Virtual 3d reality: Google AR & VR | Home

Google AR & VR | Home

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Experience the world in a whole new dimension

Augmented, virtual, and immersive reality expand how we experience the world and access knowledge. They allow you to take in information and content visually, in the same way you take in the world.

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By blending the digital and physical worlds, immersive experiences transform how we shop, communicate, explore, and create.

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Make sense of the world around you in real-time

Use your phone’s camera to translate text on images in the real world such as menus, storefronts, documents and more – you can even listen to the translated text out loud! With Lens you can translate text in over 100 languages, so you’ll never feel out of place no matter where you are.

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Break down language barrierswith AR Glasses Experiences

Use translation and transcription to deepen connections with the people around you through mutual understanding of language

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Language experiences come alive when delivered in your line-of-sight, helping you communicate with someone who speaks a different language or might be deaf or hard of hearing. See how we’ve been testing new capabilities on one of our AR prototypes.

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Use translation and transcription to deepen connections with the people around you through mutual understanding of language

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Language experiences come alive when delivered in your line-of-sight, helping you communicate with someone who speaks a different language or might be deaf or hard of hearing. See how we’ve been testing new capabilities on one of our AR prototypes.

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Discover the world’s treasureswith Google Arts & Culture

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Immerse yourself into the world’s richest history

Experience 3D models, AR filters and objects, and VR exhibitions from over 3,000 museums, art galleries, and other cultural institutions no matter where you are. Explore the ancient Pyramids of Meroë in Sudan, journey along the Great Barrier Reef, or gain a deeper understanding of Ukraine’s art and culture.

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Explore the history of Sudan’s Pyramids of Meroë

Take a virtual walk through the ancient capital of the Kushite Kingdom, with over 200 stunning pyramids of Meroë – a UNESCO World Heritage site.

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Journey along Australia’s Great Barrier Reef

Immerse yourself into the ocean and see the largest living structure on the planet, developed in partnership with Underwater Earth.

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Discover Ukraine’s art and culture

Experience Ukraine’s history through an immersive collection. Explore Street View imagery collected before the war, wander virtual art galleries and see 3D models of architectural landmarks in AR.

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Discover more than 40 architectural 3D models of cultural landmarks, developed in collaboration with Skeiron, a small Ukrainian team of preservation experts. These landmarks include St. Sophia’s Cathedral, Palanok Castle, and the National Opera of Ukraine.

Make the world your canvaswith ARCore

Create and deploy world-scale, immersive augmented reality experiences with ARCore and Geospatial API

Developers and creators can now seamlessly create and publish AR content in over 100 countries without ever having to be there. Whether you are looking to build a multiplayer AR game, improve local navigation, or design immersive world-anchored experiences, with ARCore and Geospatial API you can explore and develop endless possibilities.

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VR in Home Design

VR in Home Design

Virtual Reality (VR) has become one of the leading trends in recent years. There is no doubt this technology will dominate the market in the coming years. Real estate agents, designers and people who plan to remodel their houses, apartments or offices can all find an ideal solution in VR. What options do we have for utilizing VR in home design, and how does it work? This and other questions will be covered in our article.

In contrast to AR (augmented reality), in which we can observe a house or apartment model added to a real-world environment through the device screen (iPhone, iPad, Android devices) or AR glasses, VR allows you to do a deep dive into the virtual model world.

How can you get such a model? You can get a virtual model of a real house or apartment with the help of special 360-degree cameras like GoPro MAX, Samsung Gear 360, Nikon KeyMission 360, Kodak PIXPRO SP360 4K, Ricoh THETA V or Insta360 Titan. Their prices range from $270 to $500, but if you are ready to invest heavily, there are many more expensive solutions on the market. In most cases, though, a standard phone camera that supports shooting 360° images may do the job. Why pay more?

