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This man will experience someone else's life through a VR headset

Jon Fingas, @jonfingas
November 18, 2014
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You've probably had a moment or two where you wanted to live vicariously through a friend, but artist Mark Farid wants to take that concept to its logical extreme. He's planning an art installation, Seeing-I, where he'll experience another man's life through a virtual reality headset for 28 days straight. This other person won't be connected in real time (everything will be recorded six days in advance), but he'll have to share everything he records through a clandestine camera, no matter how private the situation might be. Mark's only direct contact with humans will be an hour with his psychologist each day, and his schedule is chained to that of his "input;" he'll eat, sleep and take bathroom breaks when this distant subject does. Ideally, the project will answer whether or not you lose some of your own identity by taking on someone else's for a long time.

If you think this sounds dangerous, you're right. As Vice explains, there are real concerns that Mark will risk losing his sense of self and face deep psychological issues. There's also a worry about eye damage, although opticians don't believe he'll deal with adverse effects. Either way, Mark may have to tap out early if there are signs of trouble -- and suffice it to say that you won't want to try this at home, no matter how much you like using your Oculus Rift.

[Image credit: Freel and Gorse]

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