10 Astonishing Uses For Virtual Reality

Monday, September 12, 2016

10 Mind Blowing Uses For Virtual Reality

Virtual Reality

Technology experts predict that - within the next few years - virtual reality will become one of the fastest growing industries of all time. Part of the reason for this is its remarkable versatility…. Virtual reality can be used in loads of different ways, from training surgeons to creating a new adult experience.

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Virtual reality (VR) has been an idea waiting for technology to catch up for decades. We are now decidedly at the knee of the curve, as hardware, software displays and sensors are actually delivering on the promise.

While still on the bleeding edge, VR is starting to also deliver on actual applications. Here we explore a few of the most obvious ways VR will impact our lives.

10. Space Exploration

In the realm of space exploration, there is probably nothing that could equal the real thing when it comes to travelling and exploring beyond our world. That said, probably no other activity requires as much training as becoming an astronaut.

“Simulated environments have always been important in astronaut training,” said Jason Crusan, Director of NASA’s Advanced Exploration Systems Division.

Mars 2030 Experience

Now, programs like the Mars 2030 Experience are available for VR platforms including the Oculus Rift, Google Cardboard, and Samsung VR Gear. Such work is allowing the exploration of such environments to be experienced by anyone with access to VR hardware, not just those at NASA.

“Beyond practical uses for training, virtual reality offers us a compelling method to share the work we’ve been doing to design sustainable human missions and to inspire the next generation of pioneers in space,” said Crusan.

In the future explorers in their own living room may be able to help catalog and find important scientific discoveries, exploring moons, planets and other galaxies through VR.

9. Surgery

For doctors, and those training to be doctors, virtual reality technology offers the promise of being able to experience and learn complex medical procedures in a risk free digital environment. Surgical procedures can be practiced ahead of the real thing, and the experience can be shared.

Dr. Shafi Ahmed

For example, Dr. Shafi Ahmed – a surgeon, cancer specialist, and co-founder of virtual and augmented reality firm Medical Realities – surgically removed a tumour from the colon of a man in his 70s. That's a routine operation but unlike any other operation, when Ahmed and his team removed the cancer, a 360-degree camera rig mounted over the operating table captured the doctors' every movement in 4K and livestreamed it globally in VR.

8. Military

Soldiers are already using VR technology to guide precision munitions from drones piloted remotely half a world away.

soldiers with VR

Military training using VR is a hot topic in defence circles. DARPA has contracted traditional video game makers to develop warfare training systems. The US Marine Corp famously used a modified version of Doom II to teach new recruits. Although they are training for deadly situations, VR allows soldiers to practice and refine their skills in a safe, controlled and less expensive environment.

While the utility of virtual reality as a means to train troops is clear, there are critics, as increasingly war-like simulations are used as pure entertainment. Such realistic war game gives us only a partial, and perceptually molded view of life on today's battlefield.

7. Tourism

Imagine being able to visit Rome, Machu Picchu and Kyoto, all in the same day. With VR, this will be possible. Already, museums are sharing their collections digitally (willingly or not), and lower fidelity methods of travelling around the world already are here by using Google Maps.

Back To Pompeii VR

Interactive exhibits are also picking up VR technology, so users can experience what it is like to visit the past, examine art in detail and look into the future of a proposed development.

6. Film

For movie makers VR is a new frontier. Already the Sundance Film Festival has a special category, New Frontier,  where virtual reality submissions can enter.  "New Frontier is obviously just one part of the festival," Adi Robertson writes in Wired, "but since last year, virtual reality has been big enough to merit a collection of the weirdest, darkest, and most sublime excursions that we’ve taken into other worlds."

Sundance VR
Sequenced - Image Source - Sundance VR

Virtual reality allows viewers to become immersed in the film, seeing through the eyes of the characters, and looking at the scenes as if they were actually there. In conventional movies, the director dictates your focus of attention. An aerial view cuts to a medium shot cuts to a close up—giving you no say in what you see. But virtual reality puts you in charge. A headset allows you to observe any aspect of a setting and, in some cases, even affect the way the story unfolds depending on where you look. And depending on the technology, you may even be able to interact with the scene, picking up objects for inspection and more.

According to the Wall Street Journal, "VR is rewriting the script for Hollywood."

