At its F8 developer conference, Facebook revealed that it would be rolling out a slew of new features for its Live Video service to help the site steal users away from the current king of streaming apps, Periscope.Yesterday, one of those updates arrived on the desktop: an interactive map that shows streamers from across the world.Once you re connected, you ll see a list of the most popular streams down the left side of the page; but some of the most enjoyable moments come from checking out random users across the world.With the feature still being in its infancy, the feeds do vary in quality and most of them seem to have under 100 viewers.I spent several minutes fascinated by a Columbian man having a deep, albeit one-way, conversation with his cat.Dots indicate the areas where streams are taking place, hovering over one will bring up a preview, and clicking on it will expand so you can post comments.
This video is by far the most complicated 360 video released by the group - but not the most jarring.It's not even just spherical.Depending on which way your screen is pointing, you'll see something different, and the environment will react to your vision.If you have an iPhone or iPad, you'll want to head to the Apple app store to find the Google Spotlight Stories app.There you'll find Google and the groups they worked with for this video at work.If you're in search of the full collection of videos like this as produced by Google, head to the Google Spotlight Stories collection on YouTube.
Google took the I/O opportunity to show off its latest Spotlight Story, called Pearl.It s not just a static video — not only can you move the screen around to look where you want, but you can also interact with the video.Depending on where you look, you ll see different things, and the environment will change accordingly.Osbourne himself talked about the film at Google I/O, saying that he wanted the audience to be in control more.Sure, this isn t the first time we ve seen a 360-degree video from Google, but this one certainly has more depth than the others.And, if you want to see the entire Spotlight selection, head to the Spotlight Stories YouTube channel.
It also showed off a demo of a classic fantasy-type dungeon experience running on the platform.GamesBeat interviewed Nick Whiting, the technical director at Epic Games, about Epic s support for Daydream.GamesBeat: What makes Daydream different from other VR platforms?Nick Whiting: It s mobile-based.It seems like you guys were deliberately trying to show something that looked like a video game.Whiting: We wanted to do something where you had interaction in the world.Is this something where you re going to produce money-making experiences this year, or are you still in an experimental phase?Whiting: It s definitely something where we want to be on the up side of the wave.We don t have a decisive winner.Nobody knows what form the VR market is going to take in the next few years.Unreal can still deliver those kinds of experiences.We can get a lot of valuable lessons about what works and what doesn t.GamesBeat: The Unreal engine experiences we ve seen so far have tended to show us new ideas and new images, rather than stuff based on familiar Epic franchises.
Over the past few months, Apple, Huawei, ZTE, and others have made splashes in the smartphone world with tech accurate enough to measure the amount of downward force on a screen, or force touch, as the capability s become known.But researchers at the University of Michigan may have discovered a low-cost, easy solution: a 3D Touch-like system of feedback that s adaptable to practically any smartphone, recognizes when weight s being applied to the touchscreen, and that can even tell when the phone s being squeezed.Once booted, the app generates a constant, 18 kHz tone inaudible to human ears that the phone emits through its speakers.When force is applied to the phone s touchscreen with a finger or object, the resulting acoustic shift — a nearly microscopic expansion and contraction of the tiny, cavernous spaces within the handset s housing — alter the tonal frequency.Shin, much like Apple, Huawei, and others, see force touch as a paradigm shift in interactivity.I think we re offering a natural interface, like how you turn a knob, said Yu Chih Tung, a doctoral student in the University of Michigan s computer science program who partnered with Shin to create ForcePhone.
The Google app for iPhone and iPads is getting a juicy update today that will help load pages faster.The search giant announced a major update to the Google app for iOS, bringing Accelerated Mobile Pages AMP along for the ride.AMP works similarly to Facebook's Instant Articles technology as both companies try to speed up web browsing.The feature loads a mobile-optimized version of a web page that strips out superfluous elements.The page still loads ads to ensure sites make money, but restricts the interactivity of pages by limiting the use of JavaScript.Today's update brings iPhone and iPad users up to speed with some of Android's features, a reason to rejoice if you're on Apple's platform.
