And the geeks shall inherit the Earth – is this the future of VR?

Just started reading my new book, “Ready Player One”. Excellent so far!

The book is based on a dystopian future where everyone engages in a virtual reality environment that reminded me of Second Life – perhaps it could be the evolution of second life.

The designer of a Virtual reality software system called OASIS dies and leaves a fortune to the person who solves a complex puzzle and the main character seeks to find the fortune by following clues that only someone with intimate knowledge of pop culture could solve.The whole book is full of references to music, games and pop culture from the 80’s onwards. Its a Geekfest.

So far, we’ve had mention of many of my guilty pleasures, Krull, 80’s arcade games, 80’s home computers like the TRS-80, Commodore 64, Atari 2600, Dungeons & Dragons, Easter Eggs, Monty Python, The Last Starfighter (which is on Sky TV this week!), BBS, modems, Weird Science, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Betamax, Atari 800XL and more. I’m only on chapter 4.

VR has been around for a long time now but has been gaining some ground recently with the likes of HTC Vive and Oculus Rift. People are beginning to see some possibilities of how this technology could change our lives, particularly in areas such as education.

As a lecturer, I can fully see a future where students study from home without having to physically attend a school or college. Think of the advantages. The government could save millions. The students log in and find themselves in a classroom with their peers studying. With VR, they could go on field trips every lesson. Haptic feedback technology is also advancing rapidly now so again to crack VR users would still want some feedback from their environment. haptic gloves and bodysuits could fulfil this. At the moment these are being developed with gaming in mind but could easily be adapted for learning.

In the book, the VR school environments are still interactive lie the real world and have interesting ways of managing behaviour that we cant employ in the physical world.

I will update this post as I read more of the book.

And finally, they are going to make a film out of the book – I cant wait.

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pdclews

Lecturer in IT at East Berkshire College. Assessor & Verifier Technology Evangelist Hacker Tinkerer Collector of all things Retro Cyclist Kayaker Adventurer

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