Virtual reality in the e-Society

G. D. Magoulas, G. Lepouras, C. Vassilakis
Virtual Reality Journal, Special issue "Virtual reality in the e-Society", editorial preface

This special issue explores the extent to which virtual reality (VR) is affecting the creation of an electronic society. E-Society is a broad term used to describe a research area covering aspects of digital technologies for large user communities. Recent years have seen the emergence of various electronic services in an attempt to facilitate everyday life and improve the way common tasks are being carried out. Ôhe term e-Society covers a wide range of applications from e-government, e-democracy, and e-business to e-learning and e-health. In order for VR to contribute to the creation and advancement of e-Society, a number of issues have to be tackled. A successful VR system has to find a balance between the hardware requirements, user interaction methods, content presentation and the effort required for development and maintenance. Hardware requirements define to a large degree the extent to which an end-user can afford to execute the VR system at her home. User interaction methods have to cater for the variety of users¢ needs. Overall, design and implementation of a successful and engaging VR system is a rather difficult and complex task which requires increased effort in human power and resources in comparison to typical window based applications. Flexibility in development and subsequently maintenance of such a system can be achieved by adopting techniques already present in rapid application development environments, like abstraction, automatic code generation and reusability.

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