Bay Area: Join us at AR AppShow (1/23)

VRARA members, contact us for a discount code 

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VRARA SF has partnered with next month's Augmented Reality AppShow. Join us 1/23 for an evening of networking and live demos of ARkit and ARCore apps that are in development. That will give us all a sneak peek at the AR innovation in the pipeline.

The conference organizers are also looking for apps to showcase, in case you're working on one. Apply here and contact us for discount code to attend. We hope to see you there.

More from the event organizers:

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On November 10th, 2009, 10 mobile apps including Dropbox were showcased at the first ever AppShow at the flagship Apple Store in downtown San Francisco.  Since then over 170 iPhone, iPad, and Android apps have presented or launched at 18 AppShows, in 4 cities.  Many of these apps have gone on to become household names like Uber and Waze which both launched at the SF AppShow.   

With Apple's launch of ARKit and Google's launch of ARCore, app developers around the world have started a whole new innovation cycle to show the public what can be done with this amazing new augmented reality technology on mobile phones.  Since ARKit's launch in September, apps using this platform have already been installed 3 Million times.  More than ever these apps need to be seen live, in order for their full utility to be understood.  Join us for 10 rapid fire augmented reality app demos in an hour, by the people who created them.  Learn more about AR technology and how it could be applied to your business.

If you're building a great app or know of one, apply to present at http://appshow.com/apply  We are also looking for sponsors and anyone interested in helping out with the event.

The AppShow is the premier App event -- We discover and break the hottest apps.

Past presenters have been featured in the New York Times, BBC, CNN, and the iTunes App Store home page after appearing in the SF AppShow!

- Cocktails, appetizers, and networking. 6:00pm - 7 pm.

- Join the live studio audience for the SF AppShow broadcast.  Our host will check out hot apps, interview their developers and take your questions from the stage. Show starts at 7pm.

See newsworthy new apps, get insight from app developers, find unrecognized app gems. Space is limited, seats available on a first come basis.

Register and get more information here

Virtual Reality: The Next Generation Of Education, Learning and Training

Published by Forbes 

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When people hear about virtual reality (VR), images of a person wearing a headset and holding a gaming console usually come to mind. However, for the education sector, VR is an opportunity to finally connect with both learners and teachers in a novel and meaningful way. For example, EON Reality collaborated with Oral Roberts University to create the Global Learning Center, a dedicated facility for augmented and virtual learning. 

As the global executive director of the global VR/AR Association, I've watched our 3,900-plus registered companies and our Education Committee and Training Committee work on best practices, guidelines and standards to accelerate the VR/AR industry for all, one committee in particular being devoted to education and training.

Today, VR can enable experiential learning by simulating real-world environments. Students can test their skills, record their work and interact with experts all within VR. Students have responded overwhelmingly positively to active learner engagement. A recent study shows that "93 percent of teachers say their students would be excited to use virtual reality and 83 percent say that virtual reality might help improve learning outcomes." This points to a universal trend as these students will soon enter universities and then the workforce, where job training scenarios will become the new classroom.

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For visual learners and individuals with learning challenges, VR provides an alternative medium to meet their needs. Likewise, educators see increased engagement levels and improved test scores across the board with VR education programs. Hands-on learning techniques like VR education directly contribute to increased cognitive memory.

The benefits of incorporating VR/AR tech into educational experiences include better, more immediate engagement and the opportunity for learners to "feel" the experiences and better remember and express what they learned. A student can experience what was not possible to experience before and become better prepared for when such experiences occur in the real world.

The basic functionality of VR in education is to bring learning to life via a virtual environment. The more a learner is able to participate in life-like engagement, the easier it is to personally feel a connection to the subject material, making it easier for application and retention of the subject matter.

The most popular trends in VR learning include enterprise and education. In enterprise, Walmart is using VR to help train its employees on topics like management and customer service. Soon, all 200 of the company's U.S. training centers will use VR instruction to educate the estimated 150,000 employees going through the program annually.

In education, there's Star Chart, an iOS and Android app with over 20 million users that brings the universe a little closer. Users learn about astronomy by pointing their phones to the sky at night and utilize other features to learn about planets and space discovery.

It’s important to pay attention to this trend and adopt VR solutions in your organization to educate employees in new and better ways and teach students with more engaging and effective tools. However, like many new technologies before it, awareness is the first barrier to entry followed by cost and content.

Many are still not aware of VR training solutions that are proving to be effective. At The VR/AR Association we are doing our part to promote the industry and help organizations locate the best VR solutions for their use case. Meanwhile, quality VR headsets come at around $399 (already down from $599 ore more just a few months ago). Cost is steadily declining our research points to $199 being the sweet spot price point for “mass adoption.” Finally, better content — specific for each use case — is needed and is being created for enterprise use cases and educational curriculums.

In 2018 we will see the costs decrease, better content emerge and more awareness spread, which will propel the VR/AR education market to high growth.

Ultimately, VR in education will revolutionize not only how people learn but how they interact with real-world applications of what they have been taught. Imagine medical students performing an operation or geography students really seeing where and what Kathmandu is. The world just opens up to a rich abundance of possibilities.

Source: Forbes

The first Mixed Reality and Blockchain Conference in New York

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Dec. 12, 2017 / PRZen / NEW YORK -- Arcona, a new project striving to create an AR layer on the Earth's surface, is hosting BlockchainMix, the first New York area event to focus on how blockchain technology is shaping mixed reality.

The event is being supported by the VR/AR Association, a global community of the best minds in virtual and augmented reality with chapters in major cities around the world.

The industry's leading experts and investors will take part in the discussion. Here is a list of confirmed participants:

  • Dana Farbo, AR/VR/blockchain expert, COO at Augmate, a platform for smart glasses and other wearable devices
  • George Popescu, CEO and co-founder of Lampix, an AR technology platform and editor-in-chief at Lending Times
  • Catherine Barba, tech entrepreneur, investor, founder of PEPS Lab, a retail innovation center
  • Chris Dannen, managing partner at Iterative Capital Management, an alternative investment fund specializing in cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology
  • James Haft, entrepreneur, investor, co-founder of Startup Hub NYC, founder and managing partner at Pacific Alliance
  • Michael Mazier, co-founder of LendingCalc, a direct platform for institutional investor

The event will take place at Rise NYC on December 15. To register, please click HERE.

All event participants will automatically be entered in a drawing for a free piece of augmented reality land in Soho, NYC.

The discussion is part of the Blockchain conference organized by the Starta accelerator.

Checkout what our Storytelling Committee will Present during our Online Conference in Jan

Preview of what our Storytelling speakers will be presenting in January as part of our VR/AR Association Online Conference with 1000+ people attending and 50+ speakers. 

VR for Social Good - Davar Ardalan and Ben Kreimer, SecondMuse

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Presentation: From the United Nations, to the World Bank and the Australian Aid program, development agencies are among the first out of the gate that have been experimenting with immersive VR/AR technologies. The purpose has been to build empathy and educate local communities as they work to improve the challenging environments surrounding them. Veteran NPR News journalist Davar Ardalan of SecondMuse and storytelling technologist Ben Kreimer talk about ways emerging technologies can be accessed and leveraged by individuals in developing nations to inspire positive change, and help create bridges between otherwise disconnected human experiences.

