Virtual Reality did not start in 2014…
But in fact, was first imagined and demonstrated in the 1960’s by Ivan Sutherland and Mort Heilig, true pioneers who envisioned an artificial environment that would enable people to do things only seen in dreams. Their efforts were crude and awkward, especially by modern standards. But they created the first hardware that led to today’s amazing VR and AR systems.
Virtual reality had its commercial takeoff in the 90s, with dozens of head-mounted displays, talk of virtual drug trips, excitement about cybersex, and the potential to change everything from the way we vacation to the way we educate our children. How much of that promise has really been realized?
Much of what we're seeing today in the conversations about virtual-reality, online and in the press, is not much different from what we heard 25 years ago. There's the same uninformed excitement, the same crazy promises, the same questions about the philosophy of virtual worlds, and many of the same technical difficulties that existed in the 90s. It seems that today's VR pioneers don’t know the history of virtual-reality, and therefore, as Santyana predicted, are repeating it.
This book of over 400 pages provides the history and the excitement of those times, and presents many of the applications, technology, and people who created virtual-reality in the 1990s. It includes more than 80 images and is fully indexed.