The Sorenson Center for Discovery & Innovation at the David Eccles School of Business hosted a night of high tech simulation. Literally, it was all virtual.
The center’s third virtual reality showcase provided U of U students, faculty and staff the opportunity to become acquainted with this new and disruptive technology. A range of industry visionaries represented Utah’s robust virtual reality community at the event, an enthusiastic group interested in advancing both the technology and its applications.
Cosmic Pictures is a Salt Lake City production company that makes deeply engaging VR experiences, while Morph3D creates 3D avatars for virtual and augmented reality experiences and gaming. Marriott Library’s Assistant Head of Creative Spaces, T.J. Ferrill, was there to promote the library’s new VR checkout program, and to see the latest developments in the field.
“VR Night was a great opportunity for the campus libraries to connect with researchers, content creators, and local businesses who see great opportunity in this new technology,” Ferrill said.
VR Night kicked off with HackTheU founder, Johnny Le, promoting the University of Utah’s biggest hackathon. The Salt Lake City economic development agency, USTAR, shared information about their innovation programs and John Dean, founder of the Utah Digital Entertainment Network, talked about the potential VR technology has in various entertainment industries.
Utah’s virtual reality community is interested in building a skilled, prosperous and attractive VR market here in the state. Sorenson Center Manager and event organizer Cesar Sanchez understands the importance of facilitating the development of this community. Event attendees represented companies and entrepreneurs interested in VR technology and its applications, so VR Night provided a valuable networking opportunity.
Faculty and administrators from the Spencer S. Eccles Health Science Library recognize the value of promoting the use of VR technology in the health and wellness fields, and the Sorenson Center for Discovery & Innovation has acted as a catalyst for connecting Utah’s virtual reality developers with leaders in the University’s business and medical schools. Add to those Utah’s nationally-ranked schools the top-rated Engineering, Arts & Entertainment program, and the Sorenson Center’s executive director, Chris Wasden, believes that Utah is poised to be a leader in healthcare applications of VR technology.