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HTC Vive Cosmos VR Headset Review

October 12, 2019 | Articles, Blog | 100 Comments

HTC Vive Cosmos VR Headset Review


hey everybody its norm from Testim and
welcome back to projections where as you can see in Fermi we’re going to talk
about headsets a day I’ll be reviewing the HTC cosmos which is the newest
desktop-based VR headset from the folks at H T C now
this is the successor the replacement for the original HTC vive though the HTC
vive pro will still be available for the enterprise market this is going to be a
consumer class headset that’s quite a departure actually from the design of
the HTC vive primarily in that it does not use valves steamvr based light house
tracking technically inside out but yourself to use externals laser array it
actually is fully inside out using computer vision with an array of six
cameras and in the spectrum of desktop VR headsets we’re kind of in the end of
what I think of as the first generation all the heads of so far me are kind of
like the second wave of headsets but I don’t when we call these second
generation headsets I think the the groundbreaking technology that’s gonna
really create completely different if your experiences are still probably a
little waste out but we’ve kind of refined the first generation of VR in
terms of tracking in terms of ergonomics and also in terms of display in what you
have on the table here so on kind of the entry-level side there is the oculus
rift S on the high end thousand dollar side there is the valve index and then
sitting in between them is for $700 the HTC cosmos and yes I know technically
windows mix reality headsets are still available kinda but you know as
Microsoft can really do anything with them don’t know so let’s go over the
cosmos based on that criteria let’s talk about ergonomics first you can sell that
it’s actually also departure from both the original vibes kind of plastic strap
and also the deluxe audio head strap which I really like and people have used
to modify their our oculus quest headsets the HTC cosmos is now using a
halo base design also like the rift s and of course PSV are now just because
it’s a halo design doesn’t mean it’s exactly
same type of fit as other halo based design headsets actually a little bit of
variability here first of all there’s a really big pad on the inside a lot of
pressure on the front of your forehead and the angle of the headset if you
actually look at these side by side is less tapered down it’s a less of an
angle than on the rift s I really like the ergonomics of the halo strap on the
rift s and P s mu R because it cups the back of your head that’s what you really
want and for here if you try to pull the head of the strap all the way behind
your skull you actually don’t get as much clarity in the the lenses and the
display and that’s because there is no adjustment on halo style designs
included on the roof s you can’t actually pivot the the display and the
lenses and angle you have to move the whole strap and so for me I wanted to
the same time pull the halo strap all the way back but then I wanted to have
the display kind of tilted forward so I could never get it fully comfortable it
was usable for sure but not my favorite halo strap design now HDC also put in an
interesting design element in that you can flip up the display itself this
whole unit flips up which allows when you wear it you’re wearing it so then
easily get out of VR and gets your computer and interact with the outside
world it’s useful I definitely found myself using that especially during the
setup processes as I was going back to my PC and going through Steam and in
vive port but if I had the option for them to vote that engineering a
different feature I would love to have the ability to move this and lock it in
position say for increased clarity and finding that sweet spot and well gets a
sweet spot when we talk about the display there’s also built-in headphones
and headphones sound quite nice there’s actually a slight difference if you plug
the headset into your computer over a USB 3 port with all bandwidth or versus
a USB 2 or a clogged USB bus in that the audio quality does sound a little
different so make sure that’s plugged into
usb3 bus but if you also want to use your own headphones it’s not too
difficult to unplug this and then plug in your own headphones as well I also
found that the weight distribution of the headset was a little bit front-heavy
and that again goes back to the kind of design they went for their halo head
strap I really wish that if they we’re gonna stick with a fixed angle that they
would have angled the halo strap a little bit further back so cup the back
of my head a little more I did find myself constantly wanting to readjust
the whole time as I was in VR one good thing though is that because you can
flip this up and down it did fit over my glasses very easily in fact of all the
heads since I’ve used it is most easily fits over my glasses and I now have to
worry about the lenses hitting my glasses because it’s actually a good
distance there now the downside is that there is no eye relief on both the psvr
and also the rift s there is a button they can press they can actually slide
the headset front and back for not only for clarity but also if you’re wearing
glasses you can’t do that here it’s it’s locked in it’s that fixed field of view
and what I really want to do was to push the the lenses as close to my eyes as
possible something that I do on the valve index all the time with its eye
relief to maximize that field of view one last bit with the design there is
adjustable IPD on this which is a plus the range is about 61 to 74 and so if
you are outside that average of 65 IPD something like the HTC cosmos would
work for you over the software-based IPD adjustments that don’t work for everyone
on something like the rift s alright from ergonomics let’s start talking
about the panel and the optics this is a very high-resolution panel HTC chose a
panel with combined resolution of 2880 by 1700 now if you want to do math you
remember 2880 by 1600 is technically the resolution of the oculus quest of the
vive pro and of the valve index and the panel they chose here
is an RGB sub-pixel LCD panel which is similar to with LCD panel that valve
chose for the index what’s different though is that this is maxed out at 90
Hertz so it doesn’t go to 120 or 144 I did my testing on both gtx 1070 as well
as 2080 and 1070 could play most games fairly well but with that increase pixel
density did i really notice a difference in terms of the clarity not really that
extra hundred pixels that you get in terms of height from 1600 1700
I don’t think gives you a noticeable benefit and in fact I think the panels
at HCC are sourcing are not quite as good in terms of the pixel fill as
what’s on the valve index I did a lot of a be testing I spent a lot of time with
the valve index and while neither of them exhibit glaring screen door effect
like at this resolution screen or effect with RGB sub pixels is basically gone if
I’m looking and trying to read text at a distance on the cosmos I do notice just
a tiny bit of those edges around the pixels things I did not notice on the
index I do think the pixel fill is not quite as good even though technically
there are more pixels on this resolution display the optics also are an
interesting choice they’re using Fornell lenses on the cosmos and the new
arrangement of lenses they have here does reduce a lot of the godrays and the
ghosting effects in fact I didn’t notice almost any of that even on high contrast
scenes so kudos to the HTC there but the sweet spot as I’m sure you’ve read and
heard is not that great and sweet spot is the place within the lenses where you
can see clear clarity across as much of the lens and and field of view as
possible and so I did find myself constantly adjusting especially since
the headset like I said is a little bit front heavy and it would dip down from
time to time I would constantly have to adjust up to get my eyes into the sweet
spot and once it was in the sweet spot the eye box the amount of clarity that I
could see around the field of view was decent it doesn’t really get blurry
until almost the very of the frame field of view is it’s rated
at 110 degrees which is exactly the same as the very first vibe and and things
like the rift s and again I really wish there was some high relief because all I
want to do is to push that was lenses and display closest to my eyes as
possible I think that with this high technically a high pixel resolution and
pixel density there’s no reason not to get these optics it’s closer eyes to try
to maximize the field of view alright so let’s get to tracking on the HTC cosmos
and here that’s where I think people have had the most questions about it and
where it’s not necessarily the best performing in fact the high bar I still
think is steamvr lighthouse space tracking and if your locker talking
about inside out tracking windows box reality’s pretty good I think what
oculus has done with the inside out tracking on the rift s and their
software optimizations is still ahead of the game compared to what HTC has put
out now there are six cameras here so the field of view of the tracking here
is pretty wide and in optimal conditions the tracking is pretty is pretty good
setup is really easy it’s actually very similar to what you’d find on the oculus
side you have to do a little bit of moving your head around the room to scan
the room like you would on a Windows mix reality headset and then once you’ve
done that if the room is well-lit enough then you then draw your boundaries you
find your floor and the set of process is very quick unlike on the oculus site
it doesn’t retain memory of your spaces so every time you move this to a new
space you’ll have to redo the tracking but again that process is real quick so
I didn’t find it a big hassle in my office which is a normally lit room I
did some testing in this studio as well I was getting the warning message that
TRUCKING required more light now this is a known issue and explains why one went
over to HTC’s offices and did her first demo the roommate had us do this demo
and was so brightly lit and there are a lot of frame things pictures on the
walls in my office there are framed objects in the walls and that should
provide enough hard edges for the computer vision to to track and lock in
but I would get the pop-up message that there wasn’t enough light
there is a patch that was released shortly after this cosmos went to market
that does address that but I was still getting those pop-up messages you need
more light you need more light thankfully you can bypass that and you
still tracking will work and so even as I was looking the room and moving into
