Role of Hyper-reality In Real Life

Keichi Mastuda, a London based fashion designer, released a short film called Hyper-reality where he is showing a world where the physical reality and the augmented reality gets merged to form a futuristic vision of the society. With the blending of virtual realities and augmented realities into the physical world, there will soon come a time where we cannot even distinguish between physical reality and virtual reality. Keichi believes that society is already witnessing this change. Technology has overlapped our daily activities. While it has created some amazing possibilities, it has also become a new form of controlling mechanism where each of our habits, lifestyles, choices and personalities are dictated by technology. A very famous French sociologist Jean Baudrillard had described the effects of hyper-reality and how it will lay the foundation of a dystopian future. He firmly believed that technology will shape up the way people will view the world. They will consume a reality or rather live in a reality which is fabricated and false and believe that it is the actual reality. The implications of his analysis can be felt today. A simple example would be social media. People love to create a false, make-believe reality of their selves and present it to the world. The likes, shares and comments from different strangers are the testaments of an illusion of the online lives people have created for themselves and are now sharing their false versions with the world. In other words, what you are seeing is not at all real. 

Hyper-reality, just like any other technological innovation, can benefit or disrupt society. Let’s explore the places where hyper-reality can be seen making positive changes or has been making a considerable impact? 

Hyper-reality in gaming

The gaming industry has been swept by radical technological advancements. The emergence of VR and AR have caused disruptions in conventional gaming. VR headsets and glasses have let the players interact with another world during real-time. For example, if the player is playing virtual poker at an online casino, he gets to experience a simulated version of a Las Vegas casino right from his home. He gets to interact with all the visual elements and symbols of the game. There are actual dealers and players that make up for an actual casino-like environment. AR games have blurred the lines between reality and fiction. Successful game Pokemon Go has achieved this milestone. You can see a Pikachu or Charmander or PsyDuck at the physical space. The characters which were once shown on television have come to real life. The amalgamation of AR and VR have proved how the virtual and physical realities can co-exist in one space. 

Hyper-reality in films
Movies are an exaggeration of reality. Which is why many viewers wish to experience that reality. But the film industry has taken this exaggeration one step further. To make the movie-viewing experience more stimulating and engaging, big production houses have been releasing their films in 3D. And what makes 3D possible? Virtual reality. The audience can wear 3D glasses and fulfil their dream of living inside a movie. The Harry Potter franchise has released its last movie Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows. For once, beloved fans can relive the magic on screen as they get to be a part of the Hogwarts universe. The illusion of Hogwarts being real only goes on to prove that there can be no distinction between fantasy and reality. Moreover, the biggest question one needs to ask is: What is even real? Are we living in the actual reality or a simulated version of what people think or believe is the reality?

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