Davar Ardalan is director of Storytelling and Engagement at SecondMuse with extensive expertise in social engagement and new technologies. In 2017, she designed and implemented an immersive storytelling project around healthy eating in Tonga and Fiji funded by the innovationXchange of the Australian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The pilots will launch in 2018 and are geared towards tackling malnutrition and bringing back pride to traditional diets via VR, gamification and the future integration of AI. As an award-winning journalist for over two decades at NPR News, Ardalan’s real-time storytelling campaigns cultivated thought leaders across platforms and reached millions on Twitter and Facebook. Ardalan is a contributor to HuffPost, co-chairs the Stories and Audiences Committee of the VR/AR Association, and has been recognized with a 2017 NASA Team Leadership award for Space Apps, a Gracie Award from the American Women in Radio and Television and a shout-out in the popular comic strip Zippy.

Ben Kreimer is a Storytelling Technologist specializing in storytelling with drones, virtual reality, 360o° video, 3D reconstructions, and open source hardware sensor platforms. Ben introduced 360o video to BuzzFeed as the first fellow in their San Francisco based Open Lab, a media R&D space. He is also an adviser for the Drone Journalism Lab and African skyCAM, and has worked with academic institutions and organizations including Columbia’s Tow Center for Digital Journalism, Times of India, CCTV Africa, the African Wildlife Foundation, M.S. University of Baroda, and Antiochia ad Cragum Archaeological Research Project in Turkey.

Cinematic VR Documentary - Michael Owen, MediaCombo

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Presentation: Michael Owen will discuss his firm, MediaCombo’s, recent AR and VR projects. These include an AR Tour for the Morgan Library and Museum in New York and a cinematic VR documentary about Lake Baikal in Siberia, the oldest, deepest, most voluminous body of liquid fresh water on earth.

Michael Owen is a principal at MediaCombo and producer of virtual and augmented reality experiences. Michael has been making documentaries, music videos, TV commercials and programs for digital platforms for over 30 years. Clients include the U.S. State Department, the Brooklyn Navy Yard, Google Expeditions, the American Museum of Natural History, Amnesty International, the Museum of Modern Art, Prudential, Pfizer among many other clients and agencies.

Using AR as a Communication Tool for Climate Change - Micah Taylor, University of Georgia

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Presentation: Micah Taylor, along with Brian Orland, professor of Geo-Design, and others from the University of Georgia are interested in using AR as part of a mobile application to communicate historical, cultural, and Environmental elements on the Coastal Georgia landscape to visitors and residents. AR will be used for visualizing largely unseen environmental effects of climate change based on historical and predicted data. This visualization is one component of a larger application that also provides narration to drivers and gathers feedback on what the individual 'values' in the landscape given the new information.

Micah Taylor is a first year PhD student at the University of Georgia's College of Environmental Design. His research interest are emerging technologies in environmental design and citizen engagement in planning. Past projects include using VR and AR for visualization of planning scenarios in Nashville, Tennessee. He comes from a strong GIS and Geo-Design background, and hopes to pursue this proposed project in the following semesters. 

How to Create Engaging 360 Video VR Experiences - George Egbuonu, VR eCards

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Presentation Topic: How to Create Engaging 360 Video VR Experiences. As we enter into the VR age with 360 videos, those that discover how to create amazing 360 videos and VR experiences will be able to differentiate themselves with highly desirable content creators.

George Egbuonu is the founder of VR eCards marketplace that provides you a WebVR Editor to create and share amazing 360 video experiences without any technical skills required.  The 360 videos you create can then be shared privately or published on the marketplace as VR Ecards for other users to personalize. Prior to founding VR eCards, he was the CEO of Flat Pyramid - A marketplace for 3d model files.   He holds a Mechanical Engineering degree and Masters in Business Administration (MBA).

State of the Storytelling in Cinematic VR - Alina Mikhaleva, SPHERICA

 
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Presentation: Alina Mikhaleva will share Spherica studio’s assessment on the state and current limitations for storytellers in cinematic VR, and discuss her studio’s recent projects that have experimented with making the 360 VR environment a more compelling space for creators. Spherica has been an innovator in the VR space for more than two years, constantly pushing the limits of what’s possible in VR filmmaking. In 2015, Spherica was the first studio to introduce fully stabilized camera movement that provides absolute comfort for the viewers. Alina will share the latest developments in the field as well as practical advice on how the freedom to move the camera can enhance VR storytelling techniques and make 360 experiences more compelling. Alina will also showcase some of the latest experiments in using camera movement in POV experiences to enhance the feeling of immersion and the sense of presence for viewers.  

After ten years of successful career in broadcast media, Alina Mikhaleva moved to lead a VR startup Spherica. Spherica is an independent VR production studio based in Los Angeles. Founded by a small team of VR enthusiasts, Spherica aims to create truly engaging cinematic VR experiences for viewers worldwide. Spherica's proprietary technology demonstrates to the industry professionals the potential of virtual reality filmmaking when it is freed from the limitations of a static camera. Spherica has been working in VR industry with clients including HBO, CBS, RYOT, and many others on both fiction and non-fiction content, as well as developing and creating original VR content. 

 

Storytelling Beyond the First-Person Perspective in VR - Christian Haniszewski, Hack and Paint

Presentation: As it stands, storytelling in VR is still in its infancy.  What often happens when a new medium emerges is content creators initially try to bridge the gap between the new and familiar by applying existing techniques towards the new.  Examining how filmmakers point cameras on stage to film the action of scenes, we are now applying the same existing techniques to photos and videos hoping to find relevance in the early stages of VR  However, as time and technologies progress, we will discover new innovative ways of storytelling unique to the medium of VR.  VR offers a groundbreaking level of immersion, choice, and viewer control that sets it apart from any medium before it- opening doors to vast uncharted potential in the future of storytelling.  I’m excited to explore storytelling beyond the obvious first-person perspective in VR.  At Hack and Paint, we are currently experimenting with putting VR viewers in the director’s seat, giving them the potential to switch between cameras themselves and empowering them to move through our story from new unique perspectives.

Christian Haniszewski is currently one of the founding partners at Hack and Paint, but prior to that, he has been working for over a decade, prominently in the Feature Animation and VFX industry including; Pixar, Blue Sky Studios, Framestore, Aardman Nathan Love, and 4mm Games. He’s credited for his incredible work on globally recognized films: “Brave”, “Monsters University”, “Epic”, “Rio 2", “Peanuts”, “Ice Age 5", “Ferdinand”, and “Salt” -just to name a few. In 2009, Christian graduated from the School of Visual Arts with a BFA in Computer Animation and Visual Effects.

 

Kathy Bisbee

Presentation: Kathy will share her experiences creating VR/AR storytelling content for the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA), partnering on immersive news stories with the Boston Globe, and building an international movement for Community VR to grow the VR/AR industry from the grassroots up, using community-based storytelling, artist residencies, partnerships with government, libraries, non-profits, schools, and storytellers to provide increased accessibility, content, and training in VR/AR.

Kathy Bisbee is the executive director of Brookline Interactive Group (BIG), a community media arts center, and the co-founder/director of the Public VR Lab, the first publicly-funded Community VR organization in the U.S. Kathy is an award-winning, multidisciplinary storyteller; producing international documentary films, collaborating on immersive news stories with the STAT journalism team at the Boston Globe, and creating customized VR global air pollution project for the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Recently she presented on two panels to advocate the use of VR & Storytelling to world leaders at the third UN Environment Assembly (UNEA) event in Nairobi, Kenya on Art, Storytelling & Creating Change, and on Can Virtual Reality Help Save Reality?

