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Out of the Blue

Thanks for the feedback on the headset question. Many of you addressed my specific needs, so I have some good leads to go on. I also see that the discussion was helpful to others with a similar quandary, so I'm extra glad I asked here.

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51 Replies. 3 pages. Viewing page 1.
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51. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 26, 2014, 09:18 Verno
 
xXBatmanXx wrote on Mar 25, 2014, 18:51:
Dang, I have all the wired solutions, but was hoping for wireless that some here liked and would rave about.

If all you care about is listening to TV show dialogue or something then you can probably get by with some wireless Sennheisers. Get some RF based ones if you don't think there will be a lot of interference. Just be aware that crackling and popping can be issue with these things, particularly if you move around a bit while listening. I wouldn't count on good sound quality either, I have a pair I use for the treadmill and they're adequate but not much else.

Stay away from anything super cheap and anything IR based.
 
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50. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 26, 2014, 08:53 Mr. Tact
 
Beamer wrote on Mar 25, 2014, 18:50:
mch wrote on Mar 25, 2014, 18:42:
So...does this mean Mark Zuckerberg is John Carmack's boss?

Carmack probably just made somewhere between $50mm and $200mm. Is anyone his boss?

Carmack has been his own boss for a LONG time now...
 
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49. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 26, 2014, 08:47 nin
 
Brataccas wrote on Mar 25, 2014, 19:52:
nin wrote on Mar 25, 2014, 19:31:
Well, in all fairness, they did have a working product. I don't think it was worth 2 billion, but they did a lot more than a lot of kickstarters.


Yeah, I was just being cheeky. But the fact that they paid that much for a company that hasn't produced a successful commercial product yet makes me go "hmmm". It's like they have Google Glass envy...

Yeah, I agree. I don't see how they'll ever recoup what they paid...

 
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48. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 20:31 Cutter
 
Tom wrote on Mar 25, 2014, 20:19:
Oh ok then, so VR is no more sophisticated than a TV or a refrigerator. Nevermind that these companies can't even get TVs right most of the time.

What did FB buy? They bought the people with the energy and potential to make something huge. Again, it comes down to Luckey Palmer and the team that formed around him.

And how do you figure wearing a TV on your face will be huge? Christ, all of a year ago they were still touting how 3D was here to stay and we saw how that worked out. And those were just some stupid glasses you had to wear. You're talking about several thousand people - 9,522 to be precise - that raised 2.5 million over their initial asking of 250k. Several thousand people does not a revolution make.
 
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47. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 20:30 Beamer
 
Tom wrote on Mar 25, 2014, 20:19:
Oh ok then, so VR is no more sophisticated than a TV or a refrigerator. Nevermind that these companies can't even get TVs right most of the time.

What did FB buy? They bought the people with the energy and potential to make something huge. Again, it comes down to Luckey Palmer and the team that formed around him.

OR doesn't have that many employees, and what employees it does have all had equity. If they had even 0.5% they just made a million bucks. And the ones with the energy and potential had much more than 0.5%.
 
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46. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 20:24 Cutter
 
Thanks Beamer. You make some really excellent points on this matter. Still, I can't help thinking there has to be an angle to all of this somewhere that no one else is seeing yet. Obviously companies make bad decisions from time to time but this is just so out in left field. As someone else pointed out with Whatsapp, FB just acquired several million more people they can monetize with their partners. But as you've said, not so with the OR.

Not now, or likely ever at this point. So maybe Bobob has the right of it. Maybe some of their patents look pretty sweet in the long term. Otherwise it's like you said, Zuck just thinks this is keen and wants it. It seems like their shareholders are pretty worried about this too. I'd wager Zuck will be pushed out as CEO before too long.
 
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45. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 20:19 Tom
 
Oh ok then, so VR is no more sophisticated than a TV or a refrigerator. Nevermind that these companies can't even get TVs right most of the time.

What did FB buy? They bought the people with the energy and potential to make something huge. Again, it comes down to Luckey Palmer and the team that formed around him.
 
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44. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 20:10 Beamer
 
Tom wrote on Mar 25, 2014, 20:04:
A lot of very short-sighted thinking here. How many times has someone earned a fortune doing something lame (and usually at least moderately evil) and then looked for something fun to do with the billions in profit?

But how does FB make money off of OR?
They have no experience in hardware manufacturing, and neither does OR so they didn't really buy that.
They have no experience in screen manufacturing, and neither does OR so they didn't really buy that.

They bought something that essentially any tech company can reproduce easily, outside of the brand but the brand is only big to a small niche. If you put it in Best Buy next to a Samsung VR set nearly all consumers will buy the Samsung one.

