China’s New Frontiers in Dystopian Tech — from by Rene Chun
Facial-recognition technologies are proliferating, from airports to bathrooms.


China is rife with face-scanning technology worthy of Black Mirror. Don’t even think about jaywalking in Jinan, the capital of Shandong province. Last year, traffic-management authorities there started using facial recognition to crack down. When a camera mounted above one of 50 of the city’s busiest intersections detects a jaywalker, it snaps several photos and records a video of the violation. The photos appear on an overhead screen so the offender can see that he or she has been busted, then are cross-checked with the images in a regional police database. Within 20 minutes, snippets of the perp’s ID number and home address are displayed on the crosswalk screen. The offender can choose among three options: a 20-yuan fine (about $3), a half-hour course in traffic rules, or 20 minutes spent assisting police in controlling traffic. Police have also been known to post names and photos of jaywalkers on social media.

The technology’s veneer of convenience conceals a dark truth: Quietly and very rapidly, facial recognition has enabled China to become the world’s most advanced surveillance state. A hugely ambitious new government program called the “social credit system” aims to compile unprecedented data sets, including everything from bank-account numbers to court records to internet-search histories, for all Chinese citizens. Based on this information, each person could be assigned a numerical score, to which points might be added for good behavior like winning a community award, and deducted for bad actions like failure to pay a traffic fine. The goal of the program, as stated in government documents, is to “allow the trustworthy to roam everywhere under heaven while making it hard for the discredited to take a single step.”





The Space Satellite Revolution Could Turn Earth into a Surveillance Nightmare — from by Becky Ferreira
Laser communication between satellites is revolutionizing our ability to track climate change, manage resources, and respond to natural disasters. But there are downsides to putting Earth under a giant microscope.


And while universal broadband has the potential to open up business and education opportunities to hundreds of thousands of people, it’s the real-time satellite feeds of earth that may have both the most immediate and widespread financial upsides — and the most frightening surveillance implications — for the average person here on earth.

Among the industries most likely to benefit from laser communications between these satellites are agriculture and forestry.

Satellite data can also be used to engage the public in humanitarian efforts. In the wake of Typhoon Haiyan, DigitalGlobe launched online crowdsourcing campaigns to map damage and help NGOs respond on the ground. And they’ve been identifying vulnerable communities in South Sudan as the nation suffers through unrest and famine.

In an age of intensifying natural disasters, combining these tactics with live satellite video feeds could mean the difference between life and death for thousands of people.

Should a company, for example, be able to use real-time video feeds to track your physical location, perhaps in order to better target advertising? Should they be able to use facial recognition and sentiment analysis algorithms to assess your reactions to those ads in real time?

While these commercially available images aren’t yet sharp enough to pick up intimate details like faces or phone screens, it’s foreseeable that regulations will be eased to accommodate even sharper images. That trend will continue to prompt privacy concerns, especially if a switch to laser-based satellite communication enables near real-time coverage at high resolutions.

A kaleidoscopic swirl of possible futures confronts us, filled with scenarios where law enforcement officials could rewind satellite footage to identify people at a crime scene, or on a more familial level, parents could remotely watch their kids — or keep tabs on each other — from space. In that world, it’s not hard to imagine privacy becoming even more of a commodity, with wealthy enclaves lobbying to be erased from visual satellite feeds, in a geospatial version of “gated communities.”



From DSC:
The pros and cons of technologies…hmmm…this article nicely captures the pluses and minuses that societies around the globe need to be aware of, struggle with, and discuss with each other. Some exciting things here, but some disturbing things here as well.




Virtual reality technology enters a Chinese courtroom — from by Jiayun Feng


The introduction of VR technology is part of a “courtroom evidence visualization system” developed by the local court. The system also includes a newly developed computer program that allows lawyers to present evidence with higher quality and efficiency, which will replace a traditional PowerPoint slideshow.

It is reported that the system will soon be implemented in courtrooms across the city of Beijing.




