Feeds

Going up: Fancy a virtual flight to 30km above the PLANET?

Space boffin rattles tin for immersive Oculus Rift experience

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Those of you who've always fancied a trip to 30km above the Earth's surface, but have neither the money nor a pair of cojones the size of a plucky Playmonaut's, are directed to this interesting KickStarter campaign in support of a "Virtual Ride to Space".

Dr Aaron Knoll - a "lecturer in the field of plasma propulsion" at Surrey Uni - is attempting to get a 12 GoPro camera cluster off the ground to create an immersive vid viewable on the Oculus Rift.

Diagram of Dr Knoll's payload, with GoPro cameras

On paper, the flight itself is a simple enough proposition, with Dr Knoll's* biggest concern being the recovery of his dozen GoPros. Our experience shows that the chances of 12 action cameras working continuously throughout the flight are slim, and when we put this to the good doc, he replied: "It's funny you should mention the issue of camera redundancy. When we launched the first version of the KickStarter back in February, we had opted for a 24 camera configuration with complete redundancy across all cameras (2 side-by-side cameras would have to fail to lose content).

"However, we received a lot of comments from the community that the redundancy wasn't needed. So, with the new design we don't have any redundancy (12 camera setup). We are using the 3+ camera model, so hopefully the reliability is improved. Also, we're planning a rapid ascent so we only need to capture content on all cameras for 1.5 hours.

"Hopefully we'll identify any potential issues early in testing. We're going to do a full mission dry run prior to launch, and let all of the electronics run in their flight configuration for 5 hours. The cameras will surely have died by then, but we'll see how much simultaneous content we recover so that we can quantify our 'safety margin'."

Once the footage is in the can, Knoll will knuckle down to getting the software side sorted for the Oculus Rift. Anyone who has managed to survive so far without a VR headset will be able to enjoy the ride anyway on a smartphone or PC.

As noted above, the KickStarter campaign is the second attempt to get the project off the ground. Dr Knoll has slashed the price of the software this time round, and for just £4 you can have the PC version, while it's £6 for the Oculus Rift experience, and a tenner for the full-fat phone/PC/headset software suite.

As of this morning, 166 backers had pledged £2,000 towards the £5,000 target. ®

Bootnote

*Yes - cue underwater/volcanic lair mission control centre gags.

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Bond villains lament as Wicked Lasers withdraw death ray
Want to arm that shark? Better get in there quick
Antarctic ice THICKER than first feared – penguin-bot boffins
Robo-sub scans freezing waters, rocks warming models
Your PHONE is slowly KILLING YOU
Doctors find new Digitillnesses - 'text neck' and 'telepressure'
SEX BEAST SEALS may be egging each other on to ATTACK PENGUINS
Boffin: 'I think the behaviour is increasing in frequency'
Reuse the Force, Luke: SpaceX's Elon Musk reveals X-WING designs
And a floating carrier for recyclable rockets
The next big thing in medical science: POO TRANSPLANTS
Your brother's gonna die, kid, unless we can give him your, well ...
NASA launches new climate model at SC14
75 days of supercomputing later ...
Renewable energy 'simply WON'T WORK': Top Google engineers
Windmills, solar, tidal - all a 'false hope', say Stanford PhDs
Britain's HUMAN DNA-strewing Moon mission rakes in £200k
3 days, and Kickstarter moves lander 37% nearer takeoff
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Designing and building an open ITOA architecture
Learn about a new IT data taxonomy defined by the four data sources of IT visibility: wire, machine, agent, and synthetic data sets.
10 threats to successful enterprise endpoint backup
10 threats to a successful backup including issues with BYOD, slow backups and ineffective security.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?