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Wi-Fi could protect you from getting lost in virtual reality

person wearing a virtual reality headset
alvarez/iStockphoto
Jul 24 2017
Fellow, Research, Stanford

You’re at home playing a virtual reality (VR) game on the Oculus Rift, dodging zombies like a pro. But then you step too far back or look behind you, and suddenly you’re frozen in space, as the system’s infrared cameras can no longer see the lights on your goggles and it loses track of you. Instant brain food. Now, researchers have come up with a way to spare you such a frustrating end by using standard Wi-Fi technology to enhance VR’s tracking abilities. In addition to improving VR, the technology could also help track robots or drones and streamline motion capture for movies.

Researcher Manikanta Kotaru is a 2013 Thomas and Sarah Kailath SGF.

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