Ralph Rivera is the Director of BBC Digital. He is responsible for the development of BBC’s interactive services BBC Online and BBC Red Button. His division, the Future Media division, brings technology and design teams together to help BBC’s editorial teams create products like BBC News Online and BBC iPlayer.

Prior to BBC, Ralph worked at Major League Gaming in New York, where he was responsible for product development for the largest professional video game league in the world. Before that, he ran AOL’s Games and Latino businesses, oversaw the expansion of AOL’s international web presence and launched the social gaming platform games.com. Before his time at AOL, Rivera worked for publishing company Pearson Education, Simon & Schuster, Deloitte & Touche, and IBM.

3D Virtual Reality

In his Big Think video “3D Virtual Reality Is the Best Storytelling Technology We Have Ever Had,” Rivera discusses 3D virtual reality and how he feels it provides an opportunity to live stories the way we live life.

Ralph begins by discussing the change digital media has undergone over time from just simply becoming digital to becoming connected.

“The first wave of digital is going by where people have essentially been focused on digitizing what they already had,” says Ralph. “So you have newspapers online and radio online and TV online. And a lot of people first thought well, that’s it. And now they realize that’s just the first part.”

“…Now it means starting to do things online that you otherwise would not be able to do offline,” continues Ralph. “The ones that are the incumbents in the offline world are just starting to discover that that’s just the first part of being online is being digital. And now we’re getting into the piece where it’s about being connected.”

He says 360 immersive video experience allows users to get more connected because it provides enhanced visceral feeling.

Ralph refers to “being able to get 360 sound so that when you turn your head you hear things in a different way.” “Sound is much richer, and has much more information packed in it, which gives you more context for the story, right,” says Ralph. “And so being able to immerse yourself adds more texture, more richness to that experience.”

Ralph says virtual reality, 360 video may take time to catch on.  But, he is excited for the changes it will bring to digital media.

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