Conferences aren't exactly new; there are conferences for just about every industry out there, and commonly, conferences are regarded as valuable tools to show off new products and services, as well as network with others in that particular field. Sometimes even speeches are delivered that provide particular insight into a field. Oculus, meanwhile, is bringing out some of its senior engineers to set up its own conference, this time around virtual reality.
Oculus' Chief Operating Officer, Laird Malamed, will be joined by other Oculus staffers to put on a one day event on November 2 called “Future of Virtual Reality with OculusVR.” The event is set to take place at Cambridge, Massachusetts
' Microsoft Nerd Center, and will include not only a variety of demonstrations in the field, developer workshops, employment workshops, and a set of technical Q&A sessions along with a chance to get hands-on with the company's flagship technology, the Oculus Rift
headset. The event will be free to attend, though the company is encouraging attendees to offer up a donation to the Boston Children's Hospital., as the event is set to take place the same day as Boston Extra Life, which serves as a gaming event with that particular charity in mind.
Interestingly, it won't be just about the hardware, either, as “multiple Boston-based game studios” are set to present a set of topics about implementing games on the Oculus Rift thanks to exposure to the developer kit. The industry in general will also get a good once-over, and there will likely be plenty of networking opportunities with area game designers, including not only some lesser-known studios like Owlchemy Labs, but also some much more immediately recognizable names like Microsoft will be in on the action.
It's a good discussion to have overall, too, as the field of virtual reality is making rapid gains once again, out of the dark ages of “Dactyl Nightmare” and the like. Sure, most of us were amazed by that clunky polygonal menace, but now with first person games that look like “Skyrim” and play like “Call of Duty: Black Ops 2
,” virtual reality is taking on a much stronger emphasis on the term “reality.” There were times in “Skyrim” when it almost seemed like I could walk right into the video, and with the kind of hardware that the Oculus Rift represents, it will only look more realistic.
Getting a handle on where the market is going is probably a sound idea, and getting more developers on the same page will also likely generate sound results. Hopefully, “Future of Virtual Reality with OculusVR" will generate some exciting new developments and get us all that much closer to a gaming environment that's even more immersive than the current variety.