As five days in sunny San Francisco came to a close, it was clear that virtual reality was all the buzz throughout the duration of Game Developers Conference, especially with the first two days of the conference being completely dedicated to VR. VRDC brought VR tutorials, VR boot camps and industry relevant speakers into an immersive AR/VR experience at the Moscone Center. This was VRDC’s second year and featured two different tracks for attendees to participate in: VR and AR for game development and VR and AR for other forms of entertainment–from CG movies to filmed experiences and beyond. It’s clear that VRDC’s presence for the second year at arguably the largest gaming conference in the world, means that virtual, augmented and mixed reality is the future and the most important steps in developing games for users and progressing the industry forward. The following three days opened the exhibition floor to companies and organizations to display their relevance to the gaming industry and how their technologies and products can progress technological advances to the next level. Oculus brought a full array of systems and demos to GDC sending an army of employees donning distinctive indigo shirts to recruit attendees to use their system with Oculus Touch controllers. PlayStation and its deep lineup of games allowed GDC-goers to sample everything from Grand Turismo Sport in a sit-in pod with a PS4 Pro to bringing back the infamous Crash Bandicoot of the early PlayStation days, and showcasing its wide variety of PSVR games as well. However, while controllers in VR and gaming in general still play a prevalent part in those fields, hand tracking sparked the interest of industry professionals and the thousands at GDC. USENS INC was a trending topic of conversation over the three days on the exhibition floor of the South Hall at the Moscone Center. We demonstrated our hand tracking capabilities with demos to show to the attendees of GDC. With several FINGO demos set-up, thousands of people in attendance flocked to the uSens booth (which happened to be close to the primary restrooms of the hall for maximum foot traffic – very strategic 😉). Throughout GDC, USENS interacted in-person and over all social media channels with tech, AR/VR and gaming influencers, journalists and industry professionals — all raving about USENS and FINGO. Here are just a couple examples: @DennisScimeca: Seriously: If you’ve never tried hand tracking in VR and have time, stop by the @usensinc booth. Tech works exactly as advertised. #gdc17. @Alexis_Macklin: Enjoyed testing out @usensinc at #gdc17. From verified Twitter users who promoted uSens to their thousands of followers to the individuals on social media who post with just a passion about their interests, USENS and our FINGO were trending topics coming out of GDC. USENS INC was featured in an article by Gao Yun of CGTN featuring FINGO and our tracking capabilities: San Jose, California-based uSens – founded by two Chinese developers – created a technology that utilizes a camera to recognize all the individual bones inside the hand, and then relays that information to the application. “Right now, people cannot interact directly in VR, but holding a controller is unnatural,” said Fei Yue, co-founder and CTO of uSens, adding that they are now letting people do whatever they want to do in real world. As VR moves further into mainstream society, technologists agree that the experience needs to become more natural, and ironically, more like everything in the real world.
uSens, Inc., a pioneer in hand-and-head tracking technologies for Augmented and Virtual Reality, has appointed Dr. Eunseok Park to the new position of U.S. general manager. A collaborator on nearly 200 world patents, Dr. Park was most recently the U.S. regional director for Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology (SAIT), where he managed research and development in emerging technologies across all four U.S. sites. In his new role with uSens, Dr. Park will tap into the deep business relationships he has established with the world’s leading academic and corporate research entities. “We are so proud to have a leader with the pedigree of Eunseok Park join the uSens team,” said Anli He, CEO and co-founder of uSens. “He brings incomparable expertise in administration and management of engineering projects and in nurturing teams. uSens will benefit from his broad connections to attract the highest caliber of research and engineering talent and to build industry partnerships that will grow uSens’ footprint in the ARVR industry.” “I couldn’t be more excited at the opportunity to join uSens at this stage of the company’s growth. I look forward to experiencing the startup world from the inside and to apply my management and operational skills to take uSens to the next level of maturity,” said Dr. Park. “During my tenure with SAIT, I established deep relationships with the top research sites across the U.S. and Europe. I’m excited to mine those connections to bring more world-class research talent into uSens, and to help uSens in the commercialization of its AR and VR tracking solutions.” A Visionary Leader Dr. Eunseok Park has spent the last 11 years with the Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology (SAIT), the main research and development center for Samsung Electronics and other businesses within the Samsung Group. Beginning his career at SAIT as a senior researcher, Dr. Park eventually became regional director for Europe, where he identified and developed new areas of research in emerging technologies including mobile health. He also oversaw strategic IP for licensing or purchasing, and supported collaborations with leading European research institutes and business partners. As regional director for the U.S., Dr. Park managed R&D and operations across four sites and more than 100 employees, coordinated joint research projects with leading U.S. academic entities, and identified startups for angel and early-round investments. Dr. Park received his MS degree and PhD in electrical engineering from Syracuse University in New York, and an MBA from Sogang University in Seoul, South Korea. In addition to his extensive patent portfolio, Dr. Park is the author of many articles published for IEEE symposiums.
