omplete QPORIT: November 2015

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

 

A WORKING OUTLINE OF EXTENDED REALITY

 

A WORKING OUTLINE OF EXTENDED REALITY

This is an outline of the technology (and some of the content) of XR.  (XR = eXtended Reality = VR + AR + MR + GR + …)

(Note: "GR" is a term I thought of a few seconds ago to designate "GIFTing Reality": possible holiday presents for anyone interested in VR and the other eXtended Realities. Please scroll down to the bottom of this outline for a special section on VIRTUAL REALITY HOLIDAY GIFT possibilities.)

We will be writing about these outline topics in QPORIT, with resource guides and reviews, for those new to XR as well as the experts. The articles are designed to provide an overview of the current status, and a way of looking into the future. We hope to make it easier to discover products and services, and find the resources needed to develop XR.

XR computing is the biggest advance in computer tech since the development of the personal computer.

The recent rapid development of head mounted audio and video displays, together with new sensors, including head mounted cameras, wearable and other IoT sensing devices, plus improvements in AI, faster wireless data transfers, and the continuing effect of Moore’s Law with processing units ever smaller and more powerful, make possible, now and through the next few years, dramatic breakthroughs in the applications of computing.

To understand the enormous scope of XR, here is a small table of some possible variations. It can be
Ø  Isolated from the real world (VR) or integrated with it (AR, MR)
Ø  Limited field of view (FOV) or full sphere panoramic 4π (360x180) FOV
Ø  2D or 3D
Ø  Still image or video
Ø  Linear or interactive
Ø  Single user or collaborative
Ø  Made to involve sight, sound, touch, balance, motion, position,,,
Ø  Live, recorded (image or video), digitally generated, or a mixture
Ø  Fictional, factional, or abstract
Ø  About almost anything.

Below is a working outline of XR.  We will be writing detailed stories about specific products, and surveying categories of products. Some products fall into more than one category. This outline is not complete! The outline will continue to change!

This is a working outline... not quite a first draft. There may be (aka are!) typos, spelling, formatting and other errors. Many things (categories, developers, products, services, companies, etc) are missing!

MOST IMPORTANT: If you have a product, production, or service which is covered here, please let us know, so we can include it with the related stories.  Equally important, if your personal favorite categories are not represented, please let us know, so we can include them. We appreciate your input!

PLEASE SEND COMMENTS, CORRECTIONS, ADDITIONS, PRESS INFO, ETC TO

QPORIT@GMAIL.COM


SPECIAL TOPICS
FUTURE OF COMPUTING
SENSORY PERCEPTION
WHAT IS XR? VR? AR? MR? EYEWEARE?…

RECENT STORIES IN QPORIT

XR - EXTENDED REALITY (XR = VR + AR + MR + ...)
SOME VARIATIONS ON REALITY ...

LINKS TO ADDITIONAL RECENT STORIES ON XR


OUTLINE

Note: This story contains many links. In this era of rampant hacking, it is always possible for even a well established company to have compromised content. New sites may not be vetted. Beware and be vigilant! Use a powerful malware filter whenever scanning websites or downloading or accessing external content, especially code. 

In this outline little, if any, distinction is made between products, services, etc, that actually exist (many do not), and products that are in beta, pre-beta, alpha, rumor, or fantasy stage.

The objective is to follow this outline (as it develops) with more detailed stories about particular products, projects, services, categories, and people – in reviews, previews, interviews, and my personal views … -- using words, photos, and 2D 3D and XR videos.



MAJOR COMPANIES WITH (COMPETING!) DEVICE / LANGUAGE SPECIFICATIONS
            Facebook – Oculus
            Google – Cardboard, Project Tango, Magic Leap, Android
            Microsoft – HoloLens, Windows 10
            SONY – PlayStation VR
            OpenSource – OSVR
HTC – Vive

    
What's missing? 

Apple has a few relevant patents, but no announced projects. IBM has some relevant research. Yahoo has not made significant noise, nor has Nintendo. Cisco is active in networking, of course, and IoT. Intel has 3D sensing devices as well as fundamental chips.
Amazon has AWS cloud services and retail, but not currently a VR or AR device.  Some companies are getting into XR by creating devices for the Cardboard spec.…


