I never thought I'd write about Pokemon, but I recently saw the Pokemon game for the first time. Though I am not a convert, I can see why people get into it. For those that don't know, there are characters and you roam around looking for things and fighting things (from my understanding).
For fans, the Pokemon Go Plus device was released recently ($34.99) and allows for a cool AR experience where it looks like the little guys are all around you, instead of navigating in their Pokemon world.
Ok so the truth comes out at the end of the post- I'm sharing this with the world because I'm probably going to get this for my significant other, a grown man who loves the game. If this person exists in your life, it might make a good birthday or Christmas gift.
Be a Skater, or Ballet Dancer, without Commitment, Investment, or Being in Shape
I danced ballet when I was young. I've been wanting to get back into it as adult but the inevitable post college weight gain happened, and when I put pointe shoes on, I felt like every single bone in my foot broke simultaneously. I felt like a t-rex hippo trying to dance.
So when I watched this video, of people skateboarding in VR with a "skateboard" the natural application I thought of this was for dancing.
D-Box, a company that makes motion systems for entertainment and industrial use, has made this "skateboard" that has mechanics under it that are similar to hydraulics on a car that move it up and down. They sync the movement of the skateboard so it reacts to how you're skating. While not perfect, reports read do feel as though you're skating.
In it's current form, the cost is prohibitive from the average person owning one, so you'll have to continue to do this the real way, or sans the mechanical skateboard and use Oculus with games like Tony Hawk's Pro Skater.
Upon more search of VR with ballet specifically, I uncovered the video above, of La Peri, where you can actually play the role of someone on stage. Be warned, that it involves significant equipment and space as of now, and not something in your living room anytime soon, nevertheless very cool. Equally moving is the first comment under the video, of a viewer that lives in a rural area and has always wanted to watch a ballet live. Accessibility is wonderful and VR makes this possible.
When/if this technology is refined, imagine "picking up a skill" sans:
-Investment in equipment for different activities
-Having to worry that you have the correct body type
-Having to find a facility/area where you can do the activity (what if you don't live within proximity to any place where you can? e.g. no dance studios near me, no soccer field, etc.)
-Having to incur time and financial cost to go to this area
-General sacrifice that comes with being good at anything
Remodeling and construction are in most people's lives at some point. Whether you want to update your kitchen, need new fixtures for your bathroom, are moving into a new office space, or are opening the restaurant or retail store of your dreams. The list goes on, and all of these involve lots of time and money spent on design and construction.
If you've ever embarked on anything construction related you know it's usually more money, time, and headaches than you budget for. I know from experience with a small commercial building I did with my dad, to my brother's self contracted warehouse space, to a simple deck in our Bellevue, WA backyard my dad built.
Enter mixed reality (MR), and many design and construction issues are resolved! Synonymous with augmented realty- mixed realty is when the environment is the actual one you're in, and your viewer overlays fabricated images and objects. DIRRT, a publicly traded Canadian manufacturer of sustainable customized interiors, debuted their MR design technology, ICEreality, this past week, at the annual construction
show, NeoCon. Here are a few problems their technology solves:
Working with the designer is time consuming and we have to go back and forth several times before we agree on all aspects. Even then, I'm heavily reliant on the designer's suggestions and usually the reputable designers are very, very pricey.
MR Solution: You can see actual objects inserted into the actual space you are constructing in/on, in real time You can change a drywall to a glass wall and see what it looks like instantly. You can play on your own, or have a designer do it for you, or both.(PLEASE watch video above starting at 01:19 to view the glory of this description).
Construction Management Problems
When doing DIY construction, many times too many or too little materials are purchased, resulting in waste or an additional trip (i.e. cost) to the store. If you hired a contractor, sometimes, there is an issue of trust with the contractor in materials procurement- i.e. do you really need a truckload of cement? (another bonus- you can make that small design change, see what it looks like in a matter of seconds, and it might save you thousands of dollars!)
MR Solution: Exact measurements with materials to match in place before anything is built. A transparent itemized list of things can be made, so you can see where every piece goes, down to where the tiles and nails are (ok, I made this second sentence up, it's just a guess at something I think will be easily possible with this technology). Please watch at 06:40 of the video to see what I'm referencing.
Real Estate Sales Problems
It's so competitive. Everywhere you look there are cranes in cities all over the world, many of these constructing residential, commercial, and office buildings that need to be leased or sold, locally and internationally.
MR Solution: For all three types of real estate, MR lets them fill and design the space before (or after) it's built. Staging companies- those that fully furnish homes for the purpose of selling are popular in the US, and now this can be done via MR without the need for heavy lifting!
With MR you can now more easily design, plan, build, furnish, and sell whatever real estate project you're working on. No need for anyone to worry about losing jobs, I doubt this will replace any human, but if you want to be ahead of the curve, best in class, or gain more international clientele, it would be a wise choice to get on this technology as early as you can.
What is a VR Backpack?
Alienware, for those of us not into extreme gaming, is a company that makes very expensive hardware for people very into gaming, and now they are venturing into the VR Backpack space, or exploring it at least.
A bit stunned at WTF could this be, I had to further investigate what a VR backpack was and here it is: wearing a computer on your back, so you don't have to trip over cables and be limited to the proximity of the PC, when you use a PC based VR headset (as you currently need to with all the major robust headsets).
Personally not a gamer so please read on about the other notables that are already in the game: HP and Zotec. Even more reading here.
VR & AR are for everyone.