2018, Artificial Intelligence, Auto, Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Entertainment, Hardware, Intel, Internet, Mobile, News, Sport, Virtual Reality (VR)

CES: Intel CEO Krzanich keynote highlights AI and VR

Intel CEO Brian Krzanich used Monday’s CES 2018 keynote to highlight how data is changing our work and personal lives, while simultaneously pushing forward technological innovation both at his company and within the larger technology sector. His keynote also specifically addressed Intel’s new initiatives in the VR space. “Data is going to introduce social and economic changes that we see perhaps once or twice in a century,” Krzanich said. “We not only find data everywhere today, but it will be the creative force behind the innovations of the future. Data is going to redefine how we experience life – in our work, in our homes,

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2018, Augmented Reality (AR), Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Google, Hardware, Mixed Reality (MR), News, Samsung, Smartphones, Sport, Virtual Reality (VR)

CES: NextVR announces realism-boosting upgrades

NextVR, a leading provider of systems for broadcasting live sports and music events in virtual reality, yesterday previewed several upgrades to its technology platform. The announcement was made in conjunction with the opening of CES 2018 in Las Vegas. In what was billed as a “sneak peek,” NextVR unveiled three major initiatives: introducing Six Degrees of Freedom (6DoF) technology; improving fidelity of transmitted content; and adding augmented reality to their platform. NextVR is currently compatible with the Samsung Gear VR headset or Google Daydream View combined with an appropriate smartphone, PlayStation VR, or Windows Mixed Reality system. “VR is the most demanding visual medium ever

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3D, Amazon, Augmented Reality (AR), CPU, Graphics, Hardware, HTC, Internet, Mobile Computing, News, Virtual Reality (VR)

Smartphones gain PC-strength VR capabilities via new codec

NGCodec, a company that specializes in developing algorithms, silicon logic and FPGA implementations for cloud video processing, this week announced the availability of their potentially transformative cloud-based encoding technologies via the Amazon AWS Marketplace. The company’s RealityCodec acts as a low-delay H.265/HEVC encoder, which allows much of the processing load of VR video streams to be shifted into the cloud. The codec also boasts sufficiently low latency that it can reliably deliver VR streams to untethered, mobile, VR head-mounted displays. “We have worked diligently to bring our advanced video codecs to the Amazon Cloud and to demonstrate the potential for cloud media and virtual reality,”

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Amazon, Augmented Reality (AR), News

Amazon patent reflects another push into 1.7 trillion dollar industry

A patent issued on the first business day of the new year may herald a breakthrough in online fashion retailing. US Patent 9,858,719 was Issued on January 2nd to Amazon Services Inc. It suggests the company is developing an augmented reality-type system consisting of a mirror, display and camera combination that allows individuals to virtually preview the look of clothing prior to purchase, and to do so while also virtualizing their locale. The invention, as described, appears to go a long way towards solving the many issues pertaining to look and fit that tend to plague the purchase of fashion items online. Currently, these challenges

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Education, News, VR World

VR blindness simulator accurately represents vision loss

Let’s face it: chances are if you’re reading this that you aren’t blind. If you are blind, you may be reading this via a screen reader or another application. In 2015, 2.3% of American adults were reported to have a visual disability. While this ranges from outright blindness to other issues, this translates to a not-insignificant amount of the population suffering from visual impairment. If you have perfectly-good eyesight and have ever wanted to place yourself in their shoes, now you can. Davis Vision has put out a Vision Loss Simulator which can be operated on a desktop web browser, a mobile 360-degree experience or

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Education, News, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

VR used to educate on Australian bushfires

In Australia, authorities have released a VR experience designed to educate citizens about the dangers of bushfires. “Bushfires”, for the non-Aussies out there, are essentially just wildfires. However, most of Australia is covered by forest (the bush), and this, combined with high temperatures, means that bushfires are a very present safety concern for Australians. However, some people may not be experienced with bushfires or know what to do when they happen. To combat this, authorities released a Bushfire Virtual Reality Experience on Facebook to provide a simulated version of a bushfire and to walk viewers through three different scenarios. While you could probably accomplish the

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AMD, ARM, Breaking, Intel, News, Technology Security, VR World

