The team at Tripp is planning to make the process of changing consciousness more controllable, providing users with specific virtual reality tools so that they can calm down, abstract, quickly fall asleep or start meditating, reports Venture Beat.
Startup Tripp, located in Los Angeles and San Francisco, is creating its own VR-game, which can change a person's mood and help him tune into a happier and harmonious way. This project, which developers call the "transformation experience", will be a combination of audio and visual elements, game mechanics, targeted interactivity, and meditation.
Now Tripp is at the earliest stage of development, so the team so far has nothing to show a wide audience. Nevertheless, they have already received $4 million from the Mayfield Foundation for further development. Mayfield Foundation’s managing director Tim Chang said he was incredibly interested in the opportunity to "crack the brain," and chose this start-up from 85 other applicants for funding.
“It’s the recreational drug without the drug,” Chang said. “A lot of this was inspired by themes in books like” Nexus, Ramez Naam’s sci-fi trilogy about a mind-expanding drug. In the novel, the characters hack their own perception and give themselves a kind of superhuman shared consciousness. But Tripp isn’t purely science fiction.
“VR should be good for this because there is a lot of basis for this in research,” Chang said.
The creators of virtual reality rely on studies that show how digital and interactive activities affect the human brain. The state of our consciousness changes when we listen to music, play computer games, scroll through the news feed in social networks, or watch our favorite TV shows. Tripp wants to make the process of changing consciousness more controllable, giving us specific tools of virtual reality so that we can, at our desire, to calm down, abstract, quickly fall asleep or begin to meditate.
According to CEO Tripp Nani Reeves, this will be a "virtual journey" that includes sensory and immersive elements of virtual reality. “We are creating a native VR experience that changes the way a person feels,” said Reeves. “You can use Tripp to select from a catalog of different feelings, like pumping you up before a workout or calming you down after work.”
In this case, the degree of immersion in virtual space will be virtually indistinguishable from reality. The company will use neural networks to offer the most personalized "travel" to each user. Currently, the team at Tripp consists of half a dozen employees, and in the next several months, they are planning to hire ten more people. In addition, Tripp will cooperate with third-party studios.
In the meantime, the company OnComfort already uses virtual reality to improve the psychological state of patients who were diagnosed with cancer. They developed five virtual reality programs for the patients. One of the procedures called Aqua creates a feeling of immersion in the water and allows you to ease the pain and remove anxiety. The KIMO video game offers the patient a possibility to experience a virtual fight with cancer cells during his or her passage of chemotherapy. As for children, the Stella VR program is created, which helps to distract during short unpleasant procedures - for example, when installing a dropper or taking blood for analysis.
What do you think of the use of this type of virtual reality technology?