On the next WTF Tech podcast episode (to be published this week), Darren, Jesse and I spent a fair amount of time discussing Virtual Reality and our personal experiences with using the new technologies.
What if you could talk to your environment in VR? With this tech demo showcasing IBM Watson speech services and the Watson Unity SDK, you can. Create, modify and destroy objects in an immersive sandbox world using your voice.
IBM has more details on the application and the background to its development in their Mobile Innovation Lab, and the entire article is worth a read if you’re interested in how IBM believes VR can be used in future applications:
Because the world is immersive and users are fully absorbed in the experience, even slightly unintuitive behaviors can be extremely jarring in unpredictable ways. Therefore, it’s important to test often with real users as you are building your app.
People are affected by VR very differently. Some have used VR before and immediately understand the controls, others might not even know to look around the environment, and many could be easily affected by motion sickness. It is important to test with people that have varying degrees of familiarity with VR systems because they will all react differently.
Our process for user testing involved creating different hypotheses, then implementing simple builds of the app that demonstrated each hypothesis. Creating objects using voice was one of the most difficult things to get right; we had to ensure that every user would be able to successfully create objects with their voice and that objects would materialize in the world where our users expected them to appear. We created 3 different interaction models and tested each one, which is how we arrived on the laser-pointer system present in the current version of the game.
The current ‘tech demo’ available on VivePort is somewhat limited in functionality terms, but still allows for the possibilities of voice control within VR to be experienced first-hand.
This video shows the app in use:
Personally, the demo left me feeling a little cold… It would seem to need more than just the ability to create pre-canned named objects in the 3D space to be even approaching usefulness. What about naming the size, colour and character of the objects? What about changing or animating objects that already exist etc.? However, there’s clearly value in researching, modelling and testing these technologies out, and I applaud IBM’s effort to get Watson-capabilities into the hands of Vive users at this early stage.
Please do add a comment if you’ve tried out the Speech Sandbox, and let us know what you think of the capabilities it offers…
IBM Connections 6 is coming soon… So what is the killer enhancement?
Wed, Mar 15th 2017 10:20a Stuart McIntyre Earlier this week IBM published a press release previewing the headline features of the upcoming new on-premises release of Connections:
IBM today announced it is bringing new capabilities to enterprise social networks for a simpler collaboration across the workforce and employee onboarding experience. The latest version of IBM Connections also integrates with IBM Cloud Object Storage, providing companies an ability to scale their storage needs with their employee’s usage while improving st
IBM extends Sametime support to 2021. What next for IBM in the UC space?
Tue, Mar 14th 2017 11:59a Stuart McIntyre IBM Sametime is a robust communications offering designed to accelerate your social business by driving faster decisions, with more complete information powered by the business experts in your organization. The suite of tools in Sametime helps unlock the value in your underutilized communications systems by integrating them into a more intuitive system. Sametime tools and services can be accessed from within the applications and business processes that you use every day.
Support for Sametime V9.
Mon, Mar 6th 2017 10:58a Stuart McIntyre This concept was mentioned in a WSJ article on the nature of Internet Trolls:
A site published by the Norwegian public broadcaster NRK just rolled out a system that gives readers a brief multiple-choice quiz about the contents of an article—proving they really read it—before allowing them to comment.
Reading more on the idea, I really think that NRK are onto something:
The goal is to ensure that the commenters have actually read the story before they discuss it.
“We thought we should do
Conspiracy theories, courtesy of Google Home
Mon, Mar 6th 2017 10:36a Stuart McIntyre https://twitter.com/ruskin147/status/838445095410106368/video/1
This kind of (accidental?) misinformation is going to be become an ever increasing issue as intelligent assistants become more deeply embedded into our lives. Worrying…
Engage 2017 abstract submission closes today
Tue, Feb 28th 2017 3:51p Stuart McIntyre Engage 2017 is about 2 months away.
Monday-Tuesday, 8 – 9 May, 2017, at the Elisabeth Center Antwerp, Belgium. A brand new conference center, in an historic frame. In the city center, next to the 19th century Zoo and the stunning Antwerp Central train station.
Our target is to have more attendees than the 425 attendees we had last time.
Close to 80 sessions in 5 tracks: Business & Strategy, Development, Administration & Deployment, Emerging Technologies
and for the first time: B
Ghost Browser – the Productivity Browser for Tech Pros
Thu, Feb 2nd 2017 8:50a Stuart McIntyre You may already be aware of Ghost Browser, my apologies if so. However, I’ve lost count of the number of advanced users that I’ve met in the past month or so that haven’t seen it yet, but who would benefit significantly from its features:
Put simply, Ghost Browser allows you to have multiple authenticated sessions open to the same site simultaneously, with each session having its own cookie jar, isolated from other sessions. This allows users such as web developers, testers,
Slack takes aim at the corporate sector with Enterprise Grid, names IBM as one of the launch customers
Wed, Feb 1st 2017 2:58p Stuart McIntyre TechCrunch yesterday reported on Slack’s plans to unveil an enterprise version of it’s service:
Slack, the business app that lets teams of users communicate, share files from other services, and work on them with each other, has taken off like wildfire since launching three years ago, with 5 million daily users, 1.5 million of them paying today. Now, Slack is embarking on the next step in its ambition to be the go-to platform for all workplace collaboration, no matter how big
What not to miss at IBM Connect 2017: Connections Pink
Wed, Feb 1st 2017 11:22a Stuart McIntyre IBM Connect 2017 takes place later this month in San Francisco, and the last-minute push to increase attendance is already underway. I’m a big fan of the new venue, and the shift from Florida to California, and so really hope that the event is a huge success.
One of the interesting aspects of the registration push has been the unveiling of some information that previously being kept relatively quiet – if not under NDA, certainly out of the limelight:
IBM Connections provides the p
Dropbox Paper: Grow bigger, brighter ideas
Mon, Jan 30th 2017 8:08p Stuart McIntyre Dropbox announced that they are rolling their Paper collaborative content creation platform out on a global basis today:
More than a doc, Dropbox Paper is a flexible workspace that brings people and ideas together.
Paper supports all phases of the creative process – from start to finish:
A connected space to create and ideate together
Teams find flow together in Paper, where everyone can contribute to growing better ideas in a beautiful, flexible workspace.
Review and revise work in a
T’was ten years ago… (Lotus Connections & Quickr)
Fri, Jan 27th 2017 3:11p Stuart McIntyre Unfortunately I’ve just missed the actual anniversary, but I thought it worth celebrating that this week marks a decade since the announcement (on 22nd January 2007) of two products that have had an immense impact on my working life, Lotus IBM Connections and Lotus Quickr.
I was relatively late to the Lotusphere party, attending my first US-based event in 2004 after a couple of the European events. Therefore I never experienced the sell-out 10,000 attendee events pre 9/11