Technology news are full of important events, but few of them represent real breakthroughs. The best university in the world in 2014, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, regularly gives to the surface incredible discovery and development, presented his top ten breakthrough technologies of the present time.
According to the authors, this breakthroughs that will make a difference for many years. In this series, we will learn more about each item.
Oculus Rift – thirty years after the emergence of virtual reality glasses, the technology is finally ready for wide distribution.
High-quality hardware virtual reality, access to consumer market.
Virtual reality interfaces will lead to new forms of entertainment and communications.
When in 1992 released film The Lawnmower Man, Palmer Lucky was not even born yet. But when he still looked and saw this film immersion in virtual reality, he was born on a certain interest. He dreamed of playing video games that simulate three-dimensional world – and this led him to dream of gathering the world’s largest collection of displays, worn on the head, and ultimately inspired him to create one yourself. No special engineering skills, Lucky constructed the first working prototype in his garage at age 16.
Today it – 21-year-old founder of Oculus VR, a company that is just before the release of Rift, affordable virtual reality headset for an incredible immersion in video games. Facebook bought the company for $ 2 billion this spring.
Oculus VR has already attracted more than 91 million dollars in venture funding, a lot of fans and serious team members like the famous game designer John Carmack, who developed games such as Doom, Quake and Rage. But the deal with Facebook – it’s a sign that virtual reality is close enough and inexpensive to powerfully affect the video game industry. The idea of merging the virtual reality with social communications rather intriguing. Points can also be a powerful tool for teleconferencing, online shopping or more passive forms of entertainment. Some filmmakers, in fact, are already experimenting with films created specifically for Rift.
Virtual reality headset has been around a long time, but the technology was never widely distributed, and its quality is very limp. However, as in many other areas, Lucky realized that cheap components smartphone perfectly suited to create a stunning effect, and the graphics of their participation will be much better than a block schedule earlier prototypes headsets.
When you use the Rift, you feel as if actually are inside these worlds. Technology follows the movement of your head in real-time: lean to better consider a virtual flower, or lift your head to see the virtual cloud, and your mind will plunge into the penalty area. You almost believe that you are actually there.
The vast audience home video game showed their interest in the device. In August 2012 Oculus VR launched a campaign on Kickstarter to collect 250,000 dollars. Million dollars have collected in two days.
Lucky began supplying Rift version for software developers in March 2013 for only $ 300, and last year, the hardware has improved significantly. The retail version of the device which is expected to be launched later this year or early next year, will offer resolution higher than 1920 x 1080 pixels in one eye. Such an incredible value for money has been made possible only recently.
Most likely, the first in the field of virtual reality will play, but soon it will be used in architecture, telepresence, design, training and therapy.
In some niches outdated technology of virtual reality has been used for a long time. Some surgeons regularly practice the use of virtual simulation, industrial designers viewed their projects as if they have already been constructed. But 30 years ago, when Jaron Lanier founded VPL Research, the first company to sell virtual reality glasses, these products were too expensive for mainstream consumers.
There were other reasons as to why earlier versions of virtual reality have not entered the commercial market. Players Virtual Boy from Nintendo, launched in the mid-90s, complained of nausea after a long game. Others just disappointed in the virtual world. The first game in the virtual world is just incredible – says Lanier. – But in the twentieth time is tiring to play.
Now everything can change. Although some testers experienced nausea after Oculus Rift, the company says that the latest version of the problem is resolved. And today’s virtual environment provides a much more honest a world in which you can stay much longer. Artists were able to create a huge array of worlds, from a strictly realistic to more abstract and beautiful.
Oculus has inspired imitators. Recognizing Rift inspiration, Sony demonstrated a virtual reality headset that players can use with the PlayStation 4. Also Sony is working with NASA to create a virtual simulation of the Martian environment using pictures rover.