Project Elysium promises a “personalized afterlife experience”

Mark Walton, for Ars Technica:

Where do we draw the line between what’s ethically acceptable in the real world and what’s ethically acceptable in the virtual world?

One of the developers putting this question to the test is Australia-based Paranormal Games. Project Elysium, its entry into the upcoming Oculus VR Jam 2015, treads some shaky moral ground by promising to create a “personalized afterlife experience,” reuniting people with loved ones who have passed on.

Matters like this divide me. On the one hand, we don’t yet have the sophistication to create anything more than texture-mapped automatons in a room, and I’m eager to see the state of the art pushed toward actual, procedural simulation.

On the other hand, as Alfred Korzybski said, the map is not the territory. Simulations are all we’re going to get for quite some time. Certainly not a being that has that spark of life, and who can muse about shared experiences.