Senses working overtime commentary

Virtual reality is extending beyond the headset as researchers tap into all five senses to find new ways to immerse users in electronic experiences. When these technologies converge, users will have complete immersion in virtual worlds bringing viable solutions for businesses with improved collaboration and development; for health with pain management and physical rehabilitation; for training and education; and for social media and entertainment.

via Senses working overtime from Shaping Tomorrow.

The dream of virtual reality has yet to be fully realized, but we are beginning to see greater progress toward the full immersion of all five senses into the digital world. One of my favorite developments is ScentScape, a digital device marketed as a gaming accessory which generates smells using scent cartridges. I have yet to see any convincing articles saying how many units have been sold or how receptive gamers are to the device, but they have some interesting ideas about consumers might use the device. First, there may be official scents for certain games, but also users could design their own custom scents for user generated maps or whole games which could then be emailed and generated by someone else’s device. Considering the passion some gamers have to developing their own games, maps, and apps, I think is quite plausible some would also want to capture or simply choose the right scent for their development.

Virtual immersion is not quite here, but the steps toward it are being made. The really interesting question is: what applications will these innovations find before they converge on full immersion? Click the link above to read the full article and view the sources which detail the current innovations.