 

Perspective is vital to effective immersive storytelling -  Chris Bedyk, Perspective Films

Presentation: Since 2013, Chris has been developing 360˚ cameras, production gear and immersive experiences with a goal to help connect people to each other, the planet and to themselves. His focus has always been to help increase human advancement by producing experiential content for the sports, health, education and entertainment industries. Immersive technology has the potential to be the most effective and powerful story telling medium humans have ever seen. At the peak, our senses can be stimulated with such resonance, transparency and realism that our brain is tricked into believing an experience  is real. The level of presence is relative to the quality and quantity of the stimulation.The body will resonate and provide feedback to the experience that can be physical, mental, biochemical and maybe even spiritual. Camera resolution, placement, and height are some of the key factors creators need to consider when retelling or capturing a live story in an immersive canvas. Chris will discuss what he has learned over the years producing content for the Vancouver Canucks, BC Lions and his travel series VR Wonders of The World. Hopefully, this talk can provide a deep insight for creators to go beyond the spectacle of immersive technology and further understand how contextual perspective is the potential gateway to enhancing a stories impact on the viewer.

Chris Bedyk is a Cinematographer, Immersive Filmmaker, Teacher, and CEO of Perspective Films. Since 2000, he has worked on every type of TV / Film production as a traditional Camera Operator. In 2013, he started developing immersive production gear and experimenting with the technology. After attending the Oculus conference in 2014 and 2015 he started the transition from traditional to immersive storytelling. In 2016, he helped create the Vancouver Canucks first 360˚ experience and a key partner in establishing the BC Lions EXP app which captured behind the scenes moments on and off the field during the 2017 season. His immersive series VR Wonders of the World was created for the launch of the Idealens headset and received "Official Selection" at the 2017 Vancouver VR film festival. It is currently being distributed with JauntVR. In 2016, he established Mastering360 which provides workshops and courses for future 360˚ filmmakers.

More added soon. 

ETSI Premieres New Augmented Reality Group with VRARA for 5G Networks Standards

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Join our 5G Networks Industry Committee here

ETSI premieres new augmented reality group

Rolling into the augmented reality (AR) space, the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) launched a new Industry Specification Group called Augmented Reality Framework (ISG ARF) yesterday. The purpose of the group is to define a framework for the interoperability of AR applications and services, thereby thwarting market fragmentation and allowing players to provide part of an overall AR solution.

ETSI is an organization responsible for developing globally-applicable standards for information and communications technologies, including radio, broadcast and web devices. AR applications like Pokemon Go provide a digitally enhanced representation of the world with texts and images graphed on. According to the 2017 Augmented/Virtual Reality Report, the AR market is expected to be worth $83 billion by 2021.

Currently, there are a plethora of standards that can be used in the development and deployment of AR applications and services. Unfortunately, interoperability gaps exist in the AR value chain. More work needs to be done to determine the best practices for using existing international standards. That is why ISG ARF was developed.

The group held its first meeting on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1, electing Muriel Deschanel from b<>com as chair of the group and Ralf Schäfer from Fraunhofer HHI as vice chair. The group will begin with a systematic review of AR use case requirements and challenges, and develop a framework for the interoperability of AR applications and services.

“There are huge differences in AR applications but mapping digital information with the real world implies the use of a set of common components offering functionalities such as tracking, registration, pose estimation, localization, 3D reconstruction or data injection. The development of such a framework will allow components from different providers to interoperate through the defined interfaces,” said Deschanel. “This will in turn avoid the creation of vertical siloes and market fragmentation and enable players in the eco-system to offer parts of an overall AR solution.”

ETSI isn’t alone in developing standards for the AR industry. The organization announced last month that the Virtual Reality/Augmented Reality Association (VRARA) signed a letter of intent to collaborate on interactive VR and AR technologies delivered over budding 5G networks and hosted on Multi-access Edge Computing sites. Participation in ISG ARF is open to ETSI members and non-member organizations. The next ISG ARF meeting will be held Feb. 1 and 2 next year in Berlin.

Source

Exploring Virtual Reality as a Forensic Tool Criminal Justice

By Eduardo Neeter, Principal, FactualVR, Inc.

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Virtual reality (VR) offers unparalleled capabilities to support and facilitate forensic activities. VR and other related technologies, like augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality (MR) have been around for more than half a century, but it is only in the last few years that it has shown the potential to go mainstream.

The question if VR will successfully go through massive adoption, and if users will ever want to walk around with digital glasses that sense and display information everywhere is still not answered, and it will likely take a few years to know for sure.

What is clear at this point in time is—given the increased power and reduced cost of the VR building blocks that are required to provide a truly believable experience—this technology will be widely adopted across specific target domains. Tools supporting use-cases where spatial information is critical, like crime scene reconstruction, will be able to leapfrog current capabilities. For these specific areas, VR could prove to be the most powerful media ever invented.

Presence through immersion

The main capability offered by virtual reality is that it “tricks” the users into a sense of “presence.” The sense of presence is well defined1 as “the subjective experience of being in one place or environment even when physically situated in another.”

A VR environment can deliver the sense of presence by leveraging immersion capabilities. Immersion describes the extent to which technology is capable of delivering a vivid illusion of reality to the senses of a human participant. A well created VR environment will reproduce images and sounds of a scene from the point of view of the user, and deliver in real-time these images and sounds adjusted to each user’s eyes and ears, based on the user’s position and orientation. It will also render the digital images from the user’s perspective with enough precision and sufficient frequency that it causes the user’s brain to reconstruct a 3-D model of the scene, and place the user at the center of such model. Long story short, the VR environment makes the user “feel” that he or she is at the scene.

In addition, this idea can be extended to emphasize the fact that the VR experience is facilitated by means of a communication medium, and as such, it can take place remotely, therefore the term “presence” in the VR context is also referred to as “telepresence.”

VR/AR Association (VRARA) Criminal Justice Committee - Hands-on Encounter

With the interest to explore and study the impact of VR in policy and practices across the Criminal Justice domain, the VRARA Criminal Justice Committee was founded by co-chairs Rory Wells, Assistant Prosecutor in Ocean County, NJ, and Eduardo Neeter, Founder of FactualVR, a technology start-up providing VR services for crime scene reconstruction. The scope of the new committee includes a broad range of use-cases, such as investigations, future courtroom applications and rehabilitation.  

The VRARA Criminal Justice Committee held its first hands-on meeting September 22, 2017.  Multiple law enforcement agencies, academics, non-profits and providers from the United States and Canada met for a first of its kind seminar and discussion on the impact of VR and AR on the criminal justice system. The meeting covered demonstrations of the latest technology, including VR applications from event co-sponsors FARO Technologies and FactualVR. The topics ranged from training and investigations, to the use of VR at trial, and the use of VR for rehabilitation/reentry after serving time in prison.   

Participants included forensic professionals and officers from multiple crime scene units, including NYPD, Toronto PD, Westchester County, NY and Hudson County, NJ.

Discussions centered around or focused on the benefits and potential of VR technologies, compared with current tools and practices. One of the attendees said, “The person in charge of the case sometimes doesn’t go to the crime scene for days or weeks, and in some cases doesn’t go at all. With this technology, they could walk into the scene right away, whenever they want.”

Collaboration and communication between investigators and prosecutors appears to be an area of interest and could offer significant value. This area could demonstrate the potential of VR as a productivity tool, as it has the potential to allow people do things they couldn’t do before, and at the same time, be able to do it more efficiently and with less friction than ever.

Detective Donald Palmer from Westchester County (NY) attended the VRARA event in September. We met again at the IAFSM conference in Atlanta about six weeks later. At the IAFSM conference, Palmer mentioned they had already started to test the VR capabilities in-house.

