The ReadRe Project: Ready Player One

This is the first of a multipart blog series covering re-reads of popular media about Virtual and Augmented Reality. In future installments, I plan to cover classics like William Gibson’s Neuromancer, Vernor Vinge’s Rainbow’s End, Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner and the anime series Ghost in the Shell. The worn premise of the series is that

Rethinking VR/AR Launch Dates

The HTC Vive, Oculus Rift and Microsoft HoloLens all opened for pre-orders in 2016 with plans to ship in early April (or late March in the case of the Oculus). All have run into fulfillment problems creating general confusion for their most ardent fans. I won’t try to go into all the details of what

Sketching Holographic Experiences

These experiences sketches are an initial concept exploration for a pen and paper role playing game like Dungeons & Dragons augmented by mixed reality devices. The first inklings for this were worked out on the HoloLens forums and I want to thank everyone who was kind enough to offer their creative suggestions there. I’ve always

Understanding HoloLens Spatial Mapping and Hologram Ranges

There seems to be some confusion over what the HoloLens’s depth sensor does, on the one hand, and what the HoloLens’s waveguides do, on the other. Ultimately the HoloLens HPU fuses these two two streams into a single image, but understanding the component pieces separately are essential for creating good holographic UX. From what I

HoloLens Occlusion vs Field of View

[Note: this post is entirely my own opinion and purely conjectural.] Best current guesses are that the HoloLens field of view is somewhere between 32 degrees and 40 degrees diagonal. Is this a problem? We’d definitely all like to be able to work with a larger field of view. That’s how we’ve come to imagine

HoloLens Surface Reconstruction XEF File Format

[Update 4/23 – this turns out to be just a re-appropriation of an extension name. Kinect studio doesn’t recognize the HoloLens XEF format and vice-versa.] The HoloLens documentation reveals interesting connections with the Kinect sensor. As most people by now know, the man behind the HoloLens, Alex Kipman, was also behind the Kinect v1 and

HoloLens Hardware Specs

Microsoft is releasing an avalanche of information about HoloLens this week. Within that heap of gold is, finally, clearer information on the actual hardware in the HoloLens headset. I’ve updated my earlier post on How HoloLens Sensors Work to reflect the updated spec list. Here’s what I got wrong: 1. Definitely no internal eye tracking

The Timelessness of Emerging Technology

In the previous post I wrote about “experience.” Here I’d like to talk about the “emerging.” There are two quotations everyone who loves technology or suffers under the burden of technology should be familiar with. The first is Arthur C. Clarke’s quote about technology and magic. The other is William Gibson’s quote about the dissemination

App vs Experience

In a recent talk (captured on Youtube) a Microsoft employee explained the difference between an “app” and an “experience” in this way: “We have divas in our development group and they want to make special names for things.” He expressed an opinion many developers in the Microsoft stack probably share but do not normally say