Here's how it works. Rather than a precious gem, the ring displays something even more precious - the number of hits you get on Google when you check for reference to your name. Every night, you put it in its little cradle connected to your computer. Then, you type in your name in the application window; the application then googles you and displays the number of hits - also called "attention carats" - on the face of the ring.
(Google Vanity Ring video)
Here's the intellectual explanation, for those of you who can't appreciate art projects just by looking at them:
While in earlier times richness and importance were equal to the amount of money or jewels someone possessed, in a post information society it's the attention you get from the worlds people, that counts. Being in people's mind means being important, whether they think about you in a positive way our not doesn't matter. And what people have in their mind is what they read in the media. In the future this will mean, what they read/see on the net. Every content creator that copies and pastes your name will rise the value of your virtual mirrored importance. And there is a hard mechanical algorithm on the net, that extremely objectively measures your appearance, it's called Google...
The ring is a special project by Markus Kison, who is now looking for a company to produce it commercially. I know this reminds me of something science-fictional, but I can't think of what.
Via Shelley Batts' Retrospectacle; be sure to visit her site and look to the left side for the "Vote for me" button so you can click on it and vote for her so she can continue her PhD studies in neuroscience. For all you intellectual property right fans, she's also got her own 'embattled blogger wins fair use rights' story.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 10/15/2007)