Psychology & Psychiatry

Using virtual reality could make you a better person in real life

If you've ever participated in a virtual reality (VR) experience, you might have found yourself navigating the virtual world as an avatar. If you haven't, you probably recognise the experience from its portrayal in film and ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

Selfies and the self: what they say about us and society

The selfie craze speaks volumes about the era in which we live: how images race around the globe and can dominate public discourse, eliciting strong emotions and even blurring the lines of reality.

Psychology & Psychiatry

Virtual reality hopes to treat mental health problems

Virtual reality headsets are often associated with video games and fun, but companies are also working to use them for mental health therapies, to treat phobias, anxiety or addictions.

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Virtual world

The computer accesses a computer-simulated world and presents perceptual stimuli to the user, who in turn can manipulate elements of the modeled world and thus experiences telepresence to a certain degree. Such modeled worlds may appear similar to the real world or instead depict fantasy worlds. The model world may simulate rules based on the real world or some hybrid fantasy world. Example rules are gravity, topography, locomotion, real-time actions, and communication. Communication between users has ranged from text, graphical icons, visual gesture, sound, and rarely, forms using touch, voice command, and balance senses.

Massively multiplayer online games commonly depict a world very similar to the real world, with real world rules and real-time actions, and communication. Communication is usually textual, with real-time voice communication using VOIP also possible.[clarification needed]

Virtual worlds are not limited to games but, depending on the degree of immediacy presented, can encompass computer conferencing and text based chatrooms. Sometimes, emoticons or 'smilies' are available, to show feeling or facial expression. Emoticons often have a keyboard shortcut. Edward Castronova is an economist who has argued that "synthetic worlds" is a better term for these cyberspaces, but this term has not been widely adopted.

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