Immersive visualization at KSU has ‘limitless’ application to public, private industry

I-VE is a 210-degree screen designed to immerse viewers into a separate world.
Published: Sep. 12, 2023 at 11:05 PM EDT
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KENNESAW, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - It’s possible the future lives in a room inside a Kennesaw State University research building.

“Hello, my name is I-VE,” the voice said. “I’m the Immersive Visualization Environment at Kennesaw State University.”

Her creator is Coles College of Business Information Systems professor Dr. Max North.

“I am the pioneer of virtual reality therapy,” he said.

Dr. North has spent years working to help people overcome phobias via virtual reality. But he often encountered a problem with traditional VR headsets, which can be clunky and uncomfortable.

“They would really feel nauseated, and after about 10 minutes, we’d have to take it off,” North said.

He pondered a change. What if you could create an environment around the patient?

“This was my solution,” he said.

To immerse someone via a screen, you’d need big. And I-VE (eye-VEE) is big, enveloping the viewer in a 210-degree screen.

“I am a curved display surface with eight feet in height and 10 feet in diameter,” I-VE said.

I-VE research assistant and KSU student Elliot Larez has worked with I-VE since she was put together in this location. As is often the case with science, the research quickly expanded to other government and professional fields.

“We can do anything here,” Larez said. “Most of the uses people give to this kind of system is training.”

But it’s still used to help people, especially when coupled with a device that measures brainwaves.

“We can detect levels of stress, excitement, or engagement with the content,” Larez said.

And that makes I-VE quite popular, from amusement to therapy to places where you don’t need roads.

“The limit is basically human imagination,” North said.