Like many things in science, what was once science fiction is now reality. Virtual reality was the stuff of science fiction movies less than twenty years ago, yet it is here in full form and common enough to be found in arcades and homes throughout the world.
Defining Virtual Reality
Anything that only seems real is considered virtual reality. The term virtual reality may bring to mind bulky helmets and awkward suits, but the virtual reality of today is much more compact than that. Even the latest game system, Nintendo Wii has virtual reality aspects.
Large Scale Virtual Reality
Large scale virtual reality is found throughout society in places you might expect and others you might not. The government uses virtual reality training simulators for military and space maneuvers. Airline pilots use virtual reality to stay brushed up on their flight skills. And kids in your neighborhood can tell you the best places to play virtual reality games.
Many arcades now carry virtual reality games or adventures. These systems are large and might involve a domed area or the helmets of science fiction virtual reality shows. You can now dance, run, shoot, play sports or more inside an alternate universe for a few quarters at a time. For others, they prefer their virtual reality at home.
Virtual Reality at Home
Virtual reality is available at home as well. The Wii from Nintendo has a specialized controller that can be used in a virtual sword fight or as a virtual golf club. Other games independent of the system allow for a virtual experience in any number of games or sports. Virtual reality will continue to grow in popularity and availability and may only be matter of time before we are all off on a grand adventure without ever leaving our chair.