Welcome to the Imagination Age by Rita J. King
About : The Imagination Age is a broad approach to rethinking systems through a prism of technology, held up to amplify the bright beam of the imagination. Both the Diffusion eBook and the Story Cubes explore The Imagination Age through the perspective outlined by Giles Lane when he commissioned the project: Transformation: How We Become Who We Are. The Story Cubes take shape across three planes of perceived reality:
Physical Reality: First, the 27 cubes were designed on paper, meant to act as a catalyst in the physical world for people to build stories the way children build castles out of blocks. I thought it would be fabulous if people could make the cubes tremendous or tiny to show the signiﬁcance of each element in the overall scene of the story created anew each time the cubes are approached. In the physical world, the cubes remain stubbornly one size ﬁts all. You can’t make some of them disappear into the ocean while others ﬂoat in the sky. That can only be accomplished in the virtual world, so that’s where I went next.
Virtual Reality: For several years I have been working in the ﬁeld of “virtual reality.” In the virtual world Second Life, participants create avatars for themselves and can design and collaborate on any three-dimensional content they can dream up. Second Life is a creative paradise for those with the vision to give dimension to their own previously intangible imaginations and then allow people from all over the world to enhance their created landscapes. To illustrate the installation in Second Life and segue to the third plane of reality, click the link: www.youtube.com/dancinginktv#p/u/2/Y4KwvsTEHKY
Augmented Reality: Lately, my company, Dancing Ink Productions, has been working in the ﬁeld of “augmented reality,” which goes a step beyond “virtual reality” by changing the fabric of one’s immediate perceptions in the physical world. Reality is becoming a multilayered collage. 26 of the cubes correspond to letters of the Roman alphabet from which stories are told. The 27th cube has no corresponding letter, so instead, it activates the possibility for a whole new realm of understanding through an Augmented Reality marker printed on it. If you have a webcam, you can print this Augmented Reality marker out and activate the webcam at the following site: www.1000inchesinloveland.com to see the 27th cube create a new reality.
“Welcome to the Imagination Age,” documents some of the main ideas behind a worldwide collaborative movement toward a new global culture and economy in the Imagination Age. If this message of transformation speaks to you, consider it an invitation to join the experiment. Follow @RitaJKing on Twitter and ping me..
Published March 2010 in the Diffusion Transformations series
Rita J. King is CEO and Creative Director of Dancing Ink Productions. Creator of The Imagination Age. Innovator-in-Residence, IBM Analytics Virtual Center. Senior Fellow for Social Networking and Immersive Technologies at the Center for the Study of the Presidency & Congress, and a Senior Fellow at the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs, where she collaborated with Joshua S. Fouts on the “Understanding Islam through Virtual Worlds” project that spanned four continents as well as the digital culture. Investigative reporter, essayist, artist and adventurer.
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