Avatars and embodied experience. RELATION BETWEEN THE SELF AND THE AVATAR

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Text of Avatars and embodied experience. RELATION BETWEEN THE SELF AND THE AVATAR

  • Slide 1
  • Avatars and embodied experience
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  • RELATION BETWEEN THE SELF AND THE AVATAR
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  • Virtual approaches as embodied, extended, enacted, and distributed.
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  • DO COGNITIVE TECHNOLOGIES? increase cognitive capacities and thus enhance human efficiency ? affect how people and society go about achieving their goals ? highlight and transform how we view ourselves and our goals? modify how we cognize and thus change our mental states and nature? give rise to new forms of cognition?
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  • QUESTIONS: Are avatars disembodied and purely virtual? Do they have any influence on social coordination?
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  • 2-D AVATARS/ 3-D AVATARS: Two-dimensional avatars such as X-Face are small images (black and white bitmap size of 48 x 48 pixels), added to the e- mail. Three-dimensional avatars are no longer static. They are able to move and perform manual tasks and gradually gain new features, such as voice, facial expressions, etc.
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  • TYPES OF AVATARS IN RP GAMES: (1) avatars generated by the software, such as conversational agents, chatbots (2) avatars of users / players.
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  • Second Life
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  • Towards the end of August 2007, SL had more than 9 million players. Currently it enjoys less participants than in 2006, when it was at the peak of its popularity. However, it still EXISTS!
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  • FROM MIST TO VARIOUS AVATARS:
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  • TYPOLOGY: ordinary business Caucasian look, ordinary Asian schoolgirl look, kinky mixed look, Afro-Caribbean rasta look non-human look (animals, hybrids, centaurs, famous cartoon characters, objects of daily use)
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  • TINIES
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  • GOREANS
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  • FURRIES
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  • TRUE BLOOD LYCAN CENTRE VAMPIRES
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  • FANTASTIC AVATARS
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  • Every newbie is looking for freebies.
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  • Meetings and interactions
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  • SPIRITUAL GROWTH
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  • COMMUNITY LIFE IN SECOND LIFE
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  • THE SIMS = FREE WILL
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  • THE NEW SELF? Avatars point out to us that enhancement is not merely a matter of increasing the effectiveness of a person in taking action, but also can mean an altered form of consciousness that expands opportunities for experiences and escape from conventional system of moral constraints (Bainbridge 2013: 91)
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  • WHERE IS THE AVATAR??
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  • LAKOFF/JOHNSON IMAGE SCHEMAS: Avatar is not me. Avatar is part of me Avatar is me (Johnson, M. The Body In The Mind, 1990)
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  • Avatar as an embodied extension
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  • PROFOUND EMBODIMENT Human beings are promiscuoysly body-and world exploiting. They are forever testing and exploring the possibilities for incorporating new resources and structures deep into their problem-sloving regimes. They are () the minds of Natural-Born Cyborgs: of systems continuously renegotiating their own limits, components, data-stores, and interfaces (Clark, A. Re-Inventing Ourselves, 2013:123)
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  • ATTUNEMENT The opening, which is a kind of understanding of the world, being in the world in an understandable way. (James Ash, Technologies of captivation: Video Games and the Attunement of Affect, 2013) (Alex Galloway, Origins of the First Person Shooter, in: Gaming 2006: 39-69)
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  • MICHEL-ANGE ARMORIM (2010) Visual Cognition - "What is my avatar seeing?": The coordination of "out-of- body" and "embodied" perspectives for scene recognition across views. Three experiments show that observers can take advantage of a virtual avatar that specifies their future embodied perspective on the visual scene.
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  • Other experiments: Corradi-Dell'Acqua and Tessari (2010) Dotov, Nie and Chemero (2010) We could also think of other consequences of having virtual characters, such as the acquisition of new, imaginative motor skills (the ability to fly, teleport, etc.) for the physical body schema
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  • THE BODILY-SOCIAL DIMENSION
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  • EMBODIED RESEARCH GROUP 1 changing the basic structure of the body and the appearance of the avatar 2. change of sex, 3 changes or multiplication of identity 4 changes or modifications to the main elements of the environment; 5 (partial) view of the world from the perspective of an independent observer.
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  • Multiple Identities Protean Personality? Secondary Avatars Posthumous avatars 17 deceased memebers of family in a research project on acestors veneration avatars.
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  • DONGPING ZHENG, MICHAEL F. YOUNG, MANUELA MARIA WAGNER, ROBERT A. BREWER (2009) Virtual 3D gaming environments establish complex situations in which English communication tools, manipulating tools, and created artifacts are embedded. Kulikowich and Young (2001) suggested that such complex learning environments can be educative by affording multiple opportunities to form intentions and pick up information in service to goal-driven action through collaboration
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  • BODILY-SOCIAL DIMENSION Division of labour Different experiences Multiple affiliations Achievement of perfection Trial and error Multiboxing
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  • Whats next?
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  • TRANSAVATARS? Aspects of my identity are offloaded onto multiple avatars, including semi- autonomous agents possessing a measure of artificial intelligence, which can function as me simultaneously, when I am not currently logged into a computer, and even after my death (Bainbridge, 2013: 92)
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  • Thank you!