GoPro MAX

Image Source: https://gopro.com/en/us/shop/cameras/max/CHDHZ-202-master.html

This variant is ideal for realtors and people who want to sell or lease their property. Having prepared the sequence of 360° images, a house or an apartment can be viewed by a potential customer without the need for a personal visit to the property. There are many websites that can be used for showcasing the VR model, including VeeR, Kuula and Facebook 360, among others.

The main disadvantage of this, however, is that you are unable to remodel the house in VR view, unless you actually move the furniture or paint the walls, then repeat the scanning process. You will be working with a photo as opposed to an editable model.

Live Home 3D

Home Design Software

Mac

Windows

iPhone / iPad

Is it possible to create an editable virtual model? Sure, interior design apps like Live Home 3D can help you with this task, but we will revisit this later in this article, once we review the special headsets you may need for viewing virtual models.

Of course, the model can be seen on the screen of practically any device, but it is more fun to use a special device to immerse yourself fully into the world of VR, and there are plenty of headsets that can help you do that. We’ll start with the big players and finish with the less expensive options.

Meta Quest 2

Image Source: https://store.facebook.com/quest/products/quest-2/

Meta Quest 2 (previously Oculus Quest) is the headset that started the current hysteria. First developed by Palmer Luckey, it was later bought by Facebook, which invested in it massively. Prices range from $400 for the 128 GB model to $500 for the 256 GB model.

This model works successfully at a resolution of 1832×1920 pixels per eye with an 89° field of view (FOV). And, what’s more, it tracks the movement of both your head and body and translates it into VR with highly realistic precision. No external sensors are required.

HTC Vive Cosmos

Image Source: https://www.vive.com/product/vive-cosmos/overview/

VIVE Cosmos offers the ultimate experience but comes with a hefty price tag of $699 plus approximately $130 for the controllers. The device has a 110-degree field of view (FOV) and is equipped with the incredible RGB LCD screens, each offering a per-eye resolution of 1440×1700 (2880×1700 combined resolution). VIVE Cosmos supports Vive Wireless Adapter, so it is probably the most powerful solution if you want to go wireless. Its main purpose is game play, but this headset can be easily used to explore the models uploaded to such services as SketchFab™ or Gravity Sketch.

Microsoft HoloLens 2

Image Source: https://www. microsoft.com/en-us/hololens

This is an ideal solution if you plan to combine VR (virtual reality) and AR (augmented reality) into something called MR (mixed reality). It works without any cables as it comes with a built-in Windows 10 system. It runs on batteries, has great tech specs and includes all the latest innovations from Microsoft, including AI (artificial intelligence). However, the price is not cheap─$3,500 for the device only, which could prove to be a great obstacle if you are on a budget. And this is the cheapest device from the HoloLens product line. More about Microsoft HoloLens 2.

There is also PlayStation® VR, which is compatible with the PlayStation 4 or 5 home video game console. At a price of $349, it has become one of the best-selling VR headsets.

Yes, there are. Phone-based VR headsets could be a nice budget-friendly solution if you do not need expensive devices. As the name implies, these headsets work mostly as a holder for your smartphone. All you need to do is record 360º videos or panorama images of your house and upload them to your phone─quite simple.

Google Cardboard

Google Cardboard is the easiest and least expensive way to try virtual reality as it is just a piece of folded cardboard with some inexpensive embedded plastic lenses. Priced from $10 to $20, this is the king of all budget headsets.

There are many other headsets on the market, but we discussed only the most popular ones.

Apps like Live Home 3D allow you to create virtual models on Windows 10 or later, Macs, iPhone and iPad devices. These models allow unlimited modifications and can be exported to 360° images and videos. The app’s rich toolset allows you to create a virtual model of a house, apartment or office, regardless of the complexity.

A model created in such a way also has a distinct advantage: it can be saved in one of the supported formats (say, FBX or OBJ) and uploaded to such services as Trimble 3D Warehouse™ or Sketchfab™. The latter is especially interesting if you want to see a 3D model of the house in VR (virtual reality) using a VR headset (such as the Meta Quest 2, HTC Vive Cosmos or Microsoft HoloLens 2) or a WebVR browser.

