Clayton Dyer Vision Paper
May 9, 2016
Rick was tired. He had been in the offices of the Samsung Digital Streaming Network for almost eleven hours. SDSN controlled the digital live streaming of almost 20 sporting events a night. The company, which had begun to grow dramatically since the steady decline of the television industry a few years earlier, live streams numerous sporting events, including games from the National Hockey League, Major League Baseball, and the National Basketball Association. SDSN 360 camera rigs were placed at numerous locations throughout various sports stadiums – in NHL arenas there were four cameras; one on the glass near the red line, one behind each of the goals, and one higher up in the stadium on the red line that offered a more complete view of the rink. A similar setup was used in NBA stadiums; one 360 rig was placed on each baseline while a third was located on the floor right at center court. The setup at MLB stadiums was slightly different; one 360 rig was located directly behind home plate, one was placed a few rows up on the third baseline (right behind third base) as well in the same location on the first baseline, and a fourth and final camera was placed slightly lower than where the broadcast booths used to be around home plate. Those broadcast booths were empty nowadays, however, as all play-by-play and color commentary was done remotely, synced up with the live stream of the game. Funny how times change…
Streaming sports games live directly to user’s Samsung GearVR 4.0 headsets took a lot of bandwidth. Add on the fact that users could switch camera angles on the fly with a swipe of a finger and you have a whole mess of problems for engineers and coders. That wasn’t Rick’s area of expertise, however. Rick worked in the graphics department at SDSN, and he primarily worked on adding lower third graphics and full screens into the broadcasts.
Rick was particularly tired this morning because the Nashville Predators vs. San Jose Sharks game and the St. Louis Blues vs. Dallas Stars game matchup had both gone into overtime (the Predators’ game ended up going into triple overtime). Rick had worked through the night, creating and adding graphics on the fly for hours on end, and had to work on the additional intermission reports and postgame shows that were needed because of the numerous overtimes.
Rick looked at his Samsung Universe S7 phone. The time was 4:42AM. He had gotten in at 6:00PM the previous day.
At that moment his phone buzzed. It was one of his good friends, Winston, texting him.
“You still at work?” he asked.
Rick spoke into Samsung VR headset he was wearing which allowed him to view graphics directly in front of his face… as well as text.
“Yeah… I’m almost done though. Absolutely exhausted,” He said.
“Damn, I can only imagine. Text me when you get home, I want to show you something,” Winston replied.
“Sounds good,” Rick tiredly said before closing his texting application by tapping on the side of his headset and immediately rubbing his eyes.
Just at that moment the executive producer of the show Rick worked for at SDSN, O’Brien, walked up to his cubicle.
“You’re still here?” he asked.
“Yeah, had to wrap up the coverage of the Predators game,” Rick replied.
“Geeze, well you can get out of here, you’ve been here way too long,” O’Brien said.
“Sounds good, I’ll see you tomorrow night,” Rick replied, relieved to finally be headed home.
Rick locked his headset in one of the drawers at his desk (he had another one at home, perks of working for a streaming network owned by Samsung), took the elevator down to the lobby and walked out of the building. He hopped into his Tesla car and started the engine by saying the command, “Tesla, start”.
“Good morning, Rick. Where would you like to go?” his Tesla asked him.
“Home,” Rick curtly replied.
He had always loved driving when he was younger, but Tesla’s self-driving cars made his life exponentially easier. Ever since human-controlled cars had been banned several years earlier there had been nothing but positive changes to driving, such as fewer accidents and less traffic. Rick’s favorite aspect of these self-driving cars, however, was the fact that he could sleep on his drive home.
As soon as the car started to pull out of the parking spot, a holographic screen popped up on the windshield. Using his finger to tap and select commands, Rick flipped through the various channels before he landed on the Tesla version of the SDSN show that he worked for. The late night show was recapping the Predators’ game that Rick had just been working on. He didn’t care that much though – he had just worked all night covering the game – so he closed his eyes and quickly fell asleep.
* * * * *
Rick’s nap didn’t last that long.
“You have arrived at your destination,” his Tesla chirped, startling him.
Rick told his car to power down as he climbed out of the “driver’s seat” and walked up to his apartment complex. He slowly walked through the lobby and took the elevator to his apartment on the 42nd floor.
