Happy 2018 Everyone! Hopefully your year has started off well. We’ve been busy here at Realities.io completing many of the improvements and updates you’ve seen glimpses of throughout 2017. But most importantly of all, we’ve been building out our team here in Berlin!
In addition to the existing team around the founders David Finsterwalder and Daniel Sproll and the photogrammetry master Valerio Rizzo, we had Marcel Poppe, Shah Shahrabi, and Karen Nemeth have joining us. Marcel excels at software engineering and computer vision — building out the tools and infrastructure that will allow us to launch new, improved experiences more frequently. Shah has been with us for some time as our intern, but has now joined on a more permanent basis. As our Technical Artist in training, he is focused on using his background in game design to enhance your time in Realities. Lastly, Karen has signed up to help on the business front. We’re all excited to be here, introducing you to out-of-reach stories from around the world.
Where will those stories take you? Last year we experimented with large scale environments. Our R&D with wide-scale regions allowed you to travel to Death Valley and hear a narrative of the desert as written by Reyner Banham. Later in the year, Realities brought you to the cathedral of Cologne, Germany to see how VR can provide an accurate sense of vertical scale. Being awarded the Grimm Online Award for this production was great validation of our research. Thanks for all your valuable engagement!
Besides pushing the boundaries of what is possible with photogrammetry, our other focus over the last year was expanding the opportunities for content creators to create volumetric experiences. We therefore launched pilot projects with selected partners. The first will be released within the first few months of 2018 — here’s a little list of what is on the horizon:
- First up: A tour of ancient and modern sites in Armenia, done in conjunction with our close friend Az Balabanian (who also produced that team video above.) Armenia was the first country to adopt Christianity at the turn of the 4th century, but was also the first to withstand a modern, strategized genocide.
- Terres d’Exploration, a chance to explore the glaciers, prairies, and caves of Canada’s Arctic circle, as provided by UnisTV. We recommend turning off your heater while walking around the most remote, stunningly gorgeous northern reaches of our planet for a more immersive, sustainable experience. ;-)
- WDR, the German broadcaster who sponsored the Cologne Cathedral production, is back to feature an experience like no other. Journey into the heart of our country’s last active coal mine and learn what a day in the life of a miner was like before the mine closed forever.
- Lastly: When ISIS left Iraq they bugged much of the infrastructure they left behind, ensuring that innocent civilians would still suffer casualties long after the fighting has ended. NowHere Media is actually in Iraq as these words are written to bring this emotional story to you.
We hope you have as much fun in these experiences as we have had making them. They’ll all be available in a new format: as a DLC! We’ve heard your complaints about the file sizes of each experience and have determined this is the best solution until we’ve advanced our compression methods. Soon you’ll be able to pick and choose which experiences you explore the most, to properly allocate hard drive space.
This is the first post of many to update you on our company operations, productions, and learnings. Stay tuned for more exciting news and rare glimpses of how we bring reality into the virtual world. See you soon!