By| Editorial Team
Virtual reality or virtual realities (VR), which can be referred to as immersive multimedia or computer-simulated reality, replicates an environment that simulates a physical presence in places in the real world or an imagined world, allowing the user to interact with that world. Virtual realities artificially create sensory experience, which can include sight, touch, hearing, and smell.
Most up-to-date virtual realities are displayed either on a computer screen or with HD VR special stereoscopic displays, and some simulations include additional sensory information and focus on real sound through speakers or headphones targeted towards VR users. Some advanced haptic systems now include tactile information, generally known as force feedback in medical, gaming and military applications. Furthermore, virtual reality covers remote communication environments, which provide virtual presence of users with the concepts of telepresence and telexistence or a virtual artifact (VA) either through the use of standard input devices such as a keyboard and mouse, or through multimodal devices such as a wired glove or omnidirectional treadmills. The immersive environment can be similar to the real world in order to create a lifelike experience—for example, in simulations for pilot or combat training—or it can differ significantly from reality, such as in VR games.
Virual Reality Diverse Impacts:
Education and training
The usage of VR in a training perspective is to allow professionals to conduct training in a virtual environment where they can improve upon their skills without the consequence of failing the operation.
VR plays an important role in combat training for the military. It allows the recruits to train under a controlled environment where they are to respond to different types of combat situations.
VR is also used in flight simulation for the Air Force where people are trained to be pilots. The simulator would sit on top of a hydraulic lift system that reacts to the user inputs and events. When the pilot steer the aircraft, the module would turn and tilt accordingly to provide haptic feedback.
Medical personnel are able to train through VR to deal with a wider variety of injuries. An experiment was performed by sixteen surgical residents where eight of them went through laparoscopic cholecystectomy through VR training. They then came out 29% faster at gallbladder dissection than the controlled group.
The use of graphics, sound and input technology in video games can be incorporated into VR. Several Virtual Reality head mounted displays (HMD) were released for gaming during the early-mid 1990s. These included the Virtual Boy developed by Nintendo, the iGlasses developed by Virtual I-O, the Cybermaxx developed by Victormaxx and the VFX1 Headgear developed by Forte Technologies. Other modern examples of narrow VR for gaming include the Wii Remote, the Kinect, and the PlayStation Move/PlayStation Eye, all of which track and send motion input of the players to the game console somewhat accurately.
Heritage and archaeology
The first use of a VR presentation in a heritage application was in 1994, when a museum visitor interpretation provided an interactive “walk-through” of a 3D reconstruction of Dudley Castle in England as it was in 1550. This consisted of a computer controlled laserdisc-based system designed by British-based engineer Colin Johnson. The system was featured in a conference held by the British Museum in November 1994, and in the subsequent technical paper, Imaging the Past – Electronic Imaging and Computer Graphics in Museums and Archaeology.
Virtual reality enables heritage sites to be recreated extremely accurately, so that the recreations can be published in various media. The original sites are often inaccessible to the public or, due to the poor state of their preservation, hard to picture. This technology can be used to develop virtual replicas of caves, natural environment, old towns, monuments, sculptures and archaeological elements.
Several companies, including IrisVR and Floored, Inc., provide software or services that allow architectural design firms and various clients in the real estate industry to tour virtual models of proposed building designs. IrisVR currently provides software that allows users to convert design files created in CAD programs like SketchUp and Revit into files viewable with an Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, or a smartphone “in one click,” without the need for complex tiered workflows or knowledge of game engines such as Unity3D. Floored, meanwhile, manually constructs and refines Rift-viewable 3D models in-house from either CAD files for un-built designs or physical scans of already built, brick-and-mortar buildings, and provides clients with access to its own viewing software, which can be used with either an Oculus Rift or a standard 2D web browser, afterward.
David Em was the first fine artist to create navigable virtual worlds in the 1970s. His early work was done on mainframes at Information International, Inc., Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and California Institute of Technology. Jeffrey Shaw explored the potential of VR in fine arts with early works like Legible City (1989), Virtual Museum (1991), and Golden Calf (1994). Canadian artist Char Davies created immersive VR art pieces Osmose (1995) and Ephémère (1998). Maurice Benayoun’s work introduced metaphorical, philosophical or political content, combining VR, network, generation and intelligent agents, in works like Is God Flat? (1994), “Is the Devil Curved?” (1995), The Tunnel under the Atlantic (1995), World Skin, and a Photo Safari in the Land of War (1997). Other pioneering artists working in VR have include Luc Courchesne, Rnmnmita Addison, Knowbotic Research, Rebecca Allen, Perry Hoberman, Jacki Morie, Margaret Dolinsky and Brenda Laurel. All mentioned artists are documented in the Database of Virtual Art.