I remember thinking of virtual reality (VR) as a kid, dreaming about all the cool games it would support and how fun such an immersive experience would be—a true next-gen gaming experience.
However, what I didn't think of was how this technology could be applied to a vast array of industries.
From prepping surgeons for critical surgery to integrating the technology into a marketing campaign, the applications of VR (and it's cousin, AR) are growing. Just this week, a Sydney hospital deployed VR headsets to showcase new wards and improved spaces visually to employees, visitors, and patients.
It's motivating to think about how many more ways this technology could be applied to benefit society, such as replacing the need for painkillers in the hospital ward with an immersive experience that essentially tricks the brain into ignoring the pain.
The construction industry would see an equally valuable benefit. Imagine being able to conceptualise building schematics, at scale, and in person. This would give architects and engineers a whole new level of perspective when approaching the work they do.
I think we're only just seeing the tip of the iceberg with VR and AR technologies, and I'm excited to see where it's going to go from here. But how far could it go? Could we one day see businesses, communities or even whole societies operate on VR platforms?
Virtual reality technology is being embraced by one Sydney hospital as a key way of allowing visitors and staff to better engage with redevelopment of the site.