Why I Joined A VR Studio
Last year, for four weeks at a time, I sat in the hospital. My now wife April visited me every extra second she had, and without that I would have literally fallen apart.
She wasn’t the only one that visited me. All of my friends and family members went out of their way to make it to UCSF while I sat there being attacked by poisonous routines of chemotherapy. In a word, it sucked. Bad. Really bad. Really horribly bad.
I was one of the more tech savvy folks on the floor. OK, maybe the most. I had a PS4, a laptop, an iPhone, a tablet, and all of the media one could want when stuck on a desert island. Thank goodness there was Wifi.
With all of that…I still felt alone. Frighteningly so. I strolled to the community room on my floor daily to look out of the windows. It was a gorgeous view, but after my first two weeks I realized that I had not heard an outside sound since I was admitted. No birds. No people talking. No cars. No whoosh of the wind. Nada. Zip. Zero. It was scary. Toss in the fact that I couldn’t hang out with my dogs and cats, and I was at the brink of wanting to hop on the elevator and say screw the doctors on my way out to the world outside.
While chatting with someone very special to me on Facebook Messenger, I had a simple ask when we talked about how I felt. “Get me out of this fucking hospital room.” The response was a gift. A Gear VR and a Samsung Note 4.
Virtual reality, not a new medium to me, or anyone else, had me hooked. I had the context. I had the problem that needed solving. Immediately, I took a calming stroll on Eden River. Check out the video below for a taste.
I. Was. Not. In. My. Hospital. Room.
I took the Gear VR off and said to myself “Holy shit, this is it. This is what I want to surround myself with for the foreseeable future. I went back to TechCrunch after I got the all clear health-wise and immediately immersed myself in the space.
And then I met the folks from Rothenberg Ventures.
And now I’m at their sister company River Studios.
I’m healthy, happy, and have a wonderful new team and medium to play with. We’re storytellers, and if you know me, I have plenty of stories to tell.
It’s going to be a fun ride.