With the development in technology, everyone is looking out for a variety of options and newer forms of recreation. The application of a scientific approach for inventing new devices is increasing day by day. There have been many attempts in this sector. One such attempt was AR and VR which we come across oftentimes. The newer the technology, the more is the need to try something new and advanced.

Before moving towards the history of AR and VR. Let us first understand the meaning of the terms. What are AR and VR devices and what do they do.

AR (Augmented Reality)

When we look at something or some view, a complete landscape or portrait is displayed right in front of our eyes that is a view which we call in a simpler language. Augmentation of the view or beautifying it more is the key What AR devices do is that they simply add some extra features to the existing live view digitally. In a broad language, they simply enhance an existing live view by adding some digital elements with the help of camera on a smartphone. Examples include various Snapchat filters, Pokemon-Go, Google sky map and many more. Here the actual view is modified digitally to look more appealing. For the game, AR technology is used to make the game more fun and interesting. With the AR technology, one can augment their pictures and make them more picturesque.

 VR (Virtual Reality)

Virtual world or the imaginary world is something which we imagine and doesn’t exist. But what if the place or scenario which we imagine exist and we can even feel it, live it! Well, that’s what a VR device do. It takes you to a completely​ different world from your present surroundings​ and you can see it and feel it, even though being completely virtual! VR technology implicit a complete preoccupation experience which cuts the person completely from the physical and external surroundings. The imaginary world created by the VR device uses 3-dimensional images in a series so that they appear more realistic and live.  The person is deeply engrossed in the Virtual World and is completely unaware of what’s going on nearby him. Using the VR technology, one can create a virtual and a hypothetical world or he can also modify the existing surroundings completely​. Using the VR technology, the person can be transported completely to an imaginary world comprising of snow all over, even though the person is physically present in a desert zone. Examples include Occulus rift, Google cardboard etc.

How did the AR VR technology come into existence?

The first-ever VR HMD ( Head-mounted display system ) system was The Sword of Damocles. It was created by a computer scientist Ivan Sutherland in 1968 with the help of his disciple Bob Sproull. Ivan termed VR HMD as the ” ultimate display “. Ivan Sutherland was very well-acknowledged​ for his contributions in the field of computer graphics. Ivan Sutherland along with his Co-workers first experimented the head-mounted displays of various kinds at the Lincoln Laboratory, MIT back in the year 1966. Since then it has been a subject of curiosity among the many computer graphics experts.


The Sutherland VR was just a makeshift model and lacked many features such as the user interface and realism weren’t up to the mark.  The graphics were very simple wireframe rooms. The display was also stereotypic. The HMD system was also very heavy which required a mechanical hand to support and hence the name the Sword of Damocles. The first HMD thus was very complex is use and was not handy. It had many disadvantages which required to be fixed.

The Final Development

Sutherland HMD model was primordial and attempts were made to assemble the parts of the device to make it fully functional and operational. By the end of the 1960s, Sutherland succeeded in integrating the parts into one. The first operational HMD was cubical in shape and was suspended in the air before the user. It also comprised of almost all subsystems like a clipping divider, matrix multiplier, headset, a normal computer, head position sensor, and a vector generator. All these components made our very first VR device. The first VR was however partially transparent, so the viewer wouldn’t be cut down completely from the surrounding. But neglecting this translucency, this VR was perfect and fully operational.



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