September Update – Virtual Reality and the Web

What is Virtual Reality?

The computer-generated simulation of a three-dimensional image or environment that can be interacted with in a seemingly real or physical way by a person using special electronic equipment, such as a helmet with a screen inside or gloves fitted with sensors. The definition of virtual reality comes, naturally, from the definitions for both ‘virtual’ and ‘reality’. The definition of ‘virtual’ is near and reality is what we experience as human beings. So the term ‘virtual reality’ basically means ‘near-reality’. This could, of course, mean anything but it usually refers to a specific type of reality emulation.

VR example showing a castle emerging from a smart phone

How is virtual reality achieved?

Today virtual reality is usually implemented using computer technology. There are a range of systems that are used for this purpose, such as headsets, omni-directional treadmills and special gloves. These are used to actually stimulate our senses together in order to create the illusion of reality. This is more difficult than it sounds, since our senses and brains are evolved to provide us with a finely synchronized and mediated experience.

What is WebVR?

WebVR is an open specification that makes it possible to experience VR in your browser. The goal is to make it easier for everyone to get into VR experiences, no matter what device you have.

This WebVR article tells about how to experience VR and if you have headset and browser to use. It also tells us how we can experience the WebVR if we don’t have the headset.

WebVR — Virtual Reality for the Web

The concept of virtual reality in itself isn’t new, but now we have the technology to have it working as it should be, and a JavaScript API to make use of it in web applications. This article introduced WebVR from the perspective of its use in games.

It also focuses on following topics:

  • VR devices
  • The WebVR API
  • Tools and techniques
  • The future of WebVR

Key Elements of a Virtual Reality Experience

For those who wish to learn more about virtual reality and the web, we encourage you to review these articles.

In this week we reviewed what is happening with Virtual Reality and the Web, including, the key elements of virtual reality and its experience. We also provided more information on the WebVR concepts, also how the VR headset works. We hope you find these resources and overviews useful. We always look forward to your comments and feedback (whether you are a member or not).

The potential for this is growing rapidly. This is evidenced by the latest version of Adobe Captivate (Captivate 2019) which includes the ability to create Virtual Reality learning projects (which you can publish as a web page).

We encourage members (and non-members) check out our social media channels. If you aspire to be a web professional and don’t know where to start, we offer a number of beginning classes to our members via our School Of Web learning management system. As a member, your first class is free.

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