Currently, the term “ VR “ is used as a catch-all abbreviation for all manner of things to be experienced with 3D goggles on; recent advances in 3D user wear technology driven by the likes of the Oculus Rift, Sony PlayStation VR, Samsung Gear VR and HTC Vive. These are driving all types of users to consider the value and benefit of such a viewing / experiential platforms.
This is the critical value / benefit point in military circles and industrial scenarios and more importantly, its particular applications operational value in high risk / threat environments.
The core activity of VR Tech is to provide combinations of technology and immersive content which is focused on improving / enlarging training throughput < enlarging the simulation footprint > and effecting trainee performance , TTL [ time to learn ] improvement at military / industrial sites.
What VR is <Virtual Reality >
With the explosion of new devices and content, it might feel like virtual reality is something very new. (A similar thing happened with 3D a few years back.)
However, VR, at least in its modern made-for-consumers state, has been around since the ’90s. It’s just that now the technology has finally caught up with the goal: to transport users into another world that can be experienced and interacted with through the use of sensory devices.
Now, these virtual realities could look and feel like the real world, such as a flight simulator, or be completely artificial like an imagined distant planet, but in any case they’re computer generated. Through the use of VR headsets loaded with sensors that track your head and eye movements, you’re able to interact with and navigate through different environments as if you were actually in them.
This is the main thing that separates VR from 3D immersive multimedia content where you’re more of a spectator than a participant.
360° VIDEO [ 3D SPHERICAL IMMERSIVE VIDEOGRAPHY ]
360° videos are captured around the entire scene of an array of cameras arranged in a multi camera rig. When played back in a VR headset, it can feel immersive — but what you see is real footage, not a simulation. You can look around and even feel like you’re exploring the scenery, but you can’t interact with it much and you can’t travel within it. You’re limited to what cameras can record. It’s a new form of photography and filmmaking but note 360° video is not the same thing as VR.
Critically, for most of users today , 360° spherical content will be the first immersive “VR” experience they have. There is plenty of it already available, and the amount grows daily on YouTube and Facebook. Indeed most people who have experienced “VR” on a phone so far are talking about a 360° video they’ve seen, not a game. The amount of 360° video will continue to grow exponentially, too, made by professionals with high-end rigs as well as one of the many cameras coming this year for consumers. It also doesn’t require a new computer to enjoy.
360° video is an emerging medium initially designed for a mobile world. Viewers can explore the content beyond the frame and feel like they are in the scene, however the value and benefit for industrial and military uses may be far more compelling.
WHAT EXACTLY IS 360° VIDEO AND HOW DO YOU MAKE IT?
View 360° Video content from EVERY direction, from the SAME point in space” 360-degree video is a revolutionary step in video technology that creates truly immersive experience and unlimited opportunities for users and content creators. In a nutshell it is pre-filmed videography, which allows the viewer to see all 360º of the location that has been filmed.
Core Value and operational Benefit :
- Creates a series of 360° Videos to enable a Fully immersive Interactivity
- Creates a fully spherical view of reality (can also be 3D)
- Allows the user to choose the view angle of the camera
- High quality video (up to 6K)
- Highly effective in engaging trainees and operators
- Provides a fully synthetic immersive theatre for equipment / situational training
- Offers new experiential capability in high threat risk environments
One way of producing this IMMERSIVE content is by attaching anywhere from 6 to 10 (depending on the desired video quality) cameras to a monopod mount that points each one in a different direction.
The combination of “GoPro” like lightweight cameras with small bodies and wide-angle lenses make these ideal for shooting 360° video. The wide-angle and small form also mean that when mounted the combined footage equates to more than 360 degrees, creating an overlay, which is important when it comes to stitching the video footage together.
- POST PRODUCTION
Spherical video (VR) creates a highly effective environment for transferring knowledge. It has been shown to create a large amount of empathy within the user, making them “feel” like they are present in the situation.
This directly translates to be significantly more engaged and directly correlates to getting much more effectiveness.To be clear, 360° video can be cool, extraordinary and even transformative.
