Wagler leads VR demo at TedXYouth@Lincoln

Wagler leads VR demo at TedXYouth@Lincoln

Tuesday, September 5, 2017 - 11:00am
photo of Wagler
Wagler held a VR demo to help youth understand what VR is and how they can interact with and experience it firsthand.

by Molly Chapple

Adam Wagler, assistant professor of advertising and public relations at the CoJMC, recently held a virtual reality demo at the TedXYouth@Lincoln event. This year’s event was held on Saturday, Aug. 19 at Lincoln High School.

The event kicked off with a talk by Megan Elliott, the founding director of the Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts. Elliott spoke about emerging media and technology and urged students to become involved at an early age. Most of the technology and media-related jobs of the future haven’t even been invented yet, Elliott said.

The day continued with other speakers and breaks for youth to explore different areas of technology. In the library, Wagler held a VR demo to help youth understand what VR is and how they can interact with and experience it firsthand.

“VR is easy to talk about, but it’s even easier to understand if you experience it,” Wagler said.

Wagler said the future of immersive media and technology splits one of two ways: virtual reality and augmented reality. Virtual reality assists users in specific tasks and experiences and actually transports users to a different environment. Total immersion is currently being utilized in various ways, including training in the medical field and to help soldiers who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Augmented reality adds an interactive element, or layer, to the user’s environment. Examples of augmented reality include Snapchat lenses and Pokémon Go. Both create unique storytelling tools to communicate through virtual experiences.

Wagler said he hopes that the biggest takeaway for youth was to be able to envision themselves working in emerging media and technology fields, and that they can use the VR demo as a starting point for ideas.

“When youth hear ‘VR’ or ‘immersive media,’ I hope they remember this experience as a starting point,” he said. “I hope it’s something they can build ideas off of based on this short demo they got to experience.”

To learn more about immersive media and technology, come to Maker Hours in Andersen Hall, Room 27, on Friday afternoons. For more information, visit http://makerhours.org/.