VR Mars

VR Mars App

With all the Talk about Mars One and Elon Musk’s latest AMA about Mars we thought it would be a great idea to find the best Mars Virtual Reality experience out there right now. This search led us to VR Mars, a great little app that allows you to experience a little of what it would be like to land on Mars.

We started our VR Mars experience with Story Mode, you have just crash landed on Mars and you are the only one there! This would be a terrifying experience, there is no one there to assist you, how do you drink, eat or survive?

Anyway, you find that your ship is not really in the best shape and you go through a few steps which includes finding a way to contact earth until you hit a destination that will assist you.

This would be a terrifying experience, there is no one there to assist you, how do you drink, eat or survive?

The navigation is by buttons that are activated when you focus on them for a period of time which seems to be the normal way things are moving. There is also navigation below you, when you look down you see the option to walk, stand or run.

VR Mars Explore

But moving by foot is not the only option, you can also jump on a big truck left from another mission and cruise around in that. As well as the story mode you also have free mode so you can really get in and explore Mars without constraint.

The version of Mars the team has created is quite realistic as far as I can tell, although I have never been to Mars. ūüôā

The one thing that strikes me is the mountains on the horizon and hills here and there, is this what it would really be like? If so, then how did these mountains come to be, is there tectonic movement just like Earth? Loads of questions ran through my mind as I was walking around this environment.

Another thing I enjoy doing when in a Virtual Reality Experience on the Moon, Pluto or Mars is looking at the sun to see how it actually looks from a further distance and with a different atmosphere.

The sun on Mars looks bigger but not as intense which is probably only half right. It should look smaller you would think.

But all in all this is a fun that is well worth the download. 

 

 

Magma Chamber 360 VR Mix Master Mike

Magma Chamber 360 VR Video

Here we have this amazing creation Magma Chamber 360 VR from DJ¬†Mix Master Mike. Mix Master Mike released a free online album which is called “The Magma Chamber”

it has a twinge of Mad Max in there and perhaps some of Dante’s Inferno thrown in for good measure useful reference..

So, what is Magma Chamber in 360 VR you ask, exactly that. The journey starts in a car with a pretty and cool girl dressed in black, then crash! Next stuff gets weird. The music that Mix Master Mike has created here suits the world 100%. Oh and what a world it is, it has a twinge of Mad Max in there and perhaps some of Dante’s Inferno thrown in for good measure.

This is the 2nd high quality and truly unique Music Video I have seen in 360 desinged for Virtual Reality which is really very exciting. I would hazard a guess that Mix Master Mike will bring out more 360 music video’s and I cannot wait to see what he does with it.

Quite obviously Mike is a very imaginative and talented guy with a brilliant team behind him, he can become a leader in Virtual Reality Music Video’s.

This is best served up wearing your Google Cardboard Headset but can also be watched in normal video if you prefer.

Of course this is only part of the story, check out the quick Behind the Scenes video Mike and the guys put together. I know loads of us are not only interested in the worlds that are built for VR such as this. We are also interested in the thought, methods and also goals that the creators have for the piece.

You can see mentioned here by Jonathan Winbush, no one is really doing this yet. Of course Queen and Google did the amazing Bohemian Rhapsody Experience. Other than that there is nothing really. So bravo guys and gals, this was one very impressive ride. Cannot wait to see your next creation.

Google Expeditions an amazing VR tool for your school

Google Expeditions an amazing VR tool for your school

Imagine, taking your class of 30 to Mt Everest to show them what the Mountain looks like from Base Camp? Well, you can virtually without having to jump on the plane and then taking a Yak to Base Camp. Of course it saves us parents a few dollars too, I could just start to imagine the fees for that excursion!

How it works is pretty simple. A teacher will open up the Google Expeditions App on a Tablet or phone and select the role of guide, you then select your expedition. Lets stick with Mt Everest. Before you go on your expedition you need some explorers to come along with you. This is where your students come into it.

Your students will then open up the expedition app on their devices and because they are on the same network as you, the guide they will then be able to join your expedition to Mt Everest.

Once they have chosen to join the expedition they will just need to select the Google Cardboard as their preferred method of viewing and slot the device into the Google Cardboard Headset and they are ready to go.

Once the students start exploring dialogue comes up on the Guide device which gives you a little more information on this location. Also, you as the guide get an option to select certain points of interest within the Expedition, and it will then place an arrow on the students device to guide them to the area you are talking about right now.

