Presence is the illusion of non-mediation. Presence is what leads to the feeling of being immersed in a virtual environment and the reason that virtual reality (VR) feels real. You can find here a 2015 meta-analysis of what elements of VR hardware and software lead to high levels immersion.
The concept that VR feels real and therefore can have real-world consequences is the foundation for a majority of our research for the better part of the last two decades.
Over the years we have hosted thousands of lab tours that consist of demos that illustrate key findings from well over a hundred academic papers from our lab. These tours are for members of the general public, Stanford affiliates, and world and industry leaders.
As VR has increasingly become a consumer product, we are no longer limited to hosting tours in our physical lab. Now we are creating Virtual Becomes Reality, a self-contained version of the lab tour that highlights, in an immersive and interactive way, why VR is powerful and what we know about it from a research perspective.
Virtual Becomes Reality is an official selection of the 2020 Tribeca Film Festival and premiered in June 2020 as part of the Cannes XR festival. It will also eventually be released online for free.