Believe it or not, the first steps towards virtual reality (and the fun you are about to have now!) were taken in the 1800s. Virtual reality developed alongside photography. Fairly soon after traditional photography and filming was invented, the stereoscope came along. Stereoscopes used a mirror and two identical images arranged side-by-side. Looked at through a specific lens configuration, this made the images combine to make a 3D image. This may sound confusing, but almost every child has experienced the stereoscope in the form of the red plastic View-master, a camera-like device, into which a circular disc of pictures is placed. Looking into the eye-pieces, the child sees a wealth of images with good depth perception. This is a primitive, but still recognisable predecessor of today’s virtual reality.
From a porn point of view, early peep-shows (boxes containing short films, or a series of pictures which could be manipulated by the watcher) gave the illusion of an almost virtual reality type of three-dimensional immersion. The boxes tended to be decorated like rooms, and the pictures positioned in such a way that a scene would ‘play out’ for the enjoyment of the viewers.
However, virtual reality as a concept did not really exist (the name itself was only coined in the 1980s) and advances on this type of viewing tended to be towards 3D imagery – with those red and blue cardboard glasses that were needed to make the pictures pop.
In the 1980s and 1990s the idea of an immersive virtual reality experience emerged, thanks to the huge advances in computer technology (this began then, and still has not ended, with the advent of personal computing, mobile and wireless technology, and especially so with innovations in smartphone technology, both hardware and software). However, 1990s ideas about virtual reality were somewhat similar to early computers: big and bulky, requiring huge amounts of space, and not able to offer very realistic immersion in the VR world. This was the time of massive video games, in purpose-built arcades, and it was thought that virtual reality experiences would require the user to be wired into a frame which would hold them suspended, but able to move in any direction to mimic motion inside the game or video. The frame, needless to say, would take up a lot of space, so a virtual reality arcade would necessarily need to be massive: even then, this was an expensive proposition…
So the idea of personal use VR was put to bed for a while, not abandoned, but with less resources devoted to it, unknowing that the tech needed (teeny-tiny smartphones) was a mere twenty or thirty years away. With the advent of the modern smartphone, app-enabled, WiFi and mobile connected, virtual reality has been given a new lease of life. Recent innovations, led by the release of Oculus headsets and gloves, have meant that it is now possible to enter a virtual reality world at any time and from any place, from the comfort of your own home – or even from your bed!
As far as virtual reality porn goes, these new advances have been an enormous benefit – just as it used to be shameful to be seen leaving peep-shows and adult movie theatres, it would be embarrassing and off-putting to be seen entering or leaving arcades designed for sexual role play. Modern virtual reality technology means that we can enjoy all sorts of sexy movies and explore all manner of play, without the danger of being caught by someone who knows us.
Most smartphone users can access virtual reality quite cheaply, thanks to offerings like Google’s Cardboard, which is the lo-tech way to transform your phone into a viewing device. Equipment goes all the way to full body suits, covered with sensors that can make you feel as though you are actually in the world of the film, being touched and feeling it.
With such enormous advances in technology taking place year on year, month on month even, it is hard to predict where the future will take us. What does seem clear is that virtual reality is going to pop up everywhere: in classrooms, offices, retail establishments and, of course, in your private pleasures too!
Future devices may contain innovations that allow for full immersion in virtual reality movies, from all over touch, to taste and smell too. Sensors will only get better and more sensitive, and it is almost certain that watching virtual reality porn in a full body suit will become ever more realistic and even more of a satisfying delight.