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Education Transportation Technology

Virtual Reality Games Can Improve Memory Retention of Safety Instructions 36

vrml writes: Using a virtual reality (VR) headset to experience risky situations as immersive 3D games improves memory retention of passenger safety instructions, according to research published in the IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics, and illustrated by a YouTube video. Researchers recruited occasional flyers: half of them played a VR gaming experience of an airliner water landing and evacuation, while the other half studied a real airline safety card. After one week, passengers who had studied the safety card suffered a significant loss of knowledge, while passengers who had played the VR game fully retained the safety knowledge gained. The research group has now made available its emergency water landing experience also for the Oculus Rift.
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Virtual Reality Games Can Improve Memory Retention of Safety Instructions

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  • They need a study to say that a 3d video + sound experience is usually better than a plastic card?

    Also, color tv is usually better than black and white.

    Not to mention the fact that an Imax screen is better than a blackberry screen.

    • They need a study to say that a 3d video + sound experience is usually better than a plastic card?

      Yes. That's how science works. You can't get away with just saying "Oh, well, it's probably true," and use that as the basis for your paper.

  • Hmmm .... (Score:4, Informative)

    by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Wednesday April 22, 2015 @01:07PM (#49529861) Homepage

    Oddly enough, I know someone who works in this sector ... crash simulators for helicopters in the event they make a water landing.

    While this might be good for passengers to know more than the safety card ... you want to be sure your actual flight crew have had real training.

    Because when it's dark, chaotic, and water is everywhere you want to be damned sure the people responsible have done these steps under something resembling real circumstances, and not a frigging video game.

    So, if you work in the offshore oil industry, for instance, you MUST take this training. And your video game just isn't gonna cut it.

    • by bondsbw ( 888959 )

      While this might be good for passengers to know more than the safety card

      More generally, it leads us to investigate whether VR is consistently better than any type of literary teaching materials. If true, VR may be promising for situations where real-life training exercises are difficult or cost-prohibitive to implement.

  • A hangglider instructor once told me the exact opposite. He experimented with 3d simulators and abandoned them because after the use of the simulator, the pupils took twice as long to learn how to fly as the pupils who never used the simulator.
    • by Meshach ( 578918 )

      A hangglider instructor once told me the exact opposite. He experimented with 3d simulators and abandoned them because after the use of the simulator, the pupils took twice as long to learn how to fly as the pupils who never used the simulator.

      That sounds suspicious as they are used extensively by the airline industry [wikipedia.org].

      • by OzPeter ( 195038 )

        There are even places that rent out commercial grade simulators to the public.

      • A hangglider instructor once told me the exact opposite. He experimented with 3d simulators and abandoned them because after the use of the simulator, the pupils took twice as long to learn how to fly as the pupils who never used the simulator.

        That sounds suspicious as they are used extensively by the airline industry [wikipedia.org].

        Basic flying skills are taught hands on on real aircraft (eg: C-172), developing up to aircraft like Piper Seminole for multi-engine certification. Lots of time is spent flying these aircraft before ever being in the airline industry.

        Where Simulators are a big help in the airline industry, to experienced pilots that know how to fly a plane, is:
        -Cost: Operating an empty 737 or A330 for training purposes only would be prohibitively expensive. Simulators allow more crew to get training at lower cost.
        -Procedure

    • Re:Hanggliders (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Dutch Gun ( 899105 ) on Wednesday April 22, 2015 @01:32PM (#49530065)

      It's probably easier to simulate the practical environment and mechanics of an aircraft than a hang glider, in which you're directing the flight controls with your body instead of a mechanical flight stick or yoke. Unless you've got a virtual hang glider controller hooked up in a large virtual environment, I can see how it might not work so well. On the contrary, you can create a reasonable flight simulator experience with a PC and some reasonably inexpensive accessories.

      In nearly all other forms of flight, simulators are used extensively to good effect, so I'd be careful about generalizing the lessons learned by one hang-gliding instructor.

  • For years and years, pilots have used flight simulators to practice. This study confirms what was already known, given a real enough simulation, it is almost identical to practicing it in reality.
  • This always makes me laugh. There's no such thing as a "water landing" in a commercial airliner. It's a crash. At least that's what every commercial airline pilot I've spoken to says. But I guess that even saying the work "crash" during any announcement freaks some people out.
    • There was the pilot who pulled off the amazing landing in the Hudson [wikipedia.org] a few years ago. He was a rock star.

