Tag Archives: virtual reality

FULL Humber in a Box Demo Video (@SeriousGeoGames)

I anticipated it would be much harder and take much longer for me to make a full video demonstration of Humber in a Box. Actually, once I got the hang of things it was pretty straight forward. I even managed to record audio with my phone and add that to it too.

The video shows the basic functionality of Humber in the Box, demonstrating the graphics, as viewed in an immersive VR environment, and how the CAESAR-Lisflood model behind is calculating the tidal flows. The second part shows the sea level change function, increasing the water level by 1m in line with predictions for 100 years in the future. This is shown to not be as dramatic as other methods of showing the effects of future sea level rises, as it accounts for the flood defences in place (don’t forget, these will be significantly improved and raised also).

Part three gets into the hypothetical, looking at a 10m high tsunami wave travelling down the estuary. It is very dramatic, but really isn’t much of a possibility in the Humber. Finally, the video shows what would happen if all of the planet’s ice instantaneously melted, adding 74m to sea level.

You will, of course, need a Google Cardboard, or a VISR, or similar, to view this video in the way it is intended. Hopefully, before long I will be able to produce a 2D equivalent but I don’t have a version of Humber in a Box to achieve this yet. Hope you enjoy, and I really would appreciate any feedback or comments you might have.

Google Cardboard Demo for Humber in a Box (@SeriousGeoGames)

I’ve been playing around with getting a Humber in a Box demo up on YouTube, intended for view using a Google Cardboard headset. I’ve got a first test after much faffing around.

I used some freeware to record off my desktop, but as the video needs to be high quality (both resolution and framerate), it’s rather limited. After the clip reached 4GB it keeps looping back, so about 2 minutes is my limit. I can get around this by recording lots of clips and stitching them together later.

To view the clip, start this video on your smartphone and place it within the Google Cardboard. Simple really.

The final video will have an audio track with my commentary over it, explaining what the simulation is and what it is showing. Still, it’s much better in person and I hope to bring you some exciting news in that area soon!

Potential of Google Cardboard for GEES and @SeriousGeoGames

I recently got hold of a Google Cardboard. Essentially, it is a piece of folded cardboard, a couple of cheap lenses and an elasticated strap. You fold it into shape – this takes a couple of minutes, it’s dead easy – and voila, it’s built. Next you take your smartphone, download the Google Cardboard App, or other supported App, and then slot your phone into the headset turning it into a very cheap VR headset.


My assembled Google Cardboard (smartphone not included)

I’ve tried a few things – it is really easy and just so very effective. It works a treat. All it does is display two images on your phone and splits them so one goes into your right eye and the other into your left, giving you the illusion of a 3D environment – it is rather different to the 3D you get at the cinema. Using the VR Cinema App you can view 2D videos on your phone, and although it doesn’t make them 3D it does give you an incredible view.

I’ve found that rather than using the Apps, the best features are videos you find on Youtube which have been filmed in the split image format – just maximise them and view them via the Cardboard. I think this is the way we will go with Humber in a Box rather than building a phone App – a video on Youtube would be so much simpler and just as effective.

Humber in a Box 1

The split screen view used to visualise Humber in a Box in 3D

I can see these being the way forward if you want to use VR as a teaching tool. The Oculus isn’t as expensive as most people think but is still >£350 a unit, whilst the Cardboard, or alternatives such as Hull-based VISR, are £10-20. They need a smartphone, but I imagine most students have one, and a lot can be achieved without specialist Apps.