A young man named Jake Rye from the University Of Maryland collaborated with a team at Bitcamp to carry out an Oculus Rift modification called the Sixth Dimension Oculus. This technology enables the Oculus Rift user to simulate the experience of wind via the use of three electric fans.
While gaming, you can use accessories to increase realism, such as a steering wheel instead of a keyboard, accelerator pedals, guns instead of Spacebar, vibrating controllers, and more. However, I haven’t seen any wind simulators. The Sixth Dimension alteration of the Oculus Rift takes virtual reality to a whole new level. As it is, the ordinary Oculus Rift is already so realistic that I see peoples’ heads all over the place when they’re using them, as if it really has them engaged.
Video Credit: Major League Hacking.
This device doesn’t simply blow on you at intervals, it actually adjusts the speed of each fan depending on your head’s position, and with the assistance of an Arduino microcontroller.
As Jake Rye said: This technology enables you to ‘feel wind as its coming to you’, and ‘as you turn your head, you’ll feel wind coming from different directions’.
Real-time, automatic fan speed adjustment is normally achieved via the use of pulse width modulation (PWM) technology. Pulse width modulation-controlled fans are powered by pulses of electric current. To supply the fans with more current and increase their speed, the pulse stays on longer. In other words: pulsing (in this case) is turning electric current on and off many times per second, the longer the current is turned on relative to the amount of time it is turned off, the more the fan will receive, resulting in a higher fan RPM and greater airflow.
Apart from that, do you think that the Oculus Rift headset should be equipped with noise-isolating (or noise-cancelling) headphone technology to enhance it further? I think that would make it the ultimate virtual reality headset!
Sound off with your thoughts in the comment section.
Source: Major League Hacking (MLH).