Virtual Reality Experience
Virtual Reality Experience

Virtual Reality Experience

Virtual Reality is Creating Change in Business Practices

By Mark Sivy

The notion of “virtual reality” can be traced back to 1938 when Antonin Artaud, a French playwright, actor and director, used it in a book written about theater. Later, in the 1970s, Myron Krueger coined the term “artificial reality” in reference to the interaction between humans and computers. Historically, this concept of having a virtual experience within a computer-generated 3D simulated environment has been nothing more than an exercise in science fiction for the masses. Even though the virtual reality systems that would enable this would have been in development for decades, their price tags and technological requirements have been enormous. Then came the introduction of wearable virtual reality headsets the past couple of years.

virtual reality

Virtual Reality Options

The media forerunner in this has been the Oculus Rift, which is a consumer-targeted virtual reality head-mounted display that is expected to be released in final version near the end of 2014. It made headlines recently when it was announced that the parent company, Oculus VR, was purchased by Facebook in March 2014. The current developer kit version of the Rift is available for $350 US. Similar personal computer-connected systems are under development by other companies such as the Sony Morpheus, True Player Gear Totem, Avegant Glyph, GameFace Mark IV, and Durovis Dive, thus we can anticipate a flood of this very highly anticipated technology into the marketplace during the next couple of years. Presently these systems are primarily being designed for either immersive gaming or for movie entertainment, but other uses of the system are certainly possible and are being considered.

True Player Gear

True Player Gear

Oculus Rift

Oculus Rift

Sony Morpheus

Sony Morpheus

Market Example

For one market example, imagine the advantages that these VR options would have for education. The levels of engagement, interactivity, collaboration, presence and visualization that these devices will offer can certainly be leveraged to the advantage of learning. In a recent Wired article, Brian Shuster discussed the likelihood of using virtual world environments for educational purposes. Even the Oculus Rift creator, Palmer Luckey, envisions educational uses of his creation in an article in Gamespot. In anticipation of the educational uses of VR, East Carolina University in North Carolina had established the Virtual Reality and Education Laboratory in 1992 and the university currently offers a concentration in VR within their Education Master’s degree program.

Our Abilities

Cosmic Surrounding Technology (CST) is at the forefront of developing alternative uses of these 3D display technologies. In terms of serious gaming, CST is exploring the application of game-based virtual reality for education and training purposes. Other uses that are being considered or developed include architectural rendering, product modeling, urban planning, and personal health. To read more about this and other CST solutions, see the interview article published in the Oman Observer.

Reflection Point: Virtual reality is a medium, a means by which humans can share ideas and experiences. ~ Alan B. Craig

 

Role of ICT

Role of ICT

The Role of ICT in International Business

By Fathi Al-Riyami

The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) claims the total number of people connected to the Internet worldwide is surpassed 2.7 billion in 2013, while the total number of applications downloaded over all types of devices exceeded 50 billion. Emerging markets stand to gain from innovative and disruptive information and communication technologies (ICT). Valerie D’Costa, a program manager with World Bank says “developing countries’ roles in the digital world have been mostly limited to users and consumers, not producers. But today, a growing mesh of digital services is giving rise to a new layer of entrepreneurial opportunities with very low entry barriers”.

ictOrganizations use websites to compete in the global market as a means to provide information about their products or services. In addition, merging ICTs such as virtual environments, social media and other online tools allows companies to communicate, display and promote their products and services to customers in real time through customized designs and platforms. With the use of innovative and disruptive technologies it is possible to reach out to different demographics through the use of trendy platforms and media. Such advanced setup can facilitate connections between businesses and new markets.

Businesses that rely on information, exposure and international trade stand to gain from ICT through increased customer interaction, clients receiving better product knowledge, increased sales, better customer service, reduced costs, and increased productivity. These are just some of the vast benefits they stand to gain as small business, large corporations and governments use technology to achieve various goals. Having the ability to empower the potential client by carefully crafting a creative process through the use of technology can provide beneficial opportunities of engagement within the international market. To do this effectively and in a manner that offers a simplified and humanized end-user experience is both a science and an art.

Reflection Point: In the business world, everyone is paid in two coins: cash and experience. Take the experience first; the cash will come later. ~ Harold S. Geneen