Vit Jedlicka is a man with a big dream. Claiming undisputed piece of land on Croatian/Serbian border, he wants to create new country. Country for all libertarians and free-minded people from around the world. With almost zero government regulations and voluntary tax system.
Sounds like an utopia to you? Liberland already has thousands of fans, followers and contributors around the world.
We love the idea of Liberland. It’s bold and promotes one of the most important values – freedom. Since it will take some time to build Liberland, we will create a virtual version of it.
Vit spent couple of hours playing in our VR space (tossing some balls around is fun even for Mr. President). We agreed on basic vision of Virtual Liberland and now with the help of people from Liberland all around the world, we are putting together first draft of VR presentation.
Data are hot goods – everyone wants more of them. We want to visualise and analyse them, the more the better. And why do we need it? To make better decisions.
Our data are always only as good as our ability to make better decision thanks to them. And we believe the visualisation is the key to that.
Right now we are limited to process the data in spreadsheets, more or less complicated dashboards or using mostly 2D charts and lines. Or we can give it to a team of analysts or machine learning algorithm to crunch it for us. But there may be another way.
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What if we could see data and interact with them in new way? Imagine that instead of messing around with spreadsheets, you have all the data all around you. Imagine you can move them around, connect them, make them alive in real time using just your hands… now it is possible, thanks to VR.
We in octopus engine are going to make that happen. It’s only the beginning. Frankly, we are not sure yet what the best approach is. But we are determined to figure it out. We are determined to try a lot of crazy stuff, find all the dead ends and have fun along the way.
Our vision is to create data processing tool in VR. It will be intuitive to use for analysts, managers, business owners, engineers and other professionals. It will help you make faster and better decisions and get deeper understanding of data.
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Today we are just bragging about our Simple Bitcoin Terminal which is a payment machine allowing stores and other brick and mortar businesses to receive payments in Bitcoins (and other cryptocurrencies) quickly and easily.
Honza engineered a prototype one year ago, and now he is giving it more polish. Last weekend we presented it to crypto-fans during yearly crypto flea market in Paralelni polis – Prague.
Now, we want to advance new technologies. So we do not aim to be bogged down by manufacturing and selling this little machine commercially.
However, if you are an entrepreneur, manufacturer or electronics seller and would like to introduce Simple Bitcoin Terminal to market, feel free to contact us.
Who is in the direst need to escape boundaries of physical reality?
Is it gamer who wants better gaming experience? Or professional who demands better visualisation for his project? Film maker, making more immersive experience?
We come up with a different answer. Those who need to escape our reality the most are the ones who are the most challenged by it – disabled people or too old and weak to go out and enjoy life to the fullest.
There is a room for many more VR applications, helping those in need. There are experiments, suggesting that VR simulations help with pain relief, psychotherapy , rehab exercises or even a next generation of social connection.
That’s why we are creating New Reality platform with these people in mind. It will empower them, allow them to experience and even control (via IoT). In our New Reality there will be no barriers…
By helping others, you will learn how to help yourselves. -Aung San Suu Kyi
You probably know what we are creating, but you may wonder what octopus engine actually is.
OE is not a company (not yet) and it is not a pure hobby either. Right now we describe OE as community. Community of passionate people from various backgrounds, who want to create awesome things with new technology.
That’s why we connect with others in VR meetups and hackathons, discussing new tech, sharing ideas, creating together. Our first meetup happened in PaperHub Coworking space visited by IT geeks, cryptocurrency fans and tech cyborgs. By the way, it’s the same place Honza first met Maťo and challenged him to play one match of Go. OE team emerged from that encounter.
At that time, our vision was still hard around the edges and not easy to explain. But we still found guys wanting to get involved with the idea.
Creative graphic designer, who created this scary Sea Devil 3D model, which we put into VR.
Look at those details!
Or young Internet of Things enthusiast who would like to help us with the idea of connecting VR and IoT devices.
There are many really exceptional people we are meeting on our journey. We will mention some of them in our blog so stay tuned.
OE is based in Prague, but we aim to bring together enthusiasts worldwide.
We work hard on our New Reality project. But sometimes it doesn’t hurt to take a break and just have fun…like with this little demonstration of normal Gauss distribution. You may find it useful if you are teaching math or just want to show someone how it works.
You don’t even need one line of code, just put together this simple scene in Unity3D:
Put pegs on the slope floor (ctrl+C) and prepare several compartments.
Prepare path for balls.
Generate ball objects.
Add laws of physics for your balls (ball is in the gravitational field and has weight…).
Send them down one by one. Balls are rolling around and end up in the compartments as they would in the real world.
Watch balls being distributed into well-known Gauss Curve. Balls are currently too slippy and jumpy. For smoother outcome, we need to optimise elasticity and friction.
There are many concepts you can easily simulate in VR, we can’t wait to show you our next idea!
What happens when you let a philosopher to experience your concept of Virtual Reality? Honza invited his friend Jan Fikacek – philosopher and university lector to try VR and play with objects in our workspace.
What does Jan say about VR and our concept?
Hardware finally enables almost photo-realistic VR experience. It is fast enough to keep the sense of stability and solidity of the virtual world.
There is one psychological effect of being in VR – you have kind of a “double perception”. You perceive Virtual Reality but also the Real Reality, although visually hidden from you at the moment. You still feel the room around you, estimate the position of furniture and walls so you don’t bump into it. And after you take off your headset, you almost feel that behind the real room around you there is another room – more real than the one you see. Super-real. And you are afraid to move so you don’t bump into some kind of super-furniture which is located in the super-reality.
Jan, deep in virtual reality
Another interesting observation – there is a contact between VR and Real Reality, in my case it were controllers – you hold the physical controllers and you see them in VR as well, if you clap them together, they clap together in both realities at the same time.
I got an idea to make VR demonstration of my philosophical concept. Even my university class is called Philosophy of Virtual Reality!
Virtual objects with no gravity
Conclusion – VR is much more than games and simulations. It offers new points of view, interesting intellectual stimuli and lets us ask more philosophical questions about our reality and perception.
We will definitely expand on these subject in the future, with Jan’s input.
VR is beautiful demonstration of phenomenology. – Jan Fikacek
Technology is booming and our world is changing. People accomplished so much in recent years – advancing high tech fields VR, AI, IoT… and there are more opportunities ahead. To share faster, connect more deeply, cooperate more effectively…
Right now, our main focus is Virtual Reality. It’s not a new idea per se, but only now we are seeing it’s true progress. And yet main applications of VR are still in entertainment – games, movies, presentations (and yes, porn).
But we believe entertainment is only small fraction of what we can achieve here. There are countless opportunities in medicine, education, construction, psychotherapy, art, commerce… and we want to tackle them.
In this blog, we aim to show you everything – victories, fails, UX and programming challenges, problems with hardware. We will be brutally honest with ourselves and with you – our readers. Nobody said creating New Reality is easy.