“Based on the VRARA presentation we bought a VR headset," he said. "We have been testing the VR software and showing our bosses how the scans look in VR. Everyone is beyond impressed with it. We are going to work with the Forensic Coordinator ADA from our DA’s office to determine if or how this could be shown in court.”

Looking forward, we are witnessing the emerging of a medium that could change the way we communicate, especially how we communicate about places and scenes, and anything related to spatial and 3-D information. It’s not a matter of if but "when," as the technology continues to mature and becomes mainstream, people will eventually demand that VR be used in every courtroom.

References:
1. Witmer, B. G., & Singer, M. J. (1998). Measuring presence in virtual environments: A presence questionnaire. Presence: Teleoperators and virtual environments, 7(3), 225-240.

Source

VRARA joins VR First, Intel, HTC Vive, LeapMotion to Launch World’s First VR Bundle for Innovation and Research

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VRARA Members get:

  • Free access to VR First labs to interested individuals who want to explore the merits of VR/AR tech

Plus, VRARA Members get 30% discount for VR First services:

  • Adding your product/service into VR First Bundle for Innovation and Research to bring bulk sales opportunities through academic channel
  • Academic/educational and science parks global outreach with more than 10.000 institutions
  • Direct cooperation with VR First labs for marketing use of VR/AR content/projects created
  • Branding in VR First website, online and social media announcements globally
  • Branding inside VR First labs and events locally

 

VR First, the global initiative for enabling VR/AR innovation, along with a team of VR/AR industry leaders, announced the launch of the world’s first VR Academic Purpose bundle, consisting of hardware, services and support/mentorship by key industry organizations, designed for academic research, development and innovation purposes. The bundle will allow academic institutions and science parks to engage with immersive technologies and grow their VR/AR labs.

VR First’s Academic Purpose VR Bundle

VR First’s Academic Purpose VR Bundle is being made available in partnership with Intel, HTC Vive, Leap Motion, CDWG, Futuremark, MixCast, SpringboardVR and Senses Global. Created to lower entry barriers for students, developers, entrepreneurs and researchers to access the latest VR/AR technologies, the bundle includes:

  • HTC Vive’s VR headset with accessories such as the Vive Deluxe Audio Strap and Vive Tracker, as well as education-related content through the Viveport store;
  • Intel Core i7: VR Ready PCs powered by Intel Core i7 processors to deliver the best experience and performance for VR content creation and development;
  • Leap Motion hand tracking technology directly attached to VR/AR headsets;
  • VRMark Professional Edition benchmarking software for VR performance from Futuremark;
  • MixCast by Blueprint Reality, which enables blending of real people with virtual worlds to create compelling 2D content from VR applications in real-time;
  • SpringboardVR’s VR management software for automating storage, distribution and launch of VR Content;
  • The Academic Bundle catalogue of procurement and logistics services by international technology solutions provider CDWG;
  • Access to technology solutions & services in VR, AR, Human Augmentation and Smart Robots by Senses Global;
  • Access to VR First’s extensive network of industry partners for expertise insight on building powerful communities equipped with cutting edge technology and knowledge.

The Academic VR Bundle is now available through VR First as part of its Regional Growth Services program. VR First is inviting all academic institutions, science parks and innovation centers to join and learn about special bundle rates and opportunities available through VR First’s industry network.

Starting early 2018, we will add further hardware devices and software solutions to the academic bundle. By that, VR First also expands the addressable market for partners through global academic and developer reach,” said Ferhan Ozkan, CEO of VR FirstMore details are available at VR First’s website.

“Education and academia are pushing the forefront of what’s possible in VR today,” said Daniel O’Brien, GM US, Vive. VR First has created a bundle of hardware and software that serves academic needs, educational requirements and increases the accessibility HTC Vive globally. We are happy to support their efforts to bring VR to more educational institutions.”

“As the core innovators of technology, Intel is constantly working on new ways to incentivize VR/AR development on a global scale. It is only right that we cooperate with VR First, IEEE and other industry and network partners to strengthen early adoption and reiterate our shared commitment to the democratization of VR/AR innovation,” said Frank Soqui, General Manager for VR and Gaming at Intel.

VR First’s Regional Growth Services

The new Academic Purpose VR bundle is a key component of VR First's Regional Growth Services that include renovation of existing facilities or end-to-end solutions for establishing new VR/AR facilities, as well as training, mentorship and crowd-based online competitions.

As an enabling organization, VR First provides not only expertise but also access to the VR/AR industry and community network on a global scale. This network access is essential to the development of regional strategies and industry vertical clusters centered around these growing facilities.

Democratization Effort Grows with Support from IEEE, E&I, IASP, IGDA, SMARTlab-IDRC, VRARA and WBAF

In this regard, mutual partnerships have been initiated between VR First and global network partners who share the vision of democratizing VR/AR innovation. They include IEEE (the largest technical professional organization in the world with more than 423,000 members in 160 countries), E&I (Cooperative of Higher Education Institutions in the US with 4,100 members), IASP (International Association of Science Park and Areas of Innovation covering close to 400 members in 77 countries), IGDA (The International Game Developers Association with 12,000 members), SMARTlab-IDRC (global research institute for social change based on innovation), WBAF (World Business Angels Investment Forum with 267 angel networks and investors from 52 countries), and VRARA (the VR/AR Association with 51 chapters in 24 countries and 3,900 companies).

For more information on VR First and its services, please visit www.vrfirst.com.

VR and AR Revenues to Reach $79 Billion by 2021 (new report)

Subscribe to ARtillry Insights to access the full report.

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How big are AR & VR and how big will they realistically get? ARtillry Intelligence ventured to quantify these sectors' revenue opportunity and the result is its latest industry revenue forecast.

And the Verdict? Global AR & VR revenues will grow from $4.1 billion in 2016 to $79 billion by 2021. This includes AR, VR and the enterprise and consumer segments of each. It mostly consists of hardware and software sales (see inclusions and exclusions below).

As for a breakdown of the major sub-sectors of the XR spectrum, consumer VR leads all categories today but will be quickly eclipsed by enterprise AR. Enterprise's leading stake has a lot to do with clear ROI for enterprise buyers, and a form factor that supports all-day use.

See the rest of the breakdowns below, and read about report's methodology here. You can also see our video companion below for additional narrative about revenue drivers and dynamics. To access the full report, subscribe to ARtillry Insights.

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Key Takeaways

Global AR & VR revenues will grow from $4.1 billion in 2016 to $79 billion by 2021.

Enterprise AR will grow from $829 million in 2016 to $47.7 billion in 2021. It’s the fastest growing segment of AR & VR revenues and the largest revenue segment in 2021. Scale will result from wide applicability across enterprise verticals; and a form factor that supports all-day use and clear ROI (e.g. manufacturing efficiencies). Near-term revenues will be hardware-dominant as it’s usually the first step in enterprise tech adoption. Hardware growth creates an installed base for software, which will dominate enterprise AR in outer years. Enterprise hardware adoption will also mature as it’s established in the enterprise, with replacement cycles outpaced by software refresh rates.

Consumer AR will grow from $975 million in 2016 to $15.8 billion in 2021. Until the 2020 introduction of Apple’s smart glasses, it will be dominated by the mobile form factor. Revenues will be software-dominant during that time (mobile devices aren’t counted in this forecast), and include app revenues such as in-app purchases. Much of this will evolve from the business model validated by Pokémon Go which drove most of 2016's consumer AR revenues. Niantic will also find success in its follow-up game to Pokémon Go, with architecture and game mechanics re-skinned to a Harry Potter theme. Consumer AR will hit an inflection point – and shift share towards hardware revenue – starting in 2020 as consumer-gear smart glasses finally arrive. Meanwhile, the development work put into mobile AR apps will be a training ground for an eventual glasses-dominant era.

