Mar 25, 2020
By Kelby Clark
Paramount Pictures’ futurist-in-residence says we have the technology available today to stay connected—easily, safely, and remotely.
It’s undeniable that coronavirus will change our lives. It already has.
Employees accustomed to formal meetings in soundproof conference rooms are taking Zoom calls in their kitchen. Couples who are fond of date night at the movies are streaming new studio films from the comfort of their homes. And, millions of kids are learning from home via online lessons.
Whether we like it or not, this is a moment of profound shift in the way we use technology to replace the real with the virtual. That’s not to make light of the current situation—one in which thousands have died, businesses have shuttered, and the future looks increasingly unclear—but to instead point out that the creative digital experiments we need to take us into the future are happening right now, when we need them more than ever.
This transition to digital or “virtual living” has been happening slowly for a long time. Because of the COVID-19 virus, it’s been fast-tracked. We’re now forced to acknowledge the benefits of cloud services, video conferencing, gaming, as well as augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), and mixed reality (MR) to reduce feelings of isolation and to help us accomplish the everyday tasks, responsibilities, and activities that we would normally do in the physical world.
"In the coming months, it is crucial that we stay calm and help others do the same. The good news is various technologies and digital tools are available to help us do that."
"Innovators have been creating new ways to watch and play together."
"With this current crisis we're relying on the things we've learned from 'Star Trek' to run our daily lives."