Thursday, June 16, 2016

First world problem--Virtual Reality Sickness

About to toss virtual cookies?
I have never tried Virtual Reality, though I would love to.

I have learned, though, that peering into the headsets--Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, SonyPlayStation VR, and Google Cardboard--can cause a conflict between the soaring, flying, or driving the viewer "sees" in the headset and the messages from the inner ear's vestibular system, which governs our sense of motion, equilibtirum, and spatial orientation.

In short--you feel wacky. It's a form of motion sickness.

Now, some researchers from Columbia University have tinkered with changing toe user's Field of View (FOV) can cut the symptoms.

By 2020, there will be 200 million VR headsets in play.

The scientists used a body of theory called change blindnesss--wherein someone does not "see" even an obvious change of scene.

This makes the changes in Field of View invisble to the user.

On the downisde, decreasing Field of View can make the VR experience less vivid.  So they found a way to change the Field of View depending on the need.

They tried this out on 30 volunteers. Basically, those with the FOV restrictors stayed in VR longer and were more comfortable.

If I ever try VR, I hope this system is standard--I have already been tested for weird vestibular effects, dizziness especially.

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