Virtual & Augmented Reality News - Page 131
An enterprising gamer has done what gamers do best: thought outside the box. What he's done is grabbed a bunch of components, built a virtual reality, motion-controlled, Skyrim experience. The equipment used was: Skyrim, a Sony HMZ-T1, a Kinect, a TrackIR 5, a TrackClip Pro, Shoot [software], and FAAST 0.9 [also software]. The results? This:
The artist goes by the name of 'Awesome Man', and from the video's comments we have:
I've setup the Sony HMZ-T1 head mounted display to use Stereoscopic 3D as well as attached the TrackClip Pro on it for head tracking. I had to place the TrackIR 5 on a wire hanging from the ceiling as it needed to be around head level to track my head movements properly.
The Kinect was setup on the PC using PrimeSense's OpenNI drivers. I used FAAST 0.9 with a custom script to map certain gestures with the keyboard, such as walking on the spot to move in the game, leaning left, leaning right, jumping and moving my right arm forward to use the sword.
I talked about this a few weeks ago, where I was quite excited by the potential of Android-powered Google HUD glasses. It's become more of a reality, where the New York Times reporting that Google are not only working on them, but Google are planning to launch the glasses by the end of this year.
The New York Times cite "several Google employees familiar with the project", where NYT's Nick Bilton reports that the glasses will be powered by Google's Android OS, sport 3G or 4G connectivity, as well as GPS and a few sensors, cost-wise, we'd be looking at "around the price of current smartphones", so between say $250 and $600.
The HUD glasses are also said to sport a low-resolution camera which can monitor your surroundings in real time and then overlay the relevant information, but Google are said to be paying attention to potential privacy concerts, and "wants to ensure that people know if they are being recorded by someone wearing a pair of glasses with a built-in camera".
Hasbro announces NERF Lazer Tag, uses iPhone or iPod Touch and sports augmented reality lazer tag gameplay
The first two words of hearing this news to me in my mind were, 'do want!' NERF have just announced the revolutionary new Lazer Tag system, which "combining the power, precision and excitement of live-action blaster battles with the high-action, strategic, augmented reality gameplay of traditional video games."
Players can download the free Lazer Tag app from the App Store onto their iPhone or iPod touch device, connect it to their Lazer Tag blaster, and immerse themselves in a world where "video games and real life connect". You can play in both single and multi-player, where players can engage in a Lazer Tag match featuring friends (or foes?) or virtual opponents.
Each Lazer Tag blaster has a virtual firing range of over 250 feet, and contains a Heads Up Display (HUD), which lets players keep track of their gear and remaining power, as well as providing a view of the augmented reality targets and enemies in the area. On top of this, a virtual leaderboard also keeps tabs on each player's profile, with every successful mission, players gain access to in-game upgradeable attacks, missions and gear.
Hasbro will release the Lazer Tag 2 Blaster set, which includes two Lazer Tag blasters for just $69.99, as well as the single Lazer Tag Blaster for just $39.99, with both being made available on August 1, 2012. Each blaster requires 6 x AA batteries, and will be available at most major toy retailers nationwide, and alternatively, on HasbroToyShop.com
Every time a new tech product comes out that I want, I make an excuse to how I can justify its purchase. Two Christmas' ago, I got myself some GTX 570s in SLI, just after my birthday last year, a Galaxy S II, and my birthday coming in March (March 12th to be precise, so all of your presents get to me on time) and now there's something I want.
9to5Google reported on this back in December, with some early information:
They are in late prototype stages of wearable glasses that look similar to thick-rimmed glasses that "normal people" wear. However, these provide a display with a heads up computer interface. There are a few buttons on the arms of the glasses, but otherwise, they could be mistaken for normal glasses. Additionally, we are not sure of the technology being employed here, but it is likely a transparent LCD or AMOLED display such as the one demonstrated below: In addition, we have heard that this device is not an "Android peripheral" as the NYT stated. According to our source, it communicates directly with the Cloud over IP. Although, the "Google Goggles" could use a phone's Internet connection, through Wi-Fi or a low power Bluetooth 4.0.
OMGTT: PowerVR are making a PC comeback, releasing PCI-Express GPGPU card that provides real-time ray-tracing
Wow. I remember the PowerVR days so fondly. Yes, they didn't make the same impact as 3dfx did in the day, but I remember as a young PC gamer, wanting their hardware so bloody bad it hurt. I remember getting my Dad to import me a 3dfx card (Orchid Righteous 4MB Voodoo card for those who would remember) and it being THE BEST THING EVER.
