MARK Zuckerberg thinks we’ll eventually be able to create virtual worlds with “basically perfect fidelity”.
The billionaire Meta boss has his teams working on prototype headsets that can create a visually perfect Matrix-style world.
That’s a far cry from today’s VR headsets, like Zuckerberg’s Meta Quest 2.
The $299/£299 is impressive but doesn’t produce a perfectly real image – with few pixels, less-than-ideal brightness and fixed focus.
Facebook founder Zuckerberg told journalists including The Sun that he wants Meta to eventually create a “realistic” virtual world.
And his teams have already build several VR headset prototypes that try to solve some of the visual problems in doing so.
“Displays that match the full capacity of human vision are going to unlock some important experiences,” Zuckerberg said.
“A realistic sense of presence – the feeling of being with someone as if they’re physically there.”
The Californian tech mogul explained how current VR headsets have several problems.
One is that the resolution – the density of pixels that make up the image – is too low.
But Zuckerberg thinks this will change in the near future.
Another issue is that the focus is also fixed because physicals lenses can’t change shape like the ones in our eyes.
To fix this, Meta has created a prototype system that uses holographic lenses – projected, rather than physical – and eye-tracking to achieve adjustable focus in VR.
This means you’d be able to focus on different points in the virtual space.
We also need significantly higher brightness to create true high dynamic range.
But this means Meta will need to create lamps that can generate around 100 times the levels of current brightness in a pair of VR goggles.
“I don’t think it’s that long until we can create scenes with basically perfect fidelity,” the Harvard drop-out explained.
Meta is currently trying to build the metaverse – a set of interconnected virtual worlds.
It’s been described as the next generation of the internet, and will be explored in part using VR headsets.
Meta already offers a metaverse app called Horizon Worlds, where you can live, work and play – as well as meet up with friends or strangers.
But a true high-fidelity metaverse is probably a decade or more away.
“Current VR systems can give you a sense in another place,” Zuckerberg explained
“Hard to describe with words how profound that is.
“But we still have long way to go to get to this level of visual realism we have today.
“Human visual system is complex and deeply integrated.
To get that feeling of immersion, you need all of the other visual cues that go with that”
According to the Facebook boss, the ultimate aim is for the VR metaverse to look visually indistinguishable to reality for our eyes.
This means game- and app-makers could create extremely immersive virtual worlds for us to explore.
And we could even ditch some of our real-world belongings for virtual equivalents.
Zuckerberg asked: “Look around – how many things that are physical need to be?”
He pointed out that we’d still need physically functional objects like chairs – but maybe our TVs could be virtual.
Sadly, some of the VR tech solutions are years away.
But he added that eye-tracking (so the headset knows where you’re looking) will be added in the upcoming Project Cambria headset later this year.
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