Tech Review – VIVE VR

Redlands libraries wanted to finish their three Code Clubs with a bang, so they were loaned SLQ’s VIVE Virtual Reality (VR) equipment and Google goggles to test in their Cleveland, Victoria Point and Capalaba libraries.

Here are the top five learning points from Redlands libraries:

  1. There are a lot of cords involved with this equipment – the VIVE looks like something from a Si-Fi movie, with a spinal cord running down and connecting you to sensors and the laptop.
  2. The software can be a little difficult if it’s not connected to the internet before you load it up. Tyler from State Library of Queensland was fantastic in his role as Tech Guru and we can’t thank him enough for his assistance.
  3. People were fascinated with the technology but some coaxing was required for the first try. Participants felt safest in a seated position but once they got used to the space, they were ready to try almost anything. Sitting down seemed to help with people who were worried about the disorientation that VR can bring. In fact, we only had one instance of a kid needing some extra love from Mum. Time management became a key, with people quickly becoming lost in the experience and wanting to explore new worlds. The Google goggles helped fill in time for people waiting to use the VIVE, with some participants preferring the slightly less vivid experience.
  4. Everyone looks ridiculous in VR equipment! Our team enjoyed watching people twisting and turning like cats after a butterfly as they were inside the experience. Kids were giggling at their parents and vice versa. It was a hoot!
  5. Finally, we learned that we need more time. VR is fascinating, with immediate applications to things like checking out your potential home in real estate, fun park rides, walking through a potential holiday resort or even things like browsing the shelves. Once you have had a play, you want to go exploring the incredibly immersive experience – and a few minutes just aren’t enough.

About the author

Aaron Trenorden is a Library Technician at Redland Libraries who develops and implements training packages to assist clients with IT education including 3D printing, Scratch, Python, Arduino and Robotics.