Defining (x) Realities
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Defining (x) Realities

Anyone who studies or talks about augmented reality and virtual reality technologies will inevitably get asked the question: but how is that augmented/mixed/virtual reality? Isn’t that more AR than VR? How one talks about these technologies is continually evolving. With every application/device that is released a version of this debate gets kicked up again, whether…

Beyond Boundaries: Navigating the Art and Ethics of Hyper-Reality Design
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Beyond Boundaries: Navigating the Art and Ethics of Hyper-Reality Design

If you’ve just lost ability to differentiate between simulated reality and the authentic one, you’ve attained hyperreality, as defined by Jean Baudrillard, and described more recently in Curtis Hickman’s Hyper-Reality: The Art of Designing Impossible Experiences. Hickman, a renowned experience designer and co-founder of The Void, introduces a design framework for the creation of immersive…

Researching XR Futures
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Researching XR Futures

Over the past few years, my research has been focused on exploring the imagined futures of XR technologies. Beyond just trying to understand what kind of future projects industry envisions, I’ve been particularly interested in studying the values and logics that anchor these visions. There’s an essential set of questions that emerges when industry enthusiasts…

Pixel Theory
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Pixel Theory

(Or, have we ever been physical?) Still from Shinjuku Calling (Yamagami Yukihiro 2014) Layering of the virtual on to the real is usually how Augmented Reality is described and explained, but layering is a strange metaphor to understand what is at stake when considering the physical-digital environments we live with.  As provocation, consider when typographic ink lands on physical paper;…

The Ambivalence of Beauty (Filters) in AR: Gender Exploration & Selfie Culture
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The Ambivalence of Beauty (Filters) in AR: Gender Exploration & Selfie Culture

‘Pop Beauty Stains, Filter” Heemsbergen L. 2023 (Midjourney) While using apps like TikTok or Instagram, if you decide to include an augmented reality (AR) filter (or lens) onto your image the top filters that come up, algorithmically targeted to users, will almost always include at least one ‘beauty filter’. A beauty filter is an AR…

“My VR does not acknowledge me as a person”: Is the metaverse leaving disabled users behind?
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“My VR does not acknowledge me as a person”: Is the metaverse leaving disabled users behind?

Last month, Apple revealed its long-teased Vision Pro headset, a device that uses augmented reality technology to project a digital image onto the physical world. But, Apple revealed, it won’t work — at least out of the box — if you wear glasses. Instead, you’ll need to buy inserts to attach to the device lens. Apple’s…

The identity, emotion and gaze behind Apple’s Vision Pro
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The identity, emotion and gaze behind Apple’s Vision Pro

When Apple introduced their Vision Pro it represented another iteration of the immersive head-mounted display dating back to Ivan Sutherland’s experiments in the 1960s, but with a difference. Apple’s Vision Pro is not only a high-resolution immersive display for the person wearing it, but also features an external display that gives the impression for those…

From Calming Spaces to Superpowered Avatars: Exploring How VR and AR could Enhance Health and Well-being by Recreating Spatial, Social, and Feedback Reality
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From Calming Spaces to Superpowered Avatars: Exploring How VR and AR could Enhance Health and Well-being by Recreating Spatial, Social, and Feedback Reality

Virtual and Augmented Reality technology has seen rapid advances in the past decade. Previously, entering into a virtual environment often meant that users had to put on a heavy enclosed headset connected to a desktop PC through thick cables or wear 3D glasses and walk into a specially constructed video-theatre like room where the 3D…