Tuesday, November 20, 2012

My Thoughts On Virtual Reality

I found these chapters to be very informative and interesting. The idea of virtual reality is extremely entertaining but confusing. To be honest, virtual reality is one that I am still struggling to understand. I am not even sure that I want to understand it. I see the good that virtual reality provides to us tecnology users but I believe that it also has weird effects. People literally live their lives via the computer and I find it quite disturbing.

For this reason, I've always thought of virtual reality as a concept that is not meant to be understood. Reading about virtual reality in such a concrete manner is really enlightening. The text says, "One of the highly practical functions of virtual reality is that it can let us see things that are ordinarily hidden from our view. For instance, a sophisticated VR display can give a medical student an unprecedented view of various organs in a human body, and let the student see how they function under normal and pathological conditions" (p.108). This statement made me understand what virtual reality actually is. It does help us see and experience things that are not usually available to us [so easily].

Chapter 6 talks about one of the harms of virtual reality. In particular, how is the distinction between  fantasy and reality made? When in constant use, where does one draw the line? I might be totally off topic but when I think of virtual reality, my mind goes to the Batman Colorado shooting. Could it be that James Holmes (shooter) confused the regular world with the virtual Gotham City? Clearly he did, and this kind of shows the negative effects of immersing oneself in a virtual reality. Chapter 7 points out that "...virtual reality is a technology of illusion, whose purpose is to convince the viewer that he or she is occupying the same visual space as the objects in view" (p.131). Reading that is very scary and it is clear to understand why a crime like the Colorado shooting could happen. Some people are so engulfed in the  the virtual realities that are provided through cyberspace that they can't tell the difference between fake and real life.

Clearly the limitations of virtual reality are decreasing everyday.While, I believe that it's helpful to society I still view it as a detriment.

To end off on a positive note, I found a video that's kind of dope! It's a virtual reality game, which I'm sure most of us have either experienced or seen before. Watch it below.

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