VR Forecast

We have an ongoing debate… or maybe it is just a voicing of opinions… in Second Life™ about VR and the Oculus Rift. Will it be a game changer or a minor fad? Perhaps like the Space Navigator. A few people use it, but the majority have ignored it. And when will it arrive? We have no guaranteed answers, but we have some good predictions coming out of the game industry.

In January 2014 at Steam Developer Days Michael Abrash gave a talk about the state of VR and what he expects to happen over the next two years. The video runs about 28 minutes. I cover some of the points from it below as well as some other information.

We are starting to hear of industries that will support VR headsets ramping up. Companies have leaks and there are some dandies. See: Massive leak regarding Sony VR headset? The competition is heating up.

Of course the thing with leaks is they usually cannot be verified and are often from anonymous sources. If there is anything politicians have taught us, it is anyone quoting an anonymous source is not to be trusted. So, we do need to salt such information pretty heavily. But, we are starting to get more rumors and hear more little leaks. This we call smoke and smoke usually leads or at least alerts us to the fire, the reality. Continue reading

Oculus… Facebook?

Jo Yardley has an article up about Facebook buying out Oculus Rift. It would be nice to know the details of that deal. But, an upfront US$2 billion… that is a deal. See: Facebook buys Oculus Rift for $2 billion.

Is this a good thing for Second Life™ users? At this point there is no way to know. Everyone on both the Facebook and Oculus sides are talking about how great a deal this is. Companies always do that.

Putting $2 billion in Oculus’ pocket is a good thing for them. Having access to Facebook’s resources is a good thing for them. But, they had to give up some measure of control. Only time will tell if that works out. Remember the movie? Still that is a lot of money for a tech company that has yet to prove the tech will be as popular as hyped.

For Facebook they get the Oculus tech. They obviously think they can to something with it. Strongly enough they shelled out $2 billion. But, what they say they will do with it is pretty vague.

We do know Facebook is NOT privacy oriented. Nor are they a game company. So, where will they take Oculus development? Minecraft developer Markus Persson is backing off plans for teaming with Oculus because Facebook creeps him out.

I just want a ‘retail’ Rift to play with.

Microsoft’s Spark

Microsoft® has just put a new game development platform out in Beta version: SPARK®. This is a game developer’s free form design tool and game engine. The results can be played on Xbox One, Win 8 and soon other platforms.

You can read more at TechCrunch: Microsoft’s Project Spark DIY Game Creation Software Beta Begins Today.

Unfortunately this is a Windows 8 app only. As yet it does not even run on RT. It also is more of a novice game maker’s tool. While free form it is still within a set world, a pre-made world that one can modify.

I think The Verge’s article better describes SPARK: Microsoft’s ‘Project Spark’ beta arrives on Windows 8.1, lets you create an Xbox One game.

3D Modeling Made Easy

Jo Yardley has an article on her blog about 3D Sweep, a program that Rod Humble tipped her off about. The program is unique in that it uses techniques similar to what humans use to see 3D objects in 2D photos.

Jo’s article is: Stunning but easy 3D modeling from photos. She includes the video I have here.

A more detailed explanation of the software is at Singularity Hub here: Israeli Researchers Debut Software That Extracts 3-D Objects From Photos.

The article explains, “Shamir and his colleagues haven’t decided yet whether to pursue 3-Sweep as a commercial product, but they are continuing to improve the software and have applied for a patent on what they’ve accomplished so far, Shamir told Singularity Hub.”

Since they are patenting it, I would assume someone will make commercial software out of this technique. That will take some time so we likely will not see this out for use any time soon.  Continue reading

Oculus Share

There is a recent video up of an interview by Engadget  with Oculus VR’s Palmer Luckey and Nate Mitchell talking about Oculus Share.  13 minutes.

It seems the task of sharing has come up for the Oculus developers. Consider. Have you thought of how often we take screen captures to share with others? How would you do that while using the Rift?

There is also the challenge of how will you use stores, find Rift games… all the basic tasks, in and out of game, we perform when preparing to, playing, exploring, and sharing games. This will apparently some like KOINUP, but for Rift users and developers.  Continue reading

Oculus Rift and Sex

Sinful Robot - A project Designed for the Oculus Rift

Sinful Robot – A project Designed for the Oculus Rift

You had to know this was coming… no pun intended. I think it is basic human nature to wonder how sex would be with or if… and add your whatever here…  It’s like which is more fun peanut butter, Nutella, or chocolate syrup? And if you include an ice cube and …

So, the question has to have run through some minds regarding how sex would be with the Oculus Rift. A lot of people seem to play the game of ‘breaking in’ new things. When I first thought of it I guessed people would be dodging when Tango Lolas went by.

Well it is not just running through some minds. A company in Irvine, California named Sinful Robot is developing a ‘sex’ game for the Oculus Rift: Sinful Robot is hiring people and moving ahead in developing an erotic game that will have as its basic quest as sexual gratification. AND this has been in progress for almost a year. Nobody told me…  Continue reading