spots where there were some dark areas I wasn’t losing tracking all the time also
good is that you could block a few of these cameras and still get tracking
cells able to block either side cameras or the front cameras or block more than
four of the six cameras though then you lose the positional tracking and on the
headset side tracking does come back relatively quickly though on the
controller side it doesn’t come back nearly as fast as I would like
controller tracking is a completely different animal it seems than the
headset tracking because it’s not using IR it’s actually using I think just the
computer vision as opposed to the IR light and you would see on the oculus
side and these are our RGB cameras it’s actually seeing full color so as a side
note you can actually enable a pass-through mode which lets you see the
world through these these two cameras here which are stereo correct so you do
see a 3d version of the world but the resolution on that pass-through is
really low not good enough for reading computers it’s only good enough to see
that there’s a another person in the room so you can engage with them flip
the headset off but that’s the controllers they’re a bunch of blind
spots and it’s something I noticed when I went to do the preview of this headset
– if you move the controllers up close to your face
you lose tracking and so for games where you need to bring like a weapon up to
your face to look down the barrel or look down a scope that’s not gonna work
trying to play a game like Pavlov using the cosmos
I was holding all my rifles out in front of me because I couldn’t use the Scopes
and then what if I didn’t lose tracking by putting the weapon up it would just
then float my hands would float there and when I moved it away it would
definitely take a little bit before it would bounce and relock into a position
more so then I was used to on the rift side or that would make it playable in
game of course there’s some blind spots behind the headset as well you can
easily test this and some like tilt brush
and try to draw a circle around your head and I was actually not too
disappointed by this you lose a little bit of the tracking like right behind
your head and the lines get all swig Li and most of the time it would connect if
I was moving fast enough and connect my drawn circle if I was moving really
slowly it would do some funky things like push the line up to the ceiling and
then relock back in so the controller tracking leaves a little bit to be
desired HCC has said that they’re going to be improving the tracking on the
controllers with software updates over time so well just let’s wait and see
until they actually deliver on that promise now on to controller’s
themselves they’re also a big departure from the HTC vive ones that came out
with the first HTC vive and the vive pro and they actually look a lot like the
oculus touch controllers the new versions that came out with the quest
and the rift s they are significantly a heavier and bigger because they do take
two double-a batteries on each hand which are included with the box and I
gave this to a couple people to use and some people bigger hands actually like
the bigger heavier controllers organ ah mcclee they do feel really good and you
have your standard array of buttons not only the trigger buttons there’s also
now shoulder buttons which default act as trigger buttons and the big
difference between the shoulder and the trigger is that the trigger button on
the bottom is an analog motion with a click at the end much like on the vive
ones and the shoulder button is just a click so actually gives you the option
to have either of those options if you like more responsive click for a shooter
perhaps but no games right now do you make discrete use of triggers and the
shoulders so I’m still waiting for that on the top you have a thumb stick you
have two buttons and of course you have the the vive button that then opens up
the vibe interface this new lens interface for you to select by for games
or steam VR games I did like the thumb stick has good range of motion and also
clicks in depresses across the entire field of motion something which the
valve index controllers at least at launch didn’t exactly do but I think the
thumb sticks are not a great design I really like the valve in next thumb six
and that they’re kind of a Kong cave at the top it’s really nice to grip
onto and they bounce back really quickly the the cosmos thumbstick if you’re in a
game we’re using one to do free locomotion you wanted to press it for
running I actually found my thumb’s feeling pretty tired after you know 30
minutes of play and I really need to take a break because the the motion
there plus the depressing requires a little bit more force a little bit more
strain on my thumb than I liked there is a grip button as well and it’s very
similar to the oculus grip button using your middle finger but it’s not analog
so it is just a click and none of these buttons have capacitive sensors like on
the oculus controllers or on the valve index so there’s no kind of enhanced
hand presence and you get with like the CapSense capabilities of NX and so I’m
curious why HTC didn’t try to incorporate that this is a simple click
I always want to I want that analogue motion because I want my virtual hands
to be able to see how I’m I’m slowly closing them but them but instead
that’s all relegated to the trigger on the controllers battery life actually is
better than I expected we all fear that it was about two hours of battery life
with the batteries that come with the cosmos I was getting about four four and
a half hours and then I quickly swapped them out and using my own rechargeables
I have at home so not a big concern for me yes it’s Falls much short of like the
10 15 plus hours you’d get on the rift side and they’re not built-in plug-in
rechargeables like on the index side but if you buy some and loops that shouldn’t
be a problem for you on the software side HTC is also revamped the interface
you run this through vive port and when you boot into the cosmos there’s a whole
new environment that’s much like their version of the steamvr home environment
you get to walk around this this virtual space you have this little home area you
can decorate and anytime you press the vive logo the vive lens which like this
portal opens up and you can then select your vibe port games cosmos does come
with a six month subscription so HTC’s vive port that’s their all-you-can-eat
netflix style of VR game buffet so if you’re new to VR and there are plenty of
classic games there and new games there like battle wake and to the top and some
really good games there it’s it’s a pretty good value I think and getting
six months for that it’s good but there’s also of course compatibility
with steamvr at least most games in steamvr you can choose your steamvr
games directly from the seem very interface or from the lens and if you
there isn’t direct compatibility with controllers yet people are uploading
their own bindings HTC the content team there is doing that at a pretty good
pace as well it’s not necessarily native out of the box you might still have to
go into steamvr controller settings find the right bindings that people have
uploaded and then incorporate that into your favorite games tweak them to your
specifications and I found the compatibility to be pretty good there so
the question at the end of the day is you know with the changes that the HTC
has made with the cosmos because it is such a big design and technology
departure from the vibe where does a stand in this kind of end of first
generation class of VR headsets and you think if it’s right in the middle
between the rift s and the valve index like if I was going into VR right now
and I only had 300 to 400 dollars to spend four dollars gets you the rift
test which i think is a fantastic price tracking is rock-solid updates that
oculus put out in terms of the blind spots to controller this has really
solve a lot of those problems and if I less than $400 windows because reality
is still there and great for sim games the panel’s are good and the tracking
that inside out tracking has been proven that’s good for the entry level on the
high end the valve index is still my favorite desktop VR headset both from a
comfort side from the field of view that 144 Hertz I think it’s totally worth the
money there and you can buy that piecemeal as an upgrade path if you have
steamvr if the headset is $500 here that leaves the cosmos in a weird spot
because it is $700 and you have to buy that $700 with maybe the promise of
spending and hope of spending more money to unlock the future capabilities
there’s gonna be the ability to go back to seeing VR and swap out this face
plate and then you steamvr tracking if you have lighthouses but that’s gonna
add another two hundred dollars if you want to use wireless capability Wireless
is something HTC has done very well with a vibe Pro and the wireless adapter
that’s $200 and then you have to spend $50 on accessory packets to make that
compatible with this which is something that valve and oculus hasn’t put out yet
so that’s a potential customer base for this but I think the base price of $700
is really where I’m getting hung up on with the cosmos this really feels more
like a $500 headset especially if they’re expecting you to make those
upgrades to expand it in the future $700 plus you know $200 here $200 there to
unpack the full potential of the cosmos I think is a little bit too high so
that’s the status of HCC’s kind of flagship consumer VR headset with the
cosmos and I do think they’re in a little bit of a tough spot they were
early to market and they had a great partnership with valve for the original
vibe which helped them you know cement have a foothold in the VR space but it’s
been a couple years later and Facebook has unlimited money that they can put
into software and hardware design the quest has done really well and on the
valve side they can experiment with things like the knuckles controllers and
and they put out a really high-quality headset they they don’t necessarily need
to make money from HTC they’re running this is a business they do need to make
money from this I think that was what went into their decision for this
pricing and that’s where I think this falls a little bit short I do wish them
the best of luck with this I do hope to see improvements to the cosmos I do want
to see what those up raise down the line will look at and that could very well
save this device from the future well that does it for our look at the HTC
cosmos if you have questions about the headset would love to hear them please
post them in the comments below but we’ll see you next time thanks for
watching you

