase the naturalness of the interface within.

See Also: Biometric, Behaviometrics, Biometric characteristic, False Match Rate, False Reject Rate, False Non-Match Rate, False Accept Rate, Embodiment, Anticipatory Medical Device, Gait Analysis

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