Updated: Aug 10, 2021
See the original article here: https://hypepotamus.com/feature/georgia-vr/
One Create-X startup is taking a “zen” approach while entering the fast-moving VR space.
Matthew Golino earned both his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Georgia Tech, and worked previously as a software engineer for General Motors. During this classwork in the HCI program, he tells Hypepotamus that his interest in “VR as an emerging medium converged” with his experience in meditation.
Meditation, he says, became a more central part of his life during his graduate work. Throughout the course of his thesis, Golino conducted research with expert and novice meditators alike on a quest to better understand how the practice of meditation is both taught and learned.
The result was eight meditation lessons taught completely through VR, aptly named ZenVR.
15 Georgia Tech students used the VR technology and educational modules during the prototyping phase.
“We had participants come in twice a week for 20 to 30 minute long meditation classes in VR. And by the end of the 6-week study, we were seeing these statistically significant increases in a number of mental health metrics. A lot of master’s projects kind of end there…but given my personal interest, it was my belief that this could make an impact.
After transforming the academic project into a startup with the help of the Create-X program, the ZenVR team has spent the last year turning their prototype into a full-fledged VR app. They have since been accepted into the Oculus Start Program, launched and trialed a beta version of their app with hundreds of users, and iterated on the virtual environment and overall usability. Most recently, the team received official approval from Oculus to launch their app on the Oculus Quest Store! ZenVR can now be downloaded here for the Oculus Quest VR headset.
A Look inside ZenVR's virtual environment