RealWear Ready Partner: Ubimax

October 9, 2019 | Articles, Blog | No Comments

RealWear Ready Partner: Ubimax


So typical use cases that Ubimax software would be applied in is along four areas. The first area is logistics, which we call
xPick, so you’re moving a good from A to B. And a typical customer would be DHL or Coke. Coke just started in 2019, and they are planning to scale it all around different distribution centers around the globe. The second one is assembly support, customer would be Schlumberger. They have done some time studies that show they are about 15% faster over tablets and about 95% faster over paper when they use a solution like the HMT-1 in combination with our xMake solution. The third one is inspection. Typical customer would again be Schlumberger, or for example Airbus, that uses it in their visual inspection processes which is 41% faster when you use it there. Last but not least it’s about collaboration
as well and that’s xAssist, and a typical customer would be BMW, and they are currently scaling it to all the dealerships in the US that will allow them to get firsthand knowledge so that people when they have difficult repairs on their cars. Typical results we can see is having a performance increase in terms of speed, that is in the line of, probably, for highly optimized processes, maybe 15%. Processes that are not yet so optimized you will see probably around 30 to 50% and up to really incredible numbers like 60, 70%,
depends a little bit on where you start out with. At the same time you improve your quality, and our customers usually tell us, they are able to reduce the error rate really down
to zero.

Oculus Rift: Rick and Morty Virtual Rick-ality | The Completionist


so a couple of months ago oculus set me in oculus rift with their touch controllers and I got super into robo recall haven’t had that much art kid shooting fun in the long while and I really loved playing the game even if I was paid to show it off but since then I’ve logged well over 30 to 40 hours of playing VR games I really enjoy what I’ve played thus far and a few weeks ago me and my girlfriend really got into a cartoon show that I’m sure most of you guys really know well by now called Rick and Morty the show is unstoppable it’s truly a wonderful comedic masterpiece in fact while I was at PAX East this year they had a Rick and Morty VR game available for people to try and it turns out that game actually came out a couple of months ago so I thought now that I have an oculus rift and the game came out and I’m super into the show yo I would really love to talk about Rick and Morty virtual reality so Rick and Morty virtual reality is a game oh sorry one second here go for Girard oh hey mr. oculus marketing guy what’s up oh you found out that I was going to make a video on Rick and Morty and now you just want to pay me money to make the video hell yeah that sounds awesome let’s go but only if I can spend all of the budget on a stupid 3d title sequence with awful air horns and music what was that you’re down let’s go ooh whoa this video is brought to you by oculus get knocking this rift plus touch for the summer offered promotion and an affordable price of 399 do you play such awesome games such as superhot VR Robo recall and block a brutal game about luck the oculus rift plus touch buy one today where do you get one you ask yourself well the link to get one is in the description down below by the auxin is rip plus touch today or else your neighbor Martha’s dog will judge you indefinitely and you wouldn’t want that would you oculus rift plus touch because you want to please your neighbor’s dog Rick and Morty virtual reality is a game that stars you playing as a Morty clone specifically designed to serve the original Rick and Morty the game takes place entirely in morning’s garage although it contains several elements of traveling through different portals to access different locales without a doubt the clear shining star of the game is the writing and vocal performances just looking at Rick and Morty making fun of you before you even begin the game just sets the tone for how the rest is going to go now with the limited physical space of the oculus the game is a little bit limited on how to move you can teleport around the room into three different places the laundry area the work table and the supply rack I think it’s given to say that having the best setup for your oculus is incredibly important but it’s even more so important for Rick and Morty as you’ll be picking up a lot of items off the ground or from hard-to-reach places and while the game recognizes that you want the item you’re pointing towards sometimes it just won’t come to you luckily the developers knew this would be an issue and incorporated a mr. meeseeks box to get you those hard-to-reach items you can actually spot a lot of them at one time if you’d like and killing them is quite funny although unlike the show you have to end their lives after they fulfill their duties not them speaking of mr. meeseeks you kind of are won in this game the whiteboard to your left acts as your current objective telling you what to do almost all the time at some point to be given a SmartWatch that is your communication device for Rick and Morty aside from moving forward throughout the plot by listening to the two of them talking to you this device will help you throughout the entire game anytime your loss or are confused you can simply look at the watch and for the most part you’ll get comedic gold telling you where to go or what to do next Rick and Morty has layers upon layers of references jokes and moments straight from the show it’s fascinating how spot-on they were on this game execution I haven’t laughed Hart in awhile while playing a game in probably ever they even have a game called Troy which is a VR home simulator version of the Rick and Morty arcade game Roy what the hell well where am I my hair’s not bad Morty the rover all points of Rick and Morty’s VR adventure is that you’re a clone which has to serve the purpose of the two protagonists and frankly they don’t give a crap about you in fact there will be many moments where you’ll have to go to hell and I can’t honestly remember the last time I enjoyed dying in a video game scripted or not Rick and Morty VR absolutely would not work normally with standard controls it was designed with VR in mind and honestly that’s great using the cloning device with the controller would not be nearly as fun the activities are endless and they feel super fun to do because not only is the entire game a massive nod to one of the best freakin cartoon shows of all time but the gameplay incorporates all of the wonderful elements of the show into itself there were so many aha moments I had when I figured out what to do next I felt like I was challenged to not look at my watch unless I absolutely had to there’s an entire mini game that focuses on movement you have to activate as many of the knobs and gadgets as quick and as fast as you can and at first that was super stressful but once I got the hang of it poof I was having a great old time and I found myself wanting to do it again and again on the other hand there was one segment why I was legitimately confused for maybe 30 to 45 minutes it involved connecting these two pieces to the rest of an electric board with some specific regulations and requirements I felt like a complete idiot when I finally figured it out even though I thought it was way harder than it needed to be and I have to admit I am a little bit under the recommended amount of room I need when I’m playing with my oculus so take it from me don’t be like me and make sure you have enough room for when you’re playing these games yes I did need more room but I still felt like even after making that room I still had problems trying to pick up and grab items from hard-to-reach places and since there’s not really a good moving mechanic in the game you’ll accumulate junk very quickly especially as you’re fulfilling or failing objectives the game is about trial and error as you move throughout it and at times because you are in VR you can start to feel overwhelmed or maybe even claustrophobic but this is something that can easily be addressed in future titles like Rick and Morty the game is truly an objective puzzle solving game which is way different than that of Robo recall or let’s say superhot VR obviously and in its own way it’s just as fun I do miss the high-octane feeling when using the oculus and there is a section later on in the game that acts as a shooting segment which should hopefully satiate your need for the over-the-top violence Rick and Morty virtual reality was made for Rick and Morty fans and it’s kind of made for completionists too as it has a lot of postgame content such as collectibles and getting higher scores for unlockable I had such genuine good time playing this game I feel like it’s worth it’s $3 price tag it’s one of those games that you’ll get a lot more from each playthrough as you revisit it so if you’ve got an oculus rift I recommend picking this bad boy up and if you don’t have an oculus rift you know what to do to get one brother click that link in the description down below don’t piss off Martha don’t piss off her dachshund make peace with the animals and pick up an oculus rift today that’s it that’s all guys I hope you liked today’s video and hey if you like to add we did let us know in the comments below we got one more VR video on Star Trek coming out in August so get hype for that I’ll see you guys next time

