ISPR Presence News

Monthly Archives: October 2016

Call: Context in the Home – Workshop of the Context-17 Conference

Call for Papers

Context in the Home
A Workshop of the Context-17 Conference
Paris, France, 20-23 June 2017,

Workshop website:

Submission due: December 30th, 2016


This workshop will bring together researchers and professionals from different domains to discuss key issues in the implementation, evaluation and practical use of context for the development of smart objects, services, and applications that are useful, usable, and desirable in domestic settings. We welcome work on core enabling technologies such as hardware and software infrastructures that support, include or use context, open data for context benchmarking, bottom-up VS top-down approaches to context modeling, machine learning for human intention and activity recognition as well as for detecting exceptions to routines. We also invite work that addresses context from an end-user’s experience including intelligible context representation, controllability and inspectability of learning mechanisms, privacy and trust, as well as lessons learned from real world experiments. At the end of the workshops, we expect to get insights on:

  1. which infrastructure is best suited for efficient context processing for the home; and
  2. how to combine declarative context (e.g. with end user development) and computed context (AI, machine learning)

Applications connected to societal issues such as health and well-being, energy and water consumption, waste, and persuasive systems, are welcome. Read more on Call: Context in the Home – Workshop of the Context-17 Conference…

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My first virtual reality groping

[Here’s a depressing example of the all-too-timely dark side of presence; it’s from Medium, where the story includes two screenshots from the QuiVr game. –Matthew]

Woman using VR

[Image: Source: The Verge]

My First Virtual Reality Groping

October 20, 2016
Jordan Belamire

Last week I was groped in virtual reality — did you know that could happen? I didn’t, but now I’m all the wiser. Read more on My first virtual reality groping…

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Call: AAAI 2017 Workshop on What’s next for AI in games

AAAI 2017 Workshop on What’s next for AI in games
At the Thirty-First AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence (AAAI-17)
San Francisco, California, USA
Workshop Date: February 4 or 5, 2017 (TBD)

Deadline for paper submissions: October 31, 2016 (extended deadline)



With the recent success of AlphaGo, computers now dominate the field of classic board games. While many researchers have already broadened their games-related research beyond the goal of achieving high performance in traditional games, the recent achievement of this milestone result makes it an appropriate time to reflect as a field on what is next in AI in games. With this workshop we seek to bring the broader AI community into this conversation.

This workshop will provide a place for AI researchers working in diverse areas such as machine learning, neural networks, human-aware AI, goal planning, game theory, robotics, and more to share their techniques and findings with those working in games research and the games industry. In the meantime, it provides a venue for game researchers to share their innovation and reflect on current challenges with the broad AI community.

This workshop will consist of three main components: Peer-reviewed paper presentations, invited talks on recent research, and short position talks and a panel discussion on the future of AI in games. We are particularly interested in seeing work that bridges between research communities, applying new approaches or applying work in new or novel domains. Anyone with an interest in AI and Games should consider submitting to or attending this workshop. Read more on Call: AAAI 2017 Workshop on What’s next for AI in games…

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The NBA begins weekly VR broadcasts of basketball games

[Aside from the further expansion of VR presence experiences, it’s interesting that the NBA learned that it had to incorporate elements of traditional broadcasting into its 360-degree live broadcasts to maintain viewer attention and interest. This story is from Fortune. –Matthew]

NBA-NextVR broadcasting

Here’s How the NBA Is Stepping Up Its Virtual Reality Game

by Jonathan Vanian
October 20, 2016

The NBA is getting more serious with virtual reality.

NBA Digital, a joint venture between Turner Sports and the NBA that manages the league’s online properties, said that it will broadcast one basketball game a week that viewers can watch in 360 degrees. The first custom broadcast will debut October 27 when the Sacramento Kings play against the San Antonio Spurs. During the broadcast, the NBA will stream the game in 180-degrees, in which viewers can turn their heads to follow the action, while a graphical display of the game’s statistics will be streamed in another 180-degrees to accompany the broadcast.

Viewers can watch the first game for free as long as they sign up for a free trial of the NBA League Pass, the NBA’s video subscription service, and have a Samsung Gear VR headset as well as the appropriate Samsung smartphone.

Eventually, the NBA will make 360-broadcasts available to the Google Daydream View virtual headset, says Jeff Marsilio, NBA vice president of global media distribution. Marsilio adds that it’s “likely” that other headsets like Facebook’s Oculus Rift , the HTC Vive, and the Sony PlayStation VR will be supported.

