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Anyone looking at 360º videography for Virtual Reality?

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Rich RubaschAnyone looking at 360º videography for Virtual Reality?
by on Feb 23, 2016 at 9:23:39 pm

We've been exploring augmented reality for some time but recently heard about the boom that is imminent with virtual reality. Don't know of many video companies specializing in 360º video in our area and cameras are starting to pop up.

Anyone looking at it?

Rich Rubasch
Tilt Media Inc.
Video Production, Post, Studio Sound Stage
Founder/President/Editor/Designer/Animator
http://www.tiltmedia.com


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Timothy J. AllenRe: Anyone looking at 360º videography for Virtual Reality?
by on Feb 24, 2016 at 5:05:25 pm

Rich,
I don't know many who are doing it, but you can bet I'll be exploring it this year. Most of my work is helping organizations explain how products work, success stories and/or branding to make organizations more transparent. Proprietary information needs to be considered, but can you imagine having that tech onboard the space station and in mission control? I expect "Experiential videos" such as the ones Facebook has collaborated with the government on to show the fighter pilot views and inside some of the NASA facilities to be a huge slice of the market. I can see travel shows, cooking shows, how to repair cars... "lifehacks" and all sorts of other topic areas taking advantage of this.


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Rich RubaschRe: Anyone looking at 360º videography for Virtual Reality?
by on Feb 24, 2016 at 6:03:24 pm

The key to the tech is how it is used. You can only point a camera in one direction with a set field of view. But if you record a scene in 360˚ view, left right and up and down, imagine recording a video with all views and allowing the viewer to choose which direction they were looking. Go to any AT&T store and look at the Samsung headset. It's pretty cool. It is ok with stills, but I see a video being created where any view is visible...it's up to you to choose where to look. Takes more planning because all views should or could have action going on critical or ancillary to the story.

And you could have a lot of fun with it as well by setting up multiple storylines that utilize the same script and it's all how you set it up. Depending on where you set your vision you get a unique storyline. Then make the different setups interact in some unique way.

Possibilities really open up to creative storytelling.

Rich Rubasch
Tilt Media Inc.
Video Production, Post, Studio Sound Stage
Founder/President/Editor/Designer/Animator
http://www.tiltmedia.com


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Mark SuszkoRe: Anyone looking at 360º videography for Virtual Reality?
by on Feb 25, 2016 at 3:57:29 pm
Last Edited By Mark Suszko on Feb 25, 2016 at 3:59:48 pm

Waxing philosophical here...

This would have perhaps been the perfect platform for Robert Alman. He could have multiple simultaneous stories evolving around the viewer, and let the viewer choose how to watch, or re-watch.

We still process the visual world with just the two eyes in the front of our head, and everything we know about visual story-telling is based on having a curator of the experience, whom we call the Director or Editor, pre-filter and direct our attention to the slice of the world he or she wants us to concentrate on. There may well be action and information left "implied" but unseen, outside the frame, and that too, is an aesthetic choice made by the movie maker.

What I'm getting at is, we like certain directors for how they choose to curate our experience, but this technology pushes the idea of the viewing experience being self-directed and unique to each viewer independently. When everybody in a theater is wearing VR helmets, each looking at their own selected viewpoint, is there really a collective audience anymore?

I anticipate that a lot of the early adopters of this tech are going to make some really, really bad movies/experiences/whatever you want to call them, because there will be too little of a central "spine" to the main story. Instead, you'll have a mish-mash of potential dead-ends to explore, more similar to a gaming experience, or to the early days of hypertext novel writing.

There certainly are things this tech is going to be better at communicating than flat or 3-d single-perspective films/videos of the present. But the tougher nut to crack will be how to adapt narrative forms with this technology to still give a sense of a personal vision of a storyteller being curated to you and for you. I think we still really need that.


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Ned MillerRe: Anyone looking at 360º videography for Virtual Reality?
by on Feb 27, 2016 at 10:05:01 pm
Last Edited By Ned Miller on Feb 27, 2016 at 10:15:13 pm

Rich wrote:

"You can only point a camera in one direction with a set field of view."

Well, there's a reason for that, only some parts of a 360 degree image are worth looking at. Here's how I know this after spending a few thousand and countless days trying to market 360, although it was still photography I think the lessons are the same: Difficult to Monetize. There may be special applications, such as the NYPD putting it over an intersection to search for terrorists? Maybe gamers would be a market. Or news?

Here's my story: When 9/11 occurred the White House cancelled all public tours. So they had a new type of 360 photography done so people could take "virtual tours". I researched it and discovered it was a Nikon camera with a spherical lens, you take two 180 degree shots and their special software stitched it together. Where the tripod legs would show would be the Nikon logo. I was very, very excited and was sure this would be my FINAL get rich quick endeavor, but as you can tell because I am still perusing this forum, it didn't work out...