Enterprise VR will grow from $665 million in 2016 to $4.4 billion in 2021. Though strong in its own right (46% CAGR), it will hold the smallest share of AR & VR revenues among the sub-sectors measured in this forecast. VR will be stronger as a consumer play (see below), while AR is stronger in the enterprise (see above). The latter dynamic stems from VR’s inherent isolation, which inhibits some job functions and share of time per working day. Like AR, VR’s near term enterprise revenue will be hardware-dominant as it’s the first step to tech adoption. That installed base will pave the way for enterprise VR software revenues to grow and overtake enterprise VR hardware revenues by 2019.

Consumer VR will grow from $1.6 billion in 2016 to $11.5 billion in 2021. Like enterprise VR, it will be hardware-dominant in early years as its installed base is established. Over time, software (in this case, games and apps) will eclipse hardware revenues with a faster refresh cycle. A greater installed base of hardware will also incentivize VR content creators to invest in long-form content, resulting in more robust VR content libraries and greater software spending per user (ARPU). Price competition among VR headset manufacturers (e.g. Oculus, Sony, Samsung) will also be a big consumer adoption driver. Oculus Go, at a $199 price point, will hit a sweet spot for quality and affordability, and will drive mainstream VR adoption and education starting in 2018. Oculus – with the advantage of Facebook-backing – has the flexibility to apply loss-leader pricing in order to trade margins for market share. That will give it a strong competitive position versus players that are dependent on hardware revenue (i.e. HTC, Samsung).

Subscribe to ARtillry Insights to access the full report.

What the hell is VR/AR and why should I care? Daily Hive article by VRARA Vancouver President Dan Burgar

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Original article posted on Daily Hive

Imagine receiving information about the world around you just by looking at it.

You walk by a restaurant and browse the menu without stepping inside, try on a sweater without going into the store, or follow directions to a new destination without having to look at your phone.

Now let’s take it one step further.

Imagine walking through your new apartment before it has even been built, exploring a foreign city without leaving your living room, or practicing open heart surgery without the risk of endangering someone’s life.

Sound crazy? This is the future that VR/AR technology promises and it’s not that far away.

In fact, a lot of it is happening right now.

By the end of 2017, roughly $1.6 billion USD will have been invested into the advancement of VR and AR technology.

And Vancouver is playing no small role in this development. Our city has become a top tech hub with upwards of 130 VR/AR companies exploring everything from gaming and filmmaking to architecture and enterprise solutions.

Read the full article here

Bay Area: Join Us For VR/AR Year-End Roundtable (12/08)

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What a year it's been for VR & AR. As we enter 2018, VR/AR Association SF is assembling the best minds for a mega panel on the industry's biggest challenges and opportunities.

join us in San Francisco on Wednesday December 6 for an evening of networking, food & drinks and elite speakers from VRARA's SF member base (additional details here).

There will be much to discuss and define as we enter the new year: What did we learn in 2017? What does 2018 have in store? And what does it mean for you? 

Act fast because this will be a smaller and more intimate gathering than our normal event series. VRARA members interested in speaking, please contact us.

Register here. VRARA members choose the "member" option at checkout.

Report from "Futureland 2017" VR AR Event in Italy

By JoinPad and Kris Kolo

Last week VRARA staff and members took part at one of the most exciting VR AR events in Italy. 

The event was full of keynotes, panels and workshops from the most influent professionals of AR | VR | AI | Robotics scene, both Italian and international. This posed as a great chance to look around and put the hands on the newest technologies and approaches, as the venue was full of companies and startups showcasing their products, both Software and Hardware.

The affluence to the event was incredible, a lot of people flooded the hall costantly throughout all the duration of the event, there were mostly professional looking for solutions to innovate their business, as it was the event’s topic, but we also met tech-enthusiasts and developers among the crowd.

The event was a success from all the points of view, and everyone who tried our products and demos was really impressed about how Augmented Reality technology can really simplify work operations like maintenance, training and remote support.

Kris Kolo, VRARA Global Executive Director

Kris gave a keynote speaking about the ecosystem. VRARA has over 3900 companies registered and it's almost a 50/50 ratio of VR to AR companies, many of which do both, VR and AR. 

Mauro Rubin, VRARA Italy Chapter, describing the Future Smart Factory

Among the vast number of speakers, Mauro Rubin, JoinPad CEO, went onstage to describe the Smart Factory of the Future, from the perspective of a company actively working to bring enterprises in the future through Augmented Reality. He described 2017 as the year of AR, pointing out that the innovation is coming by the application of this technology in the enterprise sector, where it can provide the most tangible added values.

During the presentation Mauro explored the topic through a series of industrial use cases where Augmented Reality has been applied. Each use case explained a different approach to the implementation of AR into enterprise operations to help different industrial sectors leverage the potential of their workforce, enhancing the perception of employees in the work-field.

This exploration covered a wide range of opportunities given by AR to enable the interaction between the user and his working environment, from the interaction with IoT connected machines to Artificial Intelligence and complex systems. This served as a starting point to understand how an AR platform can transform a normal factory into a Future Smart Factory.

The italian and international AR/VR scene at Futureland

At the show were present several companies, each one with a different focus but all aimed to create new business opportunities, from training VR applications to collaborative and smart Robotics. Looking from the inside we believe that the AR/VR/AI/Robotics ecosystem in Italy is still affirming, but we’re pleased to see that a lot of new players decided to become involved in this new fields.

During the exhibition, JoinPad CTO, Giuseppe Audino, was called to join the jury of a Call for Ideas promoted by PwC Italy, the competition wasn’t focused only on Augmented Reality, but in all the four themes of the event. Lot of interesting projects from italian startups and independent developers were submitted to evaluation, but just five gained the opportunity to end up in front of the jury, that judged Metaliquid solution as the best project running for the contest. This was a good signal of how fast this ecosystem is evolving in our country, gaining everyday more popularity and widespread, with ever increasing attention from big companies that more now than ever recognize the value of new technologies and seek for new projects to foster under their wings.

As an expert in Augmented Reality and Interaction Design, Agnese Ragucci, JoinPad designer&developer, described the trail of Augmented Reality Games in a timeline retracing their evolution through technologies, devices and examples. Starting from the early 00’s she narrated the history of this kind of games, focusing on the most important titles and the technology involved in their usage. She also described how certain strategies and techniques were employed to encourage the mass-adoption of AR technology, and then determined the success of some of the most played AR Games.

The second part of the speech was dedicated to forecasts and insights about the future of both AR and Gaming, describing how they are evolving in parallel to deliver ever more immersive experiences to the player, using technologies as Context Computing, Artificial Intelligence and new devices available on the market. The speaking session received a lot of attention, especially because is a fact that gaming is one of the driver of AR massification.

Partners, Meetups & Side Events

Our business partner, Ginwa, joined the event as speaker. Ivan Cui, president of iGinwa, the technological division of the corporate, discussed about the AR/VR scene in the eastern market, exploring topics such as hardware production, startups and investments. He also pointed out that the ecosystem in China is in its early stage, encouraging western startups to jump in and blend with the local ecosystem of investors and accelerators.

Peggy Yuan, Senior Investment and Program Manager of HTC Vive X Accelerator in Beijing, met the local VR and AR developers in a closed-door meetup, seeking for interesting startups to begin a conversation with, but also giving advices about the HTC acceleration program. She went in contact with several enterpreneurs and enthusiast, giving hints and insights about HTC latest products and platforms, and showcasing different startups under the Vive X Accelerator.

