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The U Of OIT Has A Lot Of Cool Immersive Technology Resources

3D, Virtual Reality, And Immersive Technology At The U Of OIT
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We had a great time checking out the facilities, playing with the hardware, and meeting some of the students and staff at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology. It was a pleasure to experience the innovative ideas created by young minds at the school.

Faculty and students in the demo roomFaculty and students in the demo room

We'd like to thank Neil Schneider for inviting us to visit the university, and Dr. Andrew Hogue for donating his time and making some of his students available to show us the fantastic projects they're working on. Thanks also to those students in the lab for sharing their work with us.

One lesson to be learned here is that big ambition and progressive learning aren't exclusive to larger, more established institutions. The U of OIT is a relatively new, small university, yet I think it has a lot of potential for the right student. As immersive technology progresses into the mainstream, it's comforting to know that some educators take change seriously and strive to deliver a meaningful dose of forward-looking hardware and software experience to their pupils.

I know I'm looking forward to what the next generation of software and hardware developers will deliver when products like the Oculus Rift are more mature and in the hands of gamers everywhere. The best news of all is that the wait probably won't be very long. And that's a more optimistic outlook than we had only two years ago.

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  • 1 Hide
    xkm1948 , November 5, 2013 9:21 PM
    Hopefully the development of neuroscience will help sending signals directly to one's cortex without being processed by vision system. It is already doable in auditory system, although it is still indirectly stimulus of cortex. With a better understanding of cortex mapping, we may finally be able to get signals directly into brain without all the sensory organs!
  • 0 Hide
    clonazepam , November 5, 2013 9:53 PM
    baby steps... baby steps. I dont see how that's possible without destroying healthy brain tissue during the learning process, so it'll never happen. Maybe some lab rats might get to enjoy some corridor run-throughs from the latest ID software, Quake 37 or something, but that's about it.

    I like the idea of several companies coming together to build a market to share with each other. That'd be nice. I've got a 3D Vision ready monitor and glasses. I messed around with it some when I first got it, but the quality of the experience from one game to the next was anything but consistent. Longer play sessions were interrupted by having to recharge the glasses too.

    I'm still hopeful that we get there someday. It's nice to know there's a group of people out there to decide where "there" is, and help define it as we move toward it.
  • 0 Hide
    etaxdoa , November 6, 2013 3:37 AM
    what do I do with my vuzix 1200 wrap once Rift hits retail?
  • 0 Hide
    piklar , November 6, 2013 1:27 PM
    Bunch o Chickmagnets.... things will get interesting when Occy R goes retail , cant help but think they will be hard pressed to keep up with demand "how could you NOT want one?" exciting times ahead..
  • 0 Hide
    bystander , November 6, 2013 4:22 PM
    Quote:
    Hopefully the development of neuroscience will help sending signals directly to one's cortex without being processed by vision system. It is already doable in auditory system, although it is still indirectly stimulus of cortex. With a better understanding of cortex mapping, we may finally be able to get signals directly into brain without all the sensory organs!

    While that may be interesting, and very useful for the blind, part of the experience we have with 3D is processing it in the same manner we do in real life. Through our eyes.

    I am a big fan of 3D Vision myself. I really wish all the poor versions of 3D never existed, so people would stop calling it bad or a gimmick, because in the right games, it is truly awesome. 3D Vision has a great mod community that fixes a lot of games too, using the Helix mod, for those into 3D, it is a must to use their mods.
  • 0 Hide
    sebkow , November 6, 2013 4:28 PM
    we had a blast having you at our school
  • 0 Hide
    sebkow , November 6, 2013 4:30 PM
    Though it is UOIT and not U of OIT :) 
  • 1 Hide
    bnot , November 6, 2013 5:30 PM
    "Back in 2007, 3D was in the hands of hardcore fringe enthusiasts, and reliable information was very had to come by." ?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virtuality_(gaming)

    Virtuality is a line of virtual reality gaming machines produced by Virtuality Group, and found in video arcades in the early 1990s.[1] The machines deliver real time (less than 50ms lag) gaming via a stereoscopic visor, joysticks, and networked units for multi-player gaming.
    Initially introduced in 1991, the systems were developed for industry, where the first two networked systems were sold to British Telecom Research Laboratories to experiment with networked telepresence applications. Many other systems were sold to corporations including Ford, IBM, Mitsubishi and Olin. Professional virtual reality systems included the launch of the Ford Galaxy in virtual reality and a virtual trading floor for the London International Financial Futures and Options Exchange (LIFFE).[2] However, the users' thrill of talking and mutually interacting with each other as virtual characters refocused the company's direction.....


