This week, we’ve got flexible PCBs available to order, a mega-sized Echo Dot speaker shaped like an Echo Dot to give your Echo massive sound, researchers revealed a way to turn 2D images into 3D augmented ones, and one developer used Roomba maps to generate maps for the classic shooter Doom!

Flexible PCBs, a MegaDot speaker for your Echo Dot and a way to turn 2D images into 3D

Flexible PCBs, a MegaDot speaker for your Echo Dot and a way to turn 2D images into 3D

Nominate your emerging tech inspirations of 2018!

Happy New Year everyone! Dev Diner has a yearly tradition where we ask for nominations for those in emerging tech who’ve inspired you in the year gone by. Help give a bit of recognition to those who really deserve it for their efforts in 2018. We like to highlight those in the industry based on the community’s nominations, rather than any judgement calls of our own. Show your appreciation by heading here and nominating a person or two!


Virtual Reality

Why Oculus Go was our VR/AR innovation of the year 2018

Wareable have crowned Oculus Go as their VR/AR innovation for 2018 — beating Magic Leap. This article talks about why.

Steam’s best VR-only experiences of 2018

Valve has released a list of the 100 top selling VR games on Steam of the past year and… a lot of them are on special right now.

The Verge 2018 tech report card: AR and VR

The Verge’s Adi Robertson gives VR/AR a grade of C for this year.

VR & AR 2018: a year in review

“If 2016 was the birth of modern VR/AR technology, than 2018 was its elementary school graduation. While this past year may have seemed like a quiet one when compared to the more exciting releases featured in 2017 and 2016, these past 12 months have been crucial in the development of the immersive entertainment sector”.

7 ways to avoid VR motion sickness

These seven tactics can help consumers of VR avoid getting motion sick while using VR.

VR experience lets you step inside a dead star

A VR simulation of the youngest known supernova remnant in the Milky Way Galaxy, referred to as Cassiopeia A.

Something for the weekend: PlayStation VR January savings

PlayStation Store’s sale is on until 10th January, so if you’re looking to do some PSVR over the break and want new stuff…

VAR Live launches largest VR theme park in Malaysia

The 14-room facility features vibrating floors, haptic peripherals, and artificial wind!

Verizon uses VR to prepare employees for hostage & robbery situations

A very good use of VR actually which could save lives and help employees be more prepared.

Therapists using VR to treat mental health issues

“There are over 300 peer-reviewed studies that show VR is an effective tool for treating mental health disorders such as anxiety, depression, trauma, and addiction.”

China shows its masterplan to lead virtual reality in 2025

The Chinese government wants to lead the VR world by 2025.

Virtual reality may encourage empathic behavior

A VR experience called “Becoming Homeless” is helping expand research on how VR affects empathy.


Augmented Reality

Market Reality: Magic Leap dominated investment & innovation in 2018, while New York Times maintains its AR media lead

Next Reality has a look at what the industry has accomplished from a business perspective.

The 10 biggest AR investments of 2018

Next Reality also look at the biggest AR investments from the year.

University of Washington researchers demo ability to generate 3D augmented reality content from 2D images

This technique is worth checking out — generating a 3D augmented reality model from a 2D image! Here’s a YouTube video showing it in action.

HoloLens’ missing stock fuels HoloLens 2 speculation

“It increasingly seems like 2019 could be the year that HoloLens 2 is revealed”!

Meta’s optical expert delivers AR reality check via TED talk, & takes a few veiled swipes at Magic Leap

“Dr. Barmak Heshmat, delivered an 11-minute presentation designed to offer some clarity regarding the present and future of AR, from his perspective”.



Campaign for better sleep: Fitbit’s sleep metrics explained

Fitbit and Wareable have teamed up to explain sleep metrics that their devices track — sleep metrics are one of the main reasons I got my Fitbit!

Louis Vuitton’s Tambour smartwatch is receiving a major chip upgrade

Louis Vuitton’s luxurious LV Tambour Horizon Smartwatch is adding Qualcomm’s new wearables chipset and getting a battery boost.

How to text on a Fitbit Versa

It also works for the Fitbit Ionic as they run the same operating system.

New from OSH Park, flexible PCBs!

“Costing $15 per square inch, which includes three copies of your board, the flexible PCB is about three times as expensive as traditional FR4 boards.”


Artificial Intelligence, Autonomous Vehicles and Robotics

This clever AI hid data from its creators to cheat at its appointed task

The machine learning process worked out how to subtly encode the features of one image into the noise patterns of the other to get solid results.

Echo Dot failing to drop the bass? Build your own gigantic replacement!

Hackster featured this amazing tutorial from JoeGadget on building a” MegaDot” that is eight times the size of an Echo Dot!

This AI teaches robots how to walk

“Researchers at Google Brain and the University of California, Berkeley have developed an AI system that taught a quadrupedal robot how to walk from scratch”.

Researchers claim AI system can distinguish between dyslexic and skilled readers

Researchers claim to have developed an AI system that can identify people with dyslexia using EEGs.

2018 is the year AI got its eyes

Engadget had a look at 2018 for artificial intelligence.

A look back at some of AI’s biggest video game wins in 2018

VentureBeat has a look back at some of AI’s biggest wins in games like DOTA 2, Montezuma’s Revenge and StarCraft II.

The year in robots, from Boston Dynamics to (RIP) Baxter

Wired had a look back on the biggest moments in robotics in 2018.

Amazon says Alexa voice shopping tripled during 2018 holiday season

“Amazon shipped more than one billion products for free via Prime”.

This Roomba can turn cleaning maps into Doom levels

Doomba uses Roomba 980 robot vacuums to create different levels of Doom. Just amazing.


Internet of Things and Makers

Alexa crapped out on Christmas

Alexa servers in Europe didn’t work so well when too many people signed up at once on Christmas…

Phony Alexa ‘setup’ app is topping Apple’s app store charts

Keep an eye out (especially for people who aren’t as tech savvy) as there’s a fake “Setup for Alexa” app on the app store.

Vacuum Tube Lamp – Sound Reactive

Here’s a guide on how to make a lamp out of vacuum tubes, transistors and LEDs.


Events and Conference Discount Codes!

JOLT Roadshows (early 2019)

At JOLT Roadshows, inspirational speakers from the world’s leading enterprises will share how they have embraced AI to improve revenue, customer retention, and experience! They’re at six locations throughout early 2019 in both USA and Canada. Click the link for info — it’s free!


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