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Virtual Reality


Latest significant advancements in virtual reality. Reporting on the far-reaching impacts of improvements in VR on society and humanity.

How Virtual Reality Can Transform Who You Are

In virtual reality, as far as our brains are concerned, it’s quite possible to become an entirely different person. At VR Days Europe, an annual gathering of augmented and virtual reality professionals, Mel Slater, professor...

Tech Interfaces Need to Get Better. Extended Reality Can Help

Throughout history, we have used tools—hammers, canes, paintbrushes—as natural extensions of our bodies. These tools seem to disappear into our hands. But today’s electronic devices are unlike the simple tools of the past; they’re...

The Many Ways Virtual Reality Promises to Improve How We Care for Our Health

Virtual reality has become a booming business. The technology has already proven its worth in real estate and banking. In healthcare, VR also shows big promise. According to Statista, the virtual reality healthcare market...

Inside a $1 Billion Real Estate Company Operating Entirely in VR

Born during the aftermath of the financial meltdown a decade ago, a publicly-traded real estate brokerage called eXp Realty is establishing itself as one of the brightest rising companies in its industry—and one of...
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VR Fireside Chat: Inside a Virtual World Full of Surprises

Two weeks ago, I gave my first virtual reality presentation—a virtual fireside chat with my friend Philip Rosedale, the CEO of High Fidelity and creator of Second Life. At the time, in conjunction with the...

Delivering VR in Perfect Focus With Nanostructure Meta-lenses

If wearing a virtual reality or augmented reality headset is ever to become commonplace, hardware manufacturers will need to figure out how to make the devices small and lightweight while ensuring their images are...

How Big Is the Gap Between ‘Ready Player One’ and Current VR Tech?

Steven Spielberg's blockbuster Ready Player One depicts a future where VR technology can transport people into a completely realistic alternate universe. But how close is real-life tech to that vision? Much of the coverage of...

The World Needs More Scientists: How We Can Train Millions in Virtual Labs

California wild fires, melting arctic ice caps, and record setting temperatures suggest our climate is dramatically changing with potentially catastrophic outcomes for our species. Add to that an increase in the threat of infectious...

The 7 Hub Stories That Got the Most Social Media Love This Year

I bet you think 2017 was a hot mess, a relentless series of tragedies and catastrophes that exposed humanity for what little it's worth. Let us re-instill in you a sense of optimism with...

Reality 2.0: A Way to Upgrade Your Perception of Reality

Imagine enhancing your perception of the environment around you, other people nearby, and even yourself. Imagine reliving past experiences as if they are happening right now. Imagine a crumbling border between physical and virtual...

The Power to Give Anyone, Anywhere the Skills They Need Is Within Reach

On a recent Friday afternoon, I was summoned to the top floor of a technology accelerator in San Francisco’s Soma neighborhood to meet Tom Impallomeni, a serial entrepreneur who promised to teach me to...

This Self-Driving AI Is Learning to Drive Almost Entirely in a Virtual World

I don’t have to open the doors of AImotive’s white 2015 Prius to see that it’s not your average car. This particular Prius has been christened El Capitan, the name written below the rear...
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Film ‘Unrest’ Is an Intimate Look Into Life With a ‘Disease Medicine Forgot’

In an interview at Exponential Medicine in San Diego, documentary filmmaker Jennifer Brea shared her difficult yet powerful journey with chronic fatigue syndrome. Brea was a healthy PhD student at Harvard University, about to marry the...

Reactive Content Will Get to Know You Intimately—Then Tell You the Perfect Story

The best storytellers react to their audience. They look for smiles, signs of awe, or boredom; they simultaneously and skillfully read both the story and their sitters. Kevin Brooks, a seasoned storyteller working for...

Virtual Reality Is Reshaping Medical Training and Treatment

Arthur C. Clarke, a British science fiction writer, is well known for once writing, “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” Consumer virtual reality is going through a rough patch as high expectations and...

Future Lighthouse Sketches Out the New Language of Immersive Storytelling

In an interview with Pascal Finette at SU’s Global Summit in San Francisco, Nicolás Alcalá dived into the future of immersive filmmaking and storytelling. Alcalá is CEO and founder of Future Lighthouse, a virtual reality studio based in Los Angeles and...