VR technology can be really useful and is constantly developing, and we hope you enjoy using it in your life.

Revised: February 2023

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Virtual reality – what is it?

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Everyone who uses the Internet or plays computer games has heard about virtual reality at least once. But what is it, what possibilities does it hide in itself?

Virtual reality (VR, from Latin virtus – possible, potential and realis – existing, actual; English virtual reality, VR) is a world that does not actually exist, artificially created with the help of technical means. With the help of virtual reality systems and tools, a person, immersed in it, can perform the same actions as in real life, interact with the outside world. Simply put, VR is a simulated reality that creates the illusion of the user’s presence in the artificial world, his interaction with the objects and objects of this world using the senses – ears (hearing), eyes (sight), skin (touch), etc. Virtual reality is also called artificial, electronic, computer reality and is often confused with augmented reality. But augmented reality (English augmented reality, AR – “augmented reality”) only complements the real world, introducing elements of the artificial into it, while the world of virtual reality is completely artificially created.

The term “artificial reality” first appeared in the late 1960s. One of the first virtual realities created was the Aspen Film Card, invented in 1977. In this virtual reality, it was possible to walk around the city of Aspen, choose different ways to display objects, including winter and summer urban landscape in this virtual reality. The more well-known and widespread concept of “virtual reality” was introduced by Yaron Lanier in 1989.

There are several types of virtual reality: passive VR is just an image and its accompanying sound, a person in such VR does not control anything, surveyed VR – in such VR a limited choice of sound and image scenarios, as well as human actions is possible, interactive VR is the user himself selects scenarios, manages such VR.

Full immersion in virtual reality and interaction with its objects is achieved only when using special devices. Such devices that provide complete immersion in virtual reality and imitate human interaction with it using all the senses (eyes (vision), ears (hearing), tongue (taste), nose (smell), skin (touch), vestibular apparatus ( sense of balance and position in space, acceleration, sense of weight)) are called VR systems.

These are:

  • imaging systems,
  • sound systems,
  • tactile simulation systems,
  • control systems,
  • systems for direct connection to the nervous system.

Virtual reality imaging systems

Imaging systems that form and display an image in virtual reality include helmets and glasses (which are basically the same thing), as well as special monitors.

The VR helmet, more like VR goggles, has one or more displays for displaying an image, separately for the left and right eyes, a lens system that corrects the image geometry, and a system for tracking the position of the device in space.

[1]

The virtual retinal monitor transmits the image directly to the retina of the eye, as if it hangs in front of the eyes, in the air. It is rather closer to augmented reality, because there is an overlay: elements of virtual reality are superimposed on objects in the real world. But under certain conditions (for example, the almost complete absence of light), the effect of presence in VR is possible.

Virtual Reality Sound Systems

Hearing-assisted user orientation in virtual reality is provided by modern acoustic systems that localize sound sources. The use of various technologies that imitate sound in the real world (reflection of sound, its passage through obstacles, etc.) creates the effect of human presence, the sound is as close as possible to the sounds in the real world.

Haptics and Virtual Reality Control Systems

Haptic systems include devices called Heptics force feedback.

VR is controlled by contact and non-contact methods. With contact, the user uses “substitutes” for the keyboard and mouse – a steering wheel, pedals, a gun with a target designator function. With the contactless method, control is carried out by virtual reality gloves, and hand positions are also monitored using several video cameras. Also, a virtual reality suit is used for control, part of which are gloves, which tracks the position of the body in space, and can transmit sensations of tactile contact, temperature changes.

Direct connection systems to the nervous system

These systems (sensors) transmit data directly to the nerve endings and directly to the brain. But they are very expensive and do not fully provide the quality of data transfer for full immersion in VR.

