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Good times for VR?
January 18th 2013, 00:53 CET by TreeFrog

If you're anything like me (protip: don't be anything like me), you'll remember the short-lived VR craze with some hipster-grade ironic nostalgia, but mostly with disappointment. William Gibson had promised us digital otherworlds over a decade ago, and all we got was The Lawnmower Man. And that wasn't even a documentary, people!

But! Now some punk called Palmer Luckey, who has the temerity to be only 20 years old, is all like "hey, here's this Oculus Rift VR headset I just crapped out this morning and BTW it's the most awesome shit you peasants have ever seen" AND HE'S NOT WRONG.

AND! On top of that we have the Leap Motion guys and their millimetre-precision doodad taking a big enough crap on the Kinect that Asus are offering aforementioned doodad as an option with their PCs. We'll ignore the oh-so-90s Best Buy retail exclusivity.

Interesting times.
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Home » Topic: Good times for VR?

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#18 by TreeFrog
2013-01-19 23:46:20
Michael Abrash from Valve blogged about various problems with VR on current tech recently. Apparently latency is the big one. Display density and refresh rates ain't no thang.

"One part disembowels me while another slowly eats its way through the gas line. As I bleed out on the floor, it reminds me that I need to buy milk." - Jibble
#19 by m0nty
2013-01-20 03:34:58
http://tinfinger.blogspot.com
Milan, I saw a patent for a bug up your ass. But it's being challenged on grounds of prior art.
#20 by Milan Brezovský
2013-01-20 10:24:39
http://uglycode.com
Yay, me and my bug are famous! I mean internet-famous.

Parhelic Triangle is coming. Eventually.
#21 by Gunp01nt
2013-01-20 12:44:21
supersimon33@hotmail.com
Well, if 3D movies can come back from where we left them in the 80s, why not revisit the nineties as well? It still baffles me that something seen as a gimmick 30 years ago can come back fundamentally unchanged (where user experience is concerned, content creation is much easier now) and suddenly it takes off.

Maybe we can also bring the term 'interactive multimedia' back and Philips can reimage the CDi.

She's probably had sex with like 4 different guys by now and has no idea who he is anymore, his face lost in a memory sea of dicks.
#22 by Milan Brezovský
2013-01-20 12:58:22
http://uglycode.com
Interactive movie games!

Parhelic Triangle is coming. Eventually.
#23 by deadlock
2013-01-20 14:36:31
http://www.deadlocked.org/
There's a difference in technique between how they do 3D now and how they did it in the 80s, gunpo1nt, and an even bigger gap in terms of result. I do think the current love affair that the studios have with 3D is fleeting though.

I'm not convinced about VR either - or even AR, for that matter. I suspect the former will be as gimmicky as it was in the 90s and that the latter will fail to live up to anyone's expectation and will cause more problems than it solves.

#24 by gaggle
2013-01-20 16:30:02
Cool link TreeFrog, thanks. Latency is clearly an issue with head tracking. Maybe full 6 DOF head tracking is overkill though, maybe it'd be good enough to start with 3 rotational DOF to get head orientation right and we worry about position later.

But that's just the VR, more fundamentally to me is the resolution and refresh rates. The blog describes these as big painpoints. If the displays aren't great then the point of using goggles seems a bit lost on me.. but I entered some values into a display density calculator and it says 4k resolution stereo displays to get anywhere. If that even does it, it was actually north of 8k to get close to 'retina'-like pixel densities (because the displays are so close to the eye).

And that's at 240+ hz if we want VR/AR. Man, things are still a long way off, I'm fully prepared for the Oculus to disappoint. It looks like I get to go to GDC this year, maybe I can find my way to Valve's VR talk to hear how they're doing.

"Roses are red, violets are blue, rubbish is dumped and so are you." : : - FML
#25 by Dumdeedum
2013-01-20 17:10:29
http://www.dumdeedum.com
I suspect VR may be a little like the Wii in that while it's a fun diversion, we're eventually going to move on from anything that requires us to do more than slump on a sofa, motionless except for our monstrously overdeveloped thumbs.

That said, I'd love to play around with one, tie it into a Thief-esque game and it could be awesome.  Shooters might be a problem if you had to use the headset to aim... well unless you own shares in a company that makes those neckbraces.

MP3 Of The Week: is this thing on?
#26 by Squeaky
2013-01-20 19:08:44
Interactive movie games!

7th Guest was just rereleased on iOS.
#27 by Gunp01nt
2013-01-21 00:13:05
supersimon33@hotmail.com
#23 by deadlock

There's a difference in technique between how they do 3D now and how they did it in the 80s, gunpo1nt, and an even bigger gap in terms of result.


