Adapting experiences for virtual and mixed reality

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Adapting Experiences for Virtual and Mixed Reality Adina Shanholtz Technical Evangelist @FeyTechnologist

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Microsoft Azure Stack overview Gregg Mattek / John Wildes

Adapting Experiences for Virtual and Mixed RealityAdina ShanholtzTechnical Evangelist


Types of Reality.There are 4VirtualAugmentedMixedTrue (you live this one every day)

Mixed Reality and Virtual Reality

Virtual RealityA simulated reality that replicates an environment and allows the user to interact with it.

Designing for Virtual RealityRule #1: Never Break PresenceHardwareMovementUser ControlsEnvironment

Well the first rule of VR is Never break Presence. What is presence, well in VR we define it as type of immersion.

Presence can be measured as the degree to which the virtual environment faithfully evokes a sense of reality that causes the user to suspend disbelief. The greater the suspension of disbelief, the greater the degree of presence achieved.

Researchers exploring virtual reality divide VR presence into three main subcategories: personal, social and environmental. Personal presence refers to the user perceiving that they physically exist within a virtual world. Social presence involves interactivity with other simulated or real entities within the virtual world. And environmental presence occurs when the virtual world seems aware of the VR user and reacts accordingly.

There have been white papers about presence and how to define it and achieve it since the 90s.


Mixed RealityA merging of real and virtual worlds where the physical and digital objects co-exist AND INTERACT in real time.

Designing for Mixed Reality

Including the holograms, the HoloLens creates the Mixed Reality environment by combining Spatial Sound and Spatial Mapping.Spatial sound orients the location of the sound in relation to the user, for example sounds can come from behind a user giving a location cue of where to gazeSpatial mapping done by the HoloLens camera maps the environment that youre in, relays that information to holograms and allows them to adapt to the environmentDesigning for Mixed Reality

HoloLens is a Mixed Reality Device

Device Walkthrough

Self-contained computerContaining more computing power than the average laptop, Microsoft HoloLens doesnt need external wires, markers, or cameras, nor a connection to a phone or PC, so you can move freely and untethered.

Advanced sensorsMicrosoft HoloLens has advanced sensors to capture information about what you're doing and the environment youre in.

Transparent lensesSee-through holographic lenses use an advanced optical projection system, so you can see holograms in your world.

Holographic Processing UnitThe HPU is custom silicon that processes a large amount of data per second from the sensors, enabling Microsoft HoloLens to understand gestures, where you look, and map the world around you, all in real time.


Spatial soundMicrosoft HoloLens synthesizes sound so that you can hear holograms from anywhere in the room. Its immersive, yet wont block out the real world.

Theres plenty of overlap in designing VR and MR experiences!Maintaining PresenceGestureUse of spaceSpatial sound makes all the difference. Humans are not naturally inclined to look above or behind us.Small things make a huge difference.Learnings From Building MR Demo

Remind the user theyre still interacting with their environment. Makes holograms feel more real. EX: objects falling to the floor, natural sound effect, etc.



Thank you!Adina Shanholtz


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