Application of virtual reality

Initially, virtual reality technologies were used only for military purposes – for training soldiers, simulating battles, but recently they have been successfully used in various fields. For example, virtual 3D reality in production allows teaching professions where the use of real mechanisms and devices is life-threatening or very costly (for example, in machine and aircraft building, train driving, etc.).

In architecture, VR (virtual reality) is used to recreate future buildings and their elements, interior modeling.

In medicine, VR helps to train the skills of surgeons, and real operations are also performed using virtual reality devices.

The possibilities of VR in the field of games, entertainment and education are limited only by the imagination. The most common are all kinds of virtual reality attractions, virtual reality for PC: 3D games and simulators (for example, flight and car simulators, real life simulators).

[2]

Despite the already impressive advances in virtual reality simulation, it is still too early to talk about full reproduction of the real world: full 3D virtual reality is not yet possible. Even the most modern VR devices, which provide the transmission of sounds and images, actions and tactile sensations, cannot yet provide a full immersion effect in VR, which would completely repeat reality. But progress does not stand still, every year new technologies appear and devices for VR are improved, including virtual reality for smartphones, and, who knows, perhaps very soon a virtual world will appear that is indistinguishable from the real one.

V. G. Suprunova

This page uses images and (or) video materials from the following sources:

  1. http://www.potapkin.ru/news/ID_4600.html
  2. https://donanimgunlugu.com/oculus-rift-ile-dunyadan-kopacaksiniz/

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How will virtual reality change the familiar world, help cure diseases and create a new universe for humanity?

People have stopped fighting in the real world. The problems of beauty and self-perception are forgotten, because a virtual avatar allows you to make your body and face the way a person sees them. Work, school, cinemas, concerts, sports and computer games, doctor visits and travel – for all this you do not even need to leave the room. It is enough to put on a VR headset and go on virtual business. Thanks to virtual reality technologies, which are already actively penetrating into all spheres of life, this may be the not-too-distant future. When an expensive toy became the most important part of production, what virtual reality technologies are already used today and what will VR be like in a few years? Lenta.ru talks as part of the CyberReality project.

Ready Player One

“Telescopic television set for personal use” is how American cinematographer and inventor Morton Heilig described the world’s first virtual reality helmet, the Telesphere, which he patented in 1960. Outwardly, the one-of-a-kind device was strikingly similar to the headsets that are produced today. However, the Telesphere had a noticeable drawback: it could not track the user’s movements. Therefore, the helmet could be compared to a TV set worn on the head. And even though the device was a failure on the market, it had a huge impact on the future of the industry – it was not for nothing that the descendants dubbed its author the “father of virtual reality.”

Heilig did not immediately come to the compact helmet. A few years earlier, an American had invented a virtual reality machine called the Sensorama. The mechanical device was reminiscent of the arcade machines of the 80s in shape and size: fans, an acoustic system, and even odor emitters were mounted in it. The effect of presence was provided by a movable seat, which shook in time with what was happening on the screen. All this helped to completely immerse yourself in the content. The first testers could literally ride a motorcycle down the highway with a breeze and smell from the exhaust pipe. The groundbreaking technology impressed users, but not investors. Creating 3D movies suitable for this virtual reality machine was difficult and costly. Business did not believe in the idea, so the sensorama forever remained only a working prototype.

The commercial failure of both Heilig’s projects did not deter people who believed in his idea. In 1968, an American computer scientist, Harvard professor Ivan Sutherland and his student Bob Sproull showed the Sword of Damocles, the first full-fledged VR helmet that connected to a computer and tracked the movements of the user’s head. The invention bore little resemblance to modern helmets: it was so heavy that it had to be hung from the ceiling – hence the name.

The Sutherland system was soon taken over by the US government departments: NASA and the CIA began to invest in the development of the VR industry. At 1972, General Electric built one of the first flight simulators with the money of the military. The simulator looked like a cabin with three screens. They imitated the windows of an airplane and provided a 180-degree view. Five years later, American artist David Em, commissioned by NASA, created an interactive map of the city of Aspen, which users could navigate using the buttons on the keyboard. The ancestor of Google Maps consisted of photographs taken from a car and computer graphics.