Partner Spotlight: Immersive Reader is now available in MERGE Explorer


Hi, my name is Steve Patti chief marketing officer with MERGE We’re excited to be here today with Microsoft as we’re transforming active learning in the classroom by going beyond the device screen. Now let’s hear from our good friend and educator Jaime Donnelly as she shows you how hi My name is Jamie Donnelly and I share a immersive technology with classrooms all over the world exploring augmented virtual mixed reality in the classroom is not just a hot topic, but it’s a necessary tool for many of our students that really need to engage in their learning and one of the tools out there right now is actually created by MERGE VR and they’ve created all that content in one simple tool this cube and inside of that cube You can explore learning like going into their new module that edu platform and as you go into those exploration tools You can actually scroll through and see these contents come to life with your MERGE cube So you can see that explore it hold it in your hand Understand it fully relate to it in addition They also have the content that’s actually available in there tied to the NGSS standards students if they need it, have the option of listening in and hearing it, seeing it and Exploring that come to life in their classrooms And if you want to explore MERGE right now, You can go to trymerge.com and get this in your classroom today and have it available on your Surface Pro It’s a great opportunity for your students to take that learning to the next level

Hands-On with Tilt Five Augmented Reality Tabletop Gaming!


hey Ron its norm from tested and welcome
back to projections where this week we’re gonna be talking about augmented
reality I had a chance to recently try tilt 5 these are the augmented reality
glasses made by Jerry Ellsworth and her company and based on a technology that
she’s been developing since she was at valve software she took that tech and
launched a product called cast AR about six years ago now and since then has
been iterating on the hardware on the software and on experiences to now
launch a new product called tilt five and I had a chance to chat with her
about what’s changed since Cass a are what’s in this new hardware with type
experiences they’re developing for tabletop AR and all that good stuff
let’s take a listen well Jerry thank you so much for having
us here looking forward to this demo for a long time now I know you’ve been
working on this for years and years and years so the latest iteration of this
technology and what you’re working on it’s an AR headset called tilt five I’ll
say I’m with the company for people who might not know and may have heard
rumblings about like how a our headsets work how does tilt 5 work let’s start
from the basics so our system is kind of unique compared to other systems our
system actually projects out to a special game board which is called a
retroreflector and that allows us to make the headset really high performance
lightweight super wide field-of-view and super comfortable for the user so part
of the the system is it projects out of these silver lenses here down to this
route this retroreflector and it comes back to each user and that allows the
focus of these pixels to be correct so if I put my finger next to a virtual
object it’s in focus and that’s super unique to our system a lot of other
systems have a fixed focus and you can’t focus on real-world objects and the
virtual objects and then also the system is super lightweight so it’s just 85
grams it just weighs nothing it just folds up and slip it on so our main
objective is to have a system you fold the game board out slip the glasses on
and just get right into fun you know no calibrations no complicated setup no
sensors in the room it’s a fundamentally different approach
– AR yeah then what we’ve seen out in the marketplace before where people have
used lenses essentially a projector is on so two waveguides lenses which let
you put objects into real space but have limitations like field of view yeah like
the accomodation vergence problem where things don’t look like they’re in focus
or you have fixed and a plane right there because you’re using the
retro-reflective and essentially projecting out and back end you solve
for a lot of it yeah exactly I mean we like I mean I love the systems that are
like AR anywhere those are really cool but they have limitations we decided to
do AR somewhere it’s kind of our internal way we think of it’s like what
can we do and what can we just nail and make perfect and so with this system
like playing with your friends like head to head or play with your friends
virtually or even solo games like we can nail this and it’s gonna be a great
experience it’s omit the tabletop game board it’s
yeah it’s having this board here which is about like 2 feet by 2 feet where
you’re calling for with the tracking markers around it can be any board game
yeah that you would buy the game store that you were a gen con’ recently people
were flipping out rare or it was awesome you have D&D in there you kept our
defense you can have single-player games multiplayer games action games is so it
doesn’t have to be board games it can be like you know never before have you been
able to sit across the table and play an action like war game with your friends
and that make it really heightens the experience so like if I like pull up
your base I get to see it in your eyes yeah and that’s that’s pretty unique and
all that software is kind of defined and parameterize by the hardware that you’ve
yeah iterated toward we talked about you have this nice yeah I’m here view of it
it really helped helps illustrate I think how this projection system works
they look at the projectors and it’s really novel that looking at here the
projectors actually go toward your eyes bounce yeah yeah so these lenses here
these are actually really special lenses I mean they just look silver and kind of
plain but there’s actually a lot of layers in there this is one of the
inventions I did pat on my back it’s like this actually controls polarization
and the way that the light gets reflected on the inside so that you
get 85% efficiency when the light goes out and back again where if you just had
a silver mirror you’d only get 25% of the light so it’s a very elaborate
high-tech one-way mirror system yeah that doesn’t work the polarization to
make sure that maximum light is transferred to the user but it also
isolates each eye so you get this 3d experience and it also helps isolate
between multiple users so you can have any number of users around there and
then there’s two projectors no the two projectors shine down onto these lenses
and we’ve gone through like five iterations on these and the new ones are
fantastic they’re 110 degree field of view super high fidelity and in really
small and light like even between this iteration in this iteration we shrunk it
down even smaller it’s like two sugar cubes worth of like volume I’m looking
around you know your office you have all these parts everywhere so a projector
like this it’s not something that’s off-the-shelf like you know people
always think that we just get it off the shelf like no this is like four years of
development to make this projector because you can get small projectors but
there’s you know very narrow field of view they have a very shallow depth of
field and so we had all these requirements we had to have like InFocus
over a large depth we had to have a massive field of view had to be super
efficient so that we could run off you know cell phones and right right when
people think of like pico projectors like those would not work great for this
but now a lot of those projectors get too hot thermal was a problem for us too
so we had to come up with solutions so that we get the efficiency of the LEDs
up enough that we weren’t heating the LEDs up and heating the headset so yeah
a lot of work went into the projectors and a projector like that’s one
necessary work well as like no if you point this at the wall it’s only 0.65
lumens or point at your hand you can’t even see right but because of kind of
the amplification of the retroreflector how it just takes all the light and
brings it back to each user you get the super-bright image like we were demoing
at Gen Con and it was probably the most harsh environment we’ve ever convention
lighting these huge like mercury vapour lamps yeah it was super bright and
people are like wow I can’t believe how bright this isn’t
yeah and the objects look opaque and yeah really
are you talk about resolution and these are HP so they’re they’re 720p
all right and then you’re refreshing them at a 180 frames per second 80
frames a second which then needs to talk about how you’re processing all that cuz
games then running at hundred eighty frames no they don’t have to no no
that’s a really cool part of our system and it took us a long time to get here
it’s like I dreamed about this like years ago when I worked at valve I’m
like in the future the game engine is going to run asynchronous from the
actual projection system and in the headset it’s going to do reprojection to
realign the image and do all the prospective transforms that need to be
done and so that’s what we’ve achieved we have a chip on here that receives
images over USB it lands in the chip and then the chip upscales it to 180 frames
per second and does all the reprojection so as you move your head back and forth
or your shift side-to-side the image stays locked to the game board and it’s
updating at this insanely high frame rate in the VR world we hear about
reproduction all the time to compensate for lost frames and it’s very difficult
you know spatial projection for from a lot of movement this is all hardware
base yeah the loop the entire loop is in the
headset which is really unique like VR systems are just brute forcing it by
having giant video cards so what this means is that we can have multiple
headsets running off one PC and as long as the framerate it’s good enough and
you’re happy with the animation right it’s running at 60 frames you could have
two instances of games running at 60 frames or four at 30 frames per second
and for your perspective as long as it’s comfortable as long as I’m used updating
and the reproduction again is updating then you’re usually oh yeah you won’t
have no discomfort yeah you won’t have what’s what’s bad in VR and AR system is
when the tracking goes bad and you drop a frame then awesome the image like goes
flying off somewhere because you had head motion this happens to me all the
time I’ll be sitting on my desk working with unity and I’ll crash unity and I
won’t realize it I’ll be looking at the game board waiting for something to
update it’ll be like come on come on oh you
