Regarding the risks, do you believe they would pertain to scattered short-duration dives (say for example 4 hour dives twice a week), consistent short-duration dives (for this lets say 4 hour dives every other day) or consistent long-duration dives (maybe 6+ hour dives every other day, if not every day)?
Since people commonly spend 8-10 hrs/day 5+ days/week at work sitting in chairs, I don’t think any of these usages of a FDVR system would pose health risks. Even if you spent 8 hrs/day 7 days/week in VR, you’d have 8 hrs/day ordinary waking time to exercise, bath, eat, etc.
The health risks I outlined would, I guess, become a factor if FDVR became a 15+ hr/day activity taking up all you waking time.
That prospect is mind-boggling. It almost sounds like waking and sleeping all while in a perpetual lucid dream. (Inception...Is it weird that made my spine crawl? heheh)
The key idea here is that NREM is physiologically necessary for mental alertness – if you don’t get it several episodes of it about once every 24 hrs, the brain just isn’t nerochemically OK, and will, though a robust feedback system, eventually force itself to get it. REM sleep appears to have an important function, also, related to forming long term memories and maintaining emotional health. So while VR can simulate physically impossible things like superhuman running, jumping, or flying, it can’t simulate never having to sleep. However, as long as the user gets adequate high-quality sleep, they don’t need to leave VR to do it. So instead of a daily cycle of sleep - wake up - do non-VR things - don VR gear - do VR things - doff VR gear - don non-VR things - sleep, you could sleep - wake up – do VR things – sleep.
A get a bit of a creepy feeling from this prospect, because it involves near total withdrawal from ordinary, non-VR living. It reminds me of a subgenre of dystopian scifi novels and movies popular in the 1980s.
Regarding the tending of sleep and exercise, how would the FD device be able to take care of these?
In imagining a “perfect FDVR” device, I assume that not only would it be able to prevent your skeletal muscles from activating when you felt like they were in VR, it would also be able to make them move in controlled ways without you being aware of it in VR. This would allow the system to put your body thought a precisely designed isometric
workout. So you could have a VR experience of days of slacking, while your body is conditioned as if you were working out 8 hrs/day in a gym!
It has crossed my mind numerous times whether or not we would be able to utilize lucid dreaming to further or gain skills, depending on if our brain would recognize the acts as a continuation in the process of sorting and understanding memories, experiences, emotions, aspirations, etc.,or if it sees the dream as a new experience altogether.
I think that things experienced in dream, whether the dream are lucid (that is, the dreamer is aware they are dreaming) or not, don’t provide much real training in the activities remembered as occurring in the dream. My conclusion is based on personal experiences: for example, I’ve dreamed of playing the violin beautifully, but upon waking, found I still played that instrument poorly.
Whether a combination of waking and dreaming experience of an activity enhances learning about that activity is a difficult question of answer in a sound scientific way, because it’s difficult to determine whether especially effective learning about an activity causes dreaming about that activity, or if the dreaming causes the learning to be especially effective. In my personal experience, almost always when I focus intently on some activity, I then dream about it – my dreams are essentially a continuation of my waking experience. I suspect that the dream play a useful role in helping me remember the day’s activities, but are not “additional practice”. Often, the dream are weird and unrealistic, emphasizing in a bizarrely exaggerated way some usually minor detail of the waking experience. While the dreams may (though I know of no scientific support for the hypothesis) be of subtle importance in learning the activity, their role is very different than the waking performance of it.