When I was a kid I used to hold up a piece of colored plastic or stained glass and all of a sudden I’d be in Yellow World or Planet Blue. It happened to me so it must have happened to you and I shall allow myself the extravagance of extrapolation: people love to see stuff in ways they’re not used to. Knowing that it’s perfectly safe makes it ten times more attractive.
The Oculus Rift has been with us for some time. This March they announced their second development kit.
I’m sure there are plenty of sayings that contain “first steps” and “hardest” and will quote none of them.
One could safely assume that the idea for a virtual reality helmet dates back quite a while. But now that it’s here for real real, not for play play people are starting to add two and two together and this makes for a pleasant scenario. It’s a great tool for military training. Give it a few more years’ tweaks and professionals from all walks of life will be training with it.
People could use it to go through what bothers them over and over again until they overcome their mental anguish. They are currently being used to rehabilitate people who suffer from PTSD. Amputees suffering from phantom limb syndrome or in the frustrating process of prosthetic training could find solace in this VR headset. Communication. Architecture. Art. Entertainment. The list goes on.
We’ve established that the Rift has many positive uses and we’re now heading to the gray area. Sex. Best described in the video below:
Boning, the Wild Mambo, the Hunka Chunka
Sex and technology mix so well because sometime, somewhere humanity decided that anything with electricity and silicon chips had to be tested using our genitals. And because of Rule 34.
In any case, the coalescence of sex and the Rift will undoubtedly result in a new wave of moral debates, finger-pointing and religious criticism. The most enthusiastic predictions infer that people would be free to express their sexuality in previously unseen ways.
The pessimistic ones arrive at the same conclusion. In other words, people will most likely feel unhindered in carrying out their fantasies, even if they involve the most outrageous instances of sexual activity. Like Oculus VR founder Palmer Luckey said: “you can’t control these things. If you’re an open platform that lets people build anything–then the people are going to build anything. And you can’t be surprised when people make a thing that you didn’t make or maybe you prefer didn’t exist.”
The same scenario applies to violence. This has lead some people to question the impact the Rift will have on the human psyche, specifically asking whether the proximity to virtual sex and violence will smudge the all-so-well established barriers in real life. These people will be labeled as haters. This battle has been fought before, on the basis of video games and their ability to morph all of us into Grand Theft Auto protagonists. By all accounts, that’s only happened to the most stupid of individuals and let’s be honest, they would have found inspiration in other media if video games didn’t exist.
But the issue raised is whether to condemn a gadget for enabling humans to express their nature. We share 98 percent of our genome with chimpanzees and they are prone to violence. We share the same percentage with bonobos and they have a sexual approach to all aspects of life. Unlike Californication, the natural world relies on Fucking or Punching. My point is that human nature, sometimes coupled with and sometimes obstructed by nurture always gets the best of us.
The Oculus Rift is a great invention regardless of the game of mercantilism it had to play to get here. And no matter what use society dictates, I’d love to go skydiving in my living room. This brings me to my final point.
I intended to write this article about a roller coaster-Oculus Rift combo that shows great potential. It seems like a match made in heaven, a blend of gravity, centripetal force and virtual reality. When riding a roller coaster you can pretty much see the next turn and anticipate the movement but with a helmet on you’re a victim to surprise and have no idea what the next rendering will be. If roller coasters failed to leave you with a lasting impression save for the visceral punch physics packed, you better pray the VR Coaster becomes a reality soon. It’s worth it.