Academic research teams in the US have developed a do-it-yourself 3D viewer. FOV2GO is a portable fold-out iPhone and Android viewer that turns a smartphone screen into a 3D virtual reality system.
It costs less than five dollars – the cost of the paper or cardboard materials and you can follow the instructions here.
You fold the viewer together, download a simple demo app and then slip a smartphone into the viewer. Downloadable software from the same site allows users to create their own virtual worlds or environments to display.
“We’re at a unique moment where all the components for creating fully immersive virtual worlds have suddenly become ubiquitous and cheap, often built into devices that we have already in our pockets and on our desktops,” said Perry Hoberman, Research Associate Professor, USC School of Cinema and Television who developed the software that allows the viewer to display stereo images on the Unity game engine.
“All that’s been lacking is a kit that puts all the parts together. That’s what we’ve tried to do with FOV2GO. Our hope is that by making these tools available to artists and designers everywhere, we’ll see VR develop to its true potential as an artistic medium". "Once you marry 3D with a headtracking device which updates the image depending on where someone moves the sense of immersion increases exponentially,” he adds. “I would love to use head-tracking on a cinema audience, even just a slight movement would increase the realism of the immersion.”
The project has been researched at the ICT’s Mixed Reality Lab (MxR) at University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies along with collaborators from the USC School of Cinematic Arts .
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