Watch Waymo’s Virtual-Reality View of the World — from by Philip Ross

From DSC:
This is mind blowing. Now I see why Nvidia’s products/services are so valuable.



Along these same lines, also see this clip and/or this article entitled, This is why AR and Autonomous Driving are the Future of Cars:




The Legal Hazards of Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality Apps — from by Tam Harbert
Liability and intellectual property issues are just two areas developers need to know about


As virtual- and augmented-reality technologies mature, legal questions are emerging that could trip up VR and AR developers. One of the first lawyers to explore these questions is Robyn Chatwood, of the international law firm Dentons. “VR and AR are areas where the law is just not keeping up with [technology] developments,” she says. IEEE Spectrum contributing editor Tam Harbert talked with Chatwood about the legal challenges.




This VR Tool Could Make Kids A Lot Less Scared Of Medical Procedures — from by Daniel Terdiman
The new app creates a personalized, explorable 3D model of a kid’s own body that makes it much easier for them to understand what’s going on inside.


A new virtual reality app that’s designed to help kids suffering from conditions like Crohn’s disease understand their maladies immerses those children in a cartoon-like virtual reality tour through their body.

Called HealthVoyager, the tool, a collaboration between Boston Children’s Hospital and the health-tech company Klick Health, is being launched today at an event featuring former First Lady Michelle Obama.

A lot of kids are confused by doctors’ intricate explanations of complex procedures like a colonoscopy, and they, and their families, can feel much more engaged, and satisfied, if they really understand what’s going on. But that’s been hard to do in a way that really works and doesn’t get bogged down with a lot of meaningless jargon.



Augmented Reality in Education — from


Star Chart -- AR and astronomy



The state of virtual reality — from by Rachael Schultz
How the latest advancements are optimizing performance, recovery, and injury prevention


Virtual reality is increasingly used to enhance everything from museum exhibits to fitness classes. Elite athletes are using VR goggles to refine their skills, sports rehabilitation clinics are incorporating it into recovery regimes, and others are using it to improve focus and memory.

Here, some of the most exciting things happening with virtual reality, as well as what’s to come.



Augmented Reality takes 3-D printing to next level — from


Cornell researchers are taking 3-D printing and 3-D modeling to a new level by using augmented reality (AR) to allow designers to design in physical space while a robotic arm rapidly prints the work. To use the Robotic Modeling Assistant (RoMA), a designer wears an AR headset with hand controllers. As soon as a design feature is completed, the robotic arm prints the new feature.




From DSC:
How might the types of technologies being developed and used by Kazendi’s Holomeeting be used for building/enhancing learning spaces?





AR and Blockchain: A Match Made in The AR Cloud — from by Ori Inbar


In my introduction to the AR Cloud I argued that in order to reach mass adoption, AR experiences need to persist in the real world across space, time, and devices.

To achieve that, we will need a persistent realtime spatial map of the world that enables sharing and collaboration of AR Experiences among many users.

And according to AR industry insiders, it’s poised to become:

“the most important software infrastructure in computing”

aka: The AR Cloud.





From DSC:
Why aren’t we further along with lecture recording within K-12 classrooms?

That is, I as a parent — or much better yet, our kids themselves who are still in K-12 — should be able to go online and access whatever talks/lectures/presentations were given on a particular day. When our daughter is sick and misses several days, wouldn’t it be great for her to be able to go out and see what she missed? Even if we had the time and/or the energy to do so (which we don’t), my wife and I can’t present this content to her very well. We would likely explain things differently — and perhaps incorrectly — thus, potentially muddying the waters and causing more confusion for our daughter.

There should be entry level recording studios — such as the One Button Studio from Penn State University — in each K-12 school for teachers to record their presentations. At the end of each day, the teacher could put a checkbox next to what he/she was able to cover that day. (No rushing intended here — as education is enough of a run-away train often times!) That material would then be made visible/available on that day as links on an online-based calendar. Administrators should pay teachers extra money in the summer times to record these presentations.

