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Advance Program »

VR & Entertainment ­ Are We There Yet?


The VR attractions at DisneyQuest, Disney’s location-based entertainment center in Orlando Florida, are some of the most highly rated attractions in any Disney theme park. Why then, in almost seven years, have no new VR attractions been developed for any Disney theme park?

For this panel I will discuss the potential of VR technology as an entertainment medium. I will present several of the lessons learned in developing virtual and interactive attractions for DisneyQuest and beyond.

I will outline the challenges faced in bringing VR to the masses, in particular, the problems of robustness, throughput, and hygiene.

I will describe how VR technology, though perhaps not ready for a starring role yet, is being successfully used behind the camera as an interactive design tool.

I will present several examples of how VR simulations have been used to help the creative team at Walt Disney Imagineering build better theme park rides and attractions.

About the Speaker

photo: mark mine


Mark Mine is currently Director of the Creative Technology Group at Walt Disney Imagineering (WDI), the creative design, engineering, and production, arm of The Walt Disney Company.

The goal of the Creative Technology Group is to explore ways to use both pre-rendered and real-time computer graphics techniques to help WDI's creative team to design and build better theme park rides and attractions.

Mark began his career at Disney in 1997 working for the VR Studio (originally part of R&D, now part of the Walt Disney Internet Group). Mark’s research has focused on the development of tools for the creation and manipulation of virtual spaces.

The VR Studio's areas of expertise include: location-based entertainment (building several award winning attractions for DisneyQuest in Orlando Florida), simulation and visualization for theme park design, and most recently, massively multiplayer online games for kids ( and

Mark has a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Michigan, an M.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Southern California, and an M.S. & Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of North Carolina.

His Ph.D. dissertation, "Exploiting Proprioception in Virtual-Environment Interaction" (written under the direction of Dr. Frederick P. Brooks Jr.) explores the benefits and limitations of working in a virtual world.