After CES Unveiled in Las Vegas on Tuesday night Janko Roettgers, senior Silicon Valley correspondent for Variety, featured uSens Inc. Roettgers tweeted out that: The Fingo VR hand tracking module is one of the cooler things I got to see at CES Unveiled. Check out the article and visit uSens Inc. at CES 2017 this week!
Facebook F8 is an annual conference keynote that took place on April 12 and 13 at Fort Mason in San Francisco, CA. The event was directed at developers and entrepreneurs who build products and services for the social network. During the conference, Zuckerberg mentioned that virtual reality could be the best form of social networking because of its strong communal immersion. He illustrated this idea by showing off the Toybox Demo for Oculus Touch. Facebook also presented an open source camera rig that they are calling the “Surround 360 Camera”. The camera, made with 17 combined cameras, will be able to shoot 3D-360 8K video at a smooth 60 frames per second. According to Chris Cox, Facebook’s vice president of product, the company plans to share the hardware design and stitching algorithm on Github this summer. The Oculus team also demoed their VR selfie stick that aims to make VR social. With the virtual stick, users will be able to take photos of their avatars in front of famous landmarks. Once the photo is taken, the user can share it with their Facebook friends’ virtual mailbox so they could post it on the site. After talking about VR, Zuckerberg, shifted the topic to augmented reality. Surprisingly, it was the first time that Zuckerberg revealed Facebook’s interest in AR. The Facebook CEO said that we could use AR apps to replace physical objects such as an AR TV set. Facebook also showed that they wanted to combine both AR and VR into their devices, which is also what we are working on here at uSens Inc. Near the end of the conference, Zuckerberg presented a photo of a pair of black glasses. These glasses were only a glimpse into the future of Facebook tech with Zuckerberg saying that VR/AR headsets will look like a regular pair of eyeglasses in 10 years. VR and AR were also featured at the end of Facebook’s 10-year road map, along with artificial intelligence and connectivity. Now that Facebook is officially on the AR train with Google and Microsoft, it should be interesting to see how this competition will help bring AR to new heights. -Amanze Ugoh
The most important form of visual art is eyeing it’s next major technological advancement. This advancement is incorporating Virtual Reality into major motion pictures. Disney recently invested $65 million into Jaunt, which is developing a cinematic VR headset for movies. While this company is not connected to us, we applaud them for looking into the next step of entertainment. Before we delve into virtual reality movies, we need to first acknowledge 3D movie formats. It is a bit easier to bash 3D I admit, but we cannot progress without mentioning the failed attempt of ‘enhancing’ the motion picture experience. We have all been to 3D movies. However, in a recent article from the New York Post, the author tells us why the 3D fad is dying. Most of us are not surprised that 3D films are dissipating again, because 3D formatting has had 3 major revivals (1950s, 1980s, & 2000s). It is approaching its 3rd major decline, and probably will not ever rebound again. Most major film critics despise the idea of 3D incorporated into movies. The movie industry is not just going to get an upgrade, but is going to face a cinematic revolution with VR. There have been smaller cinematic developments throughout the time movies have been around, but the technology releases steadily as it is made. Most of the cinematic developments that the consumer sees are to improve image, sound, and CGI quality. There are currently no major motion pictures that break the barriers of a static viewing screen. Cinematic VR will allow the movie viewing experience to be unique every time. Even viewing the same movie in a virtual space will render an infinite amount of new experiences for the viewer. Moviemakers can also incorporate ‘easter eggs’ or additional clues into the story that you can find yourself by swiveling your head. There are already videos on YouTube that you can watch that have VR capabilities. You can view these videos by utilizing your smart phone’s gyroscope to shift around your POV. You can also drag the specific video feed around with a mouse, if viewing on a computer. These VR videos usually come