I'm sure the technology is different but I'm really not seeing a lot of difference between seeing 3D movies now and seeing Captain EO way back when except that the goggles are flimsy plastic instead of flimsy cardboard.

She's probably had sex with like 4 different guys by now and has no idea who he is anymore, his face lost in a memory sea of dicks.
#28 by None-1a
2013-01-21 10:14:12
#23 by deadlock
I'm not convinced about VR either - or even AR, for that matter. I suspect the former will be as gimmicky as it was in the 90s and that the latter will fail to live up to anyone's expectation and will cause more problems than it solves.


I don't know AR could be extremely useful for a lot of productivity problems. I can imagine quite a few great uses in warehouse style work. Order picking using an AR HUD that allows a human to decide the most efficient route to everything instead of hoping the system managed it or adaptive sorting that's aware of what's arriving and places things in the most efficient locations falling back to the AR to let people know those locations instead of remaining constant regardless of inefficiency for example. Problem is those kind of things would be most useful in low wage high turn over companies that aren't about to pay for something like this.

Don't forget garnishes such as: Fish shaped solid waste.
#29 by deadlock
2013-01-21 10:43:36
http://www.deadlocked.org/
Useful right up to the point were someone gets impaled on a forklift blade because they (or the driver) were paying more attention to a virtual arrow on their HUD than they were to their surroundings.

Nay I say. NAY!

#30 by Milan Brezovský
2013-01-21 10:46:50
http://uglycode.com
See, this is why I mentioned Technopoly. Technology eventually not just assist us to get from A to B, it will be dictating our every move to please the gods of Efficiency.

Parhelic Triangle is coming. Eventually.
#31 by Milan Brezovský
2013-01-21 10:55:58
http://uglycode.com
They will ban the forklifts and hire more trained monkeys. Hopefully non-zombie monkeys.

Parhelic Triangle is coming. Eventually.
#32 by None-1a
2013-01-21 14:58:48
There are still places that use a largely manual process, thus the low wages and high turnover. You also get into a situation where that process can be better setup to separate manual and powered tasks since any violation of that process can mean instant termination (with a reduced learning period you don't really have to care any more).

Also I think you're assuming the AR itself will be far more intrusive then really necessary. Following around a virtual arrow like it's some localized GPS is exactly what you don't want. You just want adaptive location labeling taking the place of normal set signage and/or object highlighting (think along the lines of how Deus Ex handles interactive objects).

Don't forget garnishes such as: Fish shaped solid waste.
#33 by Gunp01nt
2013-01-21 16:08:05
supersimon33@hotmail.com
#29 by deadlock

Useful right up to the point were someone gets impaled on a forklift blade because they (or the driver) were paying more attention to a virtual arrow on their HUD than they were to their surroundings.


Then clearly humans are the weak link here. Skynet has an easy solution to that problem.

She's probably had sex with like 4 different guys by now and has no idea who he is anymore, his face lost in a memory sea of dicks.
#34 by Shadarr
2013-01-22 07:44:25
shadarr@gmail.com http://digital-luddite.com
I'm sure the technology is different but I'm really not seeing a lot of difference between seeing 3D movies now and seeing Captain EO way back when except that the goggles are flimsy plastic instead of flimsy cardboard.

The technology may have changed but the method of creating the effect is still just polarized light putting different images on each eyeball.  Until there is a method of displaying 3D that accounts for the fact that I sometimes move my head and also want to focus on different things, it'll remain a shitty gimmick.

VR doesn't solve the problem since we already have enough lag with regular HDTVs to make games like Assassin's Creed a bitch to play.  I can only imagine how much worse it would be in 3D.

"I hope you one day decide to smarten the fuck up so I can stand to look at your posts." - gaggle
#35 by Matt Perkins
2013-01-23 01:58:44
wizardque@yahoo.com http://whatwouldmattdo.com/
VR...I'll be interested when it works like lawn mower man (the total immersement, not the funky hardware).

A more interesting product is the add on for the upcoming xbox (probably) that Microsoft showed at CES. http://readwrite.com/2013/01/22/microsoft-has-a-mindblowing-display-technology.

Of course, they just throwing it out there and then refusing to talk about it...

"programmers talk from a very deep gnome cavern, full of gold mechanics" - wisdom from the ancients
#36 by None-1a
2013-01-23 06:41:39
It'd be a lot more interesting if Microsoft didn't have a nasty habit of either completely ignoring what the research guys are doing or totally screwing it up while translating it to a finished product.