What does OR do that makes them special?
1) They are writing the software/drivers for their headsets, but I'd be shocked if, after VR takes off, this holds true. They're basically making GLide. Great. Someone will make OpenGL or DirectX and allow devs to code to a standard that supports all VR sets. This is a huge dead end
2) They are willing to start the industry. Samsung and Sony didn't care, because it was so small and there was no demand. Sony has already been awakened, though we'll see if this is just lip service or a true attempt. If OR starts making money, you'd better believe Samsung will jump into it. And, after a few years, Planar and VideoSonic and Asus and ASOC will jump in on it and, much like how Sony and Samsung no longer make monitors, they'll leave VR sets because there will no longer be money to be made
 
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http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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43. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 20:07 Cutter
 
BobBob wrote on Mar 25, 2014, 19:56:
What patents are involved in the purchase?

Excellent question! And probably the one the purchase hinged on more than anything else. I didn't even stop to consider that.

Still....enh...I can't see it. Maybe the groundwork for some very long term plans 20 years from now? But by that point I can't see anyone wanting to wear anything as cumbersome as that. More like the device Jim Carrey's Riddler invented in that Batman movie where it beams shit straight into your brain. Then again, like the Batman movie, that means they can snoop out everything in your brain too!
 
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42. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 20:06 Beamer
 
Cutter wrote on Mar 25, 2014, 19:59:
Seriously Beamer, you're our resident biz guy. I'm not being a dick about this, explain or lay our some scenarios here that show the potential upside that justifies this acquisition because I sure as shit don't see any - any positive ones at any rate.

Edit: Oh yeah, just saw that Wall St. isn't happy about this and FB lost almost 2 billion off it's valuation today.

I see no upside.
I expect VR sets, if they truly become a thing, to be like monitors, in that the software is standardized and the product commoditized. People buy based on weight and image quality, not brand and marketing.

If Facebook wants to start a VR world, or VR learning, or whatever, it makes some sense for them to control hardware at first, if it needs to be jumpstarted, but Oculus Rift seemed to be doing a fine job of that on their own. And, if they did a good enough job, Samsung, Sony and LG would all jump in, with larger R&D budgets, significantly larger marketing budgets, and the revenue streams that allow them to competitively price. Kind of like how Diamond and Creative mostly created the mp3 player market only to be forced out of it, OR basically faced the exact same future, in my opinion.

And still do. FB has next to no way to make $2b back on the hardware. And I don't think they have any software in the wing ready to go, or even 5 years out. And I don't think they needed to buy this to put their backing and capital behind it to get a properly installed userbase.

I honestly see no reason for this other than FB having huge stacks of cash and Zuckerberg thinking it's a really cool technology. But a public company can't purchase on a whim like that.
 
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http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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41. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 20:04 Tom
 
A lot of very short-sighted thinking here. How many times has someone earned a fortune doing something lame (and usually at least moderately evil) and then looked for something fun to do with the billions in profit?

I'm as dismayed as anyone at this turn of events but even I have to acknowledge the possibility that Luckey Palmer will use the $$$ for good and Zuckerberg and the rest of the monstrosity that is Facebook will let him do it without screwing it all up. The possibility exists. Hopefully it's not as unlikely as it seems.

I'd say the biggest question now is ... is Palmer truly committed to his dream? Or will the money ruin him, as it ruins most?

And if Oculus Rift is ruined, at least there will be other players who won't be standing still on this. The likes of Valve and Sony. Now that people have tasted what's possible, someone will make it happen. The technology is there. The demand is there. It may take another couple of years but this is going to happen with or without Oculus Rift.
 
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40. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 19:59 Cutter
 
Seriously Beamer, you're our resident biz guy. I'm not being a dick about this, explain or lay our some scenarios here that show the potential upside that justifies this acquisition because I sure as shit don't see any - any positive ones at any rate.

Edit: Oh yeah, just saw that Wall St. isn't happy about this and FB lost almost 2 billion off it's valuation today.
 
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39. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 19:58 Brataccas
 
Cutter wrote on Mar 25, 2014, 19:46:
Just saw this in a report....

Finally, Oculus said in the next 10 years virtual reality will become "ubiquitous, affordable, and transformative."

Oh really? So it's going to be Snow Crash for everyone in 10 years is it? Hrm, still waiting for my flying car, meals in pill form, and swingin' bachelor pad on the moon.

