June (NYVR Meetup, VR for Good)

Wednesday, June 20, 2018 - 18:00
Virtual Reality NYC
New York

I'm excited to announce our June meetup focused on VR for Good Causes. Below please find the line-up of amazing speakers.

Pierre-Felix Breton – Epic Games Enterprise

Come and meet Epic Games Enterprise to get an overview of what they are doing, what they are working on and chat with the team!

A review of the past accomplishments and insight of the Unreal Studio and Datasmith road-map will be presented, following with Q&A and chats about how you see Unreal used in your work.

Following the Meetup, Epic Games folks will be happy to continue the conversation at the Beer Authority where pizza will be offered!


About Pierre-Felix:

With, over 20 years of experience working with CAD, computer graphics, visualization, and rendering softwares. Pierre-Felix is a specialist in CAD interoperability and physically based rendering workflows. He contributed to the design and development of award-winning, world-class CAD software products such as 3ds Max, Revit, AutoCAD, mental ray, iray and V-Ray. Now a Sr Technical product Manager at Epic Games, Pierre-Felix is part of the team developing functionality relevant to the field of design & visualization in the Unreal Engine technology.

Susanna Pollack - Games For Change

Susanna Pollack is the President of Games for Change (http://www.gamesforchange.org/), the leading global advocate for the power of games and immersive media as drivers of social impact. In her role there, among other things she produces the annual G4C Festival (http://festival.gamesforchange.org/), held in NYC June 28-30. The G4C Festival is the largest industry facing gaming event in New York, dubbed by national media as “the Sundance of video games.”

G4C also recently launched the XR for Change (http://www.gamesforchange.org/what-we-do/sector-building/#vr-for-change), a new year-round initiative powered by Games for Change that seeks to unify XR developers, storytellers, researchers, technology companies producing XR hardware and users to create immersive experiences that have a shared mission to improve people’s lives. As part of the initiative G4C will host the XR for Change Summit (http://festival.gamesforchange.org/festival-xr-for-change)on the last day of the G4C Festival on June 30. XR4C also hosts Talk and Play events in NYC where the G4C community and attendees can experience best in class social impact XR experiences and hear from their creators. The initiative also hosts an Ambassador group comprised of top XR developers, hardware producers, academics, NGO leaders and educators. This cohort of leaders maps the way forward for the XR4C initiative, and provides perspectives on new applications of VR/AR/MR by sharing insight from various communities and sectors so that practitioners can have a set of common resources that continue to sustainably build the field.

Susanna will be moderating a panel on using XR for Social Impact & Change with three XR4C Ambassadors:

- Courtney Cogburn (https://socialwork.columbia.edu/faculty/full-time/courtney-d-cogburn/), Columbia University

- Jamie Pallot (http://emblematicgroup.com/about/), Emblematic Group

- Adaora Udoji (http://adaoraudoji.com/), NYU & The Boshia Group

Patrick Benad & Tommy Tanyag – Jaunt

Jaunt - Decisions: Party's Over - Binge drinking can have very serious consequences, and by combining our tools with Diageo's creative vision, we were able to create an experience that will leave a lasting impact on consumers as they navigate decisions in their lives around drinking responsibly.

Siddharth Saxena - Oblix, “Go Guess”

Oblix is a VR startup based in Brooklyn. Oblix's mission is to allow people to explore the world together in virtual reality. Go Guess is a multiplayer geographic guessing game developed by Oblix. Go Guess allows users to explore the world using a combination of 360° media, 3D map environments, and avatar-based social interaction. Go Guess places users in various locations in virtual reality, and asks them to guess where in the world they are, either individually or as a team. Go Guess is an exciting way to interactively explore the real world in virtual reality, and it's the first product released publicly by Oblix.

Nate Hamlin and Stina Hamlin– State of Mind Media

State of Mind Media was established because we wanted to develop impactful stories to create change. As a company, we are focusing on amplifying indigenous voices and changing the narrative to empowerment, reclamation of culture and sharing the knowledge to honor and care for the earth. http://www.statemedia.nyc/

We will be demo’ing the following VR Experiences:

Blood Memory XR (https://www.bloodmemoryvr.com/): RECONNECT WITH YOUR ANCESTORS AND THE EARTH Blood Memory: The Experience (https://www.bloodmemoryvr.com/) is an XR Series, where each installation will take you on a journey to a different region of the United States to stimulate your blood memory. You will walk away with a sense of connection to the land and the community as you explore sites where human impact and destruction are visceral, then watch as the land comes back to life in front of your eyes revealing and remembering how your ancestors had lived there before.

