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Transcending the meat: immersive technologies and computer mediated bodies

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In this paper we will call into question the philosophical grounding for the belief that our mind can in principle be removed from, or transcend, our bodies. We will show that modern immersive technology, such as virtual and web technologies, tacitly attempt to implement this philosophy. We will find that there is a growing community called the Transhumanists who are a loosely knit group of highly educated hi-tech professionals and scientists who explicitly accept the transcendent mind hypothesis. Through the work and influence of these professionals values that are antagonistic to the body enter, explicitly or tacitly, into computer technology. It is our claim that the transcendent mind hypothesis is in error and that immersive technologies have to take seriously issues regarding the embodied nature of their users and that this embodiment can not be transcended in any meaningful way.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2000

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