A recently uncovered patent reveals that Microsoft is considering the idea of avatars whose appearance depends on users’ actual health. Microsoft’s has commented on the discovery with:
“Avatar Individualized by Physical Characteristics is an avatar generator for a virtual environment that reflects a physiological characteristic of the user, injecting a degree of reality into the capabilities or appearance. An undesirable body weight could be reflected in an overweight or underweight appearance for the avatar. Only requisite health levels are allowed to compete in a certain competition level. A dedicated gamer could exercise for a period of time until his health indicator gadget shows a sufficiently high health/health credit in order to allow reentering the avatar environment. Health would be determined through a variety of nonvolitionally obtained information, like readings from a pedometer, pulse-rate measuring device or some kind of health smart card.”
Microsoft also confirmed that avatars shaped by “psychological and demographic information such as education level, geographic location, age, sex, intelligence quotient, socioeconomic class, occupation, marital/relationship status, religious belief, political affiliation, etc.” might be in our future.
For someone like me this might be a concern. I bought a Mass Effect hoodie last night, and I’m worried that after this update, my Avatar may be too big to wear…