Category Archives: Virtual Reality

VR Social Spaces and Smart Wearable for Asthma

This time, Nora Young talks about AltspaceVR, a new social platform using Virtual Reality. Read Motherboard's hands-on coverage here. Cathi refers back to our chat about holoportation. Cathi Bond looks at the HET Health and Environment Tracker (via Gizmag). It's a combination wristband and chest patch for people with asthma. It monitors both the wearers biometric data (including signs of wheezing) and environmental data. Smart! Thanks for listening, and we hope you'll consider rating us! [iframe style="border:none" src="http://html5-player.libsyn.com/embed/episode/id/4422462/height/100/width/480/thumbnail/no/render-playlist/no/theme/standard" height="100" width="480" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen oallowfullscreen msallowfullscreen] Download MP3

Augmented Reality Holoportation and Cool Urban Planning

On today's podcast, Cathi Bond talks about Microsoft Research's "holoportation" technology, that uses 3D video cameras to capture a moving image of a person in one location and send that image to a person wearing the "Hololens" headset, anywhere in the world. (via Gizmag). Check out the video below, and let us know your thoughts in the comments! Cathi also talks a bit about the legacy of Zaha Hadid, the architect who died this past week. Cathi toured her MAXXI project several years ago. Check out the pictures here. Meanwhile, Nora Young talks about a cool research project which uses data from sources like cell phones, FourSquare, and census info (via Technology Review). The researchers want to test Jane Jacobs' theories of urban vitality. Nora thinks it's cool and smart, but Cathi thinks it's just another example of the surrendering of 'human' approaches to the rule of technology. They are friends in the end, though! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7d59O6cfaM0 [iframe style="border:none" src="http://html5-player.libsyn.com/embed/episode/id/4266741/height/100/width/480/thumbnail/no/render-playlist/no/theme/standard" height="100" width="480" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen oallowfullscreen msallowfullscreen] Download MP3

Virtual Reality for Empathy and Future of Life Extension

On this podcast, Nora Young mentions "In the Eyes of the Animal" a virtual reality project from Marshmallow Laser Feast. The idea is to let you experience life in the forest through the eyes of animals (via Fast Company). Nora and Cathi chat about creative applications of VR for therapy or for empathy. There's so much about VR in the news lately, with Facebook saying it plans to continue to invest in the technology over the long term, and Netflix working with Samsung Gear on VR applications. Cathi Bond talks about the importance of recognizing our animal natures, and mentions this installation at High Park Condominiums. What uses would you like to see for VR? Meanwhile, Cathi Bond talks about Better Humans, a site she used to visit, which is now back in revitalized form, with funding from the Methuselah Foundation. Their goal is to work on healthy life extension and it's got Cathi and Nora talking about what a world of healthy old people might be like, and who might benefit if that were to come about. What do you think? [iframe style="border:none" src="http://html5-player.libsyn.com/embed/episode/id/3841998/height/100/width/480/thumbnail/no/theme/standard" height="100" width="480" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen oallowfullscreen msallowfullscreen] Download MP3 #VirtualReality #MarshmallowLaserFeast #BetterHumans #LifeExtension

Changing Your Mood with Tech. Making Your Own Avatar with Selfies

In this episode, Cathi Bond talks about Thync, a wearable that uses what they describe as "low-energy waveforms" to boost your energy or calm you down on demand, via patches that you place on your head. You can find helpful reviews here and especially here, where the journalist had a positive hands-on experience. Nora Young says this is part of a broader trend towards tech that targets brain states, especially for calm and focus, such as the Muse brain wave sensing headband, or the contemplative technology the Buddhist Geeks podcast talks about. Cathi's tempted to get Thync. Would you? Nora also references Kelly McGonigal's new book, The Upside of Stress. Meanwhile, how would you like to make your own realistic avatar using selfies? Nora talks about research from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology. You use your phone to take pictures of yourself from various angles, and shoot short videos of yourself, in order to create avatars that actually look (more or less) like you (via New Scientist). As we move into more VR spaces and situations, would you want to look like yourself, or an idealized version...or maybe a cartoon?   [iframe style="border:none" src="http://html5-player.libsyn.com/embed/episode/id/3807455/height/100/width/480/thumbnail/no/theme/standard" height="100" width="480" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen oallowfullscreen msallowfullscreen] Download MP3

Virtual Reality Hangouts, Healthy Vending Machine Food, Solving Mobile Keyboards

Algramo is a Santiago based company aiming to deliver inexpensive, healthy food to low income people in Latin America via vending machines (via PSFK). As in many parts of the world, food deserts mean people in urban low income areas can't get access to healthy food at reasonable prices. A solution for lots of communities? Cathi Bond weighs in. The future of virtual reality has long promised that we'd hang out together with our friends virtually, from the comfort of our separate living rooms. Maybe now that VR headsets are nearly ready to go, the time has (nearly) come! AltspaceVR is designing social hangouts for the VR future (via Technology Review). Would you do socialize with pals virtually? Go to concerts together? Or would you miss the meatspace connection? Plus, Cathi mentions TextBlade. If you don't like tapping things out on your mobile touchpad, this may be for you! [iframe style="border:none" src="http://html5-player.libsyn.com/embed/episode/id/3534063/height/100/width/480/thumbnail/no/theme/standard" height="100" width="480" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen oallowfullscreen msallowfullscreen] Download MP3

Trends in Virtual Reality and Annotating Text

Howdy! It's been a long time, but we are back with a new episode! This time around, after years - and years - of talking about virtual reality, and augmented reality, they're finally here, and that means figuring out how to actually make it work seamlessly in daily life. Researcher Pulkit Budhiraja and his colleagues have been thinking about a problem with virtual reality: how do you pick up physical, real world objects while you're in an immersive, virtual environment? (Via Technology Review) Nora Young also mentions the Reality Cave at Communitech. Has this happened to you? You get a link on social media that sounds like an interesting read, and then you're taken to a 5,000 word article? Great read, maybe, but so long! Cathi Bond talks about Pith.li, a sort of 'highlighter for the Internet' that allows you to share an article but highlight what you find interesting (via PSFK).