Damon Hernandez has been an interactive 3D developer for the past 15 years, and he’s interested in developing VR applications that solve real world problems within the construction industry. He’s interested in using the web as a distribution platform using open standards because he sees that this will be the most sustainable and robust distribution platform in the long-run. I had a chance to catch up with Damon at the Seattle VR Expo where he gave me a quick tour through the open standards landscape for VR.
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Damon is interested in VR because he sees it as a really powerful communications platform. He cites the saying, “I hear, and I forget; I see, and I remember; I do and I understand.” He sees that VR helps you understand problems within their full context.
Damon has been working at a construction firm named IDEAbuilder for the past 8 years where he’s been able to explore the latest open standards and technologies in delivering 3D content. Rather than looking to the coolest game engine platform, he’s more interested in going with a non-proprietary and completely royalty-free that’s going to both be robust and stand the test of time.
The game engines were also not designed to account for ISO standards. He says, “When you start to get involved with the reality part of virtual reality, you bring in all of the legal aspects of the real world into that.” If your video game goes down, then it may inconvenience someone. However, if you give someone the wrong diagnosis, then it could have fatal consequences where you become liable to pay damages.
Damon believes that the web will continue to serve as a robust distribution platform and that open standards will provide the stability and consistency in the long-run. Some of the open standards for VR and 3D content over the web include VRML, X3D, COLLADA interchange format for geometry. There’s also x3dom for integrated 3D content into web pages, as well as the glTF specification from the Khronos Group that provides compression and efficient transmission of 3D content.
Damon is continuing to develop his content pipeline and delivery over the web as the ecosystem evolves. Even though the web hasn’t fully matured as a distribution mechanism yet, he’s betting that the open web and open standards will eventually provide a robust and solid foundation for VR to be able to solve many real-world problems.
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Theme music: “Fatality” by Tigoolio