Jump to content

Welcome to FutureTimeline.forum
Register now to gain access to all of our features. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to create topics, post replies to existing threads, give reputation to your fellow members, get your own private messenger, post status updates, manage your profile and so much more. If you already have an account, login here - otherwise create an account for free today!
Photo

Will virtual reality or some other technology replace travel in 20-30 years time


  • Please log in to reply
21 replies to this topic

#1
shiba2666

shiba2666

    New Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 2 posts

Hi guys, I am wondering whether if virtual reality (VR which can replicate all human senses) or some kind of technology will eliminate leisure travel. Or will people still to travel even if the technology is available?



#2
wjfox

wjfox

    Administrator

  • Administrators
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 10,146 posts
  • LocationLondon

Zero percent chance that it will "eliminate" leisure travel (at least, anytime soon), though it will reduce the need for some journeys.

 

As VR tech improves in terms of resolution/content, while falling in cost, its usage will obviously increase.

 

However, humans have a deep emotional and psychological need to experience things in the real world. Not just sights and sounds, but also smells, touch, taste, and all the physical subtleties that even the best VR headsets can't reproduce.

 

Maybe a switch will occur in the 22nd century when holodeck-style environments become possible – but even then, I'd want to retain my ability to meet real people, real friends and family, etc. I'd want to see the real Mona Lisa, and the real Sistine Chapel, as opposed to an artificial recreation that's tricking my senses.


  • Zaphod, Yuli Ban, Jakob and 2 others like this

#3
funkervogt

funkervogt

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 631 posts

VR could reduce the need to travel for leisure in 20-30 years, but it won't replace it. 


  • Casey and Yuli Ban like this

#4
Zaphod

Zaphod

    Esteemed Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 768 posts
  • LocationUK
Whilst I agree with Will, I do think almost everyone underestimates the role FIVR (Full-Immersion Virtual Reality) will have on humanity. If and when we get FIVR (or something close), I can honestly see it eliminating reality for the vast majority of people. If you can recreate and then improve upon everything that exists in reality, there is little reason to stay in reality anymore. Your friends and family would still be real people, just present in VR. In fact I would bet that you will be more likely to see them in VR, as that is where they will spend most of their time. 
 
The advantages of an advanced virtual world over reality could be profound. Say you wanted to experience the Sistine Chapel. Well in FIVR you could not only see a perfect current day recreation (and without the tourists if you like), but also could travel back in time and watch events in real-time, like the moment that Michelangelo paints the fingers of God in The Creation of Adam. Then maybe you speak to one of the clergymen who gives you an idea of what life was like in Rome 500 years ago. Then maybe you want something with a bit more adrenaline and talk to a group of shell-shocked peasants on the outskirts of the city, who describe encountering a sorcerer conjuring dark magic. You end up on a long and epic quest around the world, fighting an ancient order of Illuminati sorcerers, who you eventually defeat, saving the world. Every twist and turn in the story is perfectly calibrated towards providing maximum engagement and satisfaction, with your every decision creating a different yet satisfying path. Every single person could be the hero in their own story, how true is that for most people in reality?
 
Of course, this would require extremely advanced generative AI, using all of humanities knowledge to best recreate an accurate depiction of historical places, people and events, before adding novel and fully-developed characters and events to the narrative. Such an advanced simulation will probably be possible around the same time as FIVR. 
 

  • Casey likes this

#5
shiba2666

shiba2666

    New Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 2 posts

What happens if you lose the quest and die while hooked up to FIVR? Do you actually die?

 

 You end up on a long and epic quest around the world, fighting an ancient order of Illuminati sorcerers, who you eventually defeat, saving the world. 



#6
Zaphod

Zaphod

    Esteemed Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 768 posts
  • LocationUK

 

What happens if you lose the quest and die while hooked up to FIVR? Do you actually die?

 

 

"The body cannot live without the mind" -  Morpheus, The Matrix.

 

In all seriousness, you could argue that the virtual world will always have the caveat of any of your actions not having the potential for fatal or truly life-changing consequences. Some might argue that the knowledge of our own mortality brings a certain beauty and poetry to human endeavors, that cannot be replicated in the virtual world. There may be some truth in this, but the fact that many people already spend a lot of their lives in primitive video games and have a high emotional investment, makes me think this is less important than many people think. We have a strong capacity to suspend disbelief and this is evident in books, TV and cinema. When we watch a superhero movie, we all know beforehand that really, in the end, the good guys are going to win, yet we enjoy the story anyway. The loss of an NPC who you grow close to in the simulation may be high enough stakes for most people. Conversely, you could even argue that reality will be so safe and controlled that we lack this human experience and will seek to experience it in the virtual world. 



