philip lelyveld The world of entertainment technology

15Feb/18Off

Virtual-reality field trips give Brooklyn students advanced adventure

vr-field-tripThe effect on learning, he said, is to improve interest, understanding and recall.

It's unknown how many classrooms have or will adopt the technology, but experts say it's still relatively rare. While individual headsets that require a user's phone can cost as little as $20 or $30, systems and software for classes run into the thousands of dollars. Early complaints about a lack of good software are fading as more companies enter the market, but the rules for use haven't necessarily caught up to the technology.

In New York, for example, simulated lab experiments don't count toward the state's hands-on lab time requirements.

Even so, experts say, the sciences are an area where virtual reality, especially enhanced to let users manipulate their surroundings, holds particular promise for classrooms.

"The biggest hindrance, I think, is going to be the quality of that experience, how closely it mimics the physical world," said David Evans, executive director of the National Science Teachers Association.

But, he said, "the ability to do dangerous things, the ability to run many, many more cases in a simulation space as opposed to the real physical space represents a huge learning opportunity."

See the full story here: http://www.brooklyneagle.com/articles/2018/2/14/virtual-reality-field-trips-give-brooklyn-students-advanced-adventure

15Feb/18Off

Japanese tour firm offers virtual reality holidays – with a first-class seat

3500[PhilNote: dinner theatre 2.0]

Fasten your seatbelts for a flight departing to Paris – and never leave the ground.

That’s exactly what 12 passengers did at First Airlines in central Tokyo this week, where they relaxed in first and business-class seats and were served four-course dinners, before immersing themselves in 360-degree virtual reality (VR) tours of the City of Light’s sights.

At 6,600 yen ($62), a fraction of the cost of an actual trip overseas, it’s easy to see why First Airline’s two-hour “flights” to Paris, Rome, Hawaii and New York have been fully booked since the company opened in 2016.

“We have lots of elderly customers who want to go overseas but are not able to easily, given their physical limitations,” Abe said, explaining that the majority of First Airlines’ customers are older Japanese from around the country.

Abe added that domestic flights around Japan would be added soon, with meals highlighting the region’s cuisine.

See the full story here: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/feb/15/japanese-tour-firm-offers-virtual-reality-holidays-with-a-first-class-seat

15Feb/18Off

Magic Leap, NBA and Turner Sports Partner for Future AR App

Magic_Leap_LogoAR startup Magic Leap has partnered with the NBA and its broadcast partner Turner Sports to allow some users to watch some NBA content with the Magic Leap headset, once it is released. People wearing the headset will see multiple screens overlaid on the real world; they will be able to “pin” those screens to a wall or watch them as they walk around. Initially, live NBA games will not be available. As Magic Leap readies its headsets for sale, its chief executive says the cheapest will be the price of a high-end smartphone.

Recode reports that, according to NBA senior vice president of global media distribution Jeff Marsilio, “eventually, the game could be available streaming on your coffee table as though you were a giant looking into the arena from above.” “Those are some ideas, those are things that we’re working towards,” he said. “[They’re] not quite ready, but actually more possible than you might think.”

Magic Leap says it is using “Digital Lightfield” technology, but TechCrunch opines that, “we still don’t actually know what that means and whether they are using true light field tech or something that can simply fake it.”

See the full story here: http://www.etcentric.org/magic-leap-nba-and-turner-sports-partner-for-future-ar-app/

14Feb/18Off

Robert Rodriguez preps VR action series ‘The Limit’

Director Robert Rodriguez and Actress Michelle Rodriguez attend the Austin Screening of "Machete" at The Paramount Theater on September 2, 2010 in Austin, Texas.

Director Robert Rodriguez and Actress Michelle Rodriguez attend the Austin Screening of "Machete" at The Paramount Theater on September 2, 2010 in Austin, Texas.

Director Robert Rodriguez has been teasing a virtual reality video project for a while, and now it's clear just what it entails. He's partnering with STXon The Limit, a short-form VR action series starring long-time collaborator Michelle Rodriguez as a "genetically enhanced weapon of mass destruction" bent on destroying her creators.

The Limit will premiere sometime in mid-2018 on STX's upcoming VR 'channel' Surreal as an app for headsets.

...he's experimenting with VR video production while the format is still young, but has grown just enough to start reaching the mainstream.

See the full story here:https://www.engadget.com/2018/02/14/robert-rodriguez-vr-action-series/

14Feb/18Off

Why does the NPR station have so much propaganda against Trump?

14Feb/18Off

MIT’s low power encryption chip could make IoT devices more secure

dims-5MIT is working on a new chip, however, to perform this sort of public-key encryption that only uses 1/400 as much power as a software solution would. In addition, the chip uses about 1/10 as much memory and executes processes 500 times as fast.

