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How did Virtual Reality come about?

The concept of Virtual Reality is increasingly represented in the world and in our country. However, what many do not know is that it goes on for almost a hundred years!

The first year in which it is mentioned is even in 1929 – when an innovator and entrepreneur, Edwin Albert Link designs the first flight simulator for training the pilot.

Six years later, writer Stanley G. Weinbaum publishes a short story called Pygmalion’s Spectacles in which he develops the idea of ​​a virtual reality accessed using special glasses. Morton Heilig created a bulky prototype VR device in an attempt to create a new cinematic experience in the late 50’s. The so-called Sensorama was equipped with a stereoscopic screen and stereo speakers, a moving chair, as well as a fan that imitated the wind and sprayed the scents.

The first headset was created by Philania Corp. in 1961, it would allow for easier video surveillance, and it was intended for military training. On the screen in front of the user, the user would see a live transfer from a nearby camera. What makes it similar to today’s devices is the ability to observe the environment by shifting the head using a magnetic motion tracking system that would also indicate the camera’s movement.

Behind the first “real” VR / AR headset stands John Saterland, who in 1968 created a device that projected images from a computer directly in front of the user’s eyes. In fact, the device has added 3D objects to the actual space, which makes it AR more than the VR. The device was so heavy that they had to cling to it for the ceiling, which was nicknamed “Damocles sword,” according to the story of associate ruler Syracuse in ancient Greece, Damocle.

The notion of “virtual reality” came into its daily use in 1987, and it is attributed to the program scientist, writer and artist Jaron Lanier (some sources claim that he only popularized the already existing name).

In the early 1990s, Virtuality Group launched several video games that could be played with the help of special glasses and connected controllers, so that only two years later Sega would present its own glasses for virtual reality, however, everything remained in the prototype stage.

Just in 2011, Google is developing a prototype of its glasses for expanded reality – Google Glass, and the next – Startup Oculus VR is developing Oculus Rift’s virtual reality and glasses and launching a Kickstarter campaign to fund the project.

True expansion of VR is experienced in 2014 by the purchase of Oculus VR by Facebook for $ 2 billion. That same year, Google developed a simple virtual reality solution – Cardboard. It’s a cheap cardboard headseat with lenses which, in combination with a smartphone and an application, turns into virtual reality glasses.

However, Oculus continues to further cooperate with Samsung, and 2015 develops the virtual reality device Gear VR, compatible with Samsung’s smartphones. At the same time, the competitor HTC presents its virtual HTC Vive system.

The human race will have to change the habits and adopt new rules of business, learning, selling, advertising that involves the use of new technology that already knocks us on the door and asks for its application in our everyday activities. The virtual reality has found its application in the film industry, the entertainment industry, the military, architecture, medicine, education, sports and many other areas. What is obvious is that VR is our new future.