[-empyre-] potentially virtual

i also find the word "virtual" problematic & had resisted using it until i read marie-laure ryan's "cyberspace, virtuality & the text" where she traces the word back to its latin root virtus, with virtualis meaning potential - giving the example of the "virtual" oak in the acorn, & ryan says "... the term 'virtual' encapsulates two distinct concepts: the largely negative idea of the fake, illusory, non-existent, and the overwhelmingly positive idea of the potential, which connotes productivity, openness and diversity."

i still don't like to use it that much as i know that the current general understanding of it is more the negative aspect, however the idea of virtual-as-potential is particularly useful in talking about using "virtual" worlds as places to prototype & experiment.

h : )

Hi all,
I've been watching the SL discussion from the sidelines. A lot of interesting issues and ideas have popped up but there's one issue that occurred to me recently. Worlds such as SL are touted as being virtual, in other words, almost real but not quite. We could talk about the virtual art in such a virtual world but I've always considered the idea of "virtual art" as a misnomer. I wonder whether it couldn't be said that the only "real" thing you can encounter in SL is the art. For art is never virtual, it either is or it isn't regardless of how it manifests itself.

Pall Thayer


helen varley jamieson: creative catalyst

This archive was generated by a fusion of Pipermail 0.09 (Mailman edition) and MHonArc 2.6.8.