Version3sized

Issue 2. Virtual Fictions. Storytelling in VR

Cardboard pipeline 75% there. Natacha Merritt diary, #5. December, 2015.

By Fabien

Its 3am and my baby work me up with endless needs. Now I can’t sleep. Sbsessing on the latest VR tech pipeline that seems to be in reach at last. Today we tested our cardboard pipeline and it’s nearly ready. Here are the gritty dry specs:

The custom hardware is held together by screws – huge improvement from rubber-bands and zip ties. It has true Stereo 220˚ Field of View, 30 frames per second, mounted on a 3D printed rig. The entire thing took an extra day of testing because the rig holds the cameras upside down for this new player.

It requires me to run 4 python scripts: to stitch, produce, pack and then upload. It uploads to a server that the Android based app can download from. Apparently erotic content of any legal kind won’t be blocked. It’s hilarious how serious the warning messages are though when you install an apk file on your phone. It basically says you’re risking the damn thing imploding. Anyways, we did fun tape measure tests to determine best practices for optimal immersion and stereo effect as well as exact FOV.

Anyone with a cardboard – currently selling at 7$ – can view the content!! Yippee. They click a link and download our Permission app and start to view the content. This is super exciting and impressive. A little under a year ago we didn’t know Cardboard would be our first target market, but given that all the other headsets aren’t consumer ready, this path makes sense. So now we are daring to start over making content. 5 shoots are unusable on this new pipeline due to different lens calibration. Some may be salvageable down the line, which makes me think I may want to try to flip the streams of this one sexy shoot and run it through Processing to see if it magically works. Anyways, we’re amassing a great skill set of best practices and knowledge of what work best in the medium.

Next, we have to shoot next test with 3 takes, 2 to cut together in Final Cut and then one to connect when you look behind you. Light should be studio light – stable and even. Need to give some love to binaural sound. Then mess around with some codecs and run all through steps 2  through 4. We decided that 10 more tech rehearsals will get us to a green light to focus on the content: the oil massages, caresses, leg and foot fetish, story telling, and secret baths… so much to look forward to.

 

Natacha Merritt© 2015. All rights reserved.