Holodeck server

Now that we are getting things to work in our Virtual Reality set-up at NYU, we are thinking of how others could contribute. At core, what we have is the ability for two or more people to put on lightweight VR head-sets, with no wires trailing, and walking around together in an imaginary space where they can see each other as virtual beings.

We are starting to think of this as our own little Holodeck, and we realize that its success is going to be helped by people creating content for it. So we are working on creating a “Holodeck server”. Anybody who knows how to use some standard freely available game creation software tools, like Unity, can load a virtual game world onto their computer, which starts out looking just like our room at NYU.

From there they can customize anything they want — place virtual flying creatures, raise the ceiling, add a window onto Paris or the Moon, or do whatever strikes their fancy. The key is to make it very easy for people to create worlds of their own. Then anyone who enters our room and dons the headsets can experience that new world, becoming fully immersed in its reality.

One room starts to become many rooms, existing in parallel dimensions. All are folded into the same physical space, and each has a story to tell.

6 thoughts on “Holodeck server”

  1. Hi i have been doing research about VR and its potential. I have read some of your blog and concluded that your technology and VR combined could be used to create a new type of television show in the mould of something that has already existed before here in the UK. (link below)


    Could this be an example of where a holodeck or holodecks could prove to be useful, please tell me what you think?

    Thanks D Pearce

  2. Wow, that show is awesome! I agree that with our technology one could create very interesting new variants of Knightmare.

  3. I was reminded of this post when the following went up today: http://procworld.blogspot.com/2015/02/the-farm-in-voxel-farm.html

    It describes a similar server concept of parallel user layers/dimensions (albeit for conventional, non-VR worlds), but with an element of data mashing: one reality bleeding into another. Shared virtual creative spaces, akin to Vinge’s belief circles, are going to be an incredibly important paradigm going forward.

  4. Makes sense to me. It will be fun to see where that goes. I like a lot of the things Miguel does, including his use of rule based procedural building.

  5. “Success” may also derive from thoughtful selection of use cases.

    For example, years of instructional design and content development in Second Life™ produced only a few types of “build” that persist (scientific simulations and foreign language learning, as examples).

    Much trial and error, there.

    Besides games and entertainment (“flying creatures”), what real world scenarios can be explored in the NYU virtual reality? What tele-presence simulations might best be modeled? What interactions will you facilitate?

  6. Oh dear.

    Besides games and entertainment (“flying creatures”), what real world scenarios can be explored by theatre, by books, by movies, by television? It is obvious, on the face of it, that such so-called ‘media’ would be a complete waste of time, and that any attempt to develop them are, a priori, dead in the water.

    Really, what intelligent person would ever bother attempting to create content for something as obviously silly and artificial as printed words on a page? Let’s not even put in the effort to try, since it is plainly evident that such a folly would be doomed to failure.

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