Virtual reality, technology of the future?

Virtual Reality, the technology of the future - Iberdrola

What is virtual reality (VR)?

Virtual reality or commonly abbreviated VR is a technology that allows the user to interact with the environment in the virtual world and is simulated by a computer capable of generating a three-dimensional atmosphere to give the user the impression that ‘he’s is in the real world.

What is the history of the development of virtual reality (VR)?

Virtual reality stems from a vision prototype built by Morton Heilig in 1962 called Sensorama. Sensorama was created to present the experience of watching a movie in a way that it feels real by involving different senses, in this case the senses of seeing, hearing, smelling and feeling. An earlier virtual reality technology was the Aspen Cinema Map, created by MIT in 1977. The program was a rough simulation of the city of Aspen, Colorado, where users could walk around in one of three styles: summer , winter and polygon. . The first two items are based on photographs, as the researchers actually photographed all possible movement across a cityscape in the two seasons, and the third is a basic three-dimensional model of the big city. In the late 1980s, the term “virtual reality” was popularized by Jaron Lanier, one of the modern pioneers in this field. Lanier, who founded VPL Research in 1985, had developed and built the then popular “sunglasses and gloves” system. In general, virtual reality has been in development for a long time, starting in the 1800s to be precise. Mid 1980s – Start using the term ‘virtual reality’. Jaron Lanier, founder of VPL Research, has started developing virtual reality gear, including the goggles and gloves you need to experience virtual reality. Developed for six decades with the help of investor funds, VR can now be enjoyed on a large scale at an economical price, using high quality and easily accessible equipment.

What are the components of a virtual reality (VR) device?

The composition of the components of a VR device, namely the VR headset, is shaped like a diving bezel, but with the lens closed. The part that looks like the scuba goggles is called the VR box, a place to place a smartphone that works to project a virtual image. Virtual reality with this smartphone is a standard version of the VR device. On the other hand, VR headsets that already use cutting edge technology such as the Oculus Rift no longer use a smartphone, but there is already a screen that displays videos and virtual reality images that can also be connected to a computer via Bluetooth.

The 4 important elements of virtual reality are:

1. Virtual world, content that creates a virtual world in the form of a scenario or script.

2. Immersion, a sensation that gives users of virtual reality technology the impression of being in a real environment that is even fictional. Immersion is divided into 3 types, namely:

• Mental immersion, gives mental users the feeling of being in a real environment.

• Physical immersion, through which the user physically feels the atmosphere around the environment created by virtual reality.

• Mentally immersed, giving the user the feeling of dissolving in the environment generated by virtual reality.

3. Sensory feedback, functions of transferring information from the virtual world to the user’s senses. These elements include visual (sight), audio (hearing) and tactile elements.

4. Interactivity, which is responsible for responding to user actions so that users can communicate directly in a field of fictitious or virtual world. The user sees a pseudo world which is in fact dynamic images. Listeners hear realistic sound through headphones or speakers. By means of a helmet, a glove and a walker, all the movements of the wearer are followed by a system which reacts accordingly, so that the wearer feels they are feeling a real situation, both physically and psychologically.

How does virtual reality (VR) work?

Virtual reality works by manipulating the human brain so that it looks like feeling virtual things looks like real things. You could say that virtual reality is the process of removing the real world from around people, after which the user feels led to a virtual world that is completely disconnected from the real world. To do this, of course, several additional devices are needed. If you want to experience a virtual reality world, you need at least one VR headset.

What are the advantages of virtual reality (VR)?

In general, many people buy VR technology for gaming purposes. This goal is also supported by the number of producers creating virtual reality for playing games. With the aim of making users feel the real atmosphere of game events. However, in addition to playing games, virtual reality also has other advantages. The other advantages are as follows.

1. Space exploration

Virtual Reality (VR) helps budding astronauts do exercises and simulations in space. The combination of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) technologies allows NASA astronauts to appear in space.

2. Military exercises

Virtual reality (VR) technology also works for military simulations. The military world needs real marksmanship training, so the use of VR is very suitable to facilitate military activities. Like the show that was held in the United States, namely The Virtual Training and Simulation Summit in the United States. During the show they can practice shooting, strategizing, bomb defusing and various other military related matters.

3. Medical needs

This technology can also help healthcare professionals diagnose a variety of conditions that are generally difficult to treat. Medical companies are providing medical training for doctors, allowing them to see the inside of the human body with realistic simulations. It can also improve the quality of nursing care, which was difficult in the past. One medical company using this method is Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CLHA) in the United States.

4. The automotive world

Ford, a company active in the transportation industry, has started to use virtual reality (VR) to simulate design and test products. In 2015, Ford performed a 3D virtual reality (VR) simulation at the ACM SIGGRAPH event led by Ford Vice President Elizabeth Baron. In addition, the use of virtual reality (VR) in the transport sector can also be used for vehicle simulations.

5. Company

The Selfridges Market in London once promoted watches with virtual reality (VR), so that potential buyers could try on products with the feeling of wearing a real watch. A fashion company, Balmain, has also launched a virtual reality (VR) program. Visitors can use virtual reality (VR), which features a clothing design sketch by Balmain Creative Director Olivier Rousteing, designed into a 5-minute show. The event entitled “My City of Light” was held from April 16 to 29, 2018 at the Balmain store in Milan, Paris.

6. Education

One of the main benefits of using virtual reality (VR) is to advance the world of education. One example we can use is the Unimersiv learning platform which already works with Oculus and Samsung Gear VR. Currently, Unimersiv has delivered applications with different types of simulations used to experience life in the past, study the anatomy of the human body in detail or even explore space.