Virtual Re-Anarchy


The world of virtual reality is a blank canvas for opportunities in creating immersive media.  Because of all the internet hype around when the consumer version of Oculus Rift, Sony’s Project Morpheus, or even Valve’s SteamVR will begin hitting the masses, companies have been trying to find a way to capitalize on the market.  Should it be of concern that Facebook’s buyout of Oculus Rift for $2 billion hints at where they think the world will see virtual reality going for the masses?

Recently, at the Silicon Valley Virtual Reality Conference and Expo (SVVR), Philip Rosedale, creator of Second Life, an online virtual world that operates similar to an open source MMORPG, talked about his newest venture, High Fidelity.  High Fidelity aims at using virtual reality headsets and shared computers to create a collective space online.  It is also open to regular old fashioned screens and can use a webcam to track facial features.

Here’s an intro video to High Fidelity.

So, if virtual reality is a simulation of the real world, and we’re getting closer to using our senses to exist in spaces of our own creation, couldn’t we use it to test an autonomous society free of traditions of the past?  Can we try and build and test something virtually, then grab our 3D printers and create it in real life?  There could be bigger implications than most see in how this experience could potentially change ideology…or it could just offer a release from the real world.  Back to High Fidelity…

High Fidelity will provide the framework for the physics of the world space, but it will leave the development open sourced.  In addition, venture capital firm, Vulcan Capital, just invested $11 million in new funding.  So, they’re looking for new talent to help build out this world.

What are some of the useful things VR can achieve as a tool and experiential device?

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Andrew Bliss is an award winning film maker and photographer with experience in writing, directing, producing, editing, and visual effects. He has lived all over the world including Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Italy. He is a first generation Indonesian and a second generation Fin. He has over six years experience as a US Navy broadcast journalist. While in the Navy, he graduated top of his class, won several awards for his work in Europe and Africa, managed Marines at Combat Camera at the Pentagon, and produced a feature film. The film was produced in Italy while on active duty. Prior to serving in the Navy, Andrew was a professional martial artist with numerous awards including Athlete of the Year (1999), International Champion (two years in a row), and was the first competitor to place first in seven events in international competition (two years in a row). He trained with the prestigious Beijing Wushu team and has over ten years experience as a coach and mentor. After serving in the Navy, he taught for Apple, made several award winning short films, and earned a degree in Interactive Design. He is also an alumnus of the USC School of Cinematic Arts.

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