HARDWARE
           
AYE!WEARE
            THE IDEAL! EYE!WEARE
                                    INPUTS to the system
                                    OUTPUT to the user, to remote devices, storage, other users….
                                    FUTURE EYEGLASSES
                                    …
            VR HEAD MOUNTED DISPLAYS (HMD)
                        Oculus Rift
                                    https://www.oculus.com/en-us/
                        Oculus/Samsung Gear VR
                                    https://www.oculus.com/en-us/
                        OSVR
                                    http://www.osvr.org/
                        Cardboard
                                    https://www.google.com/get/cardboard/
                        Cardboard compatible hardware
                                    …
                        Project Tango (mounted on another device)
https://www.google.com/atap/project-tango/
                        HTC Vive
                                    http://www.htcvr.com/
                        PlayStation VR
                                    https://www.playstation.com/en-gb/explore/ps4/features/playstation-vr/
            AR
                        Google Glass (v2?)
            MR
                        HoloLens
                                    https://www.microsoft.com/microsoft-hololens/en-us
                        Magic Leap
                                    http://www.magicleap.com/#/home
                        Oculus Rift with camera
                        Gear VR with pass-through camera
                        Cardboard with pass-through camera
            BRAINWAVE
                        …
CONTROLLERS
HANDS & DISTANCE SENSORS
Oculus Touch
Leap Motion
https://www.leapmotion.com/
Xbox controller
BODY AND MOTION
            VirZoom
                        http://www.virzoom.com/
VOICE
            Cortana (MS)
                        http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-10/getstarted-what-is-cortana
            Google Now
                                    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_Now
            …
DISTANCE SENSORS
            Intel
            Project Tango
            HTC Vive
            Oculus
            Kinect
            Hololens
            Plus stereo cameras, most hand controllers, etc
OTHER SENSORS
Visual
Audio
Touch
Body Motion
Mental
Biometric
Environmental
…other

CAMERAS
VIDEO
PANORAMIC 3D
Jaunt
http://www.jauntvr.com/#about
Samsung Beyond
Google GoPro Jump
https://www.google.com/get/cardboard/jump/
            Nokia Ozo
                        https://ozo.nokia.com/
PANORAMIC 2D
PixPro 360
MOTION CAPTURE
Salto
http://salto3d.com/
STILL PANORAMIC 3D
Matterport
http://matterport.com/
EMBEDDED
Most HMD’s will (or at least can) have 3D video cameras and distance sensors embedded


SOFTWARE
MIDDLEWARE
Unity
http://unity3d.com/
Unreal
WebVR
Havok (for WebVR)
              http://www.havok.com/
CryEngine (for WebVR)
http://www.crytek.com/cryengine
            …
OS & LANGUAGES
Android
http://developer.android.com/index.html
Windows 10, C, C#, C++, DirectX 12
Java
            https://www.java.com/en/
JavaScript
Three.js
OpenGL
WebGL

VIDEO EDITING &/|| PANORAMIC STITCHING
Premiere Pro CC
http://www.adobe.com/products/premiere.html
Magix
Kolor
KcPano
            …

READING & WATCHING
BOOKS
FICTION
READY PLAYER ONE
NON-FICTION
            HOW-TO
OCULUS RIFT IN ACTION
UNITY VIRTUAL REALITY PROJECTS
LEARNING VIRTUAL REALITY
            STRATEGY
            …
NEWS
WEBSITES
QPORIT
www.qporit.com
NEWSLETTERS
QPORIT’S Augmented & Virtual Reality Daily
http://paper.li/QPORIT/1433372865
            TWEETS
https://twitter.com/search?q=virtual%20reality&src=typd
            @qporit
@AltspaceVR
@ARVRNews
@comogard
@ConvrgeVR
@GearVR_us
@jema_vr
@KaleidoVR
@virtrealitytime
@oculus
@official_gdc
@otoy
@riftcentral
@Riftmax
@RtoVR
@stanfordvr
@unity3d
@UploadVR
@virtrealitytime
@VRChatNet
@vreducation
@Vrideo
@vrlosangeles
@vrreporter
@wearvr


CLASSIC MOVIES & VIDEO RELATED TO VR
“LAWNMOWER MAN”
“INCEPTION”
“CAPRICA”
“AVATAR”
         
XR CONTENT & CONTENT DEVELOPERS
           
TARGET HMD PLATFORMS
            CURRENT VR
GEAR VR
CARDBOARD
TANGO
OSVR
IN DEVELOPMENT VR MR
OCULUS RIFT
HOLOLENS
PLAYSTATION VR
MAGIC LEAP
HTC VIVE