MIT researchers used a technique called elliptic-curve encryption, which relies on a mathematical function to secure transactions. The new chip sets itself apart by being able to handle any kind of elliptic curve, which, in addition to low power use and a high speed of computation, makes it much more useful as an encryption solution.

See the complete story here: https://www.engadget.com/2018/02/13/mit-low-power-encryption-chip-internet-of-things-secure/

14Feb/18Off

App combines virtual reality with personalized psychotherapy

fea-VR-psychotherapy-appHere’s how the app works:

  • Patients use their smartphones to access the app. They can see and hear the therapist, but can also look around the therapist’s room, which was filmed using a virtual reality camera.
  • During a session, the therapist might assign the patient a task, such as completing a questionnaire about anxiety levels.
  • The patient completes the in-app questionnaire. The answers dictate which video of the therapist plays next.
    Later, the therapist might suggest a mindfulness exercise in which the patient is asked to imagine being in a relaxing environment, such as a beach.
  • The patient is then shown environmental photographs and asked to select a preference. Earlier in the module, the patient was able to identify personal preferences for calming music.
  • The app’s algorithms then serve up the patient’s preferred 3D environment (a beach, complete with the sound of waves) and accompanying music. Meanwhile, the virtual therapist talks the patient through the mindfulness exercise.
    The next time the patient uses the app for an on-demand therapy session, the previous answers along with visual and aural preferences will be taken into account.

Evidence-based psychotherapeutic practices? Check.

Aesthetically pleasing and immersive video and music? Check.

Built-in algorithms that deliver personalized content based on your needs and preferences? Check.

See the full story here: http://www.rochester.edu/newscenter/intersections-app-combines-virtual-reality-personalized-psychotherapy-cognitive-behavioral-therapy-296922/

14Feb/18Off

Why IoT Finally Makes Augmented Reality Important

Location-based-services-augmented-reality-mapVolumetric Geofencing and Geotagging

As the internet of things connects us more closely with our location, it also provides opportunities for increased privacy and protection. Augmented reality development is now looking at ways to protect against terrorism: A statement from the Swedish governmentexplains that they are seeking a “technical solution to enable only authorized vehicles to be driven within a geographically defined area.”

See the full story here: https://mutualmobile.com/posts/why-iot-finally-makes-augmented-reality-important

13Feb/18Off

Tech’s Ethical ‘Dark Side’: Harvard, Stanford and Others Want to Address It

03TECHETHICS-3-master675This semester, Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are jointly offering a new course on the ethics and regulation of artificial intelligence. The University of Texas at Austin just introduced a course titled “Ethical Foundations of Computer Science” — with the idea of eventually requiring it for all computer science majors.

And at Stanford University, the academic heart of the industry, three professors and a research fellow are developing a computer science ethics course for next year. They hope several hundred students will enroll.

The idea is to train the next generation of technologists and policymakers to consider the ramifications of innovations — like autonomous weapons or self-driving cars — before those products go on sale.

“Technology is not neutral,” said Professor Sahami, who formerly worked at Google as a senior research scientist. “The choices that get made in building technology then have social ramifications.”

“It was really focused on trying to help them understand what in their everyday practice as a data scientist they are likely to confront, and to help them think through those challenges more systematically,” said Solon Barocas, an assistant professor in information science who taught the course.

The curriculum also covers the spread of algorithmic risk scores that use data — like whether a person was ever suspended from school, or how many of his or her friends have arrest records — to forecast whether someone is likely to commit a crime.

See the full story here: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/12/business/computer-science-ethics-courses.html

13Feb/18Off

HADO – Futuristic AR eSports Tournament Coming To USA

the HADO WORLD CUP AR eSports tournament is finally making its way stateside. The AR team sports uses a headset running an iPhone 6s, a motion sensor secured to the wrist, as well as several AR trackers. This lets players run, jump, and weave their way throughout the designated battlefield, generating points by physically tossing “energy balls” at opposing players.

The team that scores the most during the allotted time while simultaneously dodging incoming fire via holographic power shields wins. Users can play by themselves, but the experience truly shines when you team up with 1-2 buddies and duke it out in a PvP team battle.

HADO KART, launching later this month. The all new location-based AR experience pits 3-8 friends against each other in a fast-paced race against time.

See the full story here: http://www.virtualrealitypulse.com/edition/daily-apple-unity-2018-02-11?open-article-id=7822243&article-title=futuristic-ar-esports-tournament-coming-to-usa&blog-domain=vrscout.com&blog-title=vrscout