VR Promises a Surprising Tech Alternative to Painkillers in Deadly Opioid Crisis

As the United States teeters on the brink of a national state of emergency, more than 100 Americans now die every day due to opioid overdose. Ted Jones, a clinical psychologist with Pain Consultants...

New Virtual World Sansar Is Ready to Pick Up Where Second Life Left Off

On its 14th birthday, a reflection on Linden Lab’s groundbreaking Second Life, and how their next project Sansar hopes to go even further. In May 2006, Bloomberg’s Businessweek ran a cover story detailing the business...
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Watch: Ray Kurzweil Predicts When We’ll Be Able to Program Matter

Ray Kurzweil is an inventor, thinker, and futurist famous for forecasting the pace of technology and predicting the world of tomorrow. In this video, Kurzweil predicts when he thinks we’ll get programmable matter—or the...

How to Make VR Experiences That Actually Matter

It seems like everyone is making a VR app these days. From recording concerts in VR to designing your next kitchen, brands and individual developers around the world are expending incredible amounts of effort...

Cybersecurity Pros Will Soon Patrol Computer Networks Like Agents in ‘The Matrix’

Security analysts could soon become the first employees asked to show up to work inside virtual reality. Thanks to a new virtual reality tool built by the Colorado-based startup ProtectWise, cybersecurity professionals may soon be...

These 5 Big Tech Trends Are Changing the Way We Learn

Our current education system is not fit for purpose. Student mental health is at an all-time low, and student debt is at an all-time high. Dominated by uninspiring curricula and an over-emphasis on short-term...
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Is ‘Strange Beasts’ a Preview of the Sad (Augmented) Reality Ahead of Us?

Strange Beasts is a British short film reminiscent of the dystopian Netflix drama Black Mirror—and it packs an equally strong punch in about a fifth of the time. The film starts out with a game...

The Power of VR as an ‘Empathy Machine’ and Office Holodeck

Virtual reality has a long history in science fiction. From the Lawnmower Man to the Matrix, the idea of VR has inspired artists and gamers alike. But it’s only very recently that the technology...

You Can Ban a Person, But What About Their Hologram?

If you think augmented reality is only fun and games, consider that we’ve already witnessed the first known police action taken against hologram technology. During the summer of 2015, a performance by controversial gangster-rapper,...

How Google Is Revealing Unmapped Areas of the World in Virtual Reality

Technology companies left and right are developing new gadgets to advance virtual reality as an immersive entertainment and gaming platform. Others however, like VR producer Chris Milk, have hopes that the technology’s potential will...

Why the Potential of Augmented Reality Is Greater Than You Think

Never before have businesses been able to build billion-dollar valuations in so little time. Never before have incumbent enterprises been able to go out of business so quickly. Disruption is now commonplace, and augmented...

Here’s How to Make the Best of Virtual Reality—and Avoid the Worst

“I can’t wait to see the art that people make with this.” Those were the first words from my friend Ryan after spending ten minutes in virtual reality. He’d just tried Tilt Brush, an incredible...

Robot Cars Can Teach Themselves How to Drive in Virtual Worlds

Over the holidays, I went for a drive with a Tesla. With, not in, because the car was doing the driving. Hearing about autonomous vehicles is one thing; experiencing it was something entirely different. When...

Art in the Age of AI: How Tech Is Redefining Our Creativity

Technology has long been considered a resource-liberating mechanism, granting us better access to resources like information, food and energy. Yet what is often overlooked is the revolutionary impact technology can have on our ability...

Get Ready to Love Math With This Sweet VR Calculator

“Our universe isn’t just described by math, but it is math in the sense that we’re all parts of a giant mathematical object.” – Max Tegmark I knew virtual reality was going to make mathematical education...
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Watch a 91-Year-Old War Vet Revisit the Town He Helped Liberate in VR

What if you could travel around the world with the click of a button, the only requirement being a headset and internet connection? Virtual reality is already making this possible for those who seek...

Is Virtual Reality the Surprising Solution to the Fermi Paradox?

