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Crossing the Line from Virtual to Real | @ThingsExpo #IoT #M2M #AI #Sensors

Virtual reality moves to Real Reality with sensors, feedback and digital transformation

I was on a high-rise construction site 34-floors above the city.  I was talking to the construction crew when a fight broke out. There was an explosion and the floor collapsed.  I removed the virtual reality (VR) goggles and laughed. It was so real. The VR solutions provided an incredible experience, almost like being there. As good as my experience was, it was not reality.  It was a controlled pre-programmed experience - a notional idea. Today, however, VR and sensor technologies enable a notional idea to become reality - a Real-Reality.

IoT sensors extend our physical senses beyond our physical reach. Haptic feedback systems enable us to physically feel distant objects and experience events; digital odors can be collected, profiled, transmitted and recreated locally on odor printers; 3D infrared scanners can capture and scale physical shapes and environments and transmit them anywhere to be used by 3D printers or in digital scenes. We can visualize, sense, and mentally and emotionally experience events. These experiences, which are data centric and data heavy, go far beyond virtual reality, to Real-Reality (RR).

Wikipedia defines reality as, "The state of things as they actually exist, rather than as they may appear or might be imagined."  With enough sensors collecting data, and with the right VR solutions and sensory feedback systems in place, we cross the line from virtual to Real-Reality.

Although many of these technologies are still in their infancy, they hint of a time very soon when the ability to bring distant realities into homes, industry and boardrooms are not only possible, but commonplace. The keys to making this future a reality, are collecting the right data, presenting the right data, all optimized to provide the best user experience.

How do we understand distance situations, activities, operations and events today?  In many cases a human tries to recreate the situation in words, and then forwards as an email or message. The obvious limitations are the lack of enough timely data, in the right context, and the writing and reading capabilities of those involved.  RR solutions with enough digital transformation including real-time sensors and sensory feedback systems can transmit experiences directly to our minds and bodies from anywhere in the world, thus bypassing the limitations of intermediary humans and written languages.

RR enables experts, from anywhere in the world, to manage factories, farms and other kinds of operations from distant locations.  The obstacles of the past that resulted in operational blind spots and incomplete information are quickly going away as RR quickly becomes a reality - real-reality.

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Kevin Benedict is an opinionated futurist, Principal Analyst at the Center for Digital Intelligence™, C4DIGI.com, emerging technologies analyst, and digital transformation and business strategy consultant. In the past 8 years he has taught workshops for large enterprises and government agencies in 18 different countries, and is a keynote speaker at conferences worldwide. He spent nearly 5 years working as a Senior Analyst at Cognizant (CTSH), and 2 years serving in Cognizant's Center for the Future of Work where he wrote many reports, hundreds of articles, interviewed technology experts, and produced videos on the future of digital technologies and their impact on industries. He has written articles published in The Guardian, wrote the Forward to SAP Press' book titled "Mobilizing Your Enterprise with SAP", published over 3,000 articles and was featured as thought leader and digital strategist in the Department of Defense's IQT intelligence journal. Kevin lectures and leads workshops, teaches and consults with companies and government agencies around the world to help develop digital transformation and business strategies. Visit his website at C4DIGI.com.