After the success of Pokémon Go!, what is the future for augmented reality?

 

In Baum’s The Master Key, which was subtitled with a phrase that offers a rather delicious description of Silicon Valley – An Electrical Fairy Tale, Founded Upon the Mysteries of Electricity and the Optimism of Its Devotees – the protagonist is given the magical spectacles by a demon. After a fortnight’s adventuring, he concludes that neither he nor the world is ready for the specs. On the third week, he returns the invention until, he says, that time when humankind knows how to use them. “There are competing notions of what AR is going to be,” says Fleetwood. “There are the people who think we’re going to be living in some mass consensual Neal Stephenson novel. I’m very against that. I hope we’ll see those companies that put design and empathy at the heart of what they do with AR winning out.”

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Virtual reality for the masses is here. But do the masses want VR?

 

Both the PSVR and the new lower-minimum Oculus do offer that magic – the moment when the view on-screen and your actions in the real world merge so perfectly that you feel transported into the virtual reality presented to you. That said, they still have their flaws. The dreaded VR nausea is there too often, for too many people, and there’s still somewhat of a content drought, reflecting the chicken-and-egg situation the technology faces. These will be improved in time, but it’s time the platform doesn’t have, lest it be relegated to the same “yesterday’s tomorrow” position of similar techs like 3D TVs and motion-controlled video games. The line between short-lived novelty and transformational new technology is thinner than many give it credit, and VR needs to leap over it soon.

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Star Wars Battlefront and the art of retro sound design

Star_Wars_Battlefront_and_the_art_of_retro_sound_design___The_Verge

Interesting article on the sound design of the Star Wars movies and the recent Star Wars Battlefront game. Did you know, for example that:

The screech of the original TIE Fighter, for example, was the sound of an elephant, slowed down, and mixed with the sound of car rolling on wet pavement as recorded through a long tube.

There’s a scream that is featured in all the Star Wars films (so far as I know) and crops up as a bit of an in-joke in movies and cartoons everywhere. It’s called the Wilhelm Scream and there’s a compilation here.

Yes – it even shows up in Battlefront…