Tag: oculus

AMD searches for artificial reality love

AMD, SunnyvaleAMD has been showing the Game Developer Conference in San Francisco its LiquidVR SDK that will help developers customise virtual reality content for AMD hardware.

AMD said that LiquidVR SDK makes a number of technologies available which help address obstacles in content, comfort and compatibility that together take the industry a major step closer to true, life-like presence across all VR games, applications, and experiences.

Its theory is that which company wins the war to make virtual reality worthwhile will be the outfit that can build the strongest sense of “presence.” This is jargon for the feeling you have of actually being in the virtual world.

Like most things computer geeky it can be determined by a maths formula which is based on the speed with which the virtual world (within your view) updates as you move.

If you physically turn your head but there’s even a short pause before your view updates in the virtual world, the sense of actually being in the world is lost.

Oculus has signed up for AMD’s LiquidVR SDK and Brendan Iribe, CEO of Oculus said that achieving presence in a virtual world continues to be one of the most important elements to delivering amazing VR.

“We’re excited to have AMD working with us on their part of the latency equation, introducing support for new features like asynchronous timewarp and late latching, and compatibility improvements that ensure that Oculus’ users have a great experience on AMD hardware.”

AMD showed off several features of the LiquidVR SDK at the conference, including Affinity Multi-GPU, which lets multiple GPUs work together in VR applications (important for framerate improvements) and asynchronous shaders for Hardware-Accelerated Time-Warp, which is meant to improve motion-to-photon latency, or your sense of presence.

London student possesses another’s body

ExorcistYifei Chai, a student at the Imperial College London, has worked out how to use virtual reality and 3D modelling hardware to “possess” another person.

Chai’s method does not involve vomit or turning heads, or even an invocation to the Prince of Darkness. One person wears a headmounted, twin-angle camera and attaches electrical stimulators to their body. Meanwhile, another person wears an Oculus Rift virtual reality headset streaming footage from their friend’s camera/view.

A Microsoft Kinect 3D sensor tracks the Rift wearer’s body. Chai’s system then shocks the appropriate muscles to force the possessed person to lift or lower their arms.

The person wearing the Rift looks down and sees another body, a body that moves when they move—giving the illusion of possessing another’s body.

It is all a bit rough at the moment. Watching the video there is a noticeable delay between action and reaction, which lessens the illusion’s effectiveness.

You can only control 34 arm and shoulder muscles and Chai’s thinks that he can improve it with high-definition versions of the Oculus Rift and Kinect to detect subtler movements.

One thing he thinks the idea might be used for is to encourage empathy by literally putting us in someone else’s shoes. A care worker, for example, might be less apt to become frustrated with a patient after experiencing their challenges first-hand.