Work Begins on the National Space Centre’s XR Lab

The past week has been a celebration of space exploration thanks to the 50th anniversary of the moon landings. So it’s fitting that the UK’s National Space Centre in Leicester has now begun work on a multi-million-pound development programme building The Extended Reality Laboratory (XR Lab). 

The XR lab has been made possible thanks to funding from the Inspiring Science Fund – a partnership between the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS), UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and Wellcome. Additional support came from the Local Growth Fund from Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership (LLEP), The Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 and The Garfield Weston Foundation. Continue reading

HTC Vive has Five Original VR Titles Chosen for the 76th Venice International Film Festival

The 76th Venice International Festival will take place at the end of August and HTC Vive has announced that five of its original virtual reality (VR) works will be on display.

HTC Vive - 5x1

The five original VR pieces are films 5×1 — O5×1 — Only the mountain remains and 5×1 — The Making of, interactive art INORI and VR animation Gloomy Eyes. 5×1 — O5×1 — Only the mountain remains, INORI and Gloomy Eyes have all been entered into the Venice VR Competition, going for awards including Best VR Immersive Work, Best VR Immersive Story for linear content and Best VR Immersive Experience for interactive content. Continue reading

Interview: Automotive Specialist Zerolight on Finessing Software Through Eye Tracking

With its headquarters in Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK, Zerolight is at the forefront of immersive visualisation techniques for the automotive industry, regularly showcasing its virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) developments. Earlier this month Develop:Brighton took place and VRFocus caught up with the Zerolight team to find out what was new.

HTC Vive Pro Eye - heatmap

One of the core aspects of Zerolight’s VR solution is to provide car manufacturers with an immersive system for customers to buy their products. This is a VR experience where they can finetune features of a car purchase, such as interior trim or various alloy designs. With this in mind, Zerolight continually looks to optimise the software via the use of eye-tracking and heatmaps. Continue reading

Take a Walk Through South Korea’s GDF 2019 Exhibition

While America seems to be the hub for virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) content – a great deal of news comes from there anyway – one country that’s wholeheartedly embraced these technologies is South Korea. This month saw the return of the Global Developers Conference (GDF) 2019, with both VR and AR having a bigger presence than ever. And VRFocus just so happened to be there to give you a look around the event.

GDF 2019 image1

With a theme called ‘Beyond Experience’ for 2019, the GDF conference wanted to look at the way art, technology and society are combined, with a lot of the event focused on panel discussions by some of the leading companies in the field. Continue reading

Thinking About Creating a Virtual Being? Applications now Open for Grants up to $25,000

Yesterday saw the launch of the first Virtual Beings Summit in San Francisco, a conference aimed at those interested in the idea of digital humans. As part of the event, the organisers announced the launch of the Virtual Beings Grants, an initiative designed to help fund creators with interesting ideas for a virtual being.

Virtual Beings Summit

The new programme will provide successful applicants with grants ranging from $1,000 to $25,000 USD depending on the idea. While creators projects can cover a range of Virtual Beings, whether that’s a Digital Human; Virtual Influencer, Virtual Assistant; Creative AIs, AI Tools for Virtual Beings or an Enterprise Virtual Being application, for example, there are four key grant categories applicants need to be aware of: Continue reading

Schell Games Awarded Almost $1m by US Dept of Education for VR Tool HistoryMaker VR

Pittsburgh-based Schell Games is probably best known to virtual reality (VR) fans through its escape room experience I Expect You to Dieyet the studio has a penchant for educational titles as well. Having previously released HoloLAB Championsthe studio has now secured funding for a VR tool called HistoryMaker VR, with the US Department of Education awarding the project almost $1 million USD.

HistoryMaker VR

Awarded as part of the Small Business Inno­va­tion Research (SBIR) programme from the Institute of Education Sciences (IES), Schell Games was one of only eight companies to have received Phase II funding for their projects in 2019, amounting to $900,000. Continue reading