From 3D on a screen to Virtual Reality
Most often we present 3-dimensional graphics on 2-dimensional displays.
What is the potential for presenting 3D information in a way that it can be
percieved as 3D?
Virtual Reality = Computer Graphics in Real Time + Immersion
+ Interaction + other perceptive feedback (touch, sound, smell...)
Terminology by K.-P. Beier
The term 'Virtual Reality' (VR) was initially coined by Jaron Lanier, founder
of VPL Research (1989). Other related terms include 'Artificial Reality' (Myron
Krueger, 1970s), 'Cyberspace' (William Gibson, 1984), and, more recently, 'Virtual
Worlds' and 'Virtual Environments' (1990s).
Today, 'Virtual Reality' is used in a variety of ways and often in a confusing
and misleading manner. Originally, the term referred to 'Immersive Virtual Reality.'
In immersive VR, the user becomes fully immersed in an artificial, three-dimensional
world that is completely generated by a computer.
Characteristics of Immersive VR
The unique characteristics of immersive virtual reality can be summarized as
- Head-referenced viewing provides a natural interface
for the navigation in three-dimensional space and allows for look-around,
walk-around, and fly-through capabilities in virtual environments.
- Stereoscopic viewing enhances the perception of depth
and the sense of space.
- The virtual world is presented in full scale and relates
properly to the human size.
- Realistic interactions with virtual objects via data
glove and similar devices allow for manipulation, operation, and control of
- The convincing illusion of being fully immersed in
an artificial world can be enhanced by auditory, haptic, and other non-visual
- Networked applications allow for shared virtual environments