Body swapping now possible with new virtual reality technology

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Believe it or not, living the life of your favourite star or even your pet dog is now a possibility, at least virtually, as a group of artists have now developed a project to experiment body swapping.

 

“The first few seconds are just overwhelming,” Rikke Frances Wahl, a woman participant who temporarily became a man, was quoted as saying.

 

The artists hope that the project would help people shed many inhibitions and do away with bias against people of different ethnicity or race, said a BBC report.

 

For swapping bodes, the user and the performer (as the two volunteers are called) don virtual reality headset with a camera placed on the the top of it.

 

“We use camera mapping of the user’s space, and digital compasses to track the user’s head and body direction,” described the webpage of the project.

 

“As for the performer, we use a subjective camera controlled by servomotors, which is synchronised with the head position,” it added.

 

So if you move your arm, your partner sees it and vice versa.

 

Studies have shown that virtual reality can be effective in fighting implicit racism – the inherent bias that humans have against those who do not look or sound like them, BBC reported.

The adoption of the modern trend of virtual reality is readily evinced by the announced acquisition of virtual reality headset maker Oculus VR by Facebook for $2 billion in March.

 

The move by Facebook prompted much criticism, with many industry experts question if Zuckerberg was a visionary or a loony. Others also wondered by Facebook would be able to change the future of VR gaming – the primary application for the technology, apart from simulations.

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