Thought Experiment for VR education app

This article describes a though experiment which is part of my Udacity VR course. I think this kind of experiment is important because there are no kill app for VR. I played around a few games on the daydream. They are good and I can feel potential but not actually significant enough for non tech people to purchase. Someone has to come up with a killer app.

The Application

Education App for non-tech person to learn network system.

I used to teach networking system like router and firewalls to people with no technical background. Start from ping command to how routing works and things like that. So why not thinking about create VR app for that. Users can learn basic network command and how to set up network system with routers.

Persona

Gro works for small retail shop as a part-timer. He want to a full time job. What if he can acquire skill for network engineer. He could be hired as engineer….

Age: 26 years old 
Occupation: Part-timer as at a retail shop
Name: Gro
Quote: “I want a full-time job!”
Motivations: Since Gro is a high school graduate and he doesn’t have any special skill, it’s not easy for him to get full-time job. Learning network system and becoming a network engineer is one of ways to get full time job.
VR Experience: Beginner

Questions

How accessible would each VR platform be to your target student in terms of price? Take into account location, age, and income.

Maybe any kinds of VR devices which including Oculous and HTC Vice is accessible to my audience. But people buy VR devices just for education apps? Less likely…

How interactive does your lesson need to be? For example, do I need to pick things up or could I get away with just looking at objects?

He need interaction to learn how to use network devices. Just watching video is absolutely not enough. He may need even a keyboard to learn network command. But this require out-of-box idea to achieve. AR may be better option than VR…

How realistic do your visuals need to be in order to teach? For example, could I use 2D images and videos in a 3D Environment or do you need high poly 3D models.

This is a difficult question to answer. 2D may be good enough but 2D video’s problem is less pressure for students. Since Gro is not a developer and learning technical skill is kind of boring for non techies, our application need to have enough pressure to keep our students focused. For that purpose, 3D environment and VR immersiveness should be helpful.

Does my student need to feel like a participant in the experience or can they be a passive viewer? Could they be both?

Learning something needs interaction.

Given the answers above, what are potential platforms you could use for your experience?

Even though he is not a developer, he likes new gadgets and technologies. Since he has to use VR headset at least for an hour to learn skills, Cardboard is not appropriate. On the other hand even though Oculous and HTC Vive is good and he may afford them, Oculous and Vice are for game lovers. He is not game lovers. So best choice should be the daydream or the gear VR. He may have a phone which is compatible for the daydream by chance because many phones which are going to be released in 2017 will be compatible for the daydream or the gear VR.

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