Teenage boy with big chunky goggles playing video games. For a lot of people this is the first image that occurs to them when asked about Virtual Reality
But there is more…
Imagine watching the Champions League football final in Barcelona. You’re in the stadium with 90 000 fans feeling the roar of the crowd , enjoying the game …or jumping from a plane together with Brad Pitt in his new action movie and then… you take off your VR glasses and you’re at home, sitting in your favorite chair. The only limit is your imagination.
With the right tools all this is possible now …” but that’s where I think we just start to scratch the surface of the true power of virtual reality. It’s not a video game peripheral. It connects humans to other humans in a profound way that I’ve never seen before in any other form of media. And it can change people’s perception of each other. And that’s how I think virtual reality has the potential to actually change the world.”
These are the words of the director Chris Milk to the audience of 2015 TED Talk in Vancouver. Milk is one of the founders of the VRSE, a virtual reality Filmmaking Company. But he is also well known for making music video’s for artists like U2, Arcade Fire, Kanye West and many more.
On one of his first VR projects Milk teamed-up with Gabo Arora –a senior adviser for the United Nations.
The result of this collaboration was the 8 minute long documentary called “Clouds over Sidra” exploring the day-to-day life of 12 years old Syrian girl together with 80,000 more refugees in the Za’atari camp in Jordan.
So now, for the first time, it’s possible for the audience to experience the life of a refugee first hand without even going to another country.
More documentaries by VRSE exploring important existing issues are scheduled for release later this year.
There are countless possibilities and great use cases where the VR technique can be deployed but there is one very important aspect according to Chris Milk :
“Through this machine we become more compassionate, we become more empathetic, and we become more connected. And ultimately, we become more human.”
In the beginning of November, The New York Times send out to it’s 1.1 million print subscribers free Google Cardboard headset .Via the free New York Times app the subscribers are able to see another VRSE made video called “The Displaced”