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There are many new technological terms that have appeared recently, such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), sustainable technology, Metaverse and more. Extended Reality is also one of the new technological terms that have appeared latest. In this section, we will explore everything about Extended Reality.
Extended reality (XR) is an umbrella term that encompasses all real- and virtual-reality experiences that blend the physical and digital worlds. It includes augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), and mixed reality (MR).
Augmented reality (AR) overlays digital information on the real world, such as Pokemon Go or Snapchat filters.
Virtual reality (VR) creates a fully immersive digital environment that users can interact with, such as the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive.
Mixed reality (MR) combines AR and VR, allowing users to interact with both digital and physical objects in real time, such as Microsoft HoloLens.
XR is a rapidly growing field with the potential to revolutionize many aspects of our lives. It is already being used in a variety of industries, including healthcare, education, manufacturing, and entertainment.
The History of XR
The history of XR can be traced back to the early days of computer graphics. In the 1960s, Ivan Sutherland developed the first head-mounted display (HMD), which allowed users to see computer-generated images in front of their eyes. This was the first step towards creating truly immersive virtual worlds.
In the 1980s, Jaron Lanier coined the term “virtual reality” and founded VPL Research, one of the first companies to develop VR headsets. VR headsets became more popular in the 1990s, with the release of products like the Nintendo Virtual Boy and the Sega VR. However, these early VR headsets were bulky and expensive, and they did not offer a very realistic experience.
In the early 2000s, interest in VR waned as the technology was still not ready for mainstream adoption. However, in recent years, there has been a resurgence of interest in VR, thanks to the development of more affordable and powerful headsets like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.
The Applications of XR
XR has the potential to be used in a wide variety of applications, including:
- Healthcare: XR can be used to train surgeons, provide therapy to patients with disabilities, and create immersive educational experiences.
- Education: XR can be used to create interactive learning experiences that allow students to explore different subjects in a realistic way.
- Manufacturing: XR can be used to train workers on new equipment, simulate dangerous situations, and create virtual prototypes of products.
- Entertainment: XR can be used to create new forms of entertainment, such as virtual reality games and movies.
The Challenges of XR
Despite the potential of XR, there are still some challenges that need to be addressed before it can become mainstream. These challenges include:
- Cost: VR headsets are still relatively expensive, which limits their appeal to the mass market.
- Hardware limitations: Current VR headsets are not yet powerful enough to provide a truly immersive experience.
- Content: There is still a limited amount of high-quality content available for VR headsets.
- User acceptance: Some people may be hesitant to use VR headsets due to concerns about privacy or safety.
The Future of XR
Despite the challenges, the future of XR looks bright. As the technology continues to develop, it is likely to become more affordable, powerful, and user-friendly. This will make it more appealing to a wider range of consumers and businesses.
As XR becomes more mainstream, we can expect to see it used in a variety of new and innovative ways. It has the potential to revolutionize many aspects of our lives, from the way we learn to the way we work. We are only just beginning to scratch the surface of what XR is capable of.
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