In the age of deepfakes, could virtual actors put humans out of business?

In film and video games, weve already seen whats possible with digital humans. Are we on the brink of the worlds first totally virtual acting star? When youre watching a modern blockbuster such as The Avengers, its hard to escape the feeling that what youre seeing is almost entirely computer-generated imagery, from the effects to the sets to fantastical creatures. But if theres one thing you can rely on to be 100% real, its the actors. We might have virtual pop stars like Tupac Shakur performing from beyond the grave at Coachella in 2012. Weve seen the fake Obama video is a key example. Could technology soon make professional actors redundant? Like most of the examples above, the virtual Tupac …

Harry Potter: Wizards Unite Isnt the Next Pokmon Go. Good

When developer Niantic launched Pokémon Go in the summer of 2016, it did so at maximum velocity. The game’s blend of simple mechanics and next-level augmented reality sparked a months-long stretch of virality, followed by years of low-key dominance. Niantic partnered with WB Games for its followup, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, which debuted Thursday on iOS and Android. And while it checks many of the same boxes—source material with a rabid fanbase, innovative AR—it’s decidedly its own experience. That’s no small praise. It must have been tempting to turn Wizards Unite into Pokémon 2.0. Just sub in fantastic beasts for pocket monsters, wizards for trainers, and ride the fan service all the way to Gringotts. But while there are some …