Working in VR 40-50 hours per week

I thought I’d share this unusual article here. It touches on topics we frequently discuss—hardware, software, screens, ergonomics, digital communication—but the approach, working full time in VR, is obviously completely different. I really like the level of candor and tradeoffs being made. Right now there’s no good VR story on macOS or iOS, but between the rumored efforts of Apple and the publicized experiments like this one, that situation will change.


Thanks for sharing that article. I have been playing with the Oculus Quest 2 and Horizon Workrooms on the Mac and it looks promising. You can work with others, user your Mac screen in VR and you even see and use your Magic Keyboard.


Interesting. Don’t know if I could do that full time based on current technology but can certainly imagine a future hybrid world when VR technology gets integrated in a glasses like form factor

I had a quick play this morning to see how I got on. It certainly requires setup time.

  1. I found that I hadn’t set my guardian area up correctly, so my hands and keyboard were outside of it, causing red lines to be visible all the time.
  2. I couldn’t turn my hands off, so typing would end up causing isssues after a while.
  3. It didn’t feel any better than just a pair of headphones and typing.
  4. It’s rare I look at my keyboard, but I can’t touch type 100%, so that’s not helpful.

Fascinating. I hadn’t understood Apple’s interest in VR. Now I see where we all may be going. I’m resisting the urge to buy stuff now LOL!

I received an oculus for xmas and being in the virtual space appealed to me. I read this recent cal newport article about immersed. It is definitely fidgety (took me 2-4 hours of trial and error to get things they way I like and keep them that way) and I regularly peek through the bottom of my headset to get my keyboard position right.
Yesterday, I spent about 4-6 hours sitting in my virtual alpine chalet working. After that amount of time I was pretty much done for the day. It’s definitely usable if you’re able to put up with the minor discomfort of the headset and fiddliness.
It might just be the novelty of the thing, but i feel more locked in and less prone to distraction. My work situation is basically I spend most days traveling to and fro, but I spend 1-2 days a week at my home office. On these days, its sometimes very hard to get into work mode. I think I will probably use the headset for part of these days when I’m having trouble focusing. I don’t think I could spend 40+ hours in the thing but it sounds like the author of the article in the original post made several modifications to increase comfort and needs lots of virtual screens (I have to zoom in on PDFs to read them in the app, I don’t see how that guy can read all the text on all those screens but apparently it works for him).
Looking forward now to Apple’s headset release. Recent discussion on Upgrade podcast debated whether the first gen model rumored to be released this year will be a developer kit only or an uber expensive consumer model. Jason Snell mentioned developers will certainly need some time to get their apps VR or AR ready.

1 Like

I can touch type so I think this would be cool. Don’t own a VR headset but wouldn’t it be heavy after ~3 hours?

I haven’t noticed that so far, just a general discomfort and fatigue from having it covering my head and face. No neck strain so far as I can tell. Although my experience, is very limited.

1 Like

Re dealing with trouble getting focused, I want to recommend Focusmate.

The founder was on Focused once, and I paid no attention then.

But in my New Years resolution to stop procrastinating after lunch, I gave it a try. It’s weird magic. You log on, tell a stranger what you plan to do in the next hour, you both sit and work while seeing each other on video, and after an hour you check in and then leave. It’s been great for me.