Virtual vs. Reality

So when is reality better than virtual? Always! Always?
Can virtual ever be better than reality? Indeed, I think it can be.

Here are some things I enjoy better au virtual:

  • The Gutenberg Bible – yes, I’ve stood in front of one of the Gutenberg Bibles. It was under glass and I could see just two pages. And while the original artifact is amazing…the digital version is soooo very much more accessible. I can turn the pages. I can see curatorial comments and even see areas enlarged.

    Nothing is more precious than the actual relic. But for my purposes, the virtual is more useful.

  • The Virtual Microscope – imagine, medical students being able to study virtual slides online. No more microscopes to maintain. No more delicate slides with fragile material that is impossible to maintain. The ability for professor to create interactive tutorials and mark specific points of interest. Universities sharing slides across campus, state lines and countries. No need to imagine…it exists…thanks to Bacus Labs. See an example from UT Medical Branch – Gastrointestinal Nutrition Slides. Requires PC and IE and a download of an active x control.

    I never knew healthy liver cells looked so purrrrty.

  • Christmas Toy Shopping – Seriously! Why in the world should I ever fight the crowds again and race around town…when I can sit in the comfort of my home and find every toy my kids will ever need. Better yet, I get to read what other consumers, just like me, really think about these toys. Only challenge…is remembering to buy more toys for the kids than for myself!

So, what do you think? Is there ever a time when virtual is better than reality?


  1. Ahhhh…how could I forget VS??? Too bad there isn’t an easter egg to bring up sunglasses and an “I’m accessible” tattoo on his forehead.

  2. Well this definitely wouldn’t fall under better. In fact I am not a hunter at all, but I am sure you’ve heard about the idiots that are trying to get virtual hunting approved. Way to go Texas! Boy am I proud.

  3. Ari – so very, very true! Taxes are so much better online. And balancing the checkbook.

    Keith – a unique example…poor Bambi!

    Andrea…I’m glad (ewwwwwww) to learn about froguts (groooooooossssss)…I hated dissecting frogs…and this online version was so realisic I was right back in 7th grade biology again. I remember convincing my lab partner to do the cutting…I just couldn’t do it. Meanwhile, I made an orgami frog, pinned him to a dissection tray and drew a simple version of his little froggy guts.

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