People have speculated on the possibility of exploring other worlds for ages. Ever since the dawn of the written world, we’ve tried to escape from our mundane reality and let our imagination soar. Of course, now, with virtual reality, we are one step closer towards truly immersing ourselves into worlds we’ve never seen before. Nevertheless, we tend to neglect the very essence of what makes our own reality so beautiful. However, not everyone is blessed with the opportunity to have perfect sight. In fact, more than 3.4 million Americans aged 40 years or older are legally blind. These people don’t have the opportunity to have the visual experience most do, but virtual reality headsets may be about to change this fact and create a kind of VR vision.
A little over a month ago, Jamie Soar, a UK man who suffers from retinitis pigmentosa, was able to see the world we live in through a virtual reality headset. While retinitis pigmentosa isn’t as serious as some other conditions that affect eyesight, it still renders the visual abilities of those suffering from with highly impaired eyesight. In fact, in the case of Jamie Soar, who is also myopic (near-sighted) and constantly sees double, the condition led him to navigate during the night or in dark areas.
Vision Through Virtual Reality
To be able to look at an object, Soar would have to get as close to it as possible. In a recent interview he explained that he was extremely interested in virtual reality technology with regard to his condition.
“Part of me thought that something strapped to my face might work because of my reliance of things being up close.”
With that idea in mind, and to avoid having to lean in as close as he can to objects in order to see them, Soar went on a journey to find the right technology and people to help him out. Making a trip to England, Soar tried out the HTC Vive. Once he put the headset on, he managed to see an entirely new world.
“Try VR. Find a means to try it, because I went so long without ever knowing that this extra dimension existed that you can see, ” he stated.
A Virtual Future
Looking back, we can often see different revolutions taking shape before they actually happened. Starting from the industrial revolution, through personal computers and the internet, we are able to gaze upon the wondrous times of change that have passed. However, we often miss what we are witnessing right now. Today, case after case in which virtual reality has helped people immensely, we are slowly but surely starting to adapt to a new medium that is able to transport us to new worlds. Nevertheless, as in the case of Jamie Soar, virtual reality can also help us experience the world we live in through a whole another perspective.
With virtual reality making strides in so many different directions that can improve our businesses, our leisure, our ability to live life in a higher state of luxury and even our ability to connect with others around the world, it is very easy to forget the impact it is already having on our health, wellness and fitness. This is just one example. Living with impaired vision can be like a life sentence of solitude and despair. VR can help.