Virtual reality and augmented reality is projected to become a $40 billion to $120 billion industry by the year 2020, according to the Idaho Virtual Reality Council. The Boise Library, through fundraising and donations, is now able to prepare Idahoans for this emerging industry. Every library in Boise is now outfitted with their very own virtual reality system.
People can reserve times and days throughout the week or drop-in on Wednesday for the library's VR Wednesday. Today was the first day the public got to try out the library's newest resource, and for 7th grader Thomas Michael Witt, it didn't disappoint.
"This sure beats just using a plain controller and looking at a TV. You actually feel like you’re in it," Thomas said.
Some who tried it even felt it could be used in a variety of different ways.
"I could see how it would be like really good educational tool. Where professors could better explain what they're talking about. It could be something as simple as a molecule," Christopher Parsons said.
It could change the lives of how we learn and even teach, that’s one of the main reasons those at the Boise Library wanted to give people access to it.
"Gives them access to something that inspires them. Offers them a chance to learn. Gives them opportunities," Boise Library manager Heidi Lewis said.
Lewis added it's a new tool that can provide endless opportunities.
"When libraries started back in the day, books were rare things and they were expensive things, and most people didn't have access to them or couldn't afford them, and so are getting this virtual reality as our newest technology fits perfectly in line with that tradition," Lewis said.
You can sign-up or make an appointment on the Boise Library's website.