Virtual Reality
Virtual Reality

Virtual Reality (VR) is the use of computer technology to create a simulated environment. Unlike traditional user interfaces, VR puts the user inside an experience. Instead of seeing a screen in front of them, users can become immersed and interact with 3D worlds. By simulating as many senses as possible, such as sight, hearing, touch, and even smell, the computer is transformed into a guardian opening to this artificial world. The only limits to near-real VR experiences are the availability of content and inexpensive computing power.

The immediately recognizable component of Virtual Reality is the head mounted display (HMD). Humans are visual beings, and imaging technology is often the biggest difference between immersive Virtual Reality systems and traditional user interfaces. For example, CAVE automated virtual environments actively display virtual content on room-sized screens. While it's fun for people in universities and large laboratories, consumer and industrial wearables are the wild west. With the huge number of hardware and software options emerging, the future of wearable devices is unfolding, but it is not yet known. Concepts such as the HTC Vive Pro Eye, Oculus Quest and Playstation VR take the lead, but there are players like Google, Apple, Samsung, Lenovo, and others that may surprise the industry with their new levels of immersion and usability. No matter who stands out, the simplicity of purchasing a helmet-sized device that can work in a living room, office or factory floor has made HMDs the centerpiece when it comes to Virtual Reality technologies.

What is the difference between Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality?

Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality are two sides of the same coin. You can think of Augmented Reality as VR with one foot in the real world: Augmented Reality simulates artificial objects in the real environment; Virtual Reality creates an artificial environment for living. In Augmented Reality, the computer uses sensors and algorithms to determine the position and direction of a camera. AR technology then overlays computer-generated images over a user's real-world view, rendering the 3D graphics exactly as they appear from the camera's perspective.

In Virtual Reality, the computer uses similar sensors and math. However, instead of positioning an actual camera in a physical environment, the position of the user's eyes is located in the simulated environment. If the user's head turns around, the graphs react accordingly. Instead of combining virtual objects and a real scene, VR technology creates a convincing, interactive world for the user.