Japanese engineers develop headset-less VR system

July 18, 2017
The 8K:VR Ride resembles a cross between a theme park ride and a miniature IMAX theatre

A virtual reality "space ride" in which viewers feel as if they are flying through the air inside a giant glass ball has been developed in Japan.

Unlike conventional VR systems, the "8K:VR Ride"—which resembles a cross between a theme park ride and a miniature IMAX theatre—does not require users to wear any headgear.

Instead they are placed on two swivelling, elevated chairs just in front of a semi-spherical screen which entirely engulfs their field of .

"Unlike the conventional flat screen, you can see images coming closer to you physically in this dome screen," said Makoto Nakahira, an engineer at Wonder Vision Techno Laboratory.

"This is a system in which you can experience visuals that you have never seen before."

The experimental technology was unveiled to Japanese media for the first time on Tuesday before a scheduled showing at Japan's Digital Content Expo 2017 in October.

Its name refers to the screen's super-high definition 8K , which is 16 times more detailed than most current HD images.

Wonder Vision co-developed the system with Japan-based NHK Enterprises and NHK Media Technology—both affiliated with public broadcaster NHK—and RecoChoku Labo.

The space ride was first showcased at SXSW 2017, a major conference on convergence in the interactive, film and music industries, in Austin, Texas in March.

The features a hemispherical theatre known as Sphere 5.2—a screen 5.2 metres (17 feet) wide, 3.4 metres tall and 2.6 metres deep.

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antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (1) Jul 19, 2017
The experimental technology was unveiled to Japanese media for the first time on Tuesday before a scheduled showing at Japan's Digital Content Expo 2017 in October.


Experimental?
I looked at this on youtube and it looks very much like some of the rides you could find at Disneyworld (or many other amusement parks) since the 1980's. It's neither 3D nor really VR (for VR I expect to be able to turn my head in any direction. This just covers your field of view if you look straight ahead). The movable seats have also been around in arcade games and rides since...forever. It's a mini-Imax with a hydraulic seat. Geez.

I fail to see what is getting people excited about this. There's nothing new except the 8k resolution (and really. Who cares about resolution beyond the point where you have no pixelation effects?). Particularly in a place like Japan this should cause not much more than a stifled yawn.

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