The NBA is partnering with virtual reality startup NextVR, which will be doing a lot of the production legwork, such as setting up a broadcasting truck outside the arena and filming the game. NextVR will work with NBA producers on how the game will be presented, and the NBA will have dedicated announcers and sideline reporters who will narrate the game. Read more on The NBA begins weekly VR broadcasts of basketball games…

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Call: 3DUI 2017 – IEEE 12th Symposium on 3D User Interfaces

Call for Papers

3DUI 2017, IEEE 12th Symposium on 3D User Interfaces
18th & 19th March
Los Angeles, California, USA

Abstract submissions due: November 22, 2016 (midnight PST)

Since IEEE 3DUI 2016, there has been an explosion of new technology that requires 3D user interface solutions. There are therefore many open 3D user interface research questions and more new technologies required. The IEEE 3DUI 2017 Symposium is the conference to showcase your results to the community. For that purpose, IEEE 3DUI 2017 solicits high-quality Papers and Technotes within the scope of 3D User Interfaces.

The symposium will last for two days, and will be followed immediately by the IEEE Virtual Reality 2017 conference.

Papers (up to 10 pages) should describe original and mature research results and will typically include some evidence of the value of the research, such as a user evaluation, formal proof, or well-substantiated argument. Technotes (up to 4 pages) should contain unpublished preliminary results of research, application, design or system work. Technotes do not have the hard requirement of an evaluation. The presentation of novel research is a key requirement, and this includes (but is not limited to) technology, techniques, and systems.

Each Paper or Technote should be classifiable as mainly covering 3D UI Research, Application & Design, or Systems using the following guidelines for each:

  • RESEARCH papers should describe results that contribute to advances in state-of-the-art 3D UI, in particular, in the areas of interaction, novel input devices, human-factors, or algorithms.
  • APPLICATION & DESIGN papers should explain how the authors built novel and/or creative 3D UIs to solve interesting problems. Each Paper should include an evaluation of the use of the 3D UIs in the given application domain.
  • SYSTEMS papers should show results that contribute to advances in state-of-the-art 3D UI technology, software or hardware. Papers should describe how the implementers integrated known techniques and technologies to produce an effective 3D UI system, along with any lessons learned in the process, and include an evaluation of the system such as benchmarking of latency, frame-rate, jitter, accuracy, etc. Simply describing a system without providing appropriate measures does not constitute a satisfactory Systems Paper.

Topics of the symposium include (but are not limited to): Read more on Call: 3DUI 2017 – IEEE 12th Symposium on 3D User Interfaces…

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Inception VR wants to be the Netflix of Virtual Reality

[Inception VR looks like another promising step toward the widespread adoption of presence-evoking VR experiences; the story from Digital Trends includes different images and a 2:34 minute interactive video. –Matthew]

Inception VR -Bringing Immersive Experiences to Life

This Company Wants to be the Netflix of Virtual Reality

By Andy Boxall
October 19, 2016

When you want to watch some great streaming video, where do you go? Netflix, perhaps? Amazon Video? There are fantastic original shows from both these titans.

Now, what if you’d like a similar, quality video experience for your virtual reality headset? Sure, there are many apps out there that pull together some great, and not so great, VR videos. But there’s no guarantee of quality, and no single destination to visit where you’ll always find something amazing, cool, and new to watch.

That’s where Inception VR comes in. It wants to bring everything that makes Netflix, HBO, and Amazon Video great to the world of VR. Read more on Inception VR wants to be the Netflix of Virtual Reality…

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Call: MuseumNext Europe 2017

MuseumNext Europe
Rotterdam, The Netherlands
26-28 June, 2017

Deadline Friday 6 January (5pm GMT)

MuseumNext is a global conference series on the future of museums, taking place in the world’s cultural capitals since 2009. The conference is a catalyst for innovation, transformation and collaboration in museums, galleries and heritage sites, with more than 900 individuals from 32 countries joining us in 2016.

Each MuseumNext conference has a theme, around which our community comes together to discuss the future of museums. For our European Museum Conference this theme is inspired by the wish to celebrate those people, ideas and technologies that are changing the landscape of the sector.


We invite opinions, expertise, case studies, discussions and workshops around the points below:

Leaders and cultural entrepreneurs – shaking up the museum sector, pushing boundaries and ensuring the future success and relevance of museums, galleries, science centres and cultural organisations in which they work.

Technology – the use of cutting edge technology in the areas of, interactive campaigns, wearables, virtual reality, augmented reality, gadgets, platforms, games and more in the museum space to engage, nurture and connect.

Practice – Innovative work with communities and schools, social engagement with diverse groups, being an ethical museum, raising the significance of the museum in daily lives, connecting and succeeding.

Touring – How are touring exhibitions reshaping the museum landscape, what are the business models which museums are adopting to profit from touring.

