This month's speaker is Lilly Ryan! Lilly is a software developer, digital rights activist, and recovering historian from Melbourne.
She is definitely not a hologram.
People have been using technology to try to contact ghosts for over a hundred years. From ouija boards to EVP to the not-quite-unbelievable creepypasta you stumble across on a forum at 3am, the spirits of the dead are ever present in our imaginations and (maybe?) our servers.
Very soon, you could deliberately leave a ghost of your own! Research facilities are currently working to make our sci-fi dreams a reality, and let us live on digitally after our deaths. Trailing information in our wake every time we touch the Internet, it becomes increasingly possible to create a digital presence that will use these (and future) data points to respond and react to events after our deaths much as we might have in life.
But, as we grow ever-closer to building this reality, how should we think about our ghosts? Are they technically ‘us’? Are they subject to the law? Could a hacker spin up a doppelgänger to plague you in life?
To explore the answers to these questions and more, light some candles, and follow Lilly into the beyond.