VRulez is a groundbreaking virtual reality arcade and training facility that's located in downtown Toronto.
Although VRulez is a great place to test out the latest in VR gaming and gear, interact with friends and colleagues, and have fun, it also offers custom training material. Its training material is ideal for trainees who need to gain hands-on experience in a new role, but either don't have access to, or are not able to train on-site.
For many roles, hands-on training is limited due to hazardous working environments, which are only accessible to trained personnel. With VRrulez's state of the art technology, trainees are able to experience the workplace in a safe environment, allowing them to quickly grasp the training material, and show employers how they might handle specific scenarios related to the job.
To gain a deeper understanding of VRulez' demonstration facility and who it benefits, we spoke with Founder Harley Ho.
How is VRulez's development team able to provide training in special conditions while maintaining an immersive environment?
Virtual Reality training can simulate special environments and conditions where one would not normally experience. This is a great method to provide training for those one-odd experiences. However, as there are many possible scenarios and outcomes to these one-odd experiences, we understand Virtual Reality is not yet sufficient enough to recreate every one of them.
Therefore, instead of recreating an one-odd experience, VRulez is determined to provide a training environment for hazardous working conditions for routine work and first-time access entries, such as a biotechnology laboratories, nuclear power plant training, or hazardous waste material management facilities, prior to granting the operator access to such hazardous environments.
This form of training can replace the traditional SOP, where it can be difficult to acquire knowledge just from reading and testing knowledge with a simple quiz. Virtual reality can be interactive and immersive, and provides an environment that resembles real life situations. This can aid in the understanding of the special rules, and provide quizzes to test the ability to apply these guidelines to real life scenarios.
How does VRulez's VR experiences differ from those of its competitors?
VRulez is a local distributor for the world-famous Kat walk system. Besides running a virtual reality arcade and planning to open multiple locations across Canada with the Kat walk system, we also want to create and provide an application that can be useful for professional training. The Kat walk system is capable of harnessing a person onto a treadmill and prevents the user from walking into obstacles. Similarly to the film 'Ready-Player-One,' the user can walk on top of the treadmill immersed in the virtual environment, as if they are walking in the actual world. We also believe this system can help resolve the catch-22 scenario for the training world, where training would require access to a hazardous environment, while without proper training, the employee should not be allowed entry to such conditions.
What can you tell us about VRulez's custom experiences? Who do these appeal to in particular?
VRulez’s experience is unique because of the walking platform, not only is it more immersive compared to playing VR at home, we are capable of providing an application that can gear towards your specific desired environment. With the recent influx of various sensor devices, we can create software that you can feel to the tip of your fingers. Our uniqueness leads us to engage with partners that are particularly concerned about the health and safety of the operator.
How are hazardous environments simulated for training purposes? Does VRulez have training material readily available for specific jobs already?
The specific training provided to your operator will be a step by step procedure to help your operators gain knowledge into the area. The operators will usually start with a general knowledge introduction before entering the hazardous environment, followed with a gowning procedure to suit up with animated objects, demonstrating every movement step-by-step. The same goes for the work they need to do upon entering the airlock area. Each work task will be tailormade and if multiple operators are needed in order to finish the job, the system will also allow co-training with another human trainee, or multiple bots can be added to fulfill the job.
Why is VR so important when it comes to training employees in specific procedures and safety?
Virtual Reality is very important when it comes to providing training to employees, and not only because it can provide access to knowledge without going through a pile of papers or PDFs that operators detest. It also provides trainees with an opportunity to get remotely trained, while still feeling like they're training on-site. With our Kat walk system, we are capable of achieving one step further, so an operator can receive training without having to worry about walking into obstacles and getting hurt while they're blindfolded by the headset.
Image Credit: Facebook @VRulezToronto