Episode Information

WWL: Virtual Reality
Where We Live - with John Dankosky
Aired:
03/25/2009
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Doctor's orders: virtual reality

 

Episode Audio

45:33 minutes (21.86 MB)
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Ten years ago- the term “virtual reality”  existed mostly within the realms of gaming and science fiction.  But future virtual environments may change how some clinicians deliver health care.  New research shows that beyond the most basic uses of virutal environments--training pilots, for example--scientists and doctors are using VR to asses and sometime rehabilitate a range of psychological, cognitive, and motor disorders.

 Today, Where We Live, we’ll talk with leaders in the field, who are using manipulated settings and virtual humans to understand real-life problems.

 

 

*****Albert “Skip” Rizzo, the inventor of Virtual Iraq, will deliver a talk about the future of virtual reality research and its clinical applications on Thursday, March 26 at 12:30 p.m.  His presentation, “Clinical Virtual Reality: A Brief Review of the Future,” is sponsored by UConn’s Center for Health, Intervention and Prevention (CHIP) and will be held in CHIP’s second floor video conference room (Ryan Refectory, Room 204).


 
Related Content:

Virtual, but reality?

Great stuff! Where can I see pictures of Virtual Iraq?

Question: Where I get hung up with some VR research on human social interaction is the fact that, even though my heart may race and my fear instinct kicks in, I still know deep down that I won't actually die in a combat game -- so in fact, I'll take ludicrous chances with the knowledge that I can try it again. I know that I can get away with risky sexual behavior in a simulation because deep down I know I won't die of AIDS if I have unprotected virtual sex.

However, I will be careful if there are points or rewards for staying alive/healthy ... but is that realistic or simply virtually realistic?

thoughts on VR

It's likely that intense VR environments of familiar settings experienced by traumatized people would seem more real and consequential simply due to the fact that the real environment remains a tangible experience in the mind.  E.g. if a soldier in a VR Iraq can approach a building that in reality was blown-up in front of him, full of death and fire, that may be enough to make the VR setting as real as is needed to wake a strong memory or emotional response so that the trauma victim can begin a process of repair.  I'd imagine that it's the same effect that "Freddy" has on a 6 year old -- a simple suspention of disbelief -- what child dares to sleep after watching that?  Where Michael has trouble with this idea is that after hours of X-Box simulated war and countless horror movie sequels he's been desensitized and has mentally matured enough to know that what happens on screen is not necessarily reality.  Though, like me, I'm certain that if he'd ever been pinned down for a few hours by rockets and a rain of bullets, the VR war would take on an entirely new dimention, and an "extra life" wouldn't mean much if his VR Humvee hit a VR IED.  The idea seems, to me, to take the rampant fears of the soldiers and put these fears back into their control relative to their environment.  "What happens in the "triangle of death" doesn't have to be feared while driving to work on Rte. 91.