The Asus Zenbo AsusTaiwanese electronics maker Asus launched a smart mini robot called Zenbo at Computex 2016.It is the brainchild of Asus Chairman Johney Shih who had a vision for enabling robotic computing and making it available to the public at large.Zenbo has a built-in library of stories that it can tell in a variety of entertaining voices, while displaying accompanying images on its screen and controlling the room lighting to add a new level of interactivity and fun to story time for kids.One can rely on it to perform their everyday digital functions like video calls, social media posting, online shopping, and of course stream movies and TV shows through its screen using just voice commands.Although there are lots of robots like these in the Chinese market, this is the first to be associated with a relatively bigger and more global name like Asus and the availability of the robot also seems more promising than others.If the Zenbo can do things as claimed by the company it may just give really tough competition to the Echo and other devices.
Zappar has built augmented reality and virtual reality tools that make it easy for people to create mobile content for these emerging forms of media.The ZapWorks tools are on display at the Augmented World Expo in Santa Clara, California.It wants to enable digital creatives to make snackable and immersive experiences.ZapWorks has been in development for more than five years.The company built it to meet its own need for powerful AR creation tools, as it created attention-grabbing AR campaigns for partners like Rovio for Angry Birds, Coca-Cola, Pez, and Warner Bros. Worldwide, we ve made thousands of bite-sized AR experiences for hundreds of brands over the past five years, using our proprietary authoring tools to help partners engage with their audience on mobile and sell more product, said Caspar Thykier, cofounder and CEO of Zappar, in a statement.Instead of keeping the tools to ourselves, and in line with our mission to truly democratize AR for the first time, we re setting the full suite loose through ZapWorks—reimagining what s possible on the mobile canvas as we begin to not only look at our phone screens, but see through them.We pride ourselves on being the pioneer of interactive candy, so it s a natural next step to move into AR and add another layer of interactivity for our customers.What Zappar is doing with these tools will really bring this tech to bear in the marketplace.
AMD has formally announced the Radeon RX 480, a $199 Polaris-based graphics card it claims is ready for virtual reality use.Aimed, entirely unsurprisingly, at those looking to build a new rig or upgrade an existing system for use with virtual reality headsets, the Polaris-based Radeon RX 480 is claimed to offer 'premium VR capability' - which, using the yardstick normally associated with such performance, means it should be roughly equal to Nvidia's last-generation GeForce GTX 970 graphics card - at a price of just $199 around £138 excluding taxes for the 4GB model.'VR is the most eagerly anticipated development in immersive computing ever, and is the realisation of AMD's Cinema 2.0 vision that predicted the convergence of immersive experiences and interactivity back in 2008,' crowed Raja Koduri, AMD's senior vice president and chief architect for the Radeon Technologies Group.The Radeon RX Series is a disruptive technology that adds rocket fuel to the VR inflection point, turning it into a technology with transformational relevance to consumers.'Combined with architectural improvements, the result is claimed to be a low-power, high-performance card at a price point AMD hopes will help it win back some of the market share it has lost to Nvidia in recent years.At the same time, AMD announced the commercial release of the Bristol Ridge and Stoney Ridge APUs for mobile devices, claiming improved compute performance and lower power draw in devices ranging from 35W FX processors to its 15W A9, A6, and E2 ultra-mobile and embedded parts.
The ZenBook 3 come with a fixed keyboard that can be used comfortably on your lap the Surface is more for tables , yet it also manages to achieve a relatively generous 0.8mm of travel for each key.Microsoft's stylus ships with every device, and adds a whole new level of note-taking/scribbling interactivity that the ZenBook 3 lacks.Similarly pricedWhile we're looking at two very takes on ultra-portable computing here, the end results are similarly priced.Its incredible desirable design and powerful hardware still, months on, make it one of the most desirable devices on the market today.The changes include fixes for the sleep/battery drain bug that meant putting your machine to sleep did not necessarily mean it wasn't burning through the battery, and there have also been several fixes released for various graphics driver-related bugs.In theory, the docking system works in the same way it did on the Surface Pro 3, using a magnetic lock to hold the stylus on the tablet s short side.
