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Facebook Open Source Programming IT Technology

Facebook Announces 'Surround 360' Open Source VR Camera (popsci.com) 32

Facebook is getting even more serious about 360-degree videos and content. At its developer conference, the social juggernaut announced the Surround 360, a 17-lens 3D VR camera. It's not available commercially yet. but the company has opened the design for anyone to modify. All the parts can be bought later this summer for about $30,000. Popular Science reports: The hardware is also coupled with custom software that automatically stitches together the immense amount of high-resolution video the camera records, and permits wireless control of the camera. "We care a lot about just kickstarting and inspiring the ecosystem as much as we can," said Chris Cox, chief product officer at Facebook. While the company isn't manufacturing or selling the cameras, Cox says the team sees it as a high-end "reference camera" that the rest of the community could base their designs on. According to Cox, making VR video breaks down into three steps: capture, processing, and delivery. Facebook already has a clear advantage in the delivery of this content, so now the plan is to break down the barriers for capture and processing.Also at the conference, Facebook announced it was opening up Live Video feature to developers. This would allow developers to integrate live streaming into third-party apps and also stream from any device.
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Facebook Announces 'Surround 360' Open Source VR Camera

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  • It can't be turned off and streams everything to facebook's servers. Also, they own the video not you.

  • In Soviet Amerika, Facebook looks at YOU!

  • $30k is way too much for what it is, considering how much competition there is in this area. There are solutions coming to market soon (or already available) for far less. First google result: panono [panono.com] for 1500Euros, which uses 36 cameras. There are many others.

    • by caferace ( 442 )
      The panono looks to be a still camera.
    • by zeoslap ( 190553 )

      The competing camera from Nokia, the Ozo is twice as much, 60k.

    • $30k is way too much for what it is, considering how much competition there is in this area. There are solutions coming to market soon (or already available) for far less. First google result: panono [panono.com] for 1500Euros, which uses 36 cameras. There are many others.

      But they also do far less. Right there you're comparing a still camera to a video camera. If you compare apples to oranges then sure you can make anything look like poor value but where are you getting a VR camera that can do 60fps and 8k resolution per eye for significantly less?

  • information be it text, audio, video , etc, are not worth much by themselves.
    everyone of us have feeds of them constantly bombarding our brains naturally. to be valuable information need to be edited and focused.

    a movie is worth watching only when all the tedious stuff is edited out. truly honest reality show would be boring(without effort). novel that records everything would not be a novel, authors focus(even when they do stream of consciousness). poem or symphony wont be worth much without structure even when some of them impossibly claim to be without structure. etc.

    eyes( and ears, other senses, etc ) have evolved to precisely to enable us to extract useful information by focusing within a limited field.

    studies have shown very act of editing and structuring information make it useful. for instance taking actual notes of a lecture, help us remember it(even if we do not read notes again ), more than watching a video of the lecture many times.

    while expansion of technology is good and should not be curbed, we must be aware that creating streams of information without conscious editing, without focus, will only create ever more worthless useless information.

     

  • > "17-lens 3D VR camera"

    Nonononono. It's a 360 degree VR camera. It is *not* also 3d. I don't think anyone has one of those yet, right? It would be difficult to get both omnidirectional *AND* binocular(i.e. 3D) in the same design.

    I wonder if something like the Lytro tech would help with that...

  • That is hardly an "open source" camera.

    All they have done on the hardware side is stick a bunch of point grey camera units in a circular holder.
    Of course it is going to be expensive!

    Point grey cameras are indeed convenient for testing, but are not suitable for this at all.
    A $15 image sensor results in a ~$300 pointgrey camera (not including a lens, which is needed either way).

    It could be made a LOT more inexpensive by actually designing the hardware like they implied.

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