Monthly Archives: December 2015

“Virtual reality will make us more empathetic humans” says HTC’s JB McRee


“HTC’s head of virtual reality JB McRee tells [The Telegraph] about the company’s high hopes for its Vive headset in 2016.

“In the future, VR will completely rewire the way our brains learn, he enthuses, with children in schools able to slip on a headset and find themselves in the middle of a historical battle. Through this they could pick up on the emotions of the people surrounding them, something McRee describes as “very powerful”.

He describes an incident when two police officers came into the US HTC office to try Vive, and said they could imagine it would help them deal far better with difficult situations in their jobs. Another use would be to allow the public to experience the kind of dangerous and stressful situations the police are faced with each day.

“Being able to educate like that would be really, really amazing. VR will make us more empathetic. And some people get really scared when I say that, but it’s true.”

By Rhiannon Williams at The Telegraph

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Emory Uses Virtual Reality To Treat Military Sexual Trauma Survivors


“At Emory University, researchers are using virtual reality to treat veterans who suffered sexual abuse in the military and now have posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Emory University psychiatry professor Barbara Rothbaum has been using virtual reality to treat anxiety disorders since 1995.

Rothbaum said wearing a virtual reality headset to see and hear the sounds from a particular place can help patients confront what happened.

“A lot of military sexual trauma survivors have avoided relationships, crowds, going to the gym, so we figure if we can place them in that situation and have them go back to the time of the memory and recount it over and over, we’re hopeful that that can help them even more than regular therapy,” Rothbaum said.”



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Virtual reality students explore phobia treatment


“Two engineering undergraduate students at the University of Santa Clara, Paul Thurston and Bryce Mariano, devoted their last semester of college in Spring 2015 to treat acrophobia, the fear of heights, with technology using virtual reality goggles to simulate the sensation of being at high altitude during therapy.

Mariano and Thurston envision that a certified therapist and a patient would use the goggles together. The patient would view the three-dimensional world from a simulated perspective on top of a building, while the therapist would adjust the levels and exposure amount based on emotional and physical cues.”

Image and text by Agatha Kereere at S.F. Examiner

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