What is XR.Community?

xr.community is a group of enthusiasts of virtual, augmented, and mixed reality. We share our experiences, create tutorials, standards, and best practices and most of all, we want people to be aware of XR technology. A lot of us have a clinical or educational background and we see the vast potential of using XR in healthcare and education. However, everyone is welcome here, regardless of background, credentials, or experience.
 

What does XR Stand for?

XR stands for Extended Reality and is an umbrella term for virtual reality, mixed reality, augmented reality and anything in between. It takes the concept of the reality-virtuality continuum first introduced by Paul Milgram in 1994 and puts it into the context of human-computer interaction - users experiencing an extension of their reality through means of technology.

 

Who is behind XR.Community?

xr.community was started by Sebastian Koenig and his company Katana Simulations in 2018. Sebastian teamed up with Prof. Albert 'Skip' Rizzo, Prof. Pedro Gamito, A/Prof. Belinda Lange, and Denise Krch to extend the reach of the clinical XR and virtual rehabilitation communities. 
 

How Can I GET STARTED WITH XR?

There is only one way to start out with virtual reality: you have to try it. It's great to hear about it and have people explain what it is and what it can do, but there is only one way to understand how meaningful the technology really is - try it yourself. There are plenty of VR experiences in malls or theme parks these days. Maybe you can borrow a GearVR or other mobile headset from a friend or colleague. There are many opinions about ideal first VR experiences out there; many of them mention Tilt Brush, Job Simulator, The Lab, and Ocean Rift. Most games are available on Steam or the Oculus Store. If you have no idea where to start, contact us!

Augmented and mixed reality are not very accessible for consumers yet, but if you are interested in AR, check out Meta 2, Magic Leap, HoloLens, and Leap Motion.

 

What is Virtual Rehabilitation?

Virtual rehabilitation is a field of research and clinical practice in which a clinical treatment or recovery process is either substituted or supplemented by technologies associated with virtual reality, augmented reality, mixed reality or related concepts (such as exergaming, serious games, and artabilitation). Virtual rehabilitation is not specific to one particular clinical domain or patient population, but can be broadly applied to all fields involved in the rehabilitation process (e.g. Psychology, Psychiatry, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Speech Pathology), thus, making virtual rehabilitation a multi- and ideally an interdisciplinary field. The term “virtual rehabilitation” has been first described by Daniel Thalmann and Grigore Burdea in 2002 and published by Burdea in 2003. First success stories of virtual reality in rehabilitation come from treating phobias, post traumatic stress disorder, and distracting burn victims from medical procedures in the late 1990s. At the time, virtual reality was set up to fail with a market of extremely high expectations and a lack of technology advancement. Virtual rehabilitation quietly evolved throughout the 2000s with a small community of persistent engineers, clinicians and researchers combating a hostile funding environment and lack of public embrace and understanding. It was not until the breakthrough of companies such as Oculus, Samsung, HTC, and Valve between 2013 and 2015 that virtual reality, and consequently virtual rehabilitation were re-invigorated and received sufficient attention and funding to appeal to a wider consumer market. However, it is the lack of a coherent research methodology and scarcity of well-designed clinical trials that have prevented virtual rehabilitation from significantly impacting clinical practice to this date.