Pharaohs and Baby Boomers: The Quest for Virtual Immortality

Immortality. From cavemen to Pharaohs, generations have strived for the ability to leave an accurate representation of their lives. Today’s baby boomers have achieved something so valuable that relatively few historic figures could enjoy. They are the first generation that have the technology to live in a world of virtual immortality. A world where photos and home movies visually define their lives and legacies.

People are storytellers by nature and are fascinated by the lives of those who have come before them. Genealogy is as popular to Canadians as ice is to hockey. Today TV viewers immerse themselves in the lives of the characters of “Downton Abbey” and “Mad Men” to understand the era and lives of their forebears. Ancestry.ca is all the rage as amateur historians search out photos and records of long lost relatives that made a difference in times of war; scandals and royal history.

There has been a cultural shift when it comes to genealogy. People no longer just want to read the diaries of their ancestors. They want to see their lives in the context of the era and how their experiences relate to it, creating a direct connection between the generations as never seen before.

Thanks to the internet, cameras, video cameras and social media, the technology is available to follow an individuals life from birth to death. Baby boomers have a say in their legacy and work with companies to preserve their memories in ways that are important to them. A visual method of storytelling for their children, grandchildren and future generations to understand and enjoy. It’s a redefinition of history and celebration of life.

The New York Times recently wrote an article expressing that photo organizers are internationally recognized as a popular and growing industry, particularly in North America. Photo organizers offer a simple, virtual or print, method for people to visually explain the context of their lives, cradle-to-grave. An opportunity that was denied to families in the past.

Baby boomers are flocking to their closets to dig out birth certificates and photos of their childhood, dance recitals, pee wee hockey games, graduations and wedding ceremonies to explain the timeline of their lives. It’s important these stories are preserved, explained and not left in the bottom of a box to deteriorate. Stories are honored. No longer lost, untold or forgotten.

Snap Shot Solutions are experts at capturing an individual’s visual life story. “We can now do genealogy in reverse, using your photos to tell and share the history you already know,” said Daina Makinson, president of Snap Shot Solutions a member of the Association of Personal Photo Organizers (APPO) and one of only 10 certified photo organizers in Canada. “I work directly with individuals to customize their own legacy. By digitizing their photos, transferring slides and home movies to DVD, we help bring their precious stories back to life. Customized storybooks, slide shows, collages and canvases are valuable methods of sharing their lives with family, friends and future generations.”

The cultural shift and advent of technology encourages boomers to visually relive their lives and pick out those moments that define them. This virtual immortality simplifies genealogical searches and enables future generations to fully understand their ancestors lives in the context of their era, thoughts and stories in a manner that was never available to anyone in the past.

The pharaohs had cold statues and pyramids. Today its a warm feeling of belonging.

 

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