A visit to any electronics or tech shop will definitely be for two reasons. One, you really want to buy a product or the other, you want to get your hands on it and just give it a try! I mostly go for the latter!

In one such visits I tried on a VR headset just to realize that such a powerful visualizer can effectively simulate unbelievably enchanting experiences that may be difficult to achieve in reality. These experiences, that you get to virtually feel, hear and see, are not just cool and exciting but they will also help revolutionize industries like healthcare, education and automotive.

VR- A powerful visualizer that emulates enchanting experiences (Source: Adobe Stock)

Playing video games has always been great fun for people of different age-groups. Many of us wish that we could spend all day just gaming especially when we have the right gaming devices. If you have ever wanted to swing around like spider man or experience zero gravity in a game, VR allows you to get very close to it. The ability to add real world physics gave rise to the idea that some really intricate concepts like those in physics and mathematics can be very interactively explained through VR. A recent research published by University of Piraeus suggests an interesting use case of using VR to teach experimental physics. People would no longer have to worry about large lab spaces for practicing experiments. But this comes only with powerful and robust software systems that can simulate most practical scenarios that could occur in the actual lab reality.

It may occasionally be hard to find human subjects to train medical students for procedures like surgery. In the case of human body as against any machine, not having a practical experience directly translates to experimenting with the patients’ lives. I’m sure none of us would like to make an altruistic sacrifice so that the doctors can practice surgery on us! Startups like Osso VR, make it possible to train doctors on highly realistic, immersive VR platforms with hand based interactions.

A VR based surgery for trainees at hospitals (Source: FundamentalVR)

Neurofeedback is the new game-changer in Neuroscience where people are treated through a simple feedback based brain activity regulation mechanism. A great deal of research and test experiments show that VR based visual feedback to patients’ brains can significantly improve attention disorders like ADHD in children. Subjects show enhanced amounts of beta brain waves (those responsible for attention. I hope your beta waves are high while reading this 🙂) after a VR based neurofeedback session. NeuroVR is a free and open-source platform for rehabilitation of cognitive and psychological disorders that’s backing the developers interested in building useful VR software.

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VR for rehabilitation of cognitive and psychological disorders (Source: Kurt Othmer, Youtube)

A recent survey has narrowed down to the fact that every minute of the day, there is a vehicle related accident. So, is shutting yourself indoors the only safe alternative? Fortunately no! Companies like Tesla and Google are heavily investing in self-driving cars that can completely reduce risks of accidents due to unsafe driving. Who makes it safer? It is the VR based simulators!
Recently Nvidia announced that it would be focusing on Drive Constellation, a computing platform which has two parts. Firstly, the simulator that generates sensor data as though it is the actual vehicle collecting data from the road. The second part is the Nvidia Drive Pegasus that’s the AI software which processes the data.

Nvidia’s Drive Constellation- A VR based simulator for autonomous vehicles (Source: Internet)

The VR system helps provide test situations like blinding light or snow that can be hard to find in real world. This helps design robust software that can safely drive you through in any situation!

VR helps driving you through all situations! Safely!! (Source: Internet)

How can VR benefit you?

Modern VR market is hugely decided by the VR product base. The VR industry is predicted to hit a revenue of 9–10 Billion Dollars by 2025! This is a remarkable prediction for us to understand that the industry offers a steady growth and provides huge opportunities for VR ready individuals. Combined with AI, VR can bring about impactful changes in society that can transform the way the next generation starts perceiving its world.

Graph showing market revenue growth of VR industry in the USA (in Millions) (Source: Internet)

More concretely, VR can revolutionize what we see and touch by replacing it with an immersive and interactive experience. Major tech giants like Samsung, Google, Apple and Nvidia are the chief contributors to VR market and at the same time the chief researchers that can help explore more versatile use cases of this impactful technology within the next few years. As against what one would expect out of a pure entertainment device, the VR technology offers industry based use cases that can help us construct a more empowered society.

If you want to get started with some VR programming the best place to start would be to get familiar with a gaming engine like Unity. The community for VR developers is budding yet highly supportive. If you are a game developer in unity or even just a beginner do give VR development a try!

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The Brighter Reality of Virtual Reality was originally published in AR/VR Journey: Augmented & Virtual Reality Magazine on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.