Virtual Reality: Soon a Reality

The ledge I'm standing on has a strange existential duality. In the physical realm, it's a thin strip of red, millimeters above the floor of a pristine white booth in a basement in Shoreditch, London where the 3D tinkerers and technologists (of everything from 3D film to 3D printing) at Inition keep their toys. In the digital realm, which, thanks to the Oculus Rift wrapped around my head, my senses have decided is the more real, the ledge is the only thing between me and a 300-foot plunge.

The voice from the other realm telling me to reach forward with my arms belongs to Inition founder Andy Millns. He's concerned I'm going to bang my head (or perhaps his Oculus Rift) against the booth wall. That's easy for him to say. My arms are otherwise engaged in an inept flailing in a simultaneous attempt to not fall off (inside the game, a fail state) or over (inside the booth, an ultra-fail state).

Virtual Reality has been a human aspiration for a long time now. With the invention of Video Games and their commercial success, we have taken the idea of Virtual Reality and transformed it into an entertainment medium.

In fact, it has inspired many TV shows and Movies on the subject, with varying degrees of immersion. However one thing they tend to overlook is how the Human brain handles something like Virtual Reality. These stories are based around the idea of a complete neural immersion, as opposed to sensory replacement like the above article introduces.

The whole article is about a simulation designed to give you vertigo. A lot of attempts at true Virtual Reality Sensory Replacement, sight specifically, have ended in nausea and extreme disorientation. Your brain has a hard time orienting itself with single sensory replacement, especially visual. Due to how our brains processes visual sensory information, it tends to compensate for information it may not need or want.

However, it requires some serious tweaking of light levels, understanding of this visual compensation, and graphics quality to overcome that cap. Supposedly, this new device has done that. Now, I'm not in a position to test it personally, but if they truly have done that... Then expect Zombies to get a lot more terrifying soon here.