A Poe Pondering: ‘Cognitive Disruption in the VR Experience’

Speakers: Chris Miller, Todd Ogle, Ph.D., and Dillon Cutaiar

Cube, Moss Arts Center | Interdisciplinary Events

November 1, 2018 at 12:00pm

The horror, hoaxes, and humor of Edgar Allan Poe provide trajectories of thought particularly appealing in the design of Virtual Reality environments. But, what are the ethical implications of intentionally introduced cognitive disruption in immersive VR experiences? Where can Poe's spirit enhance, and what balance can we strike between the comfortable and the diabolical?

Christopher A. Miller is an archivist, digital collections manager, and computational ethnomusicologist currently serving as Digital Humanities Coordinator for the University Libraries at Virginia Tech. He has previously served as Southeast Asian Studies Bibliographer for Arizona State University Libraries; Curator of e-kiNETx and Cross-Cultural Dance Resources in ASU's School of Dance; Curator of Audiovisual Collections for the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix; and University Archivist at Radford University. Miller's audiovisual and document digitization projects have been funded by the US State Department Ambassador's Fund for Cultural Preservation, the British Library Endangered Archives Programme, the National Science Foundation, and Center for Burma Studies. Christopher has received fellowships for his research from Berea College (Appalachian movement and gesture) and the Freeman Foundation (Burmese and Pa'O manuscript traditions).

Todd Ogle is the Executive Director for the Applied Research in Immersive Environments and Simulations program at the Virginia Tech University Libraries. The focus of Todd’s research is seeking to identify and build upon the factors that lead to learner success in augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) based learning environments. Todd’s mission at the University Libraries is to provide a destination for students to discover, create and share their own creations in the form of games, simulations, virtual reality, and augmented reality experiences for learning and entertainment while having the informal interactions with interested peers, faculty, industry partners, and external researchers that are so valuable for student development and to apply immersive environments and simulations to the content creation and educational programs provided by the University Libraries, such as: content to be held in the University Library’s learning object repository, Odyssey; University Library instruction and student digital literacy programs; open educational resource creation; research and institutional data visualization; digital collections-building; and the Digital Humanities.

Dillon Cutaiar is a rising junior pursuing a degree in computer science with a minor in philosophy. He currently works as a software developer for VT University Libraries where he contributes to multiple virtual and augmented reality applications. Recently among these are Shakespeare's Garden - Virtual Reality and CISpy 2018. The former is a virtual performance arts experience based off of a previous work called Shakespeare's Garden, and the latter is an augmented reality learning program which encourages students to practice historical inquiry in the field.

Join us for additional Poe’s Shadows events!

Oct. 31- Nov. 4 - Poe’s Shadows: An Immersive Theatrical Installation

Oct. 31, 12 noon - A Poe Pondering: “Spatial Audio from Measurement to Reproduction”
Speaker: Mike Roan, Ph.D.

Oct. 31, 5:30pm - A Poe Pondering: “Fearsome Stenches and Whiffs of Disease”
Speaker: Melanie A. Kiechle, Ph.D.

Oct. 31, 7:30pm - A Poe Pondering: “Edgar Allan Poe as a Virginia Writer”
Speaker: Ashley Reed, Ph.D.

Nov. 1, 5:30pm - A Poe Pondering: “Reading Poems as Theatre”
Speaker: Tom Gardner, Ph.D.


“Poe Ponderings,” a free series of short talks held in conjunction with Poe’s Shadows. All talks will be approximately 15 minutes long and will be held in the Moss Arts Center lobby, by the mural wall.

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