When he walked in to his apartment he threw his keys onto the kitchen counter, grabbed his Microsoft Hololens from the table, and nestled it down onto his head. Although Rick worked for Samsung he loved the Hololens, and used it frequently while he was home.
Rick opened up his go-to apps – Twitter, texting, email, Snapchat, and whatever sports show was on at the moment – placed the virtual screens on the four walls of his kitchen, and placed a fifth on top of the counter.
Rick walked over to the started making a cup of coffee to wake himself up when he heard his texting app make a sound that notified him that he had received a message. He turned toward the wall that displayed the app and saw that Winston had texted him.
“You home? I can be there in 5,” Winston said.
Rick brought up a keyboard in front of him using his Hololens to text back.
“Just got home, I’m tired as hell but c’mon over,” he replied.
Rick poured himself a cup of coffee and started scrolling through Twitter, using his finger to scroll down the virtual page he had placed on the wall. Most of his feed was filled with people talking about the Predators game the night before. Rick mindlessly scrolled through the seemingly endless list of Tweets – he didn’t need to read more about something he worked on all of the previous night, but he couldn’t stop aimlessly scrolling through Twitter.
His trance was broken by a ding produced by his Hololens. It was his virtual doorbell. A virtual screen popped up in front of his face with a live feed of Winston at his front door. Rick tapped a button next to the video that opened the front door to his apartment complex and Winston walked in.
Rick powered down his Hololens and placed it on the counter as he waited for Winston to arrive.
When Winston opened the door Rick’s attention turned to what was in his friend’s hand – a drone.
“Dude, where did you get that?” he asked him.
“Just bought it yesterday! I had some extra money after I got my last paycheck so I figured why not. I read up on how to fly it and operate it earlier and I was trying a bit by my apartment. Want to give it a shot?” Winston replied.
“Uhh… sure,” Rick replied hesitantly, “but aren’t there tight regulations on flying those?”
“Yeah but I think we should be fine behind your building, we shouldn’t get in trouble there,” Winston confidently responded.
“If you say so man,” Rick said, “but if we get in trouble it’s on you.”
“Fine, fine,” Winston laughed, “let’s go!”
The two headed the grass square behind Rick’s apartment complex. It was one of the few patches of grass left in his neighborhood, but Rick rarely spent time there – his time was spent at work, flopped on his couch with his Hololens on, and sleeping… when he could.
Winston powered on the drone, handed Rick an iPad that displayed a live video feed captured by the GoPro attached to the device, and began to lift the drone off the ground. Winston began to make the drone ascend into the sky, slowly at first but soon quickly. Rick looked down at the screen and could see his apartment building as the drone rose higher.
“There’s my flat!” Rick said as he saw the drone pass by the 42nd floor.
Soon Winston’s drone rose above the building, which was 60 floors high.
“Don’t you think you’re going a little too high? I think Amazon and UPS drones sometime pass over the building on their routes from the packaging facilities,” Rick asked.
“No I think we’re fine, you need to be like 500 feet off the ground before there’s a prob—”
Winston’s reply was cut off by the loud sound of a siren. The two shot their gaze up to the drone and watched as an FAA monitor drone approached it rapidly.
“You are 20 feet above the maximum height allowed for recreational use,” a robotic voice said from the iPad in Rick’s hand.
He glanced down and saw that the voice had come from the FAA drone, which he could see in the video feed coming from Winston’s drone. He shot a smirk over at Winston, who laughed and shrugged.
“Return to the ground immediately,” the FAA drone said.
Winston quickly lowered his drone to the ground, but had yet to practicing landing a drone from that height. The ground quickly approached and Winston wasn’t able to stop the drone in time before it crashed onto the ground.
“Shit!” he yelled, “You’ve got to be kidding me.”
“Don’t worry I’m sure we can place a 3D printing order to fix any of the parts,” Rick said, “I needed a part replaced for my Dyson fan a few weeks ago and a store downtown had it made in like a day.”
“All right fine, fine,” Winston said dejectedly, “it just sucks.”
“I know man,” Rick responded.
“Well, I think the Arsenal match is about to start, want to go check it out?” Winston asked.
“Sure dude,” Rick said back, eager to cheer up his friend.
