Though our discussions of virtual reality often center on its applications in gaming and gameplay mechanics, there are those uses for virtual reality outside of gaming that have even greater potential to transform the segment from a niche into a leading medium for delivering digital content and information. We’re talking about applications for virtual reality in medicine, real estate, education, and beyond.
A recent article on Engineering.com focused on virtual reality’s applications outside of the gaming space and, in particular, how it could completely change the fields of architecture, engineering, and construction. To imagine how powerful VR could be for these fields imagine an architect being able to walk through his design, an engineer being able to view a creation in 3D, or a construction worker solving a job-site issue using 3D modeling in virtual reality.
These are just a few of the potential uses for this technology that promises to marry the world of Minority Report with practical fields that build that future. Virtual reality has been around for a long time in some form or the other but the recent advances in computing power and in headset displays allow engineers to think in grander terms than ever before.
Visualization has always been an important element of design for engineers, architects, and construction professionals in the past, and VR takes it to the next level and allows for ways of interaction that were previously impossible. Most interesting for gamers is how the intersection of gaming and practical fields are actually having benefits for the latter and justifies the former.
As video game technology using VR has become more popular (and thus less expensive to produce), more and more engineering firms and their kin are looking at how VR can transform their work and make it more efficient and better executed in practice.
This shift has largely been facilitated by gaming’s new love for VR, and that’s something that could lead in the future to even more advanced gaming applications born out of the need to simulate real-world scenarios. It’s not hard to imagine how architecture and construction-site simulation technologies could benefit video game immersion, but it is hard to imagine that video games are the reason for the season when it comes to this transformational technology.
And most amazing is that a lot of the work being done now using VR is using off-the-shelf headsets that gamers know and loves such as the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. While in the past industry would have demanded specialized equipment before implementing it, the quick advance of gaming VR technology can’t be ignored and offers a superior choice for engineers and scientists trying to get their feet wet with what VR can do for them.
One thing is certain, the more VR becomes a part of daily life, from work to entertainment, the more we as VR gaming fans will benefit in the process. Imagine the VR headsets of tomorrow – able to play fully interactive and immersive games but also capable of helping you design a home, car, or even direct a move or field project at a distance. The future is truly a bright horizon when it comes to the expansion of VR tech.