Valve developer discusses advantages of virtual reality over augmented

Valve’s Michael Abrash, one of the R&D developers working on wearable computing, says that “[virtual reality] is poised to take off well before [augmented reality].”

Valve's Michael Abrash, one of the R&D developers working on wearable computing, recently blogged "[virtual reality] is poised to take off well before [augmented reality]."

In the latest post on his work-related blog, "Ramblings in Valve Time," Abrash discusses the two possibilities of wearable computing—hardware that could be worn as simply as glasses. "Part 1" focuses on the pros of VR. Abrash notes that VR can stay in a fixed location and be tethered, as opposed to walking around with AR, and that it can be designed to run on a battery with a shorter life span. VR will also be able to use existing controllers in its early stages and is more approachable on the software side.

"AR is most likely going to change the way we interact with the world," Abrash said. "... However, it seems likely that VR is much closer to being deliverable in a truly workable form."

Abrash notes that AR glasses will be able to provide both the AR and VR experience. Before AR is fully functional, it "seems likely that VR-like experiences will be an important part of the ultimate AR future," said Abrash.

Abrash first introduced the wearable computing project on April 13th of this year. It is still under heavy development and research, with no solid plans for an actual release.

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