The two headed back to Rick’s apartment and placed Samsung GearVR 4.0 headsets on their heads. Rick always had an extra pair lying around so the two could watch movies and sporting events together.
They both flipped over to SDSN, which was live streaming the soccer match from their London-based tech headquarters. The display in front of their eyes soon was a live 360 video from the front row of the Emirates Stadium, where Arsenal was playing the Tottenham Hotspurs. Rick and Winston’s view had placed them both right at the midline of the field. The game had just started.
“You down on the midline?” Rick asked.
“No, I like a higher view,” Winston replied, “I’m up in the second deck.”
Several minutes passed before Olivier Giroud scored for Arsenal.
“Woah!” Winston yelled, “what a goal!”
Rick didn’t say anything.
“Bro, did you see that?” Winston asked.
Winston took off his headset and looked over at his friend. Rick was fast asleep.
Field Test – Clayton Dyer
May 6, 2016
For my field test I am going to test and analyze how well 360° video and virtual reality could be utilized for educational purposes through the Google Cardboard as it stands today. The Google Cardboard launched in June of 2014 as an inexpensive virtual reality platform that is compatible with both Android and Apple cell phones. There are numerous mobile applications that have been released for the Cardboard, as well as hundreds of 360° videos on YouTube that can be watched using the headset.
The Cardboard was launched as a low-cost way of encouraging interest and development in virtual reality applications. The Samsung GearVR headset, Oculus Right, and HTC Vive have all launched since the Cardboard was released two years ago, but what makes the Cardboard special is it’s affordability. People are able to purchase to Cardboard on Amazon as well as several other websites for $15 or cheaper, a price that pails in comparison to some of the more high-end virtual reality platforms on the market today.
The Cardboard’s affordability is why I think it would make a great teaching tool in K-12 schools today. I think that the Cardboard could be beneficial for education in two main ways. First, 360° videos are able to immerse viewers in a totally different world, giving Cardboard wearers the ability to “visit” foreign countries, dive underwater, see what the surface of Mars looks like, and more. This capability would be a significantly cheaper way teaching kids in schools today about places and topics than going on field trips, and would be a more interesting way to cover material. Taking a virtual reality tour of the Great Barrier Reef sounds much more appealing than reading about it in a textbook.
Second, utilizing the Cardboard in schools today would help Google in the goal it set out to accomplish from the start: to encourage interest and development in virtual reality applications. There is no better population to increase interest in new and developing technologies than the youth. Raising a generation of kids that are interested in and work on improving virtual reality would mean only great things for the young and growing industry.
For my field test I am going to view several videos through the Google Cardboard that could potentially be used for educational purposes. I will then analyze them in several categories such as video quality, how it could be utilized in schools today, and whether or not the videos could be implemented into a curriculum today. My hypothesis for this field test is that free, public 360° videos today are immersive and educational, but are not at the point where they could be used as a legitimate means of teaching today.
1. Clouds Over Sidra
Video Producer: Chris Milk and Gabo Arora
Accessed Through: Vrse (mobile app for Cardboard)
Potential School Topics: History, Social Studies, International Relations
Education Level: High School
Review: This video was awarded the prize in the Interactive category at the 2015 Sheffield Doc/Fest, an international documentary festival held in England. According to the production team’s website, the video “follows Sidra, a twelve year old girl that has fled her home in Syria due to the ongoing crisis and found herself in Jordan’s Za’atari refugee camp. It provides a brief glimpse at the day-to-day life that these refugees endure with narration from Sidra herself. Viewers are taken closer to the situation than a standard screen could ever convey, joining children at school and families as they gather round to eat”. I think that Clouds Over Sidra could be utilized excellently in a high school class, immersing students into daily life in Syria, a country and a topic that is consistently in the news. It is difficult to explain or describe what the situation in Syria is like, and many people are unaware of what life is like in the war-torn country. This video allows viewers to get a first-person look at daily life in Syria, an experience that cannot be matched when it comes to immersion.
