VR on Parade


A Virtual Reality Halloween Parade with NYC Media Lab @ NYU VR Lab

Yesterday I had the opportunity to attend and speak at a NYC Media Lab event, as well as attend a “field trip” tour of a couple of AR/VR labs at local universities. Overall there was great content with speakers from the Wall Street Journal, Associated Press and several VR startups. One of the highlights of the day was Ken Perlin talk about what they are doing with VR in his lab at NYU. His team has developed a pretty amazing shared VR experience called HoloJam which allows several participants to share a 3d world. Using un-teathered Galaxy Gear VR headsets with some additional motion tracking hardware and a motion capture system, people are able to use the room as a 3d canvas each able to draw in the 3d space. It was the easiest setup I’ve ever seen for a multi-user VR experience , just put on the headset grab some “hands” and go. 

The experience is built from consumer hardware: Gear VR headsets and Wii gaming remotes. Photo by Chuck Fletcher.

The experience is built from consumer hardware: Gear VR headsets and Wii gaming remotes. Photo by Chuck Fletcher.

They also did a Halloween themed version of the system to create a VR party that just has to be experienced to be believed. As part of the Lab tour I was able to experience it for myself, and it was pretty amazing. It was the first time I was in a cord free multi-user VR experience and able to freely roam around the room, with clear boundaries as to where I could go and who was there so I didn’t bump into them. 

NYC Media Lab Future Realities Field Trip to NYU: Attendee's try out the HoloJam Halloween experience first hand. Photo by Chuck Fletcher.

NYC Media Lab Future Realities Field Trip to NYU: Attendee's try out the HoloJam Halloween experience first hand. Photo by Chuck Fletcher.

The experience truly felt like the start of something new and made we wonder how multi-user VR may change the future of travel, education and even retail. Many of these carry specific social advantages and have seemed distant to VR’s disruption … until now. 

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