About this project
Thanks to you we made it!
Stretch Goal 1: $150K: PASSED!
Accelerometer, Gyro and Compass (9 Degrees of Freedom Sensor) will be on board every headset!
NEWS: First App announced! GameDraw 3D sculpting: ported to meta in 2 Days!!
NEWS: Steve Mann, father of Wearable Computing joins meta as Chief Scientist
The Age Of The Flat Device Is Over
Video from the Lab: Depth Map & Occlusion Tests
meta 1 Developer Kit
We were inspired by the interfaces in films like Iron Man, Avatar and Minority Report and wanted to make them a reality. The meta 1 Developer Kit has the power to finally deliver a natural interface between the virtual world and reality.
We are integrating customized hardware components and building a robust SDK (software development kit). meta 1 is the most advanced and affordable interface for augmented reality, we want every developer to have the opportunity to create the apps of the future.
Our partnerships, investment and timing have allowed us to deliver this hardware/software kit to developers for $750 and comes ready for you to get hacking right away.
Depth and Gestures
Our software stack is very open. Our depth camera interface exposes all depth data at the low level and at the higher levels gives you access to object meshes, fingers/hands and gestures.
Spun out of Columbia University, our team of professors and graduate students is building the most advanced surface tracking algorithms in the world. These algorithms allow you to anchor virtual content to the real world, without use of fiducial markers.
After two years in the lab working on software and hardware, we reached the stage of a live prototype. Just two months later we’d built the first 3D occlusion algorithms to mesh the real and virtual world together in real time. We now have a team of engineers ready to complete surface detection and finish our SDK, and our hardware partners are waiting to produce and integrate the components.
meta is a Y Combinator startup. Investment and expert guidance will ensure meta can build a high quality SDK while simultaneously allowing us to deliver hardware at the cost of building it. meta is also proud to be partnered with Epson who manufacture the optics for our glasses.
“We see endless applications for meta’s product using Epson’s see-through wearable technology.”--Anna Jen, Director of New Business, Epson America
“In Avatar we merged the virtual world and the real world in the viewfinder. We'd love meta to build a great on-set tool for a director who could wear the glasses and use his hands to move a rock or even a leaf to get a better look at the scene.” --James Knight, CEO of Knight Vision at Universal Studios and Head of Performance capture on Avatar.
“We’ve always wanted to use augmented reality in engineering and architecture… meta will help us push the boundaries of what is possible” --Anthony Cortez, Senior Designer, Arup Engineering
“meta is the hardware we've been waiting for.”- Dima Kislovskiy, Founder, Augary Navigation
"I love the idea of having a digital version of your clothes and being able to try before you buy... I'm so excited to have our infinite closet of free fashion available on meta."- Nikki Durkin, Founder of 99 Dresses Online Fashion Company.
meta is the brainchild of Meron Gribetz, a Columbia University computer and neuro science major with a passion for augmented reality and a vision to change the world of computing. He is supported by a driven, talented and passionate team of engineers and professionals from around the globe, as well as some of the world’s leading thinkers and doers in the realm of AR.
Meron Gribetz - Founder & CEO
Ben Sand - Co-Pilot & Evangelist
“There's really nothing else out there that compares with meta. No one else is bringing together the hardware and software technology that they are. The capabilities are unique and the team is incredibly talented and driven.” --Professor Steven Feiner, Professor of computer science and augmented reality researcher, Columbia University.
Professor Austin Reiter - Lead Engineer
“meta is going to change the way people look at personal computers.” --Austin Reiter, Adjunct Professor of Computer Science, Columbia University.
It's Not Just A Pop Up In The Corner Of Your Eye
meta 1's unique capabilities and focus on functionality place it firmly as a leader in the field of augmented reality technology. meta 1 is not just a pop up in the corner of your eye allowing limited access to computing applications nor is it a shield that traps you in a world of virtual reality.
meta’s vision is to be a computer replacement, not just an accessory to a phone or a gaming device. We truly believe the end of the flat device is sooner than you think. Developers that jump on board in this initial phase will help us shape the future of the consumer edition, which will be a completely standalone device for all day wear and functionality proposed for less than a year away.