don’t notice it because the last image is right it’s running basically at zero
frames get the last one frame right but it’s
still smooth it’s just no I should have shown you that we’ll have to fire it
back up I’ll show you that oh it’s neat very cool and then then the tracking
these are the markers oh you’re doing positional tracking of that way say
inside out and what’s unique about our system on the tracking is we have two
cameras that are right here so one of them is 140 degree field of view
infrared camera so you can play at night you can play full daylight so anywhere
in between because we illuminate the game board with infrared light and
that’s on a specific wavelength and we filter the camera so the camera is
another custom-designed piece has a bandpass filter to only respond to that
wavelength of light then we have a second camera in here that runs on a
totally different wavelength of infrared light that’s for tangible so playing
cards and tracking complicated object tracking like tracking miniatures on the
table and that recognize that’s basically computer vision yeah yeah
recognition you can be as simple as QR codes shapes and your your one control
there yeah all that stuff is positionally tracked because you have
that inside out track yep yep man it’s an 8 megapixel camera so it’s super high
res so we can pick out features like it really far distances with it and we
talked about the the tracking field of view being wider than your visual field
with you which so I think you were trying that out you were like clear off
the game board yeah still tracking it yeah and then also you know you did a
thing where you brought a extension to the game yeah you’re also rendering
beyond this because you don’t know the user the system doesn’t know where the
game wardens necessarily except that it’s somewhere within that kind of big
field of view and so I was able to look in and see as far yeah into the world or
even extending the work yeah yeah if you just put another piece of a game board
here like a taught another tile and your your game board just extends and part of
our offering will be will have a base kit which has this fold-out rectangular
board just easy gives you everything you need but then we’ll have the deluxe kit
that has like the tiled system that you can do really fun stuff with like make a
rectangular board if you’re doing D&D right or if you want to have like lots
of vertical you can have a little kickstand so you can tip it up and you
can have all this vertical height out of the game board so that that’s that’s an
interesting thing because extending it I get like you’re having
more surface area which then you can look deeper and more into it but having
an angled game board it doesn’t matter what angle it is because it’s all about
we can’t even tell if you angle this it just it it’s seamless
all you do is just get more vertical it’s it’s a little difficult sometimes
to understand what you’re gonna see when you look at this system a lot of people
are like oh you can never project anything above the game board which is
not true at all you know us sitting here playing a game
side by side I can have objects like this tall off of the game board and it’s
great it’s a great experience all about the angle that you’re looking at the
game board form kind of like you know at a 3d movie things are still coming out
at you both in and out but because it’s wide enough that the angle works and you
can have sterile images that far apart yeah yeah so on this system you can have
like I can’t see anything taller than that but I can see stuff this like in
the center of the game board it’s like this tall easily but if you had a
requirement where I wanted to have something really tall I just took the
the pro board up so there’s a sweet spot in terms of where objects are placed
yeah right in front of my front which tends to be where you’re looking anyway
yeah and what’s funny is people are like well you know it’s gonna clip on the
backside sometimes and it turns out like we play video games all the time that
clip 3d stuff in the back and it’s like it it just works like your brains like
oh yeah that just went off the screen and it feels right well in terms of
sweet spot – one of the things we mentioned earlier is that accommodation
verges I was able to hold a cube up focus on that cube and then focus on
other cubes on the game board and go back look for and go back and forth
immediately you’re nothing that’s changing the rendering what is it about
this projection system the retro reflective material that allows for that
to feel real natural well it’s a combination things it’s kind of
complicated but it’s the aperture of our projectors which send out really tight
ray bundles and then also retroreflector these ray bundles will be going out in
like a cone and it’ll be focusing but since retroreflector brings everything
back again it refocuses them and it brings them through these intersection
points which are correct so it’s like we’re kind of through a clever optical
trick we’re making an entire leg field display without having to compute it and
that works specifically for what you’ve experienced the sweet spot for
tabletop yeah you are at that you know within certain number of meters and like
as close as you want those no minimum focus distance at GenCon we actually had
people like bumping their head into the table like Oh careful wait when you were
first experiment with this I mean people imagine putting this everywhere yeah
right that technically what good work yeah oh yeah yeah we are Maine kid it’s
gonna be like something that you can deploy in the home easy just flip the
game board open slip the glasses on grab your wand and start playing but yeah
there’s some folks that are taking our system and doing really crazy things
like huge domes for location-based experiences so you know all your friends
in this dome you can see each other have a really wide field of you you know and
sharing this virtual experience but again having the parameters of tabletop
that allow the developer to work yeah they all get the same board it’s a
language that exists if you understand your four sides you can do multiple
players so what are some of the game experiences oh well we’re really excited
for our announcement hopefully this is going out after our Kickstarter and
fantasy grounds is coming to our system so for the DeeDee Pathfinder crowd
they’re gonna love this so you can have your whole virtual world laid out in
fantasy grounds the DM gets their own unique view into the space the players
sitting around the table don’t get to see what’s coming until the DM triggers
so the the DM will be able to do things like an eerie mist settles in the valley
and that’s they wave their hand over and eerie mist will come out of their hand
and it’ll be revealed this fog of war will be lifted to the other players and
if your friends can’t login or can’t join you around the table they can login
and you can connect your game board to their game board and so in the DM waves
there and over they would see a virtual representation of the hand and the eerie
fog you know they do a trigger and the monster Springs out because that’s true
asymmetrical play but yeah people are using the same game board so the game
knows there’s gonna be someone in that position it actually doesn’t really
matter where they’re sitting it as long as not rendered properly for them and
some of you can be playing with someone yeah so the DM like could see like well
here’s a trigger point and there could be stats and there could be a monster
sitting here waiting to jump out and the other players are oblivious it until
that moment you trigger it so it’s gonna be great for storytelling so we’re super
excited about that partnership what’s also exciting about that is their system
is truly cross-platform so if your friends don’t have a tilt 5 system yet
you can play on your PC or tablet and still participate there’s the base the
underlying technology and those systems are all the same yeah yeah roll they
bring your ass they have adventure packs that you can download you can bring in
3d assets and work with them yeah that’s super exciting so that’s the D&D crowd
we have a bunch of action games that are going to be shipping with the system so
we have a bunch that we have which are kind of party action games so you have
your friends sitting around the table you have shooting blocks and trying to
grief each other and and do head to head then we have some solo play experience
we have this racing game that’s a very Mario Kart like and then we also it has
a battle arena mode which is really fun so you’re all in this arena it’s got
these spinning discs and stuff and you try to shove your friend’s car it’s kind
of a rocket League like very cool yeah and these are all essentially just like
PC games or a mobile game because you can plug this into yeah Bowl device for
PC or yeah many of them will be on PC and Android devices they just go to
Google Play or you go to steam and you download the game and and you’re good to
go we have a couple developers working on
true card games so locomotives is one of our partners that’s working with our
brand spanking new hardware brave souls and it’s looking really good you got a
little sneak peek of that and so that one’s like a Wild West theme where you
can have up just I think six players they can be either remote it’s truly
cross play also so you can play on your tablet or your PC or on the tilt five
and it’s really up to your developers to choose that they wanted to be really
graphically intensive something with a lot of network play or something that’s
very single-player focus that’s kind of up to up to them exactly
yeah we’re just we’re making a tool you know and we want to put enough you know
tools in the toolbox for you know the developers to make these rich
experiences so that’s why we thought like tracking
physical objects and hands and and cards like super critical you know great
tracking great field of you have them all target a game board so everyone has
the same experience no matter where they’re at you have all the input-output
you have speakers oh yeah we don’t even talk about eleven yeah and this is all
essentially whoever gets one of these can be a developer yeah yes
so each kid is a developer kit so our SDK is super simple like I’m just a chip
designer by trade and I’m writing unity demos every one of those like kind of
cheesy demos that I showed you today was just like a camera test demo that I put
together but our SDK you just take our plug-in drug it drag it on to the camera
and unity or unreal and then that gets your head tracking and then if you want
to use the wand you know the buttons and triggers is
just standard unity input and then for the six degrees of freedom you know it’s