Announced at the Computex Expo 2016 in Taiwan, the RX 480 spearheads AMD's strategic focus on bringing affordable virtual reality experiences to PC via the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.With price still a key factor in adoption rates for VR, AMD hopes that the card's Polaris-based architecture – the fourth generation of the company's Graphics Core Next GCN tech – will boost VR sales and act as the "catalyst for the expansion of the addressable market to an estimated 100 million consumers over the next 10 years".With an enviable spec for such a low-price point, the RX 480 could adequately fit the bill for existing desktop owners looking to upgrade their PCs and enter virtual reality craze, as well as those hoping to build their first VR-ready rig on the cheap."VR is the most eagerly anticipated development in immersive computing ever, and is the realisation of AMD's Cinema 2.0 vision that predicted the convergence of immersive experiences and interactivity back in 2008," said Raja Koduri, the senior vice president and chief architect at AMD's Radeon Technologies Group."The Radeon RX Series is a disruptive technology that adds rocket fuel to the VR inflection point, turning it into a technology with transformational relevance to consumers."The GTX 1070 and the eye-watering nine teraflop GTX 1080 are aimed squarely at the enthusiast market, with the GTX 1070's $379 starting price still adding a considerable cost to the entire VR package.
View between fits of rage-joy at the success of the Warriors see GIF below , Apple exec Eddie Cue may want to channel his NBA fervor in another, more productive direction — the new NBA Fit app.The NBA's first-ever fitness app, launched on Wednesday, was produced in partnership with Under Armour, combining the league's exclusive content with the fitness interactivity of the Under Armour Connected Fitness platform.SEE ALSO: The Rock's new motivational app may finally get you off your ass and into the gymUsing the app you can track and share fitness goals and progress as well as participate in virtual fitness training challenges."Through this partnership, we are able to combine Under Armour s connected fitness expertise with the league s fitness knowledge to create an experience that inspires people to be active, eat healthy and play together," Todd Jacobson, the NBA's senior vice president of social responsibility, said in a statement on the league's website.The tie-up with Under Armour is also synergistic in another way: Under Armour's biggest star endorser, Stephen Curry, is also the NBA's current MVP, drawing in big ratings for the league during the NBA playoffs in recent weeks.In many ways, the app looks like a play by the NBA to create a kind of mobile app-based social network.
And working with our publisher, Hachette, plus some very well respected video games developers at Insight Studios, we think we may be onto something.The concept is simple: the G-Story format mixes traditional written story narrative with real gameplay challenges.Study after study from the Literacy Trust, the Reading Agency and similar bodies show that uncommitted readers are more likely to be motivated by reading from a screen than from paper.In our Outernet series, developed with Harry Potter guru Barry Cunningham over 15 years ago, we had a narrative in books that was extended on the Web - by visiting the Outernet site and inputting passwords embedded in the text of the books, more narrative, interactivity and gameplay could be accessed.When the player takes a shot on goal, he may score - or he may miss.Every one of those eventualities had to be considered and described.
How can open data solutions, visualization of big data and interactivity to hang together with industrial automation and digitisation?In the same way that drawings and maps are more visual than drawing, and map data in tabular form or as graphs , all the data can be better described if the visualization is done with multidimensional symbolic language that is similar to the reality that the numbers represent.This visualization speeds up the learning and able to to a greater extent to describe the implicit knowledge, skills, that might otherwise be lost.Niklas Johansson: Interactive visualizations and digital services can help you, as a company critically questioning the possibilities of their own processes and see any alternative and more efficient production.One result may be that companies can focus on innovative to develop their business and become more competitive both nationally and internationally.We are sure that there is a great need to be able to collect data from different sources and visualize it in aggregate on a helhetsnivå.
