Innovation is often defined as the intersection of technology and meaning through radical means. For us, that means we must balance our efforts to find empathetic meaning with an understanding of what lies at the bleeding edge of technology (think field-documentary-meets-’Minority Report’).

One way we expose ourselves to radical technology is through our involvement with the Desert Research Institute (DRI) in Reno, Nevada. Dating back to 2006, we saw potential for synergy between DuPuis and DRI and started our relationship by placing our Vice President, Jeff Pickett, as a part-time Managing Director of DRI’s Dandini Research Park, a “community of collaboration” for private sector companies to leverage a “competitive advantage of access” to DRI’s faculty, unique laboratories, and $50 million research funding base.

One of the tools we’re most excited about is DRIVE-6, a full-immersion virtual reality laboratory (the only one of its kind west of the Mississippi). DRIVE-6 enables DRI scientists and the DuPuis innovation team to create any virtual world with a given set of data assumptions that the user can manipulate while inside that world– making it possible to viscerally explore anything that can be imagined.

Our access to both DRI and DRIVE-6 gives us the ability to provide our clients with the unique opportunity to visualize their own data in this immersive environment, transforming the space to simulate virtual retail experience and complex new product innovations– pretty much anything we dream up together.

And, as you can see, we got a pretty big kick out of trying it out for ourselves, too.

Learn more about DRI from their website and this video.