Intel’s Greatest Mistake: Meltdown, Spectre and Why Your CPU Is In Danger

To start the New Year, two major new hardware exploits have been publicized. And people are going nuts. Since the news of these exploits has come out, AMD stock has skyrocketed while Intel’s has dipped significantly. PC hardware enthusiasts everywhere are running around screaming, and if you aren’t hyper-tuned into the world of hardware you may not understand why. Let us break it down for you. What’s happening? Two new hardware-based exploits have been publicized: Meltdown and Spectre. While both issues can be mitigated, it may be impossible to fix them outright without fundamental changes in hardware architecture from manufacturers. What is Meltdown? Meltdown is an attack

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News, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Drop Coming Soon To Rift And Mixed Reality

Drop is a 360-degree VR environment that allows people to browse the web in VR. The main appeal of the program is the ability to organize different browser windows and tabs in a 3D environment. This stands in contrast to vanilla web browsing on a PC or tablet, offering only a 2D plane for a few tabs. Depending on resolution and screen real estate, this usually means that only 2-4 tabs can comfortably be used at once. According to Russel Ladson, Drop Software’s CEO, users spend an average of 26 minutes in Drop. Most of these users are also people who use VR for six or

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Hardware, News, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Kopin Bringing Their OLED Microdisplays To VR/AR Headsets

A long time ago, the machine you’re using to read this article would’ve been large enough to fill an entire room. Moore’s Law dictates that as time goes on, processing power increases and physical size decreases. Just as this applies to the smartphone in your hand or the PC on your desk, this also applies to Virtual Reality headsets and display technologies. Meet Kopin. Kopin manufactures what they call OLED microdisplays. These are essentially tiny OLED screens with huge resolution numbers. Their “Lightning” microdisplays, for instance, boast 2048 x 2048 resolution (per eye) at a 120 Hz refresh rate. This is well beyond the HTC

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Hardware, News, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Scanning Solution Creates VR Avatars In Ten Minutes

ICSpace is a virtual fitness environment from researchers at the Bielefeld University’s Cluster of Excellence Cognitive Interaction Technology. (Or CITEC for short.) As a blend of VR and AR technologies focused on fitness, ICSpace aims for realism to accomplish its goals. The most interesting part of ICSpace, however, is how it captures virtual avatars. Virtual avatars are nothing new to gamers, and are common in apps like VRChat as well- but more often than not, these avatars have little resemblance to their real counterparts. ICSpace changes that by using a setup of 40 DSLR cameras to photograph the user from all angles. Using these photographs, ICSpace can

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News, VR World

Virtual Reality Being Used To Rehabilitate Prisoners In Colorado

Just before the turn of the New Year, VICE News visited the Fremont Correctional Facility in Colorado to interview six inmates. These inmates are a part of an early-release program for people who were sentenced as juveniles and have served twenty or more years of their sentence. The length of these sentences, alongside the age of the convicted, means that these inmates may not be prepared to deal with the modern world. Smartphones, for instance, are a staple of modern life. For a teenager convicted in the 80s or 90s, however, devices like that are completely alien. Even less technically-advanced tasks, like doing laundry at

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Gaming, Mixed Reality (MR), News, VR World, Windows

Bigscreen coming to Windows Mixed Reality

For the uninitiated, Bigscreen is a virtual desktop application for VR headsets. It originally launched for the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift as a desktop environment for those headsets, and as of the turn of the New Year, Bigscreen is now available on Windows Mixed Reality headsets. Bigscreen coming to Windows MR headsets is good news for the platform. While Windows Mixed Reality does have SteamVR support, the platform still has a way to go to become a true competitor to the HTC Vive or the Oculus Rift. Bigscreen porting their application to Mixed Reality is a good sign, though, and with any luck, many other

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Education, Google, News, VR World

Google bringing 1 million VR expeditions to Middle Eastern students

It looks like nothing is immune to the spread of virtual reality. Education certainly isn’t, and as part of Google’s push for VR in education, the company is bringing its “VR Expeditions” to students in the Middle East. VR Expeditions allow virtual tours of locations all around the world, which provides a more interactive learning experience for students. To make this possible, Google is partnering with Munfarid, a VR/AR-centric Middle Eastern company. The partnership between the two has produced the VRXOne kit, which includes headsets for students and a tablet for instructors to control the experience. With the help of Google Expeditions, Munfarid plans to

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Entertainment, Gaming, News, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Meet The Rift, An AR/VR Adventure Park