Companies like HBO, Disney, Electronic Arts, LucasFilm, Pixar and Industrial Light and Magic, are all actively researching and developing VR film titles.

Whether or not VR is just the next generation of 3D movies or something more remains to be seen, but the possibilities are very interesting to say the least.

5. Sports

At this year's Rio Olympics, Canada's CBC network experimented with VR broadcasting a number of events. The app promised to app gives you the best seats in the stadium without having to leave the house.

VR sports

The NBA and the NFL are also bringing this technology to their teams and fans. Their executives are doing everything they can to enhance the audience experience, and this is one of their alternatives. The Dallas Cowboys are even using Virtual Reality as a training module.

With VR headsets, players are immersed in a 360-degree virtual environment, allowing them to read and react to plays like they do in practice, except this kind of practice doesn’t involve pads or real contact — something ideal for players working their way back from injuries.

4. Crime Scene Investigation

Police crime scene investigators (CSIs) traditionally gather and use evidence to recreate the precise sequence of events that occurred during a crime. Part of this reconstruction process is photography and hand sketching.

Crime Scene Virtual Reality

But photos and video give only a limited picture of the crime scene, restricted by the photographer's field of view and subject to their interpretation of the scene and the importance they place on different pieces of evidence.

VR technology is now emerging that could enable the CSI investigators to capture and relay a much more immersive and representative picture of crime scenes, using 3D imaging, panoramic videography, artificial intelligence and virtual reality. In the courtroom, VR could be used to teleport whole juries to reconstructed crime scenes, and live the experience they are deciding on.

3. Therapy

Medical and psychological therapeutic applications for VR are vast. Recently, Duke University researchers found benefits of virtual reality technology for paraplegics.

Patients using VR headsets tasked to move through a stadium as a soccer player were able to regain some brain functions associated with moving their legs. Incredibly, of eight patients tested, each regained some control and four were upgraded from full paraplegics to partial paraplegics using such immersive virtual reality therapies.

Applications have also been created for using VR to treat anxiety, PTSD and other neurological conditions. Autism is another key area where practicioners are looking to the technology to help with therapy. In one study, virtual reality was used to successfully train high functioning autism patients how to respond to social cues and conditions.

2. Shopping

Buying things online will take on a new level once VR is applied to the task. From trying on clothes with a virtual avatar, to looking through your next house, VR is becoming very prevalent in the world of shopping.

eBay launched what it called the world's first virtual reality department store in Australia. Shoppers can now look through thousands of products without leaving home.

Retale VR

"We believe that virtual reality can have the same massive impact as mobile," says the CEO of an online shopping startup company. Retale VR's Christian Gaiser says, "Our team thinks that VR has changed the game for shopping by providing consumers with a really immersive environemnt."

The jury is still out, but virtual reality could be the next big thing in e-commerce after the mobile shopping boom.

1. Gaming

In the video below, the main source for this post, gaming is not the number one mind blowing use for virtual reality, but we think this is a glaring omission. (Based on the comments on the video's page on YouTube, we are not alone in pointing out the oversight.)

Elite Dangerous VR game

With Oculus Rift, the HTC Vive and Sony Playstation leading the way, gamers are already getting to experience some of the most cutting edge virtual realty experiences. Game titles like Elite Dangerous, Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes, and Minecraft VR are causing a lot of excitement, despite the fact that they are not quite as fully developed games as others available for consoles today.

In the future, expect to see many of your favorite gaming titles remade in virtual reality too.

As we have previously written, VR is about more than gaming though.

The real - 1. Porn

There have been two computer uses that have continued to push the boundaries of technology. One is games, discussed above, and the other is undeniably, porn. In fact, right or wrong, without pornography, the internet as we know it today, would not exist.

Online pornography is huge in terms of the money it spends and makes.  According to Forbes, in 2010, out of the million most popular (most trafficked) websites in the world, 42,337 were sex-related sites. That’s about 4% of sites. From July 2009 to July 2010, about 13% of Web searches were for erotic content.

virtual reality pornography

More and more these companies are looking to VR for their next big push.

This year, sites like Pornhub have provided viewers with 360-degree content, creating a more immersive experience, and certainly it is only the beginning.

SOURCE  Alltime 10s

By  33rd SquareEmbed


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