- perceive with the eyes; discern visually
- discern or deduce mentally after reflection or from information; understand
Did you see that TV show? Did you go to that concert? Did you attend the information session? The way we experience events as VR and AR become integrated in our day to day activities may change our perception of what is classified as a ‘real’ experience, with no differentiation between attending in reality or virtual reality.
Today, we always differentiate between what we see recorded on TV, and what we see live. VAR* is quickly infiltrating all sorts of industries from entertainment to research. Even theme parks are turning to VR to bring a new twist to old rides. With the current trajectory of VAR development, I don’t doubt that in my lifetime it may become hard to differentiate between what is a real or virtual experience. In fact, attending a concert or show in VR may even provide a better experience to some people who would otherwise not participate. For example; no lines, or crowds, wearing sweatpants to attend a fancy show, easy access to showers and bathrooms and for big festivals like Coachella, a comfortable place to sleep.
Then there’s the other dynamic of VR that offers an experience beyond what is possible in physical attendance. Check out this AnyOrbit navigation for 3D environments. What I like about this in comparison to other shifting views in 3D environments is that it allows full 360 degree freedom in VR while still directing attention. So while it provides a focal point, which at a concert would be the main stage, the perspectives it allows are obviously a different experience than what physical attendance would provide.
Even I find it difficult to imagine completely replacing live experiences with virtual attendance at this point, but as younger generations grow up with this technology, will there be a closing divide when differentiating between virtual and physical experiences? How important is physical presence? Or could that one day be a thing of the past?
Interested to hear your thoughts on this!
*VAR- Virtual and Augmented Reality