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Google’s built technology that makes VR headsets “transparent”

Okay, maybe not to someone sitting in a room watching you prance around with an HTC Vive or Oculus Rift on your head–which would make it hard for them to see your expression. But if someone was looking at a video showing you inside a VR experience, they could see your face, including your silly … Continue reading “Google’s built technology that makes VR headsets “transparent””

Okay, maybe not to someone sitting in a room watching you prance around with an HTC Vive or Oculus Rift on your head–which would make it hard for them to see your expression. But if someone was looking at a video showing you inside a VR experience, they could see your face, including your silly grins. In a blog post this afternoon, Google VR head Clay Bavor wrote that thanks to a “combination of machine learning, 3D computer vision, and advanced rendering techniques, we’re now able to ‘remove’ headsets and show a person’s identity, focus and full face.”

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The VR headset is algorithmically removed by making a dynamic 3D model of a person’s face, Bavor wrote, which captures variations in facial expressions, as well as glances in multiple directions. “This model allows us to mimic where the person is looking, even though it’s hidden under the headset,” he said. Then they employ a modified Vive headset to capture someone’s eye gaze inside the headset, and then finally “create the illusion of the person’s face by aligning and blending the 3D face model with a camera’s video stream. A translucent ‘scuba mask’ look helps avoid an ‘uncanny valley’ effect.”

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About the author

Daniel Terdiman is a San Francisco-based technology journalist with nearly 20 years of experience. A veteran of CNET and VentureBeat, Daniel has also written for Wired, The New York Times, Time, and many other publications

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