NEODiVRjr - The Magic of VR for Kids Only!
NEODiVRjr - The Magic of VR for Kids Only!
NEODiVRjr is a Virtual Reality viewer made specifically for kids using the world's leading smart device for kids, the Apple iPod Touch.
NEODiVRjr is a Virtual Reality viewer made specifically for kids using the world's leading smart device for kids, the Apple iPod Touch. Read more
About this project
This an actual YouTube 360 in 3D that optimally should be seen with Google Cardboard on an Android device. You can also get a sense of the depth in the scene by viewing this in the Google Chrome browser in anaglyph (Red/Cyan) glasses mode.
VR can help you?
The inspiration for NEODiVRjr came about after visiting the Shriners Children's hospital in Sacramento, California to do a presentation for one of my other endeavors, a low cost 3D scanner system for scanning the faces, torsos and appendages of severely burned children that can be used to provide accurate measurements for creating fitted pressure garments crucial to the healing process. Since the child is not touched, this dramatically reduces the pain and discomfort they normally endure.
However, I also had an opportunity to show off another project I had been working on called NEODiVR, which is a VR system that allows you to use the Occipital Structure 3D sensor to map out your surroundings depth information in real-time and feed that back into a VR environment, allowing you to literally walk, sit, crawl and even lie prone in the VR world. What makes this different than the HTC Vive, is the how easily it can be used in this manner. Literally with one of the NEODiVR systems I have developed, like the HOMiDO collaboration below or my
other KickStarter project the NEODiVR "Loupe." (The grownup version of NEODiVRjr with huge 41 mm high quality optical glass lenses for 5.5" phones launching January 4, 2016) You attach the sensor, load a eAVR enabled app and start moving around in the VR world.
Due to this new process, I was able to present how VR could be used as tool for distraction and even modifying body skin temperature based on research done at the University of Washington to help burn victims to cope with pain.
Needless to say the demonstration left a great deal of buzz in the air, including the reaction of a renowned physical therapy researcher from UC Davis who saw the potential of using NEODiVR with eAVR for physical therapy by creating VR worlds to give kids incentive to move around and actually engage in activities necessary for recovery. Not more than a week had past when I received an email that they were able to use the test VR viewer I left them to help a severely burned child who had been difficult to work with. A week later I had my first prototype specifically for children and NEODiVRjr was born.
NEODiVRjr BASIC & NEODiVRjr xTREME
NEODiVRjr is made specifically for children taking in consideration the cost, size and view-ability, as well as the control of the VR content, which is why I decided to make this just for the the Apple iPod Touch 6G, Apple's latest in the line of iPod devices, and in my opinion, the most underrated device they make. It was quietly introduced in August of 2015 with little fanfare, but for me it meant finally a device with the internals to turn it into a VR platform. With the same processor as the iPhone 6 of 2014, a full 64 bit architecture and able run every app that the iPhone 6 can, I found my VR platform for kids. It also didn't hurt that Apple takes family seriously and controls the content allowed in its Eco-system, as well as offering new family control features ensuring your child only sees the content you install for them.
NEODiVRjr is a very lightweight shell that snaps over the iPod Touch, holding it securely in place with a strategically placed metallic fabric and aluminum disc that allows for Google Cardboard "Trigger" compatibility, as well as Google Cardboard certification to allow the child to use any other Google Cardboard content, including the content made for the Mattel View-MasterTM.
The NEODiVRjr comes in two versions: The NEODiVRjr BASIC single plastic shell a green/yellow color scheme to keep the cost down and ease-of-use and the more sophisticated NEODiVRjr xTREME in the yellow/black color scheme that adds a hinged lens box so you can easily change apps by lifting and accessing the screen and an additional mounting point to connect the 3-point adjustable mounting bracket to be used with any GoPro compatible head gear, giving you a head-mounted look and freedom like that experienced with an elite forces night-vision system.
Both come with a lightweight detachable handle for "opera glass" like experience. And at the time of release, the option to buy the "Magic Amber" A Bluetooth 6-axis controller that is worn on the wrist or finger to allow for hand gestures and movement in the VR environment. Pricing is still being determined, but a special offer is being made for first run batch to be made available in April, 2016.
eAVR (environmental Awareness Virtual Reality)
On January 2, 2015 Occipital gave me a sneak peak at what I consider be a groundbreaking achievement in real-time spatial processing and that is using their Structure sensor to allow you to move around in the real world and covert this into information to move in the VR world as well. Not only could you move in space along a plane, but you could also sit, crouch and even lie down if you wanted to. This immediately sparked me in taking my NEODiMOUNT case system and their sensor and creating a headset specifically for it and NEODIVR was born. In June 2015, we introduced eAVR or the technical term from Occipital "Unbounded Tracking." NEODiVRjr, can also be used with the sensor for eAVR use by the special NEODiMOUNT v2 bracket that allows the sensor to be attached to the top of NEODiVRjr as well as connecting to the head strap bracket to allow for hands free operation. In early 2016, I will offer the apps mentioned below as eAVR enabled as well.
Dr. Clint Slaughter tries out NEODiVRjr xTREME for himself and is completely immersed!
Can you catch a virtual snowflake or see things in virtual clouds?
Lenses: Google Cardboard certified poly-carbonate, 25 mm diameter, 40 mm Focal Length, convex/plano design.
Case: High impact polystyrene plastic, in a two-tone color scheme.