Zuck is rattling on how this is the future? Ok, a niche market of gaming geeks wearing these are one thing. But the populous at large wielding these monstrosities to social network? Check email? Hang out together and watch movies, sports, etc? Uh huh, yeah. Sure. Take another hit off that pipe Zuck.

Reminds me of being back in college in 1990 when VR and Jaron Lanier were all the rage.
 
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38. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 19:57 Cutter
 
Ok, then what's the upside here? As I asked. Not even counting what they'll have to pay developers - and they will have to pay now - how many headsets will they have to sell to break even? What's the price point they think they'll get to? $300?

And unless we're talking about Snow Crash type VR here why would anyone except a hardcore gamer want it? I could see limited application in military/science/engineering, but again, very niche.

I'm saying that 2 billion on an unproven device is insanity. Shit, this reminds me of all the Dot Com craziness going on. Yeah, some people made out like bandits, but most lost, and very little of it ever materialized into anything worthwhile.

And consider FB's modus operandi. They only make money by monetizing the shit out of everything. So obviously they have no intention of just selling the headsets for people to use without something else in the works that will make them ongoing profit. And that means tracking and advertising. Well shit, people deal with that crap without a cumbersome headset of a few hundred dollars. Hell, just look at how well the Kinect has worked out, lol.
 
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37. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 19:56 BobBob
 
What patents are involved in the purchase?  
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36. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 19:52 Brataccas
 
nin wrote on Mar 25, 2014, 19:31:
Well, in all fairness, they did have a working product. I don't think it was worth 2 billion, but they did a lot more than a lot of kickstarters.


Yeah, I was just being cheeky. But the fact that they paid that much for a company that hasn't produced a successful commercial product yet makes me go "hmmm". It's like they have Google Glass envy...
 
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35. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 19:47 Beamer
 
Cutter wrote on Mar 25, 2014, 19:37:
Well, as I said in the other thread they owe their backers nothing beyond what was promised so as long as they get that, all is well on that front.

But $2B for this and $19B for Whatsapp leads me to believe that the management at FB is utterly insane at this point. It also leads me to believe that FB will crash and burn in the most spectacular manner sooner rather than later. It'll be a textbook study in business school upon how to not count one's chickens before they hatch.

Honestly, does anyone think the OR has a future now? I can see it now....every OR integrated with FB. Every OR owner being tracked in every game and getting FB alerts and ads all the time.

Do they really think this is a device capable of selling over 2 BILLION dollars? How many millions of headsets is that? How much grease going to developers to ensure they develop for the OR?

I really don't think Facebook bought this for integration. I think they bought it for diversity, and because Zuckerberg probably thinks it's cool.

Stop and think for a second about how your theories would play out. How could they integrate it with FB? It's a hardware device only. It doesn't have its own software. There's literally no way to integrate it.
Could Facebook be made in VR? Yes, but no one wants to look at 2D programs in VR, and there's no way to make FB not 2D.

So no, I don't think there's any kind of tracking coming, and I don't think there's any integration coming. This is Facebook trying to diversify.

Probably stupidly, and they've already reduced the value of the company just by being connected. In the short term.
 
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Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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34. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 19:46 jacobvandy
 
Wow. Yeah, I don't want a Rift anymore...  
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33. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 19:46 Cutter
 
Just saw this in a report....

Finally, Oculus said in the next 10 years virtual reality will become "ubiquitous, affordable, and transformative."

Oh really? So it's going to be Snow Crash for everyone in 10 years is it? Hrm, still waiting for my flying car, meals in pill form, and swingin' bachelor pad on the moon.

Zuck is rattling on how this is the future? Ok, a niche market of gaming geeks wearing these are one thing. But the populous at large wielding these monstrosities to social network? Check email? Hang out together and watch movies, sports, etc? Uh huh, yeah. Sure. Take another hit off that pipe Zuck.
 
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32. Re: Out of the Blue Mar 25, 2014, 19:37 Cutter
 
Well, as I said in the other thread they owe their backers nothing beyond what was promised so as long as they get that, all is well on that front.

But $2B for this and $19B for Whatsapp leads me to believe that the management at FB is utterly insane at this point. It also leads me to believe that FB will crash and burn in the most spectacular manner sooner rather than later. It'll be a textbook study in business school upon how to not count one's chickens before they hatch.

Honestly, does anyone think the OR has a future now? I can see it now....every OR integrated with FB. Every OR owner being tracked in every game and getting FB alerts and ads all the time.

Do they really think this is a device capable of selling over 2 BILLION dollars? How many millions of headsets is that? How much grease going to developers to ensure they develop for the OR?
 
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