Learn from experts breaking ground on the frontier of VR and AR development in the Innovation Track. Hear in-depth lectures and panels illustrating how virtual and augmented reality has the power to influence nearly all aspects of life as we know it.

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WebVR: Building for the Immersive Web
Tony Parisi (Unity)

The web can bring significant benefits to virtual reality, including the ability for consumers to experience VR without downloading and installing apps, and seamless transitions from one experience to another via hyperlinks. VR developers also benefit, with the ability to deploy using open tools and existing cloud infrastructure. Join VR pioneer and author Tony Parisi in an exploration of the immersive web and its underlying foundation, WebVR. WebVR comes online in late 2016, powered by a new generation of browsers including desktop Chrome and Firefox, and mobile browsers for Samsung Gear VR and Google Daydream.

Thinking with Your Body: Fast Iteration for Mixed Reality Design
Omer Shapira (NVIDIA)

Let's face it, tools for VR are still evolving. A lot of hours are wasted to get a demo running before the UX questions surface. This talk shows the benefits of designing around the human body instead of the game engine camera. This talk will discuss proprioception, human motion planning, LOD in UX design, cues for spatial reckoning, measuring tool effectiveness, and personal space. Omer will take key practical learnings from NVIDIA, Fake Love, Framestore and other experience studios to examine ways of tending to the granularity of our bodies, exploiting our perceptual blindspots, and describe ways of implementing those into the experience.

Prototypes and Tears: Surviving the Early Days of VR
Joe Radak (Eerie Bear Games, LLC)
Nathan Rowe (SculptrVR, Inc.)
Julie Heyde (VRUnicorns)
Theresa Duringer (Temple Gates Games)
Sara Lisa Vogl (VR Nerds)

The virtual reality landscape is scary. There is something new discovered every day in VR; new techniques, theories and experiences are changing daily. This is daunting for new and seasoned game developers alike. Where do you start? What should you make? What do you share? Join five VR game developers as they answer these questions and walk through the challenges they had starting up in VR, overcoming its challenges and how they got to where they are now, and how you can do the same.

For Every Gamer: Making VR and AR Truly Accessible
Tracey John (Independent)
Andy Moore (Radial Games)
Brian Van Buren (Tomorrow Today Labs)
Kayla Kinnunen (Independent)

As VR and AR emerge as a new medium for storytelling, gaming, and other applications, it's important to think about how to create experiences that can be inclusive to all types of gamers, especially since 20 percent of gamers have some form of disability. Ultimately, if developers want to be inclusive and/or make profit, disabled gamers are an increasingly important segment of users that can no longer be ignored.

Applications of Eye Tracking in Virtual Reality
Tom Sengelaub (SMI)

Eye Tracking is a hot topic in VR. But what is all the fuzz about? SMI will present how eye tracking can be used to personalize the 3D experience and how the point of gaze revolutionizes interaction with a virtual world. The power of eye tracking is not limited to interaction alone. In the long run, eye tracking can make logins obsolete, and using foveated rendering, make high resolution displays possible in HMDs. SMI will outline how this can be done and present both the state-of-the-art and a leap into the future of eye tracking in VR.

Exploring & Remembering the Chernobyl Disaster using VR - Chernobyl VR Project
Wojciech Pazdur (The Farm 51)

Chernobyl VR Project is an interactive virtual tour showing aftermath of the biggest environmental disaster caused by human. With help of photogrammetry, laser scanners, drones, 360 spherical movies and photos, The Farm 51's crew recreated parts of radiated Exclusion Zone into a real-time application made on Unreal Engine 4. We had to overcome a big number of technical, logistic and design challenges, but there’s still more to be done because project's expansion assumes making a visualisation of the future of this area as well as it's look from the past, before the catastrophe. Lecture will focus on atypical issues encountered during the development and ideas how to resolve remaining problems of creating a huge, interactive VR documentary.

Hand Tracked Controls: Design and Implementation for Serious VR
Matt Newport (Osso VR)

This session explains the tremendous value of hand tracked controls in VR for training applications and discusses the key design decisions developers face implementing hand tracked controls and hand/object interaction in VR. It covers some implementation issues for hand tracked controls such as: grabbing, dropping and throwing objects; user friendly hand interaction and effective instructional UI with examples in Unity. While focused on training applications of VR much of the material is relevant to games and other applications and to engines other than Unity.

VR Ethics: How to Not Join the League of Evil
Suzanne Leibrick (ARVR Academy)
Erin Pangilinan (Harp)
Benun Idris (Independent Developer)
Jedrzej Jonasz (Mythical City Games)
Sky Nite (UploadVR)

Panelists discuss the potential future ramifications of VR: how to avoid unethical behavior, what unethical VR creation looks like, and how to use your developer superpowers only for good.

Immersive Data Visualization: AR in the Workplace
Rosstin Murphy (IBM)

Rosstin Murphy of IBM presents his research on using AR to visualize, analyze, and manipulate big data in the workplace. His goal is to use AR to augment the data scientist's toolbox and improve the speed and depth of their analyses. Exploring VR interaction in a business context showed promise, but revealed objective challenges to VR in a work environment. These challenges include the time cost of switching between VR gear and mouse + keyboard, juggling a 3D virtual environment alongside conventional 2D desktop interfaces, and choosing the right hardware controller model and 3D interaction algorithms. AR technology, though still in its infancy, elegantly solves many problems.

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