 GENRES
            TYPE
            Generated by software
                        Photographic/Video
                        Mixed (Digital + Environment)
            FORMAT
Full spherical (360x180 = 4 ) or partial (eg hemisphere, 360 band)
2D or 3D
Still image or moving video
            CONTENT FORMS, TOPICS, APPLICATIONS
                        Linear (Drama, Comedy, Documentary …)
                                    “Intimate Strangers”
                        Interactive (Games, Puzzles …)
                        Transmedia
Story + Data or Interactivity
Live + Digital
                                                “Sleep No More” (testing VR)
                        Scientific visualization
                        Scientific research
Instructional
Remote communication
                                    Teleconferencing
                                    Collaboration
                                    Social spaces
                        Art
                        There are applications in virtually every industry

HOSTING
            YouTube
                        Panoramic videos
            Netflix on Gear VR
                        Movies (2D, standard aspect ratio, only)
            Play Store
                        Apps for Cardboard and Gear VR
            Oculus Store
                        Apps
                        Panoramic 3D still images
                        Panoramic 3D videos
            Samsung Theaters & Milk VR
                        User loaded 3D panoramic images and videos
            Im360 Theater on GearVR
User loaded 3D panoramic images and videos
            YouVisit
              WearVR (supporting many VR formats)
                        http:/www.wearVR.com
EEVO
                        https://eevo.com/
STREAMING
            NextVR
http://www.nextVR.com/             
            im360
                        im360.immersivemedia.com
              …
SOCIAL SPACES
AltspaceVR
http://altvr.com/
JanusVR
Converge
http://www.convrge.co/
Riftmax
http://www.riftmax.com/
VR chat
http://www.vrchat.net/
            …
DEVELOPERS
            vrse
                        http://vrse.com/
            Samsung
            Oculus Story Studio
                        https://storystudio.oculus.com/en-us/
            IM360
                        http://im360.immersivemedia.com/watch/im360/
            NextVR
                        http://www.nextvr.com/
            Google Spotlight Stories
YouVisit
http://www.youvisit.com/                                               
            Almost every Hollywood movie studio is testing and experimenting with XR
Almost every Hollywood and FX house is testing and experimenting with XR.
Almost every game development studio is testing and experimenting with XR

SERVICES
RENDERING
            Otoy
                        https://home.otoy.com/
LEASING RIGS
            Jaunt
http://www.jauntvr.com/#about
STREAMING
Im360
http://im360.immersivemedia.com/watch/im360/
NextVR
            http://www.nextvr.com/
Stream VR
                        
https://streamvr.com
            CLOUD STORAGE AND PROCESSING
                        MS Azure
                        Amazon AWS
                        Google
                        …
            GENERAL RETAIL
                        Amazon
                        B & H
                        Best Buy
                        …
PROFESSIONAL
ACCOUNTING
STARTUP BUSINESS MANAGEMENT
PR AGENCIES
AD AGENCIES
LEGAL SERVICES
            Entrepreneurial and business
            IP (Patent, Trademark, Privacy …)
            Liability
            Entertainment Law


MEETUPS AND MEETINGS

CONFERENCES

            CES
                        January 6-9, 2016
                                    https://www.cesweb.org/
            SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL (VR?)
January 21-31, 2016
VISION SUMMIT 2016
February 10-11, 2016
http://visionsummit2016.com/
            GDC VR
                        March 14-15, 2016
TRIBECA FILM FESTIVAL (STORYSCAPES)
                        April 13-24, 2016
                                    https://tribecafilm.com/festival/submissions
            SXSW
                        March 11-18, 2016
            E3
                        June 14-16, 2016
                                    https://www.e3expo.com/
            SIGGRAPH
                        July 24-28, 2016
                                    http://s2016.siggraph.org/
NEW YORK FILM FESTIVAL (CONVERGENCE)
                        September 23- …, 2016
                        https://www.filmlinc.org

DEVELOPER CONFERENCES
            MS BUILD
            GOOGLE I/O
            OCULUS CONNECT
CONTESTS / HACKATHONS / OPEN SOURCE COLLABORATIONS
MEETUPS
            NY
                      …
            LA
http://www.meetup.com/find/?allMeetups=false&keywords=virtual+reality&radius=50&userFreeform=los+angeles&gcResults=Los+Angeles%2C+CA%2C+USA%3AUS%3ACalifornia%3ALos+Angeles+County%3ALos+Angeles%3Anull%3Anull%3A34.0522342%3A-118.2436849&change=yes&sort=default&eventFilter=mysugg
                        …
            SF
http://www.meetup.com/find/?allMeetups=false&keywords=virtual+reality&radius=50&userFreeform=san+francisco&gcResults=San+Francisco%2C+CA%2C+USA%3AUS%3ACalifornia%3ASan+Francisco+County%3ASan+Francisco%3Anull%3Anull%3A37.7749295%3A-122.41941550000001&change=yes&sort=default&eventFilter=mysugg            …
                        …

