The compound is alive and lush with green growth. The building also seems to be breathing. Passing through the entrance feels like squeezing through an invisible membrane. Once through a great light filters in from the outside that seems almost brighter than natural, and you are overcome with a deep sense of calm. Electric vibrations begin to pass through your body, not as an explicit physical sensation but more as if having been plugged into a frequency that is emitting a deep energy into the pit of your belly. You take another deep breath, the surroundings exhale with you. A soothing voice from behind a reception terminal indicates for you and your companion to take a seat. One of the care staff will be with you shortly. You can tell that your companion is tense, but looking at them you get the feeling that they are grateful for your presence, even if they haven’t been so explicit about it. Given the nature of the facility, it is easy to understand why it is so difficult to foster any pleasant feelings at all.
The ‘Memory Cloud Apparatus’ came to live as collaboration with Ersta Hospice Stockholm to explore the future of end of life care. Based on extensive insight work we developed an experience, Future artefact and workshop that explores consequences and projects the impact of the future of immersive cloud computing. An exploration of a future when we will be able to store our actual memories in the ‘cloud’, granting the possibility for others to access a detailed digital version of our ‘physical’ selves.
This idea was born out of speculating the future of caring for patients with dementia, and how a person’s self could be preserved or better yet, understood by caregivers when being given treatment. We piggy backed on concepts like ‘singularity’, the idea stating that man and machine will eventually become one, opening up the possibility to download or upload one’s consciousness to machine based entities in order to surpass the limited lifespan and capacity of the human body as we know it. It seems far-fetched, but we can already see traces with how we build our social media profiles and construct the pieces of our digital selves, accessible by others, albeit using ‘simpler’ technologies.
Title : Memory Cloud Apparatus
Year : 2013 - ongoing, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Toronto
Role : Experience Designer
Is : investigating death and dying in times of immersive cloud computing
Should be : experienced as immersive narrative, future artefact and workshop
Will : be taking place in a hospice context