it’s straightforward just hook that to your game object like you can get up and
going in like 10 15 minutes with our system so you got this software side the
Harvard sites being iterated on this is kind of like using production molds now
yeah injection molded plastic you’re getting down to your ID
everything’s getting finalized what’s the roadmap to getting this out
delivering on the cake for starters yeah our timeline is like we already have
some developers working with our kind of pre-production units we’re gonna have a
canary group or kind of an early beta test that’s like q1 yeah yeah it’s gonna
be a smaller group of people that love bug hunting this way goes and then
general availability like the the bulk of the Kickstarter units will go out q2
you know GDC time absolutely or a lot of helpers gonna be interested it really is
one of those technologies that you have to put on and yeah say that about a lot
of the RNA are technologies but like it is don’t know how good it looks until
you put it on so we’re really anxious about our Kickstarter video we’re super
proud about it we’re all but also wringing her hands because we did
compositing in it because to show the experience you kind of have to like
fudge it a little bit and like you have ly slow camp camera angles and you have
like stuff flying off the board which is true for the people that would have been
that are being it’s not necessarily true with him you
have a camera that’s like five degrees off the board or something yeah but what
we’re doing is we’re taking all of the composited shots and we’re doing like
side by sides of like here’s film through the glasses and here’s the
composited shot yeah so hopefully people will give us a little bit of a leeway
because we’re trying to sell the experience because it really is magical
when you try it and if you absolutely and having used a bunch of VR headsets
it really is it’s a different flavor of it and I think the tabletop aspect is
super super cool yeah yeah congratulations with the launch of the
Kickstarter I know it’s been a long time coming yeah and thank you so much for
having here to check it out thank you that was a really enjoyable conversation
for me and I want to thank Jared for being so open about the technology in
these tilt five glasses and what’s changed since they worked on cast a are
and the challenges going forward as they finalize the hardware and also work with
developers on the software when they’re ready to push this out consumers early
next year now did get a chance to use the latest prototype of tilt five for a
variety of tech demos that Jerry showed me and first thing on the hardware it’s
super light they’re pointing this as under 90 grams and while I didn’t have a
scale to to measure it it’s definitely the lightest of any VR or AR headset
I’ve used in recent memory it fit perfectly over my glasses of a plastic
like I said is looks polish and I think in the version I had there was a little
band that could tie so the tighten it to the back of my head and I wanted to do
that but once the glasses were on a couple things I immediately noticed one
it’s a are so I want to see the outside world in the outside world is very
visible not only the field of view to the outside world which some other era
headsets want to narrow that because they want to hide the fact that you
don’t have that much of an AR image either but also the clarity of the
outside world you know yes it is a little bit darker a little bit tinted
then looking through normal glass or plastic but I could interact with people
I was looking at things and I didn’t feel the need to take off those glasses
to read something to look at something you know it is how I think a
should be was also really comfortable was the imagery itself and all the
things that Gerry talked about in terms of the projectors being really bright
even though they’re running on a very low power because the retro-reflective
materials balancing that light directly back into your eye the imagery of the
augmented objects was a vibrant was colorful it was sharp and also had a
really nice frame rate and field of view I did some tests where I moved my head
left and right so I was going beyond the view of the game board and even when I
was looking off to the side of my head I could see the game board
I actually still see the images so that 110 degree field of view for that those
projectors really helps and really is a different type of AR experience if
you’ve used something like a magic leap or a hololens the smoothness of the
motion of the the graphics and the objects that were on the board in the
board or floating above the board also made this really comfortable I know
Jerry quoted about a hundred and eighty frames per second for the projectors and
I’m not sure if that’s alternating frames Nighy on each eye or if they’re
actually 180 on both projectors but regardless the imagery was was super
smooth and I after I interviewed her she did give me that demo again where she
crashed unity and the image was locked in place I almost couldn’t tell that
there weren’t any additional frames I didn’t notice any drop frames at once
that reprojection engine they have inside the hardware to do some
essentially a time warp and space warp and skewing of the images works now of
course if I move my head dramatically a frame or did some crazy lateral movement
did look skewed and it wouldn’t look right so you’re never gonna be running
games at like five frames a second but I can imagine if you’re running at 30fps
or even slightly lower the graphics will still look rock-solid and the images
will still be locked and will never feel like they’re not a part of the real
world even though there’s projected images something I was also truly
impressed by is that seemingly the tilt five technology
solves for the accommodation virgins conflict the idea that these objects
wherever they may look like they’re floating in space will be in focus as
you focus your eyes on them not just because of the stereo overlap I was
looking at these cubes floating above the tabletop surface and as well as
those spread around and really move my head around them and shifting my eyes
focus from one cue to the next and everything looked like they were in the
right place it’s an AR experience that you don’t get out of waveguide bass
headsets right now and I’m still trying to wrap my head around exactly what type
of optical trick allows for this to happen because they’re not generating a
light field they don’t have that type of rendering power on the system but
apparently it’s because of the way the projector it’s shoot all those rays of
light onto this micro surface of this retro reflective material and the way it
bounces back in a way the combine at different planes of focus allows you to
then shift and then see the objects at those variable frames in that sweet spot
which they’ve designed for it was really cool once one of those things that you
really need to try and it’s a thing that you don’t even think about because
things look like the way they’re supposed to in the real world at least
in the right distances as the way they’re supposed to
now the compute stuff is also interesting the demos I saw running off
of a laptop and as Jerry mentioned you could run multiple tilt five headsets
off of a single laptop just based on how much processing power you have on the
laptop what frame rate you want to run the games at and also how many USB ports
it’ll just be USB see right into the headset and so the benefits are of
course you’d only need one computer really to do multiple players it’s gonna
be really open they’re not doing their own version of an app store just
download the games from Steam or the Google Play Store and also the games can
run at different resolutions and then some of the demos I noticed that yes
some of them weren’t necessarily running at native resolution I could see the
tell-tale signs of some anti-alias saying some of the jaggies but again the
movement was so smooth and then some of the games that did look like they’re
running at native resolution that 720p per I was really sharp in terms of the
games the demo I did try were representative of some of
what they’re going for so there was one that was like a marble rolling down a
core so it was really cool to be able to kind of look into the course and even
put some of the retro-reflective material up and see beyond the tabletop
and see how much they’re actually rendering their example of a tower
defense game where I then it was able to throw some tracking markers with QR
codes and then that use that to activate or point with the wand controller and
activate things on that play field and one of the cool things is because there
is computer vision there’s optical tracking of markers they could also do
printing of the markers that’s transparent are not visible to the naked
eye the visible spectrum so it can be something like a CCG car you know a
magic card but underneath it there’s a layer of a QR code and so you’re getting
real true mixed reality with things that play in the real world but also work in
that salt 5 system their partnership with fantasy grounds I think has a lot
of potential because that’s an established platform with licenses for
RPGs like Dungeons & Dragons and so there’s an existing player base so the
existing software stack and it’s cross platform so people with tilt 5 will be
able to play with people who are not in the same room with them who may have
tilt 5 sets or may just be playing on a traditional PC or tablet and so that’s
gonna potentially expand the user base and I think it’s really smart of them
not to design an air system to try to solve for a are everywhere you know with
the complexities of SLAM and mapping and optics that work outside and inside
they’re trying to solve for a our designer a our system with these
parameters of it being a tabletop gaming system or video traditional video gaming
system I would love to play a Diablo like RPG or a gauntlet like RPG on this
2×2 game board and look deep into a spiral staircase and and play with
friends in the room or not in the room I can’t wait for the system to come out
there’s so me a little time before they actually get this out to backers and so
they have time to work on those software experiences working with their dev
partners it’s a great a good launch suite
games and experiences and also to refine that Hardware and further I think
they’re still tweaking I am you and the software related to that but I really am
excited for this and can’t wait to play this when this comes out and I’ll be
backing their Kickstarter and looking forward to that release and if you have
questions about it please feel free to post in the comments below but thanks
for watching we’ll be back next time with more coverage of VR and AR
technologies and I’ll see you next time

