Enhanced Reality: Enhanced Reality And Our New Self

Enhanced Reality: If we choose to look as distantly and objectively as we can, wearing the costume of the history of the future, the age and the society in which we live - in the broadest sense and without geographical constraints - I think we will agree that we will be studying for the next generation in terms of the relationship we have developed with social media.Enhanced Reality

As we are now studying the relationship between Human and TV and the way our Internet has changed before 15-20 years, we will be the subject of our study of how we have incorporated social media into our everyday life.

(In case anyone doubts the importance of social media, one can take a look at this research which shows how many hours we spend every day using them, their impact on all countries, their growth rate and many other elements)

The Theory of Enhanced Reality

I think the big difference compared to the other stations in the historical map of the man-mesa is that it is now the first time the media world does not go along with reality but has become our own reality. We no longer live two lives: one offline and one online. We live an alloy of 2 where our identities, our professions, our friendships, the information, the reality itself move on a single line. A line made from both natural and digital elements. I will name it, arbitrarily, strengthened reality (enhanced reality).

Enhanced Reality

As this highly commentary on Reddit shows, we are no longer surfing the internet. We are in it all day, every day in one way or another. We can walk on the street but have the geolocation of a dating app enabled, be in the theater and read live comments about the show on twitter or shop in the supermarket and scan the code of a product with our mobile phone to see how much it costs online.

This new, reinforced reality in which we operate brings about hundreds of changes that cover a wide range of our daily lives from our personal relationships to building our own character. In the following paragraphs, I will try to focus on the part of our personal identity and how it is shaped in the context of the enhanced reality.

The Theory of Two Self

If one looks at academic publications that analyze the average user of digital social networks on an anthropological and psychological level, one will come across references to the "struggle" of the two selves, the analog and the digital, the difference in expression of the two, the usually diametrically opposite character and of course the reasonable question of what is the true character of the user. The one in the "normal" world or in the digital? The most recent studies even talked about the term digital divinity (digital dualism) that interpreted the confusion of the boundaries of these two identities, which many times entered one into the fields of the other. A typical example is the habit of twitter users being recommended using their twitter name in specific social situations while in others with their real name.

The Transition to a Psychedelic Identity

So, human nature, in combination with the evolution of technology, has turned into the above-mentioned theories as the rules changed. In the reinforced reality we do not have 2 ourselves but one based on an identity, pulp (an equally arbitrary term derived from the word phygital). Pulsed identity gathers features and elements that are, for the time being, strange and foreign as we have not met them again in the past.

I will categorize the elements of our new self in 3 larger teams. The Area, Data and Identity. That is, what material we share, how we process and interpret and who really belongs to it.

The Preparation of the Content for Us Without Us

During the rapid growth of the internet and social networks, the view prevailed that it was the first time that such a clear democratization of the means of expression for the average user took place. The mistake lies in the fact that we confused the possibility of expression with the possibility of disclosing it. We thought that because our writings and our photographs could potentially reach the screens of hundreds of thousands of people, we also had hundreds of thousands of ways to express ourselves. Something that of course does not apply.

So in the part of the content, that is, what we create and how we communicate it, the material and the general context pre-exist by defining and limiting to a great extent what we will share with other users. Algorithms have created a newsfeed based on their own parameters, photo filters have been selected based on their impact, trending topics lead you to comment, emoticons push you to give a psychological background to your writing and of course The social media themselves know before you who you should address, reminding you "do you want to tag your friend here?" or "why dont you congratulate your friend for his new job?"

Our Identity is Measurable

Enhanced Reality

The next important feature we encounter in mapping our new selves is the role of numerical data in everyone's attempt to create an identity. All social media "characterize" their users based on quantitative rather than qualitative data. In the new era, you are defined based on the number of followers you have, the likes that your photos collect and your klout. Only by maximizing this data do you grow as a person.

In recent decades, the way man defined himself came mainly from the purchase of products through which he acquired a specific identity. Then it went to the stage of self brand where each of us managed his digital self as a business by choosing the space that will be "active" eg sports, politics, arts (strategy), what to communicate (marketing) and how to communicate with them others (customer service).

Now, the average user of social networks has gone to a next stage. From a brand switches to an easy-to-digest (meme generator). In reinforced reality, it is important how many times the material you postulate is relayed, which rarely has almost never been produced by you. We act as hunting dogs looking for interesting secondary material that will bring us very high numbers through which we will gain social recognition.

Typically, Stanford University recently published one research which studies the role of each user in spreading information until it reaches the level to be considered viral.

Lack of Ownership

Finally, our new selves are not defined in terms of ownership and personal possession. Our new self no longer belongs to us. All our personal information, from the most insignificant to the most important, has been registered in this impersonal network called the Internet. The most interesting element in the issue of privacy on the internet is the desire of the user himself to publish even information that is not even requested.

Now, our memory and our experiences have much less power than the storage capabilities of social networks. When we want to look back, we consult the profilefefe of our profile rather than our own memory or a possible conversation with a friend. It is no coincidence that at the end of each year all social media offers us the opportunity to "remember our actions" through short videos.

Impersonal algorithms know ourselves better than us. Once we've been handed over to them all of our personal information, they're the ones who suggest us who should be our next facebook friend, which book to buy and what music to listen to.

The next step

The mixing of these 2 worlds and the logical creation of a reinforced reality was something inevitable since technology became an integral part of our everyday life. Even if today, some are reluctant or unconvinced about the existence of this reinforced reality, the only certainty is that in the coming years this will be uncontested but perhaps outdated in the face of the development of new phenomena even stronger in terms of creating personal confusion. The development of virtual reality applications is certainly such a phenomenon.

Related links: Marginal Utility Blog
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