      But, yes, I used to know people who did aircraft maintenance ... and almost universally they sneered at the notion of a "water landing". The floating seat cushions were affectionately referred to as "crash debris locators".

      I think more of Swissair 111 [wikipedia.org] when I think "water landing". As a general rule, it's not considered something you'd want to be around for.

      • Indeed that was pretty amazing. But he ditched the aircraft. Even the citation for the award in the excerpt below from your link states as such.

        The entire crew of Flight 1549 was awarded the Master's Medal of the Guild of Air Pilots and Air Navigators. The award citation read, "This emergency ditching and evacuation, with the loss of no lives, is a heroic and unique aviation achievement.

        • At the end of the day, he successfully put a plane down on the water, and nobody died.

          We can bitch about the semantics of "landing" vs "ditching" ... I'm simply going with "successfully transitioned from flying to not flying on a body of water and didn't kill anybody".

          That's far closer to "water landing" than anything else I've ever heard of.

          Everything else is pretty much a spectacular failure.

      • There was the pilot who pulled off the amazing landing in the Hudson [wikipedia.org] a few years ago. He was a rock star.

        But, yes, I used to know people who did aircraft maintenance ... and almost universally they sneered at the notion of a "water landing". The floating seat cushions were affectionately referred to as "crash debris locators".

        I think more of Swissair 111 [wikipedia.org] when I think "water landing". As a general rule, it's not considered something you'd want to be around for.

        1549 was an intentional, controlled (the flight control surfaces worked) landing on the water.

        Swissair hit the water uncontrolled, far faster than a reasonable landing speed.

    • by PPH ( 736903 )

      There have been a number of aircraft ditching incidents [wikipedia.org] that were more or less survivable. That's what I think of in terms of water landings. Where the aircraft enters the water in an uncontrolled manner, a crash is a crash. Hitting water is pretty much like hitting concrete.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Or maybe doing something odd or different sticks with you.

    Like if your stewardess is a hairy naked guy giving the instructions . . . or if they make you sing the instructions.

    • On my last flight, a male flight attendant amused the passengers by lip syncing the entire pre-recorded message (which was voiced by a female) while making just-slightly-over-exaggerated facial expressions. It was low key humor but still entertaining. It also made me realize that however sick the passengers were of hearing the safety routine, these poor flight attendants had heard it so many times they could recite the entire recording by heart.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    "The safety lecture continues... the next thing they do, they tell you to locate your nearest emergency exit... I do this immediately! I locate my nearest emergency exit and then I plan my route.

    "You have to plan your route; it’s not always a straight line is it? Sometimes, there’s a REALLY BIG FAT FUCK SITTING RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOU!!! Well, you know you’ll never get over him! I look around for women and children, midgets and dwarves, cripples, war widows, paralyzed veterans, people with b

  • At least in the summary. So a 3D video game is better than a plastic card. Which nobody ever looks at. How about useful comparisons, like comparing to a prerecorded video demonstration and to flight attendants doing a live safety demonstration in the cabin.

    • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

      It is old knowledge. The more areas of you brain that you use to learn a lesson, the more you will retain from that lesson. So not just reading the card but reading it out loud because by vocalising it you are using another area of the brain (some thing works when you talk to yourself, you are not nuts, you are just vocalising thoughts for personal emphasis). Again don't just read the card, write down a copy of the instructions (the teacher preferred method for recalcitrant students, write down the instruc

    • It really just depends on the learner and the situation. When I was getting my scuba certification I remember having all sorts of trouble taking my mask off underwater in the pool (I have an almost involuntary reaction to water being on/around my eyes). I practiced it like crazy in the pool, but it was a real challenge to the point I wasn't sure I'd be able to pull it off at 40 feet in the ocean for the open water dives.

      What finally did it for me was laying in bed visualizing myself removing my mask, and
  • When Virtual Happy Fun Ball suddenly accelerated toward my virtual child under 10 and my pregnant virtual wife, I nearly soiled myself. Fortunately, the virtual child absorbed most of the blow, otherwise the collision with my virtual would've caused a virtual miscarriage for sure. It's reaction with virtual concrete was, while beautiful, ultimately tragic, and led to Virtual Happy Fun Ball emitting large quantities of smoke from its exposed core. Mesmerized as I was by the display, I did not heed the war

  • This could be an area worthy of study. Losing a few virtual appendages before uncrating that new table saw might be a lesson well learned.

  • the basic safety instruction of locking up your unloaded guns? Games or not, this is apparently not possible in Murka. I suppose that memory retention is impossible when there is a dearth of brain cells.

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