ISPR Presence News

Category Archives: Presence in the News

News stories explicitly or implicitly related to presence from a wide variety of sources

Zylia’s 6DoF navigable live or recorded immersive audio tech brings new potential for spatial presence

[The company Zylia has developed a new set of immersive audio technologies that expand the potential for evoking spatial presence. The original version of this VRScout story, which was “created in partnership” with Zylia, includes four different images and a third video (“Navigable 360 music streaming experience with the Poznan Philharmonic Orchestra”; also available via YouTube). An August 2020 story from Audio Media International adds this detail:

“’Applications of 6DoF audio and our technology are wide. Cinematic trailers for VR projects, naturally sounded audio for games, live performances recording, artistic audio content for domes with multi-loudspeakers installations, or virtual presentation of unique places are just a few examples,’ says Tomasz Żernicki, CEO of Zylia. ‘As a listener you can freely move throughout the recorded scene going closer, further, up, or down from the sound source. Moreover, spatial resolution is so high that you have a feeling of being there.’”

–Matthew]

[Image: Title screenshot from Zylia video “The Walk Through The Music.” Source: YouTube.]

Zylia’s 3D Audio Technology Could Be The Start Of Virtual Concert Halls

A collaboration with the Poznań Philharmonic Orchestra signals a new era in live-recorded audio for virtual reality creators.read more. “Zylia’s 6DoF navigable live or recorded immersive audio tech brings new potential for spatial presence”

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How virtual reality can unlock an elusive dream state

[A new study explores the connections between two types of presence-related experience. Apparently opportunities or reasons to question the reality status of our experience, including those in VR, helps us initiate lucid dreaming in which we can control what happens. This story from Inverse describes the study and its interesting implications; see also “Scientists engineer dreams to understand the sleeping brain. Technologies such as noninvasive brain stimulation and virtual reality gaming offer insights into how dreams arise and what functions they might serve” in The Scientist. –Matthew]

HOW VIRTUAL REALITY CAN UNLOCK AN ELUSIVE DREAM STATE

Am I dreaming?

By Sarah Wells
December 14, 2020

On a nightly basis, we surrender to the whim of our minds as they weave fantastical (and sometimes, terrifying) dreams for us. Yet, despite logically knowing that ice cream cones are not self-multiplying, we often don’t realize the falseness of these dreamscapes until after we’ve left them.… read more. “How virtual reality can unlock an elusive dream state”

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Finnair’s VR holiday flights point to future of travel

[As reported by Finnair’s Blue Wings magazine, the airline’s virtual flights to visit Santa are not only an entertaining holiday experience for children and families during a pandemic but suggest future widespread applications of the presence-evoking technology. See the original story for a second image; a 15 second trailer is available on YouTube, as is a 2:30 minute promotional video from Visit Rovaniemi titled “Santa Claus presents: Welcome to Rovaniemi, my official hometown in Lapland, Finland”; for more on the Finnish VR studio Zoan, see the company’s website. –Matthew]

FINNAIR’S PIONEERING VR HOLIDAY FLIGHTS POINT TO THE FUTURE OF TRAVEL

Finnair is taking to the skies virtually this holiday season, with eight special trips to Lapland to see Santa utilizing cutting edge virtual reality (VR) technology.

December 8, 2020

Finnair’s VR flights start on December 25th and are available for just €10 per person, with profits going to UNICEF’s fund to help children adversely impacted by the Covid–19 pandemic.… read more. “Finnair’s VR holiday flights point to future of travel”

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‘Her’ in 2020: The AI girlfriend seducing China’s lonely men

[This is a fascinating and disturbing story about the intense presence responses evoked by an AI designed not to serve humans but develop an emotional connection with them. The original version from Sixth Tone includes four more images and a 4:05 minute video. See also a 2016 ISPR Presence News post. –Matthew]

[Image: Left to right: The fourth, fifth, and sixth generations of Xiaoice, released in 2016, 2017, and 2018, respectively. From @小冰 on Weibo]

The AI Girlfriend Seducing China’s Lonely Men

In China, a sassy chat bot is stealing millions of men’s hearts. It’s also recording their most intimate desires and emotions

By Zhang Wanqing; Editor: Dominic Morgan
December 7, 2020

HEBEI, North China — On a frigid winter’s night, Ming Xuan stood on the roof of a high-rise apartment building near his home. He leaned over the ledge, peering down at the street below.… read more. “‘Her’ in 2020: The AI girlfriend seducing China’s lonely men”

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Baobab Studios’ VR stories: Empathy of film, agency of games, motivated by real-life emotions

[In addition to the impressive production values, big names and now important messages in the virtual reality productions of Baobab Studios, two stories in Variety (here and here) highlight the ways the studio is designing increasingly rich presence experiences; note the description of the company’s vision in the last two paragraphs below. For more information see the Baobab Studios website. –Matthew]

Virtual Reality Studio Baobab’s Message of Climate Change Leads to U.N. Partnership