“If the transcension hypothesis is correct, inner space, not outer space, is the final frontier for universal intelligence. Our destiny is density.” –John Smart Only decades into our “age of cosmology” — the moment when we...
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Think Tech Is Blurring Fact and Fantasy? Just Wait

Are you questioning the validity of news sources and headlines lately? You’re not alone. As the end of 2016 is upon us, media's role in society has never been shakier. From social media bubbles to...

Can Virtual Reality Sidestep the Paradox of Time Travel?

Most physicists agree that time travel into the past is impossible, but what if virtual reality (VR) could provide a workaround? Doron Friedman is the director of the Advanced Virtuality Lab (AVL) at the Interdisciplinary...

Will VR Disrupt the Airline Industry? Sci-Fi Show Meets Press Virtually Instead of Flying

A proposed benefit of virtual reality is that it could one day eliminate the need to move our fleshy bodies around the world for business meetings and work engagements. Instead, we’ll be meeting up...

Fear of the Dark: Why Netflix’s ‘Black Mirror’ Is Great Science Fiction

Legendary science fiction author Isaac Asimov once said, “The core of science fiction, its essence, has become crucial to our salvation, if we are to be saved at all.” With its aim to predict and...

Forget Building Walls, Technology Is Tearing Them Down

With all the talk of building walls, it seems to me that technology has actually been rapidly tearing down walls. Besides your passport, what really defines your nationality these days? Is it where you were live?...

Is Choosing Your Own Reality All It’s Cracked Up to Be?

As rapid improvements in virtual reality technology make it possible to create and live in worlds perfectly tailored to our needs, are humans nearing utopia? The idea of a VR utopia was introduced to the...

Overhauling How We Teach Our Kids in a World of Accelerating Change

Here in L.A., it’s kind of insane that a great kindergarten requires a competitive application and tuitions that exceed most colleges. I started asking myself, given the fact that most elementary schools haven’t changed in...
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Answers to 4 Big Questions About the Future [Video]

I give over 50 keynotes per year. My favorite part is fielding the crazy questions at the end. In fact, I love answering questions about exponentials and abundance so much that I've been encouraging my...

This Amazing Robotic Glove Lets You Touch the Virtual World

“Seeing is believing.” While there may be some truth in the old adage, it forgets a crucial component of how we interact with the world: touch. Touch makes things real. Imagine reaching out to grab your...

How to Train Thousands of Surgeons at the Same Time in Virtual Reality

Recently, I wrote about how the future of surgery is going to be robotic, data-driven and artificially intelligent. Although it’s approaching fast, that future is still in the works. In the meantime, there is a...

“It’s a Powerful Time to Reshape Healthcare Across the Planet”

We are living in a world that is global and exponential. Technology is taking things that used to be scarce and making them abundant—and these forces are reshaping the fields of medicine and healthcare...

No Technology Thrives Alone: Progress Is All About Convergence

15 years ago, Ray Kurzweil published one of the most significant essays in the history of futurism: “The Law of Accelerating Returns.” This piece showcased the immense power of exponential technology versus linear technology...

The Future of Sex, Dating, and Finding a Mate

Sex is one of the most powerful, fundamental human drives. It's caused wars… built and destroyed kingdoms. It occupies a significant percentage of most people's thoughts. As such, it's worth a conversation about how exponential technologies will...

The 21st Century Is a Wild Time to Be Alive

Last week in San Francisco, Singularity University hosted its first-ever Global Summit. In three days, we heard over 100 science and technology experts give talks in more categories than one human mind can fully...

VR Pioneer Chris Milk: Virtual Reality Will Mirror Life Like Nothing Else Before

“I don’t think the future of VR looks like video games; I don’t think it looks like cinematic VR; I think it looks like stories from our real lives. It’s the most amazing afternoon you’ve...

The Future of Healthcare Is Arriving—8 Exciting Areas to Watch

As faculty chair for Medicine and Neuroscience at Singularity University and curator of our annual Exponential Medicine conference (apply to join us this Oct 8–11th), I cross paths with many technologies which have potential...

Paralysis Partially Reversed With Virtual Reality Tech in Surprising New Study

On June 12th, 2014, the world watched in awe as a young paraplegic kicked off the World Cup in Brazil with the help of a robotic exoskeleton controlled by his brain. Now, the team behind...

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