Few things can top an Oculus Rift hack that involves hands and music
A Kiwi design student named Bryon Mallett has come up with Pensato, a virtual reality interface for controlling music devices and software that, unlike most other Oculus Rift-based projects out there, makes pretty good use of human hands. In a video he posted to YouTube back in September, Mallet can be seen creating some music — actually the “final compositional output” for his Masters of Design Innovation — using popular music creation software Ableton Live and his Penasto interface, which allows him to interact with various sound controls using a pair of custom VR gloves as if they were physical objects.
Dev kits have reportedly already reached some developers
Rumors of a virtual reality (VR) headset for Microsoft’s Xbox One console first began to swirl in March — around the same time as Sony’s Project Morpheus announcement at the Game Developers Conference (GDC) — but almost ten months later we have yet to see such a head-mounted display (HMD) with our own eyes. However, with Xbox boss Phil Spencer admitting, time and again, to “playing with virtual reality”, we can be certain of one thing: we are not dealing with a piece of vaporware here.
While Samsung has released its Gear VR headset for mobile devices, there are virtual reality enthusiasts who are waiting for Oculus VR to finally release a consumer version of the Oculus Rift. In the meantime, the company continues to expand and bring more people into the fold. Today, Oculus VR announced that it has acquired Nimble VR, 13th Lab, and has hired Chris Bregler.
This may be the best way to control virtual reality
While virtual reality headsets are going through a renaissance period, VR controllers are still stuck in the Wild West. Many companies are trying to find the best ways to allow you to interact in these virtual worlds, but unfortunately, there is no clear great way to do it quite yet. To be fair, coming up with a solution that allows people to reach out into virtual worlds to pick up things with their hands is no easy task, but if anyone’s got a fighting chance at solving the puzzle, it’s Sixense.
When Facebook acquired Oculus VR for $2 billion, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg talked about how the Oculus Rift could “change the way we work, play, and communicate.” One of the ways VR is currently being used is to record movies and documentaries. Sir David Attenborough, for example, is shooting a documentary series for the Oculus with a special eight-camera rig. But the first such film is now out and that is the Zero Point documentary film about virtual reality and shot for the Oculus Rift.
Looks like Nvidia isn't the only GPU company equipped to take on VR latency
While PC gamers are excited about the release of Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 980 graphics card, it is the Oculus community that is gushing over the GPU. The 980 has become a darling of the VR community with Nvidia’s claims that the new Maxwell-architecture video card will cut latency by up to 50%. It also helps that Oculus VR used the GTX 980 on its systems at its inaugural Oculus Connect event held in September.
Despite all the recent buzz, the fact remains that the immediate commercial prospects of virtual reality head mounted displays (HMDs) aren't nearly as bright as many like to imagine and it could be quite a while before such devices become mainstream — something even Oculus Rift creator Palmer Luckey admitted a while back. Even that isn’t enough to deter new companies from entering this incipient market, though. The latest entrant is widely renowned German optics company Zeiss.
We play around with Windows 10 technical preview on the show
Brett Puttman and Scott Moschella from our video production crew join us on episode 234 of the No BS Podcast to talk about Windows 10 (we play around with the technical preview in the podcast), the state of broadband in the US, Oculus Rift Crescent Bay, Intel's CPUs, and the appeal of Apple products. Brett and Scott are techie guys who, in the course of their work, deal with Apple devices a lot. They have some pretty interesting insight into the Apple universe, and technology in general.
Oculus confirms that Crescent Bay prototype isn't for sale
If you recently ordered an Oculus Rift development kit 2, but are still waiting for it to arrive, you might be wondering if Oculus will let you hold off on DK2 in favor of the newer, snazzier Crescent Bay prototype. At least, that’s a situation we found ourselves in.
Oculus making steady progress on road to consumer Rift
At its two-day Oculus Connect developer conference in Los Angeles this week, Facebook-owned Oculus VR introduced a new, improved version of its Rift virtual reality head mounted display (HMD). Called Crescent Bay, this latest prototype packs a number of improvements over the DK2 model. These improvements, the company says, are enough to ensure a level of immersion “that’s impossible to achieve with DK2.”