Not Disney related but in Japan... I have posted a lenghty report and photos of Aichi's World Fair EXPO 2005 in the Non-Disney section if anyone cares to take a look or planning a visit there soon. It ends in sept 25th. Hurry!
Great review! Thanks TDLFAN.
Could you give a little more information on the Hitachi exhibit, 'Nature Contact'?
Certainly. You enter the welcome lobby where you must present your EXPO ticket (which has a microchip in it). The attendant scans it, selects your language of choice, takes you picture). Then you move on to a walk-thru area where you are given a little portable computer which you hang around your neck. The idea is to feature this little console which is able to pick up information from almost anything that has an informational microchips in them...something we may see in the near future from Toshiba. As you walk thru the preshow, you can go to informational posts and by placing your portable device up to the post, the portable unit picks up information concerning different animals in the endangered species list. You can read the info (with pics) in color on your portable 2" screen.
After the preshow, you then hand over your portable unit to an attendant, then head on to ride "Nature Contact" The ride vehicle comes prepared with onboard personal speaker, a computer hand sensor you must wear on your right hand, and then use the computerized virtual reality binoculars next to your seat. The ride then starts and takes you thru different sets of an african savannah, a coral reef, etc etc. You can see the sets sitting there in front of you, but in order to enjoy the show, you must look at the sets thru your virtual binoculars, then you can see virtual animals on the set in front of you. The sensor attached to your right hand allows you to interact with the animals...For example, looking at your right hand with the virtual binoculars.. you may see bananas in your hand which you can throw to monkeys, or you may select and animal to hold in your hand. I selected a bird, which magically sat in my hand. In the underwater scene, a turtle swam by but came up to my hand to feed...etc etc etc... get the idea. At one point, there is a virtual rhino that charges against your vehicle and it makes the vehicle rock a bit. Also a menacing snake looks from above your head and it scared me as I expected it to strike, but didn't. The virtual reality is stunningly real due to placing the images on real 3D sets in front of you. One of my fav moments is when a giraffe comes up close and looks down on you. You are basically looking up to her, but if you look away from her, you can also see other things that are happening in the background, just like real life! The ride is about 10 mins long. It's awesome and I highly recommend it if you go to EXPO.
Also..remember your picture taken in the beginning?? You will find out the reason for that at the end of the ride. Better than ET saying "goodbye (name)!!"
Last edited by TDLFAN; 04-12-2005 at 10:58 AM.
TDLFAN, thanks for the information. It sounds like one of the more orginal idea for an attraction that I have heard of in a long time. In the past one of the problems with virtual reality attractions is that they can't handle large crowds.... It looks like they have got the cost down far enough to make the binoculars and hands sents in large numbers.
Unless I win the lottery, I will not be able to make it to the EXPO.
You can learn much more about the Hitachi Pavilion on their website at: