“The gap between people dreaming things up in sci-fi and being able to build them in bits and atoms is shortening,” High Fidelity and Second Life founder Philip Rosedale said Tuesday at Gigaom’s Roadmap design conference.
High Fidelity uses webcam technology to create characters who can interact in virtual worlds. The webcam tracks facial movements, complete with eye contact and expressions, and mirrors that almost instantly in the virtual world so users are seeing how a person is actually reacting to whatever situation — just in an avatar form.
When asked about how science fiction informs his work, Rosedale admitted it was a big inspiration. “I look at science fiction as an instruction manual for virtual reality,” Rosedale said. “We’re only few years away from being able to build what people dream up.”
He elaborated by explaining that virtual reality would be a place where people could create these experiences. As computers become more powerful, we’ll be able to outdo what we think of as organic or natural in the real world. “The virtual worlds of tomorrow are going to be more, not less detailed than the real world of today,” Rosedale said.
Click headline to watch the video of the interview--
Don't you hate it when someone claims to have a magical new technology, but won't tell you how it works? When I saw that a super stealthy startup called Magic Leap had raised $542 million to make animals appear out of thin air, I resolved to find out exactly what was going on. Here's what I found.
Conceived as an immersive Arctic experience, Polar Sea 360 allows viewers to join the a three-man expedition on the Swedish sailboat Dax, as it travels 9,000 km from Reykjavik, Iceland, to the Aleutian Islands of Alaska.
Promoting “an interactive hybrid concept that combines cutting edge 360° video technology and documentary film to create a new form of interactive storytelling“, this expedition through the Northwest Passage tells the story of the Arctic’s transformation. The budget breaks down as €2M for TV and €388k for the interactive component.
On TV, the Polar Sea project is both developed as a 1x90mins film, Polar Sea, The Northwest passage, and as a doc series called Polar Sea 360, the Inter-Arctic Traveller Guide.
Beyond the physical journey on TV, the story is enriched with an immersive web and mobile experience centered around 360° video storytelling.
Last year I created a demo showing how CSS 3D transforms could be used to create 3D environments. The demo was a technical showcase of what could be achieved with CSS at the time but I wanted to see how far I could push things, so over the past few months I’ve been working on a new version with more complex models, realistic lighting, shadows and collision detection. This post documents how I did it and the techniques I used.
They say stories can come to life, and well, one group of MIT students have taken that idiom to an entirely new level. The team of Makers has recently created a wearable book that uses networked sensors and actuators to create a sort of cyberpunk-like Neverending Story, blurring the line between the bodies of a reader and protagonist.
The sensory fiction project — which built around James Tiptree’s The Girl Who Was Plugged In – was designed by Felix Heibeck, Alexis Hope, Julie Legault and Sophia Brueckner in the context of MIT’s Science Fiction To Science Fabrication class.
This is madness. What you are looking at is not a screenshot of Simcity. It is a megalopolis made entirely in Minecraft using 4.5 million blocks over the course of two years on an Xbox 360 (!) Its name is Titan City and yes, it's completely insane, especially when you get up close:
Kim Flintoff's insight:
And some people suggest games do not build engagement...
Virtual reality (VR) uses visual, auditory, and sometimes other sensory inputs to create an immersive, computer-generated environment. VR headsets fully cover users’ eyes and often ears, immersing the user in the digital experience. The headsets also track head movements, heightening the feeling of presence by allowing users to look around the virtual environment and see what they would actually see if they were in that place. VR headsets have the potential to provide compelling learning opportunities within safe and effective simulations, allowing students to explore content not possible in the classroom.
In Fidelity’s prototype virtual environment—which it says is the first financial services app written for Oculus—stocks are represented as office towers and lumped together in sector “neighborhoods.” The buildings’ footprints are shaped by trading volume and their rooftops are red or green depending on changes in price.
Fidelity is not claiming to have solved any actual problems with the app. But with $2 trillion under management, it wants to get ahead of how new interfaces might be used. “We have a hypothesis that virtual reality will take off in the consumer set in the next three to five years, so therefore we want to understand the technology,” says Hadley Stern, vice president at Fidelity Labs, a research wing of the brokerage company. “We want to get their feedback on this and start to think: how would active traders and other investors use virtual worlds to understand data?”
fWe are the Mozilla Research VR team. MozVR is our open lab, a VR website about VR websites, where we share experiments and code.
mozvr is a virtual reality website
You will need a VR-enabled build of Firefox for Mac or PC, and an Oculus Rift headset. Support for additional devices coming soon. MozVR will also work with VR-enabled builds of Chromium. Once you have your VR-enabled browser and Rift, check our quick Read Me for configuration tips. On your first run, pressing "Enter VR" will prompt you to grant Fullscreen permission. Grant it and check the "Remember" option, if one is present. You will then be able to experience MozVR.
Participants in this class will learn how to build, program, and control haptic devices, which are mechatronic devices that allow users to feel virtual or remote environments. In the process, users will gain an appreciation for the capabilities and limitations of human touch, develop an intuitive connection between equations that describe physical interactions and how they feel, and gain practical interdisciplinary engineering skills related to robotics, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, bioengineering, and computer science. To participate fully, users will need to acquire/build the components of a Hapkit, and assemble and program the device. Laboratory assignments using Hapkit will give users hands-on experience in assembling mechanical systems, making circuits, programming Arduino-based micro-controllers, and testing their haptic creations. (You can still take the online course without the Hapkit, but you will not be able to do most of the laboratories.) After the class, we hope that you will continue to use and modify your Hapkit, and let us know about your haptic creations.
Doctors have today condemned the Government’s announcement to weaken the Renewable Energy Target, saying it will increase the number of deaths and sickness across Australia- especially among vulnerable people such as children, the elderly and those with chronic illness.
Doctors for the Environment Australia spokesperson Dr David Shearman says, “The neutering of the RET shows we have an ideological Government with disregard for the health of Australians, as well as for evidence-based medicine which quite clearly shows the devastating harm that fossil fuel has on our health, our families’ health and the health of our communities.”
This project was funded by the Australian Government Office for Learning and Teaching to evaluate and promote pedagogies that enhance the learning outcomes of online simulations in business and related fields. Business simulations offer authentic learning experiences that mirror real world problems and enable students to practise and develop graduate capabilities, technical skills and strategic decision making skills. Emerging technologies along with increased bandwidth have created new opportunities for online simulations and provide improved flexibility and portability for students. However, online simulations are not effective unless they are embedded within a pedagogic framework that optimises learning outcomes. The resources provided by this project are designed to demystify the process of embedding an online simulation into the curriculum.