While HoloLens is being used by developers and companies alike to create wholly new and interesting experiences, it also has the ability to greatly enhance existing experiences. That's how hakuhodo-VRAR, a Japanese lab specializing in VR and AR technologies, is looking to leverage Microsoft's mixed reality headset to help people learn more about an important cultural artwork.
The team at hakuhodo-VRAR has applied mixed reality technology to The Folding Screen of Fujin and Raijin (Wind God and Thunder God Screens), a seventeenth-century artwork regarded as a national treasure, to help visitors learn more about its artist, Tawaraya Sotatsu, and his motivations. The ten-minute experience combines narration from a Kennin-ji monk with 3D graphics that illustrate what Sotatsu was trying to convey with the work. Microsoft explains:
Viewers will be immersed in a totally new way of experiencing cultural treasures as they are drawn into a dynamic graphic narrative featuring rainclouds alive with lightning and thunder, a lush Earth below, a vast cosmos, and other motifs. The advanced viewing experience also includes 3D renditions of works on the same Fujin and Raijin theme by Ogata Korin, Sakai Hoitsu and other artists of the Rinpa school who were inspired by Tawaraya Sotatsu, enabling viewers to compare the works.
This is a neat example of how HoloLens can be used to modify and enhance things like artworks and cultural artifacts in order to bring their stories to life. The mixed reality exhibit will be open to the public at the Kennin-ji Temple, Kyoto's oldest Zen temple, from February 22 through February 24. It will also be on display at the Kyoto National Museum from February 28 through March 2.
Update 4: Trump gives blessing to TikTok sale to Microsoft
TikTok may soon be owned by Microsoft. The company is reportedly in talks to buy out the U.S. portion of TikTok amid a rumored Trump administration order for TikTok owner Bytedance to divest. On Monday, President Trump says he does not oppose the sale so long as it is done by September 15.
Microsoft Edge is about to let you use Chrome themes from the web store
Microsoft Edge being built on Chromium has its advantages, mainly in that you an take advantage of Chrome's vast library of extensions. In the latest example of this, Microsoft has started allowing Edge users in the Dev channel install themes from the Chrome web store.
Need a new laptop to run VR? Here are the best devices out there now.
Using a laptop to power your VR system makes it easy to take it with you wherever you go. Not just any laptop is going to work for VR, though, so we rounded up your best options right here.
Up your VR immersion level with a fine HOTAS controller
Love flight or dogfighting games in VR? You could probably benefit from on of these HOTAS controllers. We've rounded up options for casual users and pros alike.