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Think I Can Sync Up My Death with Google Calendar?

What is Elysium? Simply put, it is "The next generation of social media subdermal implant". This next generational idea was planted, molded and digitized by the Vancouver-based conceptual designer Desmond Wong

Desmond Wong is a recent Emily Carr graduate from the Industrial Design program. Like all fourth-year students before and beside him, Wong was required to create a thesis project that explored a concept through his chosen program. Via design and integrated media, Wong has spun a satirical tone into his social media-based thesis project, Elysium.

The Elysium Implant is a fictional device injected into the technologically-minded user's body, accessing and storing everything from hormone levels to bank account information. Although it is technically fictional, the implant is not without a realistic base in modern mechanics.  Wong states that the device was "inspired by emerging techonologies such as the implantable yeast fuel cell developed by UBC and the implantable RFID chip." 

Although Wong approached his project with "playful exploration", the serious undercurrent of his Orwellian device cannot be ignored. Through a series of YouTube specific ads, Wong has a created a wonderfully convincing world of youthful hybrid-humans who willingly and energetically integrate this device into their lives. 

There are four components to the Elysium enterprise, each referencing its own facet of 1984-inspired themes : 

1. Fertility Monitor

This sect monitors a partner's hormone levels and sends cellular telephone update to their mate, in hopes of conceiving in a timely manner.

2. Blood Alcohol Monitor 

Don't trust your own judgement after a raucous night on the town? This portion of Elysium also works with mobile devices to detect when a user's BAL is above the driving limit.  It then suggests alternative means to get home. 

3. Bio Digital Wallet 

This not only works as an Identification of device, but also checks and balances with the user's biodata to confirm ID and access personal financial data. With this, the user can purchase goods and while automatically updating their bank account numbers. A trip to No Frills will never be the same. 

4. Death Watch

My personal favorite component of the Elysium Implant, this monitors the user's heart rate. If it detects that the heart has stopped for more than five minutes, it automatically takes care of the deceased's accounts and send out their pre-written digital eulogy. 

A humorous commentary on the fusion of tech and bio, Elysium sharply critiques the non-chalant attitude of the plugged-in. 

Be sure to check out more of Wong's design work, especially if you are within a Vancouver postal code.




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Welcome to the SIM Centre

The Social + Interactive Media Centre is a new research centre that supports a wide range of applied social, interactive and design projects. Funded by a 5-year grant from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), the centre offers BC companies a way to tap the design, creative and technical expertise of Emily Carr faculty and students.