This week, co-founder & Oculus Rift creator, Palmer Luckey, left Oculus and Facebook! I’m still surprised at the news days later… Meanwhile, Samsung has new Gear VR, Gear 360 and smart home hub tech on the way and Volkswagen revealed an “autonomous pod” concept!

Gear VR controllers, fancy autonomous pods, Palmer Luckey and a Gear 360 camera!

Gear VR controllers, fancy autonomous pods, Palmer Luckey has left Oculus and a Gear 360 camera!

AI With The Best

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Virtual Reality

Oculus co-founder and Rift creator Palmer Luckey left departs Facebook

Absolutely huge news… not even sure what to say here!

Oculus revamps Home on Gear VR with 3x faster load times, 2x resolution, Explore tab and web browser

Oculus Home for Gear VR has had a big update that increased its resolution considerably… using only software — a new Oculus runtime system. Full tech details from John Carmack here in a Facebook post.

What is Reality?

A transcript of Tony Parisi’s SVVR keynote asking some great questions like:

“What will happen when we can use VR and haptics to deliver messages straight to the hypothalamus — even implanting memories?”

HTC releases full body tracking code for use with Vive and trackers

So much potential around these Vive trackers, this is the latest and it’s great!

Samsung unveils VR motion controller and new Gear 360 camera

Samsung has new AR features in the S8, a new handheld Gear VR controller and a new Gear 360 camera on the way.

Facebook opens 360 live streaming video to all

Might come in handy to use with that new Samsung Gear 360 camera!

Toward user interface and experience guidelines for virtual, augmented and mixed realities

An incredibly in-depth look at designing interactions for VR/AR!

Triangular Pixels launched a Patreon to support game jams and Tracker VR

The team behind the pet tracker VR creation mentioned in past newsletters have launched a Patreon to support their various efforts!


Augmented and Mixed Reality

Pixie Technology uses fobs and augmented reality to locate your lost wallet

A neat solution for finding your wallet that goes beyond typical coordinates!

Windows 10 is getting mixed reality support next month

Devs can start making content for the Acer Windows Mixed Reality Development Edition headsets with this OS.

Discussions with Apple regarding license agreement

Apple is moving to make their own GPUs in just over a year and their current supplier isn’t happy.

Google-backed startup Magic Leap may release $1,000 ‘light-field’ smart glasses this year

Looks still like total rumour but… you never know. According to this report, it will “be tethered to a small pack that provides battery and processing power, to put in a pocket or attach to a belt”.

How HoloGrid: Monster Battle became an (augmented) reality

A look at the creation of an AR game with creatures made by the designer and animator of the original HoloChess scene from Star Wars!

Video projector creates augmented reality with no bulky headset

We’ve seen some patents from companies looking at this approach before. It’s yet another example of the many forms available for AR.



Android Wear 2.0 is hitting more watches today

Earlier this week, Android Wear 2.0 had a bug that delayed its release, there has since been a bugfix and it is being pushed out to more watches.

The Fitbit Alta HR band is the least dorky fitness band you can buy

Their app, the quality of stats and suggestions, along with new heart-rate tracking, make it a viable option according to David Pogue.

Replacement buttons for Pebble Watch

Need to 3D print replacement Pebble Watch buttons? This might help!

Blackberry could be gearing up to launch its own wearables

They’re still kicking on and might be expanding their tech reach!

Touched by time – Cyborgism

“Tempo is a wearable device that feeds time data to my skin through vibration patterns.” A very cool thesis project.


Artificial Intelligence, Autonomous Vehicles and Robotics

GE’s new “Brilliant Learning” program will train workers for jobs of the future

This is the sort of thing I really think we need a lot more of! Go GE!

A.I. versus M.D.

Great piece by the New Yorker on using machine learning in diagnosis. This part especially fascinated me:

“they found that if they began with a neural network that had already been trained to recognize some unrelated feature (dogs versus cats, say) it learned faster and better”.

The sharks of AI will attack expensive and scarce workers faster than they eat drivers

An interesting look at how AI is expanding into more professions.

How Ford has slammed the door on Silicon Valley’s autonomous vehicles drive

They want the subscription revenue from apps and online services.

Volkswagen debuts Sedric Concept, the first of the autonomous pods

A look at what Volkswagen sees as the future of autonomous vehicles.

Siri, I was abused, what do I do?

These sorts of issues are incredibly important to get right on conversational platforms and it looks like Siri isn’t doing too well just yet.

Google’s leading futurist predicts the Singularity’s arrival within 12 years

Well, that’s a lot sooner than I’d expected.


Internet of Things

Samsung squeezed a smart home hub into a Wi-Fi router

It also supports mesh networking which is super neat. CNET has details too.

Siri and Alexa are fighting to be your hotel butler

Marriott hotels are looking into Siri and Alexa for smart hotel rooms.

The smartphone is eventually going to die, and then things are going to get really crazy

A nice look at where our devices are headed. (Thanks to Antony for this one!)

The Matrix Voice is an Alexa for your Raspberry Pi

An open-source voice recognition platform with an 8 microphone array.

Build your own Sidekick-inspired mobile Raspberry Pi computer

A Pi computer that’s a bit like the old Sidekick phones.

Vento on

A solar powered Wi-Fi development board based on STM32 and ESP32.

Putting the Pi Compute 3 module to work

A technical review of the Pi Compute 3 module for those considering it.

How do I fix the Onion Omega2 when seeing “Index of /console/”?

If, like me, you eagerly purchased an Onion Omega2, this tip might come in handy after a factory reset some day soon.


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