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Virtual Reality

Sports industry gears up for virtual reality revolution

From training with Major League Baseball pitchers to bone-jangling racing on board an F1 car, technology's potential to revolutionize sport was the hot topic as industry leaders met in London this week. "It's going to disrupt all aspects of sport that you can imagine," virtual reality expert Michael Ludden told the two-day Leaders Sport Business Summit at Chelsea's Stamford Bridge stadium. Ludden said that virtual and augmented reality -- together known as mixed reality (MR) -- would transform sport for professionals,…

Saudi women entrepreneurs grow their ventures at US incubator

WASHINGTON: Reem Dad, a 22-year-old from Saudi Arabia, is developing a platform for pilgrims and tourists to experience a virtual reality tour of Madina Munawwara, one of Islam's holiest sites. Heba Zahid, 37, is working on GreenDesert, a venture that would be one of the first to help create a recycling culture in the Middle Eastern country. Dad and Zahid were among 14 young women social entrepreneurs from the kingdom who recently attended an intensive program at Halcyon, a Washington-based business incubator, to turn…

Phones for urns: Hong Kong turns to virtual reality to honor ancestors

HONG KONG: A lack of space for cemeteries in crowded Hong Kong clashes with the age-old Chinese tradition of reverence for one’s ancestors. But one entrepreneur uses virtual reality software to reconcile the two, allowing people to honor Confucian traditions of filial obligation in the territory where it can cost up to $130,000 to store the ashes of loved ones. Anthony Yuen’s firm, iVeneration.com, offers users the ability to create virtual headstones anywhere in an augmented reality landscape of Hong Kong, including…

Virtual reality boom brings giant robots, cyberpunk castles to China

GUIYANG, China: Giant robots and futuristic cyberpunk castles rise out of lush mountain slopes on the outskirts of Guiyang, the capital of one of China’s poorest provinces. Welcome to China’s first virtual reality theme park, which aims to ride a boom in demand for virtual entertainment that is set to propel tenfold growth in the country’s virtual reality market, to hit almost $8.5 billion by 2020. The 330-acre (134-hectare) park in southwestern Guizhou province promises 35 virtual reality attractions, from…

Swimming with dolphins in virtual reality to aid disabled

APELDOORN: Swimming with wild dolphins is something most can only dream of, and jumping into pools with captive animals has become increasingly controversial with environmentalists condemning it as cruel. But a Dutch non-profit believes it has found a way to bring people, especially the disabled, closer to such a joyful experience through the technological, immersive advances offered by virtual reality (VR). The Dolphin Swim Club is the realisation of a more than two-decade journey by artist Marijke Sjollema, who had her…

Rec Room open beta to launch on PlayStation VR

Rec Room, the virtual reality social club where you play active games with friends from all around the world, will be launched in open beta on Playstation VR on November 21. Shawn Whiting, Community Designer at Against Gravity, makers of Rec Room, made the announcement on the official PlayStation Blog saying that they received an incredible response from the community after launching Rec Room PS VR closed beta last month. Therefore, in order to include as many people as possible in the beta they have decided to launch…

Scientists launch virtual reality game to detect Alzheimer’s

LONDON: Sea Quest Hero is more than just the usual computer game in which players find their way through mazes, shoot and chase creatures -- it also doubles as scientists' latest tool for studying Alzheimer's disease. The game -- downloadable from Tuesday in its virtual reality version -- seeks to stimulate players' brains through a series of tasks based on memory and orientation skills, while gathering data to research dementia. One of the first symptoms of Alzheimer's is loss of navigational skills. But data…

Microsoft to start shipping Windows Mixed Reality developer kits

Microsoft has partnered with Acer to bring the Windows Mixed Reality Developer Kits to the Xbox One and the upcoming Project Scorpio console in 2018. The company said that it is building Windows 10 to be the most complete platform across a broad range of mixed reality devices and experiences, which can empower new waves of creativity while being affordable and attainable for everyone. Last year Microsoft had announced to partner with leading device makers including Acer, ASUS, Dell, HP, Lenovo, and 3Glasses on a wide…

Virtual reality hopes to treat mental health problems

BARCELONA: Virtual reality headsets are often associated with video games and fun, but companies are also working to use them for mental health therapies, to treat phobias, anxiety or addictions. Some phobias, for instance, can be effectively treated by gradually exposing a patient to his or her worst fear, be it spiders, plane travel or small, enclosed spaces. TeleSoftas, a Lithuanian firm that develops mobile apps, believes this exposure therapy can easily be achieved from the safety of a health professional's…

Facebook’s Oculus ordered pay $500 mn in suit on stolen tech

WASHINGTON: A US jury on Wednesday ordered Facebook and creators of its Oculus Rift to pay $500 million to gaming software firm ZeniMax in a lawsuit that claimed the virtual reality technology was stolen. The Texas jury made the award in a trial in which Oculus was accused of basing its Rift headset on technology stolen from ZeniMax's virtual reality software, court documents showed. The lawsuit claimed Oculus founder Palmer Luckey and his colleagues developed the virtual reality gear using source code illegally obtained…