Touching On New Jobs in Haptics and Virtual Reality

As a VR/AR entrepreneur and student of the space (btw — we’re all students, even the people regarded as experts) I’ve been pondering emerging and yet to be defined professions. What are the types of jobs my two young children might do when they get a little taller? What’s happening now and what types of jobs might I be hiring for in the next three, five, or ten years? In my head this will fall into two general categories, existing jobs repurposed for VR and entirely new fields. The possibilities are endless and exciting!

A year ago there was no such thing as a ‘Director of VR Experiences’, but as of this writing the position is posted on the Oculus Careers page. In this example the job function, software development director, has been around for a while, but the title and application of talents is new. So, what is an example of a job that is about to exist?

At Thundership we love to share ideas with as many people and companies working in the space as possible, including hardware, software, content, etc. The common thread is passion and a commitment to collectively move forward because it is in all of our best interest to succeed. In this vein I spoke with a fascinating company this week that is developing a body suit that provides haptic feedback. Haptics simply means giving the sensation of touch, which can be achieved by applying forces, vibrations, motions, heat or cold, etc. There are a number of use cases for this technology, such as themed entertainment, training, therapies, and enhanced content. As we talked the dots in my head connected to form a picture and I thought about my neighbor who is one of the top sound editors in Hollywood. She tells stories through sound. In the near future there will be an equivalent version of artist who tells stories through sensation. I’m calling it a Haptic Artist. My prediction is that the Haptic Artist will be a…

- standard line item in budgets for games and filmed entertainment (framed and VR)

- major at universities

- category at the Academy Awards

- in-demand talent that is difficult to replicate using artificial intelligence (AI)

- impetus for standard digital tools to record and develop haptic sensations along the lines of Avid, Premiere, Pro tools, Maya, etc.

- master of a to be defined nomenclature and intensity scale

- counterpart to Haptic Critics!

So to all of the sensory seeking individuals out there, hang tight! The job of your dreams is right around the corner and it’s going to be sensational. Can you feel it?