Researchers at the Vienna University of Technology have developed a virtual reality (VR) system that enables users to step into a labyrinth and wander an endless maze of rooms and corridors, but without actually leaving their living rooms.
Users wear a VR headset, and the system tracks their body and head movements and guides them through sets of virtual spaces as they pace around within a real physical space. The VR system automatically generates corridors and rooms as the user moves, in a manner that will limit the person to the real space available.
The researchers note that users will not realize that they are walking around in circles. "People think they are walking in much larger environments," says Vienna University's Hannes Kaufmann. "We can simulate rooms connected by corridors, and we could simulate outdoor areas in which certain areas are restricted."
The developers hope to tweak the system to accommodate another person, which would enable two people in the real world to meet simultaneously in the virtual world and explore simulated environments.
From New Scientist
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