Educators in VR on the Road: Engage

ENGAGE is a virtual reality education and corporate training platform that Educators in VR have been working with for months, learning how it works, all its amazing features, and providing feedback on improvements as an educational space. The team at Engage have been amazing to work with, and we are eager to showcase it for our first Educators in VR on the Road series.

Engage Platform - Venus Recorded Presentation

Join us Friday, July 19, 2019, in Engage. Educators in VR co-founder Daniel Dyboski Bryant and the Engage team will be introducing us to the platform and giving us a full tour. Here is a teaser:

When it comes to educational and training VR platforms, Engage is pushing the limits for a high quality, realistic platform. Engage has been working with top specialized educators to develop lessons available for immediately study,

Engage - Meeting with Educators in VR

bringing experts right to your classroom. It has a set of shared 360 surround video viewing made simple and easy to use. There are 1,200+ interactive assets ready to use for sharing and manipulating. For educators needing to film their classes or incorporate screen recording and filming into the educational process, Engage’s ability for spacial recording, immediate playback, and in-world editing is ideal.

Engage comes ready to use or they will work with you to build your own educational and training events for live or recorded interaction. It was build for monetizing as a platform, opening up so many possibilities.

We are eager to show off Engage this Friday so RSVP immediately. There are only room for twenty attendees and there are only a few seats left for this free event.

Educators in VR is dedicated to providing educational events, trainings, and workshops for educators and learners to prepare them for the future of spatial technologies in education. We offer weekly workshops in AltspaceVR and other platforms, and a monthly meetup featuring key educators, trainers, and developers in VR, AR, XR, and MR technology and education.

Join our Educators in VR Discord group, Facebook, and follow us on Twitter for information on meetups and how to become more involved. Consider subscribing to our Educators in VR event subscription channel to receive regular reminders of upcoming events there. We publish member brags and news you can use about virtual reality in education across the entire spectrum of usage from childhood education to health and science to corporate.

Virtual Reality Pioneer: Tom Furness

Tom FurnessIn November 2015, Tom Furness, considered the grandfather of virtual reality, sat down with the team at Voices of the VR Podcast for an in depth interview called “#245: 50 years of VR with Tom Furness: The Super Cockpit, Virtual Retinal Display, HIT Lab, & Virtual World Society.” It’s still worth a listen and read.

Tom Furness has been thinking about virtual reality longer than most VR users have been alive. He built some of the first helmet-mounted displays for the US Air Force, and what would become the Super Cockpit. Leaving the military, he helped found the Human Interface Technology Lab at the University of Washington in Seattle, and created the non-profit, educational association, the Virtual World Society.

The Super Cockpit design by Tom Furness for the US Military.

From the University of Washington Faculty bios:

[Tom Furness] is the inventor of the personal eyewear display, the virtual retinal display, the HALO display and holds 19 patents in advanced sensor, display and interface technologies. With his colleagues Dr. Furness has started 27 companies, two of which are traded on NASDAQ at a market capitalization of > $8 B (USD). In 1998 he received the Discover Award for his invention of the virtual retinal display.

In addition to his academic appointments, Dr. Furness was the Chairman and President of the first Augmented Reality Company: ARToolworks Inc. recently acquire by DAQRI. He also runs his own ‘skunkworks’ company: RATLab LLC (RAT = rockin’ and thinkin’) where he and his colleagues develop advanced technologies for spinoff companies. His current projects deal with developing pulse diagnosis as an early warning system for cardiovascular disease and the start-up of the Virtual World Society, a non-profit for extending virtual reality as a learning system for families.

Tom is also co-inventor of the SPM (spectral matching) technology licensed to Visualant Inc. He continues to serve as a Senior Scientific Advisor for the company and recently received the 2013 SPIE Prism Award for his invention of the ChromaID technology.

Projects by the Virtual World Society include helping 28 sixth grade students at Robert Eagle Staff Middle School in Seattle, overseen by a team of University of Washington engineering students, build virtual worlds that teach STEM subjects related to gravity, light, scale, and momentum. Continue reading

Share Your Favorite Virtual Reality Experience

We’ve started a new discussion area in our Educators in VR Discord group called Favorite VR Experiences.

