Patterico's Pontifications


Body-Swapping Now

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:45 pm

Via Hot Air Headlines comes a link to a fascinating story about inhabiting other’s bodies . . . today:

Swedish researchers presented evidence that the brain, when tricked by optical and sensory illusions, can quickly adopt any other human form, no matter how different, as its own.

. . . .

The technique is simple. A subject stands or sits opposite the scientist, as if engaged in an interview. Both are wearing headsets, with special goggles, the scientist’s containing small film cameras. The goggles are rigged so the subject sees what the scientist sees: to the right and left are the scientist’s arms, and below is the scientist’s body.

To add a physical element, the researchers have each person squeeze the other’s hand, as if in a handshake. Now the subject can see and “feel” the new body. In a matter of seconds, the illusion is complete.

If you could inhabit another person’s body, whose would it be and why?

28 Responses to “Body-Swapping Now”

  1. I would inhabit someone with a disability … so I can better understand.

    aunursa (0f9171)

  2. Lance Armstrong or Michael Phelps so that I could understand what real discipline feels like, and so I could gauge the level of my own failure.

    Lupo the Butcher (fd7c16)

  3. Whoever’s tagging Megan Fox these days…

    What? Don’t you judge me…

    Scott Jacobs (90ff96)

  4. I would inhabit the body of Scarlett Johansson–but only 20 minutes at a time.

    Official Internet Data Office (85f70b)

  5. OIDO, don’t brag.

    Eric Blair (8f93a0)

  6. some rich liberal hollywood dimwit, so i could divert most of their money to the NRA, with a small stipend* to me, for services rendered.

    *just enough to pay the property taxes and upkeep.
    (yes, i’m keeping the land: where else can i build ranges?)

    redc1c4 (27fd3e)

  7. Kathy Ireland. I’ve wanna be in her for almost 2 decades.

    Wickedpino (a69e7e)

  8. Now the subject can see and “feel” the new body.

    If only that were true. So many bodies, so little time.

    Craig (66bbca)

  9. Would you put your brain in a robot body?

    Techie (07c8ee)

  10. Todd Palin.

    otcconan (d6afba)

  11. Would you put your brain in a robot body?

    Just pretend I do the whole Sealab 2021 skit…

    Scott Jacobs (90ff96)

  12. I would inhabit someone with a disability … so I can better understand.
    Comment by aunursa — 12/1/2008 @ 9:12 pm

    I used to do that sort of thing back in Boy Scouts for 3-5 days at a time; tying down an arm or leg, wearing earplugs or blindfolds. Missing my right arm sucked bad, but the worst were emulating deafness and blindness. That exercise came in handy years later when I busted up a leg.

    With this technique, I’d like to “inhabit” a tall person. Can’t really see any other way to do it. Stilts and arm extensions wouldn’t give proper feedback.

    Uncle Pinky (834163)

  13. …with giant chainsaw hands?

    Techie (07c8ee)

  14. I: Robot

    The ultimate treatise on the subject.

    Techie (07c8ee)

  15. Barack Obama so I could commit suicide

    jk (8cfb7a)

  16. Michael Douglas, obviously.

    Dagwood (23a52b)

  17. I’d so disappointed at the level of these responses.

    /I’d take Seal, now that he’s Mr. Heidi Klum. And I don’t know anything else about him.

    Pious Agnostic (291f9a)

  18. Obviously we have no gamers here. It’s what we do.

    Try being an American soldier on Peleliu

    Cobb (68fd91)

  19. Would Ace or Patterico go into Andrew Sullivan’s body and do a walk on the wild side for a little while? Okay, that was not even funny, it has a massive eeeewwwwww factor to it.

    Sick Twisted Thoughts (dcebbd)

  20. Cobb,

    I’d prefer John 117, if we’re going that direction. :)

    Scott Jacobs (89480a)

  21. otcconan: You beat me to it! As well as being the sole man with (ahem) the privilege, not only does Todd have a woman he can talk politics with (I live in S.F., so…) he also is (unlike moi) a durn good-looking guy who’s also a sports champion.

    Pious Agnostic: Both Seal and Heidi Klum are lucky. Outside of those scars on his face from a battle with lupus (which he isn’t compelled to surgically remove), he’s a fine-looking guy too. That alone doesn’t make him Klum’s equivalent, but his added musical talent does (No, I don’t know what “Kiss From a Rose” means, but I still like it). Musical talent is big when it comes to appeal to hot chicks. Ugly, decrepit guys like Mick Jagger (Jerry Hall, among others) Keith Richards (Patti Hansen) Axl Rose (Stephanie Seymour) The Cars’ Ric Ocasek (Paulina Porizkova) are living proof.

    (A sense of humor is good to have, too. I still haven’t gotten over the fact that Bobcat Goldthwait lasted more than a week as Nikki Cox’s beau.)

    Even if no female attention came from it, I would like to have the ability to play the music that is in my mind that I am unable to translate through my fingers or my voice — I even suck at Guitar Hero. At the age of 93, Les Paul has forgotten more guitar licks than the aggregate of young guitarists working today may ever learn. If I could be hooked up to Les for a week or so, and could hire top-flight musicians to back me, I could record a legendary pop-rock record.

    Even so, it may not sell many CDs since is CRAP in vogue nowadays, IMHO.

    L.N. Smithee (2a141b)

  22. Jay Mohr is now married to Nikki Cox.

    kimsch (2ce939)

  23. kimsch wrote: Jay Mohr is now married to Nikki Cox.

    I know. But Jay Mohr is a handsome man. They’re a visual match. If you see Nikki and Jay on the red carpet, you don’t think to yourself, “What is s/he doing with him/her?”

    OTOH, Bobcat Goldthwait…

    L.N. Smithee (2a141b)

  24. Official Internet Data Office wrote: I would inhabit the body of Scarlett Johansson–but only 20 minutes at a time.

    Or you could be Benicio Del Toro and possess it for two minutes.


    L.N. Smithee (2a141b)

  25. L.N. – true.

    I would probably like to inhabit Angelina Jolie’s body – even with the tats. We’ve rented Wanted and will probably watch it tonight. mmm Brad…

    kimsch (2ce939)

  26. I have a great Les Paul record called Read My Licks, and his duets with my other fave guitarist (Mark Knopfler) are terrific as well. Knopfler is the last in a long line of great guitarists who always understood and paid homage to the originators and geniuses of the form (Keith Richards, Jeff Beck and Clapton I include on this list).

    Dmac (e30284)

  27. Obama, so I could reverse all of his stated policy proposals.

    Bleepless (3352ff)

  28. Anna Kournikova, so I could be both beautiful and really healthy and athletic.

    Patricia (ee5c9d)

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