New dimensions of VR, when Oculus meets Kinect
With a unique idea, we connected Oculus Rift virtual reality glasses with Xbox Kinect, a device that detects motion, so users not only can look around but also move in the virtual world.
The paired devices were connected to a glider aircraft simulator: the cockpit appeared in the Oculus Rift glasses, while Kinect detected the user’s arm on a virtual joystick who could control the aircraft this way. The Oculus Rift itself is a very important milestone in the history of the virtual reality. It is expected to arrive this summer to retail stores. However, the experience of Oculus could be made more enjoyable if the user not only can look around but can interact with the virtual world. We tried different methods for interaction, for example audio control or point-view control but Kinect seemed like the best solution to detect motion and gestures. By pairing these two devices we made a special simulator. We chose gliding as theme because many users wish to try themselves out as pilots. This way they can even fall towards the earth but fortunately no real danger is involved. Aside from simulators, other areas can benefit from this technology, it offers great opportunities in sports or in education as well.