Explaining Virtual Reality
Virtual reality (VR) is one of the biggest hype in the gaming community due to its immense potential of bringing the future of gaming closer to the hands of consumers everywhere. However, not many people truly understand how revolutionary virtual reality is in terms of not only gaming, but also how it may change our way of life! Due to this, here a nice little article that will give you the basics of virtual reality so you can get hyped up about it as well.
To understand what “virtual reality” is, we will have to first take a look at the term itself. The “virtual” part of the term implies that something abstract and unreal, while the word “reality” indicates something that is based on and exists in real life. Technically, both words contradicts each other... how can something be both abstract yet real at the same time? That’s exactly how the term “virtual reality” is born. When combined, the words give the meaning that something that is in actuality unreal, but feels so real that it can fool your mind in thinking so.
Virtual reality can be produced via a variety of means and different ways of accessing virtual reality will provide varying quality of your VR experience. For instance, most the VR head-mounted displays (HMDs) that you have been hearing so much about are basically only a part of the entire virtual reality experience as it mainly interacts with your visual and aural (hearing) senses. True virtual reality though, which we are inching towards one baby step at a time, will involve the entire body and all the senses we, as humans, possess.
In other words, to experience true virtual reality, we will need a multisensory device. This means that in addition to goggles or helmets, we’ll have a full body, sensor-covered VR suit that will allow us to virtually feel pressure, heat (or the lack thereof) and pain that our skins are able to sense. There are even companies going about attempting to create smells in the form of aerosolized “perfumes” embedded in a possibly futuristic VR helmet that can interact with our nasal sensors for an even more immersive VR experience. Incredible isn’t it?
That being said, virtual reality isn’t something that the gaming community should get excited about. This is because VR is an amazing technology that can be applied to a wide variety of fields such as architecture, sports, healthcare, arts, entertainment, engineering, education and military. In fact, researchers have already started testing out virtual reality-based training simulators on future surgeons and pilots, and from the results obtained, things are looking up indeed!
Hopefully, you are all psyched up about virtual reality now and are eager to give it a whirl. If you truly are, well, in that case, you should really give Google Street View a try. With it, you can travel to locations you never dreamed of going (or are unable to go to due to whatever reasons), such as the famous Mount Everest. Although it is technically not virtual reality, it has enough of the 3D aspect to offer you a nice idea of how virtual reality could be used in a context other than gaming. However, if you’re more interested in the gaming aspect, well, you could check out our blog post entitled Introducing the Ghost in the Shell Virtual Reality Experience that features a 360-degree YouTube video which will allow you to give “semi-virtual reality” a go.
To sum it all up, virtual reality is definitely something that will be integrated into the lives of future humans, much like how the internet has “taken over” the world. It is still in its infancy (somewhat) and there are still a lot of improvements that need to be made. However, virtual reality is here to stay and we might as well embrace it with open arms, so we could learn how to truly utilize this incredible piece of technology to, not only to enhance our entertainment experiences, but also for the good of the human race!