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VR

Weighing approximately 3oz (85 grams), Vuzix Wrap 1200 offers twin 852 x 480 LCD true colo...

Vuzix has updated its line of video eyewear with its sleekest and, at 852 x 480 pixels, highest-res model yet - the Vuzix Wrap 1200. Compatible with both 2D and 3D content, the glasses can display an equivalent of 75-inch screen as seen from a distance of 10 feet (3 m) and feature separate focus adjustment for each eye as well as adjustable eye distance and viewing angles.  Read More

Forum8 demos driving simulator at 3D and VR Expo

At the 3D and VR Expo in Tokyo, Japanese company Forum8 demonstrated the company's UC-win/Road Drive Simulator software. The software allows for custom maps and environments to be created according to your specifications. You can control the environment and location, the terrain and street layout. You can even adjust the traffic, weather conditions, and even time of day. The minute details in the graphics are impressive, even showing barely noticeable elements such as the signal lights on individual vehicles.  Read More

Air Hair: Virtual Reality haircut simulator

At the 3D and VR Expo in Tokyo last week, a team from the Tokyo Institute of Technology were demonstrating a virtual reality haircut simulator. With a real scissors mechanism and a physical dummy, the simulator would display the virtual hair on screen which falls to the ground as you trim it.  Read More

Honda's 2009 CRF450R

Honda's CRF450R motocross bike has been hugely successful since its launch in 2002 - and although the bike is already recognized as the class leader, it's receiving a kitchen-sink included upgrade for 2009. Lighter, quicker, more powerful and with even tighter mass centralization for quick handling, the 2009 CRF450R also sports a Honda first - battery-free, programmable fuel injection that raises output power and control while dramatically reducing fuel consumption. Out of the box, Honda says it's two seconds faster around a supercross track than this year's bike.  Read More

Z800 3DVisor

eMagin's Z800 3DVisor uses two OLED microdisplays to provide wearers with the 3D equivalent of a 105-inch display viewed at 12 feet’s distance. Drawing its power entirely from a USB connection, the Z800 3DVisor integrates the SVGA 3D OLED microdisplays with stereo audio, a noise canceling microphone, and a high-speed headtracker that enables full 360-degree virtual-surround viewing.  Read More

Eball sports simulator goes mobile and inflatable

May 18, 2007 You may recall our enthusiasm last year when we reported on eballgames and its development of an interface between a real ball and ball games – think of it as a CHI (Computer Human Interface) for any real world ball game and you’re close. Motion and speed sensors take your kick, throw or golf swing and play out the results on the big screen, for better or worse. The crowd will roar or express their disappointment, and the commentator gives you a pat on the back or a serve for missing. The ball goes into a net and is ready for the next player to have a go. It's simple, quick fun and it continually breaks records for drawing crowds wherever it is installed. Now the company has taken its VR sports simulator and developed it into a number of inflatable structures so the promotional killer-app can be quickly set up anywhere, indoors or outdoors. Eballgames is already working on many different sports and is keen to discuss development opportunities with interested parties. We see it as the ultimate Wii peripheral for kids that want to play ball games. Indeed, there’s plenty of opportunity for the development of remedial and skills development games using this technology.  Read More

Stringwalker enables realistic walking in Virtual worlds

May 2, 2007 Though Virtual Reality (VR) is moving quickly towards realism on many fronts, one of the major problems in creating a realistic immersive experience is that of walking. If people walk around with a VR headset on, they will eventually bump into something hard and unforgiving – so researchers across the world are questing for a suitable device which offers proprioceptive feedback for VR walking. The human brain seems happy to suspend disbelief and accept many crude kludges in order to roleplay along with a VR event, but the missing factor has been the ability to give the body the same sort of corresponding feedback as the brain. You can’t simulate true human movement with any authenticity without the exertion normally accompanying it. We’ve previously written up two ingenious attempts to enable VR users to maintain their position while walking in virtual environments in the form of the commercially-available Virtusphere and a set of powered shoes being developed at the University of Tsukuba in Japan. Now there’s another clever solution being developed at the same university – the Stringwalker. String Walker uses eight strings actuated by motor-pulley mechanisms mounted on a turntable.  Read More