As supporting partners we were in charge of different internal meetups and side events. Through the VRARA, Google Engineer Piotr Praczyk, from the ARCore development team, were invited for an in-depth analysis of Google newest AR technology, generating a lot of interest in the more technical audience of the event, with a lot of developers participating to test demos and ask questions to the professional.

We also held a meetup with the VRARA to create a conversation among different Chapter Presidents, with Mauro Rubin representing the Milan’s Chapter of the Association, helping both newborn companies and well-established ones to understand the possibilities of the VRARA to leverage their businesses.

At the Meetup there were present, beside Mauro, three other representatives of the association: Kris Kolo – VRARA Global Executive Director, Miki Levy – Tel Aviv Chapter President and Thomas Fickert – Munich Chapter President.

If you need more information about getting involved with VRARA, contact us.

The 2018 event

We’re looking forward to join the next year’s edition, as already said this year’s event has been a success in all of its parts, both from the commercial side of the exhibition to the more eye-opening side of keynotes, panels and workshops.

Eagerly waiting for the next year’s event, we want to thank anyone who joined us in this beautiful experience, with a particular thank to Talent Garden Italy, for the flawless organization and Marcello Merlo as the curator of the event.

Source

Job Posting: Assistant Professor of Visual Arts, Animation at University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC)

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The University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) Department of Visual Arts seeks applications from creative, actively practicing animators/artists with expertise in 3D computer, virtual/augmented reality, interactive, alternative, and/or hybrid forms of animation. Applicants must possess a terminal degree in animation or related art field and have the ability to teach a range of courses within an innovative curriculum that merges traditional approaches with new technologies. The course content should instill strong conceptual, theoretical, and historical background to the subject.

Animation has a central position in a premier, research-intensive department with 350 undergraduate and 16 graduate students and 23 full-time faculty. We offer B.F.A. and B.A. degrees in: Animation, Cinematic Arts, Graphic Design, Intermedia, Photography, and Print Media, a B.A. in Art History and Museum Studies, and an M.F.A. in Intermedia and Digital Arts. Research and creative endeavors of Animation faculty center on interdisciplinary aspects of digital and time-based art forms, incorporating these evolving technologies into the educational process for realizing creative applications, ideas, and concepts.  Both the department and UMBC are committed to, and supportive of, quality faculty research and creative activities.

Our faculty play a major role in preparing the next generation of diverse, professional workforce in the field of animation. The successful candidate must be committed to excellence in teaching, research, and service. The applicant must demonstrate: (1) an established record of scholarly and/or artistic achievement in animation relative to rank; (2) previous university-level teaching experience; (3) the ability to teach all levels of 3D computer animation; (4) experience in 2D computer animation, gaming, and/or hybrid forms is a plus; (5) an interest in mentoring and/ or teaching M.F.A. graduate students in the department’s Intermedia & Digital Arts program. The course load assignment is four courses per year.

Diversity is a core value of the university and of our department. We believe that innovation and creativity are enhanced when diverse groups of people come together to learn. UMBC is committed to inclusive excellence and is especially proud of the diversity of its 14,000 undergraduate and graduate students. We are equally committed to increasing faculty diversity by attracting a diverse applicant pool for this position. Information on faculty diversity initiatives is available at http://facultydiversity.umbc.edu.We encourage applications from women, minority group members, veterans and individuals with disabilities. Resources to help balance work and personal priorities are available at http://hr.umbc.edu/work-life-balance/. Candidates that possess experience in, or a potential for, working with, teaching, or mentoring diverse students and/ or underserved populations are particularly encouraged to apply. Candidates are required to include a statement in the application packet on how meeting the learning needs of a diverse student population might alter course content of animation classes in pedagogically productive ways. Candidates will be selected on the basis of scholarly promise and the potential for building an equitable and diverse scholarly environment in teaching, mentoring, research and service.

UMBC is a fast-growing public research university ranked by the Carnegie Foundation as a ‘Research University - High Research Activity.’ We are situated 15 minutes from Baltimore along the dynamic North East Corridor. This puts us in proximity to federal and private research and technology hubs and internationally renowned art and cultural institutions of Washington, Baltimore, Philadelphia and New York. Undergraduate admission is competitive.

This tenure track, nine-month, full time appointment begins August 2018. Salary is commensurate with qualifications and experience. Preference will be given to applications received by January 19, 2018. Please upload: (1) samples of animation work and research; (2) CV; (3) cover letter describing teaching interests and philosophy, and research interests; (4) a statement about your experience in, or commitment to, fostering inclusive excellence and diversity in teaching, mentoring, research, life experiences or service; (5) three letters of reference via Interfolio ( http://apply.interfolio.com/45984 ). For information about the Department of Visual Arts, please visit our website at http://art.umbc.edu; for questions about this position contact department chair Preminda Jacob at (410) 455-2150. Screening of applications will begin January 22, 2018 and will continue until the position is filled. UMBC is an Equal Opportunity/ Affirmative Action Employer.

The VR/AR Association Online Conference

Jan 15-25 2018

 
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The Biggest VR AR Online Event

Jan 15 to 25 2018     3pm EST; 8pm GMT; 9am NZT

1000+ attending live

50+ Speakers

10 online symposiums (tracks): Education, Enterprise, Training, Storytelling, Retail, AEC, Marketing, Advertising, WebVR, Arcades/LBE/Haptics

If you want to speak or sponsor email info@thevrara.com

To attend (it's free!) register here

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The VR/AR Association's Industry Committees are hosting the following online symposiums (tracks) with live Q&A. Attend to learn about best practices, examples, and ROI. 

 

VR & AR in Storytelling (Jan 15 3pm EST)

To attend this symposium, register here

Presenters already include:

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See a preview of presentations here

 

VR & AR in Education (Jan 16 3pm EST)

To attend this symposium, register here

Presenters already include:

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Read more about the Education Committee here

 

VR & AR in Training (Jan 17 3pm EST)

To attend this symposium, register here

Presenters already include:

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Read more about the Training Committee here

 

VR & AR in Retail (Jan 18 3pm EST)

To attend this symposium, register here

Presenters already include:

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VR  & AR in Marketing (Jan 22 3pm EST)

To attend this symposium, register here

Presenters already include:

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VR & AR in Arcades, LBS, Haptics (being scheduled) 

Presenters already include:

  1. Todd Fuchs, The Holodeck
  2. Robin Alter, Ultrahaptics

 

VR & AR in Enterprise (Jan 24 3pm EST)

To attend this symposium, register here 

Presenters already include:

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VR & AR in Architecture AEC (being scheduled)

Speakers already include:

  1. Anton Dy Buncio, VIATechnik
  2. Alex Coulombe, Agile Lens
  3. Polley Wong, Briana Earl VIU.SPACE

 

VR & AR in WebVR and WebAR (Jan 25 3pm EST) 

To attend this symposium, register here

Speakers already include: 

  1. Shivang Shekhar, Mozilla
  2. Richard Petrich/Korbinian Würl, Involvr
  3. Weidong Yang, Kineviz

 

 
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Visit our sponsors' websites: ThirdEyeAtheer, Kaon Interactive, YouAreHereOrder66 Labs, aisle411

 

 

Watch the Recording of our Symposium: VR & AR in Healthcare

The VR/AR Association Healthcare Committee has produced this online event that was attended live by 500 doctors, specialists, and executives from around the world.  

