Virtual reality: everything you need to know

Virtual reality: everything you need to know

Computers & TechnologyTechnology

  • Author Alex Korvo
  • Published December 19, 2017
  • Word count 1,297

View author’s other articles

Summary: Today, progress has reached truly unprecedented heights, and the new generation is able to use such opportunities, which only 10-15 years ago people only dreamed of. Mysticism and magic, nowadays has become a technological progress.

The definition of virtual reality

Virtual reality is a virtual world created by means of technical and software, transmitted to a person through touch, hearing, as well as sight and, in some cases, sense of smell. It is the combination of all these influences on a person’s feelings in the sum is called the interactive world

VR can accurately simulate the effects of the surrounding virtual reality on humans, but in order to create a truly plausible computer synthesis from reactions and properties within the interactive world, all synthesis processes are calculated, analyzed and output as real-time behavior.

The use of virtual reality is multifaceted: in 99 percent of cases, the animate and inanimate objects created with this technology have exactly the same properties, behavior and movement as their real prototypes have. In this case, the user is able to exert influence on all animate and inanimate objects according to the real laws of physics (if the gameplay does not provide other laws of physics, which happens very rarely).

How it works

Many people wonder how the technology works. Here are the three main components that are used in virtually any interaction with the virtual environment:

Head. The virtual environment carefully, with the help of a specialized headset, tracks the position of the head. So, the headset moves the picture when the user turns his head – in the side, down or up. Such a system is officially called the six degrees of freedom.

Movement. In more expensive modifications of technical support, the user’s movements are monitored, and the virtual picture will move according to them. It’s not about games where the user simply is in place and interacts with the environment, but about those where he moves in the virtual space.

Eyes. Another fundamental in reality sensor is analyzing the direction in which the eyes are looking. Thanks to this game allow the user to immerse themselves in interactive reality more deeply.

 Full Presence Effect

Already by the term of full presence, it is clear what exactly is going on: the world is a virtual reality. This means that the user will feel himself exactly where the game is located and he can interact with it. The user turns his head – the character also turns his head, the person walks within his room – the player moves in the interactive reality. There are still disputes – is it possible to completely immerse in virtual reality?

The Leap – finger and hand tracking

The effect of full presence is achieved through the device The Leap. This device, using a sophisticated tracking system for each movement, is still part of a very expensive and TOP helmet. However, the algorithm of operation is quite simple, and it is present in a slightly modified form in another device, namely in the HTC Vive helmet.


Both the controller and the helmet in the HTC Vive are equipped with a lot of photodiodes – small devices that convert light energy into electrical.

An important point! In general, a person faces daily photodiodes and their work. As an example, it is a photodiode responsible for lighting a smartphone. The photodiode determines how much illumination falls on it, and, based on this data, adjusts the brightness level

The same principle of full presence is also used in the helmet. In a set with a standard BP helmet, there are two stations that, at time intervals, let a pair of beams – this is a horizontal and vertical ray. They pierce the room and get to the photodiodes on the device of the helmet and controller. After that, the photodiodes begin their work, and in a few seconds, there is an exchange of information data, during which the sensors transmit the position of the controllers and the helmet.

This is the algorithm for creating a complete presence.

What are the varieties of VR

Officially, there are three varieties of virtual reality:

Simulation and computer modeling.

Imaginary activity.

Cyberspace and hardware.

VR helmets

The launch of interactive reality can be considered the creation of three helmets: 

HTC Vive

Oculus Rift

Samsung Gear VR

The main difference between these three gadgets is only in the manufacturing companies. In the rest they are similar. All three helmets are portable and provide full immersion in the gameplay.

Pros and cons of virtual reality


The ability to fully immerse yourself in an interactive dimension.

Getting new emotions.

Prevention of stress.

Creation of electronic information and training resources.

Conducting conferences.

Creation of objects of cultural heritage.

The ability to visualize various objects and physical phenomena.

The opportunity for everyone to move to a new level of entertainment.



Another obvious minus: virtual reality and its psychological impact on a person – it is far from always positive because there is a risk too much to plunge into the virtual world, which sometimes entails problems in the social and other spheres of life.

The high cost of devices.

The use of virtual reality


VR can be used in such areas as:

Training. Today interactive reality makes it possible to simulate a training environment in those areas and for those activities for which preliminary preparation is necessary and important. As an example, it can be an operation, management of equipment and other areas.

The science. VR makes it possible to significantly accelerate the research of both the atomic and molecular worlds. In the world of computer reality, a person is able to manipulate even atoms as if it were a designer.

Medicine. As it was mentioned, with the help of VR it is possible to train and train medical specialists: carry out operations, study equipment, improve professional skills.

Architecture and design. What could be better than showing the customer a mock-up of a new house or any other building object using such a reality? It allows you to create these objects in virtual space, in full size, for demonstration, whereas earlier manual mock-ups and imagination were used. This applies not only to construction projects but also machinery.

Entertainment. VR is insanely popular in the gaming environment. Moreover, demand is enjoyed both by games, and cultural events and tourism.

VR – is it harmful or not?

For the time being, it can be noted that no global studies have been conducted in this area, however, it is already possible to make the first conclusions. Since the VR is only just being developed (and it really is), many may experience unpleasant sensations with continued use of this technology. In particular, a person will feel dizzy and nauseous.

So far, there is no evidence that VR has a negative effect on vision. There is undoubtedly a negative effect, but it is not so great as to sound an alarm. Therefore, it is not yet known, If virtual reality harm or benefit.

VR – what does the future hold?

Today, the virtual reality is not completely finished, so unpleasant sensations can appear. In the future, there will be a lot of devices, copies and analogues that will not negatively affect the human body and psyche.

Also, VR devices will be able to solve problems with the consumption of information data, and the sessions will become as standard and ordinary as the usual games on the computer or consoles these days.


Virtual reality is still a bottomless abyss for research and improvement of work algorithms. Today, the technology is moving very fast, so we can say with confidence that in the near future the market value of the kit will be affordable for a person with an average income.


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