Deb, S., Carruth, D. W., Sween, R., Strawderman, L., & Garrison, T. M. (2017). Efficacy of virtual reality in pedestrian safety research. Applied Ergonomics, 65, 449–460. doi: 10.1016/j.apergo.2017.03.007 (https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0003687017300662)
This study uses VR to research pedestrian behavior when crossing the road and how mistakes in driving can result in car-pedestrian collisions. The interesting thing about this study is that it took note of an important possible side effect of using VR. The abstract mentions 11% of participants in the study got motion sickness and withdrew. This is important because the fact that not everyone will be able to handle VR, needs to be considered, before taking steps in that direction for any school. There were 26 total participants from Mississippi State University and their community in healthy condition, and four withdrew from motion sickness before the hour-and-fifteen-minute study concluded. For our project, we need to consider the possible side effects of using VR and how people will react to wearing it.
Some general concerns of technology that we should consider when developing the structure of our project and providing a strong foundation of social impact.
Boorstin, D., & Daniel J. Boorstin Collection (Library of Congress). (1974). Democracy and its discontents: Reflections on everyday america ([1st ed.] ed.). New York: Random House.
In the chapter Technology and Democracy: Getting There Is All the Fun of Daniel Boorstin's book, he discussed the pressing issue of how technology has caused our society to experience attenuation or a flattened out view of the world that lacks true poignancy. The concept of poignancy is used to describe something of intense depth and concentration, where you absorb the feeling of the material. Boorstin is saying technology could be disconnecting us from the natural and realistic feel of the world around us. He believes that technology is weakening our society’s desire to socially interact with others. Boorstin called this kind of thought the decline of congregation. Boorstin mentions the consequence of this disconnection to others when he states, “But one of the prices paid was the decline of congregation being the drawing together of people where they could enjoy and react and respond to the reactions and feelings of their fellows.” This quote is explaining how our society is missing the importance of face to face bonding to help us thrive as humans. With the increase of momentum in creating technology, comes the risk of going too far and creating unstoppable danger.
I wanted to play devil's advocate by including this article that has a negative perspective on our society’s use of technology. Our group needs to create a project that sets a strong foundation of social change through the use of technology and will prove these above statements wrong. With the use of technology, art, and movement, our class will hopefully create a project that will help bring communities closer together, improve physical and mental well-being, and break down barriers that restrict meaningful interaction, understanding, and empathy for one another.