Alice Space wants to take you on a moonwalk using Mixed Reality. Best buckle up!
Noitom has been making some interesting strides in immersive technologies since it was first founded in 2011. It leverages motion capture technology in a variety of interesting ways, which have included producing haptic gloves – the Hi5 Vr Glove – that allow users to “bring” their hands into the virtual and the Project Alice VR B2B VR platform.
The company, headquartered in Beijing, developes world-class motion capture technology for consumer and industrial markets through the integration of MEMS sensors, pattern recognition, human kinetics and wireless transmission. Noitom’s technology has been used in animation, film, medical applications, robotics and gaming.
With their latest project, however, they’re looking to go a bit further – quite literally. Noitom partnered with Australian Virtual Reality development studio Opaque Space and NASA to create a space exploration experience designed for places such as museums and science centers.
Alice Space aims to take VR “out-of-the home” and into the hands of educators and entertainment venues. “We have developed an affordable, long-term, turn-key solution that can be monetized while delivering stunning “edutainment” experiences in an outer space setting.
“Our goal in creating this mixed reality, multi-user platform was to bring fantastic, unattainable experiences to a mass audience. And what is more fantastic and unattainable than being able to walk on the moon?” says Roch Nakajima, President of Noitom International. “With Alice Space – theme parks, museums and edutainment facilities get an affordable, long-term, turn-key solution that can be monetized while delivering a unique experience anyone from 9 to 99 will never forget.”
Their full-service package includes all the hardware and software needed to transport users into (virtual space) from Noitom’s proprietary high fidelity hybrid optical inertial tracking, VR backpacks and goggles for up to six players.
The unique selling point according to Noitom is that the package includes content, which is updated twice a year in collaboration with NASA, which allows them to deliver experiences that are not only entertaining, but also accurate and educational.
Their Earthlight: Lunar Mission Experience was demoed at Tokyo Game Show 2017 and attracted the attention of none other than Oculus VR founder Palmer Luckey, who was spotted trying it out.
Billed as humanity’s first step on the mission to explore and settle other worlds, Earthlight is the first of a planned six interactive Mixed Reality experiences that will take players from Earth’s own familiar moon to the far reaches of our solar system, exploring Europa, the icy moon orbiting Jupiter.
The experience accommodates up to six simultaneous players, conceived around a theme park centric operational model that allows for uninterrupted, continuous play with up to three sessions per hour. So there’s plenty of opportunity for users to have a taste of space exploration while the likes of Elon Musk and Richard Branson don’t quite crack the problem of making space exploration accessible to common folk. And of course, I personally can’t resist their excellent choice of name, so do beam me up, Scotty!
For companies looking to get into VR/AR/MR our Virtual Reality Consultancy services offer guidance on how these technologies can enhance and support your brand strategy.
Alice Bonasio is a VR Consultant and Tech Trends’ Editor in Chief. She also regularly writes for Fast Company, Ars Technica, Quartz, Wired and others. Connect with her on LinkedIn and follow @alicebonasio and @techtrends_tech on Twitter.