Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Botgirl shops at Sears

My Virtual Model-1

I StumbleUpon'd My Virtual Model the other night. It's a shopping site that lets you view clothes from companies such as Sears and Speedo on a personalized 3D avatar created from your photo and measurements. Of course, I had to upload Botgirl's photo and give the site a spin. Somewhere along the way, the surrealistic aspect of the larger process stuck me like a ton of bricks:

- A human creates an avatar and projects thorough it into a virtual world

- A distinct identity emerges reinforced by social interactions

- The virtual identity leaps into the atomic world through blogs, social networks, instant messaging, etc.

- Finally, the line between physical and digital blurs entirely as Botgirl tries on clothes at Sears

I don't know why this experience seems so particularly absurd. But in some way it really brought to life the illusionary aspect of the Botgirl identity for me. Give it a try and see what it's like for you!


Camilla said...

I understand why you find it absurd. I do too. What a world we live in. The Virtual Model first debuted some years ago. Originally it was only used with Lands End. But Sears has since acquired Lands End, and so... (and the fine print at the bottom indicates that Best Buy is a participant as well. What would you try on at Best Buy? A television set?!)

I thought it was very cool to track my weight loss with it when I first found it. Because you can put in your exact measurements, you can "see" your body change. We cannot look objectively at photographs of ourself. But a virtual avatar which bears our exact weight, height, and measurements seems to be something we can "see" about what we look like, that we cannot get with a photograph.

I took a quick look, and it appears they have upgraded the site significantly. Where did you upload your picture? I only saw the part where you could create a more generic avatar. And how did you decide what measurements to use?

Anonymous said...

Botgirl, were you able to pay with Lindens? Because if not, Botgirl's going to have to get an atomic world credit card, and I bet there is someone out there who would give you one!

Botgirl Questi said...

princess i: go here to personalize body measurements. You'll need to register if you want to upload add a face image.

val: That's SOOOOOOO funny!!!!

Anonymous said...

Ha! I'd draw exactly the opposite conclusion - which I think points more to the illusory nature of "evidence" than to that of the self! :D

Camilla said...

OH, you did a much better job than I did at cutting out your avatar's head and hair, and scaling it properly to the Virtual Model's body size. Mine was a disaster!

Princess Ivory