Psychology & Psychiatry

How virtual reality might help fight recurring nightmares

You might say that Patrick McNamara is in a frightening line of work. As a sleep researcher, he's hunting for new ways to treat people with nightmare disorder (also known as dream anxiety disorder). Being chased by a malevolent ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

Length of eye blinks might act as conversational cue

Blinking may feel like an unconscious activity, but new research by Paul Hömke and colleagues at the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, suggests that humans unknowingly perceive eye blinks as nonverbal cues when ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

Virtual reality may encourage empathic behavior

Virtual Reality could be a useful tool to encourage empathy, helpful behavior, and positive attitudes towards marginalized groups, according to a study published October 17, 2018 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Fernanda ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

Anorexia nervosa patients prefer underweight bodies

An interdisciplinary team of scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, the University of Tübingen and the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems placed test persons in front of their virtual ...


Virtual reality can improve performance during exercise

Using virtual reality (VR) headsets while exercising can reduce pain and increase how long someone can sustain an activity, according to new research from the School of Engineering and Digital Arts.

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Virtual reality

Virtual reality (VR) is a technology which allows a user to interact with a computer-simulated environment, whether that environment is a simulation of the real world or an imaginary world. Most current virtual reality environments are primarily visual experiences, displayed either on a computer screen or through special or stereoscopic displays, but some simulations include additional sensory information, such as sound through speakers or headphones. Some advanced, haptic systems now include tactile information, generally known as force feedback, in medical and gaming applications. Users can interact with a virtual environment or a virtual artifact (VA) either through the use of standard input devices such as a keyboard and mouse, or through multimodal devices such as a wired glove, the Polhemus boom arm, and omnidirectional treadmill. The simulated environment can be similar to the real world, for example, simulations for pilot or combat training, or it can differ significantly from reality, as in VR games. In practice, it is currently very difficult to create a high-fidelity virtual reality experience, due largely to technical limitations on processing power, image resolution and communication bandwidth. However, those limitations are expected to eventually be overcome as processor, imaging and data communication technologies become more powerful and cost-effective over time.

Virtual Reality is often used to describe a wide variety of applications, commonly associated with its immersive, highly visual, 3D environments. The development of CAD software, graphics hardware acceleration, head mounted displays, database gloves and miniaturization have helped popularize the notion. In the book The Metaphysics of Virtual Reality, Michael Heim identifies seven different concepts of Virtual Reality: simulation, interaction, artificiality, immersion, telepresence, full-body immersion, and network communication. The definition still has a certain futuristic romanticism attached. People often identify VR with Head Mounted Displays and Data Suits.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA