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Virtual Reality Headset Helps Navy Simulate Future Workspaces

By Government Computer News

February 27, 2014

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The Office of Naval Research's (ONR) Project BlueShark is helping the Navy experiment with a virtual reality headset for applications such as providing ship operators with a three-dimensional view of their environments.

Developed by the University of Southern California's (USC) Institute for Creative Technologies (ICT), BlueShark includes "virtual and augmented reality, virtual humans, artificial intelligence, and human-computer interfaces," says ICT.

The Navy is using a virtual reality headset to experiment with interfaces that might not yet be practical to build because technologies such as holographic displays and augmented reality windows do not yet exist at scale, says USC project director Mark Bolas. He says such technologies can be mocked up using the headset.

Furthermore, the headset's virtual environment can be rapidly adjusted to test cutting-edge interface concepts, such as command and control and telepresence, says ONR's Brent Olde.

The military is leading virtual reality development, but all agencies and departments should begin planning for implementations of the technology, according to a Deloitte Consulting report.

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