Four years later, the first augmented reality glasses appeared. A device called EyeTap, which was invented by Canadian scientist Steve Mann, did not immerse the user in a fictional world, but added strokes on top of the real one. The owner of the glasses could see graphics or text against the background of existing objects – people, animals, houses. It was like how the Terminator saw the world from the cult action movie of the same name. True, EyeTap looked as if their owner was going to war with robots. The technology of the 80s simply did not allow to fit all the electronics into a small device: Mann’s invention occupied half the face and the entire back, as it was connected to a backpack with a computer that the user had to carry with him.

The developments of the creators of the first VR technologies were often criticized and ridiculed. The invention of the American scientist Thomas Furness was nicknamed “Darth Vader’s helmet”. The device was really huge and strangely shaped. At the same time, with its help, the pilot could control the aircraft using gestures, speech and eye movements.

When investors became seriously interested in VR, it became obvious that the technology would soon become mainstream. This was partly helped by the famous American scientist Jaron Lanier, who is credited with the authorship of the very term “virtual reality”. Later, Encyclopedia Britannica included him in the list of 300 greatest inventors in the history of mankind, and at the dawn of his career, at 1985, the 25-year-old developer, together with his colleague Thomas Zimmerman, founded the company VPL Research. The Americans developed glasses that were quite compact for that time with the futuristic name EyePhone, and with them they released Data Glove gloves – they were able to track hand movements in the digital space. Simply put, people saw the movement of their hands in virtual reality.

In the 1990s, video game developers became interested in VR technology. Virtuality Group came up with VR-enabled arcade games, and SEGA released the first VR helmet. At 19In 1995, Nintendo introduced the Virtual Boy console, which came with VR glasses. However, all these devices did not gain much popularity: there were few games, the graphics in them were poor, and the accessories were expensive.

By the early 2000s, large IT companies and users temporarily lost interest in virtual reality. But just ten years later, thanks to 18-year-old entrepreneur Palmer Lucky, a real revolution took place in this area. The young man was obsessed with electronics and computer games since childhood, he loved the science fiction films The Matrix and The Lawnmower Man. Parents – a car salesman and a housewife – earned little, so Lucky had to pay for his hobby himself. The teenager repaired the iPhone for a small fee and worked part-time as a gardener. He spent money on computer hardware and old VR helmets.

The then existing models on the market did not suit Lucky: helmets were heavy and uncomfortable, with a small viewing angle and high signal delay. Therefore, at the age of 16, a schoolboy in his father’s garage assembled his own virtual reality headset, the prototype of which he called PR1. The device was greatly facilitated by the fact that he relied on the computing power of the computer to which he was connected by wire. 90,003 90,002 84.1 90,003 $90,002 billion 90,003 90,002 can reach the VR market by 2028

Lucky’s invention caused a real stir: at first, the young man raised almost $2.5 million on Kickstarter, and a couple of years later Facebook bought his company for $2 billion. The fortune of 23-year-old Lucky Forbes then estimated at $ 700 million.

Since then, there have been several other helmets from other major manufacturers. In 2015, HTC showed the Vive headset, a year later, Sony released a branded helmet for the PlayStation console. In 2019, Valve entered the VR race with its Index helmet. In 2020, the virtual reality technology market reached $15.8 billion. By 2028, it could rise to $84.1 billion, according to the authors of the Fortune Business Insights report.

VR-glasses without a prescription

Schoolgirl Sonya looks into the doctor’s office: she has cerebral palsy, so her grandmother helps her walk. The girl sits on a chair, puts on special gloves with sensors and a VR helmet. From that moment on, she is no longer in a Belarusian clinic, but in virtual reality. Around – a forest landscape. In front of Sonya, a fireball hangs in the air, which must be taken in hand and thrown into the ice hole. In the real world, a girl would not be able to make such a movement due to illness, but in the digital space, the rules are different: hands can be rotated almost without restrictions.