#7
Nick1984

Nick1984

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 587 posts
  • LocationUK

Zero percent chance that it will "eliminate" leisure travel (at least, anytime soon), though it will reduce the need for some journeys.

Agreed, there's a trend towards "authentic experiences" and going off the beaten track.

VR will be a great way of promoting travel and locations, but that's all. Most people want to see the Sistene Chapel in person, to feel present in that location, not on a screen screen.

VR will be great for experiences that can't be replicated in real life, being a 90s kid I'd love to be able experience things I've missed out on, something like a live Beatles concert (minus the screaming).

#8
Alislaws

Alislaws

    Democratic Socialist Materialist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,852 posts
  • LocationLondon

Another thread full of people projecting their current attitudes onto future people.

 

The 30 year timeframe makes this more sensible than in most cases, but it feels like a lot of the answers given seem to be answering the question "If today's virtual reality technology became widespread, would this eliminate Travel" to which the obvious answer is no.

 

On the other hand in 2049 VR may have advanced quite a lot. If in 2049 something like FIVR is available, then this absolutely will eliminate a huge​ proportion of travel.

 

First and foremost, all business travel will be unnecessary. 

 

As far as holidays anyone wanting to party hard would do it in FIVR, for the total safety and comfort and it being 1000x cheaper, and everyone being in perfect shape with perfect hygiene, but mostly for the 1000x cheaper part. 

 

For people wanting to experience other cultures and see amazing things, Yes there will be something extra special about knowing you are looking at the real pyramids, not a subjectively indistinguishable virtual copy, but even then only the very wealthy are going to be willing to spend £1000s to fly over to Egypt when they could simply look at the subjectively indistinguishable version at home in their bed. 

 

The main reason people would want to travel is going to be to actually experience the culture of that place and meet the people of that place, but if those people are all hanging out on the Egypt FIVR server, you could just log into that and have the same culturally immersive experience instantly and for much less, and you could do it in the evenings after work without needing to use up your holiday. 

 

Tourism will die very quickly once FIVR becomes widespread, which if we assume it was perfected in 2049 would probably take until 2080 or so, for the younger people, who grow up with FIVR to take over. Anyone growing up with FIVR would very likely not see any particular increase in value from an experience due to it being in the real world over the same experience in VR, because logically it makes no difference, and they would look/smell/taste/sound/feel exactly the same. 

 

And everyone is assuming that we're not eventually going to try and address global warming, which in the next 30 years might become a really a critical issue, and we might find that flights are much more expensive in 2049 than they are today. 

 

(unless we have electric planes working by then?)


  • Casey likes this

#9
wjfox

wjfox

    Administrator

  • Administrators
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 10,146 posts
  • LocationLondon

 

First and foremost, all business travel will be unnecessary. 

 

You're assuming that everybody will use the brain-computer interfaces required for FIVR. I'm a huge tech fan, but the idea of implants, and especially any sort of device that's connected to my brain or nervous system, is rather scary. In any case, I'm sure there are many situations in business/politics where a human is required to be somewhere in person, and it's simply impractical or inappropriate to be using VR – at least for now. Perhaps things will change in the more distant future, if/when society becomes 100% digital.


  • CyberMisterBeauty likes this

#10
funkervogt

funkervogt

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 631 posts

First and foremost, all business travel will be unnecessary. 

Most business travel is already unnecessary thanks to videoconferencing technology, but companies still do it. Face-to-face meetings and the ability to speak with other important people behind closed doors builds personal relationships that technology can't (yet) replicate. In 20-30 years, there will be less business travel, but the top guys will still jet to meetings. Doing so will also be done partly to signal their elite status. 

 

 

For people wanting to experience other cultures and see amazing things, Yes there will be something extra special about knowing you are looking at the real pyramids, not a subjectively indistinguishable virtual copy, but even then only the very wealthy are going to be willing to spend £1000s to fly over to Egypt when they could simply look at the subjectively indistinguishable version at home in their bed. 

 
The main reason people would want to travel is going to be to actually experience the culture of that place and meet the people of that place, but if those people are all hanging out on the Egypt FIVR server, you could just log into that and have the same culturally immersive experience instantly and for much less, and you could do it in the evenings after work without needing to use up your holiday. 
 