JOBS, INVESTORS, INCUBATORS …

JOBS
            TYPES OF JOBS
                        Coding
                        Unity
                        3D Artists
                        Experts in 3D and panoramic imaging
                        Project Producers
                        User Interface Designers
                        Game Designers
                        3D Panoramic Filmmakers, editors, cinematographers, etc
                        Hardware Engineers
                        PR, Marketing and Sales
                        Trainers and Evangelists
                        Indie/Entrepreneurs/Self-employed
                        Legal & Accounting
                        Startup business support
                        Actors and models (improv, green-screen, or motion capture experience a +)
                        Lots of similar and related jobs also in IoT, AI, etc
                        …
           COMPANIES THAT MAY BE HIRING
                        Most companies with active XR development projects
                        Most industries “experimenting” with XR
                        Hollywood studios
                        Hollywood FX studios
                        Game companies
                        Medicine
                        Space, Astronomy
                        Science research
                        Advertising
                                    Fashion
                                    Travel
                                    Cars and other vehicles
                        Real Estate
News
                        Publishing
                        …                 
            RECRUITERS
            …
FUNDING
            CROWDFUNDING
                        Kickstarter
                        IndieGogo
            INVESTORS
Rothenberg Ventures
            http://rothenbergventures.com/
Formation 8
            http://formation8.com//
Comcast Ventures
            http://www.comcastventures.com/
Time Warner Investments
            http://www.timewarner.com/company/time-warner-investments
                        Andreesson Horowitz
           COMPANIES WITH SIGNIFICANT REPORTED VENTURE FUNDING
                        Magic Leap
                        NextVR
                        …
INCUBATORS & ACCELERATORS
Rothenberg Ventures River
            http://rothenbergventures.com/riverriver.com/

COURSES AND RESEARCH
ACADEMIC
Stanford Virtual Human Interaction Lab
            https://vhil.stanford.edu/
NYU
INDUSTRIAL
GOOGLE ATAP
OCULUS
IBM RESEARCH
http://www.research.ibm.com/
MS HOLOLENS
SAMSUNG
http://thinktankteam.info/
http://samsungaccelerator.com/

IDEAL TRAINING FOR NEW XR HARDWARE & SOFTWARE

LIVE & LOCAL!
Conferences & hands-on demos
Classes & tutorials
Meetups with experts, developers, and users
ONLINE
VIDEO
                        Classes
                        Tutorials
                        Demos and samples in action
            CODE
Samples
            NEWS
                        Blogs
                        Reviews
Previews
INTERVIEWS
With users, developers and other experts
PRINTED (& ONLINE) EXPLANATORY & TUTORIAL
            Well written specs
Well written reference manuals
Well written user manuals
Well written best practices manuals
Well written books
HELP & SUPPORT
            Chat line
            Phone desk
            Monitored forums
            Known bug list
            Evangelist visits
           

RELATED TOPICS

AI - ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE
LARGE DATA ANALYSIS
IMAGE AND SPEECH RECOGNITION AND ANALYSIS
EMERGENT BEHAVIOR                
AL - ARTIFICIAL LIFE
            ROBOTICS
            IoT – INTERNET OF THINGS
AND ALSO
GAME DESIGN AND DEVELOPMENT
            FILM AND THEATER TECH, INCLUDING DIRECTING AND ACTING
            JOURNALISM
            SCIENCE RESEARCH AND SCIENTIFIC VISUALIZATION
            ALMOST EVERYTHING ELSE
            …






***
ENJOY THE HOLIDAYS!

GR

** GIFTING REALITY **
HOLIDAY GIFTS



VIDEOS

Lawnmower Man is an early film about a Virtual Reality project that has inspired many people to become interested in Virtual Reality, and it is remarkably prescient.

Inception and Avatar suggest Virtual Reality experiences, and Caprica is a fascinating TV show in which a Virtual Reality social space is very important.

HER is a terrific film about Virtual Personalities becoming part of our lives.

I think Avatar, (but only) in IMAX and 3D, is one of the greatest movies ever made and one of the most important. I would love to see it rendered to be viewed in panoramic 3D VR on an Oculus Rift!

LAWNMOWER MAN

The Lawnmower Man




INCEPTION

Inception (Blu-ray)




CAPRICA

Caprica: Season 1.0




AVATAR

Avatar




HER

Her





BOOKS

Here are three good books to learn how to create Virtual Reality projects.

