Cuban refugees can now return to their homeland with Oculus Rift

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There are numerous Cuban immigrants in the US who fled from their homeland in the decades past in order to escape the political upheaval in the country, and few have been able to return since then. However, using a 3D-capable GoPro, two decedents of Cuban refugees managed to travel to the nation’s capital, Havana, and create a three dimensional version of the city that can be explored using Oculus Rift. 

For filmmakers Julian Yuri Rodriguez and Andres Rivera, who grew up in Miami, Cuba had long been a “forbidden island.” “I always heard beautiful stories about Cuba, but at the same time because of what happened with Fidel Castro, you are forbidden to go there,” says Rodriguez, 26. His own grandmother hadn’t been back since she fled in 1958. But last spring, together with old friend and cinematographer Rivera, Rodriguez traveled to Havana to bring a little bit of the country back home, in a way it had never been captured before: with a virtual reality experience that would let his grandmother visit her homeland again without ever crossing the border.

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