ISPR Presence News

Monthly Archives: April 2016

Call: Future Technologies Conference 2016

Future Technologies Conference 2016 – FTC 2016
6-7 December 2016
San Francisco, United States
Sponsored by HPCC Systems

Conference Website: www.SAIConference.com/FTC2016

FTC attracts researchers, scientists and technologists from some of the top companies, universities, research firms and government agencies from around the world.

Join us for FTC 2016, the world’s pre-eminent forum for reporting technological breakthroughs in the areas of Computing, Artificial Intelligence, Security, Robotics, Electronics and Communications. Click here for conference topics.

The conference is predicated on the successful conferences by The Science and Information (SAI) Organization that have been held in the UK since 2013. FTC 2016 combines a stimulating technical program with an exciting new venue, San Francisco, a city renowned for its steep rolling hills, eclectic mix of architecture, and landmarks including the Golden Gate Bridge and cable cars.

The conference programme will include paper presentations, poster sessions and project demonstrations, along with prominent keynote speakers and industrial workshops.… read more. “Call: Future Technologies Conference 2016”

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Excedrin ‘Migraine Experience’ lets non-sufferers ‘see’ what debilitating headaches feel like

[Most presence experiences are meant to be positive, or at least neutral; this one is purposely unpleasant. Unfortunately I know well that not replicating the pain of a migraine means the presence experience is a limited replication, but it can still be quite useful. Both stories below are from the New York Daily News; the first one features Excedrin’s 2:07 minute video and additional pictures. Excedrin’s press release is available via PR Newswire. And coverage by Chip Chick provides this detail: “Excedrin had a custom rig drawn up that combines augmented reality and virtual reality to get people to see what their lives would be like if they were suddenly hit with a migraine. When strapped into VR, users will still be able to see the real world around them, but with migraine goggles on. Usually with augmented reality, the augmented field of vision is narrow — this rig uses VR head tracking to turn augmented reality into a full, 360-degree experience.” –Matthew]

Excedrin migraine simulator (first-person view from video)

Excedrin ‘Migraine Experience’ lets non-sufferers ‘see’ what debilitating headaches feel like

BY Nicole Lyn Pesce
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Thursday, April 7, 2016

Seeing is believing.… read more. “Excedrin ‘Migraine Experience’ lets non-sufferers ‘see’ what debilitating headaches feel like”

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Planned Parenthood’s new VR experience simulates clinic harassment

[Reading an analysis of an issue or description of an experience is fundamentally different than the VR-evoked sense of having the experience. This first-person report of a VR simulation of harassment at a Planned Parenthood clinic is from Broadly; a link to a 7:12 minute navigable video version is provided at the end below. For an interview with Dawn Laguens, executive producer of Across the Line and executive vice president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, and Nonny de la Peña, co-creator of Across the Line, see coverage from Democracy Now. –Matthew]

Planned Parenthood's 'Across the Line' VR (screenshot)

Planned Parenthood’s New Virtual Reality Video Simulates Clinic Harassment

Using actual recorded audio and video taken from outside their clinics, Planned Parenthood has produced an immersive virtual reality experience that puts you on scene as anti-abortion extremists try to intimidate patients seeking services.

by Tanja M.read more. “Planned Parenthood’s new VR experience simulates clinic harassment”

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Call: SMPTE 2016 Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition

Call for Papers for SMPTE 2016

SMPTE 2016 Annual Technical Conference & Exhibition
Hollywood, California
24-28 October, 2016

https://www.smpte.org/ATC

Deadline for Submissions of Abstracts is 22 April, 2016

The Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers® (SMPTE®), a leader in motion-imaging standards and education for the communications, media, entertainment, and technology industries, is seeking proposals for technical papers for the SMPTE 2016 Annual Technical Conference & Exhibition (SMPTE 2016) – Monday, 24 Oct. – Friday, 28 Oct. 2016 in Hollywood, California. The Technical Conference takes place 25-27 October. This is the year of the SMPTE centennial celebration so be part of the is the world’s premier forum for the exploration of media and entertainment technology covering current and future developments in media technology, content creation, image and sound, and the allied arts and sciences. Conference delegates are the industry’s world renowned technology thought leaders and decision makers that are leading the evolving motion-imaging industry.… read more. “Call: SMPTE 2016 Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition”

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Call: “Intelligent Machines and Human Beings: Challenges of a new Relationship” – Special issue of J. of Ethics and Info. Tech.

Call for Papers for a Special Issue
“Intelligent Machines and Human Beings: Challenges of a new Relationship”
Journal of Ethics and Information Technology

Some scholars claim that the technological development of intelligent machines will soon outdo the human capacities in various fields of expertise within the next 50 years, for example in games such as chess, automated driving systems, the health sector, and war robots. Very complex artificial systems will become a socio-political milestone concerning the relationship between human beings and machines. This includes new forms of alterity and otherness: long gone are the days when the term “robot” mainly refers to human androids. For example, we need to discuss the anthropological status of cyborgs – when human beings merge with machines. Another challenge is the role and status of hybrid systems due to their double- or better multiple-nature. They consist of two or more fully autonomous subsystems that temporarily coalesce.… read more. “Call: “Intelligent Machines and Human Beings: Challenges of a new Relationship” – Special issue of J. of Ethics and Info. Tech.”