The guys at EdTech 4 Beginners put together this great example of how it works.

Imagine the power in this, your students are sitting right there looking at Mt Everest in Virtual Reality and you are going through various facts about Base Camp. That is as close you can get to taking your class on an excursion without actually going.

The students are in the situation as they would be when on a normal excursion, they can look anywhere they please and explore freestyle and you can then highlight certain area’s in the expedition.

This is certain to excite your class and provide a much more exciting opportunity to learn about many important places around this large and diverse world.

Get the Google Expeditions App for free here! 

Google Daydream View VR and Pixel Phones

Today Google announced the Google Daydream View VR Headset and Pixel Phones. We are focusing on what features the phone provides for Virtual Reality which includes the Daydream VR (Virtual Reality) System and of course the new Headset. 

Lets start with the Phone!

Google Pixel and Pixel XL phones

It is called the Pixel and comes in two sizes. The Pixel is 5.0 inches and the Pixel XL is 5.5 inches which are very nicely sized phones navigate to this website. The first phones will come in three¬†colours, they are ‚ÄúVery Black‚ÄĚ, ‚ÄúReally Blue‚ÄĚ and ‚ÄúQuite Silver‚ÄĚ and they do look sharp.

The Pixel is the first phone released that runs the new Android Nougat Android version. Nougat is the first Android release with a VR platform that we will call the ‚ÄúDaydream VR System‚ÄĚ built into it.

The Daydream VR System will have 50 apps available by the end of 2016. There will be hundreds of more apps to follow up on this as we get into 2017.

The first feature to jump out at us that will be handy for Virtual Reality usage is the awesome battery that the Pixel has!  The video playback on these phones will be sitting at around 13 hours which is huge! How will this translate into VR? We do not know yet as we think the Daydream will suck a bit of juice. But the most amazing thing is that you can charge the phone up to 7 hours battery life in just 15 minutes.

What good is a phone for VR if it has a crappy display? Well, fortunately, the Google Pixels come with a Brilliant AMOLED screen with true blacks and 16.77 million colours. So the screen will not be a problem.

The reason that the Daydream VR System will be able to run on these phones is the Processor.

The new Snapdragon 821 AB Quad Core 2 CPU. This packs a mighty punch and enables all the goodies you need Daydream to run effectively on your phone. All new Android phones will be using a new Snapdragon 821 CPU and hence will be fully compatible with the Daydream VR System.

 

Daydream View Headset:

The Headset is made of a strange material for VR Headsets, it is a microfiber material normally used as clothing. So I guess it is a true wearable.

We do not think it is washable though so please do not throw it into the washing machine. In saying that you can take the foam face-mask from within the View and wash it.

It comes in 3 colours at the moment Snow, Slate and Crimson which all look fantastic. 

This Microfiber material makes the Headset 30 percent lighter than other Headsets so this will make it more comfortable when sitting on your face.

The View Headset will also look after the syncing and orientation of the phone once you insert it which will make things a lot easier than adjusting and pulling the phone in and out. 

The Google View Headset will retail at $79USD and we believe it will be $119 in Australia. Pre Orders will be available from October 21st in Australia and Released Early November.

The big draw card to this Headset is the compact VR controller with a clickable track-pad and motion sensors. This will be similar to a Wii Controller so this will be pretty cool and will work well with the new games being released for the Daydream VR System.

This Controller will enable you to bowl, swing bats and clubs, swords and pilot ships so this will be one of the most important parts of the View Headset other than the phone.

The Daydream VR System will have 50 apps available by the end of 2016. There will be hundreds of more apps to follow up on this as we get into 2017.

YouTube has been re-designed and will act as a personal movie theater as will Apps such as Netflix. We are really looking forward to seeing this aspect of it and will be keen to see how it all looks and if it will eliminate some eye fatigue. If fatigue is not an issue it will be brilliant for a Netflix Binge!

Google Maps with its Street View has been revamped as well and you can now tour over 150 of the worlds best and most amazing hotspots. Things like the Taj Mahal and the Pyramids will be the types of places available for your personal tour.

 

Street View will also work even better in the Daydream VR System and will be controllable by that Remote control. We understand that it will feel more realistic just walking around New York City or the streets of the Gold Coast.

The Google View Headset will retail at $79USD and we believe it will be $119 in Australia. Pre Orders will be available from October 21st in Australia and Released Early November.

Here is the Google Daydream and Pixel Full Announcements if you want to watch them yourself. Enjoy!