School of Media Arts and Studies faculty Josh Antonuccio and John Bowditch were recently featured in the Winter / Spring issue of PureTimes Entertainment Magazine. From the PureTimes article by Samuel Vincent (PDF) which focused on the exciting technological possibilities provided by the Oculus Rift and its potential use in MDIA curricula:
The Oculus Rift is a virtual reality device that will change the way we game, communicate, and connect with the world of media. In development since 2011, the Oculus Rift offers users a complete virtual reality experience, unlike any other. With its 360-degree field of view, 3D imaging and real space audio, the Oculus Rift completely immerses its users into the virtual world.
It contains 40 infrared LEDs that track the motion of its user. This allows the user to interact with graphic objects in what seems like real space. It also uses two AMOLED screens, which do not smear images as the user interacts with the immersive world.
Ohio University School of Media Arts and Studies professor Josh Antonuccio began beta testing the Oculus Rift late in the fall of 2014. This was done along with his School of Media Arts & Studies colleague John Bowditch, who oversees the Ohio University Game Research and Interactive Design Lab.
Antonuccio states that as an educator in immersive storytelling, "I was interested in how sound design affected the virtual world of gaming." When he and Bowditch began talking about the potential for educational modules and gaming, he immediately began working with the technology.
Antonuccio's main interest in the Oculus Rift is to explore how it can be used for much more than gaming. "It can be used to train people for work related jobs that are too dangerous for real life situational training. It can (also) be used to treat people with anxieties without putting them in a real life situation," states Antonuccio.
"If you wanted to learn why a species went extinct, you could experience what it went through, so you could understand. It could be used to create history lessons by taking the shooting experience out of a game like Assassins Creed, and you could explore each city as if it were modern day. You could even take a tour of Jurassic Park or Seinfeld's apartment. The user is only bound by what they don't do with it."
Learn more in the original article by Samuel Vincent for PureTimes (PDF)