under the category of “360-degree videos.” They are pretty awesome, but they generally do not include narrative film. Most of the 360-degree videos come in a documentary format. The few 360-degree videos that actually have a narrative are very limited and not high quality. Once major motion pictures perfect VR/360-degree viewing capabilities, the experience will be absolutely stunning. Popularity with CGI Animations and motion capture films will skyrocket even further. Most popular animations are now created with CGI. With every new CGI animation, comes a 3-Dimensional world that is created. The artists behind these worlds will enjoy bringing their creations to you to view from every angle. VR in live-actions films will be harder to generate. Production companies would have to find out a way to edit out the production crew, lights, props, & everything else that goes on within inches of the camera’s specific FOV. However, Hollywood is no stranger to incredible cinematic innovations, and will figure it out as our capabilities expand. Movie VR technology is still being developed, but its capabilities are already being shown with documentary filmmaking and brief narratives. It has gained a secure footing and it will only be a matter of time before we see it evolve. For more about uSens, Inc. and Impression Pi, please visit our other social media sites: Twitter: @usensinc Facebook: uSens, Inc. – Impression Pi Google+: uSens, Inc. – Impression Pi LinkedIn: uSens, Inc. Company Profile
We just beefed up our Business and Marketing talent with the addition of Mark Tascher Morrison. Mark has over 27 years of experience in the media, entertainment & technology industries. Mark was born in the Northwest and grew up in Salt Lake City and Seattle. As a baby, Mark lived in Hong Kong and Taiwan, much to the excitement of our team. In 1989, Mark graduated from Pitzer College in Claremont California with a degree in Fine Arts. While at Pitzer, Mark’s creative growth in college inspired him to go into the music business in Los Angeles and Jamaica. From the music industry, he transferred his skills to TV, film, and video games. Mark’s background includes production, marketing, and business development, which run alongside his massive interest as a digital pop culture consumer. Mark’s most recent business accomplishments have been with Unity Technologies and Daqri. While at Unity, Mark was the Director of Business Development and Sales for 3 years; managing all of the enterprise level platform customers, publishers, and game developers. He was a key player in building and growing what is now one of the biggest game engine businesses in the world. Mark has spent the last two years focusing on Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) technology with Daqri, starting in 2014. His mission was growing their AR enterprise business products and services. “AR&VR mediums will drive our daily activities in the future,” Mark states simply. He adds, “The opportunities are wide open for developers and consumers to transform their physical environments into more meaningful experiences. Once AR&VR technology reaches critical mass, we’ll be able to interact with content that we’ve only been able to imagine in the past. This imagination will soon become transformed into physical and emotional experiences in our digital world.” Mark’s professional passion shifted when the technology industry moved from the static limitations of computers to the contemporary mobile platforms we now operate in. Mark elaborates, “We went from a linear media industry to something dynamic and interactive with the introduction of incredible mobile technology.” He stays ahead of consumer trends by focusing on his personal technology use with influences from his family. This has helped grow his current zeal for AR&VR. The world is Mark’s oyster, and now he is applying his advanced understanding of business development, sales, and marketing to our company. Mark’s long-term goal is to support our team’s vision to expand our road map into successful productization. He is excited about working with the rock star minds that will bring our innovative technologies to the market. Mark is going to evolve with our talents into something huge. Thanks Mark, we are as psyched as you. For more about uSens, Inc. and Impression Pi, check out our social media sites: On Twitter: @usensinc On Facebook: uSens, Inc. – Impression Pi On Google+: uSens, Inc. – Impression Pi On LinkedIn: uSens, Inc. Company Profile