“The plasticity of the brain allows us, in a sense, to deceive nature, that is, to obtain new associative connections where other parts of the brain take on the damaged function. Virtual reality helps with this,” Alexander Yakovlev, chief physician of the Minsk City Center for Medical Rehabilitation of Children with Psychoneurological Diseases, explains the meaning of using VR.

These programs are used to help people recover from stroke, traumatic brain injury, and spinal cord injury. In virtual reality, the process is more efficient, because the restoration of limb mobility can be combined with a game or some pleasant activity, for example, riding a bicycle. In Russia and abroad, there are already complexes that help patients recover faster with the help of a VR helmet. For example, in the medical rehabilitation clinic of the Pirogov Center, a solution from the Devirta-Delphi company was introduced, which helps to restore the movements of large joints and fine motor skills. The person is put on goggles and asked to swim with a dolphin as part of an exercise that restores motor function.

A special VR complex can speed up the rehabilitation of patients after a stroke by 30 percent, employees of the Competence Center of the National Technology Initiative at the Far Eastern Federal University assure. A similar system for dealing with the consequences of a stroke is used at the University of South Carolina. Scientists read the brain and muscle signals of the patient using sensors, and then combine them in virtual reality – it seems to the person that he is moving in the digital world on his own. According to experts, this approach improves the recovery of limb function.

30

percent

— how many exercises in VR can speed up the rehabilitation of patients after a stroke

Aerophobia, fear of insects, alcoholism — even these problems can be solved with the help of virtual reality. For example, those who are afraid of heights can use the development of the Italian startup PhobiaVR: in order to overcome fear, a person is offered to walk along a rope stretched over a canyon in virtual reality. The Russian project Rewire Education helps fight autism: the developers came up with a special VR game that helps children with this disease develop.

There are studies that prove that VR helps fight even depression. In 2016, British and Spanish scientists gave volunteers virtual reality helmets. Putting on a headset, patients entered a room where they saw their crying digital twins, who needed to be calmed down. After a few minutes, the situation changed: the doubles repeated to people the comforting words that they had been told before. After several sessions, nine out of fifteen volunteers reported having fewer depressive symptoms.

In the future, VR will become an indispensable tool in medicine, Anatoly Goronesko, founder of the VR Cast startup, is sure. His company is engaged in live broadcasting of major Russian and world events in 360-degree format. According to Goronesco, the best professionals around the world will use virtual reality to collaborate remotely. For example, they will be able to arrange virtual consultations.

Petrov, to the virtual board!

University of Nottingham student Rebecca Kay puts on a VR headset at least once a week at home and travels to a VR-created island called Nottopia. Together with her on this fictional piece of land are about 50 avatars of her classmates, engineering students who listen to mini-lectures and participate in seminars on the topic of modeling and VR. They do not need to wear masks or maintain social distance – there is no pandemic in virtuality.

Similar classes are held in other countries. The Philippine University of Cebu has launched several VR courses that can be attended from home. In Russia, schoolchildren are gradually being prepared for immersion in virtual reality with the help of the Digital School project. According to the plans of the authors of the initiative, by 2024 a quarter of the country’s educational institutions will use VR helmets. By the end of 2021, at least 12 thousand schoolchildren in 25 regions will have to master educational material using VR. The project “Digital Educational Environment” is responsible for this.

Why is education being transferred to VR at all? At least because this technology allows you to immerse a person in a simulation of some process or phenomenon: to conduct a dangerous experiment or prepare for an emergency, says Modum Lab President Dmitry Kirillov. His company develops immersive educational simulations for manufacturing and corporate training and creates educational AR/VR content for schoolchildren.

In the case of ordinary video, a person simply watches what is happening on the monitor screen, but in the case of VR, he gets into this situation and lives through it, says Kirillov. For example, in DreamPort’s fire simulator, you can train office workers. Putting on glasses, a person will enter a copy of his office, recreated in detail in the virtual world. At some point, the subject will see smoke, and then hear the voice of the assistant. At this time, tips on how to save yourself and your colleagues will be displayed on the screen.

