Professional Issues. Virtual Reality. Blay Whitby
Virtual Reality. The Technology. Despite all the hype, VR is an extension of previous technologies The reality of VR's virtual roots 1. Flight simulation 2.Stereo image pairs 3.Computer graphics 4.Arcade/computer games 5.Interactive and multimedia systems
Virtual Reality. The Technology. VR (at least at present) does not live up (virtually) to its press/public image (electronic LSD). Many of VR's real applications are more mundane:- 1.Arcade games 2.Architectural 'walkthroughs' 3.Flight simulators 4.Training
Virtual Reality. The Technology. Technical Elements 1.VR Head Mounted Display (HMD) or helmet Small screens mounted immediately in front of eyes. Tracking device monitors head/eye movement. Together this can give the appearance of 'moving' through a 'virtual world'. 2.Dataglove Sensors track hand position and flexing movements. As with the HMD there is a large number of connections to a computer. Devices such as air sacs in the glove can provide tactile feedback.
Applications of VR 3 Main headings:- 1.Training 2.Advertising 3.Entertainment
Applications of VR Training 1. Extension of previous techniques and technologies:- Flight simulation. Battlefield simulation. Industrial process training. Emergency services training. Surgical training. 2. In schools:- Virtual laboratories. Giving realism (virtually) to subjects such as history. 3. For experiments:- with dangerous technology relaxing normal physical laws
Applications of VR Advertising For advertisers VR is too good to miss. VR offers new ways to tailor advertisements to individual psychology. Is there a danger of 'VR junkmail'? What can be made of existing advertising standards in this new area? Is VR more effective than previous methods of advertising? Do we need controls, if so, what and when?
Applications of VR Entertainment Given the success of computer and arcade games, we can expect a large market. Just good safe fun?. Similar problems and dangers to those with computer games? 'Teledildonics' should society impose any controls? What about 'virtual crime', 'virtual rape', 'virtual murder'?
Some Ethical Objections to VR 1. They might do it for real. 'Catharsis'. Difficulties in getting reliable evidence. 2. People will prefer the virtual to the real. Do people believe in soap operas?
Some Ethical Objections to VR 3. You just can't do that (even virtually). What, if any, are the limits? 4.;''VR designers can (and should) signal what is and is not acceptable by what they allow or encourage in their systems.;''
Virtual crime They might do it for real. Some things are not even virtually acceptable. People will prefer the virtual to the real. We should be careful about what signals we send out of approval or disapproval.