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Inside VR & AR

Inside VR & AR (Oct 8th, 2018)

1. Despite the Oculus Quest’s demonstrated arena-scale capabilities, Oculus is firm that the headset is designed for large, but limited spaces. “It is indoor only,” Oculus Head of Hardware Product Management Sean Liu told VentureBeat. “The easiest way to think about this is the sensors are analogous to your eyes. So if you can read a book in an environment, you can probably also track.” That could be an issue of the company protecting itself against possible lawsuits, according to VentureBeat, so whether or not the headset will work in vast, open areas, may be something only determined after the headset is released next spring 2019. -- VENTUREBEAT

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2. “Job Simulator” and “Rick and Morty VR” developer Owlchemy Labs has revealed a new experiment that lets tablets and smartphones “see” into shared VR spaces. The spectator camera currently uses Google's ARCore augmented reality SDK and lets another player interact with players in VR. Examples include taking images of virtual spaces, as well as tossing virtual objects at the VR player. A representative of Owlchemy told VentureBeat the spectator app is only a research project and that they "don’t currently have any plans to release it.” -- VRFOCUS

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3. Finnish headset startup Varjo has announced $31 million in Series B funding led by Atomico. Varjo is working on a “Bionic Display” VR/AR headset the company promises is “the world’s first human-eye resolution VR/XR product.” Varjo is using a large low-density display, small high-density display combo to attempt the vaunted “can’t see the pixels” display (shown in the attached image). The company is initially targeting enterprise customers, with a projected launch window of Q4 2018, and an AR add-on planned for the first half of 2019. -- ROAD TO VR

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4. VR documentary “Zero Days VR” won an Emmy in the category of “Outstanding New Approaches: Documentary.” The immersive documentary was produced by New York studio Scatter, and tells the story of the growing collateral damage caused by intensifying cyber warfare. The chilling film explores Stuxnet and the state-sponsored programs that led to the immensely destructive worm. The VR film was released in June and is available on Oculus Rift and HTC Vive headsets for $5. -- ROAD TO VR

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You’re Invited: Free Pass to Hear How Golden State Warriors are Building a Winning Business

Be our guest on October 25 at SuiteConnect West for a day of learning, networking and professional growth. Don’t miss this chance to hear from Golden State Warriors executives. This is just one of the many great sessions you can experience for free.

To receive your complimentary pass, enter code CSCINS18 when you register.

5. Facebook today enters the hardware game, with its “Portal” and “Portal+” smart screens. The devices can display photos and videos, and uses AI to enhance video calls made with Facebook Messenger, according to The Verge: “The Portal is designed to simplify video chatting by having a wide-angle camera capable of identifying your body, then tracking you as you move around the room.” Facebook will start selling the devices next month--$199 for the Portal and $349 for the larger Portal+. -- THE VERGE

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6. Magic Leap's acquisition of decentralized and distributed mesh computing makers Computes, Inc. could boost the AR headset's power. -- NEXT REALITY

7. Energetic (even exercise-ready) VR title "Beat Saber" is now the No. 7 top game (VR or otherwise) on Steam. -- ROAD TO VR

8. VRFocus talks with "Vox Machinae" developer Space Bullet Dynamics Corporation about the recently released mech shooter. -- VRFOCUS

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9. "Hot" tip for bald Vive wireless users...

"So... protip for bald people. The Vive wireless adapter gets -hot- with prolonged use. Got about 1.5 hours into Organ Quarter and started to feel some pain in the top of my head, realized I was cooking my scalp. The numbness tells me I have in fact given myself a 1st degree burn." - @Moike_the_Squid (Founder of BrainFizz VR LLC - Bicycle Junkie - Roller Derby Nut - Formula 1 Sidecar Racer - OG 90's era Virtual Reality Lunatic - Lover of all pointless tech)

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10. I... don't want to explore a gastrointestinal tract in VR...

"Immerse yourself into a virtual colonoscopy at #ACG2018. Stop by our booth (#1315) to play our Gastro Ex mobile game or try our Gastro Ex #VR experience!" - @LevelExTeam (Professional video games for physicians to diagnose/perform procedures on virtual patients to advance decision-making skills. #AirwayEx #GastroEx#VideoGameCME)

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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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