The high immersive accommodation of basic absoluteness is often accustomed as its main virtue when compared to other media and advice technologies. It is indeed a defining virtue. However, when it comes to the virtue that could really position VR as a able absolute technology in the market, we have to look at accession key feature: avatar embodiment. 

Avatars are agenda entities that represent users in a basic world. When we embody an avatar, it becomes our body in basic reality. We have ascendancy over its movements. If we look down, we see the body of our avatar where our real body would commonly be. If we look into a basic mirror, we see ourselves adapted into that avatar.

Our avatar is also the way in which other people in the same basic world see us. In turn, we also see – and collaborate with – other users through their avatars.

Not all basic absoluteness adventures absorb avatar embodiment, though. In fact, it is still not common to have full avatar apotheosis in mainstream VR products. For instance, we are used to using a head-mounted affectation (HMD) to anticipate a basic mural in which we do not have an avatar, or in which we only saw its hands.

Similarly, we are used to arena online games in which we see our avatar on the screen and ascendancy its movements with a joystick. We wouldn’t accede this to represent an avatar apotheosis experience, though, as it lacks the spatial accompaniment amid the user’s body and that of the avatar.

Experiencing an avatar as if it was our own body

When we embody an avatar, something amazing happens. We acquaintance the apparition of body ownership, as if the avatar has briefly become our own body, a abnormality that has been widely appear in basic reality.

Researchers have also found that, in accession to body ownership, our sense of self gets transported to the body of our avatar. In a way, we become our avatars while we are in VR.

The avatar apotheosis apparition is accomplished using visuomotor synchronization amid our body and the avatar. To do this, users are about able with an HMD, which is a device worn on the head that allows them to anticipate immersive environments while occluding the real surroundings.

Users’ gestures are tracked and mapped to the avatar with the use of body tracking technologies so that the user and the avatar are synchronised. Hence, if we raise our right arm, the avatar raises its right arm accordingly. Head movements are used to update the angle in the basic ambiance in real-time.

The rubber hand illusion, which was a alluring cerebral agreement conducted in the late nineties, helps us to accept why buying illusions over avatars occur. 

webrok

In the rubber hand illusion, the subject’s hand is hidden and a rubber hand is put in its place. As the rubber hand and the subject’s real, buried hand are stroked in a synchronised manner, they acquaintance a sense of buying over the rubber hand and lose a sense of their own, real hand.

Multisensory correlations amid our real body and a fake limb or basic body – either in the form of visuomotor (as in basic reality) or visuotactile correlations (as in the rubber hand illusion) – seem able to easily deceive our brain. The brain fairly bound interprets the fake body or limb to be a part of its own anatomy.

Note: You can easily carbon the rubber hand apparition at home by bushing out a rubber glove and asking addition to accompanying brush your real hand (out of sight) and the filled rubber globe with two thin paint brushes. You should start acquainted the after-effects in less than two minutes. 

Avatar apotheosis can modify our behavior

Researchers have been belief the cerebral furnishings of avatar apotheosis adventures for more than a decade. There is cogent affirmation that these adventures are able of modifying our behaviors and even elements of our cognition.

One of the first empiric demonstrations of this transformative accommodation was named the Proteus EffectThis effect, accurate in the late 2000s, describes a abnormality by which the actualization of an avatar has the adeptness to modify the behavior of the person that embodies it.

The Proteus Effect is linked to the way in which people accessory assertive traits with the actualization of an avatar. We might, therefore, engage in assertive behaviors in acknowledgment to what we accept is accepted from our avatars, based on the actualization that the avatar has.

Some of these antecedent abstracts showed that participants with more adorable avatars appear more claimed advice and approached other avatars more readily when compared to other participants with less adorable avatars.

Also, they showed that participants with taller avatars displayed more aplomb in a negotiating task compared to participants with beneath avatars.

webrok

VR advisers have been exploring how avatar apotheosis transformations could potentially be useful to society. Could they accommodate us with tools to become the best accessible versions of ourselves not only in basic absoluteness but also in our real lives?

Importantly, we have affirmation that the behavioral changes consistent from avatar apotheosis adventures can abide even after the basic absoluteness acquaintance is finished.

Among many other findings, we now know that avatar apotheosis adventures can be used to animate pro-environmental attitudes and prosocial behavior or to decrease social phobia. These adventures can also help reduce negative stereotyping of the elderly or forms of racial bias.

Recent studies have looked not only at behavioral and attitudinal changes but also at cerebral modifications. They got hasty findings, such as the fact that avatar apotheosis can even increase cerebral performance.

Figure 2. The beginning setup. The body of the actor was commissioned by a gender-matched VB, viewed from 1PP, on to which body and head movements were mapped in real time. (A) The Einstein basic body. (B) The Normal basic body. (C) Participants were fitted with an HTC VIVE head-mounted display, and their body movements were tracked by 37 OptiTrack markers. Source: Frontiersin.org

Note: The reader might be apprehensive whether avatar apotheosis adventures could additionally abnormally access our behavior or lead to adverse consequences. In a previous article, we noted the absolute gap of studies that appraise the abeyant abrogating outcomes of avatar apotheosis adventures and acicular out some ethical, moral, and legal issues that need to be promptly addressed. 

VR as a absolute technology

Virtual absoluteness is seen as more than a tool for ball or communication, but the applications and allowances of basic absoluteness in areas such as health or apprenticeship could be decidedly added if avatar apotheosis adventures are implemented.

So far, the transformative accommodation of avatar apotheosis has mostly been explored in beginning contexts through studies conducted in avant-garde VR labs, principally, the Virtual Human Interaction Lab at Stanford University and the EventLab at Barcelona University.

It is important to advance these allegation beyond the walls of laboratories, as they are key to unlocking the full abeyant of basic reality as a absolute technology.