Ghost Dives are an internet based activity in which one pours one's Ghost, the conscious entity that drives the body (For more information on Ghosts see article Ghosts & Shells), into the internet in order to navigate it as though it were physical rather than virtual space.
About Ghost DivingEdit
When Ghost Diving Cyberspace appears to the diver to be three dimensional, physical space rather than mere data presented to a screen. While diving the diver is represented by a "Dive Counter", a small, flat, circular object with a triangle in the middle representing the divers facing and his or her name revolves around the edge of the counter. Divers not based on organic matter such as the Tachikomas appear to be exempt from this with their normal physical form being represented in 3 dimensions even within cyberspace as shown throughout the 2nd gig.
It is unclear as to whether full body humans can dive or not although it is suggested in the first gig when Togusa and Aramaki use what appears to be a specialized neck brace to interact with a machine rather than use its keyboard. The extent of their cybernetic modification is never hundred percent confirmed so it remains uncertain as to whether dives are achievable to humans.
Uses and HazardsEdit
Ghost Diving is seen to have numerous advantages over using a computer to navigate the net although it is also more hazardous. Diving provides a more physical viewpoint of the internet allowing one to literally see holes in obstacles such as firewalls. It also provides a means of accessing other persons consciousnesses via hacking through their cyborg components, the cyber brain in particular, allowing the diver to view their target persons memories, alter them and even take control of that person for limited periods of time. It should be noted that all of the listed are serious criminal offenses although Section 9 appears somewhat exempt from this rule showing their extraordinary standing.
Although the benefits are clear so are the risks. Entities such as viruses which would normally be confined to a computer or network can be a threat to consciousness itself as displayed at the end of the first mission of the Play Station 2 Stand Alone Complex game where a Jameson type cyborg has its mind "fried" by such a virus. The risk also exists that hackers me be back/counter-hacked resulting in reversal of the intended effect. There has also been reference to degradation of individual consciousness resulting in part as a result of separation from the divers shell and also from the sharing and often accidental merging of consciousness between users of the net.