3d icons for your Mixed Reality application

The default app launchers for Mixed Reality applications built in Unity is a flat image - essentially a splash screen on a floating rectangle.

2D app launchers on a couch

I’m sure we can have better immersion than a bunch of 2d panels around the place.

The good news is, Windows Mixed Reality supports this, and have a guide on how to do it - so you can easily turn it into this:

3D app launchers on a couch

Isn’t that much nicer? Grab the gist and use it in Unity straight away, or read on for usage.

WebXR - the game changer

Let’s start with a message of mine on the HoloDevelopers Slack Community I wrote yesterday:

So I’m doing my first WebXR project now (on Babylon). I must say, I’m loving it. Having the power of every NPM module under the sun makes it extremely easy to integrate with things, and the async-by-default nature of the web just makes delivering content nice and simple. Deployment of new versions and things is also ridiculously simple, including things like multiple environments (dev/test/prod type thing) - it’s basically using the maturity of the web for immersive experiences.

Plus it’s easy to preview/emulate the base experience, and you can just use normal web stuff for debug/UI/options etc. It’s just an amazing fit.

I just felt like gushing. Go back to your normal lives 🙂

I think that captures it all quite nicely - really, you can stop reading here if you want - or the even more conscise version:

WebXR is a game-changer in immersive technologies, especially in enterprise.

Why? Read on.

Be warned this is developer centric. You won’t find many art or design opinions here.

OBS for remote meets

We’ve recently had to pivot to fully remote church service at my church, for reasons that are hopefully quite apparent.

We had a few constraints

  • Accessible by the technically illiterate - need to see the stream in a single click
  • We wanted several people presenting - to keep a discussion and community feel
  • As little contact as possible - ideally none. All the presenters meeting in 1 place means that one infection can take down the lot, not to mention the public health concerns of doing such.
  • Usable by technically illiterate - the presenters are not necessarily literate either

Is this your situation? The good news is, we did this in a relatively straight forward way - using OBS Studio, Zoom and YouTube Live.

Read on to see how

How does the Hololens 2 matter?

So that happened, the Hololens 2 has been released. A few people have asked me what I think, so it’s about time I got my thoughts down on paper the interwebs. I’ve had a day or 2 to mull over it now - so here it is for you.

The main features touted are improved FOV, fully articulated hand tracking and increased engagement and collaboration - partnerships and technology enablements.

But how will this play out? How much is smoke and mirrors? What are the effects here? Read on for my thoughts.

Seedy Fake Data

With fake user authenication done, we had everything we needed to generate fake data.

The seed data was generated on every deployment to our dev and demo environments - which gave us nice, clean, predictable demos, and our dev server was never a terrible mess of temporary data (yeah, you know what I’m talking about).