2. The Click Effect
Video Producer: Annapurna Pictures
Accessed Through: Vrse
Potential School Topics: Science, Biology, Marine Biology
Education Level: Junior High School, High School
Review: The Click Effect follows two marine researchers who freedive deep below the ocean’s waves to capture and observe the “click” communication of dolphins and whales. The video’s quality was stunning and immersive, and the narration in the video provided context what was happening. I think that The Click Effect could be utilized in schools today; the video could be shown in a number of science-related classes to give students an immersive experience of marine life.
3. The Displaced
Video Producer: The New York Times
Accessed Through: Vrse
Potential School Topics: Social Studies, History
Education Level: High School
Review: The Displaced was produced by the New York Times in an effort to shine a light on the 30 million children around the world that have been displaced from their homes as a result of wars. The video follows three children, Oleg, Hana and Chuol, who have been forced from their homes in the Ukraine, Syria, and the Sudan, respectively. According to the filmmakers, the video provides an “uncanny feeling of connection with people whose lives are far from our own”, and is meant to evoke a sense of empathy and community. The Displaced immerses viewers into a world completely different than their own, and tells the stories of three kids who have been uprooted from their homes. I think that this video could be utilized in a number of different high school classes to give students an up close look at the effects of wars across the glove, and to give kids a look at a life that is very different from the one that they know.
4. Scuba Diving the Galapagos Islands in 3D
Video Producer: Nicolas Sylvain
Accessed Through: YouTube
Potential School Topics: Science, Biology, Marine Biology
Education Level: Elementary School, Junior High School, High School
Review: This video provided viewers with an immersive 360° 3D tour of underwater life around the Galapagos Islands. Several different scenes in the video take viewers to different parts of a scuba diving expedition, and numerous different species of aquatic life are seen. Despite the unique nature of the video, there are two main drawbacks to it. First, the quality of the video is not that great, and is slightly blurry when viewed on the Cardboard. Second, there is no narration over the video describing what is happening, just ambient music in the background.
My hypothesis before conducting this test was that although 3D videos viewed through the Google Cardboard would be immersive, they would not be at the points of being a legitimate means of teaching. Looking back on his hypothesis now, I think that I was partially right. As predicted, the 3D videos I tested were definitely immersive, particularly The Click Effect. At this point I would say that teaching strictly through the use of 3D videos is unreasonable – there simply is not enough content out there today. I had trouble finding 3D videos for the Cardboard on YouTube that could be used for teaching purposes (Scuba Diving the Galapagos Islands was the only YouTube video I used for this test). The videos which I found on Vrse, however, could undoubtedly be used for educational purposes. The three Vrse videos I tested and wrote about in this field test I think could be implemented into a curriculum today. I think The Displaced and Clouds Over Sidra could be a very useful tool for high school students; they provide viewers with striking visuals and powerful stories regarding refugees in the world today, and those stories are told through an immersive 3D experience.
I believe the future of 3D videos being used for educational purposes is bright. The videos which I viewed for this field test I think could be implemented into schools today. However, the biggest problem at the moment is strictly the fact that there simply are not enough videos out there. I think that it is only a matter of time before the number of 3D videos compatible with Google Cardboard increases.
The Google Cardboard is an inexpensive way to provide people with an immersive 3D virtual reality experience. Using the Cardboard headset in schools would provide teachers with a unique tool to conduct lessons and students with a taste of virtual reality technology. Utilizing the Cardboard for educational purposes could also foster a generation of students that are interested in virtual reality technology. I think that it is only a matter of time before the number of educational 3D virtual reality videos increases, and before this technology will be implemented into the education system.
Assignment 5 – Clayton Dyer
May 4, 2016
The SparkFun Luminosity Sensory Breakout – TSL2561 is a light sensor that is capable of measuring both small and large amounts of light. I think that a cheap light sensor such as this one could be utilized in journalism (my planned profession), specifically news stories related to the environment. One possible way this sensor could be used is to measure sunlight on local rooftops. This sensor could be placed on various rooftops, and in different locations on rooftops, to measure the sunlight that they receive throughout the day. This would inform people as to which parts of their house receive the most sunlight and where good locations are to put solar panels up. Whether it is for residential or commercial use, this sensor could be utilized in a news story about whether or not your house or office building is a good place for a solar panel to be placed.