I got good at it but discovered some limitations so I graduated to Apple's QTVR (QuickTime Virtual Reality) and with a special tripod head adapter you took 36 photos in a circular manner, dumped them into their software and Presto! You had a 360 degree still. However, for interiors you had to make two passes: One for the interior, the other exposed for the windows. Then go into PhotoShop and lay your correctly exposed windows into the window frames. So now I was the expert and hot to trot to make my fortune.

But...the market of paying clients wanting to see the whole circle of the world, I couldn't find them. My natural inclination was to hit up realtors of mansions but they were so cheap, they wanted to pay $20 a room! And that was the mansion class. So I went after commercial real estate agents thinking 360 would be a powerful tool to lease a warehouse, etc. No go: cheapskates.

It turns out I couldn't even give away 360 for free! I'm a Civil War Nut First Class, so on my own dime I went to several famous battlefields in VA and I set the QTVR up at the exact spot of the hottest action, where the whole battle turned on this one place. I knew this would be the ultimate turn on for buffs. You could see exactly what the commanding general saw! So I approached the National Park Service with the idea and examples: I do it for free, they pay my gas, lodging and meals. Their answer: Not interested! Kept badgering them for a couple of years until I got, "Never. Is never good for you?"

I think doing it with video is kind of gimmicky, you have no control as you do in stills. Plus, the cost of these 360 video cameras is close to the GoPro's price point so how can a pro command more? Here's a link that lists the cameras for $400 and $60,000, not much in between:

http://dailytekk.com/2015/09/08/the-7-best-360-cameras-and-rigs-for-shootin...

Lastly, in every 360 situation there is a percentage of non-visual material. If you're at the railing looking into the Grand Canyon or Niagra Falls, what's being you is the parking lot. So I'm not investing a dime in 360 video. Thank God I didn't take the 3D bait when that was the best new thing. 360 video will be fun for drunks at a party and sophisticated technical training but I don't see how you can monetize it. However, I am very excited about Holography!

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
www,bizvideo.com


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Tim WilsonRe: Anyone looking at 360º videography for Virtual Reality?
by on Feb 27, 2016 at 10:50:23 pm

[Ned Miller] "However, I am very excited about Holography!"

I'm still holding out for Smell-o-Vision.

I think the larger issue with 360 is that most people aren't really looking for an interactive experience outside games.

And I mean interactive AT ALL. Media 100 launched this massive new multimedia NLE initiative with the example of Tom Cruise's sunglasses in Mission: Impossible -- click on the sunglasses, and be taken to a page where you can buy them.

Makes a great pitch, except that that's a terrible way to watch a movie, and a terrible way to shop for sunglasses. Nobody does that.

And they never actually showed how you'd represent on screen, "These glasses are for sale. Click to buy them!" There's no equivalent of a hyperlink. So before you could get people to change their behavior about interrupting a movie to buy sunglasses, you'd have to teach them HOW to do it. Impossible.

So the idea of user-selectable multiple storylines in the same space is in fact compelling....but only in video games, where there's also an interface for how those worlds relate to each other and what your expected behavior is.

I did a ton of real estate video, Ned, and I know exactly what you mean. It SEEMS like it'd work...but what I'm finding is that people want LESS multimedia. Still images, a slideshow AT BEST. Video is OUT. Look at Zillow, Realtor.com, Redfin, all those -- video is incredibly rare. The interactive map might be the most important dynamic media on the site. Video on a map seems cool too, but really , how often do you even consult Google Maps? It's more than you want.

Not to piss on anybody who's doing this. Good luck! Hey, I DID buy into 3D (four 3DTVs and counting). I WANT these nifty variations. You better believe I want to watch 360º VR content, and I'll pay quadruple if it's in 3D. Anybody need a preview audience? CALL ME!

But I sure don't get how to monetize it yet.....


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Mark SuszkoRe: Anyone looking at 360º videography for Virtual Reality?
by on Feb 29, 2016 at 5:22:28 pm

There's a new 3d cgi presentation format being used by realtors: it apparently uses a software that automatically stitches together 360-degree stills of each room of a house, into a full house model you can fly thru and walk-thru. The name escapes me: I may be able to look it up tomorrow.


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Jim SandersRe: Anyone looking at 360º videography for Virtual Reality?
by on Feb 29, 2016 at 9:03:50 pm

Here is a sample of what I think this is what you are referring to Mark. Scroll down to see and play the 360 view. http://glendalediggs.com/sps/1214idlewoodrd/ Cheers!


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Ned MillerRe: Anyone looking at 360º videography for Virtual Reality?
by on Feb 29, 2016 at 9:09:16 pm

Wow. Never seen anything like that. But knowing how cheap realtors are, I don't want to invest in it.

Ned Miller
Chicago Videographer
http://www.nedmiller.com
www,bizvideo.com


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Mark SuszkoRe: Anyone looking at 360º videography for Virtual Reality?
by on Mar 1, 2016 at 12:28:00 am

That's it! (The VR tech)


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Jim SandersRe: Anyone looking at 360º videography for Virtual Reality?
by on Mar 1, 2016 at 12:36:52 am

There is more info here: http://matterport.com/ Pricing is listed.


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