This is a terrific primer on VR, its origins, and its future promise. Peter Rubin deftly introduces and explains the tech in a way that mere mortals can grok, and he does so with a storyteller’s flair and an endearing sense of humor. But this is not some glossy, long-form advertisement for VR. For reasons you’ll have to pick up the book to understand, it’s also (necessarily) a deft introduction to some fascinating thinking and research in biology, psychology, sociology; and it draws connections among such disciplines that are really only beginning to be explored. Plus there are warnings. And all of that is before you even get to the sex parts. This is a page turner. Lively, enlightening, fun, endearing, thought-provoking. I hope Rubin continues to cover and explore the frontiers of technology’s promise for human social needs and desires. He is a worthy prophet.
Rubin is a terrific storyteller, full of wit and insight, with a great sense of pace. He's the perfect guide through a moment in time that might be remembered as being as important as the advent of talking movies in the 1920s. You won't need to care about technology all that much to get a thrill about the possibilities he lays out, whether its visions for how we'll date to how we'll sense another person's feelings. But the most surprising part of the book is how much the stories here tell you about the quirks of our psychology that define us as human—and how technology might tweak them for the better.
You can argue it's too early to reading a book on such a rapidly developing technology, but then you'd be missing out on one of the best tour guides out there. Peter Rubin's tone is as hilarious as it is insightful, breaking down a complex technology but - more importantly - its impact in the future of things like community and relationships. Plenty of tech writers try to be both profound and funny about our future. Rubin actually pulls it off. Well-sourced and smoothly crafted - Summer reading that also manages to be essential.
Great book that outlines why VR and AR didn't take hold earlier, some of it's implications, and some very likely future uses and downfalls. Easy to read, written very conversationally, perfect for anyone who isn't too technical but wants to know what's going on with all these weird headsets.
I worked with Peter at WIRED back in the day and I am so excited to read this book... VR is obviously a huge topic in Tech but a deep dive on what it means for us as a species is what we needed. I’m hoping this will spark a lot of important conversation moving forward.