Tourism will die very quickly once FIVR becomes widespread, which if we assume it was perfected in 2049 would probably take until 2080 or so, for the younger people, who grow up with FIVR to take over. Anyone growing up with FIVR would very likely not see any particular increase in value from an experience due to it being in the real world over the same experience in VR, because logically it makes no difference, and they would look/smell/taste/sound/feel exactly the same. 

I doubt that true FIVR will exist in 2049. Certainly, we will have extremely good VR headsets by then, and something like crude holodecks, that will replicate the visual and auditory aspects of real places and people with lifelike fidelity. However, reproducing the olfactory and tactile aspects of those places will lag (e.g. - if you're exploring Cairo, how do you reproduce the 100 degree heat, and the smells of cooking food and diesel exhaust?), and you'll still be able to tell you're in a simulation, so the experience won't count as "fully immersive". 

 

I'd be interested in using VR to "visit" second-tier destinations--particularly those that are unsafe--like Haiti or Iraq. 

 

 

And everyone is assuming that we're not eventually going to try and address global warming, which in the next 30 years might become a really a critical issue, and we might find that flights are much more expensive in 2049 than they are today. 

 
(unless we have electric planes working by then?)

It is also possible that global warming might not become a really critical issue by 2049, and/or that people will prove unwilling to sacrifice the ability to fly to vacation destinations. 

 

I don't think large, electric passenger planes will be in common use until the second half of this century. Small electric aircraft should be cost-competitive with gas-powered aircraft around 2050. 


  • Alislaws likes this

#11
Alislaws

Alislaws

    Democratic Socialist Materialist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,852 posts
  • LocationLondon

My FIVR predictions are based on the fact there are companies today claiming they will have the technological hardware to do full non-invasive BCI within a decade.

 

e.g. Openwater (see any of Starspawn's many posts discussing the near future of brain imaging and the revolutionary affect this may have on AI and neuroscience)

 

As well as other companies claiming they will have invasive BCIs (requiring surgery etc.) in the next 20 years or so. 

 

Of course if it turns out that:

  • they are lying
  • there are unforeseen roadblocks
  • the journey between "we can technically interface with the brain in any way we want" and "we now have software capable of FIVR using this hardware" turns out to be incredibly difficult.

Then who knows?

 

Ray Kurzweil's singularity date was 2045 I think, so in a best case scenario we have no idea what will be going on in 2049  :biggrin:

 

I'm 100% with everyone else on the idea that improved versions of modern HMDs will not end travel, even if we had scent generators and a haptic feedback suit etc.

 

 

Most business travel is already unnecessary thanks to videoconferencing technology, but companies still do it. Face-to-face meetings and the ability to speak with other important people behind closed doors builds personal relationships that technology can't (yet) replicate. In 20-30 years, there will be less business travel, but the top guys will still jet to meetings. Doing so will also be done partly to signal their elite status. 

The reason businesses continue to do face to face meetings is that video calls are nowhere near as effective as regular conversation, we (and our communication methods) have evolved to get a lot of stuff from body language, (like when someone else want to talk, how someone else is taking what you are saying etc.), this is very hard to do via a teleconference. If you have a million dollar deal to do, you don't allow anything that might make your pitch less effective, even if it costs $20,000 to fly everyone in.

 

Big business leaders don't actually enjoy sitting around on planes for tens of hours any more than the rest of us, even if they're private Jets. They'd switch to FIVR (if it was equally effective) like a shot, after all if its as effective as meeting IRL then they can do all their work from their Caribbean villa with no downsides.

 

FIVR will be exactly as effective as a face to face meeting, since, to our brains, there would be no difference. 


  • Casey likes this

#12
CyberMisterBeauty

CyberMisterBeauty

    The most beautiful male in the universe

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 531 posts
  • LocationThe largest city of the year 2192,celebrating my 200th birthday

 

 

First and foremost, all business travel will be unnecessary. 

 

You're assuming that everybody will use the brain-computer interfaces required for FIVR. I'm a huge tech fan, but the idea of implants, and especially any sort of device that's connected to my brain or nervous system, is rather scary. In any case, I'm sure there are many situations in business/politics where a human is required to be somewhere in person, and it's simply impractical or inappropriate to be using VR – at least for now. Perhaps things will change in the more distant future, if/when society becomes 100% digital.

 

 

Why would you be afraid of having nanobots inside your brain since they could enhance your brain?



#13
wjfox

wjfox

    Administrator

  • Administrators
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 10,146 posts
  • LocationLondon

 

 

 

First and foremost, all business travel will be unnecessary. 