Also, students could use these studios to practice their presentation and communication skills. The process is quick and easy:





I’d like to see an option — ideally via a brief voice-driven Q&A at the start of each session — that would ask the person where they wanted to put the recording when it was done: To a thumb drive, to a previously assigned storage area out on the cloud/Internet, or to both destinations?

Providing automatically generated close captioning would be a great feature here as well, especially for English as a Second Language (ESL) students.




From DSC:
After seeing the article entitled, “Scientists Are Turning Alexa into an Automated Lab Helper,” I began to wonder…might Alexa be a tool to periodically schedule & provide practice tests & distributed practice on content? In the future, will there be “learning bots” that a learner can employ to do such self-testing and/or distributed practice?



From page 45 of the PDF available here:


Might Alexa be a tool to periodically schedule/provide practice tests & distributed practice on content?




What is Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Deep Learning — from by Meenal Dhande







What is the difference between AI, machine learning and deep learning? — from by Meenal Dhande


In the first part of this blog series, we gave you simple and elaborative definitions of what is artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and deep learning. This is the second part of the series; here we are elucidating our readers with – What is the difference between AI, machine learning, and deep learning.

You can think of artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and deep learning as a set of a matryoshka doll, also known as a Russian nesting doll. Deep learning is a subset of machine learning, which is a subset of AI.






Chatbot for College Students: 4 Chatbots Tips Perfect for College Students — from by Zevik Farkash


1. Feed your chatbot with information your students don’t have.
Your institute’s website can be as elaborate as it gets, but if your students can’t find a piece of information on it, it’s as good as incomplete. Say, for example, you offer certain scholarships that students can voluntarily apply for. But the information on these scholarships are tucked away on a remote page that your students don’t access in their day-to-day usage of your site.

So Amy, a new student, has no idea that there’s a scholarship that can potentially make her course 50% cheaper. She can scour your website for details when she finds the time. Or she can ask your university’s chatbot, “Where can I find information on your scholarships?”

And the chatbot can tell her, “Here’s a link to all our current scholarships.”

The best chatbots for colleges and universities tend to be programmed with even more detail, and can actually strike up a conversation by saying things like:

“Please give me the following details so I can pull out all the scholarships that apply to you.
“Which department are you in? (Please select one.)
“Which course are you enrolled in? (Please select one.)
“Which year of study are you in? (Please select one.)
“Thank you for the details! Here’s a list of all applicable scholarships. Please visit the links for detailed information and let me know if I can be of further assistance.”

2. Let it answer all the “What do I do now?” questions.

3. Turn it into a campus guide.

4. Let it take care of paperwork.


From DSC:
This is the sort of thing that I was trying to get at last year at the NGLS 2017 Conference:





18 Disruptive Technology Trends For 2018 — from by Rob Prevett


1. Mobile-first to AI-first
A major shift in business thinking has placed Artificial Intelligence at the very heart of business strategy. 2017 saw tech giants including Google and Microsoft focus on an“AI first” strategy, leading the way for other major corporates to follow suit. Companies are demonstrating a willingness to use AI and related tools like machine learning to automate processes, reduce administrative tasks, and collect and organise data. Understanding vast amounts of information is vital in the age of mass data, and AI is proving to be a highly effective solution. Whilst AI has been vilified in the media as the enemy of jobs, many businesses have undergone a transformation in mentalities, viewing AI as enhancing rather than threatening the human workforce.

7. Voice based virtual assistants become ubiquitous
Google HomeThe wide uptake of home based and virtual assistants like Alexa and Google Home have built confidence in conversational interfaces, familiarising consumers with a seamless way of interacting with tech. Amazon and Google have taken prime position between brand and customer, capitalising on conversational convenience. The further adoption of this technology will enhance personalised advertising and sales, creating a direct link between company and consumer.



5 Innovative Uses for Machine Learning — from
They’ll be coming into your life — at least your business life — sooner than you think.



