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The Luke Collector: A Metaphysical Tool

One of the most prominent feature of mobile technology (smartphones or tablets) is to allow for location-aware applications. The lucky combination of a handheld computer (the mobile device) with a bunch of sensors and among these a GPS device produces a unique platform for new, more and more powerful tools.

Among these new breed of mobile tools there is the “Luke Collector”, the new entry in the Mathema innovation factory. The Luke Collector is an app conceived to allow a person – the collector- to get objects or events in the real world and to transmit them to a Central Station in the form of digital messages. Imagine that any people with a mobile may become a potential collector of any piece of reality, considered relevant from any point of view. The Luke Collector so is the tool to transform any portion of the surrounding reality in some kind of digital recording, i.e. some king of virtual reality. The Luke Collector is a sort of device to cross the borders between the reality domain and the domain of an artificial reality. This cross-domain operation is accomplished through the mediation of a human being – the collector- who will select the reality to be transformed and the perspective to  interpret it.

The potential of this tool is obvious: it may be reduced to tractable bits of information the hardest part of the world: houses, streets, trees, bridges, mountains, monuments and so on without limits.

In a sense the Luke Collector is an astonishing example of a metaphysical tool acting on any real thing (“ens” in Latin) to produce an abstraction of the essence and of the individuality of the thing.

The benefits are also evident. It is countless the number of applications that may be developed to exploit the “Big Data” collected by the Luke Collector but among them there is a particular category that deserves to be specially mentioned: the location-aware applications. In fact, a mobile device moving in a pre-collected reality will produce the other way magic, producing virtuality while living the reality. An example will make the concept quite clear. Suppose to have collected all gas stations in your city and the a prominent bit of information is the current gas cost per liter or gallon. When you drive your car in the same city with a Luke Detector you will be alerted to join the closest and cheapest gas station on the route. That’s simple, obvious and beautifully symmetric.

Thank you again Luke, for this achievement!

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