Virtual Reality

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Virtual reality is an artificial environment that is created with software and presented to the user in such a way that the user suspends belief and accepts it as a real environment. On a computer, virtual reality is primarily experienced through two of the five senses: sight and sound.
Virtual reality can be divided into:
•The simulation of a real environment for training and education.
•The development of an imagined environment for a game or interactive story.

Key Elements of a Virtual Reality Experience:
•Virtual World: A virtual world is a three-dimensional environment that is often, but not necessarily, realized through a medium (i.e. rendering, display, etc.) where one can interact with others and create objects as part of that interaction. In a virtual world, visual perspectives are responsive to changes in movement and interactions mimic those experienced in the real world.
•Immersion: Virtual reality immersion is the perception of being physically present in a non-physical world. It encompasses the sense of presence, which is the point where the human brain believes that is somewhere it is really not, and is accomplished through purely mental and/or physical means. The state of total immersion exists when enough senses are activated to create the perception of being present in a non-physical world. Two common types of immersion include: Mental Immersion – A deep mental state of engagement, with suspension of disbelief that one is in a virtual environment. Physical Immersion – Exhibited physical engagement in a virtual environment, with suspension of disbelief that one is in a virtual environment.
•Sensory Feedback: Virtual reality requires as many of our senses as possible to be simulated. These senses include vision (visual), hearing (aural), touch (haptic), and more. Properly stimulating these senses requires sensory feedback, which is achieved through integrated hardware and software (also known as inputs).
•Interactivity: The element of interaction is crucial for virtual reality experiences to provide users with enough comfort to naturally engage with the virtual environment. If the virtual environment responds to a user’s action in a natural manner, excitement and sense of immersion will remain. If the virtual environment cannot respond quick enough, the human brain will quickly notice and the sense of immersion will diminish. Virtual environment responses to interaction can include the way a participant moves around or changes in their viewpoint; generally through movements of their head.

There are a wide variety of applications for virtual reality in which TACTO can assist. There include the fields of: •Architecture
•The Arts
•Data visualisation
•Treatment of Mental Illness

What’s the difference Between Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality?
Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality are two sides of the same coin. You could 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 to inhabit.
In Augmented Reality, the computer uses sensors and algorithms to determine the position and orientation of a camera. AR technology then renders the 3D graphics as they would appear from the viewpoint of the camera, superimposing the computer-generated images over a user’s view of the real world.
In Virtual Reality, the computer uses similar sensors and math. However, rather than locating a real camera within a physical environment, the position of the user’s eyes are located within the simulated environment. If the user’s head turns, the graphics react accordingly. Rather than compositing virtual objects and a real scene, VR technology creates a convincing, interactive world for the user.
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