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ETSI, VRARA to work together on Virtual and Augmented Reality for 5G

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Join our 5G Networks Industry Committee here

European ICT standards body ETSI and the global VR/AR Association (VRARA) have signed a letter of intent to collaborate on interactive VR and AR technologies delivered over emerging 5G networks and hosted on Multi-access Edge Computing (MEC) sites. The partnership is designed to encourage common member companies to pursue VR/AR-focused use cases and requirements for ETSI MEC Phase 2 with a view to ensuring that the resulting specifications address the needs of the sector.

VRARA will also support adoption of ETSI MEC work as appropriate and highlight benefits of Edge computing to VR/AR solution developers, said the partners in a statement.

Virtual and Augmented Reality technology holds the promise to fundamentally transform how people interact with and experience the physical world, how they are entertained, and how services are delivered to them.” states Alex Reznik, ETSI MEC chairman. “We are at the cusp of this transformation, and, yet, it cannot happen unless the networks that will have to support these applications can deliver the required performance, e.g. latency on the order of several milliseconds. Edge computing is necessary to deliver such performance; while mobile networks, which today already provide pervasive global connectivity, are likely to continue occupying this central role.

The partnership between ETSI, the home of the world’s leading Multi-access Edge Computing standardization activity and VRARA, the world leading industry association representing the Virtual and Augmented reality industry recognizes the need to bring the two communities together. This cooperation will encourage common member companies to pursue VR/AR focused use cases and requirements for ETSI MEC Phase 2 so as to ensure that the resulting specifications address the needs of this key industry sector. VRARA will support adoption of ETSI MEC work as appropriate and highlight benefits of Edge computing to VR/AR solution developers.

In a recent research report we’ve published, we learnt that enterprise AR & VR have more receptive buyers than consumer markets, due to a strong ROI case.” says Kris Kolo, Executive Director of the VR/AR Association. “Working closely with ETSI which expertise lays in all ITC related sectors makes sense. We’re really excited to start this collaboration with their MEC group.

About VRARA
The VR/AR Association (VRARA) is an international organization designed to foster collaboration between innovative companies and people in the virtual reality and augmented reality ecosystem that accelerates growth, fosters research and education, helps develop industry standards, connects member organizations and promotes the services of member companies.

For more information please visit: www.thevrara.com

About ETSI
ETSI produces globally-applicable standards for Information and Communications Technologies (ICT), including fixed, mobile, radio, aeronautical, broadcast and internet technologies and is officially recognized by the European Union as a European Standards Organization. ETSI is an independent, not-for-profit association whose more than 800 member companies and organizations, drawn from 68 countries across five continents worldwide, determine its work programme and participate directly in its work.

For more information please visit: www.etsi.org

Contact
Kris Kolo
Tel: +1 650 690 5361
Email: kris@thevrara.com

Claire Boyer
Tel: +33 (0)4 92 94 43 35
Mob: +33 (0)6 87 60 84 40
Email: claire.boyer@etsi.org

Virtual Reality, the Next Generation of E-Learning in Schools

Co-Authors:  Kris Kolo, Harry Evry, Carlos J. Ochoa, Rachel Ralph, Derek Jacoby, Yvonne Coady, Craig Vezina, Alisher Farhadi, Ross Cohen

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This article was written by VR/AR Association's Education Committee and features examples from Association members. 

Thank you to our sponsor CingleVue.

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VR and AR technology is rapidly evolving and is beginning to impact many fields and industries.  VR has the potential to immerse audiences, capture attention and dramatically reveal and showcase crafts, skills, sciences and systems in very memorable ways.  It can transport students into real-world or simulated locations or simulated environments, and interactively test and record their skills and reactions in a wide range of situations.

VR and AR can be used to invite world-renowned experts into the classroom, and introduce exhibits and examples that might be otherwise too costly, rare, destructive or hazardous to actually bring into the academic environment.  Both technologies can be leveraged to overcome issues of risk, time and scale, allowing students to experience situations, processes and phenomena that might be difficult to perceive or observe in physical reality.       

Today, educators can provide experiential learning without ever having to leave the classroom. Companies like VReducation have built VR experiences that take the concept of ‘learn through experience’ seriously. The company, based in Waterford, Ireland, created an education platform called ENGAGE that gives students and teachers the ability to communicate in a safe, virtual environment. The system allows up to 30 users into an experience at a time and has virtual assets such as presenter tools, interactive whiteboards, and streaming media features to keep things focused. The company’s Apollo 11 VR experience has already won multiple awards, and the upcoming Titanic VR is set to debut later this year.

Example: Schell Games SuperChem VR

Schell Games is one of the largest independent game studios in the US, and it aims to bridge education and entertainment. With support from an IES SBIR grant, one of their experiences is called SuperChem VR, a VR chemistry lab that feels every bit as tactile as its real world sibling. Students can perform specific measurements, conduct real lab procedures, and get real-time assistance. SuperChem VR prototype currently runs on the HTC Vive to allow for maximum hand and body movements in the learning space. The high-quality hardware allows players to focus on realism and accuracy without sacrificing visual and gameplay quality.

 

Example: WebGuys VR E-Learning Platform

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WebGuyz provides educational experiences through VR AR. Currently, Webguyz is partnered with NYC Dept of Education, UFT, NYIT, and Jump into the Light as well as Cisco Netacad to make VR and MR accessible to public as well as private school students. WebGuyz has created VR/AR experiences and curricula that are fully aligned to the common core and NY State Regents Examinations. Students are learning animation development and web development for VR, along with VR cyber security training. With more and more opportunities being developed for e-learning, WebGuyz is excited to clearly see VR/AR at the forefront of experiential education.

 

Example: ONE Digital SmartEducationLabs

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SmartEducationLabs (SEL) is a platform for educational services from ONE Digital, which includes VR & AR. SEL is compatible with traditional, multimedia and smart classroom lessons, and is used as a complement and not as a substitute for current systems.  Some Schools in Emirates and Spain are already working with SEL.

In 2016, The Ministry of Education of Emirates, implemented a Learning Resources Centers (LRC) Program in schools. Every LRC is equipped with VR/AR devices. The software suite includes virtual learning worlds complement text and pictures with a 3D experience.

 

Example: Steven Bambury at the JESS Dubai School

Head of Digital Learning and Innovation at JESS Dubai, Steve Bambury, uses VR headsets for use across the curriculum and staff regularly harness applications like Nearpod, Google Expeditions and YouTube 360 to share content with students. JESS continues to pioneer and seek new opportunities, running pilot schemes for LifeLiqe in Science, Kubity in DT and ImmerseMe in the Modern Foreign Languages Department. Another key pilot scheme has been Timelooper, an amazing VR platform for learning about history that transports students back in time using a clever mix of re-enactments and digital effects. Timelooper is primarily being harnessed in Key Stage 4 with GCSE students but younger students have also been able to engage with some truly unique experiences such as the Year 6 students who travelled in time to experience The Blitz in WW2.

 

Example: RealCast VR History & Culture

Founded by pioneers from education, robotics and game production, RealCast is using VR AR to fundamentally transform our relationship with history and culture. Based out of Paris’ Station F (stationf.co), the company develops new forms of multi-user interaction in VR AR to create seamless interactions between historical characters, settings and artifacts so as to powerfully enhance users' understanding of bygone times.  Its first In Situ Experience (ISXP) use-case provides interactive AR experiences via HoloLens for medieval castles with leading international educators and scholars as content and storytelling advisors. In addition to high-level content, RealCast is also developing a platform which will serve as sort of "time machine" for developers to build their own VR AR content with the aim of bringing history alive in powerful and unprecedented ways.

