21 April 2006

Preaching to Avatars

I'm thinking ten years from now people like me will be preaching to avatars in a virtual simulation of a sanctuary. The preacher will get up in the pulpit and the gathered people will see her there. And she will start to preach. And the people will hear her. Even soldiers on distant shores may be present along with billions of connected machines who will take due note. The congregation will sing and pray and the Spirit will move. Over wires. Or wireless. Or however bits will be getting dispersed to electronic devices at that time. And the devices will be some sort of virtual reality simulators. Perhaps not even noticeable to the physical eye. Maybe even implanted in the brain . Or projected from the listeners glasses or contact lens.

If this sounds far fetched consider where are today. Even today musicians are going to a virtual online world called Second Life and performing in coffee houses or outdoor venues. They are playing for people who are not really there although these people can hear and appreciate their music. The audience is composed of avatars, digital representations of people sitting at desktop or laptop computers circa 2006. And progress on these virtual environments continues to be made. Nearly every month there seems to be some new development on this front.

Yep. Ten years from now people like me will be preaching to avatars. And the sermon will be some sort of video podcast of a sermon preached 8 days ago or 8 months ago. And the congregation may be composed of worshipers from Alexandria or Clarksdale. What an amazing time to be alive! Viva la revolution!

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