Technology and dying

One of the issues for me, as a Computer Scientist, is how technology can be used to support the telling of stories, the sharing of experiences, and how it can facilitate reflection and personal perspectives on the final intensely personal, yet shared and socially impactful experience that we will all encounter.

Good technologies should empower people to communicate more effectively what they wish to, whether it is to project an image of themselves that they want the outside world to remember them by, to share details of their conditions to help themselves, their families, or even strangers, or simply to provide a space in which they can explore their emotions, thoughts and perspectives on their lived experiences.

The advent of digital recording has made the capture of images practically free, and facilitated simple sharing with restricted or public groups of people.  The explosion of mobile phones into semi-ubiquitous personal devices has led to unprecedented levels of ability for people to capture their innermost, immediate reactions, whilst editing software allows them to recraft raw material into stories of their own choosing. We were interested to see how these technologies might be used in these circumstances, and have encountered a range of perspectives on their use, from the structured to the unstructured, the personal to the abstract, and the reflective to the educational.

Russell Beale.

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