Holocaust survivors are having their life stories recorded to create 3D interactive videos.The technology uses natural language understanding, similar to a smartphone's personal voice assistant app, to allow viewers to ask the survivors about their life and experiences.After converting speech into text, the system finds the best video response to match the question asked.The project could eventually be used in museums or classrooms."You can read about the Holocaust in a book or see it on a movie or on TV, but until you actually interact with someone who has actually lived this experience in person, it doesn't have the same sort of ... reality that these things actually happened and how horrendous it was," said research scientist Andrew Jones.BBC Click's Marc Cieslak visited the University of Southern California's Institute for Creative Technologies to find out more.
It wants to make esports broadcasts more compelling to watch, bringing multiple camera angles and interactivity into the live streams of furious game matches.New York-based Genvid is starting a limited alpha test soon, and I ve seen a demo of how it could work with a game like Unreal Tournament 2016.The company says this could help esports companies achieve what has been lacking so far: better storytelling, more emotion, a focus on the most-exciting players and action, and a step up in broadcast quality.In esports matches, it s often hard to figure out what s going on.As a result, esports broadcasts, which are generating an estimated $325 million in sponsorship and marketing revenues this year according to market researcher Newzoo , could eventually attract wider, more casual audiences, said Jacob Navok, founder and chief executive of Genvid, in an exclusive interview with GamesBeat.Maybe you could fire up dozens of cameras in a virtual arena.Dynamic cameras, direct input that affects the game state, and clickable interactive video interfaces bring the in-engine spectator experience to livestream feeds.Genvid s platform will be built on top of Amazon s online services, including its graphics processing unit GPU servers.
Even now, playing it is jarring and exhilarating.For the sequel to work, though, the developers must find a way of expanding upon the gut-level experience of playing the original while retaining the rich sensory environment that made it so immersive.What s more, the central character is a woman of color although DICE doesn t address this directly, Faith appears to be Asian who is not a sex object, but a defiant, powerful hero.The game highlights vital points of interactivity—useful pipes and platforms and ledges—in a blood-red shade of crimson.DICE/EAAll of the marketing for Mirror s Edge: Catalyst emphasizes that network of relationships in an encouraging way.It promises, implicitly, that DICE hasn t changed the things players loved most about the original.
When it comes to virtual reality, most people don't really care about how it gets made, they just want to experience it.However, for those that are interested in creating virtual worlds to explore, Valve has some good news for you today.Destinations isn't a new game, but rather a VR content creation package from Valve.This is really exciting, because Valve is handing you the keys to the same Source 2 tool set that they use internally to develop VR locations.They're also including a number of example Destinations that were created using photogrammetry, and one example map, that users can utilize to get a better understanding of how you can add interactivity to your locations.Destinations is currently listed as Early Access, so expect them to continue updating and adding to these tools over the coming months.
That s the view of Brent Bushnell, the cofounder of Two Bit Circus and the opening speaker at the Gamelab game developer event in Barcelona, Spain.At Two Bit Circus, Bushnell and cofounder Eric Gradman have created a way to engineer fun using a combination of interactivity, electronics, and physical real world experiences.Among the events they created was the Steam Carnival, which was held last year in San Francisco and Los Angeles as a collection of interactive experiences, such as a real live version of Asteroids where players zap life-size rocks projected on the floor.My cofounder and I were frustrated with out-of-home entertainment, which hasn t changed since laser tag and mini golf, he said.The company has created its Steam Carnival, which will move to Dallas this year.Two Bit Circus also created a wall of buttons, which is a mash-up of Whack-A-Mole and Twister.It is also creating virtual reality entertainment and its story rooms such as an interactive space adventure.And it created a VR experience where you can feel like a football player on the gridiron.One thing he has found is that millennials value experiences over owning things, Brent said.And experiment.Disclosure; The Gamelab organizers paid my way to Barcelona.
Ads on digital billboards are now being triggered by four speeds of passing trafficJun 30, 2016 by Barry LevineNew campaign for Dannon Yogurt goes beyond previous message-changing based only on slow and fast traffic.Why the digital advertising ecosystem loves nativeJun 30, 2016 by James SmithColumnist James Smith explains why native advertising is a win for consumers, publishers and advertisers.