Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Virtual Reality: Where Have We Been? Where Are We Now? and Where Are We Going?

Version 1 : Received: 5 July 2019 / Approved: 9 July 2019 / Online: 9 July 2019 (05:39:44 CEST)

How to cite: Kenwright, B. Virtual Reality: Where Have We Been? Where Are We Now? and Where Are We Going?. Preprints 2019, 2019070130. Kenwright, B. Virtual Reality: Where Have We Been? Where Are We Now? and Where Are We Going?. Preprints 2019, 2019070130.


The rising popularity of virtual reality has seen a recent push in applications, such as, social media, educational tools, medical simulations, entertainment and training systems. With virtual realitythe ability to engage users for specific purposes, provides opportunities to entertain, develop cognitive abilities and technical skills outside of the standard mediums (e.g., the television or theclassroom) thereby optimizing exposure with realistic (live) opportunities. However, before these applications of virtual reality become more widespread, there are a number of open questions andissues that must be addressed including limitations, challenges, relationships between fidelity, multi-modal cue interaction, immersion, and knowledge transfer and retention. In this article, we begin with a brief overview of virtual reality methods, followed by a discussion of virtual reality and its applications (both historically, currently and in the future). We review virtual reality trends both from the early artistic days through to current day state of the art technological advancements. We explore emerging and futuristic breakthroughs - and their applications in virtual reality - showing how virtual reality will go way beyond anything we could envision. Infact, after reading this article, we hope the reader will agree, that virtual reality, is possibly one of the most powerful mediums of our time. While the earliest mechanistic virtual reality prototypes (e.g., Sensorama) allowed us to view stereoscopic 3D images accompanied by stereosound, smells, as well as wind effect - set the foundation and direction for future pioneers - there have been spearheaded developments which have continually pushed the concept of virtual reality to new domains. As virtual reality evolves, many new and yet-to-be-imagined applications will arise, but we must have understanding and patience as we wait for science, research andtechnology to mature and improve. The article ends with a short overview of future directions based upon recent breakthroughs in research and what this will mean for virtual reality in the coming years.


virtual reality; immersive; trends; techniques; timeline; technologies


Computer Science and Mathematics, Computer Science

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