Virtual Reality, a tech geek dream for decades, was long hobbled by high latency, clunky hardware, and perennially absurd reports on network news. That all changed in 2011, when Palmer Luckey, then 18, built the first Oculus Rift prototype in his parents' garage with iPhone repair money. Awed by its powerful sense of presence, developer John Carmack became a fan and demoed it at E3. The ensuing Kickstarter campaign shattered all fundraising goals, and Facebook controversially bought the rights for a whopping $2 billion -- alienating erstwhile partner Valve Software, the iconic creators of Half-Life/Portal/Steam. A Cambrian explosion of headsets followed: Morpheus, HoloLens, Google Cardboard, Gear VR. But perhaps most interesting is Valve's own counter-project: a breathtaking "room scale" VR set-up with Tron-like "Chaperone" and tracked motion controls called the HTC Vive. With this week's commercial launch of Rift and Vive bringing us to the threshold of a new interactive medium, look inside for guides, notes, and killer apps for this, the stunning arrival of consumer VR. [more inside]
View-Master. It's was, for many, their first exposure to 3D. But where did all those little dioramas come from? Well, sculptor Florence Thomas for one, responsible for these Tom Corbett images. More. Via. Previously.
Digital Artform is a fascinating resource for those interested in 3D graphics, digital painting, and the like. How about turning 2D stills into 3D animations, the truth about motion blur and colour mixing, or outlines in action? Also, a recipe for making your own Viewmaster reels, and the politics of colour saturation.
Solid Space is what I'd consider to be an old school website. A handful of weird things thrown up on a questionable background that truly takes flight with Awful Music and The Dark Side of Pez. And for the truly obsessed? A full list of View Master reels. Bonus!
Still have a Viewmaster? Then get some of these. Or have some made just for you. Or make your own. No Viewmaster? Then look here for instructions to make 3D glasses and stay to look around. Like that extra dimensions? Go here.