Laotian Instrument, Phonsavon

"People want technologies that support and deepen the very differences that make one place distinct from another."

So asserts Richard Harper, the second Microsoft Research speaker coming to present here in Ireland.

Second Life illustrates the value of virtual real estate, and game developers have discussed for years how to synthesize a sense of location and history in virtual worlds.

But back in the real world, the long arm of the internet now embraces even locations that recent editions of Lonely Planet assure you are without connectivity.

Do we want, as Richard suggests, technologies that help us support and deepen differences between locations?  Whether it's between home and work, or between Ireland and Laos (both pictured here)?

Jim and his axeRichard Harper is visiting Limerick next Wednesday, on the 17th, to give a presentation at the University of Limerick at 19:30. I'd be interested to hear what he has to say. Here on the UL site you can register or read more.

What do you think of his thesis?