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Applications Of Virtual Reality Many people are familiar with the term ‘virtual reality’ but are unsure

about the uses of this technology. Gaming is an obvious virtual reality application as are virtual worlds but there are a whole host of uses for virtual reality – some of which are more challenging or unusual than others. Where is virtual reality used? 1-Virtual Reality in the Military Virtual reality has been adopted by the military – this includes all three services (army, navy and air force) – where it is used for training purposes. This is particularly useful for training soldiers for combat situations or other dangerous settings where they have to learn how to react in an appropriate manner. A virtual reality simulation enables them to do so but without the risk of death or a serious injury. They can re-enact a particular scenario, for example engagement with an enemy in an environment in which they experience this but without the real world risks. This has proven to be safer and less costly than traditional training methods.

Military uses of virtual reality These include: Flight simulation Battlefield simulation Medic training (battlefield) Vehicle simulation Virtual boot camp

g. Virtual Reality in Healthcare Healthcare is one of the biggest adopters of virtual reality which encompasses surgery simulation.Virtual reality is also used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder. Soldiers suffering from battlefield trauma and other psychological conditions can learn how to deal with their symptoms in a ‘safe’ environment. Virtual Reality in Entertainment The entertainment industry is one of the most enthusiastic advocates of virtual reality. Virtual Reality in Fashion Fashion is not something that immediately springs to mind when thinking about virtual reality but nevertheless. Plus these students can interact with the objects in that environment in order to discover more about them. The idea is for them to be exposed to the triggers for their condition which they gradually adjust to. it is used by the fashion industry in a variety of ways. . One of the advantages of this technology is that it allows healthcare professionals to learn new skills as well as refreshing existing ones in a safe environment. e.g. most noticeably in games and virtual worlds. interactive exhibitions Galleries Theatre. phobia treatment. The advantage of this is that it enables large groups of students to interact with each other as well as within a three dimensional environment. e. Plus it allows this without causing any danger to the patients. Virtual Reality and Education Education is another area which has adopted virtual reality for teaching and learning situations. It is able to present complex data in an accessible way to students which is both fun and easy to learn. interactive performances Virtual theme parks Discovery centres Many of these areas fall into the category ‘edutainment’ in which the aim is to educate as well as entertain. robotic surgery and skills training. This has the effect of decreasing their symptoms and enabling them to cope to new or unexpected situations. But other equally popular areas include: Virtual Museums.

These settings employ interaction as a means of communicating information to the general public in new and exciting ways. Please see the Virtual Reality Games section. galleries and visitor centres. Virtual Reality and Heritage This refers to the use of virtual reality in museum and historical settings. .These include: VR software for building virtual fashion stores 3D avatars (virtual humans) to help with clothes design Fashion show in Second Life 3D fashion portfolio Second Life is discussed further as a separate article. For example it enables them to test a prototype without having to develop several versions of this which can be time consuming and expensive. Children are often difficult to attract to a museum or gallery as they tend to see this as a boring experience. But the use of interactive technologies such as virtual reality has changed that perception and opened up these spaces to a new audience. e. Plus it is a good way of detecting design problems at an early stage which can then be dealt with sooner rather than later.g. Virtual Reality in Business Virtual reality is being used in a number of ways by the business community which include: Virtual tours of a business environment Training of new employees A 360 view of a product Many businesses have embraced virtual reality as a cost effective way of developing a product or service. Interactive displays form a large part of many exhibitions and particularly appeal to children. The old model was that of passive engagement in which people viewed the exhibit/s but did not get involved to an experience in which interaction is the main feature. There has been a move away from the traditional type of experience associated with museums. visitor centres.

It also used in clothing/equipment design and as part of the drive to improve the audience’s experience. television. Virtual Reality in Media This article discusses the various ways virtual reality is used in the media. Virtual Reality and Scientific Visualisation Virtual reality is being increasingly used in the field of scientific visualisation. Virtual reality in film and TV Virtual reality has featured in several film and television programmes. This means high end graphics. skiing. Virtual Reality in Sport Virtual reality is used as a training aid in many sports such as golf. Plus they can spot any flaws or potential risks before implementation. This includes radio. music and film as well as books and the arts. cycling etc. What is important is the ability of virtual reality to depict fine grained details of an engineering product to maintain the illusion. This field is based upon using computer graphics to express complex ideas and scientific concepts. This also allows the design team to observe their project within a safe environment and make changes as and where necessary. It is used as an aid to measuring athletic performance as well as analysing technique and is designed to help with both of these. This saves both time and money. video with a fast refresh rate and realistic sound and movement. athletics. Virtual Reality in Telecommunications . or as a form of advanced technology. It is often used to illustrate the concept of being trapped within the machine (or in this case. This technology enables engineers to view their project in 3D and gain a greater understanding of how it works. for example molecular models or statistical results.Virtual Reality in Engineering Virtual reality engineering includes the use of 3D modelling tools and visualisation techniques as part of the design process. cyberspace).

as such. In fact. Virtual Reality Programming Languages For virtual reality to be truly effective. Telecommunications can be used to help virtual reality systems such as surgery simulation or telemedicine. Skype and live chat. The main characters were taken from reality and transported into a virtual world inside a computer. virtual reality is highly demanding on many resources. The main challenge is that of dealing with a medium which mainly relies upon tone of voice. From hardware performance to the intellectual ability of the implementor of the system. . It also enables surgery to be performed in remote locations using robotic technology and virtual reality. Using a virtual environment. gesture and body language as compared to spoken words. was one of the first movies to use virtual reality as a plot element. TRON. in particular mobile communications which enables easy access to a variety of VR based projects. Virtual Reality in Construction Virtual reality can be extremely useful in the construction industry. Virtual Reality in Film Virtual reality is a very common theme in science fiction movies. But traditional forms of communication such as the telephone are being superseded by video conferencing. spoken words only account for a very small percentage of the overall communication. which is often known as having a very high amount of inefficiency and low profit margins. An example of this is remote surgery in which images from that surgery can be transmitted to various locations around the world. it must have a good sense of realism. intonation. This is not 100% like the virtual reality we know today but the concept of another reality inside of a computer reminds the same. Just on its own this is a technical challenge and. how these are managed are a massive issue. where it is often used a way to turn the fantastical into something that seems totally real. for instance. an organisation can not only render the resulting structure in 3D but also experience them as they would in the real world. These communication mediums can be used on the internet and other similar systems and are seen as cheaper and more flexible.Telecommunications is another field which has utilised virtual reality technology.