An Update on Learning AR/VR

It’s been a long time since I last posted. I’ve learned a lot in the last year and a half since Rockit. For my day job, I’ve taken a position as a Java developer, so I’m learning more and more about Java applications.

In my spare time, however, I have started learning Android development and augmented and virtual reality. Android was a pretty easy choice as it uses Java. I started by following a course on Udemy. After a little while, I didn’t feel like it was progressing fast enough and I wanted to do my own apps. I started following a Udacity course and proeeded to take a couple of those courses. At work, we have a hack day once a year where we can work 24 hours on a hack. (Any idea to better the company.) With a couple of coworkers, we created an app that ended up winning round one.

After attending Google I/O last May, I was very interested in learning how to use Google’s Project Tango api to make augmented and virtual reality apps. This led me to learn how to use Unity (and C#)! It was pretty easy as I followed another Udemy course. I created a few games following the course as I got to know Unity. It’s pretty intimidating at first.

After a couple of apps, I yearned to strike out on my own. I started making and designing my own game. The current version of the game is available in beta on the Google Play Store. You can check it out here: https://goo.gl/9upb1w This game required me to add the Tango api and learn how to use it. The game currently uses the Tango device to track player movement. I also added a heads up display (HUD) that includes buttons for players to heal themselves and attack monsters. The game thus far is augmented reality, so the monsters will show up around the player.

My game quired me to learn a lot and also showed me what I need to learn more about. For example, calculating the location and the player and randomizing the spawn points of enemies in relation to the player requires a lot of 3D math that I haven’t had to use since high school.

My new goal that I’m choosing to set for myself is to become an expert in VR/AR development. To do this, I hope to update this blog more frequently sharing my learning as I go. I signed up for another Udemy course, and I’m strongly considering the VR Nanodegree from Udacity. In addition, I have a long reading list of VR/AR books. I think myy biggest struggle is going to be coming up with ideas of what to code. If you have any suggestions, I’d love to hear them.

Here’s to always learning new stuff!


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