The best thing I saw at IFA Berlin

IFA Berlin is one of the biggest consumer electronics exhibition in the world. I jumped on a train from Amsterdam and went there with the intention to visit everything related to VR. And there was a lot to see: HTC Vive, Sony Morpheus for developers and gamers, tons of Samsung Gear VR with various previews, Zeiss VR One for the high range VR glasses, lots of mid range VR glasses, Arte’s cross-platform for virtual reality, various Oculus demos and Roller Coasters… This was all interesting, but nothing that I didn’t already know about, until this:

Fraunhofer institute has developed an amazing software for 3D sound experience! It analyzes any type of audio input your video has and adapts it in 3D space. All you need is your smartphone with VR glasses, and any, yes any!!! type of headphones and you have 360° video and sound.

Why is this so great?

Because until recently, and I speak from personal experience, to make a 360° video and have corresponding 360° sound was a huge challenge. For me it was amazing to see such a good and well functioning solution. I honestly thought it’ll take much longer.

So, I tried it and it worked great! (not perfect yet, I noticed some slight mismatches between spacial movements and sounds but it was nothing compared to the overall effectiveness) Oh, and one more thing, you can use it to simulate 5.1 (or any other set like 4.0 and so on) only with the two speakers of your computer, phone or smartphone!

Another indispensable tool for immersive film is here, check it out:)

VR and Ethics

This is an article on The Ethics of Virtual Reality from 1992. It covers the main problematics of the concept in philosophy and ethics. It elaborates on the cultural and technical dimension of VR and introduces various points of view. A short quote:

“Virtual reality therefore has the effect of reality upon us, though we recognise that it is not properly real. VR is best described as a simulation, as opposed to a representation (Baudrillard, 1983). If I make a model of something, say a chair, then my model is a representation if I never lose my belief that it is the original chair that is the real object. On the other hand, if I make a model of something, say the surface of the moon, and in navigating the imaginary terrain I come to believe that the model is real, then I am in a simulation. The term “virtual reality” is a precise expression of this latter concept for we are, at the same time, admitting the fact that we have created a model (which is unreal) and admitting that we are treating it as reality.

The significant point about this definition is that VR is essentially subjective. VR is an experience and not a piece of technology. I can curl up with a good novel and claim to be in virtual reality, whilst I can don the most expensive headset and data glove yet remain perfectly aware of the fakeness of what I observe. This is important because it follows from this definition that many symbolic structures in society can be viewed as “virtual reality” (for example, cases where a computer model of an organisation does not reflect the underlying reality). We must therefore understand virtual reality as being the expression of a deep philosophical problem caused by our commitment to symbolic structures whose existence now obscures the reality of the underlying object.”


morning text 2

I was wondering

Dear Best Friend,

I was wondering. All night I was wondering. An idea was coming to my mind and than drifting. Than coming closer again and running back. I was trying to catch it but it would escape, only to tickle me again on the nose or the feet in just a few minutes. In the moment I would start flying away in the land of mindless rest and peaceful darkness it would come back and inspire me. I was waking up, wondering what it was and trying to remember. It was on the tip of my tongue but I couldn’t reach it. I tried to write it down, but without success. Than I would fall asleep and same will repeat again and again until the sun enters the kitchen window.
This has been happening for the last three nights now as the humid and warm air is conquering the valley. I am afraid my dear friend, I won’t be able to catch that idea, to overcome myself and reach for this brilliant beautiful thought…anyway.This morning I noticed I was all covered with mosquito bites.
I was than wondering…

Your Best Friend,