Virtual reality and 360° video both have a common factor: Like a good movie, both of them totally transport you to someplace else, be it computer generated or a real-life remote location. Augmented reality, on the other hand, blends your real-world environment with virtual objects that are perfectly inserted into your field of view.
The best example of this right now is Microsoft’s HoloLens system. The headset includes a camera, so you see the room around you — but inside the goggles, you’re also seeing giant spiders crashing through the wall. Or it could be something a lot more mundane, but more useful. However, Microsoft isn’t the only company working on AR.
Magic Leap. While the company’s hardware has yet to be seen in public, the stealthy Google-backed startup has released a few snippets of what it says is real-time demos, which little computer-generated robots peeking behind real-world office desks, and solar system models suspended in the middle of a room.
Whether it’s Microsoft, Magic Leap or as-yet-unknown developers, though, it’s this combination of the real world around you and computer-generated objects that sets AR apart from VR. Basically, it’s the difference between creating your own 3D world on your dining room table or transporting yourself into that world.
Telepresence < alternate, real-world environment >
OK, so far we have VR that transports you into a computer-generated world and AR that keeps you grounded in your current, real environment. Telepresence sort of twists both together by transporting you into an alternate, real-world environment. Think of it as a video conference call where you can continue the conversation as you walk — or roll — down the hall after the meeting ends.
As odd as it may be talking to an iPad on a stick with two wheels, telepresence robots like the Double, allow someone to actually be in an office or location while working remotely. The Web-connected robots are controlled via a mobile or browser app so you can be in an important meeting even if you’re on the other side of the world from where it’s physically taking place and actually turn to look at people as if your physical self were present.
Smartglasses and mobile head-up displays
So what is Google Glass, anyway? Glass was just a snap-on head-up display (HUD). It’s basically a shrunken down version of what you’d see in fighter jets and some cars, with data and mapping info projected onto the windshield or transparent display. But in the case of Glass, it’s a tiny display above the right eye. In reality, Google Glass was more like taping an Apple Watch to the side of your glasses. The confusion existed because of the many demo videos Google (and others) released which purported to show first-person views of the Glass experience. In fact, the product did not produce an AR-style overlay to the real world — it just allowed quick transitions between your viewpoint and your screen.
It sounds most useful when in niche environments — grabbing snippets of info without having to take your eyes off the issue at hand — that’s also why Glass is said to be living on with industrial applications. Think surgery, construction, aviation, and the like.
Personal viewers and virtual screens
Products like the Avegant Glyph may look like a VR headset, but they are more or less a high-tech way to watch movies or other video content. The category isn’t new, either: Devices such as the Sony HMZ-T1 and Zeiss Cinemizer OLED date back to 2012.
The Avegant Glyph can be plugged into anything with an HDMI output, either directly or via an adapter (such as Lightning connector to HDMI). It can handle 3D playback of side-by-side video content, and it does have head-mounted tracking for 360-degree videos, gameplay, and controlling drones. But, for now, the available content to take advantage of its full functionality is limited.
As VR / AR mature and real-world 3D spherical video is created to blend more into our virtual worlds, it is likely that we will see a splintering into even more categories and uses.
Critically, this could be a tipping point in the world of high threat services & training, nuclear, chemical and terrorist risk management.
The core activity of VR Tech to provide combinations of technology and immersive content which is focused on FM/VT and improving / enlarging training throughput < enlarging the sim footprint > and effecting training performance improvement < TTL > at military / industrial sites.
Increased throughput bandwidth by offering many more way of engaging with live subject matter < 3D goggles are flexible / cheaper than rooms based sim environments >
- Have 360 Video integrated into augmented reality platforms to really drive learning and training experiences?
- It offer improvement in the fidelity of experience of the real world > what is a threat how do I see it , deal with it … remember about it?
- Bring back real world threat / theatre content filmed on location in Syria, Iraq , Libya , Northern Ireland?
- Be used live in dealing with a threat make safe incident.?
- Relay an overseas threat to UK teams.?