Philosophers are building ethical algorithms to help control self-driving cars – from by Olivia Goldhill



Tech’s Ethical ‘Dark Side’: Harvard, Stanford and Others Want to Address It — from by Natasha Singerfeb


PALO ALTO, Calif. — The medical profession has an ethic: First, do no harm.

Silicon Valley has an ethos: Build it first and ask for forgiveness later.

Now, in the wake of fake news and other troubles at tech companies, universities that helped produce some of Silicon Valley’s top technologists are hustling to bring a more medicine-like morality to computer science.

This semester, Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are jointly offering a new course on the ethics and regulation of artificial intelligence. The University of Texas at Austin just introduced a course titled “Ethical Foundations of Computer Science” — with the idea of eventually requiring it for all computer science majors.

And at Stanford University, the academic heart of the industry, three professors and a research fellow are developing a computer science ethics course for next year. They hope several hundred students will enroll.

The idea is to train the next generation of technologists and policymakers to consider the ramifications of innovations — like autonomous weapons or self-driving cars — before those products go on sale.





Hacking Real-World Problems with Virtual and Augmented Reality — from by Mary Grush
A Q&A with Tilanka Chandrasekera


Oklahoma State University’s first inaugural “Virtual + Augmented Reality Hackathon” hosted January 26-27 by the Mixed Reality Lab in the university’s College of Human Sciences gave students and the community a chance to tackle real-world problems using augmented and virtual reality tools, while offering researchers a glimpse into the ways teams work with digital media tools. Campus Technology asked Dr. Tilanka Chandrasekera, an assistant professor in the department of Design, Housing and Merchandising at Oklahoma State University about the hackathon and how it fits into the school’s broader goals.


Also, on a different note, but also involving emerging technologies, see:
Campus Technology News Now Available on Alexa Devices — from by Rhea Kelly


To set up the audio feed, use the Alexa mobile app to search for “Campus Technology News” in the Alexa Skills catalog. Once you enable the skill, you can ask Alexa “What’s in the news?” or “What’s my Flash Briefing?” and she will read off the latest news briefs from Campus Technology.




A WMU Professor Is Using Microsoft’s HoloLens AR Technology to Teach Aviation — from by Henry Kronk


Computer simulations are nothing new in the field of aviation education. But a new partnership between Western Michigan University and Microsoft is taking that one big step further. Microsoft has selected Lori Brown, an associate professor of aviation at WMU, to test out their new HoloLens, the world’s first self-contained holographic computer. The augmented reality interface will bring students a little closer to the realities of flight.

When it comes to the use of innovative technology in the classroom, this is by no means Professor Brown’s first rodeo. She has spent years researching the uses of virtual and augmented reality in aviation education.

“In the past 16 years that I’ve been teaching advanced aircraft systems, I have identified many gaps in the tools and equipment available to me as a professor. Ultimately, mixed reality bridges the gap between simulation, the aircraft and the classroom,” Brown told WMU News.








VR and AR: The Art of Immersive Storytelling and Journalism — from by Emory Craig and Maya Georgieva


Storytelling traces its roots back to the very beginning of human experience. It’s found its way through multiple forms, from oral traditions to art, text, images, cinema, and multimedia formats on the web.

As we move into a world of immersive technologies, how will virtual and augmented reality transform storytelling? What roles will our institutions and students play as early explorers? In the traditional storytelling format, a narrative structure is presented to a listener, reader, or viewer. In virtual reality, in contrast, you’re no longer the passive witness. As Chris Milk said, “In the future, you will be the character. The story will happen to you.”

If the accepted rules of storytelling are undermined, we find ourselves with a remarkably creative opportunity no longer bound by the rectangular frame of traditional media.

We are in the earliest stages of virtual reality as an art form. The exploration and experimentation with immersive environments is so nascent that new terms have been proposed for immersive storytelling. Abigail Posner, the head of strategic planning at Google Zoo, said that it totally “shatters” the storytelling experience and refers to it as “storyliving.” At the Tribeca Film Festival, immersive stories are termed “storyscapes.”





