Techno Dabbler

Trying out new technology.

Tuesday

12

August 2014

Oculus Rift DK2 Quick Impression

by Alexandre Denault, on Videogames, PC, Oculus Rift, VR

Oculus Rift DK2 Quick Impression

When it comes to 3D VR technologies, I am negatively biased. Products like the Virtual Boy and the Nintendo 3DS offered a disapointing 3D experience, and the only added entertainment I get from a 3D movie in theater is a pounding headache. The first time I placed a Oculus Rift Developement Kit on my head, I fully expected to be disapointed. Instead, I was blown away by the Tuscano demo. For the first time, I was experiencing a virtual world that was not disorienting. In essence, my reaction was that they (Oculus Rift) finally got it (VR) right.

When the second development kit was announced, I immediatly pre-ordered. Like Mark Zuckerberg, I firmly believe in the potential of VR as a new platform. I received my development kit yesterday and got to try it out a bit.

As Oculus has stated time and time again: the device is not ready for public consumption. The device requires quite a bit of calibration, most of which I'm still trying to understand. The increase in resolution provides a significantly improved experience, but the head tracking is jittery. That should fix itself once I properly calibrate the unit. As for software support, I gave up trying on MacOs early on. However, installation on Windows 7 was very straighforward.

Development-wise, I have two options : Unreal or Unity. Given my lack of C++ skills, Unity would be the natural choice. However, the Pro version, which is required for Oculus Support, is a bit expensive at 75$/month. I'll try it for a month or two, as I want to better understand the device.

Alexandre Denault
Alexandre Denault

Veteran software developer and holds a PhD in Computer Science. Avid computer enthusiast (geek) who has been dabbling with technology ever since his Dad brought home an 8086 computer.

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