Anatoly Goronesko calls VR an indispensable tool for creating educational simulations and workshops. The specialist notes that such technologies solve the main problem of modern people – lack of time.

In the future, the classroom system will give way to a system of personal education, says Roman Dushkin, author of the Viperson digital twin project. He argues that the familiar teacher-student interaction will become a thing of the past: VR will allow you to choose a curriculum for children based on their individual needs.

VR will seriously affect the field of education, but it will not be the only way to convey information to students, Modum Lab President Kirillov is sure.

VR will not replace classical formats, it will become one of the instruments. Hybrid courses are already appearing, in which a person receives knowledge through classical electronic formats (articles, videos), and develops skills in a virtual environment. It seems to us that this is the most effective way to apply the technology

Dmitry Kirillov, President of Modum Lab

Independent research confirms that learning in virtual reality greatly aids learning. According to a 2020 PwC study, students who used a VR headset were four times better at focusing on a topic than those who attended lectures online.

The immersion effect affects basic human reflexes, explains Alexey Kalenchuk, Head of the Virtual and Augmented Reality, Gamification Technologies Department of the IT Cluster of the Skolkovo Foundation.

“Such an influence in education has a direct effect on memorability. Moreover, VR simulations keep the trainee’s attention 100 percent, that is, he cannot be distracted by a smartphone and other stimuli during the learning process, ”explains the specialist.

VR without emergency

You are watching a person who has come to the store for shopping. His day obviously did not work out: there were problems at work, the money ran out on the bank card. Nearby, someone broke a bottle of alcohol, but the supermarket employees blamed him. That’s why he comes to the checkout in a terrible mood.

The situation described above is part of a VR course for cashiers from the Perekrestok chain of stores. The program created by the Russian company Modum Lab is supposed to teach empathy to a store employee: having seen the suffering of a stranger, in the future the cashier will behave more politely with him. There are similar programs designed for a network trading floor consultant. A successful pilot has already been deployed in a hundred regional points.

“For four months we have been preparing a virtual environment — a three-dimensional copy of one of the stores, including administrative premises and a warehouse. 3D designers created the model from thousands of photographs. It was necessary to achieve maximum reliability, up to the display of goods on the shelves and the detailing of the signs. The more the virtual environment resembles a real store, the more effective the training: it is easier to believe in the realism of what is happening and overcome the psychological barrier when communicating with the bot,” says Dmitry Kirillov, President of Modum Lab.

This practice is not new: even earlier, American Walmart purchased more than 17,000 Strivr Oculus VR headsets to train its employees. More than a million people across the country have completed the training program.

If a consultant refuses to take a VR training, he risks nothing but his future salary, which cannot be said about specialists whose professions involve risking the lives of others. It is especially important for them to undergo full training. Recently, this can also be done in virtual reality. In 2019Roselectronics, a subsidiary of Rostec, showed a comprehensive VR simulator that can be configured to train firefighters, sappers, employees of the Ministry of Emergency Situations and pilots. This allows you to master the skills of working in extreme conditions without the slightest risk to health.

Ekaterina Filatova, President of the Association of Augmented and Virtual Reality, also speaks about the advantages of using virtual reality technology in education. According to her, VR allows a person to be in places where it is difficult, expensive or dangerous to get to in reality. In this case, training can be repeated as many times as necessary to develop skills. For example, when VR helmets are used to train nuclear power plant personnel, employees can even visit those compartments that are usually restricted.

In addition, with the help of virtual copies of hard-to-reach places during training, you can play all possible scenarios, even emergency situations. Another significant advantage of technology is the ability to quickly make adjustments to training when necessary.

The bet on VR is also economically justified, continues Kalenchuk, head of the Skolkovo IT cluster. Virtual simulators save a lot of money. Playing extreme scenarios offline is much more expensive: you need to spend money on equipment models, the necessary units, special equipment cabins, and find a suitable room. In VR, it is enough to draw all this.

