A Baptist at a Bar Mitzvah

I just attended the first day of the two day annual Oculus Connect conference. I am here because Facebook Oculus is a sponsor of our educational work that brings Chalktalk into shared VR.

The morning started with Mark Zuckerberg giving an inspirational talk about the future of Virtual Reality. After that, there were lots of talks describing specific features Facebook Oculus have added to their platform, and how all of this will help to advance VR for the computer game industry.

It’s clear that the folks at Facebook Oculus have made tremendous strides this last year in VR technology for gaming. In particular, their newly announced standalone Oculus Quest system generated a lot of excitement, and rightly so.

Alas, I felt a little like a misplaced person. Every time there was a new announcement, the audience erupted into loud cheers, and I felt more and more like a fish out of water. I am not, after all, really in the culture of gaming, and my interest in VR is entirely in how it can help to bring people together to tell each other stories.

I was very appreciative of the enthusiasm around me, and the excitement in the air. Yet I also felt disconnected from it. I supposed this might be what it might feel like to be a Baptist at a Bar Mitzvah.

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