Hands-On with HTC Vive Cosmos VR Headset!

September 23, 2019 | Articles, Blog | 100 Comments

Hands-On with HTC Vive Cosmos VR Headset!


hey everybody its Norm from Tested and
welcome back to projections where this week we’re gonna talk about hardware
specifically HCC’s new Vive Cosmos I just got back from demo time with the
cosmos I got to use it for about an hour and wanted to share some of my
impressions with you about our time with it because it is
HTC’s new flagship consumer desktop VR headset replacing the original HTC vive
the vive pro the vive pro i are still be available for enterprise customers but
for consumers and gamers out there this is what they’re going to be pushing as
they phase the original vive out of the marketplace now some details first the
vive cosmos is shipping October 3rd and is available for pure were now at $700
and it’s a desktop class vr headset this is not a competitor to the oculus quest
it’s not stand-alone VR there’s no computer or battery built into the
headset it’s a tethered headset much like the vibe like the vive pro and more
akin now the valve index and also on the oculus side the rift s in fact much
like the oculus rift s it has now inside out positional tracking this is HTC’s
headset we don’t need to use the steam VR lighthouse based tracking system in
fact there are no steamvr lighthouses you place anywhere for the headset or
for their new controllers the headset has six cameras on the front of it so
there are two cameras in the front there’s one pointing it’s up and one
pointing down and two on the side and that’s what allows it to then map out
the room and give you a sense of where you are in virtual space as well as
where the new controllers are relative to you the room I use it in and was
pretty well lit and Tad a little bit of daylight coming in and I’m really
curious what this tracking systems will look like in low light or even in direct
IR light because we know in the in preview experiences on something like
the oculus quest that doesn’t work very well in situations where there’s a
bright sunlight that actually affects the tracking ability of those headsets
now let’s talk about the inside of the headset itself because the display is
also massively changed the panels they’re using now give a combined
resolution of 28 80 by 1700 that’s unlikely 28 80 by 1600 pixel resolution
that you might see in the valve index in the vive Pro and even the oculus quest
and also like the valve index this now is an LCD with an RGB sub pixel
arrangement no ask HTC exactly how they ended up on this panel this resolution
and it were these panels the same physical size as the panels on the
previous generation headsets and they were talking really coy about it all
they would say is they wanted to pick a panel that one was LCD with the RGB sub
pixels you know that was really important and they also wanted to
maximize the pixel density the pixels per degree in the headset and that’s
important because the field of view on this headset is exactly the same field
of view as you would find on the previous generation HTC 5’s they quoted
as about a hundred and ten degrees and for my demo killing from HTC vive first
gen all the way to the cosmos yeah it’s that same field of view the image is
definitely more clear but I will using it really want to push that headset
closer and closer to my eye I suspect also the panel sizes are exactly the
same and you’re gonna get maybe more pixel density on the horizontal plane
then on the vertical plane and if you stand still and you really want to pixel
peep yes you can notice some of that screen door effect and for me I notice
maybe more vertical lines than horizontal lines but when you’re in the
content you’re in experiences in your game if you’re doing any type of
movement you’re not gonna notice at all it was very comfortable to valve’s index
in that regard I think the screen quality is really good it’s running at
90 Hertz and it does have Fornell lenses HTC did say that therefore no lenses are
now 40% improved compared to previous generations in terms of some of the
visual artifacts and I didn’t really get into scenarios where it’s the high
contrast black areas with bright lights I couldn’t tell if the god rays were
there but in things like the blue and sort of garganta
and Museum of the realities I didn’t notice any glow effects or glare or
gadre so I’ll have to take HTC afterward until we get the review units in to do a
formal test and a direct comparison now I said I really wanted to push the
headset close to my glasses to my eyes and I couldn’t because there is no eye
relief now I relief is one of those things that was in the original HTC vive
can pop off the sides and push the the the lenses and they display closer to
your eyes to get slightly bigger field of view and in fact the valve index lets
you do that push really close to her eyeballs to get a really much wider
field of view which I really like but here instead they opted for I think an
ergonomic solution where you can flip up the visor flip up the headset to see the
real world but at the cost of not being able to then adjust the headset adjust
the display I found the sweet spot for the lenses I
thought they were pretty close to their original vibe and that they’re it’s not
a massive sweet spot you have to do a little bit of fiddling with the
headbands a halo style headband to get that sweet spot but once I was in that
speech sweet spot in something like the blue I could shift my eyes around and
almost see edge to edge and see a pretty clear image and you see a lot of blurred
pixels and so I reached a very edge of that field of view ergonomically it is a
halo style strap which you know some people like that it’s easy to tighten
there is a top strap as well to take some up pressure off your head and
pretty generous forehead pad and push it against your forehead to counteract the
the pressure against the back of your head in about my hour of game time with
the cosmos I didn’t get fatigue at all it was pretty comfortable but I was
sweating a little bit by the end of it there also built-in headphones on the
vive cosmos they look a lot like the deluxe audio head strap headphones
although HTC said it’s their best headphones they put in a VR headset
today and the limited time I had with the demos it sounded good and pretty
loud and isolating once I was in there I couldn’t hear what other people were
saying now like previous generations of vive there is a pass-through of sorts
with stereo cameras right in front of the headset so you can DoubleTap the
vive buttons the controllers or could move out to the
edge of the chaperone system and the world will fade in this time in stereo
and also in full RGB color if you have something like the rift s or the oculus
quest and you’ve used their version of pass-through and it’s kind of statically
and grayscale well here it’s not particularly sharp I would say it’s kind
of muddled in terms of the resolution of the cameras but it is color and it is
stereo I don’t think they’re doing any type of reprojection system where
they’re remapping that’s their image on this time type of map of the world so
there’s no geometry but it is a quick and comfortable way to see in the
outside world or of course you can flip up the headset as well one of the
interesting things about the vive cosmos is potential for upgrade ability and
modularity so for example when we looked inside the headset we could see on the
top right hand corner there was a USB see plug as well as a 3.5 millimeter
jack which too then you could use to plug in your own headphones the
headphones themselves do detach if you want to not use those and use your own
and also the front faceplate of the headset is removable as well which then
takes off two of the cameras the one pointing up and down and in the future
HTC is gonna release an add-on that lets you then put on a new face plate that
has the steam VR lighthouse base trackers and then that would allow you
to use something like the index controllers knuckles controllers that
valve is released or even older lighthouse based track controllers like
the HTC vive ones or HTC zone tracking bugs now
I was thinking like why couldn’t you mix and match and use the headsets inside
out tracking with the knuckles controllers out of the box if you have
lighthouses already I think the way Steam ingests tracking information
positional tracking information you essentially have to use one kind of
tracking system for the headset and the controllers it’s for that reason you
couldn’t plug in a Windows mix rowdy headset and use knuckles controllers
with that or the rift s inside out tracking for the headset and use of I’ve
wands or knuckles trollers it’s using steamvr lighthouse
based tracking for everything headset and controllers or that third-party
tracking system in this case that inside out tracking for the cosmos and the
cosmos controller another upgrade that’s going to come in the future is ability
to use the vive wireless system that’s already out from the vive pro and the
HTC vive which will then let the cosmos be tether free getting a wireless signal
from the PC people have that vive wireless system today we’ll need to buy
a separate attachment that allowed to attach to the cosmos now let’s talk
about the controllers now if you look at the controllers they do look a lot like
the new rift s in oculus quest style touch controllers you know there’s that
ring on the top and then there’s a thumb stick and trigger and a grip button but
there are a lot of subtle differences first of all it’s nice and heft you
actually really like the weight and feel of the cosmos controllers and it’s
heavier because they run off of two double-a batteries for each hand as
opposed to just one double a battery or rechargeable battery I know it’s
debatable whether you like having the recharge well battery or a place of
battery I err on liking replaceable batteries because you’re gonna just buy
rechargeable double-a batteries to put it in them but it’s interesting that
they require two doublea’s per controller and from some reports that
only lasts about two hours of use for each before you have to swap them out
now I think it uses more power not just because it’s gonna add weight but
because the tracking is based on this light system that’s emitted from the top
of these rings so if you look at the Rings inlaid on them is this pattern and
that is the kind of QR code style visual tracking system that the cameras look at
to see where the controllers are now in my experience using these controllers I
didn’t notice any jitter or drift and in fact I was able to move my hands behind
my back pretty far back and then quickly turn my
head and the controller would immediately snap into place I didn’t
have to see it drift back into position so that was pretty good although you do
lose tracking if you go right behind your head and of course if you get
really close to the head set I felt like if you got about
three inches or so so the front of the head set that’s when you would lose
positional tracking and you then get rotational tracking HTC did tell me that
they’re gonna work on software improvements to make sure that they’re
getting as much information and using as much information as possible to
compensate for some of that but the biggest issue I had was actually with
occlusion when moving one controller in front of the other controller like this
and that I would definitely lose positional tracking on the hand I was
behind on the second controller the front controller will be blocking that
now on the controller itself it does have a thumb stick and you’ll be happy
to note that I did test the click enos of the thumb six oh you can click it
when the thumb stick is pressed in all directions all extremes of its range of
motion there are two buttons on the top and also a vive button underneath it
that’s the button that you double click to get the stereo image pass through but
also now to activate the revived origin menu to access games in vive port and
then the trigger is now a two part trigger there’s a shoulder button as
well as a trigger button and the trigger button it does depress and then click
now the shoulder button right now is just mapped to the trigger button there
are no games or experiences that I try that made use of the shoulder button if
I presume if you wanted to map it to a gamepad for example and get gamepad
controls you then also get shoulder button controls there’s also a grip
button now and I’m slightly disappointed that that button wasn’t an analog button
it was really just a clicky button so it really has parity with the vive grip
buttons on the side here but not the full analog grip that you would get on
the oculus touch oh no I don’t think there are any big surprises with the
cosmos after reading the specs and then using it you know the tracking was about
as good as I expected the image quality with that resolution with that RGB LCD
panel was good as well there weren’t big ghosting or Gadre effects on the lenses
and the field of view was exactly as I expected since they told me it wasn’t
changed from the previous generations I am slightly disappointed that doesn’t
have that eye relief but it did fit over my glasses pretty comfortably I do like
the fact that it can pop back pop up with
hinge and the halo style headband I felt was comfortable at least during my time
with it it’s available for pre-order now the price is seven hundred dollars so it
is quite a bit more expensive than the rift s for example but you are getting a
much higher image quality display and for those people who pre-order they will
get a year subscription to vive port infinity which is HTC’s kind of all you
can play buffet subscription for about 700 VR experiences it’s gonna ship on
October 3rd and we’re looking forward to getting one in to do a full review in
comparison with other VR headsets but that’s our quick impressions of the HTC
vive cosmos and if you have questions about the headset then you’d like to see
us test in the review please post them in the comments below and we’ll address
them in the review thanks for watching and we’ll see you next time

