VR and AR have promised us a future where we can lose ourselves in virtual worlds. The one thing stopping us from doing this now is, surprisingly, the controller.
Ignoring the fact that proper VR headsets like the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift are expensive, the experience, from a visual standpoint, is quite compelling. That said, interacting with the virtual world that the headset will take you to is far from compelling.
HTC and Oculus both have touch controllers that can track your hand movements and, in the case of the Rift, a limited tracking of your fingers. Most controls still come down to button and trigger presses.
Want to grab something? You point at it with the controller and press a button. It’s, well, not natural.
An update from Mark Zuckerberg, who owns Facebook which owns Oculus, indicates that the a fix is already in the works.
If you’ll look closely at the images he’s posted, there’s one in which he’s sitting in a booth with a Rift headset on. He’s surrounded by sensors and, more importantly, wearing a glove and making like Spiderman.
As Zuckerberg himself says, “We’re working on new ways to bring your hands in virtual and augmented reality. Wearing these gloves, you can draw, type on a virtual keyboard, and even shoot webs like Spider Man. That’s what I’m doing here.”
The rest of the images sow off some of the cool things that Facebook is working on, including a clean room, an anechoic chamber and a fancy machine for quickly prototyping the lenses used in VR headsets.
This technology isn’t going to arrive anytime soon, but it’s nice to see someone at least working on it.
Who knows, maybe 5 years hence we’ll all be chasing each in VR, swinging from rooftop to rooftop in a very spidermen-like fashion, and accidentally swatting our cats off the table while we’re at it.
Publish date: February 10, 2017 6:20 pm| Modified date: February 10, 2017 6:20 pm