Another sensor that could be utilized for a news story is the Temperature Sensor – TMP36. News stations frequently do stories about how cold weather affects various aspects of your house (especially in Syracuse). A good idea for a story that incorporates this sensor would be to find out which parts of an average house are have the most cold air draft, or to find out where heat is escaping from a house. Placing several of these sensors throughout various areas of a house and collecting readings on the temperatures in those locations would provide data on which parts of an average house are the warmest and coldest. If you are able to find out where heat is escaping from a house you can then offer solutions to the problem and save people money.
Assignment 4 – Clayton Dyer
May 1, 2016
Drones are already becoming increasingly popular among technology enthusiasts today, and for both recreational and professional use. With expanded video streaming capabilities and GPS-based flying, as well as a more affordable price, drones will surely start to become increasingly prevalent in the world of journalism. Drone technology will become more advanced and affordable in the coming years, but already there are several great uses for drones when it comes to journalism.
Drones are perfect for journalism in a number of ways. First, they can capture footage of locations that would be inaccessible to photographers on foot (and are significantly cheaper than getting a helicopter). The quality of the imagery drones are capturing today has also greatly improved in recent years, and there are numerous different options when it comes to cameras that can be equipped to a drone.
There are numerous ways a drone could be utilized when it comes to journalism. A drone is perfect way to capture footage of a crime scene or house fire, could (in the future possibly) be used to capture footage of sporting events, and would be a great way to record footage of nature. The ability to live stream video also makes drones particularly appealing to broadcast journalism – using a drone to capture and live stream video on a news broadcast would be a significantly cheaper and easier way to get footage of an event than using a helicopter. Drones could also be utilized in the weather portion of a television broadcast, capturing up to the minute aerial footage of the weather in a particular location.
Final Product Plan – Clayton Dyer
April 28, 2016
Budz is a mobile app designed to connect friends and music lovers alike through. This app is designed to bring the social media experience to the untapped and limitless world of music. Numerous massively successful mobile applications have already accomplished this – people use Instagram to show their friends who they’re with and where they are through pictures. People use Twitter to broadcast to the Internet their thoughts and opinions. People use Facebook to connect with friends and to post statuses and links that show who they are as a person. Now people will use Budz to seamlessly broadcast to their friends what music they are listening to and who their favorite artists are. When it comes to social media today the goal is for users to express themselves through these mobile applications and online platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. With Budz, people will now have the opportunity to express who they are through their taste in music, discover new music, see what their friends are listening to, and follow along with the musical trends in their friend group.
Budz syncs with a users music library of choice – whether it be iTunes, Spotify, Tidal, Soundcloud, or a number of other music applications – to create a constantly updating “Currently Listening” feed, displaying what the user is listening to at that moment to their friends in the application. Users can scroll through this feed to see what their friends are listening to as well, and are offered the option to preview, remember for later, “thumbs up”, and buy songs that they find and like. Budz also generates a “Top Charts” list, a compilation of the most listened to songs, artists, and genres amongst a user’s friend group. Users have will have the opportunity to physically view the musical trends in their among their friends in one simple location. Finally, a user’s profile displays to their friends the users most listened to and recently listened to songs, or a user’s “musical profile”, as well as a short biography that the user can create to display to their friends who they are.
In today’s day and age, everybody is looking for ways to broadcast their personality and who they are to their friends and followers. Instagram, Twitter and Facebook have dominated the social media landscape for years 10 years now, but Budz is designed to take the social media experience in a new direction: music. Users will utilize the app to show their friends what music they like, what they listen to, and when they listen to it. There is no other app on the market today that allows its users to broadcast their music preferences and tendencies to their friends until now. Music is a massive part of many people’s lives, and those people and more can now show that side of the personality to their friends.
Budz Mobile App Final Product Plan
Assignment 3 – Clayton Dyer
April 26, 2016
I 3-D scanned my BB-8 Droid from Sphero using the mobile app 123D Catch. My first scan attempt failed, but the second attempt succeeded after over 24 hours of processing. I uploaded this 3-D scan to Sketchfab, which you can view here: https://sketchfab.com/models/2f5f9de11f164171a87b4dced6545130
Assignment 2 – Clayton Dyer
April 25, 2016
We were fortunate enough to have the opportunity to demo the Microsoft Hololens, and I was pleasantly surprised by the technology. I feel as though augmented and virtual reality previously has not lived up to the billing thus far, but the Hololens operated smooth and seamlessly.