Doctors Without Borders: Mohammed and Ismail’s Journey: A Story from the Rohingya Exodus Mohammed and his family awoke one morning to the sound of gunfire in their village in Myanmar. The father of three describes how his son Ismail went from having a relatively normal life playing soccer with his friends, to trekking through rain-drenched forests to escape Myanmar, and falling sick with diphtheria while trying to settle into life at a refugee camp in Bangladesh. Mohammed and Ismail’s story echoes those of some 700,000 other Rohingya, members of an ethnic Muslim minority forced to flee their homes and their country following a violent campaign by the Myanmar military starting in August 2017. They join hundreds of thousands of other Rohingya people in Bangladesh, uprooted by earlier cycles of violence and persecution. Learn more about this VR series at http://www.forcedfromhome.com

Say Our Name:

"Say Our Name" is an immersive hip-hop dance piece filmed on the streets of New York City engaging the viewer to look into the eyes of the people that the brutality is happening to everyday on streets throughout our nation. We must remember and say these names and never stop having this conversation until there is change and the injustice stops. #BlackLivesMatter


Samantha Quick

Samantha Quick is a VR filmmaker and animator with over 90 works published in The New York Times. For the next year, she will be crafting a story with a nonprofit in the Philippines called The Yellow Boat of Hope, an NGO which provides access to education for children in the Philippines, some of whom swim to school. The film will draw from local mythology and combine underwater footage, animation as well as the verbal accounts of the children, teachers, and parents involved in the program.

Eduardo Neeter – FactualVR

FactualVR is a start-up company aiming to build a VR platform to help Law Enforcement and Prosecutors to accurately replicate and communicate the facts around crime scenes. We aim to support the workflow and collaboration through the end-to-end process: from crime scene technicians, to investigators, to prosecutors, to defenders and to eventually jurors in every court room.

FactualVR recently partnered with the Glimpse Group to develop a demo and participate in the NIST VR HUD Challenge for First Responders ( https://www.nist.gov/ctl/pscr/funding-opportunities/prizes-challenges/2018-virtual-reality-heads-display-navigation ). We presented our concept solution during their yearly Conference and won the 6th prize among more than 50 initial participants. We will describe our work in the Criminal Justice domain, as we as show a demo of the VR HUD concept.

Skye Von - little GIANT Wolf

little GIANT Wolf is a transcultural transmedia story studio that helps brands, agencies, publications and non-profits cut through the clutter and meaningfully engage with their audience and consumers with unique, value-driven content that makes issues personal. https://www.littlegiantwolf.com

I will be demo’ing the following VR Experiences:

Paper Doll Origami

PAPER DOLL ORIGAMI is a 2-user, 2-room interactive narrative VR experience exploring the relationship dynamic of superior, inferior, and equal. Both users are allowed to experience each role through an interactive story of an Origami artist and a paper doll, and the journey they go on in which they both become equals when the artist transforms into a paper doll, only to end up switching places when the paper doll becomes human, leaving the artist behind as a paper doll. https://www.paperdollorigami.com


Malala VR For Good:

We meet Rani, whose name means queen, and in her right, she is a queen. With the support of her family, she has taken the freedom to believe that a girl can achieve anything she sets her mind to in India. Her mind is set on becoming a police chief. But she knows there a long way ahead of her to achieve it. https://www.oculus.com/vr-for-good/


Justin Lutz - GivLuv

GivLuv is the world’s first VR fundraising platform to allow seamless in-headset donations, so people everywhere can use virtual reality to spread some good vibes in actual reality. https://givluv.theprimacy.com/

Jesse Casman, co-organizer of theta360.guide, developers site for RICOH THETA cameras, heavy focus on building THETA V ("vee," the latest THETA model) plug-ins - the plug-ins are Android apps that are installed inside the camera - being used in real estate, construction, auto sales, law enforcement, and more

For the demo (imitating format of demos I see already listed on the meetup site):

Jesse Casman - theta360.guide

theta360.guide is a developers site focused on RICOH THETA cameras, with a forum, GitHub repos, YouTube channel, local technical workshops and tons more all aimed at building useful and exciting VR-based experiences for businesses and consumers. Jesse will be doing a telepresence demo - showing off a RICOH THETA V doing 4K live streaming into an HTC Vive headset - Technology that's of interest to NASA and SpaceX as a cost savings technology.


Microsoft (Across from Port Authority)

11 Times Square (42nd St. @ 8th Avenue)