XR Glossary

360-Degree Video Immersive videos or spherical videos where there is a view in every direction recorded at the same time using an omnidirectional camera. 
3D Animation Creating a sequence of poses with a 3D object that creates the illusion of life-like movement
3D Model (Asset) A 3D model is a digital representation of an object that has length, width, and depth.
5G The 5th generation technology standard for broadband cellular networks offering greater bandwidth and higher download speeds. 
Analytics Information metrics resulting from the analysis of events occuring in artificial reality 
Artificial Intelligence (AI)  Intelligence demonstrated by computers to adapt to human cognitive functions like problem solving and learning 
Augmented Reality (AR) Placing a digital image or a hologram in the user’s view of the real world through a digital device, for example a smartphone, tablet, or mixed reality headset like the Microsoft HoloLens.
Avatar A virtual representation of an individual that may have lifelike or animated features and that can convey a sense of one's identity.
CAD Computer-Aided Design: the use of specialized digital tools to aid in the creation, modification, or analysis of a design. 
Code and Programming Languages Code is a set of instructions written in a number of programming languages like Python, JavaScript, Java, and C# that are deplyed by a computer. The result of writing these instructions is a computer program, which can curate an immersive experience.
Code Snippet Code snippets are a representation of a pre-programmed set of code.  Ability to re-use Code snippets speeds up the development process. 
Configurator  The application of providing a perspective or optional dimension to an object or scene
Data Reference to the analysis of digital facts
Degrees of Freedom (DoF) How a user moves through virtual space in a headset. 3DoF allows moving the head to view in any direction.  6DoF allows up, down, left, right, forward, and backward movement, so the user can physically walk around and interact.
Digital Twin A replica of a physical object or place in digital form. 
Doppler Effect  An increase in the frequency of sound or light as its source approaches an observer or a decrease as it moves away. Creates a differential effect in pitch with sound waves.

Edge Computing  A distributed computing paradigm bringing computation and data storage closer to the location needed in order to decrease latency and increase security.
Embodiment  The feeling of being immersed in the virtual space through sensory feedback, interactivity, and spatial awareness. 
Extended Reality (XR)  All real and virtual environments and interactions generated by technology and wearables. An umbrella term for Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), and Mixed Reality (MR) collectively.
Eye Tracking Use of cameras and sensors in a headset to calculate where the user’s eyes are directly looking. Can enable gaze control by the user and allows the capture of user data.
Field of View (FOV) Refers to the angle, measured in degrees, within a user’s visual field of view in a headset.
Foveated Rendering  Eye tracking integrated with a virtual reality headset to reduce the rendering workload by reducing the image quality in the peripheral vision. The centrally located fovea in the human eye is where the focus is sharpest.
Game-based learning Learning experiences re-packaged as games to increase engagement with and retention of the content. Can promote critical or strategic thinking and be used to support students otherwise not engaged.
Gamification  The digitization of non-game applications into formats that use point scoring, paths of engagement, rules of play, and a reward system to encourage a specific response and enhance the sense of personal achievement.
Gaze Direct point of vision measured by XR headsets to allow hands-free interaction with the digital experience.
Geolocation Identification of the geographic location of a user or device. 
Gesture A non-verbal form of communication, usually movement of hands, face, or other parts of the body.
Global Agency  The ability of a user to interact with a virtual world or experience and have a significant impact on it.
Guardian System Boundaries in the real world set up digitally to guide users in moving safely inside an immersive virtual environment.
Hand Tracking Hand tracking captures the movement of a user's hands, allowing actual hand movements to replace controllers and allow the user to more naturally interact with 3D objects in an immersive world.  Hand movements may be tracked from the HMD, haptic gloves, or wearables.
Haptics and force feedback Vibrations and force feedback delivered via controllers, wearable gloves, or full -body haptic suits to simulate real-world touch and force, enhancing the realism of interactions. 
Head Mounted Display (HMD) A hardware unit — e.g., a VR headset — worn on the user's head that provides the vehicle to visualize and immerse in virtual software content.

