I got my first headset when I was 15. I wasn’t the first at my school, but it was still pretty early, it all sort of came in phases. At first it was only the rich and powerful who used them; they did complicated transactions and required lots of data all at the same time.
Most people went without a set for the first couple of years because they were expensive and a luxury. However, as time passed, it became a necessity and soon people without headsets couldn’t get anything but manual labour jobs.
At some point they started using headsets in the schools. The idea was that it would help students learn more about the topics being taught. They could see relevant pictures and links, watch videos, and investigate every detail. There were apps that could record spoken essays to text and submit them to teachers for marking. People weren’t reading anymore, but there were a few people who kept at it. For the students that grew up with them, there wasn’t anything but them.
Mine wasn’t for school though, I got it earlier. It mostly had only video conferencing and some other basic stuff. True emersion came later, mostly in the advent of high-graphic games development. The original headsets were the biggest. They wanted to cut out the natural light and focus on close up video vision, but that ended up being over evolved as advanced lenses became more common.
The first sets were like glasses. They looped over your ears and projected an image onto a glass lens in front of your eyes. We would watch through the glasses and see our friends sitting around the room, but looking at the edges there wasn’t anyone else around.
Headsets were a result of the evolution of the cell phone. Everyone had one so data services become more efficient and carrying around a brick didn’t make sense anymore. Everyone wanted a continuous connection to their content; it put everything in life back into order. And it become hard for most people to to take off their headsets. For me, I made a habit of taking it off at night, I wanted to remember the real world.
Most of the stores in the mall now catered to digital devices. Food hadn’t been the same since it was primarily created and served by machines.
Technology had become so much more modern now that most people only needed small ear pieces. The projection was external but had something to do with string theory. Images would be spaced in the space just beyond. Everything was to scale and colour, but there was always a digital feel.
Things looked the same but never felt real and that was what things had become, a digital representations of what was supposed to be real.