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Challenges in designing the personalities of virtual assistants

[The evolution of AI and related technologies is raising new and interesting challenges for the designers of virtual assistants – to evoke the most effective presence responses, should the assistants be just functional or emotionally connect with users? How closely should they mimic human behavior? This story is from The Washington Post, where it features an additional image. –Matthew]

Cortana writing team

[Image: Redmond, WASH. – A meeting of Microsoft Cortana’s writing team – which includes a poet, a novelist, a playwright, and a former tv writer. Leading the meeting is Deborah Harrison, Senior Content Developer, who talks with Chris O’Connor, also a Senior Content Developer, to her left. Across the table is August Niehaus, a writer for the team (Photo by Stuart Isett for The Washington Post)]

The next hot job in Silicon Valley is for poets

By Elizabeth Dwoskin
April 7, 2016

SAN FRANCISCO — Until recently, Robyn Ewing was a writer in Hollywood, developing TV scripts and pitching pilots to film studios.… read more. “Challenges in designing the personalities of virtual assistants”

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Job: Research Associate on Google Expeditions project at Open University

Research Associate in Human-Computer Interaction and Education Research

Open University – Faculty of Mathematics, Computing and Technology

Location:  Milton Keynes
Salary:  £28,982 to £32,600
Hours:  Full Time
Contract Type:  Contract / Temporary
Placed on:  7th April 2016
Closes:  5th May 2016
Job Ref:  12198

The Department of Computing and Communications at The Open University is looking to appoint a Research Associate in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) and Education Research as a part of Google-funded Virtual Reality research project.

The focus of this project is to investigate the pedagogical and usability effectiveness of virtual reality (VR)-based virtual field trips – Google Expeditions (GEs) – in fieldwork in subjects such as biology and geography that have a long tradition of physical fieldwork. The project aims to answer questions such as: whether VR-based field trips can be used effectively to support and enhance physical fieldwork?; and can virtual field trips support self-directed inquiry-based learning?… read more. “Job: Research Associate on Google Expeditions project at Open University”

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The ultimate presence illusion: Experts debate whether we are real or virtual

[The idea, and the last sentence here, are unsettling, but this story from Scientific American considers the fascinating prospect that we and everything and everyone we know is a simulation designed as a presence illusion. For more on this topic, see (Tele)Presence and Simulation: Questions of Epistemology, Religion, Morality, and Mortality (pdf) by Jones, Lombard and Jasak. –Matthew]

A scene from the film The Thirteenth Floor

[Image: A scene from the film The Thirteenth Floor (IMDb entry). Source: The Ghost Diaries.]

Are We Living in a Computer Simulation?

High-profile physicists and philosophers gathered to debate whether we are real or virtual—and what it means either way

By Clara Moskowitz on April 7, 2016

NEW YORK—If you, me and every person and thing in the cosmos were actually characters in some giant computer game, we would not necessarily know it. The idea that the universe is a simulation sounds more like the plot of “The Matrix,” but it is also a legitimate scientific hypothesis.… read more. “The ultimate presence illusion: Experts debate whether we are real or virtual”

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Reproducing odors for presence: A Turing Test for artificial olfaction

[This story from MIT Technology Review raises interesting questions about the role of olfaction in perception and presence, and about how to test the effectiveness of artificially-generated odors. Follow the link at the end for the new article by David Harel. –Matthew]

Olfaction process graphic

Turing Tests and the Problem of Artificial Olfaction

Unlike sight and sound, smells have never been accurately reproduced. Now one researcher has begun to think seriously about how artificial olfaction might work.

by Emerging Technology from the arXiv
April 7, 2016

Here’s an interesting problem. When it comes to human senses, we’ve found ways to reproduce the look and sound of the real world reasonably accurately. There are even technologies for reproducing the feel of certain experiences, such as flight and car simulators.

But the problem of reproducing smell is much more intractable. The 1960 SmelloVision experiment is a case in point.… read more. “Reproducing odors for presence: A Turing Test for artificial olfaction”

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Job: University of Reading PhD studentship – ArtLab: Engaging with People and Technology

Fees-only PhD studentship in Art, University of Reading

Project title: ArtLab: Engaging with People and Technology

See http://www.jobs.ac.uk/job/ANH471/phd-studentship-in-art/

ArtLab (www.readingartlab.wordpress.com) is a research area in the department of Art, University of Reading, that combines art and technology to promote public engagement and widening participation. We are offering a practice-based research PhD opportunity for an artist to explore their creative practice through the diverse applications of 21st century creative technologies. We are looking for an artist who works with or is keen to learn to work with a range of technologies, including but not limited to virtual and augmented reality, 3D printing, programmable electronics and interactive technology to develop research focusing on combining art+technology approaches to community engagement, accessibility and education.

Anticipated outputs will include interactive artworks, public engagement events, outreach workshops, seminars and a conference. These outputs will feed into novel approaches for public engagement through art and technology as part of ArtLab activities.… read more. “Job: University of Reading PhD studentship – ArtLab: Engaging with People and Technology”

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