Yesterday I had my first virtual reality experience. My socks were knocked clean off.
It was one of those funny face-mounted binocular setups, where you clip your phone in front of the lenses, and the phone goes into some special VR mode, and the lenses distort the screen to present the correct image to each eye.
The setup definitely suffered from a slight pixel-density problem. The phone has enough pixels to look flawless when taking up only 1/100 of your field of view, but plugged into this setup, it’s taking up all of your field of view, and that loses the finer details. You could not read text this small.
On the other hand, the head-tracking was… perfect. It really made me feel like I was hovering over a lake, not sitting on a carpet in someone’s living room. The experience was actually a little disturbing: Samsung was telling me, “Spencer, this is how badly your senses can lie to you.”
Man, contrast this with my class project this quarter: some lousy glove that can tell where along which finger your thumb is touching. We’re having trouble getting a single glove to give reliable thumb-position measurements – there are big piles of hardware problems. And here, this magical mask can near-flawlessly trick my body’s most sophisticated sensory organs. I am deeply envious of the level of technical expertise that went into this setup.