Don't forget garnishes such as: Fish shaped solid waste.
#37 by bago
2013-01-23 10:46:28
manga_Rando@hotmail.com
Shadarr, we've had that for years. The wedge display uses head tracking to beam a projection of a scene stereoscopically onto each of your eyeballs. This means two people can use the same screen to see private scenes in 3d.
http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/about/feature/nui.aspx

REMEMbER DESCENT THE HIGHEST FORM of PATRIOTiC
#38 by yotsuya
2013-01-23 20:14:06
I'm going to need bifocals in like two years anyway, so 3D is like blah.

#39 by TreeFrog
2013-01-24 01:56:35
The 3D comparison doesn't work for me. The film industry resurrected that to try and get people back in cinemas. VR's back on the agenda because the tech involved has finally reached the point where it can render something that isn't just a series of boxes.

"One part disembowels me while another slowly eats its way through the gas line. As I bleed out on the floor, it reminds me that I need to buy milk." - Jibble
#40 by Gunp01nt
2013-01-24 12:04:42
supersimon33@hotmail.com
Why not? It's both consumer entertainment technology that had its day, was eventually deemed obsolete and is now back in a fundamentally unchanged form.
The fact that computer graphics have significantly improved doesn't so much impact VR specifically because it impacts a much larger range of entertainment forms. It doesn't help to make VR more attractive to consumers, compared to simply sitting on the couch with your Xbox controller, than it was 20 years ago.

Or maybe I'm not getting your angle. You are coming at it from a consumer entertainment angle, right?

She's probably had sex with like 4 different guys by now and has no idea who he is anymore, his face lost in a memory sea of dicks.
#41 by gaggle
2013-01-24 16:26:16
But tablets is an old ide too, just revamped with modern technology. So I don't know that it tells me anything that a particular idea has been tried before or not. I do think it's a valid point that 3D was a top-down profit driven decision vs VR being more of a bottoms-up grassrooty thing. Whether that will translate into anything at all I don't know, but it's a relevant difference to me.

"Roses are red, violets are blue, rubbish is dumped and so are you." : : - FML
#42 by Milan Brezovský
2013-01-24 19:55:56
http://uglycode.com
Well it all depends on if Apple will market iReality.

Or if anyone with a decent marketing will market anything decent, basically.

Parhelic Triangle is coming. Eventually.
#43 by Shadarr
2013-01-24 21:59:10
shadarr@gmail.com http://digital-luddite.com
VR basically needs a killer app.  Avatar was supposed to be that for 3D movies, but it wasn't.  Apparently the killer app for tablets was old people who can't see an iPhone.  For VR to catch on, it's needs a reason to exist beyond virtual real estate tours and slightly more immersive videogames.

"I hope you one day decide to smarten the fuck up so I can stand to look at your posts." - gaggle
#44 by TreeFrog
2013-01-24 23:38:42
What gaggle said.

"One part disembowels me while another slowly eats its way through the gas line. As I bleed out on the floor, it reminds me that I need to buy milk." - Jibble
#45 by TreeFrog
2013-01-27 23:52:25
A FOSS Rift driver for Mirror's Edge, that AaaAAaa game and others.

"One part disembowels me while another slowly eats its way through the gas line. As I bleed out on the floor, it reminds me that I need to buy milk." - Jibble
#46 by Milan Brezovský
2013-01-28 10:43:27
http://uglycode.com
Now I'm getting interested.

Parhelic Triangle is coming. Eventually.
#47 by anaqer
2013-01-28 16:05:07
Wake me up when someone does a good Descent port for it.

"Apple hates everyone now." - BJB
#48 by deadlock
2013-01-28 19:11:48
http://www.deadlocked.org/
I wonder how jarring the Uncanny Valley effect is when you're viewing games through these devices.

#49 by Milan Brezovský
2013-01-28 22:15:05
http://uglycode.com
Of course, now that PlanetCrap posts about VR, Gamasutra is all over it.

Parhelic Triangle is coming. Eventually.
#50 by Milan Brezovský
2013-02-05 13:36:23
http://uglycode.com
Talk, bitches! What TV shows are worth killing time for?

Parhelic Triangle is coming. Eventually.
#51 by deadlock
2013-02-05 15:50:38
http://www.deadlocked.org/
The first season of 'Homeland' is excellent. I enjoyed the second season but I think it's one of those YMMV things.

#52 by TreeFrog
2013-02-05 16:57:43
Apparently all it takes to make Twitter collectively wet itself is Zooey Deschanel getting kissed. I tried to watch New Girl once. Whatever it is, it's not for me.

"One part disembowels me while another slowly eats its way through the gas line. As I bleed out on the floor, it reminds me that I need to buy milk." - Jibble
#53 by Shadarr
2013-02-05 21:15:30
shadarr@gmail.com http://digital-luddite.com
If the word "adorkable" doesn't make your hands twist into arthritic rage-claws, then the show probably won't either.

