Imagine if we could throw away the controllers of old and instead plug ourselves into a game console. We’d experience the sights, smells, and other sensations of a virtual world as though they were actually real.
Granted, I’m not sure I’d personally want to experience half of what goes on in certain video games, but in 2005 Sony patented such a theoretical technology in hopes that it will one day be possible. The tech wouldn’t just be for gaming, of course.
“The technique suggested in the patent is entirely non-invasive. It describes a device that fires pulses of ultrasound at the head to modify firing patterns in targeted parts of the brain, creating “sensory experiences” ranging from moving images to tastes and sounds. This could give blind or deaf people the chance to see or hear, the patent claims.”
– Sony patent takes first step towards real-life Matrix, NewScientist
That’s far off, no doubt about it, and it’s already been 8 years; we’ve made little progress on the virtual reality front, aside from systems like the Oculus Rift.
And even that’s a far cry from Matrix-like entertainment and true virtual worlds. And there are patents for everything (including teleportation!), so you never know where this stuff is going to go, if anywhere.
But, honestly, it’s only a matter of time…
I just wonder what would happen if you ran into a glitch in the system. What would that feel like?