The Complete History of VR – Part 15: The Lawnmower Man

The Complete History of VR – Part 15: The Lawnmower Man

In 1992 the Lawnmower Man movie introduced the concept of virtual reality to a wider audience. It was in part based on the founder of Virtual Reality Jaron Lanier and his early laboratory days. Jaron was played by Pierce Brosnan, a scientist who used virtual reality therapy on a mentally disabled patient. Real virtual reality equipment from VPL research labs…

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The Complete History of VR – Part 14: The Beginning of the End, of the Beginning

Virtuality’s 1000-SD series

Between 1990 and 1991 VR was going to be reaching out into all areas and VR gaming was something that got the most people excited. At the European Computer Graphics Conference And Exhibition in Montreux, Switzerland a man called Jonathan D. Waldern exhibited Virtuality, a VR arcade machine. Virtuality’s release surprised the existing VR industry. Despite crude graphics, it offered…

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The Complete History of VR – Part 13: PC Power

The Complete History of VR – Part 13: PC Power

It was clear VR had to be powered with a powerful PC, but how is a PC transformed into a magic carpet ride through a virtual world with hills, trees, and wide rivers? How can you use one to create such a world in the first place? By focusing on a PC solution it proved VR isn’t a technology restricted…

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The Complete History of VR – Part 10: Ready Player 2

At the height of the video-game craze in 1983, Lanier created a popular game called Moondust for Atari. The success of the game and the royalties it generated gave lanier the freedom to pursue the silicon Vally ethos of being an entrepreneur. A year later, VPL Research was officially founded and Scott Fisher from NASA came rocking. Sadly conservative companies…

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The Complete History of VR – Part 8: All Hands-On

The Complete History of VR – Part 8: All Hands-On

While at ARC, Fisher had met Thomas G. Zimmerman, the developer of a new kind of glove that could be used to measure the degree of bend or flex in each finger joint. Zimmerman had originally developed the glove with the intent of using it as an instrument to create music. By hooking it up to a computer that controlled…

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