I have been a proud owner of the PlayStation VR hardware since its launch last year, and for the past several months I’ve enjoyed playing VR-based games and demos, while also having a fun time playing non-VR games in theater mode. VR, in general, is successful when the visuals and audio become optimally immersive, but most of the focus had been on visuals. To show how capable PSVR can be by having the audio and other sounds adapt to your movement in the virtual space, Sony brought in violinist Joshua Bell to record a 360-degree virtual reality studio session at Air Studios’ Lyndhurst Hall in London. This project, which features adaptive audio and positional tracking, allows the subject wearing the PSVR helmet to semi-realistically “step inside” the recording studio.
In this technology-themed episode of PractitioNERD Documented, or “Doc’D”, host Montez McCrary will be discussing the history, implementations, and the current and possible future legacy of virtual reality technologies.
Remember all the funny injuries and destruction of property that the Wii caused? Well, not the Wii ITSELF, just the people using the Wii Remotes? Anyways, a decade later, everyone has an HD camera in their pocket to record the next generation of game-related injuries, but this time, virtual reality is taking the place of Nintendo’s last generation console. Some will consider this a serious issue (because safety and injuries and all; that’s why legal/safety policies come with these products), but myself, this brings more opportunity for free comedy.
Gest, pronounced “jest” and developed startup Apotact Labs, is a lightweight adjustable black strap that fits around your palm, attached by wires to four small bands that clip onto your fingers. Through the combination of accelerometers, gyroscopes, and magnetometers (like your smartphone), it will figure out the relative positions of your fingers and transmit them to a computer or mobile device over Bluetooth. The Gest’s battery lasts longer than the Leap Motion (since it doesn’t have to collect and analyze the huge amount of data), responds faster, and doesn’t require a separate camera
Apotact Labs CEO and co-founder Mike Pfister describes the Gest as motion control’s answer to the tried-and-true mouse and keyboard set-up. At launch, it’ll work with Photoshop, supporting gestures to adjust control sliders, add layers, and change brush sizes. The Gest is aimed at potential customers who typically use a stylus and don’t want to put it down to type or click through a menu; instead they’d have the stylus in their dominant hand while wearing a Gest on the other. Another realm for the Gest’s potential is with virtual reality devices as a controller, something currently lacking a standard in that area — save for the standard computer keyboard. If you want to go whole-hog and Minority Report style, you can put a Gest on each hand and “air type” using the device’s motion tracker and the aid of a predictive typing tool.
Now, before we get ahead of ourselves, the Gest is not not meant to perfectly recreate the way our hand moves around; it simply captures our hand’s complex gestures and assigns them to to specific computer controls. Also, there’s no thumb clip, as the project’s designers say that they can infer a lot of the thumb’s motion based on how your palm moves. Gest is aiming to ship to its Kickstarter backers in November of 2016 — should it achieve its $100,000 funding goal — with a “early bird” funding option allowing backers to buy a single Gest for $99 (rather than the final price of $199), then pick whether they want a right-handed or left-handed model.
For the uninitiated, “Supreme Warrior” was an awful fighting game that took place in a first-person perspective that was released on the Sega CD (or Sega Mega CD), 3DO and the Sega 32X-CD (oh, sweet lord; that was a THING…) in 1994 and 1995. The less said about that game the better.
OK; I do love playing video games, but I see no real purpose of playing a video game of me playing a video game. It’s just that the redunancy is not appreiciated by me. However, this virtual Game Boy emulator that was programmed for the Oculus Rift is pretty interesting. Essentially, the Facebook-owned virtual reality headset comes with a set of ROMs and a fairly complicated setup as opposed to just grabbing an actual Game Boy and playing a quick game of Tetris. Continue reading YOU TOO Can Play a virtual Game Boy in the Oculus Rift→
To all of my children of the 1990’s, do you remember the failed promise of virtual reality? Do you recall the days of going to your local mall and trying out the new VR video game at the arcade? Do you remember wearing that stupid, oversized helmet that still had the stink of the prior person who used the unit? **shudders** Anyway, in a nut shell, we the public — as well as developers — were not ready for virtual reality. Nowadays, however, the advancements in technology and gaming have giving an opening for VR to make a comeback, and the belle of the ball is the Oculus Rift VR Gaming Headset from Oculus VR. Continue reading Virtual Reality Dreams Realized with Oculus Rift!→