ITER, the Fusion Device and the Remote Operation and Virtual Reality Centre

November 29, 2006 Every country should have one – it’s the US$10 Billion ITER Fusion Test Reactor currently being constructed in the South of France to provide the know-how to subsequently build the first electricity-generating power station based on magnetic confinement of high temperature plasma - in other words, to capture and use the power of the sun on earth for peaceful purposes. ITER is something to be proud of – it is a joint international research and development project that aims to demonstrate the scientific and technical feasibility of fusion as a source of power for mankind – ample power would significantly lessen the chance of war. The partners in the project are the European Union (represented by EURATOM), Japan, China, India, South Korea, the Russian Federation and America. On earth, the aim is to harness this energy source to produce electricity in a safe and environmentally benign way, with abundant fuel resources, to meet the needs of a growing world population. Ministers from the ITER parties came together recently to sign the agreement to establish the organization and it’s very likely these pictures will be in school text books a thousand years from now . The signature ceremony took place at the Elysée Palace in Paris and was hosted by the President Jacques Chirac and by the President of the European Commission, M. Jose Manuel Durao Barroso. ITER Director General Nominee Kaname Ikeda said the meeting, the ITER Organization would now embark on “its mission, as a worldwide international cooperation, to help create a new source of energy for humankind”. We’re not sure if we’re more excited about the FUSION device or the Remote Operation and Virtual Reality Centre (ROViR) development centre where the test equipment is located. ROViR develops industrial design and control systems, tapping the expertise of VTT and TUT's hydraulics and automation department. Remote operation and virtual technologies play a central role in the maintenance of the ITER reactor, but they also possess huge application potential for industry.  Read More

Powered Shoes - another breakthrough Virtual Reality interface

June 30, 2006 Each year the place to be for anyone in computer graphics, animation and virtual reality is the SIGGRAPH conference which will be held in Boston (July 30-August 3) this year and some of the incredible exhibits planned are just beginning to come to light. One that really captures our imagination is this set of powered shoes developed by Hiroshi Tomioka and Hiroaki Yano at the University of Tsukuba in Japan. The University of Tsukuba is a hotbed of research with a lot of development of virtual reality interfaces underway. The Powered Shoes are just one of a number of projects designed to enable a person to realistically move through a virtual world without needing to move from the spot. Working like reverse roller-skates, the Powered Shoes effectively cancel the horizontal displacement of the user as they are driven from electrical motors in a backpack worn by the user, enabling omni-directional walking while maintaining the wearer's position. As such, the powered shoes are an important advancement in the world of entertainment and simulation and are the only viable alternative we have seen capable of emulating the capabilities of the landmark Virtusphere,  Read More

The VirtuSphere: full body immersion Virtual reality at last

The VirtuSphere is a new platform that is a breakthrough in the science of Virtual Reality and one we are convinced will take VR into the broader community. It is that significant and more because it is the solution for a million problems offering more compelling, convincing and relevant VR experiences than any device yet conceived, and with VR advancing rapidly in its other constituent areas (graphics, sound, touch, and to a lesser extent, smell and taste), we believe the VirtuSphere will be the device to make VR relevant to the world – this is a killer app. Inside the VirtuSphere, the virtual explorer can physically navigate the virtual world with genuine human movement, - the headset is wireless, and senses 360 degree movement, but unlike any existing virtual reality or gaming peripheral, the floor moves and each virtual step is accompanied by a real one of the same dimensions. It promises to be the ultimate computer games peripheral, the ultimate treadmill at the gymnasium, the ultimate educational resource with remarkable flexibility and offer the most realistic virtual experience of almost any kind - enabling you to walk through the house you’re hiring across the world for your holidays or explore the Daintree Rainforest. It also has major occupational training implications as it offers experiential learning for everyone from athletes to fire fighters and is already being developed by the military for training crack troops and saving lives on the battlefield. Like we said, this is significant!  Read More

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