Escaping into a virtual world right in Roscommon County is now possible, since the Roscommon Area District Library obtained two virtual reality headsets.
RADL Library Director Casey Adams said a $2,000 grant from the Roscommon County Community Foundation’s Wade Family Donor Advised Fund made the purchase of the Oculus Rift units possible.
Adams said the units have educational and entertainment value.
Once the wearer places the goggles and headphones of the Oculus Rift unit on, any number of programs may be accessed, from views inside the human body, to 3D videos to Hulu TV shows and movies.
A tutorial features virtual views of a forest landscape, a view from tall city buildings and a dinosaur that gets what appears to be quite up close to the viewer. By turning one’s head, extended views of scenes may be seen.
RCCF Executive Director Suzanne E. Luck said she got slightly motion sick while using the device.
“This is really cool technology,” she said. “It’s just another great program the library is able to provide.”
Adams said it is a pilot program for other libraries in the county.
“The goal is for other libraries to have it,” he said.
Adams added that comfort levels may be chosen to minimize motion sickness.
The library also has two Google Cardboard units. Scenes may be viewed by placing a smartphone inside the fold – although it might be wise to view the roller coaster scene while sitting down!
Article and Photos by: Cheryl Holladay of the Houghton Lake Resorter