PowerVR cards were always something I never had, and now there's news they're returning to release a discrete GPU card, in the complete opposite of what they used to do. Imagination Technologies are the team behind it, and last year, they acquired Caustic Graphics.
Caustic Graphics are a San Francisco-based start-up who were (before the acquisition) working on an accelerator that would make real-time ray-tracing, a reality. They managed to make two generations of products which were more technology demonstrators than real-world products, but their FPGA chips worked.
After Imagination Technologies acquired them, they continued to work on building commercial purpose for its technology and at CES 2012, they began to see the finish line. VR-Zone talked to representatives of both Caustic and Imagination Technologies, where they were told to expect the introduction of the new card in the second half of 2012, more specifically, they have a goal of Siggraph 2012.
Microsoft researchers have unveiled Omnitouch, a new system that uses a Short-Range Depth Camera together with a Pico-Projector and turns any surface area into a navigatable touchscreen. Microsoft, in a joint project with Carnegie Mellon University reveals that the technology works in a similar way to Microsoft's Xbox Kinect, but is "modified to work at short-range" to track finger movements.
In the video below, you can see that the projector superimposes a virtual keyboard image onto a hand, arm, notepad or wall, which a user can tap or drag their fingers and access it like a normal touchscreen device. Of course, in its test stages, it looks completely dorky, but this is some future tech.
It shows a shoulder-based system, with a Kinect sensor sitting on the users shoulder, as well as the Pico-Projector, with the demonstration showing how "you can tap on your hand or drag your interface out to specify the top left and bottom right border," explains researcher Hrvoje Benko.
Vuzix Wrap 1200VR video eyewear is now out, sporting a simulated 75-inch 3D display at ten feet away in up to 720P HD via its dual monitor setup. The VR bit comes from the included Wrap Tracker 6TC with compass, which enables head-tracking with three degrees of freedom. It also includes drift control which should maintain smooth visuals when you're tilting your head to look at the on-screen action.
The unit is said to work with most Windows-based graphics cards and VGA connections, but if you want to get your VR on the Xbox 360 or PS3, you'll require some adapters. The unit is just $600, which shows that pricing is not actually too bad on these puppies.
If you're looking for a decent entry level Z68 on the cheap, you may be interested to know that Biostar are delivering what looks to be a fairly well rounded budget board in the new TZ68K+ that they've just launched this week.
Biostar actually already has what looks like an identical board in its current lineup, the TZ68A+, however the new TZ68K+ differs in that it sports a stronger CPU VRM arrangement with 8 phases vs. the 4-phase VRM setup on the TZ68A+, making it a bit more attractive if you want to get a decent overclock. As a result of the chunkier VRM setup, it now has its own heatsink to assist in keeping temps at bay.
in Santa Clara, CA, May 17-18. Using their mobile augmented reality browser junaio to navigate the entire conference.
Attendees can download the junaio browser on their Android or iPhone and launch the experience from specifically and strategically placed Latitude, Longitude and Altitude (LLA) markers that will synchronize the indoor AR experience. Generally, AR navigation depends on GPS and geo-locational data to function, but GPS isn't yet precise enough to facilitate indoor navigation (things are just too close together). Metaio's technology however allows for a fairly seamless indoor directions and information (pending that you launch the application correctly).
The junaio "channel" will be providing up-to-date information regarding the various sessions and speakers, as well as giving remote information about sponsors and organizations on the expo floor. Isn't AR neat?
What goes through someone's head before he or she actually makes a decision like this? Well, Cranberry Zero solved that riddle for us:
Last week I finally snagged a Nintendo 3DS and after playing the augmented reality games, the first thing I thought was "Oh s***, that AR card would make a killer tattoo." And so this weekend, I got the 3DS AR tattoo and it's f***ing awesome.
The Mii photo came out pretty well, but it couldn't have been easy to take. The 3DS isn't exactly a one-handed device, as further proven by the following video:
Not the most easily accessible augmented reality experience. Also- how are you going to play the game if your one free hand is holding the 3DS? There's also this:
Sorry that it's jittery...the way I was having to hold my arm and hold the 3DS and look through the viewfinder of the camera meant that my arm was at a slight angle and the 3DS was trying to place it on a flat plane.