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Virtual reality helping your reality

Courtesy: MGN Online

The internet changed the way we do just about everything.

The next big thing could now be on the horizon, and there's a company in Columbia, Missouri that's bringing it directly to you.

It can take you anywhere in the world at anytime, as long as you have an internet connection.

"The internet is no longer flat, it's becoming a place you step into," says Sarah Hill, the Chief Storyteller with Story Up.

Story Up VR is a new company in Columbia, Missouri that uses 360-degree-journalism to immerse you into a story. Story Up has a big emphasis on positive, inspirational, and motivational content.

"Once they put it on and once they experience it...because you can't really tell them about it. You can't put it on a webpage or put it on a 2-D screen and you should get this," says Joe Chee, with Story Up.

Story Up has used a psychologist and EEG machines to measure people's responses to their VR content. They have discovered that immersive, meditation type video can help quiet fast areas of the brain.

"And so that's valuable to people who are going through a stressful situation, but also perhaps they are looking for an alternative to a depression or anxiety drug," says Hill.

Or imagine a cancer or dialysis patient who has to endure a mutli-hour process of IV drugs. They could escape to a virtual world during their treatment....or even take a vacation. And that's not all.

"Virtual reality has the potential to disrupt nearly every single industry that's out there."

How about this...a set of holograms you can "play with" but imagine taking an exercise class with a virtual instructor, learning some new dance moves, or experiencing current events in a whole new way, all from the comfort of your couch.

"It essentially blows away the TV glass. As storytellers, we have used words and pictures for decades when trying to tell a story. Now we have the technology to actually place someone in someone else's shoes," says Hill.

Hill adds her hope is by putting you in those virtual shoes, it will stir a unique sense of empathy, and you can help contribute to the solution.

That sense of empathy also hit home for Sarah Hill and some of her colleagues.

When they found out that some veterans weren't able to go on the Honor Flight to see the war memorials in Washington D.C., they took one of their 360 degree cameras with them.

Now they have Honor Everywhere....a virtual reality app that veterans can watch with a smartphone.

KHQA brought Story Up and Honor Everywhere to the Illinois Veteran's Home to share the technology.

Honor Everywhere is an organization that works with the Central Missouri Honor Flight to help veterans see their memorials in Washington D-C.

Honor Everywhere is clear, it is not a replacement for Honor Flight.

It uses virtual reality to bring the memorials to veterans who are too sick to travel.

With the help of Story Up, KHQA brought Honor Everywhere to the Illinois Veterans Home in Quincy to give a handful of veterans a tour they say they will never forget.

Watch the veteran's experience by clicking here.

Volunteers at Honor Everywhere and Story Up travel around to bring the 360 degree video to veterans where ever they can, but resources are limited.

The Honor Everywhere is a free app you can download, and if you have a set of Virtual Reality goggles, you can share this experience with a veteran in your life.

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