Virtual Reality in Education: How VR can be Beneficial to the Classroom — from by Coralie Hentsch


Learning through a virtual experience
The concept to use VR as an educational tool has been gaining success amongst teachers and students, who apply the medium to a wide range of activities and in a variety of subjects. Many schools start with a simple cardboard viewer such as the Google cardboard, available for less than $10 and enough to play with simple VRs.

A recent study by Foundry10 analyzed how students perceived the usage of VR in their education and in what subjects they saw it being the most useful. According to the report, 44% of students were interested in using VR for science education, 38% for history education, 12% for English education, 3% for math education, and 3% for art education.

Among the many advantages brought by VR, the aspect that generally comes first when discussing the new technology is the immersion made possible by entering a 360° and 3-dimensional virtual space. This immersive aspect offers a different perception of the content being viewed, which enables new possibilities in education.

Schools today seem to be getting more and more concerned with making their students “future-ready.” By bringing the revolutionary medium of VR to the classroom and letting kids experiment with it, they help prepare them for the digital world in which they will grow and later start a career.

Last but not least, the new medium also adds a considerable amount of fun to the classroom as students get excited to receive the opportunity, sometimes for the first time, to put a headset viewer on and try VR.

VR also has the potential to stimulate enthusiasm within the classroom and increase students’ engagement. Several teachers have reported that they were impressed by the impact on students’ motivation and in some cases, even on their new perspective toward learning matter.

These teachers explained that when put in control of creating a piece of content and exposed to the fascinating new medium of VR, some of their students showed higher levels of participation and in some cases, even better retention of the information.


“The good old reality is no longer best practice in teaching. Worksheets and book reports do not foster imagination or inspire kids to connect with literature. I want my students to step inside the characters and the situations they face, I want them to visualize the setting and the elements of conflict in the story that lead to change.”






What really is the difference between AR / MR / VR / XR? — from by North of 41


Extended Reality (XR)
Extended Reality (XR) is a newly added term to the dictionary of the technical words. For now, only a few people are aware of XR. Extended Reality refers to all real-and-virtual combined environments and human-machine interactions generated by computer technology and wearables. Extended Reality includes all its descriptive forms like the Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), Mixed Reality (MR). In other words, XR can be defined as an umbrella, which brings all three Reality (AR, VR, MR) together under one term, leading to less public confusion. Extended reality provides a wide variety and vast number of levels in the Virtuality of partially sensor inputs to Immersive Virtuality.

Since past few years, we have been talking regarding AR, VR, and MR, and probably in coming years, we will be speaking about XR.


Summary: VR is immersing people into a completely virtual environment ; AR is creating an overlay of virtual content, but can’t interact with the environment; MR is a mixed of virtual reality and the reality, it creates virtual objects that can interact with the actual environment. XR brings all three Reality (AR, VR, MR) together under one term.




Audi AR App Brings Advertising Into Your Living Room — from by Joe Durbin


Audi has released a new AR smartphone application that is triggered by their TV commercials. The app brings the cars from the commercial out of the screen and into your living room or driveway.

According to a release from the company, the Audi quattro coaster AR application “recognizes” specific Audi TV commercials. If the right commercial is playing, it will then trigger a series of AR events.


From DSC:
How might this type of setup be used for learning-related applications?




Will Augmented and Virtual Reality Replace Textbooks? — from by Michael Mathews
Students who are conceptual and visual learners can grasp concepts through AVR, which in turn allows textbooks to make sense.


This past year, Tulsa TV-2, an NBC News affiliate, did a great story on the transition in education through the eyes of professors and students who are using augmented and virtual reality. As you watch the news report you will notice the following:
  • Professors will quickly embrace technology that directly impacts student success.
  • Students are more engaged and learn quicker through visual stimulation.
  • Grades can be immediately improved with augmented and virtual reality.
  • An international and global reach is possible with stimulating technology.



