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PDF papers
authors Bollinger, Elizabeth and Hill, Pamela
year 1993
title Virtual Reality: Technology of the Future or Playground of the Cyberpunk?
source Education and Practice: The Critical Interface [ACADIA Conference Proceedings / ISBN 1-880250-02-0] Texas (Texas / USA) 1993, pp. 121-129
summary Jaron Lanier is a major spokesperson of our society's hottest new technology: VR or virtual reality. He expressed his faith in the VR movement in this quote which appears in The User's Guide to the New Edge published by Mondo 2000. In its most technical sense, VR has attracted the attention of politicians in Washington who wonder if yet another technology developed in the United States will find its application across the globe in Asia. In its most human element, an entire "cyberpunk movement" has appealed to young minds everywhere as a seemingly safe form of hallucination. As architecture students, educators, and practitioners around the world are becoming attracted to the possibilities of VR technology as an extension of 3D modeling, visualization, and animation, it is appropriate to consider an overview of virtual reality.

In virtual reality a user encounters a computersimulated environment through the use of a physical interface. The user can interact with the environment to the point of becoming a part of the experience, and the experience becomes reality. Natural and

instinctive body movements are translated by the interface into computer commands. The quest for perfection in this human-computer relationship seems to be the essence of virtual reality technology.

To begin to capture the essence of virtual reality without first-hand experience, it is helpful to understand two important terms: presence and immersion. The sense of presence can be defined as the degree to which the user feels a part of the actual environment. The more reality the experience provides, the more presence it has. Immersion can be defined as the degree of other simulation a virtual reality interface provides for the viewer. A highly immersive system might provide more than just visual stimuli; for example, it may additionally provide simulated sound and motion, and simultaneously prevent distractions from being present.

series ACADIA
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