1. Introduction

  • 1.1 What Is Virtual Reality?

    Virtual reality (VR) technology is evolving rapidly, making it undesirable to define VR in terms of specific devices that may fall out of favor in a year or two. In this book, we are concerned with fundamental principles that are less sensitive to particular technologies and therefore survive the test of time.

  • 1.2 Modern VR Experiences

    The current generation of VR systems was brought about by advances in display, sensing, and computing technology from the smartphone industry. From Palmer Luckey’s 2012 Oculus Rift design to building a viewing case for smart phones [122,243,311], the world has quickly changed as VR headsets are mass produced and placed onto the heads of millions of people.

  • 1.3 History Repeats

    Staring at rectangles How did we arrive to VR as it exists today? We start with a history that predates what most people would consider to be VR, but includes many aspects crucial to VR that have been among us for tens of thousands of years.