Virtual Miracles (Episode 2)

September 22, 2019 | Articles, Blog | No Comments

Virtual Miracles (Episode 2)


(dramatic music) – I was a flight engineer
during World War II, and we bombed a city
called Magdeburg, Germany. The navigators got too close to Hanover, and all at once, boom boom
boom, right in our squadron, and broke the co-pilot’s window. And this piece, the dome around my turret, hit that and it was gone. And that’s a piece of a
German anti-aircraft shell. But it had my name on it, but somebody up there
was looking out for me. (dramatic music) – Last year, my superintendent
at the time asked me if there were things that I
wanted to buy for my program. And I said “Yeah, I really want these virtual reality goggles.” He had read somewhere that taking goggles to a senior living center,
and using that technology with the residents,
keeps their minds sharp. We need the kids in our
community to really interact with our older generation so
that we can learn from them. So we can take the knowledge
that they have and remember it. – So tomorrow about 14 students will be going to the UP home. The residents are usually
sitting, waiting for us, and we bring in all the
goggles and then we split up to different residents and explain what place we’re gonna go to first, and just kinda show them how to use them. – My memory, of course, is
what we rely on, is our memory. You can relive some of those
places that we’ve been. – I think Marion usually had a story of almost every place that we’d show. Either he’d been there or
he’d heard things about it, so that was kind of cool. – I really enjoy, I’ve
been to every one of their classes they’ve
had, and how you can look in this little box and see
something and turn your head that doesn’t move, it stays. It kinda blows my mind. – [Connie] I think there
are times that kids sort of get a bad reputation. The residents, they see
these kids who are willing to give their time, willing
to interact with them, willing to talk with them. They just see a different side of kids. – I think that’s a really special thing, for different generations
to interact with each other and bringing technology into it. Kinda showing each other what we know. – You know, that’s what I try to do, is new things all the time. And it makes you wonder, 50 years from now what are we gonna be at. Here’s where I was when
my dome was blown off around my head, was right there. – Marion Turnipseed, he’s always
one of those that’s willing to share his experiences in life. To go there and to meet
people that I would not normally meet, I just feel so
very honored to have met him. – We’re a pretty small
community, and so if like just us doing this and maybe
another school could do something to impact other people, and then it would just be passed on. – Yeah, just keep passing it on. – One thing I think people
our age should really stay away from is criticizing
these young people. Because they’re doing it differently doesn’t mean that it’s wrong. – They’re really on to things. Like if you have a computer problem, just go get a 10-year-old
kid off the street. He’ll probably could fix your computer. (laughing) – The kids that I am teaching today bring forward all their
experiences in life. And that the experiences
that they’re gaining by taking these goggles will affect them for the rest of their lives. And that they continue to bring those experience forward with them. (camera clicking)
(dramatic music)