The Rift is an AR/VR Adventure Park, based in Malaysia. It’s a large, indoors area offering all kinds of different augmented reality and virtual reality installations, from basic VR gaming installations to things a little more advanced. For instance, an AR rock-climbing game and Zero Latency, a free-roaming VR shooter. What’s on offer at The Rift may be reminiscent of a VR arcade (like the one I interviewed an owner in), and it even offers a few standard arcade titles. Where it sets itself apart is in its sheer size and number of attractions, many of which utilize different AR and VR technologies. There’s a

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Hardware, News, VR World, Wearables

Hardlight VR Shows Off Mark III Haptic Vest

Hardlight VR is a company focused on making their Hardlight suit a reality. The Hardlight suit is essentially a suit that can be worn over your torso and arms to provide full haptic feedback in accordance with the games you’re playing, as well as detailed arm tracking. When used alongside VR motion controllers and a full head-tracking headset like the Vive, this pretty much brings your entire upper body into VR, sensation included. Recently, Hardlight VR showed off a Mark III version of their Hardlight suit. The Mark III drops the price of the Hardlight suit down to $300 from $630. How exactly they managed

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Augmented Reality (AR), News, VR World

New Pico Neo VR Headset With Vive Wave Support Coming Soon

The original Pico Neo headset was, well, pretty forgettable. It was an Android gaming-centric VR headset that bundled all of its hardware into a small, SNES-esque gamepad, and decent tech specs. It released in 2016 to little fanfare, but now the Pico Neo is making a comeback with a truly standalone VR headset. The new Pico Neo comes with the same Snapdragon 835 chipset, but now has full head tracking and is compatible with Vive Wave, like the upcoming HTC Vive Focus. In addition to Vive Wave/Viveport support, the Neo headset will also have access to the Pico Store to download VR games and applications. Interestingly,

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Education, News, VR World

Guangzhou Zoo Introducing Virtual Reality For New Year’s

The Guangzhou Zoo is the largest of its kind in South China, and is a prominent attraction for locals and tourists alike. There’s plenty to be seen at the Guangzhou Zoo, but among its most popular attractions are its pandas. Just like museums are taking advantage of emerging technologies, the Guangzhou Zoo is looking to embrace Virtual Reality in the coming days. Guangzhou Zoo has been open for 60 years now, but even at their age it’s never too late to introduce new technology. On January 1st, 2018, Guangzhou Zoo will be introducing Virtual Reality to its zoo. Specifically, this will manifest in the form of

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News, Virtual Reality (VR)

Lenovo Mirage Solo VR Headset Seen In FCC Filings, Powered By Daydream

Remember when HTC canceled their plans for a Daydream headset in favor of the Vive Focus? Fortunately for Google, it looks like not everyone is splitting from the pack: Lenovo‘s VR headset is still right around the corner, and it looks like it will also be powered by Daydream. This headset is called the Lenovo Mirage Solo, and comes bundled with a standard Daydream VR controller. As revealed by FCC filings uncovered by LetsGoDigital, the Mirage Solo is thoroughly revealed as a Daydream VR headset boasting a 4000mAh battery, support for various Wi-Fi bands (including 5.8 GHz) and support for Bluetooth 5.0. Unfortunately, there’s not

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Augmented Reality (AR), Gaming, iOS, Mobile, News, VR World

Augmented Reality FPS WAR of the AI releases on iOS

Trailblazing VR is a startup company focused on pushing forward women in the VR/AR development. Their first game is War of the AI, developed using Apple’s ARKit tools (like the LEGO game we covered a while back) and available for free on iOS. While War of the AI has a somewhat ‘dull’ name, what it does – is quite impressive. War of the AI is a first-person shooter that’s playable in augmented reality, which has been done before (with the help of peripherals, e.g. Father.io), but not quite like this. War of the AI doesn’t require any extra peripherals, and utilizing ARKit’s features, enables a full

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Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, Companies, Cryptocurrency, Fintech, News, Technology Security

BeeChat, First Blockchain Based Messenger with Crypto Wallet

The Crypto boom seems to be at an all-time high with the Bitcoin market recovering from the recent dip. However, there is a new thing coming. BeeChat is a blockchain based messenger and also, a cryptocurrency community. Built using proprietary distributed technology with servers implemented around the world, BeeChat offers reliable communication in an ever-changing cryptocurrency landscape. After going live in October, this network has captured millions of users around the world and currently supports hundreds of millions of messages per day on its network. It also supports over 10 digital currencies, provides messaging and communications services, cryptocurrency discussions and groups, cryptocurrency wallet, and industry

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