- Tomislav S. Šola
Like never before, our technology made us blur the limits between what reality is and what is a mere illusion. We have always played with that. Any story told, or a book read can transfer us into another reality, but now with Second life, 3 D imagineering, with interactive games, we become immersed not only into the picture but into the happening. The Omnimax was the final stage of classical game with teasing our sense of being lost in other reality than our own: the screen and the sound have had us as their focus and captured all our attention, but that is nothing compared to what we are exposed to now or what we can rightly expect to happen. If used for play and pleasure, for gaining insight into worlds otherwise unknown, - that may advance our participation in living, but nobody is there to tell where we are lost in another reality. I believe, museums of technology are likewise uncles or grandfathers, - always on our side and yet willing to guide us and count with some of our natural confidence. We want adventure, but also guidance and secure spots where earth beneath our feet is the one and only, our safe point of departure and return.
If one combines these circumstances with the fact that we, unlike any civilisation so far, live in the age of the Great Greed, where no other option is left, it is somewhat likely that many will fall victim to the rising insecurity. People will try all sorts of flights from reality, some becoming addicts to illusions, others becoming utterly selfish and lonesome and still, others will fall prey to all kinds of collective hysteria of extreme ideologies or extreme beliefs...
In this sense, museums will have an enormous role to play, particularly those on technology, if they become willing and able to explain the world around us. They can see that we are not lost to the humanist ethics, and that offers reliable framework to any wavering and tottering individual without taking his or her freedom in return for this security.