    http://www.cybermind.nl/Our%20Products/VR%20LBE%20Systems/visette_01.gif

  • 0 Hide
    Shankovich , November 6, 2013 6:19 PM
    Wat UOIT is doing this stuff? LOL wow I should go visit. When I was applying to university 4 years ago they were offering insane entering scholarships because they were so new, $8000 a year if you had an average above 90%. Glad to see they're doing so well!
  • 0 Hide
    Verrin , November 6, 2013 10:19 PM
    I went to UOIT for nuclear science. It's a neato school, the high costs of tuition is because you're renting a laptop with expensive software suites on it (cost is more for the software than the hardware). I sort of cringed everytime the author said "U of OIT". No one calls it thaaaaaat. It's UOIT.
  • 0 Hide
    cleeve , November 7, 2013 10:37 AM
    I know it's UOIT guys, but it's not exactly a common acronym like MIT.

    I added the flourish so that people would infer that it's a university, sorry if it stepped on some sensibilities, not my intention. :) 
  • 0 Hide
    TeraMedia , November 7, 2013 10:49 AM
    U of OIT helped clarify for me that it was a university, indeed.

    Cool stuff guys. This is the first time I've ever even contemplated going back to school for something.
  • 0 Hide
    cleeve , November 7, 2013 10:56 AM
    Quote:
    "Back in 2007, 3D was in the hands of hardcore fringe enthusiasts, and reliable information was very had to come by." ?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virtuality_(gaming)

    Virtuality is a line of virtual reality gaming machines produced by Virtuality Group, ...



    Your response has absolutely nothing to do with my statement. I never said virtual reality never existed before 2007, I said "3D was in the hands of hardcore fringe enthusiasts, and reliable information was very had to come by".

    It was.

  • 0 Hide
    wip99gt , November 7, 2013 6:22 PM
    I've found Tridef and Vorpx to be much better drivers for the rift than Vireio. I do like that Vireio is free though and the first time I tried it with Dear Esther was my first holy s**t moment with the rift. Now I just need to wait for an omni.
  • 0 Hide
    Enterfrize , November 11, 2013 4:35 PM
    Just a heads-up that Vireio Perception 2.0 is out on November 28th, and it's eons apart from the first release. Also, when this article as published, MTBS has a MAJOR server crash. It's finally up again - sorry for the inconvenience.

    Regards,
    Neil
  • 0 Hide
    wip99gt , November 12, 2013 5:26 PM
    That's great. The more support for VR the better.
  • 0 Hide
    velocityg4 , November 19, 2013 9:15 AM
    I didn't see any 3D equipment in the article. Everything is 2D simulations of 3D that trick your eyes into seeing 3D. It's not true 3D where you can move around and look at something from any angle. That's what I am waiting for.

    Also all the 3D tech I have seen gets choppy and disorienting during any action fast action. I find that when I'm stuck watching something in 3D I just cover one eye to get rid of all the choppy screens and blurriness. Frankly with current tech I get a mild feeling of nausea and vertigo viewing 3D. I absolutely hate that to watch a movie on a large theater screen I'm stuck with 3D if I want 2D I have to view it on a small theater screen.

    Also the 3D never looks quite right. More like 2D objects placed at varying distances.
  • 0 Hide
    bystander , November 19, 2013 9:24 AM
    Quote:
    I didn't see any 3D equipment in the article. Everything is 2D simulations of 3D that trick your eyes into seeing 3D. It's not true 3D where you can move around and look at something from any angle. That's what I am waiting for.

    Also all the 3D tech I have seen gets choppy and disorienting during any action fast action. I find that when I'm stuck watching something in 3D I just cover one eye to get rid of all the choppy screens and blurriness. Frankly with current tech I get a mild feeling of nausea and vertigo viewing 3D. I absolutely hate that to watch a movie on a large theater screen I'm stuck with 3D if I want 2D I have to view it on a small theater screen.

    Also the 3D never looks quite right. More like 2D objects placed at varying distances.


    What you want is not practical. To have some form of holographic space you can move in and look at from all angles would take enormous amounts of space. You'd have to dedicate rooms to it.

    However, the Oculus Rift does come close, as it allows you to turn your head to change the view. You get depth from the stereoscopic 3D.

    The "3D" you consider acceptable is not practical due to space requirements.