June 17, 2019

It's Ironic 2

Educational VR: The Irony of it All

The stout and trendy presence of virtual reality these days leaves me with a hefty sense of irony. (Please look at last week's post for the intorduction to this series.) I am struck by the incongruity of the past and the future colliding in an uncomfortable way. I am describing something we’ve seen before—when we were pushing for 3D visualization tools in the classroom from 2010 through 2015. Virtual reality is all the rage today, but in the past, things didn’t look quite so bright. Though the technologies are really quite similar, something has changed. Here's my second effort at ironic sentiment: 

Complaint: 3D costs too much. 

Educator response to 3D (5 years ago): “We can’t afford this.” “How do you expect teachers to buy this for each classroom?” “This just isn’t sustainable, sorry.”

Educator response to VR (today), even though VR costs much more, per student: “Wow, this is so sexy!” “Where can I get more?” "I'll find a way."

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