Over a year since I posted..

A lot has happened, then again, a lot hasn’t happened.

I actually had 2 posts planned when I last posted. they were mostly drafted up.  One was on Pokemon Go (which I started off way too hard and then lost interest in) and a VR vs AR post.

Pokemon Go

I had a love/hate relationship with this game. As soon as it was announced (ie, within an hour), it was installed and I was playing it.  That night we drove around the town and played more until the servers started playing up due to load.

All the ‘Pokestops’ were at the same locations as a lot of the early Ingress portals, so I knew them well.

The next day, I was walking the street playing, then I stopped for a while and just walked. Every second person was looking down at their screen with the application open.

Walking at lunch around the Opera House, it was more like 9 out of every 10 people were playing it.

Then there were the news articles:

Around this time, my parents were in Perth.  They visited Kings Park and were annoyed that all these people were out playing a game, ignoring their surroundings, and subsequently blocking my parents view.

Then a week or so later, there were reports of a park where there were a number of Pokestops clustered. All through the night people were gathered around a kids playground, basically blocking access to kids using the facilities and then leaving it like a pigsty.

I had tweeted at a writer who was a advocate for the game about it, hoping it would prompt her to write about the negative side as well to increase peoples awareness, but the response was less than I expected: “this is a downside of any crowd gathering anywhere for any reason. People just need to be better”.  I agree, but ‘with great power comes great responsibility’, I had hoped that a ‘look after your environment’ post might have been appropriate.

In saying that, the next week, I was playing for my son and my wife was playing. We actually did go for a walk around Bicentennial Park.  Walking amongst the mangroves was pleasant, but also made me aware of, even there, how people are spoiling the environments by littering.

I personally only lasted about a week playing it.  I hit games pretty hard and sometimes have problems knowing when to stop (thank you Rocket League).

VR vs AR

When I was writing the latter post, I was in a situation where I had not tried VR before, not had I tried AR. I actually booked myself in to the Microsoft Store in Sydney to try out VR the day after I started the post.  I was one of the first people to try out the Trials on Tatooine experience which was released a day or two earlier.  The highlight of that experience was (spoiler alert) when R2D2 rolled out of the Millennium Falcon.  I remember getting down low on the ground to get a closer look at him.  People outside could have seen what I was looking at thanks to a tv on the wall.. and would have been able to see the massive smile on my face.

Using VR, the only issue I had was whether or not to wear my glasses under them. Being a year ago, I can’t remember, but I think I did.

I’m yet to experience AR in the ‘Hololense’ sense. The closest I got was inquiring about a weekend preview of the device, however was told (by the same store I tested the VR out in) that it was more aimed at business people who want to use the device. So I’m yet to try them out.

Mixed Reality was announced more recently, and last week I did get the opportunity to try it out.  The Microsoft Store no longer preview the Vive.  I chose to try the Dell over the Acer, purely as there was a nose piece in it which I didn’t think would sit well with my glasses. As I had power-walked there, the lenses started to fog up.  That did clear up overtime and aside from a couple of teething issues (got a BSoD and then the glasses didn’t recognise the area.. a simple ‘step to the right’ fixed that), the experience was pretty cool.  The images were crisp and the experiences I tried were impressive.  I’m looking forward to the next couple of weeks to hear how the SteamVR support plays out.

Other Stuff

Well, I took WAY too long animating a video for a song I released under my ‘Project’.. I thought it turned out pretty good.  The initial idea started just after my last blog post and I finished it up about a year later, with a majority of the work happening over the last month.

The family has acquired a number of tools over the last year as well, which will lead to some wood projects. I have LOTS of ideas and little time.  But more on those later.

Next project, I’m going to write a Sudoku solver.

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