Developing Science, the VR Way


Virtual Reality is seeing massive adoption in the world of gaming. But, it is no more restricted to that zone or immersive tours of forests and underwater adventures. Instead, researchers and scientists, world over, now use the technology – VR goggles for understanding scientific data better.

Thus, to no one does it come as a surprise that companies are already developing focused solutions for this segment of users. At Caltech, for instance, efforts are being directed towards developing promising prototypes. And, these involve those that can study a variety of subjects –underwater worms to biomolecules and so much in between. The whole idea is based on a vision – what science will look like a decade from now.

Caltech – Efforts Decoded:

As Santiago Lombeyda, computational Scientist, Centre for Data Driven Discovery (CD3) explains – the idea is to simplify life for scientists. She states that tomorrow when a scientist is sitting at her desk, she should be able to work an environment just as stimulating. The goggles, VR or otherwise should recreate the field in a stimulating manner.

And this brings one to the question – why such enthusiasm? George Djorgovski, director of CD3, puts it succinctly – billions are pouring into VR gaming. Now, it is time to leverage the technology for where it really matters – science and scholarship. Furthermore, the man who is also a professor of astronomy at Caltech has been working on VR for some time. It has almost been 10 years. In fact, in 2015 he started his own company, called Virtualistics. And, it was a blend of machine learning and VR.

Keeping in mind this context, it does not come as a surprise that the company collaborated with Cancer Institute. The aim was to develop better tools for better diagnostics. And, it is heartening that they have already developed a fruitful environment which includes a headset for visualization.

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