How augmented and virtual reality will reshape the food industry — from by Jenny Dorsey

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

Within the food industry, AR and VR have also begun to make headway. Although development costs are still high, more and more F&B businesses are beginning to realize the potential of AR/VR and see it as a worthwhile investment. Three main areas – human resources, customer experiences, food products – have seen the most concentration of AR/VR development so far and will likely continue to push the envelope on what use cases AR & VR have within the industry.




The Future of Education Can Be Found Within This AR Tablet — from


Hologram-like 3D images offer new ways to study educational models in science and other subjects. zSpace has built a tablet that uses a stylus and glasses to allow students to have interactive learning experiences. Technology like this not only makes education more immersive and captivating, but also can provide more accurate models for students in professional fields like medicine.



Architecture, Engineering and Construction Embrace VR — from




The Washington Post’s latest augmented reality game brings the Winter Olympics into your living room — from by Caroline Scott
The publisher hopes the game will help audiences better engage with the different sports while becoming more familiar with AR technology





Augmented Reality Skates into New York Times Coverage of Winter Olympics — from by Tommy Palladino


Just days after previewing its augmented reality content strategy, the Times has already delivered on its promise to unveil its first official AR coverage, centered on the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in PyeongChang. When viewed through the NYTimes app for iPhones and iPads, the “Four of the World’s Best Olympians, as You’ve Never Seen Them Before” article displays AR content embedded at regular intervals as readers scroll along.



AR Magic Portal—The Beginning Of Your Next New Adventure — from




Tokyo Government uses VR to Promote Tourism — from




Is VR the Next Big Thing in Retail? — from by Sophia Brooke


Retail IT is still in its infancy and is yet to become general practice, but given the popularity of video, the immersive experience will undoubtedly catch on. The explanation lies in the fact that the wealth of information and the extensive range of products on offer are overwhelming for consumers. Having the opportunity to try products by touching a button in an environment that feels real is what can make the shopping experience more animated and less stressful. Also, through VR, even regular customers can experience VIP treatment at no additional cost. Sitting in the front row at the Paris Fashion Week without leaving your local mall or, soon, your own house, will become the norm.





You can now build Amazon Music playlists using voice commands on Alexa devices — from by Natt Garun


Amazon today announced that Amazon Music listeners can now build playlists using voice commands via Alexa. For example, if they’re streaming music from an app or listening to the radio on an Alexa-enabled device, they can use voice commands to add the current song to a playlist, or start a new playlist from scratch.


From DSC:
I wonder how long it will be before we will be able to create and share learning-based playlists for accessing digitally-based resources…? Perhaps AI will be used to offer a set of playlists on any given topic…?

With the exponential pace of change that we’re starting to experience — plus the 1/2 lives of information shrinking — such features could come in handy.






Where You’ll Find Virtual Reality Technology in 2018 — from by Alec Kasper-Olson


The VR / AR / MR Breakdown
This year will see growth in a variety of virtual technologies and uses. There are differences and similarities between virtual, augmented, and mixed reality technologies. The technology is constantly evolving and even the terminology around it changes quickly, so you may hear variations on these terms.

Augmented reality is what was behind the Pokémon Go craze. Players could see game characters on their devices superimposed over images of their physical surroundings. Virtual features seemed to exist in the real world.

Mixed reality combines virtual features and real-life objects. So, in this way it includes AR but it also includes environments where real features seem to exist in a virtual world.

The folks over at Recode explain mixed reality this way:

In theory, mixed reality lets the user see the real world (like AR) while also seeing believable, virtual objects (like VR). And then it anchors those virtual objects to a point in real space, making it possible to treat them as “real,” at least from the perspective of the person who can see the MR experience.

And, virtual reality uses immersive technology to seemingly place a user into a simulated lifelike environment.

Where You’ll Find These New Realities
Education and research fields are at the forefront of VR and AR technologies, where an increasing number of students have access to tools. But higher education isn’t the only place you see this trend. The number of VR companies grew 250 percent between 2012 and 2017. Even the latest iPhones include augmented reality capabilities. Aside from the classroom and your pocket, here are some others places you’re likely to see VR and AR pop up in 2018.