Since the development software (Unity or WebVR) is free (though eventually if you make lot$ of $$ with Unity there is a cost) and Google Cardboard can be very inexpensive in cost (but it is recommended to get one of the better models!), there is almost no $$ barrier to starting development of real applications. Gear VR is less than $100.00 (a penny less not counting tax or shipping, but if you do not have a late model Samsung phone that is an extra cost). Gear VR is a step up from the best Cardboard HMD's (Head Mounted Displays), but an easy path is to start on Cardboard. Then the evolution to Gear VR is simple.

The Oculus Rift is several levels up from Gear VR, but it will not be available until 2016. But it is wise, if you wish to develop for the Rift, to start now developing for Gear VR..

Other HMD's including Microsoft's HoloLens, which combines generated text and images with the real world, will also begin to ship -- at least to developers -- in 2016, and they recommend Unity as a preferred development system. So beginning development now with Cardboard and Gear VR as a first target is a good way to develop skills.




LEARNING VIRTUAL REALITY

Learning Virtual Reality: Developing Immersive Experiences and Applications for Desktop, Web, and Mobile




UNITY VIRTUAL REALITY PROJECTS

Unity Virtual Reality Projects




OCULUS RIFT IN ACTION

Oculus Rift in Action




"Ready Player One" is a novel that, like the movie Lawnmower Man, has inspired many people to develop an interest in Virtual Reality.

READY PLAYER ONE

Ready Player One: A Novel






HARDWARE

GEAR VR

To experience VR as either a user or developer, it is necessary, of course, to get some hardware. The best hardware available now is Gear VR.

The new GEAR VR HMD (Head Mounted Display) is now available -- for orders for a penny less than $100.00. 

UPDATE: As of Nov 28 2015 orders already taken are shipping from Amazon. For new orders, they are currently "out of stock". According to Samsung  (http://www.samsung.com/us/explore/gear-vr/) 
an order on the Samsung site "Ships in 3 - 4 weeks. NOTE: Product may NOT arrive by 12/25/15".

 .  
Compared to the initial version, the new unit is:




NOTE: It is compatible (only) with
- Galaxy Note5
- Galaxy S6 edge+
- Galaxy S6
- Galaxy S6 edge

(also, a software update from your carrier is required for S6 edge+ and Note5)

The GEAR VR is actually the only real VR device currently available. (More about Google CARDBOARD below.) Other devices will debut next year.

I have found the first version of GEAR VR to be comfortable and rather fun and pleasant to use. This new version should be even better.

There is interesting content available now. including 3D full sphere dramas. There is a lot of content experimenting with the possibilities of VR. Movies from NETFLIX are available. Some news and entertainment content is being streamed live by NextVR. Right now, the most stunning content is a collection of 3D 360 photos created by OTOY.

All you need to do is put the GEAR VR on and select content from the OCULUS store, which pops up automatically. Most content is currently free. In addition to content on the OCULUS store, there will be more and more VR apps that can be downloaded from other sites onto your SAMSUNG smartphone and then immediately viewed on the GEAR VR.

More and more content is becoming available for the GEAR VR every day. 3D video is going to get real good very soon with 4096x4096 full sphere 3D videos coming to MILK VR.

Anyone planning to develop for XR should absolutely get the GEAR VR and experiment with it. (Note: XR = VR, AR, MR or any other R. I give the whole bunch the single nickname XR - for eXtended Reality; and X is also often used for the unknown, which I think is appropriate.)

If you are developing for VR, content -- including 3D interactive apps, and 2D, 3D and spherical photos and videos -- can all be directly loaded from your computer to your smartphone and viewed on the GEAR VR. (You may need developer access to your phone to load the content.) App content can be created in either native OCULUS/ANDROID code, or using UNITY. Photos and video can be just standard photos and videos, created by an ordinary camera with an ordinary editor. But with special cameras and editors, it is possible to create full spherical 3D video content yourself.



CARDBOARD

Cardboard is an entry level version of Virtual Reality. There are many possibilities for hardware and for applications. But Cardboard is simply a specification, and it does not specify quality, so there are many implementations of Cardboard HMD's and some -- especially those actually made of cardboard -- are not always very good. I suggest a sturdy plastic version.

CARDBOARD PRODUCTS



ZEISS VR ONE CARDBOARD COMPATIBLE

The Zeiss VR One should be one of the better Cardboard compatible HMD's. The device itself actually may cost more than the Gear VR, but it may be compatible with your current smart phone. Note that it may need a specific tray for your particular smart phone, so be sure to check the specifications for any one you purchase.




Here is some more information about the Zeiss VR One

ZEISS VR ONE ON TUMBLR
http://zeissvrone.tumblr.com/


***
ENJOY THE HOLIDAYS!


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