Call to Adventure - As presented in the Comdex Show Preview
meets Virtual Reality
and Erick Von Schweber
Wednesday, April 26, 1995
your 3D glasses and join the adventure. Virtual Reality is now real
on today's PCs. VR is the future of computing - the next dimension
beyond multimedia and the graphical user interface. And it will
be experienced at an exciting conference session - Exploring the
Multimedium: where Multimedia meets Virtual Reality.
is no ordinary conference. Attendees will actually be able to see
and experience VR in a lab-like setting. Just back from authoring
PC Magazine's first ever spread on Virtual Reality, the session
leaders will take you on an exploration of the edge of PC technology,
using the newest hardware, software, and presentation techniques.
An experience in interactive edutainment, this event will provide
both a good time and real information as you discover hard facts,
experience products, and start making sense of it all.
Reality used to be the province of programmers armed with expensive
workstations. Not any more. Two important trends have come together
to transform the landscape. VR authoring packages have advanced
to the stage where an end-user can create their own worlds point-and-click
style - no programming required. And hardware has progressed as
well, with single and dual pentium machines and affordable 3D graphics
accelerators, bringing SGI-(Silicon Graphics Inc.) level performance
to PCs. Now end users can create interactive 3D worlds where they
were previously limited to 2D multimedia. And those with programming
skills can develop in the same VR toolkits used on SGI machines,
now in Windows, add a mind-blowing six Pentium machine with ultra
performance graphics acceleration and rival yesterday's top of the
the lab, attendees will explore VR world creation software operating
in Windows and Windows NT. They will learn how products compare,
how they differ, experience hardware/software combinations that
make sense, and view applications important to the business user.
see end user products from Virtus, VREAM and Sense8, and a real-time
version of TrueSpace from Caligari. The newest Windows NT ports
of SGI's Open Inventor and the workhorse C++ toolkits of VR: WorldToolKit
from Sense8 and Autodesk's CyberSpace Developer Kit.
lab also will be equipped with a wide spectrum of hardware. Pentium
laptops and portables. Desktops from H-P. Intergraph's dual-Pentium
TD-5 with GLI graphics. Affordable graphics accelerators from Matrox,
Evans and Sutherland, and others. The highly specialized interface
peripherals of VR: 3D pointing and tracking devices and 3D stereoscopic
displays and projection.
moving to VR mean giving up the multimedia elements users have grown
accustomed to like sound, video and animation? And what will be
the role of 2D Windows applications in a 3D world? Attendees will
participate in an experiment to test a new hypothesis: that at the
juncture of multimedia and VR, there is a new world, a realm where
sounds embrace the user, where videos become integral parts of the
3D environment, and where users can freely walk around 3D animations
and interact with them! A new world where 3D objects link to Microsoft
Excel spreadsheets, where virtual documents launch Microsoft Word,
and where spinning a globe connects you to the World Wide Web.
conference attendees will have an unequalled opportunity to explore
these new vistas and experience the exciting reality of the Multimedium:
where Multimedia meets VR.
session leaders are experienced explorers of emerging technologies.
Linda and Erick Von Schweber, principles of Infomaniacs, a think-tank
based in cyberspace, are researching quantum computing and exploring
virtual reality as a new computing paradigm. Brad Epranian, President
of GRAY Productions of San Francisco, constructs and merges 3D graphics,
animation, virtual reality, multimedia, virtual puppetry and motion
capture for films and music videos.