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  • Virtual Becomes Reality: Pop Culture References that Predicted How Virtual Reality Can Affect Lives

    From movies to music videos, the world of pop culture has always dabbled with the ever-fascinating possibilities brought forth by the technology of Virtual Reality. It is, after all, in human nature to want what’s beyond our reach and that—to an extent—is what VR does.

    As such, we’ve gathered some instances in pop culture as seen on film, TV, and heard through music that showed how virtual reality can affect lives.

    Tron & Tron Legacy

    There’s no denying that the entire gaming experience can be amped ten-fold if done in the 3D setting. Of course, there’s no sign that we’ll be able to literally jump into cyberspace in the near future, it still gives us a glimpse into what VR can do—and is already doing—to the world of gaming.

    The Lawnmower Man

    This Stephen King classic delved at the possible negative side effects of VR. As with everything else, there is a thin line that can easily be crossed. It’s really up to people to make use of technology for just the right reasons.

    Demolition Man

    VR makes fantasies as true as can be. And where else do fantasies run the most amuck than in the bedroom? Demolition Man predicted a not-so-intimate take on the most intimate of moments.

    Music Video for “Amazing” by Aerosmith

    Scene from Aerosmith's "Amazing" music video Scene from Aerosmith's "Amazing" music video

    Two decades ago, Alicia Silverstone was every red-blooded teenage boy’s fantasy. The music video for “Amazing” brought one on-screen boy’s fantasies to life via his Virtual Headset. Only it turns out, he was living in her virtual reality instead.

    Music Video for “I Got You Babe” by Cher featuring Beavis and Butthead

    Virtual dating is a decades-old concept. Generation X’s favorite hilarious dimwits got to go on a dream date with Cher back in the nineties.

    “Virtual Insanity” by Jamiroquai

    There’s no doubt that VR offers a lot of good possibilities. But with vicarious existence being so enticing, it’s not far-fetched to assume that it can get twisted or that some folks just might end up spending too much time in the virtual world and not nearly enough in the real one.

    With the availability of just the right apps, any experience can be yours virtually. And as cliché as it may seem, the future really is now. Yet at the same time, something tells us that we have barely begun to scratch the surface of what virtual reality can bring.

  • Five Practical (and Fun) Uses for Google Cardboard

    There was a time when many of us thought virtual reality was nearly impossible, and could only be within reach to those who were:

    1. related to George Jetson, or
    2. very, very wealthy.

    Now, thanks to Google Cardboard, VR is just a few folds away. Even what techies refer to as “entry-level VR” definitely has a lot of uses.  With its easy-to-assemble design and its many  compatible apps, you can have both enjoyable and practical activities at your fingertips.  Let's take a look at five matter-of-fact (but fun!) uses for your Cardboard.

    1. Never get lost.

    Having a virtual map like Google Street View means you can practically never get lost in any city or country you'll find yourself in.  Now, thanks to the Cardboard app and your kit, Google Maps for Android allows you to turn a regular street view into a binocular one. At the same time, you can be all touristy, see the sights,  and view new surroundings the same way you would in real space.

    The Orbulus has become a favorite app among early Cardboard users because it allows you to go anywhere and everywhere. This means famous cities, unexplored locations, holidays in different countries, and even leisurely walks on other planets!

    2. Attend important events and get a first-person view of the action.

    Hong Kong Unrest

    Currently in the works is a new multi-platform app that showcases important news events around the world like the recent Hong Kong pro-democracy demonstration. With it, you can “witness” the event and be part of the audience to really get a feel of what the gatherings were all about. Immersive.ly has produced documentaries in VR and 360-degree videos so users can emotionally connect to the event. This kind of app paves the way for other essential documentaries by journalism outfits to be featured and experienced by anybody and everybody.

    3. Use both hands for DIY projects and other practical stuff.

    A peripheral created specifically for use with VR kits aims to complete the virtual reality experience – while being totally hands-free. This will be extra useful if you need a step-by-step guide on a DIY project or are at the receiving end of fitness instructions. One of I AM Cardboard's products is the EVA, which is a sturdier and more durable version of the Cardboard kits. Best of all, it features a head strap! This handy little accessory makes hands-free VR a lot more doable and useful.

    4. Get entertained.

    Lamper VR

    From games to virtual reality theater, your Google Cardboard will prove to be a handy and entertaining experience for you. Lamper is one such app where you can experience how it is to be a small bug in a huge, threatening world. Go through obstacles and get a real consciousness for what the challenges the games pose. You'll feel like a real winner in the end!

    5. Go see a movie.

    VR Cinema for Cardboard allows you to view your favorite MP4 files into a split-screen versions for a truly immersive cinematic experience. Any movie can become a 3D virtual reality experience with this app and your I AM Cardboard kit. Many other cinematic VR projects are currently being developed or fine-tuned for use with your Cardboard gear. We'll be sure to spread the word as soon as we get wind that they're ready and available for you!

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