Top AR apps that make learning fun — from


Here is a list of a few amazing Augmented Reality mobile apps for children:

  • Jigspace
  • Elements 4D
  • Arloon Plants
  • Math alive
  • PlanetAR Animals
  • FETCH! Lunch Rush
  • Quiver
  • Zoo Burst
  • PlanetAR Alphabets & Numbers

Here are few of the VR input devices include:

  • Controller Wands
  • Joysticks
  • Force Balls/Tracking Balls
  • Data Gloves
  • On-Device Control Buttons
  • Motion Platforms (Virtuix Omni)
  • Trackpads
  • Treadmills
  • Motion Trackers/Bodysuits




HTC VIVE and World Economic Forum Partner For The Future Of The “VR/AR For Impact” Initiative — from by Matthew Gepp


VR/AR for Impact experiences shown this week at WEF 2018 include:

  • OrthoVR aims to increase the availability of well-fitting prosthetics in low-income countries by using Virtual Reality and 3D rapid prototyping tools to increase the capacity of clinical staff without reducing quality. VR allows current prosthetists and orthosists to leverage their hands-on and embodied skills within a digital environment.
  • The Extraordinary Honey Bee is designed to help deepen our understanding of the honey bee’s struggle and learn what is at stake for humanity due to the dying global population of the honey bee. Told from a bee’s perspective, The Extraordinary Honey Bee harnesses VR to inspire change in the next generation of honey bee conservationists.
  • The Blank Canvas: Hacking Nature is an episodic exploration of the frontiers of bioengineering as taught by the leading researchers within the field. Using advanced scientific visualization techniques, the Blank Canvas will demystify the cellular and molecular mechanisms that are being exploited to drive substantial leaps such as gene therapy.
  • LIFE (Life-saving Instruction For Emergencies) is a new mobile and VR platform developed by the University of Oxford that enables all types of health worker to manage medical emergencies. Through the use of personalized simulation training and advanced learning analytics, the LIFE platform offers the potential to dramatically extend access to life-saving knowledge in low-income countries.
  • Tree is a critically acclaimed virtual reality experience to immerse viewers in the tragic fate that befalls a rainforest tree. The experience brings to light the harrowing realities of deforestation, one of the largest contributors to global warming.
  • For the Amazonian Yawanawa, ‘medicine’ has the power to travel you in a vision to a place you have never been. Hushuhu, the first woman shaman of the Yawanawa, uses VR like medicine to open a portal to another way of knowing. AWAVENA is a collaboration between a community and an artist, melding technology and transcendent experience so that a vision can be shared, and a story told of a people ascending from the edge of extinction.




Everything You Need To Know About Virtual Reality Technology — from


Types of Virtual Reality Technology
We can segregate the type of Virtual Reality Technology according to their user experience

Non-immersive simulations are the least immersion implementation of Virtual Reality Technology.
In this kind of simulation, only a subset of the user’s senses is replicated, allowing for marginal awareness of the reality outside the VR simulation. A user enters into 3D virtual environments through a portal or window by utilizing standard HD monitors typically found on conventional desktop workstations.

Semi Immersive
In this simulation, users experience a more rich immersion, where a user partly, not fully involved in a virtual environment. Semi immersive simulations are based on high-performance graphical computing, which is often coupled with large screen projector systems or multiple TV projections to properly simulate the user’s visuals.

Fully immersive
Offers the full immersive experience to the user of Virtual Reality Technology, in this phase of VR head-mounted displays and motion sensing devices are used to simulate all of the user senses. In this situation, a user can experience the realistic virtual environment, where a user can experience a wide view field, high resolutions, increased refresh rates and a high quality of visualization through HMD.







This Is What A Mixed Reality Hard Hat Looks Like — from by  Alice Bonasio
A Microsoft-endorsed hard hat solution lets construction workers use holograms on site.


These workers already routinely use technology such as tablets to access plans and data on site, but going from 2D to 3D at scale brings that to a whole new level. “Superimposing the digital model on the physical environment provides a clear understanding of the relations between the 3D design model and the actual work on a jobsite,” explained Olivier Pellegrin, BIM manager, GA Smart Building.

