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I'm all things immersive technologies. VR/MR/AR: let's talk about it. A new type of storytelling is rolling in, so let's get on the bandwagon. Ask me anything!

SabyaClarke
Feb 8, 2018

My name is Sabya Clarke and I am a VR director and content creator. I am the founder of Cinemagick: a B Corporation that creates immersive and audio entertainment.  My passions are making VR more accessible to women, minorities, persons with autism, and other underserved communities. I am an architect: using images, sounds and words to build worlds beyond ourselves through virtual realities. The science, psychology and technology of filmmaking is also a major inspiration, so much so that I set aside time to study new advances in virtual reality and other immersive technologies.

On that note, let's talk! Ask me about anything in immersive technologies: The technology/design, content, ethics, medicinal/psychological applications, industry applications, or just the age old question: What the hell is VR? I'm here to answer and hopefully along the way we can both learn.  

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What demographics should VR really focus on in order to help others?

Feb 13, 2:20PM EST0

Which VR-related company would you claim to be the biggest so far?

Feb 13, 1:03PM EST0

How would you explain VR technology to someone who has little or no knowledge on it?

Feb 13, 1:44AM EST0

What would you say are the main effects new technology has upon society?

Feb 12, 8:28PM EST0

How long would you say that Virtual Reality will take until it is fully approved by a major part of the society?

Feb 11, 4:05PM EST0

When buying VR gear, which one would you recommend?

Feb 10, 9:28PM EST0

Great question.  The best VR gear for you ultimately depends on what you want to get out of your VR experience. For example, you have VIVE and Oculus, the two more popluar VR headsets. VIVE is known for being better with big playspaces where you can move around and has a lser tracking system. But it doesn't have integrated audio or the best experience with 360 head movement.  Oculus is great for smaller spaces, is one of the cheapest, has integrated audio and also has stand-alone VR headsets. It has smoother head movement and head tracking as well. I own an Oculus, because I create and direct cinematic VR, and I need to make sure that the VR stories I create are accessible to a wider audience, and has a better "sit down and look around" experience.

Some other great contenders are Google Daydream and Samsung. I have to say Google isn't quite as far in terms of overall VR equipment/experience. But they have three distinct advantages: Compatibility with Android devices, stunning content, and one of the few wireless, stand-alone headsets out there. VIVE and Oculus have recently come out with theirs, but Google was first and probably will continue to be on the cutting edge of new advancements in VR tech (for now).

Samsung's GearVR is for mobile phones only. And if that's all that you want, that's great! It works well with many Androids and Iphones and has a hand-held controller to go along with it. Recently, they've teamed up with Microsoft to make the Samsung HMD Odyssey. It's not at the level of say, a VIVE or Oculus, but it's a good contender and about the same price as an Oculus. There's also PSVR, the VR section of Sony's Playstation that has some great games, and has recently expanded to include non-gaming content as well.  Again, it depends on what you're looking for, and a lot of VR crazies I know have more than one type of VR headset that they use for different things.  But don't feel the need to overspend based on what everybody says is the best overall. There really is no perfect headset. Yet....

Feb 12, 9:13PM EST0

When did you decided you wanted to get immersed in the Virtual Reality world?

Feb 10, 6:36AM EST0

How did this career improve your personal life?

Feb 9, 2:01PM EST0

What are the main challenges when creating content as a designing architect for VR?

Feb 9, 12:43PM EST0

What was the main use for VR when created?

Feb 9, 12:25PM EST0

What are some of the medicinal/psychological applications of Virtual Reality?

Feb 9, 5:53AM EST0

Great question! There are many medical/psychological applications for VR. Doctors have started using VR to study the brain and other organs, prepare for surgeries, and train students in realistic simulations of the human body. Doctors are also providing patients with VR experiences to manage pain and reduce anxiety. On that note, psychologists are also using VR for anxiety. Not only that, but as a safer way to treat phobias, and other psychological issues. Therapists are using VR to recreate social situations and interactions for persons with autism. This helps them learn better social skills in a safe, guided environment. 

Feb 9, 8:24PM EST0

What are the principal perks of Virtual Reality?

Feb 9, 3:34AM EST0

Is there a possibility that VR lens turn into bigger models within time? Are they going to have integrated sound as well?

Feb 8, 5:22PM EST0

Can Virtual Reality be utilized in scientific processes?

Feb 7, 7:04PM EST0

Absolutely. For example, VR is gaining traction as a legitimate tool for science education. MR or mixed reality is used as well. NASA has used Microsoft's Hololens an MR program, to build a virtual mars rover. They also use virtual reality to recreate planets they've mapped out. Some psychiatrists have also adopted virtual reality to use in reducing anxiety, and facing phobias safely. 

Here's some links that go more in depth:

https://er.educause.edu/blogs/2017/8/ar-and-vr-in-stem-the-new-frontiers-in-science

https://www.sciencenewsforstudents.org/article/cool-jobs-doing-real-science-virtual-worlds

Feb 8, 7:27PM EST0

What has been the most challenging part of this project?

Feb 7, 5:03PM EST0

Has this technology helped you or anyone that you know?

Feb 7, 3:32AM EST0

How does Virtual Reality works exactly? How can it be so immersive?

Feb 7, 3:12AM EST0

What would you like to achieve with your company in the near future?

Feb 6, 3:11PM EST0

What are the main differences between VR, MR and AR?

Feb 6, 2:59PM EST0

Excellent Question! There is a lot of confusion between "The R's" as each one is slightly different and serves a different purpose. But I will preface my answer by saying that many leaders in "The R's" are convinced that within the next 10 years AR, VR, and MR will be combined into one device that toggles between reality settings. 

On that note, VR (Virtual Reality) is a totally immersive experience: either a 360 degree video or "True VR." The main difference here is that one is shot with a 360 camera and can be watched on a phone and a simple cardboard headset. The other is built with CGI and run on gaming engines like Unity or Unreal. Unless someone uploads a "playthrough" on a site like Youtube, you need a powerful enough desktop/laptop and a sophisticated headset such as an oculus rift attached to experience it. (Though that is subject to change with stand-alone headsets such as google's mirage solo).  This VR is also much more immersive and allows for interactivity and gaming.

AR (Augmented Reality) is a little different. It runs on phones, tablets, or special phone-powered AR headsets. The goal is not to totally immerse the viewer, but add-on or augment what the viewer sees in the real world. A great example of this is Pokemon Go. The reality of the world you walk around in is "augmented" by pokemon running around. Augmented reality also has more industrial applications. For example, realtors can transform an empty room into a fully furnished living space, just by using augmented reality and a tablet.

Now MR (Mixed Reality) gets a little fuzzy. It's not AR, and it's not VR. It's somewhere in the middle. Examples of this relatively newer manifestation of "The R's" is google's Magic Leap and Microsoft's Mixed Reality. But what is MR? Well, in VR, you're isolated from the world around you. In AR, you can see the world, but it has no effect on the augmentation. In MR, the real world, and the virtual world are both affected and you can interact with both in real time. The virtual world is just an overlay onto the real object that can be moved and used. 

It can be a little confusing and I'm sure there will be more R's tacked on in the future as technology forges on. But again, every reality is most likely going to co-exist in one device anyway. Here's an article that goes a little more in depth:

 https://www.foundry.com/industries/virtual-reality/vr-mr-ar-confused

Feb 8, 8:57PM EST0

Stating that filmmaking is your major inspiration: Did you ever have the chance to work in a big production? If not, would you like to?

Feb 6, 1:31PM EST0
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