The sights and sounds of everyday life have become background noise to most of us; for someone with autism, it can be quite terrifying.
Through the power of virtual reality, the National Autism Society wants to give each of us a passing glimpse into what life is like for someone on the autism spectrum. The simulation is a remake of their previous video about a boy with autism who quickly becomes overwhelmed by flickering lights, the whir of the indoor climate control and the ever-present tapping of shoes on the tile floor.
The charity hopes to raise awareness by communicating the experiences of someone with autism, a move it hopes will be met with increased understanding and greater compassion for those living with the disorder.
“To help the public understand a little more about autism, we’re really excited to be the first charity using virtual reality to demonstrate what this aspect of autism can feel, see and sound like,” writes Mark Lever, chief executive of the National Autistic Society.
This simulation, however terrifying, is a 360-degree video that allows you to become fully immersed in the dizzying experience many autistic people call daily life. With headphones and a VR viewer, the simulation is truly dreadful.
For many, it’s an eye-opening experience that might provide their first encounter in what it’s like for someone on the spectrum. For others, it’s a reminder that patience, kindness and acceptance are the key to dealing with autistic friends of family members.
You can download the app at the National Autistic Society website as part of its ‘Too Much Information’ campaign.