Head Tracking Tracks the position of the user’s head in an HMD in order to orient the virtual environment to the user’s point of view.
Heat Maps  A data visualization tool that uses eye traking to show areas that are most interesting from the users point of view.
Hotspot  An interactive location to release more content or options in an immersive space.
Humanics  The human ability to understand the digital landscape and computational data and remain interactive and holistic in human communication.
Imaginality  The ability to have originality of ideas and ambitions and keep up with lateral thinking and unusual logic.
Immersion A psychological state of being in a virtual environment. 
Intelligent Agency (IA) An autonomous entity to act in, and influence, an artificial environment to direct and complete the goals set out. 
Internet of Things (IoT)  A system of related computing devices, software, objects, animals, or people with unique identifiers (UIDs) and the ability to transfer data through a network without requiring human to human or human to computer interaction. 
Interpupillary Distance (IPD) The distance between the pupils of both eyes. Some HMDs offer the option to adjust the IPD to improve vision.
Latency The delay between a user’s action and the technology’s reaction. Low latency is critical to a comfortable VR/AR experience.
Local Agency  The ability for a user to make small changes in a virtual environment or experience.
Locomotion The way in which a user moves through a virtual environment.
Low-Code / No-Code Development Allows you to develop interactive experiences with a visual, often drag-and-drop-based, approach. Code Snippets support this movement making it easier and faster to develop experiences.
Mesh A collection of polygons in 3D space forming a shape.
Metaverse The world you are in when you are in virtual and augmented reality, or the collective world of all combined virtual or augmented spaces.
Mixed Reality (MR)  Allows physical and digital objects to be persistent and to co-exist and interact in real time.  
Navigation The way in which you can move through a virtual environment. 
Non-Player Character (NPC) A character players do not have control over and whose actions are often based on predetermined, algorithmic, or responsive behavior.
Occlusion Hiding an object from view by the positioning of other objects in the user's line of sight.  

Performant The ability of an immersive experience to run at a high enough frame rate to not cause judder. There are many techniques used to optimize content to make it performant including reduction of the polygons in a 3D asset.
Photogrammetry  A process in which multiple photographs of a person, object, or place are stitched together to create a 3D digital twin.
Pixel In a digital image, the smallest physical point and element of a picture represented on a screen.
Polygons A plane figure defined by a number of straight lines to form a closed polyginal circuit. 3D objects are formed when polygons are rendered into a wireframe. 
Portal A location in a virtual space that allows the user to pass through into another 3-dimensional world.
Positional Tracking Mapping a user's movement in the physical world onto the virtual environment.May be limited by room size and cable length (if the headset is connected to a computer). Not all headsets allow positional tracking.
Presence When users naturally perceive the virtual system and fully sense that they are part of and in a physical environment.
QR (Quick Response) Codes A matrix barcode that contains digital information about an item, object, person, place, or location.  Activated by a smartphone camera, the code pulls up the linked information. 
Refresh Rate The speed, measured in frames per second (FPS) or hertz (Hz), at which images are displayed in a virtual environment. The accepted minimum refresh rate for a comfortable VR experience is 90 FPS.
Rendering Through a computer algorithm, the generation of 2D and 3D images processed to increase efficiency and performance at the highest standard possible. 
Shading Shading is the illusion of depth perception, which is achieved through the variation of color and texture of an object.
SLAM Simultaneous Localization And Mapping (SLAM) enables 6DoF by positioning the user relative to the environment. Where 3DoF allows you to only Pitch, Yaw, and Roll your head, SLAM adds Up/Down Left/Right and Back/Forth.
Spatial Audio 3D Audio effects built into the surround-sound environment of the experience.
Spatial Computing Human interaction with a computer in which the machine retains and manipulates responses to real objects and spaces. 
Technosphere The connectivity of the global network.
Teleportation Using a controller to transfer from one point to another without traveling the physical space between locations. 

Virtual Reality (VR) A simulation of a 3D environment viewed through a Head Mounted Display or HMD. With controllers, the user is able to interact with the virtual content.
Voxel A cubic volume pixel for quantizing three-dimensional space.
Volumetric Video Capture  A video technique capturing 3 dimensional space that may be viewed on 2D screens or in 3D through an HMD.
WebXR Immersive content accessed directly through the web browser without an app.
Wireframe A blueprint of the immersive experience that includes rendered 3D objects to visualize how the prototype will work.