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Thursday, February 08, 2024

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Trilo Byte

Point of note.. Rec Room's iPad app has been running on Vision Pro from the start.

Wagner James Au

Good point, thanks, I amended that line!

Brian Aviator

The "bokeh effect" I referred to seems to be due to the foveated rendering (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foveated_imaging#:~:text=Foveated%20rendering%20is%20an%20upcoming,zone%20gazed%20by%20the%20fovea) in the Apple Vision Pro. The screenshot is an accurate representation of what the device is rendering but this is not noticeable when using the device because the eye/brain are focused on where I am gazing within the rendered scene.

Gwyneth Llewelyn

I knew that someone was due to do this, sooner or later :-)

But I didn't expect it to be that soon!

The desktop version of the SL Viewer already has had 360º snapshots for quite a while. I wonder if the mobile version will have it, too. If so, well, I can expect that, one day, you won't be merely seeing a large (huge?) rectangular screen floating in front of you. Instead, you'll be in mouselook — inside your avatar, inside the 360º environment generated by Second Life. That's not really that far-fetched, and I have no doubt that it should be within the abilities of the LL developers working on the mobile app.

Now, how cool would that be? :)

Granted, one cannot expect the same level of quality as a specially-developed VR environment for the Apple Vision Pro. SL, after all, lags — and that will be very confusing, or probably even worse than that: inducing motion sickness, for instance. SL doesn't behave like the real world when you abruptly turn your head; all those textures coming in sight will need to be downloaded first. This is not going to change. Also, there is a question of resolution: will the CPUs of the Vision Pro be able to render a full 360º environment at an acceptable FPS to be 'usable'? I have certainly seen videos of people (some of them my students, streaming live) who had at least 4K screens, rendering SL at sub-Ultra quality at 45 FPS. Will that be enough? Will the Apple Vision Pro manage that as well as a top-of-the-line beefed-up PC, carefully built from scratch by a professional eSports athlete? (BTW, that's what my students were.)

Maybe. The whole point is that it's not that far-fetched as it seems.

And think about puppetry. No need to deal with the whole complexity of the LEAP feature built-in the SL desktop viewer, requiring building an external plugin which connects to a webcam and tries to recognise your arm motions and facial expressions, and impress them on your avatar. Apple has done all of that for the Vision Pro, and offer it as part of their SDK. And LL has done the necessary hooks. They just need to connect the two bits.

It's easier said than done, of course, but I'd venture a guess that SL will not be far behind all others — with possibly a difference: it's hardly a surprise that the Big Players are boycotting Apple's Vision Pro. I can imagine Epic saying "no" to Fortnite as a VR game inside the Vision Pro (because they also have their own hardware to sell), and possibly Roblox will do the same, as will Microsoft's Minecraft. Meta/Facebook, obviously, will steer clear of the combination of Apple Vision Pro + Second Life, since that's precisely what they wish to sell and have been intensely developing for almost a decade now, with little to show (except, well, heavilly post-processed video for their ads...).

LL with SL-on-Vision-Pro will have an edge, at least for short a while, but that might give SL a small advantage in this market, before the competition swallows their pride and catches up...

And why should they? Well, SL works due to a specific niche of users. They tend not only to be older (on average), but, more importantly, they have more expendable cash, which they're happy to put into acquiring content in SL — the metaverse which makes considerably more money per capita, even if its scale is several orders of magnitude smaller than the competition...

Here's an example: Roblox has an estimated 600-million-strong base of monthly active users. Second Life has one thousandth of that user base; nevertheless, it sells more (user-generated) content per capita than Roblox — which, BTW, has a tiny marketplace (compared to LL's own — or even to the Kitely Marketplace!

And I'm not even considering that the amount of user-generated content for Roblox is just a tiny fraction of what you can expect to see for sale on SL — and that content is way more expensive!

Now consider those that are wealthy enough to afford to buy a Vision Pro are actually active residents of SL as well. They can certainly afford the handful

But I completely digress. I'm excited that the initial response

Gwyneth Llewelyn

to the Apple Vision Pro has been so positive, in spite of all the shortcomings it still has!

FlipperPA

How cool! But it isn’t a real platform until someone gets Skyrim running in there. :) It can’t be far off with SteamVR already hacked in!

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