Partnerships – Working together across organisations; in conjunction with individuals, groups, regionally, nationally and internationally, sharing resources, goals and people.

Audiences – elevating engagement, widening attendance, sharing a connection with each visitor through personalization, content and programming. Read more on Call: MuseumNext Europe 2017…

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How about a nice hot cup of virtual tea?

[This is an interesting demonstration of presence and its potential; the story from Engadget includes a second picture, and more information about ALPS’ development and application of haptic technology is available from the company’s website. –Matthew]

ALPS' virtual cup of tea

How about a nice hot cup of virtual tea?

Haptics combined with heating and cooling elements deliver the feeling (if not the taste) of a cup of tea.

Mat Smith

Electronics company ALPS tests (and manufactures) all kinds of things. But its virtual cup, made possible by haptic technology and heat transmission, is the electronics manufacturer at its weird best. The cup, which is the size of a typical tumbler, is able to transmit a material’s tensile strength and even the temperature of your beverage of choosing. That is, as long as it’s cold water in a plastic cup or hot tea in a mug. As you tilt it, you feel the weight of the cup shift, and hear the water slosh around. As Engadget’s Deputy Tea Editor, I can confirm that the effect is… freaky. Read more on How about a nice hot cup of virtual tea?…

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Call: International Conference on Movement and Computing (MOCO17)

Call for Papers – MOCO 2017

International Conference on Movement and Computing (MOCO17)
Intersecting Art, Meaning, Cognition, Technology
28-30th June, London UK
Goldsmiths University of London

Submission deadline:  23 January 2017

We would like to invite submissions for paper presentations, performances, workshops and more to the 4th International Conference on Movement and Computing (MOCO) which is to be held in London.

MOCO is an interdisciplinary conference that explores the use of computational technology to support and understand human movement practice (e.g. computational analysis) as well as movement as a means of interacting with computers (e.g. movement interfaces). This requires a wide range of computational tasks including modeling, representation, segmentation, recognition, classification, or generation of movement information but also an interdisciplinary understanding of movement that ranges from biomechanics to embodied cognition and the phenomenology of bodily experience. We therefore invite submissions from a wide range of disciplines including (but not limited to): Human-Computer Interaction, Psychology, Dance, Artificial Intelligence, Neuroscience, Sports Science, Machine Learning, Cognitive Science, Visual Arts, Robotics, Philosophy, Anthropology, Music, Affective Computing, Games, Healthcare and Animation.

MOCO is open to a wide range of ways of presenting your work. As well as papers for oral and poster presentations, we invite submission of a wide range of practice work such as demos, performances, games, artistic works and movement workshops (in which participants take part in a guided movement activity). We encourage submitters to be creative in proposals for practice sessions and are open to novel formats.

SUGGESTED TOPICS Read more on Call: International Conference on Movement and Computing (MOCO17)…

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The Repository: Universal Orlando’s new VR horror experience scared us silly

[Halloween is a great context for refining intense presence experiences; this story is from IGN, where it includes more images and a 1:16 minute video. More details are available from The Washington Times, and the attraction’s website. –Matthew]

Universal Orlando's Repository uses VR

The Repository: Universal Orlando’s New VR Horror Experience Scared Us Silly

New theme park attraction proves VR isn’t just for videogames anymore.

By Matt Cabral
7 October 2016

Spend a day at Universal Orlando’s two connected theme parks and you’ll likely be asked to don a pair of plastic 3D glasses. Whether going toe-to-tentacle with Doctor Octopus in The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man or facing a fire-breathing dragon in Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts, most of the parks’ coolest rides rely on an extra dimension to deliver a more immersive experience.

Enter the resort’s latest attraction, The Repository, however, and you’ll be asked to put on a far more sophisticated piece of headgear. The horror-themed experience—which runs on selected nights through October 31st as part of the resort’s annual Halloween Horror Nights event—puts thrill-seeking patrons under a pair of virtual reality goggles before letting them loose in an alternate, paranormal world.

While other parks have experimented with VR—or announced plans to do so—the projects have largely integrated the tech into existing attractions. The Repository, though, has been built from the ground up to deliver an experience that incorporates, according to Universal’s Senior Entertainment Director of Art and Design T.J. Mannarino, “Three interactive models: live theater, great technology, and group puzzle-solving.”

As I discovered during my recent trip to the other side, it’s the clever combination of these elements, further complemented by talented actors, detailed sets, and sense-tingling practical effects, that make The Repository one of the most immersive and intimate experiences you’ll find in a theme park or behind a pair of VR goggles. Read more on The Repository: Universal Orlando’s new VR horror experience scared us silly…

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