Virtual Reality… Still A Waste Of Time?

vrAccording to novelist and multimedia developer Douglas Adams, there is no such thing as virtual reality. Or, to put it another way, everything we perceive is virtual reality.

The world is composed of an infinite number of spectra, frequencies and textures. The human body perceives some of these and simply ignores the others.

Computer-generated sensation is no different from sensations created by night binoculars, a hearing aid or even a pair of glasses. Each is a virtual reality.

However, computer-generated sensation lets users create entirely new worlds, rather than simply providing different ways to perceive the real one.

Types of virtual reality

According to the new book “Virtual Reality — Through the New Looking Glass,” by Ken Pimentel and Kevin Teixeira, there are three types of computer-generated reality: total immersion, augmented reality and projected reality.

Total immersion, which attempts to bring the user …

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SystemPro Set The Stage For Massive Server Growth

cccThree years after Compaq Computer Corp. promised its Systempro server would drive a stake through the heart of the minicomputer business, company officials believe they finally have the hammer poised to strike the blow.

Compaq officials, speaking here at the company’s headquarters, said that in 1993 they will have the right mix of hardware, software and support to broaden the acceptance of their super server line. When combined with previous years’ sales, they said, Systempro revenue will surpass $1 billion in 1993. And that doesn’t include sales from Compaq’s entry-level version of the Systempro, the ProSignia.

“When we look out at all the capabilities of our products combined with the [forthcoming] software … it’s a major spike into minicomputers,” said Rod Schrock, director of systems product marketing.

Indeed, some customers are sold on Compaq’s super servers as a replacement for minis.

“It’s a no-brainer,” …

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LANDesk Manager Broke Serious Ground

ldmIntel Corp.’s forthcoming LANDesk Manager 1.0 may not have the most complete set of LAN-management tools available, but it does provide the infrastructure for the next generation of integrated management systems.

Intel is a member of the consortium defining the Desktop Management Interface (DMI) specification and has designed LANDesk’s architecture to reflect the forthcoming standard. A single 10K-byte terminate-and-stay-resident program on each of the target workstations functions as the all-purpose agent for the central management console, gathering information for LANDesk’s various management components (see graphic, Page 13).

LANDesk will migrate to the DMI API (application programming interface) specification, which will permit other DMI-compliant applications to exchange data with LANDesk, when the DMI spec is released later this year.

With the first release of this Windows-based tool, to be shipped this month, Intel appears to be further along than its competition in providing management tools …

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