USC Research Professor Skip Rizzo thought his mother might like a trip to Rome.

She put on a virtual reality headset, and soon her face was aglow: “Oh! Carl and I used to love this little bar that was right over here.” The visuals brought back memories from 35 years ago when she visited Italy with her husband; this time, Rizzo was right there with her, in a postage stamp-sized video off to one side.

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