By Carole Horst
December 10, 2020

For Baobab Studios, partnering with the United Nations on VR short “Baba Yaga” was a natural step. The company, which has won awards for its diverse, engaging content, worked with the U.N. and the org’s ActNow app for action on climate change and sustainability to tell the tale of “Baba Yaga,” inspired by ancient legends of witches who protect nature.… read more. “Baobab Studios’ VR stories: Empathy of film, agency of games, motivated by real-life emotions”

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New app Arthur: VR meetings are weird, but they beat our current reality

[Here’s a first-person report on a new virtual reality meeting app, along with some perspective on the potential of VR meetings during and after the pandemic. See the original version in Wired for three more images, and for more perspective see the Computerworld story “Cisco’s Webex vs. Arthur Digital and the future of collaboration and communication: Cisco looks to be moving toward video phones; Arthur is focusing on mixed reality. Somewhere in the mix is the future of communication.” –Matthew]

VR Meetings Are Weird, but They Beat Our Current Reality

A new VR app called Arthur allows you and your distant colleagues to collaborate within a 3D meeting space—as long as you all have headsets handy.

By Lauren Goode
December 8, 2020

The sun never sets in virtual reality. This occurred to me after an hour-long briefing in an Oculus Quest 2 headset.… read more. “New app Arthur: VR meetings are weird, but they beat our current reality”

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Presence after death: Deepak Chopra made a digital clone of himself, and other celebs could soon follow

[The prospect of creating a digital replica of ourselves for people to interact with in even the distant future so that we are remembered and even continue to learn and evolve after we die epitomizes many of the things I find fascinating about presence, including the many complex ethical issues it raises. This CNET story describes some of the latest efforts and issues related to presence after death; see the original for a 1:07 minute video (also available via Vimeo). –Matthew]

[Image: This isn’t Deepak Chopra. It’s Digital Baby Deepak. Credit: Deepak Chopra]

Deepak Chopra made a digital clone of himself, and other celebs could soon follow

I spoke with Digital Deepak and then talked to the real one: Here’s a preview of how celebrities could AI themselves.

By Scott Stein
December 5, 2019

I’m sitting down on a sofa, talking to what looks like a Facetime with Deepak Chopra on a phone.… read more. “Presence after death: Deepak Chopra made a digital clone of himself, and other celebs could soon follow”

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Living in “third person view” with VR and a backpack-mounted camera

[This story from Futurism is about what it’s like to view and interact with the world in the third-person, as if you’re playing a video game, which logically involves multiple types of presence (including self and inverse presence). The original story features a different image; for a related 10 minute video see “Real GTA Simulator!“ on YouTube. –Matthew]

[Image: Source: liam on Twitter]

Living in “Third Person View” With VR and a Backpack-Mounted Camera

With a VR rig and a backpack-mounted camera, you can experience life from a third person view — like a video game character.

By Dan Robitzski
December 7, 2020

Earlier this year, an intriguing meme made the rounds online. It depicted a young man wearing a virtual reality headset and a backpack to which someone had mounted a pole and what appeared to be a small camera.… read more. “Living in “third person view” with VR and a backpack-mounted camera”

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Bring down the Berlin Wall using augmented reality app Minecraft Earth

[This story about a very positive application of augmented reality and gaming technologies to evoke presence and learning is from Adweek. The original version includes two more pictures and a 2:04 minute video (also available via YouTube); I added the three links in the second paragraph. –Matthew]

Bring Down the Berlin Wall Using Augmented Reality in Minecraft Earth

Created by a German museum, simulation puts users in the shoes of those who took part in the historic moment

By Patrick Kulp
December 5, 2020

A Berlin museum focused on life in former East Germany is transporting virtual visitors back to a pivotal moment in history through the power of augmented reality and the popular open-world game Minecraft.

The DDR Museum teamed with Vice-owned creative agency Virtue on an educational campaign that allows anyone to build and tear down full-scale segments of the Berlin Wall through Minecraft Earth, an AR app that superimposes the Microsoft-owned game’s blocky graphics onto a user’s surroundings through their phone camera.… read more. “Bring down the Berlin Wall using augmented reality app Minecraft Earth”

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Future of intimacy: Sex bots, virtual reality, and smart sex toys

[This link-filled Forbes story reviews both the promise and peril of presence-evoking technologies in the area of human sexuality. For more on this topic see –Matthew]

Future Of Intimacy: Sex Bots, Virtual Reality, And Smart Sex Toys

By Bernard Marr, Contributor
November 30, 2020

Now that we have intelligent lightbulbs, doorbells, refrigerators, and more, it was only a matter of time before our most primal and intimate lives became smarter through artificial intelligence. Since sextech was allowed to exhibit at CES 2020 among the health and wellness vendors instead of denied entry or tucked away in the back as in years past, technology intended to augment the human sexual experience might just be on the verge of going mainstream. As more and more people invite artificial intelligence into their bedrooms and most intimate experiences, let’s review the possibilities as well as perils that might bring.… read more. “Future of intimacy: Sex bots, virtual reality, and smart sex toys”

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