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Inside VR & AR

Inside VR & AR (Sep 13th, 2018)

1. Yesterday’s Apple event was mostly focused on the company’s new phone offerings, but that included a lot of time talking about the augmented reality upgrades coming with ARKit 2.0. To illustrate these upgrades, a couple iPhone-wielding folks played an AR version of 1981 arcade classic “Galaga”: “ARKit 2.0 technology brings the old school title to life as you battle incoming waves of crystal-clear enemy ships and bosses within the real world,” VRScout reported. “Multiplayer functionality lets you and up to three friends shoot down baddies together as they battle for the highest score.” Click through for gifs that do the demo better justice. Apple also demonstrated an AR basketball education experience that will “track and analyze a players performance.” -- VENTUREBEAT / VRSCOUT

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2. The 2018 Journalism 360 Challenge has announced the 11 winners of the contest out of more than 400 submissions. The Google News Initiative, Knight Foundation and Online News Organization held the contest, posing the question “How might we experiment with immersive storytelling to advance the field of journalism,” according to VRFocus. “The diversity of voices and projects represented by this year’s challenge participants provides an optimistic outlook for journalism...We heard from creators around the world who are expanding the boundaries of immersive storytelling and experimenting with more varied tools...We’re also excited to see journalists pitching innovative ways to help people in their communities use immersive technology to tell their own stories,” said the director of Journalism 360. The list of winners and their projects is available after the jump. As a journalist who absolutely sees the power and potential of immersive storytelling technology in a rapidly changing journalism business, you can’t imagine how happy its makes me to see these projects recognized, both with acclaim but also with material support. -- VRFOCUS

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3. Next Reality published the next installment of its NR30 project, this time focusing on the “Mobile Leaders of 2018.” A lot has changed in the AR world since last year, much of that at the hands of Apple, supporting Apple head Tim Cook’s placement at the top of the list: “In just 12 months, we've seen mobile AR grow at a breakneck pace. Since Apple launched its AR toolkit, users have downloaded more than 13 million ARKit apps from the App Store, not including existing apps updated with ARKit capabilities. Apple has already updated its platform and will introduce even more new features to the public with the release of ARKit 2.0 this fall. Last year's iPhone X also introduced a depth-sensing camera and AR Animojis that captured the imaginations of its users.” The rest of the comprehensive list is available after the jump. -- NEXT REALITY

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4. VR will undoubtedly change the way education works, and more and more folks are taking up the battlecry. Up today: Steve Bambury of VirtualiTeach and JESS Dubai for VRFocus. “Our students need to be ready for a future where virtual reality will permeate many facets of their everyday lives. Technology costs will always fall and new, more expensive generations of technology will always emerge but as the VR train really begins to gather steam, remember that If your school just continues to sit back and wait to for the ideal time to jump onboard, you could find yourself left waiting on the platform.” Highly recommended, if you’re an educator, are education-minded, or are just interested in how technology is/will be adopted by the next generation of world citizens. -- VRFOCUS

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5. We're in an interesting stage of VR adoption, where the "craft" of storytelling is broadly taking a backseat to technical concerns (not for a lack of trying), revealing a very large opportunity for new creators. -- VENTUREBEAT

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6. New VR release "Windlands 2" boasts novel, fun locomotion with echoes of monkey-in-canopy or Spider-Man-in-New York. -- ROAD TO VR

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7. This "Manga in VR" proof of concept shows rich creative potential (I highly recommend following this Facebook Social VR artist). -- ROAD TO VR

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8. Meanwhile, someone is surely building a "Breaking Bad" VR experience...

"Watch out Heisenberg. NSENA's new Virtual Reality training focuses on spotting outdoor methamphetamine labs. #meth #methamphetamine #policetraining #lawenforcementtraining #police #lawenforcement #cops #ThinBlueLine #vr http://ow.ly/jOm930ks9aT " - @nsenvr (We offer a superior virtual reality training platform for law enforcement and corrections.)

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9. Already seen in HR, rehabilitation, and many more VR experiences...

"Studies show that fictional literature has improved the empathy of mankind. Will #VR do it next? Inspiring presentation by @kristatuulia at @FutureFemale" - @anniinah (Head of #MobilePay Finland, cherishing everything #digital and customer centric. Making the world #cashless#mobilepayments #fintech #UX)

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10. Future locomotion solution for VR/AR?

"Here you can see how @MotekforceLink's CAREN and its motion base challenges patients. As @MikeJones_65 walks up and down the bridge, the treadmill tilts and shakes to match the environment he is immersed in. Read more @DNRCOfficial @DMS_MilMed #DNRC #VR" - @SummitMedSci (Summit Medical and Scientific are the UK reps for @MotekforceLink@Hocoma@AMTI_Multiaxis & @myonAG. We supply rehabilitation and biomechanics solutions.)

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Written and curated by Eric Skalac, who is a hands-on IoT and VR/AR tinkerer, former NPR affiliate news director and eternal learner. He's based in central Illinois where the waves of grain are amber.

Editing team: Lon Harris (editor-in-chief at Inside.com, game-master at Screen Junkies), Krystle Vermes (Breaking news editor at Inside, B2B marketing news reporter, host of the "All Day Paranormal" podcast), and Susmita Baral (editor at Inside, recent bylines in NatGeo, Teen Vogue, and Quartz. Runs the biggest mac and cheese account on Instagram).

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