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VR time machine helps an inventor relive his past

Jon Fingas
·Associate Editor
·1-min read

Life is made of fleeting moments that you may easily forget, but one inventor might have found a way to remember it... much of it, anyway. As PetaPixel reports, Lucas Rizzotto recently developed a virtual reality “time machine” that lets him revisit any moment recorded using camera-equipped Snap Spectacles. He just needs to dial in a Back to the Future-style “destination time” to see what he was doing at a given moment from his perspective, complete with flashy effects.

While it’s ultimately stereoscopic video, Rizzotto said it feels like something more. You “remember everything connected to that moment,” he said. It’s akin to being your “own ghost,” following your own life without knowing exactly what will happen.

This wouldn’t be an easy project to recreate, and it’s not an ideal solution whether or not you can write VR software. Spectacles only record up to a minute at a time and have limited storage, so you aren’t going to capture everything even if you wear the glasses every waking moment. And then there’s archiving all that footage — Rizzotto needed a massive pile of hard drives to preserve everything.

It’s still a clever project, and it also raises philosophical questions as wearable technology matures. Privacy is a concern, of course — Google Glass sparked an uproar in 2013, and it would only get worse if people knew you were recording everything. And if that wasn’t an issue, would you really want instant access to your past knowing you could indulge in obsessions or stumble across a painful memory? Rizzotto appreciated the feelings the VR time machine evoked, but he was well aware of the dangers of being “stuck in the past.”