This week, Leap Motion released their latest Orion SDK with a cat-themed demo, we had a sneak peek at a VR-based Rube Goldberg machine creator, we’ve got robot traffic cones, a bunch more info on the Magic Leap AR headset and more.

Leap Motion's "Cat Explorer", making a Rube Goldberg Machine in VR and robot traffic cones

Leap Motion’s “Cat Explorer”, making a Rube Goldberg Machine in VR and robot traffic cones

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Virtual Reality

Mario Kart in a real vehicle with VR!

Asier Arranz, a creative developer, put together this really smart prototype with the Mirage Solo VR headset.

Introducing the latest generation of Orion tracking

Leap Motion had a major release of their Orion VR tracking software, now available for public beta on Windows. It has better finger dexterity and fidelity, significantly smoother hand and finger tracking, and more! They’ve also provided some new demos, including “Cat Explorer”.

Istaging’s VR maker app is now Google Street View ready

Users can now publish 360-degree content to Google Maps Street View directly within the Istaging’s VR Maker app.

The Elder Scrolls: Blades coming to mobile and high-end VR

Bethesda is going to make their next game cross-platform — hoping to have smartphone users and VR users being able to play together.

Adding mixed reality capture support to Unreal Games

Unreal Engine now has some exciting mixed reality capture support!

Sony announces Tetris Effect for the PSVR

It’s an interesting concept to bring to VR… for those who want to be totally immersed in their Tetris game.

Build your own useless Rube Goldberg machine in VR

This is just fantastic! I’ve gotta try this at some point.

Oculus launches virtual reality tour of Anne Frank’s house

Oculus Studios is launching a VR tour of the Anne Frank House, the home in Amsterdam where the famous author hid from the Nazi’s during World War II.


Augmented Reality

Project North Star is now open source

Leap Motion have their own AR headset design that is open source — you could make your very own today if you’re handy with hardware and tracking down parts!

At last: Magic Leap reveals its revolutionary techno-goggles – but wait, there’s a catch

They live-streamed a preview of Magic Leap’s headset on Twitch, but were very limited in what they were willing to actually show… which made the chat rather angry! Yet Wearable think they’ve been doing a great job and that it’s an example of community management 101.

What we just learned about the Magic Leap One’s hardware

Here’s CNET’s summary of the livestream.

Magic Leap Livestream 02 gives up some clues

Here’s Karl Guttag’s more technical, indepth look at the Magic Leap livestream as he tries to work out as much from the stream as possible.

Dreamworld’s 2.5k Dreamglass is the most affordable AR headset yet

Only US$399 at early bird discount (then up to $619 — so get in fast!).

Adobe introduces AR authoring tool

Project Aero is a multi-platform AR authoring tool whose content can be published on the web or on VR and mobile devices.

Snapchat launches new AR lens with audio

Snapchat has added audio reactivity to their latest AR lens!

Announcing Lightform Creator: epic visuals powered by computer vision

Keen to get into projection-style AR instead? Check out Lightform.



How Fitbit is trying to transform healthcare, and itself

Fitness trackers are looking for ways to keep growing and expanding, so entering into more physical and mental healthcare areas is key.

Leaf Wearables’ personal safety button takes home women’s safety xprize

Huge congrats to this team — they’ve got themselves a $1 million prize!

That Samsung Wear OS smartwatch? it might not happen after all

The spotted watches were apparently one offs for employees, but it might still be a thing.

Apple Watch owners can now say bye bye Siri and hello to Alexa

“Voice in a Can” is an app that lets you talk to Alexa by tapping into their app.

Fitbit’s kid-friendly Ace tracker is now available to purchase worldwide

“Ace is aimed at getting kids off the couch and doing activities, tracking fitness and sleep activity and deploying move reminders every so often”.


Artificial Intelligence, Autonomous Vehicles and Robotics

5 ways to teach yourself robotics

Not sure where to start amongst it all but want to learn on your own? Meri Amber, a budding roboticist in the making, recommends five ways that you can teach yourself robotics!

GDPR panic may spur data and AI innovation

TechCrunch looks at how AI and data innovation counterintuitively also stand to benefit from GDPR, while simultaneously being potentially harmed from it.

Tesla’s Autopilot will get “full self-driving features” in August

Elon Musk tweeted this announcement and while it’s not entirely clear what it means yet, it could be a pretty big step for Tesla.

Modular robotics made easier with ROS

ROS is a framework with libraries and tools for developing robots.

Robot traffic cones are here to save human lives

I don’t know why but this idea seems like an ingenius one to me! They go about 4mph (about 6.5kph).

By automating code compliance, upcodes AI is “the spellcheck for buildings”

“For many architects, the hardest part of their job starts after they finish designing a building, when the onerous process of code compliance begins” — AI might be able to help!

Google sets out its ethics on AI collaboration, then riddles it with caveats

The Inquirer isn’t too full of praise for Google’s ethics on AI collaboration.

Bad things happen when you train AI using “the darkest corners of Reddit”

The “world’s first psychopath AI” is what happens.

Apple introduces the AI phone

iOS 12 has a whole bunch of Siri-based, AI enhancements.

New tools are making artificial intelligence more fair

“A growing field has emerged to help ensure the computer algorithms are fair and free of bias.”

Surprise: soulless sex robots offer no human health benefits

It turns out there’s no evidence (yet) that robots filling in for humans in this regard offers any health benefits, despite a growing industry for it.

Uber might be working on AI tech that knows when you’re drunk

Drivers could refuse to pick up people who are a tad too intoxicated.


Internet of Things and Makers

Skyrim: Very Special Edition joke shows that an Alexa-based RPG might work

Alexa and the IoT get a mention in this joke video from the Bethesda team.

S.C. mom says baby monitor was hacked; experts say many devices are vulnerable

This was a super creepy story… their baby monitor was watching them, “it was pointing to the spot where she breastfed her son, Noah, several times a day”.

Security concerns prompt retailers to pull CloudPets toys

“It’s been more than a year since researchers discovered security problems in CloudPets’ internet-connected toys. Mozilla and Cure53 recently found that none of those issues have been fixed.” — Yikes.

Amazon Echo factory workers were being paid “less than half” living wage

This is incredibly sad news to hear.

UK homes vulnerable to “staggering” level of corporate surveillance

“One Samsung smart TV connected to more than 700 distinct internet addresses in 15 minutes.”

Ericsson doubles its 2023 forecast for IoT connections

“Ericsson has almost doubled its forecast for connected cellular Internet of Things (IoT) in 2023 to 3.5 billion”.


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