The application they are using is called Trimble Connect. It turns data into 3D holograms, which are then mapped out to scale onto the real-world environment. This gives workers an instant sense of where and how various elements will fit and exposes mistakes early on in the process.


Also see:

Trimble Connect for HoloLens is a mixed reality solution that improves building coordination by combining models from multiple stakeholders such as structural, mechanical and electrical trade partners. The solution provides for precise alignment of holographic data on a 1:1 scale on the job site, to review models in the context of the physical environment. Predefined views from Trimble Connect further simplify in-field use with quick and easy access to immersive visualizations of 3D data. Users can leverage mixed reality for training purposes and to compare plans against work completed. Advanced visualization further enables users to view assigned tasks and capture data with onsite measurement tools. Trimble Connect for HoloLens is available now through the Microsoft Windows App Store. A free trial option is available enabling integration with HoloLens. Paid subscriptions support premium functionality allowing for precise on-site alignment and collaboration. Trimble’s Hard Hat Solution for Microsoft HoloLens extends the benefits of HoloLens mixed reality into areas where increased safety requirements are mandated, such as construction sites, offshore facilities, and mining projects. The solution, which is ANSI-approved, integrates the HoloLens holographic computer with an industry-standard hard hat. Trimble’s Hard Hat Solution for HoloLens is expected to be available in the first quarter of 2018. To learn more, visit


From DSC:
Combining voice recognition / Natural Language Processing (NLP) with Mixed Reality should provide some excellent, powerful user experiences. Doing so could also provide some real-time understanding as well as highlight potential issues in current designs. It will be interesting to watch this space develop. If there were an issue, wouldn’t it be great to remotely ask someone to update the design and then see the updated design in real-time? (Or might there be a way to make edits via one’s voice and/or with gestures?)

I could see where these types of technologies could come in handy when designing / enhancing learning spaces.




Web-Powered Augmented Reality: a Hands-On Tutorial — from by Uri Shaked
A Guided Journey Into the Magical Worlds of ARCore, A-Frame, 3D Programming, and More!


There’s been a lot of cool stuff happening lately around Augmented Reality (AR), and since I love exploring and having fun with new technologies, I thought I would see what I could do with AR and the Web?—?and it turns out I was able to do quite a lot!

Most AR demos are with static objects, like showing how you can display a cool model on a table, but AR really begins to shine when you start adding in animations!

With animated AR, your models come to life, and you can then start telling a story with them.
 adds augmented reality art-viewing to its iOS app — from by Lucas Matney


If you’re in the market for some art in your house or apartment, will now let you use AR to put digital artwork up on your wall.

The company’s ArtView feature is one of the few augmented reality features that actually adds a lot to the app it’s put in. With the ARKit-enabled tech, the artwork is accurately sized so you can get a perfect idea of how your next purchase could fit on your wall. The feature can be used for the two million pieces of art on the site and can be customized with different framing types.





Experience on Demand is a must-read VR book — from by Ian Hamilton


Bailenson’s newest book, Experience on Demand, builds on that earlier work while focusing more clearly — even bluntly — on what we do and don’t know about how VR affects humans.

“The best way to use it responsibly is to be educated about what it is capable of, and to know how to use it — as a developer or a user — responsibly,” Bailenson wrote in the book.

Among the questions raised:

  • “How educationally effective are field trips in VR? What are the design principles that should guide these types of experiences?”
  • How many individuals are not meeting their potential because they lack the access to good instruction and learning tools?”
  • “When we consider that the subjects were made uncomfortable by the idea of administering fake electric shocks, what can we expect people will feel when they are engaging all sorts of fantasy violence and mayhem in virtual reality?”
  • “What is the effect of replacing social contact with virtual social contact over long periods of time?”
  • “How do we walk the line and leverage what is amazing about VR, without falling prey to the bad parts?”





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© 2017 | Daniel Christian