A Swedish internet service provider, ume.net, has a message for potential customers: you wouldn't tolerate lag in real life, so why tolerate it online?
Slow internet is the worst. Waiting for a GIF to load on Reddit? Website loads without images? You can barely play your favorite MMORPG because a half-second lag makes it impossible to do anything?
Think that's annoying? Now just imagine if your entire life lagged like a crappy internet connection.
Ume.net got together four volunteers and hooked them up to the Oculus Rift, a 3D virtual reality headset, and set the camera on a delay. The volunteers then tried to do normal things like walk down the street, play ping pong, cook an omelette, go bowling, and work out at the gym.
The results are incredibly funny. Watch:
The lesson here is that our brains are easily trolled. And the Oculus Rift might just be the greatest brain-trolling device ever created.
Watch what happens, for example, when a guy decides to test out the Oculus Rift at a mall in Russia. His friend gives him a gentle shove just as the Oculus' virtual roller coaster begins its descent. Hell breaks loose.
This seems like an overreaction, but he might not be faking it. We humans rely on a a combination of visual and mechanical information to maintain balance. In experiments using a room with a fixed ground and moveable walls, a baby will fall down if the walls move. Adults are better at reconciling conflicting visual and mechanical information, so they won't fall under those conditions. But ask an adult to balance on a beam, and they, too, will lose balance when the walls move.
The brain is awesome.