[PHOTO: FLICKR USER AGUSTÍN RUIZ, ILLUSTRATION: AGSANDREW/ISTOCK]
AICEX: Un post per chi vuole capire l’essenza vera della realtà Virtuale. A partire dal Design. Perchè forse solo uscendo dal nostro Mondo riusciamo a comprenderlo davvero.
From training diverse workforces to understand each other to putting product designers in the shoes of their customers, VR is poised to be far more than just a game.
Researchers at Stanford are running “virtual shoes” experiments in which people “viscerally embody avatars” that encounter various forms of prejudice, based on age, race, economic status, and disabilities. Then, subjects are tested for changes in empathy levels toward these groups. After positive initial results, the team is now partnering with neuroscientists to demonstrate how these experiences–which they quite clinically call “self-other merging”–can physically change the brain to reduce bias.
Social innovators are tapping into VR to deepen citizens’ identification with disadvantaged people and places. After screening its documentary on a 12-year-old refugee in Jordan, Clouds over Sidra, in 360-degree video, UNICEF more than doubled its annual fundraising haul. Pencils of Promise, which builds schools for children without access to them, used the same technology to show what learning feels like before and after access to a decent learning environment. More recently, an immersive experience called Notes on Blindness stole the show at the Tribeca Film Festival, by putting the “audience” in the mind’s eye of someone who is blind. 3D sound was the star here, showing that VR’s power transcends fancy visuals.
But empathy-driven VR isn’t just for advocates and academics, it has value for business, too.