 

You're assuming that everybody will use the brain-computer interfaces required for FIVR. I'm a huge tech fan, but the idea of implants, and especially any sort of device that's connected to my brain or nervous system, is rather scary. In any case, I'm sure there are many situations in business/politics where a human is required to be somewhere in person, and it's simply impractical or inappropriate to be using VR – at least for now. Perhaps things will change in the more distant future, if/when society becomes 100% digital.

 

 

Why would you be afraid of having nanobots inside your brain since they could enhance your brain?

 

 

They "could" enhance my brain. They "could" also destroy it. I'd rather just remain natural. At least until it's 100% proven to be safe. And I mean 100%, not 95 or even 99%.


  • CyberMisterBeauty likes this

#14
Alislaws

Alislaws

    Democratic Socialist Materialist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,852 posts
  • LocationLondon

 

 

 

 

First and foremost, all business travel will be unnecessary. 

 

You're assuming that everybody will use the brain-computer interfaces required for FIVR. I'm a huge tech fan, but the idea of implants, and especially any sort of device that's connected to my brain or nervous system, is rather scary. In any case, I'm sure there are many situations in business/politics where a human is required to be somewhere in person, and it's simply impractical or inappropriate to be using VR – at least for now. Perhaps things will change in the more distant future, if/when society becomes 100% digital.

 

 

Why would you be afraid of having nanobots inside your brain since they could enhance your brain?

 

 

They "could" enhance my brain. They "could" also destroy it. I'd rather just remain natural. At least until it's 100% proven to be safe. And I mean 100%, not 95 or even 99%.

 

Also, FIVR would allow someone to torture someone else in ways previously impossible to imagine. 

 

They could make it impossible for the victim to ever know if they were in real life or not, just as a funny prank!

 

Not to mention creating a hell and putting people in it, which you could also do. 

 

Regulation of this tech should be a huge priority whenever it shows up. 


  • wjfox likes this

#15
tomasth

tomasth

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 169 posts
If BCI can change dreams , hackers could run such pranks.

#16
wjfox

wjfox

    Administrator

  • Administrators
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 10,146 posts
  • LocationLondon

Also, FIVR would allow someone to torture someone else in ways previously impossible to imagine. 
 
They could make it impossible for the victim to ever know if they were in real life or not, just as a funny prank!
 
Not to mention creating a hell and putting people in it, which you could also do. 
 
Regulation of this tech should be a huge priority whenever it shows up.

 

Yeah, I remember in the Altered Carbon series, one of the books had a scene where a character is in FIVR, and is slowly tortured by a group of doctors in white coats, all of whom are digitally altered to have the same face as themselves. Imagine a group of people who look just like you, cutting you open with surgical blades. :fie:


  • CyberMisterBeauty and Yuli Ban like this

#17
CyberMisterBeauty

CyberMisterBeauty

    The most beautiful male in the universe

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 531 posts
  • LocationThe largest city of the year 2192,celebrating my 200th birthday

 

 

 

 

First and foremost, all business travel will be unnecessary. 

 

You're assuming that everybody will use the brain-computer interfaces required for FIVR. I'm a huge tech fan, but the idea of implants, and especially any sort of device that's connected to my brain or nervous system, is rather scary. In any case, I'm sure there are many situations in business/politics where a human is required to be somewhere in person, and it's simply impractical or inappropriate to be using VR – at least for now. Perhaps things will change in the more distant future, if/when society becomes 100% digital.

 

 

Why would you be afraid of having nanobots inside your brain since they could enhance your brain?

 

 

They "could" enhance my brain. They "could" also destroy it. I'd rather just remain natural. At least until it's 100% proven to be safe. And I mean 100%, not 95 or even 99%.

 

 

That would be weird. The nanobots inside the brain would be very small( smaller than cells ans perhaps smaller than organelles), so therefore they would have relatively low functionality and low "intelligence". The nanomachines would only do what they will be programmed to do right? Or will they have free will even having such a small size? If nanobots are programmed to do only virtual reality or Augmented Reality, they will only do that right? And you would have to control them. I don`t believe nanobots would do anything with your body without your consent. They couldn`t form a swarm and paint my bedroom walls without me ordering them to do that.

 

Do you want me to believe that if billions of nanobots together would want to build a skyscraper or an arcology without a company or the government order them to do so? Would they change my hair or eye color or increase my muscle mass without my consent? I don`t think so. Mind control or a computer program would have to be used to control the nanobots in order to do what you want. So if you want to exit a FIVR program the nanobots will unplug from your brain cells and you be back to real life isn`t?



