Presence Through the Eyes of a Child

Using a head-mounted display and body tracking suit, entering into a virtual reality, you can experience yourself as a child of about 4 years old.  You look into a mirror, or directly down towards your own body, but you see the child body instead.  The brain appears to be remarkably flexible in quickly accepting the proposition that your body is … [Read more...]

What is it like to be a woman

Another intriguing experiment by Mel Slater's group from Barcelona[1], this one sure to get a good whack of popular media coverage. 24 (supposedly normal) healthy blokes put on virtual reality goggles and were 'transported' into a scene that contained two virtual women. They then induced the illusion of body transfer, which has been shown before … [Read more...]

Mel Slater on Inducing Illusory Ownership of a Virtual Body

The question as to what is and what is not part of your body seems to be a trivial one to answer, it is 'obvious'. But this is not the case, since it is possible to induce very simply the illusion of quite dramatic body changes and distortions. The most famous is the 'rubber hand illusion' where you can temporarily feel that that a rubber hand is … [Read more...]

You gotta hate it when your next experiment has already been done

We didn't see this until very recently - after we had spent some time working out what we thought was a groovy paradigm to see if one can induce illusory ownership over a rubber hand by making it seem to be under voluntary control - a motor-visual congruence type illusion. It seems that Mel Slater et al have done it and have done it in a more … [Read more...]