When it comes to the augmented reality it produces the Hololens operated very well. The only gripe I had with the the Hololens was that the headset was slightly bulky. Considering the massive amounts of information processing the headset has to complete constantly it really is not that heavy. However, I think that the Hololens’ weight could become a legitimate concern when it comes to marketing the product. If Microsoft hopes users are going to wear the Hololens for many hours it is going to have to consider whether or not consumers are willing to wear the headset for extended periods of time.
That being said, I think that the possibilities for the Hololens are vast. The only feature I was able to experiment with was the ability to place and view holograms around a room, which I thought was very cool. However, there are of course many other uses for the Hololens, and CNET predicted what they believe to be the five best uses for the Hololens in the future.
When it comes to Hololens’ impact on my career (sports television and digital media production) in the future I think it is too early to tell how exactly it will factor in. However, there are two uses I can think of right now that would benefit me in the future.
First, as Microsoft featured in one of their promotional videos for Hololens, the device could be utilized for giving and receiving instructions. The example that Microsoft showed was a woman working on a drain pipe while a man she was videochatting with (through the Hololens) drew on an iPad where she needed to tighten through the use of holograms. I think that this feature could be utilized in a number of ways when it comes to television production. For example, producers could show field producers or directors where they wanted to place cameras or other equipment by placing holograms in a space to be viewed by the director wearing a Hololens.
Second, I really liked the idea of making any surface into a display; YouTube on the wall, email on the refrigerator, Twitter on your desk. I think that this would be a great way to converge all of the media that we consume into one platform. It would be easy to stay on top of email, Twitter, texting and more by wearing the Hololens and having all of those applications placed on surfaces in a room.
I’m very excited to see where Microsoft takes Hololens, and I hope that augmented reality becomes a feasible and readily available technology.
Clayton Dyer – Assignment #1
April 11, 2016
A piece of technology in science fiction that I believe we are on the verge of making a reality is the Regeneration Cradle featured in “Avengers: Age of Ultron”.
The Regeneration Cradle aids in the regeneration of human tissue and has the ability to print tissue and bond it to a patient’s cells. The cradle is used in the movie to heal Hawkeye, who was injured in the attack on a HYRDA Research base.
Although most probably rememebr the Regeneration Cradle as being the machine that created The Vision (which is a little more advanced than what is currently technologically fathomable) the idea of tissue regeneration and creation is one I believe to be on the horizon. 3-D printing has grown leaps and bounds in recent years, and artificially created organs are getting closer to becoming a reality.
By no means I am an expert or even a novice in biomechanical engineering, so the technology category that most interests me is the use of 360 video rigs and GoPros to produce immersive video experiences and VR videos. Something I would like to experiment with in my field test is the use of 360 camera rigs for sports, and whether or not the idea of watching sports via 360 degree videos is feasible.
Assignment #5 – Clayton Dyer
April 4, 2016
My product is a mobile app called Budz, which connects users through music. Similar to Twitter’s constantly updating feed of Tweets, Budz users can see what their friends are listening to on the “Currently Listening” page, which syncs with a user’s music platform of choice (iTunes, Spotify, etc.). Users also have the ability to like and preview the songs their friends are listening to, customize their profile page, and see a list of the most listened to songs, artists, and genres in their friend group.
Budz will generate revenue primarily through advertisements located on the “Currently Listening” and “Top Charts” pages. The app will also make money through merchandising – Budz is targeted towards college-age kids and with an appealing merchandising campaign, will be able to generate revenue on college campuses and online.
The funds I have been allocated will be spent on the initial setup of the app ($3,500), design ($3,000), and server space ($100/month). Advertising will begin to generate revenue in the third quarterly cycle, with a goal to bring in $500/month with an initial CMP of $.25 and a goal of 2,000 impressions per month to hit that goal.
Budz Business Model
Assignment 4 – Clayton Dyer
March 22, 2016
This is the link to my WordPress site. I hope to upload some of the videos I have done for my broadcast classes onto the site. I chose this appearance for now, but once I have uploaded more media I will probably change the appearance to be more interactive and visually striking. I have not been able to understand how to transfer the WordPress site to my Fat Cow web hosting account yet.