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Capstone Math Virtual Reality (VR) Project

One of the advanced technologies that has strong potential to alter how we work and play is now referred to as “Virtual Reality” (VR) and it’s close relative “Augmented Reality” (AR). Tim Cook, head of Apple, has said that he believes that AR will be bigger than the iPhone in the future.

NAPS is working to provide student insight into this technology with some basic instruction regarding 3D digital environments and experience in use of VR in the local area.

The base project will be to engage and support a group of college-bound students at Northumberland High School in the “Capstone Math Applications” class. In the past, we have built solar arrays, assessed windmills, flown drones, and even built an underwater robot under the auspices of the US Navy. This year’s project will be to generate Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) before-andafter versions of a small Virginia village under “Revitalization.”

What we call the “Callao Revitalization Project” is an Economic Development effort currently underway with Virginia state funding to renovate the village of Callao, VA. Ultimate shared project cost is expected to be several million dollars. This will involve development of such things as a group assembly amphitheater area, new front renovations of stores, murals on appropriate walls, new and attractive signage, and new faux brick crosswalks, arches and road reconstruction. Callao will be presented as the “Gateway to the county and Chesapeake Bay.”

Clearly, a VR/AR presentation (before and after), if possible within time and money constraints, would be extremely constructive toward both concept development and presentations. It’s a wonderful opportunity for demonstration of a tangible and important use of the technology above and beyond entertainment. This is an ambitious project! Even if only partial success is achieved, participation regarding VR visual concepts may help entice students into STEM areas. Student work will proceed on a non-interfering basis with the Callao Project.

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