Disappointing as it's been to reach the year 2014 without a flying car, a personal jetpack, or a robot boyfriend, it looks like the future is officially now when it comes to virtual reality: Oculus VR, maker of the much-talked-about headset called Oculus Rift has been acquired by Facebook, putting immersive virtual reality technology one step closer to widespread adoption.
For those not in the know, the Oculus Rift is mainly an accessory for gamers at the moment — although it has also been proven useful in some pretty creative and boundary-pushing ways, most notably an experiment in which a hack for the headset allowed men and women to virtually swap bodies.
With so many possibilities on the horizon — and mucho Facebook bucks behind it — we're pretty sure that it will only be a matter of time before pivotal scenes from our favorite sci-fi flicks start happening off-screen.
Everybody will be kung fu fighting
Care to throw a punch or two without breaking a sweat — or anything else? Don your Oculus Rift headset and plug yourself into the Matrix, where you and your best boyfriend Larry Fishburne can spar in a virtual arena to your little hearts' content.
Follow the white Bronco
In "Deja Vu," a high-speed car chase between a cop and a criminal was able to take place on a four-day time delay, thanks to a nifty combination of virtual reality and time travel. Outfit the Oculus Rift with a similar accouterment, and aspiring crime fighters can take a mind-trip back to 1994 and try their own hand at catching OJ.
Enter the mind of a killer
With virtual reality headset technology, it shouldn't be long before mental health professionals can take a cue from Jennifer Lopez sci-fi flick "The Cell," and enter the twisted psyche of a tormented psycho in order to do some deep-digging, hands-on therapy. What could possibly go wrong?
Go on a mission to Mars
It gives a whole new meaning to the word "stay-cation": just wait until the Oculus Rift pairs up with some "Total Recall" style technology so that you, too, can enjoy action-packed interplanetary travel without ever physically leaving the comfort of your couch.
Team up with a buddy and test drive a Jaeger
If two people can use the Oculus Rift to virtually exchange bodies, then it should be a piece of cake to mutually link their mental faculties and take the giant, ocean-going robots from "Pacific Rim" out for a delightful spin.
Live forever in the digital ether
Where a headset goes, the full-body immersive virtual reality experience of "Lawnmower Man" is bound to follow!
Forget about living out your life in the boring sphere of the real; pop on the inevitable Oculus Rift bodysuit, insert your consciousness into the mainframe, leave behind a pile of pruny goo where your corporeal form used to be, and spend your immortality as a Candy Crush game piece, a cat gif, or a prolific internet troll.
What do you think the Facebook/Oculus deal will yield?