First steps in VR

Lately, I’ve been putting alot of time and research into Virtual Reality (VR) technologies. My first experience with VR was at a showcase a few months back, where I was able to demo a few different experiences at various price ranges. Of the experiences I had, the Vive stood out to me as the most developed solution at this time.

I was able to try the Vive with an application called Realities.IO, which is an app that sends users to various real world locations. After a short spiel by one of the developers, I don the headset and transported into space, with the earth in the center. I was able to walk around the earth and pan it around using the Vive’s hand controllers; Once I’ve found a location I liked, I was instructed to zoom in.



The location was at a Mayan temple in South America. The scene faded into view and I was instantly awed; I was able to walk short distances around the temple, and was also able to teleport short distances to places beyond the reach of the room I’m in. I couldn’t get over how real it all looked; Coming from software being in a flat surface of a monitor, this experience was able to encompass in my entire view, and my movements matched the movements on my ethereal character, standing on the steps of a Mayan temple I may never visit in my life. At one point, I kneeled down to get a closer look at some rockwork, and without thinking, reached out to touch it; A short moment of immersion that was broken because that rock was never there in the first place, but it seemed real enough to at least try.

Where I was; At least, where I was transported to in VR

The experience was over as quickly as it had began; The headset and headphones were taken off, and I was back in the conference hall, familiar with the murmurs and chatter of the space. But for that short moment in time, I could’ve convinced myself that I was somewhere else entirely.

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