Meta-meta, post-post

“Last week, Microsoft’s Alex Kipman, creator of Kinect and HoloLens technologies, showed up in my living room to hand me (virtual) jellyfish and sharks. It may seem like I had a strange dream, but it was a meeting made possible thanks to the new Microsoft Mesh platform, ”so began his report journalist Tom Warren, who was one of the first to try the new virtual service in March 2021. This platform helps with remote work: now people from different parts of the planet can work together and almost tangibly. It is enough to put on HoloLens VR glasses and you can see the avatars of colleagues and friends who seem to be standing nearby.

Mesh is the prototype of the so-called metaverse, which futurists and billionaires have been dreaming about for a long time. The duplicate of our reality in the digital world haunts not only Microsoft, but also Facebook. Back in July 2021, the founder of the social network Mark Zuckerberg announced the transformation of his platform into a metaverse. According to the plans of the billionaire, users will be able to connect to it using AR / VR headsets.

“The metaverse vision spans the entire industry, you can think of it as the successor to the mobile internet, embodied on the internet, where instead of browsing content, you’re on it. You feel the presence of other people, as if you are in other places. Experience sensations that are not available with 2D apps or web pages, such as dancing or doing fitness, ”Zuckerberg explained.

The corporation has Portal and Oculus platforms that allow you to “teleport” a person to his interlocutors, who, using glasses, will see his avatar in the room. True, the technology has one significant drawback: it is not yet possible to move an avatar from one virtual space to another. Facebook is now working on creating a “connective tissue” that will make moving between spaces as easy as moving from one room to another in real life.

The first step towards the emergence of the metaverse can be considered the Horizon project from Facebook. In August, the social network introduced a tool that allows company employees to simulate team meetings in virtual reality. To enter the digital space, you need an Oculus Quest 2 helmet and a working laptop. So employees will be able to keep in touch with the team during remote work.

“I think that the metaverse is the future of VR,” Kirillov confidently answers the question about the potential success of the concept. He is supported by other experts.

But for a full immersion in VR, one helmet is not enough, and the developers understand this. For a person to believe in what is happening on the screen, you need to use more human feelings. The problem of touch was tried to be solved by the authors of the startup Wireality. Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University are creating gloves that allow you to touch objects in the digital world. Users get the impression that they are touching real things.

Russian specialist from ITMO University Konstantin Malyshev went further. He invented a prototype device that transmits smells into virtual reality. So far, the range of flavors is limited, but in the future their number can be expanded.

Complete freedom

A few years ago, skeptics did not believe in VR for several reasons. First, the headsets were expensive and not very comfortable. In 2016, users paid $600 for an Oculus Rift and received a wired headset that could be used mainly for gaming or watching movies, but there was little content suitable for this. Competitor HTC Vive VR cost $200 more.

In addition, users of the first headsets often complained of malaise: after being in virtual reality, some felt dizzy, others felt nauseous, and others itched and hurt their eyes. With such a set of negative consequences, one could not even dream of a bright virtual future. However, experts assure that all these problems are in the past.

Wires are being phased out, a new standard is emerging for stand-alone helmets that can work without a computer, says Modum Lab President Kirillov. “Devices are getting cheaper and more affordable. You can go to a large electronics store and almost certainly buy a VR helmet there, which will cost no more than a game console, ”he adds.

In the foreseeable future, VR devices will look like ordinary glasses, which will have voice control and the ability to show virtual objects in a real environment, says Ekaterina Filatova, president of the Association for Augmented and Virtual Reality. Most likely, they will have the opportunity to switch to virtual reality mode.

Unpleasant sensations when using VR helmets can also be associated with software, Filatova emphasizes. If the user is swayed, it means that the developer did not take into account the peculiarities of the physiology and behavior of a person in the virtual space, did not test the content enough before launching.