creative juice

for reals? part 2

Augmented/Mixed Reality vs. Virtual Reality, Part 2

By guest blogger Todd Schultz

In my last post about Augmented/Mixed Reality vs. Virtual Reality, I discussed the difference between the two kinds of VR, and then talked more in depth about the augmented kind. I’ll rehash so you don’t get lost, and then I’ll talk about Virtual Reality of the straight-up kind.

Here’s the difference between the two types of VR:

Augmented reality is taking something that is already there and making it better. See Part 1 to learn more about this type of VR.

Virtual reality is a full overhaul of reality. It’s an artificial, computer-generated simulation of an environment or situation. The user is immersed in this virtual reality and experiences it firsthand by stimulating their vision and hearing. It’s creating a completely different reality than one that exists.

Here are some examples of great Virtual Reality:

Google Earth

Get to know your planet—VR style. Google has just updated Google Earth with a beautiful new interface and magazine-style content to go with the killer visuals of our home planet. They’ve got Editor’s Picks, Travel, Nature, Culture and History.

One of these features is called “Land Art from Above.” You can check out these amazing pieces of art where the artists chose the earth as their canvas. They’re massive in scale and so cool!

Another one of my favorites is “Ultradistancia Renderings.” Frederico Winer, an Argentinian artist does some wicked cool stuff with satellite images. Stunning and colorful!

This is the kind of app that you can waste many hours on, but still feel good about it since you’re learning!


Within is an app for the iPhone or Android which serves up quality documentaries, movies, TV shows, and the like—all done in virtual reality. You can spend all day Saturday sitting on the couch, binging on movies… but you’re not just watching them, now you’re in the thing looking around. You could really lose yourself in the immersive environment!

Currently, VR is so much fun to tinker with. But it will be really interesting to see how both types of VR will be used in the future.


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