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Random Musings
July 26, 2015

So, life has been a little overwhelming recently and I haven’t been in the swing of things the way that I normally like to be. I’ve been dealing with a lot of stress from trying to balance a summer class workload with working full-time, and there’s been a lot of travel in my life recently, so I haven’t been as free to blog and share what I’m working on as much as I’d wanted to.

But, I have a bit of a runway between now and my next trip (to Germany, Washington D.C, and then to San Diego, all within 3 weeks of each other starting the last week of August!) so I decided to do one post that summarized most of the last month for me, and will hopefully be back on track!

My SoCal VR Expo Selfie! Arriving early pre-event to set up for WebVR

My SoCal VR Expo Selfie! Arriving early pre-event to set up for WebVR

The major VR event of the month for me was Socal VR Expo, in Orange County, where I set up to share some of the work being done with WebVR – as is usually the case, a lot of people are still unaware that they can play around in JavaScript for virtual reality and it was great to see people’s interest in browser-based VR experiences. I had a chance to meet a lot of people working on really cool stuff around AR and VR technologies, and it was a lot of fun to get out of the Silicon Valley scene just for a bit and see how things are doing in SoCal. The event was really well executed – Kudos to the team behind it all, and a special shoutout to the guys at OCVR for inviting me down!

There was also another SVVR meetup this month, and I gotta say – the new venue was a big hit for me, despite issues with glare postponing the speakers a bit. I had a chance to try several new demos for both experiences and for haptic devices, and got to hear a little bit about practices and the content Jaunt VR is working on with their 360 degree camera. There were more than a few jabs at Go Pro, but the content they shared looked slick and there is definitely a growing sense of optimism in the world of immersive video content.

Cymatic Bruce and Karl opening SVVR

Cymatic Bruce and Karl opening SVVR

I spent the later part of the month back on the East coast – three days at home where I spent time coding amongst all the fun of boating and jet skiing, and then another week in Orlando for a work conference. I took a couple of 360 degree photos at home, but they don’t stitch nicely with so much moving water in the background. Nonetheless, it is still nice to have that little memory to pop into with my phone & cardboard when I’m missing family.

A 360 degree photo at my parents house - you can see where the edge seam is broken on the middle-right, but it's still lovely to look around it

A 360 degree photo at my parents house – you can see where the edge seam is broken on the middle-right, but it’s still lovely to look around in it

The rest of my time has been spent focusing on classwork – if you’ve seen me tweeting about C++ and OpenGL, you may already know about my struggles with my graphics class. The work, though, as challenging as it is, has taught me a lot about underlying concepts in graphics computing and will be instrumental in how I can approach some of the work I’m doing with WebVR and in Unity. Unfortunately, I haven’t had as much play time with VR coding since classes started, but there’s just 3 weeks to go and I’m getting started on a final project now, which will hopefully have some (even if minor) relation to VR!

Although last words are famous, I’m really hoping to finally be at a point where things start balancing again. My main focus outside of class between now and the end of August is to continue working on my ‘Intro to VR Development’ curricula, which I’m building for a 1-week summer class that I’ll be teaching and will ideally form the foundation of what I hoped KittenVR would be (a series of tutorial videos on getting started with building VR apps). In the meantime, I’ll be continuing to follow all the VR things on Twitter, going to the next SFVR Meetup (which looks awesome!), developing when I have free time, and, of course, avoiding all the tough things by popping on the headset for a little bit when I can.

Love & Virtual Reality,

-Livi

Sent from within my Oculus Rift…. I wish.

 

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