Today marks the beginning of another themed week on Gamasutra – this time focusing on the advanced input/output systems of the future
. You can check out the dedicated page here
Many of the systems we'll be focusing on this week -- including virtual reality, augmented reality, biofeedback, voice and new kinds of controllers -- currently dwell in nascent, or perhaps even non-existent markets. Particularly as far as video games are concerned, these technologies are still in their infancies, even if prototypical versions of them have existed for years.
As these technologies are emerging, we won't pretend that we know if they'll eventually become commercially viable for the mainstream, or if they'll move beyond niche areas of academic research. But we're confident that all of this technology is pushing toward something bigger. The knowledge gathered from game developers' work with these systems will influence new generations of input and output systems until, eventually, the technologies find applications that make sense for a lot of people.
The primary application for VR, AR, biofeedback and the like might not even end up being video games. Even the smartest entrepreneurs, inventors and business people have the tendency to try to create a product for
a market that they think wants or needs it. In reality, it's not up to the inventors, but ultimately up to the market to decide if these new products are viable enough to support a business or industry such as video games.
So, video games might not even be the primary market for some of the advanced input/output devices that we highlight this week
. But in talking to people who are involved in making games for these cutting-edge systems, I'm reminded that whatever the final outcome might be, it's video game developers who are driving this tech forward, and pushing these devices to give better feedback, more precision, more immersiveness and more interaction. Whichever audiences these systems find, they'll have game developers to thank for helping make those systems better.
Thanks for reading,
Kris Graft (@krisgraft