You say you cover VR, but there's an awful lot of fantasy stuff here
It seems we need another definition of what VWN does.
Our focus is, as it has always been: Pushing forward alternative realities. Call it what you will; synthetic reality, artificial reality, virtual reality, they are in essence, all the same thing: an alternate reality.
To do this properly, much more is involved than just pushing for the core technology involved. A great many seemingly innocent fields add to the whole. Technologically we have Wi-Fi, Wi MAX, quantum computing, optical routers, multi-dimensional cameras, holoprojectors - all immensely useful technology, as are head mounted displays, and augmented reality hardware, and of course, direct wetware-hardware interfacing, the mind in the machine.
Yet it all this hardware, is still not enough. The technology is coming, but it will lay the path for the virtual, not create it. To look at creating it, we need to ask why do people seek the virtual? What does it offer us that the physical does not?
One of the greatest draws of the virtual is its value to science. Psychological studies, simulated ecosystems. The most powerful supercomputer on the planet at the time of writing is Japan's Earth Simulator - a massive simulation, used to predict the world's weater weeks in advance.
Computers are running simulations of diseases such as the spread of cancer, type 2 diabetes is modelled on one machine, to try to develop cures. Alife studies run complete ecosystems, and pain-preventing immersion replaces drugs.
Eventually, virtual reality will provide artificial bodies to those whose bodies don't work any more, or never functioned in the first place.
Greater Business Freedom
Virtual realities have the potential to revolutionise business. Tele-immersion could potentially do away with long haul business flights, whilst virtual offices and tele-working deal with the cost ofoffice space in a final way. Tactile manipulation of products from the desktop is a fair way off, but could revolutionise shopping, and entertainment worlds are fast replacing TV.
This is perhaps the most pervasive reason for VR. The desire to escape this hell-hole we call planet earth.
For a very many people, some trapped in dead-end marriages, those with little, or no possibility of social lives, those with malfunctional bodies, or social stigma issues, life on this planet is often a walking nightmare. This is part of why the addiction of the MMOs is often popular - people looking for a way out.
Current virtual worlds don't offer enough - the life is not sustainable, and people get bored fairly quickly anyhow, due to the clicheeness, and fairly blatant commercialism of so many.
Those who go into VR looking for true escape are soon disheartened, and some do seek to find another way to escape their torment - a more permanant one.
Immersion into synthetic realities at this point, is just not possible, and we do not advocate this. However, one day, and sooner than many think thanks to accelerating intelligence and the convergence of support technology, it will be possible to immerse in synthetic, or augmented reality, and wave the original, primitive physical world bye bye for good.
Thanks to much modern technology, and technological progress, the job fronts are finally starting to shrink - lower tech jobs are being automated out of existence, and the trend will spread.
What will people do then?
A way to live productive, satisfying lives must be found, with these trends together - disparagement, joblessness, and living nightmares, we will need alternate realities where life really is desirable, immersive, interactive, totally absorbing, and sustaining environments are one way, augmented reality environments are the other. Both will coexist together, and likely interchangably, within a few decades at most.
We need settings for these new lives, worlds where their presence can really make a difference.
This is why VWN covers fantasy and fantasy style resources. Tabletop Roleplay, GURP, and LARP have been doing this on a small scale, feeding the imaginations of millions of participants with their fantasised realities for decades. These are the type of resources we need to create truly immersive, dynamic realities where the spiralling of the physical world - of meatspace as it sometimes known - can be left behind, where quality of life can be restored, and real, meaningful connections can be made.