Once you’ve tried virtual reality, you know how amazing it is, but it can be hard to fully describe VR to someone who hasn’t tried it.

AMD, along with our technology partners at HTC Vive™ and with the support of numerous content developers, is making it possible for even more people to experience VR by providing hardware and software to libraries in four cities in the U.S. to help them establish VR labs. The libraries will collect anecdotal feedback from users about their experiences, and will also share their feedback about the tactical aspects of setting up VR labs in their libraries – from setting up and taking down the system when space is scarce, to determining staffing and establishing ideal hours. This information will be compiled into a document that will help other libraries and institutions learn about the practical aspects, benefits and challenges of bringing VR to their communities.

Libraries in Taylor, Texas; Cromwell, Connecticut; Boulder City, Nevada, and Santa Clara, California, are, or soon will be, immersed in the thrill of experiences such as: exploring the solar system, coming face to face with an 80-foot whale, stepping into the (virtual) shoes of an astronaut walking on the moon, joining ancient dinosaurs for a walk, painting in 3D using their hands as brush and palette and their imagination as their guide, Remembering Pearl Harbor, and much more!

 

Taylor, Texas – A rural library with a history of cutting edge technology

According to Betty Thompson, Technology Librarian, the Taylor Library has always been on the cutting edge of technology. “We were the first ones to have internet in this area way back when,” she said.  “That was back when people thought, ‘What do we need that for?’” Betty said, laughing.  Library Director Karen Ellis said that she and her entire staff are thrilled to be able to offer VR experiences to the community. “Everyone’s very excited about this,” she said.

Cromwell, Connecticut – Ready to be Amazed

Visitors to the Cromwell Belden Public Library were in for a surprise on May 10 as they tried out the new VR lab and experiences.  “We had people come in and try it from all age groups,” said Seth Ramos, Library Technical Assistant, “from teens to those over 65, and one maybe close to 90, and they loved it.”

Seth and the entire library team are thrilled to be able to offer this opportunity to the community. “I’ve been here at the Cromwell Belden Public Library for close to 7 years,” Seth said. “The idea of having virtual reality here is amazing.”

Terry Crescimanno, Adult Services Librarian gets immersed in a VR experience while Seth Ramos, Library Technical Assistant, stands by to help.

VR Experiences for the Libraries

We are thrilled that the following content developers have graciously agreed to participate with us to provide the following VR applications to the libraries:

3D Organon Anatomy, by Medis Media Pty Ltd

http://www.3dorganon.com/site//

An all-in-one Solution for learning clinical, topographic and systems-based human anatomy.

 

Apollo 11, VR Immersive Education

http://immersivevreducation.com/apollo11vr/

One giant leap for mankind. Experience the moon landing as an astronaut.

 

theBlu, Wevr

http://wevr.com/project/theblu-encounter

Transport into a gorgeous virtual reality ocean experience to have a close encounter with the largest creature on the planet. Imagine what it is like coming face-to-face with an 80-foot blue whale, whose eye ball is almost the size of your entire face.

 

GE Neuro, AMD Inc.

http://store.steampowered.com/app/496180/

Take a journey through the mind of musician Reuben Wu whose real life brain data was scanned with an MRI to create this VR portal into the human brain.

 

Google Earth, Google, Inc.

https://vr.google.com/earth/

Explore the world from totally new perspectives. Stroll the streets of Tokyo, soar over Yosemite, or teleport across the globe.

 

Lifeliqe VR Museum, Lifeliqe Inc.

https://www.viveport.com/apps/47590167-b266-41f8-a1cc-5a4b294425b1

Learn about a cell, join ancient dinosaurs for a walk, or visit a prehistoric settlement that dates back to the seventh century B.C.

 

Mars Odyssey, Steel Wool Studios

https://www.steelwoolstudios.com/project/mars-odyssey

Journey to mars and walk on the distant red planet to repair NASA’s Mars Exploration Rovers – including Viking, Pathfinder, Curiosity, and Opportunity – which have fallen under disrepair.

 

Remembering Pearl Harbor, Time, Inc. and LIFE VR

https://www.viveport.com/apps/987f821a-346f-4fa3-b101-e44bb6b6ed2c

TIME and LIFE VR take you back to that moment in history in this original historical virtual-reality project. The story is told through the point of view of Lt. James Downing, who at 103 is the second-oldest living American veteran to have witnessed that day.

 

Star Chart VR, Escapist Games Limited

http://www.escapistgames.com/

World’s first VR Planetarium! Explore the Solar System in a profound, beautiful and accurate real-time simulation.

 

Tilt Brush, Google Inc.

https://www.tiltbrush.com/

Tilt Brush lets you paint in 3D space with virtual reality. Your room is your canvas. Your palette is your imagination. The possibilities are endless.

 

Titanic VR, VR Immersive Education

http://immersivevreducation.com/virtual-reality-titanic/

Explore the shipwreck of RMS Titanic, and watch the events of 1912 unfold from a survivor’s viewpoint.

Preview

The VR Museum of Fine Art, Polar Software

http://store.steampowered.com/app/515020/

Surround yourself with 1:1 scale sculptures and paintings as you explore the VR Museum of Fine Art.

AMD is built upon the value of putting people first—our customers, our employees, our neighbors, and our communities around the world, and we’re excited to be able to introduce four new communities to this cutting-edge technology.

“For HTC Vive, libraries are an important place to demonstrate the benefits of learning in a virtual world,” said Daniel O’Brien, GM US, Vive. “Through this pilot program, we can demonstrate the foundational aspects of VR and also learn about the best ways to introduce these programs.”

Learn more about the AMD technology powering VR experiences at pro.radeon.com and www.radeon.com.

Follow us on Twitter for more news on VR.

Dee Dee Yelverton, Dee Dee Yelverton is Senior Developer Outreach Engineer for AMD. Links to third party sites are provided for convenience and unless explicitly stated, AMD is not responsible for the contents of such linked sites and no endorsement is implied.

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All photos are courtesy of LIFE VR