We are inviting our members to share a special experience with virtual reality. It could be your first time in VR, a story about a particular student or person, or maybe a memory that just stays with you.

Already we have the following:

One is my very first experience of VR. Bought a cheap mobile VR headset with no idea of what VR is. Next thing I was in the International Space Station find a virtual tour. Despite the quality, I was blown away instantly. I’ve never looked back. I’m all in.
Daniel Dyboski-Bryant

I think that every time that I get a student or a colleague to try VR for the first time. They just go really quiet for a few seconds, which is then followed by a series of ‘oh wow’ statements for the following few minutes. The ability to bring that level of happiness, enjoyment and enlightenment to individuals is just priceless.
Tim Jackson

Image from Star Chart VR App.

I knew my 80 year old mother would adore virtual reality, so I wanted to engage her immediately. A long time fan of all things outer space, I choose one of the space apps that takes you, literally, out into space visiting distance stars and planets. We were in her large master bathroom and she was standing next to me in her nighty, and I so wish I had a picture of that moment. She put the Samsung Gear headset on and stood next to me, ooing and awing about the journey through the stars, gasping at the speed she could travel through space to stand in front of a planet, reading all the information. She laughed and was having way too much fun – until she started looking in all directions and looked down. “Where are my legs! I don’t have any legs!” She backed away and lost her balance. I grabbed her and caught her nightie, yanking her over against me so she wouldn’t fall back and hit the tub, holding onto her with everything I had. I was so engaged and enthralled with her immersive joy in VR, the sudden mix of terror that I almost killed my mother with VR is something we still laugh about.
Lorelle VanFossen

Come join the fun and share your favorite experience in VR. And we look forward to seeing you at our next Educators in VR meetup tomorrow.

Educators in VR: News You Can Use for 29 March 2019

Our active Educators in VR Discord group shares news and information you can use about virtual reality in education at all levels, including corporate training and education. Here are a few of the treasures shared this week.

Brags on Our Members

VR Stats and Facts

Continue reading

Next Meetup is March 21 with Joe Millward from TAFE NSW

TAFE logo and building sign in Sydney.The next meeting of Educators in VR in AltspaceVR is March 21, 2019. Joe Millward from TAFE NSW will be joining us to talk about how to scale up provision of VR in education.

TAFE NSW is Australia’s leading provider for more than 1200 education and training courses with over 500,000 students attending on campus, online, through distance learning, or in the workplace. Established as an independent statutory body under the TAFE Commission Act 1990, the original NAFE NSW started over 130 years ago in New South Wales as a vocational project, helping to educate workers during the Depression and following the World Wars. Today, they provide educational and counseling to multicultural, aboriginal, and migrant populations across Australia. Their information and communications technology courses are expected to grow by 75% over the next ten years to serve the digital economy. They even have a Wikipedia page with details about the courses and areas and topics they cover.

Come join us March 21, 2019, in AltspaceVR for an informative discussion on how they meet the growing need for virtual reality in education.

We meet in AltspaceVR, a free virtual reality social app and community. You may RSVP on our events page and AltspaceVR will send you a reminder an hour before the event. Alan has also built several worlds in AltspaceVR that attract a wide range of visitors, developing innovative virtual entertainment and meeting spaces.

You may attend as a guest or member using the free AltspaceVR mobile app or 2D version. AltspaceVR is found in the Google Store for DayDream, Samsung Gear, in the Steam Store for HTC Vive, Windows Mixed Reality, and the Oculus Store for Rift, Go, and Quest users. If you do not have a VR device, you may also install the mobile version for use on your Android phone or tablet, or the desktop computer version for 2D access. A headset and microphone (quality earbuds acceptable) is required to participate. Otherwise please stay muted during the event as the background noise and echoes can be disruptive. For more information on accessing and installing AltspaceVR, check out their download web page.