Computer scientists at the University of Buffalo have developed V-Frog, the world's first virtual-reality-based frog dissection software designed for biology education. Contrary to previous virtual frog dissection kits, this software is a real simulation product. As says one researcher, 'other products out there are multi-media, not true virtual reality.' And the developers say that 'virtual-reality frog dissection means no exposure to chemicals and potentially dangerous instruments, no specimen or ecosystem harm and no specimen disintegration.' Home users can even buy the software on Amazon for $90. For universities, a license starts at $5,000 per building where the software is used. But read more...
Heart and Lungs
All the images above have been picked from various pages of the Tactus Technologies website. Tactus Technologies has developed the V-Frog software during the last three years and is now selling it (see the bottom of this post). All these images belong to Tactus Technologies.
Here are some more details about V-Frog. "V-Frog, which operates on a personal computer using a standard mouse, actually simulates nearly unlimited manipulation of specimen tissue. As a result, every dissection is different, reflecting each student's individual work. The software is designed for grades 7 through 12, plus advanced placement biology students. Using a simple mouse and PC, students can 'pick up' a scalpel, cut open V-Frog's skin, and explore the internal organs -- with true real-time interaction and 3-D navigation that actually accommodates discovery and procedures not possible with a physical frog specimen."
It took three years to the programmers to develop the software. "Life-like V-Frog uniquely allows for comparative anatomy, letting students make parallels and contrasts between the amphibian's physiology and that of a human being, crab and other organisms. In addition, V-Frog allows students to watch a beating heart, observe digestion, dissect, probe and perform endoscopic procedures. 'With other products, it's just a video -- static and two-dimensional,' explains Kevin Chugh, president and chief scientist at Tactus Technologies. 'This is a simulation product, not simply a static Web site. It's actually superior to physical specimens and multi-media representations. The technology allows for virtual surgery. Our tissue simulation lets students see the correlation between form and function, and can be manipulated however the student wishes. It's truly a physically simulated dissection.'"
Here is how you can buy V-Frog.
Sources: University at Buffalo (UB) news release, February 8, 2008; and various websites
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