Virtual reality is an artificial environment that is created with software and presented to the user in such a way that the user suspends belief and accepts it as a real environment. Our eyes and ears work the same whether we are in a real world or a virtual one.
When we simulate the way we experience the real world, for instance, by simulating three- dimensional scenes using stereoscopic vision, VR can make us feel like as if we are in a different world altogether, but a very realistic-feeling one. In a VR environment, a user experiences immersion, or the feeling of being inside and a part of that world. He is also able to interact with his environment in meaningful ways.
On a computer, virtual reality is primarily experienced through two of the five senses: sight and sound. The simplest form of virtual reality is a 3-D image that can be explored interactively at a personal computer, usually by manipulating keys or the mouse so that the content of the image moves in some direction or zooms in or out. More sophisticated efforts involve such approaches as wrap-around display screens, actual rooms augmented with wearable computers, and haptics devices that let you feel the display images.
Virtual reality can be divided into:
- The simulation of a real environment for training and education.
- The development of an imagined environment for a game or interactive story.
To understand how effective VR works, we first need to understand a little about how the brain makes sense of the world around us.
Let us stop and think about the senses that allow us to experience the world: vision, hearing, and touch. To make sense of the world, the brain needs to first bring in information from sensory organs, such as the eyes, ears, and skin. But bringing in the information only describes sensation. What happens next is that the brain interprets this information, allowing us to understand what is happening in the environment. The brain’s interpretation of the senses which create our understanding is called perception. For instance, we can see a dog running across the room, hear her bark, and feel her fur brush against our skin—these are sensations that we come to understand and perceive as experiences.
The sensations all come together through perception to give us the experience of the dog. It is this interplay of sensation (using vision, hearing, etc.) and perception (our brain’s interpretation of this information) that creates our experience of reality.
Mrs. Manjusha Sanke
Information Technology Department