VR vs AR

“But in time, these points on the spectrum will blur: we’ll have AR headsets that can augment your whole field of view, and VR headsets which can pull in photo-realistic digital representations of your environment, and devices in between which do a bit of both. Once the technology progresses to this point, the distinction between VR and AR will be far less relevant than it is today.”

Virtual and Augmented Realities: Asking the right questions and traveling the path ahead, Clay Bavot

Using Oculus VR

While at the Tech Inclusion Conference in San Francisco a few weeks ago, I watched Clouds Over Sidra: A Virtual Reality film. There was an Oculus booth there and the Oculus team was kind enough to let visitors experience VR and use the equipment they had set up. I used Oculus Rift with a Samsung smartphone.

The film was great. Really eye opening. And such an amazing way to tell a story! Virtual reality adds a whole new feeling to a story. With virtual reality, a story becomes a visual experience.

Yet, the screen was pixelated so that took the “realness” (“presence” is the the industry term) down a notch. And the lack of peripheral vision and absence of my own body or hands when I looked down brought the realness down another notch.

Still really cool technology that I am so excited about, but I definitely left feeling a little underwhelmed.

4 People in VR

A recent tweet on my twitter feed pointed out 4 influential people in VR: Nabeel Hyatt, Alex Taussig, Bilal Zuberi, and Darshan Shankar. I was curious about each of them, so did a bit of looking around. All four live in California. Here is a brief blurb on each of them:

Nabeel Hyatt

Nabeel has been in the startup space for quite some time. He is currently an investor at Spark Capital. Lives in San Francisco. He studied design and computer science. Co-founded Conduit, which was acquired by Zynga.

Alex Taussig

Currently a partner at Highland Capital. Studied physics, materials engineering, and business. Has been involved in a lot of hardware, computing, and deep tech companies.

Bilal Zuberi

Partner at Lux Capital. Studied philosophy. Big on education and students. Loves cricket.

Darshan Shankar

Has been a founder several times. Alumni of Y Combinator. Currently working on a virtual reality startup. Studied mathematics, computer science, and electric engineering. Into photography and ultimate frisbee.

Adding a nose to VR reduces “simulator sickness”

virtual roller coaster gif

A study done at Purdue University’s Department of Computer Graphics Technology found that placing a nose in the lower center of a virtual reality headset’s screen can reduce the effects of simulator sickness by 13.5 percent.

Feeling a bit nauseous when experiencing virtual reality is a long-standing problem without a clear solution. This feeling is most likely caused by a conflict between what your eyes see and the motion your body feels. When your eyes see that you are moving a particular way but your body doesn’t feel the same thing, your body can get a bit annoyed – causing you to feel a bit odd as a result. Since the “seeing” is more and more realistic with virtual reality, this feeling is more common with virtual reality as opposed to a realistic video game played on a t.v.

Now if they can just get the nose shading just right . . .



Oculus Rift Music Album


Interesting to consider releasing an album via the Oculus Rift. Could be some cool stuff there.

“Can you see releasing an album for Oculus Rift? Maybe people could play along on virtual instruments.

Yes and no. Andrew and I have had some conversations. When I did the app album, it was all based on touch screens and the fact that I knew I could [create a virtual] music school, a dream since my childhood. I only did that album because I felt like I had content that made sense, that could relate to the technology. It can’t just be working with the gadget for the sake of the gadget. But also it’s about budgets. You can do apps cheaply. Apps was kind of punk, actually. It was like starting a punk band again. Filming for Oculus Rift is not.”

Bjork on Keeping “Vulnicura” off Spotify: “It’s about respect, you know?” by Rob Brunner