If you’re not knee-deep in social media developments like we are, you may have missed Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg showing off his newest project, the virtual reality system called Oculus Rift.
While it might not seem like a big deal, it is likely to be transformative for the way we interact with each other, including how we conduct business.
Word processing, video games, and social media have all drastically changed how we relate to one another. Virtual reality is no different. In fact, it could move us from talking on the phone or Skyping to entering virtual coffee shops for meetings. We could be virtually hanging out at a sporting event or enjoying time on the beach together while we’re sitting at our respective homes. It’s mind blowing like the fax machine was to our grandparents.
Because any reality can be created, there’s no end to what we might experience. The technology is already available with Oculus Rift. They’ve developed a system that includes high-resolution screens, 360-degree tracking and audio, all with an ergonomic design.
And this virtual reality works.
Our eyes update images every 5 or 10 milliseconds and Oculus can keep up. When you’re in the virtual reality, your eyes process what they see, send it back to the screen, and show it on screen within those few milliseconds. This is high end, SUPER fast technology that fully immerses users into a virtual reality.
What do you need to experience Oculus? An Oculus Rift and a compatible PC. Buy just the Oculus (complete with remote control and the familiar Xbox remote control) or one packaged with a laptop and you’re ready to experience the more than 100 virtual realities currently available.
Coming soon is the touch controller. While the current system allows for visual control, the touch controller gets your hand movements involved in the virtual reality. Grab items, fist pump, play ping pong; it’s a natural extension of your own body.
While gaming is, and will likely stay, the biggest source of content, the technology also supports video and non-gaming opportunities like that meeting at a virtual coffee shop or virtual team building experiences.
The Future of Facebook
Oculus Rift is not only a project of Mark Zuckerberg, the lab is housed within the walls of the Facebook corporate office. This begs the question of how Facebook might integrate virtual reality into its social network.
Recently there were concerns raised about the Oculus Rift Terms and Conditions which include allowing them to collect data for how you’re using the headset. Oculus responded by saying they weren’t selling data to Facebook or advertisers, only collecting data for their own marketing. Gamers aren’t convinced Oculus won’t share data with Facebook considering they are in the same building.