#18
Casey

Casey

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 659 posts

I don't think traveling will ever be replaced wholesale - even a 100 percent faithful FIVR rendition of Egypt won't change the fact that, in the real version of Egypt, there's different people going about their day and doing different things (which is a distinction that will matter to a certain percentage of people) - but I think VR travel will ultimately become more popular, at least for a time, simply because it's far more accessible and convenient.

 

Quality's just one of many factors to consider here. Real life visits might be the ideal for most people, assuming that they're mentally healthy and don't have issues like social anxiety or aversion to sensory overload, but most people lack the time, money, or mobility to go on one. I personally lack all three of those things, and time/money are typically on a scale where having a great amount of one means that you lack in the other. Unless you're retired, being financially well off requires a good job that cuts down on your free time significantly.

 

So the three options at play here are "the 100 percent authentic experience," "the 70 percent pretty good experience (VR)," and "the zero percent nothing at all." The first option is off-limits for most, so that just leaves the other two. And if given the choice between 'pretty good' and 'nothing at all,' most would opt for the former.

 

An analogy would be something like sports games aired on TV. The NFL started up in 1920, with the very first televised game airing in 1939. I'm sure there were some people who thought that sports games on TV would never catch on because they lacked so many elements of the authentic experience, but as we all know, the Super Bowl has never been an event that's lacked exposure or popularity these past 50 years despite most of its audience members being the TV crowd. Attending the Super Bowl in-person might be the ideal, but it's impractical for most and watching it on TV is a 'good enough' compromise. I'm sure that even the limited audience for that first televised game in 1939 got some excitement out of it, despite watching on a grainy black-and-white television in a resolution that would probably make 144p Youtube videos seem clear as a bell.

 

As for the senses, I actually think the main issues facing VR are not the difficulty in replicating all five senses, but that they rather lie in other areas (namely the difficulty in exploring large areas bigger than whatever room you're in, and the fact that VR isn't yet like a 3D version of FaceTime but that you have to represent yourself via low-quality avatars). Sight and sound are the two most important senses to simulate because you're always being bombarded by things related to those two. As for the other three...

 

Touch is the most important, though it depends on the environment you're in and how you interact with it. A VR simulation of Wal-Mart or some other store could be very convincing so long as I just walked around and didn't try to interact with the inventory. If you're going on a VR date in an online relationship with someone at a cafe, though, yeah, being unable to sit down at one of the chairs or something like that could be immersion-breaking.

Smell can be immersion-breaking in some instances, but generally only in areas that should have a strong, distinctive smell - like if you're visiting a sawmill in VR, or visiting a yard with freshly cut grass. For many places, though, you simply just accept whatever smell exists in your natural environment. 

Taste is more or less completely optional outside some edge cases. I guess some people could go "Travel won't feel real to me unless I can try out the local cuisine," but that depends on the person. I wouldn't really care about that personally.

 

There's also an X factor I rarely see discussed in that sometimes, the brain can actually fill in the gaps regarding missing sensory information. I first noticed this when using this one Gear VR app in 2015 that allowed for free movement, and how I felt obligated to lean on the wall (in VR) for support, the same way that I would in real life. Roller coaster apps can make it feel as though the wind is rushing against my face despite the fact that I'm sitting still on my living room couch, and in this one VR Visual Novel called Tokyo Chronos, one of the antagonists grabs you by the throat and lifts you into the air very early on in the story - something that made me feel a bit like I was actually dangling in mid-air.

 

It's possible that VR travel could overshadow real life travel across the next few decades, but that in an eventual automated society where things are much cheaper (along with the brain and body being understood well enough that things like energy levels and easily overwhelmed temperaments can be overcome) physical travel will make a comeback since convenience will then be on its side. Convenience is something that plays a major role here. The Caveman Principle is a good one, but one caveat to that principle is that humans and animals are willing to accept somewhat inferior substitutes so long as it scratches at that basic itch, such as with Harlow's monkeys and the fake cloth mothers. They didn't reject them for not being the fully genuine article. They appreciated them for being 'good enough.'



#19
Maximum7

Maximum7

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 134 posts

Not 20-30 years. Probably 40-60. By 2100, their will be no need to leave your room.


  • Alislaws likes this

#20
Nick1984

Nick1984

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 587 posts
  • LocationUK

Not 20-30 years. Probably 40-60. By 2100, their will be no need to leave your room.


What an utterly miserable prospect.




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users