A contemporary incarnation of philosophers' age-old "brain in the vat" conundrum is virtual reality, which has individual recreational uses as well as possible social applications, for good and for ill as my philosophy students quickly recognize. One promising use for VR is bringing the world to elderly, handicapped, or house bound people. A doctor in San Francisco is finding that her work with VR headsets in nursing homes not only alleviates patients' loneliness and depression, it is also helping patients with dementia re-engage with the world. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-switch/wp/2016/11/17/this-physician-is-using-virtual-reality-to-treat-patients-with-dementia/?utm_term=.64bff7fd0e46
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