The Tech Specs
Field of view: 23 degrees for each eye, in the centre of the field of vision. Appears five metres away from the viewer before stereoscopic effects are applied which allows perceived distance to vary.
Projection: two individual screens, one for each eye, appear in front of the user, so as to render in stereo.
Resolution: 960x540 for each eye
Weight: 0.3 kilograms
Supported Platforms: Currently Windows 32bit/64bit. Support for other platforms is in development.
Develop Using: Write code in Unity3D on a Windows PC. Other platforms will follow.
SDK provides: Gestures and Finger tracking, general depth data that works with any objects in range of the depth camera, RGB data and surface tracking (access planes and meshes of surfaces in the real world, so you can anchor virtual objects to them, or augment them in other ways.)
Risks and challenges
The most likely obstacle facing us is one similar projects have faced--managing production and shipping deadlines. Fortunately, we are working with established and experienced partners to manufacture meta 1. We have worked closely with our partners and planned out a manufacturing forecast that has led us to the tentative shipping date of September 2013.
Below are the primary components of our manufacturing roadmap:
1. Licensing agreements with our glasses (Epson) and depth camera (we cannot disclose the name at the time) manufacturers- secured for shipment to us by the end of June
2. Integration and 3D printing
- 3D printing will be done in a warehouse in Brooklyn
- integration by meta team will take about one month per 100 units
3. Testing and package assembly
- an additional week per 100 units
Additionally, we will be consulting industry experts to advise us as we progress. With the strength of our team, we hope to avoid the setbacks that inexperienced startups usually face. In any case, we will do our utmost to keep our supporters posted on our progress. Thank you!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
The developer kit runs on Windows and requires Unity 3D. We are eager to expand to other platforms.
The developer kit requires a connection to a computer. This allows for rapid development iteration and keeps costs down. The future consumer edition will have a stand alone option.
We will be on deck to support when any problems arise. We are counting on you to build the apps that will power the consumer addition and you can count on a high level of support.
It is augmented reality. The screens of our glasses are see-through, allowing users to see the real world and virtual content at the same time.
Size and weight will halve every 6-12 months. We have smaller components in the lab at present and the meta’s second generation prototype is already weighing in at around 100 grams.
Unity 3D base with additional libraries to handle depth, finger, hand, gesture and surface tracking.
A Windows computer with HDMI out and USB ports
qHD x 2: 960x540 for each eye (two screens total)
The libraries in the SDK are capable of identifying multiple gestures. The depth data, finger data and hand data allow for developers to define more gestures themselves
Yes, you can move virtual objects using your bare hands (no gloves required). Additionally, you can deform the 3D meshes, allowing you to treat all objects as if they're made from virtual clay.
Yes, all augmented reality elements are not just one way displays. Developers can enable gesture and object interactions for every interface element - pick up and rotate any interface element with your hands, or squash them with your shoe -- developers have complete freedom to have the real world interact with the virtual world. That is what we mean when we say "reality apps".
The SDK will ship with the developer kit and receive continuous updates.
The exact shipping date will be determined by developer feedback. We are are looking at producing a consumer version within the next year.
Yes, however there will be an additional shipping cost.
Smaller, lighter, more fashionable, resembling a pair of popular sunglasses frames. Available in a stand alone option (untethered, fully battery powered).
The meta glasses project an image through prisms that give the illusion the image is 5m away. If you normally need sight aids to see objects clearly that far away, then you'll need those sight aids when using meta. Most eye glasses are compatible with the meta glasses frame (ie. you can probably wear your eye glasses and meta glasses at the same time)
We’d love to hear from you. Please message us on Kickstarter or fill in the contact for on www.meta-view.com
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