 

Example: Transmersive VR AR Exhibits

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Transmersive Media and Exposition Online, Inc is developing linear, interactive and location-based VR AR exhibits and attractions.  Two such educational VR AR exhibits include NightLife and Windows on the Past developed in collaboration with Playground Media Group and Red Gypsy Animation for the Las Vegas Springs Preserve.  In NightLife, students and museum guests gaze out a large simulated window through mounted, swiveling, “Night Vision Goggles” searching for and capturing images of nocturnal desert wildlife.  Virtual expedition guides, appearing on a large monitor describe and explain the nature and unique habits of the various animals as they are virtually encountered.  

Windows on the Past employs AR technology to restore and bring to life the native inhabitants and culture of an ancient puebloan ruin.  Museum guests explore the reconstructed physical pueblo, then, gazing through augmented reality windows, they see the pueblo as it might have looked during its use and occupation many centuries before.  The current rapid accelerations in VR devices and technology have made it possible to economically deliver similar types of immersive learning experiences into every modern school and classroom.   

      

Example: QVirt VR Installations for Student Learning Center

The Center for Digital Media, Royal BC Museum, University of Victoria, and QVirt are developing installations for the soon to be opened Student Learning center in Victoria British Columbia.  In these early days of educational VR applications, it is critical to establish best practices for exploring quantitative and qualitative data revealing the subtle relationship between virtual experiences and learning.  We are building on previous research that explores quasi-experimental ways of measuring successful VR experiences through various knowledge pre- and post-tests for measuring content knowledge [1, 2]. We are combining these with surveys to measure the VR experience in general [3]. Still other researchers have measured presence, immersion, and flow as a way of understanding immersion and interaction, which can lead to learning [4, 5]. There are several survey questionnaires that have been developed and validated that would be appropriate for measuring learning, such as the Presence Questionnaire and the Immersion Tendency Questionnaire [5, 6].

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Presence is described as a “psychological state of being there mediated by an environment that engages our senses, captures our attention, and fosters our active involvement” [5]. Immersion is also a psychological state and can be characterized as “perceiving oneself to enveloped by, included in, and interacting with an environment that provides a continuous stream of stimuli and experiences” [5].  Flow is a state where “people feel involved in meaningful actions, maintain a sense of control and stay focused on a goal” [4]. The flow experience “seems to occur only when a person is actively engaged in some form of clearly specified interaction with the environment” [6]. Similar to presence and immersion, flow is focuses on active engagement within an environment. For example, Bressler and Bodzin [4] used a short flow state scale to measure flow in a post-survey with students.

References:

1.      Chen, C.-T., Development and evaluation of senior high school courses on emerging technology: A case study of a course on virtual reality. Turkish Online Journal of Educational Technology - TOJET, 2012. 11(1): p. 46-59.

2.      Hauptman, H., Enhancement of spatial thinking with virtual spaces 1.0. Computers & Education, 2010. 54(1): p. 123-135.

3.      Tcha-Tokey, K., et al., Propostion and validation of a questionnaire to measure the user experience in immersive virtual environments. The International Journal of Virtual Reality, 2016. 16(1): p. 33-48.

4.      Bressler, D.M. and A.M. Bodzin, A Mixed Methods Assessment of Students' Flow Experiences during a Mobile Augmented Reality Science Game. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 2013. 29(6): p. 505-517.

5.      Witmer, B.G., C.J. Jerome, and M.J. Singer, The factor structure of the presence questionnaire. Presence: Teleoperators and Virtual Environments, 2005. 14(3): p. 298-312.

6.      Witmer, B.G. and M.J. Singer, Measuring presence in virtual environments: A presence questionnaire. Presence: Teleoperators and Virtual Environments, 1998. 7(3): p. 225-240.

7.      Csikszentmihalyi, M., Flow: The psychology of optimal experience. 1990, New York, NY: Harper and Row.

8. Developing Cyberspace, 2017, Harry J. Evry

9.         Carlos J. Ochoa Fernandez. Virtual and Augmented Reality in Education. Are we ready for disruptive innovation in Education?. 2016. ICERI (9th International Conference in Education, Research and Innovation). Pages: 2013-2022, ISBN: 978-84-617-5895-, ISSN: 2340-1095

VRARA Criminal Justice Committee Presents at IAFSM

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Atlanta, Georgia – VRARA Criminal Justice Committee (CJC) recently presented two sessions at the 4th Annual International Educational Conference held at the Hyatt Regency Downtown Atlanta (October 31, 2017- November 3, 2017).  The theme of this year’s conference was titled “Principled Data: From Crime Scene to Court”.  The International Association of Forensic & Security Metrology aka “IAFSM” comprises experts from a wide variety of backgrounds including law enforcement, military, engineering investigations, accident reconstruction and security professionals whose common element is the use and/or development of high-precision metrological systems.

Virtual Reality received a lot of attention this year in addition to presentations on cutting edge equipment, techniques and case studies to conclude a very successful event. Committee member and IAFSM Past-President, Eugene Liscio of ai2-3D stated, “I am very pleased with this year’s conference and the response from our meeting attendees on the use of VR/AR in the Criminal Justice system.  I believe most attendees saw a large potential for VR during the investigative process”.  

For information on the committee or future events, please email us at: info@thevrara.com.

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FactualVR Principal and VRARA CJC Co-chair Eduardo Neeter covering current and future applications of Virtual Reality for Crime Scene Investigation.

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VRARA CJC Co-chair Rory Wells, Esq. presenting on legal obstacles for VR to overcome before acceptance by the courts.  

AR & The Future: Enterprises & Backrooms (Online Class)

VR/AR Association members, contact us for a discount code to attend

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Immersive technologies hold lots of potential to streamline business operations -- both corporate and "heavier," fare like manufacturing. But the opportunity hinges on professional development and education, as shown in the VR/AR Association's many webinars and symposiums.

In that same spirit, Shel Israel's Transformation Group has launched a series of live online classes. Known as AR & the Future, they will help professionals understand how immersive technology will change all business sectors. VRARA has partnered with TG, meaning discount codes for you.

The next class is coming up on November 28th. Entitled AR & The Future, Enterprises & Backrooms, it will zero in on how AR will unlock functionality and value in backroom operations.

More details are below and VRARA members can contact us to receive a discount code. We hope you'll join us on the 28th.  


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AR & the Future: Enterprises and Backrooms

Nov. 28, 2017 10:00 AM to 12 pm Pacific Time

Summary: Even though media attention focuses mostly on immersive technology in consumer-facing business, a great deal of the adoption and ROI is happening within enterprises and in the backrooms of retail organizations. The gains are being realized in logistics, safety, training and efficiency. Rather than zapping aliens, these applications improve profitability, morale and communication effectiveness.

Shel Israel, Transformation Group CEO & co-author of The Fourth Transformation: How Augmented Reality and Artificial Intelligence Will Change Everything will present an overview of how AR is changing the enterprise, where the costs and limitations of devices seem far less relevant to miners and oil rig workers than they do to shoppers and gamers.

He will explore use cases most relevant to the enterprise and backrooms of retail operations.

This session will include a guest presentation by Wolfgang Stelzle, founder and CEO of RE’FLEKT, a Munich-based startup working with Daimler, Porche, Bosch, Seepex and Microsoft. He will explain how the basic application of converting user manuals into AR-based instructions will save billions of dollars while making customers happier and more successful.

The class is designed for managers and professionals who want to use AR to bolster their companies and careers. Attendees will develop knowledge they can use to start their own AR efforts while educating and motivating others.