Fashion For Digital Self. Even before ‘Ready Player One’ movie was confirmed cinema critics were pointing to similarities with Spielberg’s films of the 1980s. The links between Steven Spielberg’s masterpieces and Ernest Cline’s book were reignited by the movie’s latest trailer, published before the movie’s official launch at the end of next month.
Fashion For Digital Self – Glimpse Into The Future
Ready Player One is Steven Spielberg’s venture into the contemporary frontier of virtual reality-infused filmmaking and his long-awaited return to the all-out blockbuster territory. Interesting is that Cline has never tried to hide that his inspiration in writing the book was in large part driven by Spielberg’s movies.
The filmmaker returned the favour stating, in a recent interview, that Ernest Cline’s novel brings a ‘tangible glimpse’ into humanity’s future. Moreover, Cline’s novel aligns with his believes that in a not so far future we will be living in augmented and virtual reality environments.
Fashion For Digital Self – The Next 30 Years
The utopian/dystopian fiction world described by Cline and envisioned by Spielberg gains substance in the new footage from Warner Bros studios, giving us a glimpse into the virtual world that the main character, Wade Watts, inhabits and the Oasis, the virtual world that he escapes into.
According to the director, the aim was to avoid presenting the AR and VR environments as the super drugs of tomorrow now, but rather as another potential for our future.
The AR/VR technology presented in the novel is much more advanced than what is available in today’s AR/VR stores giving the impression that the gap between the fiction and reality is insurmountable and the ‘real life’ or the life as we know it is never going to change.
The ‘reality’ portrayed in the book/film points to a ‘peek’ of what the mixed AR/VR could evolve into, in the near future. Both, the AR and its ‘externalised’ experiences and the VR with its ‘internalised’ universe won’t come right away but permeate our reality, step by step, over the next 20-30 years.
The world around us has already started to ‘mature’ from its physical, tangible construct to a more digital form. Take, for example, the communication systems. We’ve evolved from physical letters to instant digital messages; from printed and framed photos to large photo albums in the cloud.
‘Digitisation’ continues to impact all industries, from transportation to entertainment and from education to fashion.
Fashion For Digital Self – From Online 3D to Blockchain VR Worlds
Fashion related, the early days of the internet saw the establishment of online fashion communities. Style aficionados or novices interested how to dress and develop a personal sense of style were grouping around style blogs, forums, and dedicated fashion websites.
Over the last decade, we’ve seen a growing interest in online virtual worlds such as ‘Second Life‘ and ‘IMVU‘. These platforms let individuals enhance their self-identity with digital layers when immersed in the virtual worlds.
Just like in the movie, digital worlds allow participants to customise their selves as avatars or 3D persona and further let their digital-self interact, shop, communicate, and socialise with others.
The latest technological advancements in augmented-virtual reality and blockchain, in particular, are taking humanity a step closer to Spielberg’s vision. This is the case with Decentraland, a new VR world running on the blockchain.
Decentraland comes closest to the ‘Ready Player One’ virtual reality. Its advanced VR platform is powered by Ethereum’s blockchain and lets users create raw materials, construct buildings, objects, enjoy experiences, exchange goods and communicate. Even more, in Decentraland’s virtual reality world users can monetize content, such as goods, experiences, services and more complex applications.
Fashion For Digital Self – Self-Identity Congruence?
Virtual communities have millions of members around the world and virtual fashion markets that are running hundreds of millions of dollars each year. These digital worlds are brimming with endless possibilities as beyond digital garments, it seems the main value individuals find in VR worlds is the capacity of reaching self-identity congruence (actual-ideal) by constructing digital selves.
For fashion and personal luxury brands, the VR worlds remain to be explored and understood. Brands must investigate the next generations of fashion consumers. Must understand if the moral, heritage and craftsmanship value perceptions – just to name a few – are retained by consumers of virtual fashion goods and if the power of branding is the same in the AR and VR environments.
Is it the self-identity congruence that drives them towards digital worlds or the appeal in constructing new digital-self lies in the VR environment’s capacity of giving anyone the power to become a fashion diva, a business-savvy entrepreneur, or a doctor. Or even all three, at once.
Moreover, as technology advances and digital natives age, individuals will seek cloud-based digital solutions for their end of life, where the digital-self can be accessed and updated from anywhere. Perception is reality but only time (research) will tell.