Capacitance Trigger: Aluminum disc attached to a metallic fabric.
Screen & Processor: Apple iPod Touch 6G 16 GB - 128 GB with A8 processor and 4.7" IPD LCD screen. (Not included)
Interocular Pupil Distance (IPD): 53 mm (2.09")
Weight (with iPod and handle): 155 g (5.5 oz)
Length: 130 mm (5.11")Width: 67.86 mm (2.67")Height: 52.55 mm (2.07")
Google Cardboard Registered:
Mike compares the NEODiVRjr to the Mattel View-Master and Google Cardboard, and shows why "IPD" is important as well as its versatility and the ease of converting to 'eAVR'.
Mike assembles the first NEODiVR xTREME production Shapeways version and talks about the purpose of each component.
(Video to be added 12/4)
Virtual Reality Apps
Finally, it is my goal to also have VR apps available in the iTunes App store for education and fun at the time of delivery or before. Here are just a few of the titles to be released both as Google Cardboard compatible, as well as "eAVR" (environmental Awareness Virtual Reality) powered using the Occipital Structure 3D sensor for full body movement.
OR Surgery: A fully populated surgery room that you can interact in and listen to the Surgical Technologist, Anesthesiologist and Surgeon talk to you about their roles and the equipment in the room.
MRI: In your lifetime, if not already, you will probably need an MRI. One of the questions asked is. Are you claustrophobic? Unless you know you are already, how do know how it will affect you to be enclosed in a plastic tube? As I was told by an MRI technologist, many who have had to have MRI scans didn't realize they were until they slid into the tube, remaining deathly still and hearing the clacking, banging and thumping of the magnetic field collapsing. Now you (or a loved one) will be able to find out before you set foot into a medical imaging clinic.
Inside Van Gough: Here is an opportunity to sit peacefully inside of one of Van Gough's most famous painting, meticulously captured by French 3D artist Ruslan Sokolovskyand listen to the sound of the birds outside the open window. You will swear you feel the slight breeze on your cheeks.
Graveyard: Is a "Halloween" based VR game where your goal is to find five "special" pumpkins and bring each one back to your cart parked outside the main cemetery gate before Gary the ghoul & pals catch up to you and make other plans for you. Even though you are running for your life, don't forget to take in the full "Super" moon and the rocking out ghosts. This should be in the app store by the time you read this.
Alps: In this VR experience you are at the top of a mountain slope ready to push off to ski to the bottom. However unlike other video games, in this one your posture (when eAVR enabled) and stance will determine your turning and speed as you make your descent down the alps.
Fishbowl: My inspiration for this is from the aquarium screen savers first made popular for your desktop computer and then your smart devices. However in this VR version you are actually inside the fish bowl with the fish swimming around you while you look outside to the real world via the RGB camera in your smart device being distorted by the virtual glass one would see through if they were indeed in a giant fish bowl. Who knows, maybe this will start a viral campaign "Save the gold fish from captivity."
Art House: Who has not been to an art show, art gallery, or art museum, but find that only one or two of the art pieces are famous or memorable? What if you could visit a museum where all the art is famous? Now you can and hey -- even get close enough to touch it without the host or guard telling you to back away. And as an added feature, snap away with your VR camera with no reprisals.
Cave: Everyone has heard or seen images of of the drawings in the cave of Chauvet, France, In fact a documentary was created in "3D" called the "Cave of Forgotten Dreams" by Werner Herzog. The sad thing is, the cave has been off limits to the public. My goal and through the help from the custodians of the cave, I will bring the scanned interior to eAVR and allow you to experience what it would be like to walk through the cave yourself with all its sights and sound. However, you will have to find your own cold and damp location to fully immerse yourself in the experience.
This is only small sample of what I have in mind in the next three months and no doubt there will be many more VR/Google Cardboard titles for your kids to enjoy with their new NEODiVRjr.
Clint Slaughter, MD, Santa Maker and his Maker elves
The main goal once this is funded is to take the $5 contributions and match it with our own funds to make at least 100 of these before December 22, 2015 so that they can be shipped via USPS to hospitals in the US, and after the holidays to the rest of the world. The cost of such rapid production is relying on Shapeways to produce the plastic shell & handle and then assembling them by hand. Thanks to Dr. Clint Slaughter, ER physician and CEO of the San Luis Obispo MakerSpace, his maker elves and me, we will assemble, paint the trimmng, and package each of these along with a personal note from the assembler the December weekend of the 19 - 20th -- less than month away.
A fireside chat with the designer of NEODiVRjr.
Risks and challenges
Being someone who have backed several Kickstarters over the past three years I have had my share of "winners" and "losers" and have reported and interviewed a number of the others who have had extremely successful Kickstarters. With this knowledge and my own experience of bringing independent products to the market, I realize the potential for miscalculation in the cost of development, manufacturing and packaging can lead to delays and even failure. It has been my goal from day one, to make sure the product sourcing has been done and the process of manufacturing and assembly is simplified to reduce delays and ensure that none of the components are customized or rare enough to create problems in the manufacturing process.
However, as much planning and redundancy in sourcing I have added, I cannot account for everything and there could delays. It will be my goal to document and report the status of development, manufacturing , component shipping, their arrival and the assembly process and final shipping dates. I will ensure that any updates to the project are done in a timely manner and no hidden "extras." pushed on you during the production and shipping phase. My guarantee is the pledge you make now, is the price you will pay for the final device.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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