"I hope you one day decide to smarten the fuck up so I can stand to look at your posts." - gaggle
#54 by Milan Brezovský
2013-02-05 21:45:48
http://uglycode.com
Wait, that's something that can be pronounced? I thought it only existed on Internet. You know, like when you take a fish out of water and it suffocates, that's what happens with Internet slang, right?

Parhelic Triangle is coming. Eventually.
#55 by Shadarr
2013-02-05 22:03:31
shadarr@gmail.com http://digital-luddite.com
What rock are you living under?  Haven't you heard anyone say "el oh el" in real life?  There is no barrier between the internet and the real world anymore, the last brick was pounded to dust when newscasters started reading Youtube comments on air.

"I hope you one day decide to smarten the fuck up so I can stand to look at your posts." - gaggle
#56 by Milan Brezovský
2013-02-06 12:27:37
http://uglycode.com
I was being facetious. I mean, both "el oh el" or "loll", while they make the least sense to be vocalized, have been with me ever since I was a teenager (and we were all more impressionable), and it's one of the things that fly under your radar, like swearing, or "she said" in novels or articles in any text, e.g.
Can you find the
the error in here?


But "adorkable" is something that you have to produce consciously, and while it's obviously a matter of taste, it feels like it should only ever said in a pretentiously ironic fashion.

Parhelic Triangle is coming. Eventually.
#57 by Milan Brezovský
2013-02-06 13:45:44
http://uglycode.com
Also, The Witcher 2 on sale on Steam for 10 EUR, go buy it for all your friends and lovers and kids and family, so we get the third game that will be more open-worldly.

Parhelic Triangle is coming. Eventually.
#58 by gaggle
2013-02-06 21:22:35
You're old by scoffing at new words. I will make an effort to use adorkable in a sentence asap.

"Roses are red, violets are blue, rubbish is dumped and so are you." : : - FML
#59 by Wudi
2013-02-07 02:01:50
*LEAVE ZOOEY ALONE [internet tears under a blanket]! ALL SHE WANTS IS SOME TOMOATO SOUP[more internet tears under the blanket]! All you people care about is posting and making money off of her. She's a human! Leave Zooey alone!!!

Whaaaaaaa!

Zep--
*I only have rabbit ears so I have no idea what that new girl show is like, but she's cute in the iPhone commercial.

w0rd up!
#60 by jjohnsen
2013-02-07 05:39:04
http://www.johnsenclan.com
New Girl is funny.  Not really because of Zooey Deschanel though.

#61 by Dumdeedum
2013-02-08 17:21:12
http://www.dumdeedum.com
New Girl started poorly but it's slowly got better, to the point it's a harmless watch over a sandwich or whatever.  As JJ said though, it's largely down to a strong supporting cast, the new girl herself doesn't actually add much.  If all else fails, Hannah Simone.

MP3 Of The Week: is this thing on?
#62 by gaggle
2013-02-09 05:13:45
Argo was really good.

"Roses are red, violets are blue, rubbish is dumped and so are you." : : - FML
#63 by Gunp01nt
2013-02-09 21:21:39
supersimon33@hotmail.com
Since we have native English speakers from various countries here it seems a good place to ask: how should the word 'width' be pronounced? Is it like 'with' or more like 'wide' with a 'th' at the end?

She's probably had sex with like 4 different guys by now and has no idea who he is anymore, his face lost in a memory sea of dicks.
#64 by deadlock
2013-02-10 00:13:37
http://www.deadlocked.org/
It's one of those words where the pronunciation varies according to region and speaker but the 'wi-' part is always pronounced as in 'with' and never as in 'wide'. Some people pronounce the 'd', but very lightly. Others pronounce it almost exactly like 'with' but with a sharper, shorter 'th' sound.

#65 by Milan Brezovský
2013-02-10 15:46:32
http://uglycode.com
I hate þorn. It's hard to get it right.

Parhelic Triangle is coming. Eventually.
#66 by TreeFrog
2013-02-10 16:18:06
#65 by Milan Brezovský
I hate þorn. It's hard to get it right.

Yeah, I have trouble pronouncing þorn.

"One part disembowels me while another slowly eats its way through the gas line. As I bleed out on the floor, it reminds me that I need to buy milk." - Jibble
#67 by Gunp01nt
2013-02-10 20:06:44
supersimon33@hotmail.com
Thanks deadlock.

She's probably had sex with like 4 different guys by now and has no idea who he is anymore, his face lost in a memory sea of dicks.
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