“For virtual reality to really cross into the mainstream, it's gotta be more than just really awesome, killer games” DiCarlo says. “What is the most important use case in VR? We haven't figured it out yet, but there are lots of ideas.” DiCarlo thinks video games and immersive video are the obvious places for VR to start, but he’s also anticipating a more native use case that couldn’t have been imagined before VR hardware and development tools became more commonplace. “What is the Twitter or Instagram of VR?" DiCarlo asks. “By that, I don't mean having tweets in VR or having filtered photos in VR— I mean that it's native to that platform, it's born of that platform and would not have existed without that platform.”

-Nick DiCarlo, Samsung VP of VR

A very good question.

At Oculus Connect Richard Yao, a research scientist at Oculus, shared a technique they explored for increasing user comfort. I'll let Yao explain the thinking. (slides [PDF])

It's an interesting method for flipping the perception that you're moving through space, to one where space is moving around you.

I wanted to explore how well it could work so I made a little demo where you can control the background layering and locking. Still undecided on applicability of using this technique.

A magic leap

25 Oct 2014
“More than the next stage of gaming, this new opportunity signals what I have long believed to be the ultimate stage in the evolution of computing—beyond the PC, mobile devices and even wearables— a platform in which we inhabit the worlds that we imagine, and where the processes of living and working and communicating and creating feel as natural and intuitive as life itself.”

Bing Gordon investor in Magic Leap

Nyan Cat VR

18 Oct 2014

Where are the cats? It's a good question, as there has been a positive dearth of cats in VR.

I thought I'd help out a little bit to rectify this situation with this port of a existing web project. Enjoy. (Warning, might want to turn down speakers).

Cardboard Vision

28 Sep 2014

When you put on a VR headset one thing you notice pretty quickly is that you can’t see the outside world. That’s often the point, but not always. Often you’ll want to see the real world either for simple ambient awareness or augmented reality applications. With cameras likely to be a standard feature on all consumer VR headsets passthrough video is something that I wanted to experiment with.

My first experiment is Cardboard Vision, a basic app for Cardboard that uses the back camera to show the world on a virtual screen.

Everyone loves filters so had to add those. It’s only a matter of time before we see Instagram VR. Additionally have control over the field of view of the screen which is fun to play with when paired up with additional camera lenses like from Photojojo that allow you to get a higher field of view more closely approximating your eyes verses the standard 60 degree FOV of phone camera.

As control of a touchscreen smartphone is challenging when the phone is in a holder I’ve added a way to control the app from another device such as a desktop computer. You can do this by loading the app on both devices with the same URL, with the hash at the end (e.g. '/#456') defining the 'room' you’re in. Better yet have someone else be in control of what you’re seeing to make it a social experience.

Crescent Bay

23 Sep 2014

It’s hard to stop thinking about what I experienced at Oculus Connect where they unveiled their latest prototype, ‘Crescent Bay.

The thing that is so special about it is that it crosses the threshold of delivering ‘presence,’ the sense that one is actually in another world. It’s a fragile quantity, only fleetingly giving me that sense for a few seconds at a time. It’s a powerful feeling that will only get stronger as the technology progresses.

And this is just a prototype of the future.

Very drastically

17 Sep 2014
“Some time in the next eighteen months, the world is going to change very drastically. Not like Apple Watch change—more like 1994 Web change.”

Jason Louv

CSS3D, 3D

1 Aug 2014

How do you get web content in 3D for VR? Not easily. Any early attempt is to use CSS3D transforms to position elements in 3D with two renderers, one for each eye. It actually kind of works alright, even without the post-processing for distortion and chromatic aberration correction. I'm working on some better approaches.

Another world

22 Jul 2014
“Today I finally got to see the virtual reality demo at Valve Software. And it completely blew me away. … In this demo, unlike all the others I have seen, a threshold has been crossed, and I have seen another world.”

Ken Perlin

Virtual Disney Worlds

12 Jul 2014
“One of the most exciting developments I see on the horizon is technology that will immerse us into entertaining worlds, or project those worlds and experiences into our lives. In essence, entertainment will be immeasurably enhanced with both virtual-reality experiences and augmented-reality experiences. Bringing us into created worlds and bringing created worlds into our world will fundamentally explode the boundaries of storytelling, unburdening the storyteller in ways we can't yet imagine.”

Robert Iger, CEO of Disney

Enormous change

8 Jul 2014
“We’re on the brink of a simply enormous change in visual communication.”

—Sir David Attenborough, working on virtual reality storytelling at Alchemy VR

“We’re talking about a massive revolution in storytelling and in content. It’s going to happen very quickly.”

Phil Harper, Alchemy VR’s creative director

The next television

7 Jul 2014
“I’m telling you: Cinematic VR will change everything. This technology represents a paradigm shift in entertainment and communications as significant as the radio or television.”

Anthony Shore

“VR hardware will get better, and better, and suddenly I looked at the limited little rectangle of my videos and saw something soon to be archaic, an arbitrary shape chosen by technological convenience rather than anything fundamentally meaningful to the human experience, and I saw VR as the platform for video, for social media, for the entire internet.”

Vi Hart, creating a VR-first video platform

“When you put on Oculus and get into VR and get that sense of presence, people are just streaming with ideas when they come out of it. They’re dreaming about these things. That’s why I think this will be the most powerful platform of all time. Everyone has an idea for it.”

Brendan Iribe, CEO of Oculus VR

“Virtual reality — I mean truly accurate, comfortable virtual reality — is the most important thing to happen to interactive entertainment in decades. I know it sounds like exaggeration, but it’s impossible to explain what this is like to someone who hasn’t experienced it for themselves. Your brain is convinced that you are somewhere else, that you are in another world. I have worked my entire career to get to this moment, to create something like this.”

Paul Bettner, creator of Lucky’s Tale (a game you will know soon)

I’m continually amazed by the ever growing number of people-in-the-know saying things like this, because it foretells a most amazing future, and it’s just around the corner.

SVVR Con

23 May 2014

It’s all in the headline description for the SVVR Conference: the world’s first professional conference for consumer virtual reality. A conference that gathered many of the key players in what is the rapid creation of a new industry, taking the first steps to explore the vast possibilities of virtual reality. The building of the foundation of the future is beginning.