Telepresence Frame: A Black Box for Life Support Patients

Someone finally found a good use for a digital picture frame. The Telepresence Frame by Revital Cohen displays a live-feed of a patient's vital stats for his or her entire family to see. Cohen, an artist studying the increasing relationship between humans and machines, shows through the frame that a patient on life support is made up of more than flesh and bones, and has become one with the gadgets surrounding them. That's nice and all, but what happens when the life support ends is downright freaky.


When the machines can no longer keep the patient alive, the stats on the frame flatline, just like you see on TV. However, the death of the patient does not bring with it the death of the frame; everything has been recorded on a black box, which rewinds to the beginning and plays the patient's life, on a loop. Now your family can sit around the fireplace, stare at the frame, and recount the good old days. "Oh look! That's when Timmy's blood pressure was 120 over 80! And he was still breathing! I miss that day."

Cohen has made a video of some of these patients describing what their machine-assisted life is like, and you can see a clip below. Just remember, before you complain that a minute of your time was wasted, these people are on freakin' life support.[Interactions via WMMNA]