I’m a Lyft Driver. My Passengers Act Like I’m Part of the App

I’m a Lyft Driver. My Passengers Act Like I’m Part of the App

In the future, ride-hailing passengers may conjure autonomous vehicles to their doorsteps with a few taps in an app.I’m replaced by an illusory me—the generic, invisible driver whom many Lyft passengers seem to have in mind.Passengers and drivers are two strangers in a moving vehicle.

I Want My Daughter to Live in a Better Metaverse

I Want My Daughter to Live in a Better Metaverse

While I appreciate the ability to shield my teenager from unseemly content, I also understand the importance of having meaningful conversations about why certain words and actions can harm others.It’s not difficult to imagine nefarious actors injecting extremist or toxic content into metaverse experiences directly.

So … What If Aliens’ Quantum Computers Explain Dark Energy?

So … What If Aliens’ Quantum Computers Explain Dark Energy?

Let’s assume that, just like us, plenty of alien civilizations will want the best possible computers for some purpose or other.That’s one reason we guess that discerning aliens would seek the power of quantum computers to run their virtual worlds.

Facebook Finally Explains Its Mysterious Wrist Wearable

Facebook Finally Explains Its Mysterious Wrist Wearable

Bosworth, who leads Facebook’s augmented and virtual reality research labs, had just shared a blog post outlining the company’s 10-year vision for the future of human-computer interaction.So Facebook has been using this EMG wearable in its virtual reality lab to see if such a device might enable more precise hand-computer interactions.

Netflix’s Marriage or Mortgage Is Maddening

Netflix’s Marriage or Mortgage Is Maddening

Despite being presented with an affordable dream home, the couple picks a splashy wedding instead, spending more than $6,000 on the dress and commissioning a custom ranch-dressing fountain for guests.

Strap on a HoloLens and Step Into the AR Conference Room

Strap on a HoloLens and Step Into the AR Conference Room

The second version is sold to enterprise customers—entities ranging from Airbus to automakers to the US Army (which has been a source of some controversy ).If mixed-reality headsets are ever going to be used more widely, a couple of things are going to have to happen: They’ll need killer apps, and the hardware needs to be something that people will actually want to wear on their faces.

Billionaires See VR as a Way to Avoid Radical Social Change

Billionaires See VR as a Way to Avoid Radical Social Change

Silicon Valley sees the creation of virtual worlds as the ultimate free-market solution to a political problem.To play Alyx, those headsets need to be wired to a high-end gaming PC.

The No-Good Very Nasty Remastering of The Lord of the Rings

The No-Good Very Nasty Remastering of The Lord of the Rings

It’s practically a moral obligation, a question of clarity, of being clear, and if you can clarify Legolas by pumping an extra 10 million pixels into his perfect Elven pores, which comes out to something like 100 billion photons, all twinkling immortally through the cosmic sweep of spacetime, why then, shouldn’t you.

'Fake Famous' Review: A Fun Window Into Instagram Influencers

'Fake Famous' Review: A Fun Window Into Instagram Influencers

But his debut film, Fake Famous (on HBO, starting February 2), brings slightly more apprehension—specifically to Instagram, the photo darling of social media.

The Video Games WIRED Loved Most in 2020

The Video Games WIRED Loved Most in 2020

We want to dissociate on the couch with a free-to-play mobile game .Courtesy of Supergiant GamesI was a little late to the Hades appreciation train, but after buying it in November, I just can’t stop playing.

A Letter to My Pandemic Baby

A Letter to My Pandemic Baby

As World War II may seem to baby boomers and 9/11 to Gen Z, children born during and after 2020 may view memories of the pandemic, the smoke-choked orange skies over Australia and the American West, protests in the streets, an endless election, and a hologram of a deceased father wishing his daughter a happy birthday as a bizarre fairytale.

VR Meetings Are Weird, but They Beat Our Current Reality

VR Meetings Are Weird, but They Beat Our Current Reality

It's called Arthur, and part of the pitch is that it’s going to catapult VR for work into the mainstream, that meetings and collaboration sessions and deskside briefings will become … headset briefings.

Another Victim of Global Warming: The Great British Bake Off

Another Victim of Global Warming: The Great British Bake Off

When the first season aired in 2010, its creators probably didn’t expect it would turn into a decade-long cultural phenomenon, let alone imagine the trouble posed by rising temperatures.The Great British Baking Show has encountered many temperature-related disasters in a decade-long run.

How Video Game Historians Resurrected Sega's Lost VR Headset

How Video Game Historians Resurrected Sega's Lost VR Headset

Like digital-age necromancers, Video Game History Foundation director Frank Cifaldi and head of digital conservation Rich Whitehouse resurrected Sega VR, emulating it along with the Sega VR game Nuclear Rush on a modern Vive VR headset.Frank Cifaldi, Video Game History Foundation.

There's No Turning Back on AI in the Military

There's No Turning Back on AI in the Military

The Air Force and Space Force had their own “move 37” moment last month during the first AI-enabled shoot-down of a cruise missile at blistering machine speeds.

Now Is a Great Time to Try These 5 Menstrual Products

Now Is a Great Time to Try These 5 Menstrual Products

They mostly feel just like any other pair of underwear.Even when I used the heaviest protection, I didn't feel like I was wearing thick underwear or pull-up diapers (or even a pad for that matter).

How VR—and Marvel Superheroes—Might Elicit Empathy

How VR—and Marvel Superheroes—Might Elicit Empathy

After watching up close as a woman is sexually harassed in her place of work, you might gain more understanding of the power imbalance between genders.The goal of Messy Truth is to immerse viewers in situations where they normally would not find themselves because of their gender, their race, or where they live.

RIP, Laika: Space Dogs Will Break Your Heart

RIP, Laika: Space Dogs Will Break Your Heart

The film doesn’t have footage of Laika suffering in space (thank God) but it does have plenty of clips of scientists putting Laika and a few other research dogs through a barrage of exercises—they spin in a centrifuge, dazed—and subjecting them to invasive, gruesome surgeries in order to rig them up with the necessary sensors to see how long they’d last alone above the planet’s atmosphere.

I Was a Floating Head at an NBA Game. It Gets Weirder

I Was a Floating Head at an NBA Game. It Gets Weirder

The downside is that it looks like the basketball game is being haunted by spectral, legless beings from another realm, or Oz. Watching another NBA game a few weeks ago, I wondered what the players thought of the virtual fans.

Pokemon Go and Sleep No More Creators Are Teaming Up on AR

Pokemon Go and Sleep No More Creators Are Teaming Up on AR

The kind that Punchdrunk, the theater company behind immersive shows like Sleep No More, knows better than anyone.Now Punchdrunk and Niantic, the developer of Pokémon Go and Harry Potter: Wizards Unite , are announcing a collaboration that will span multiple projects.

There Are Rumors Kingdom Hearts Is Getting a Disney+ Show

There Are Rumors Kingdom Hearts Is Getting a Disney+ Show

This week we have tidbits about Kingdom Hearts, Fortnite delays, and Half-Life: Alyx.The latest update to Valve's showcase virtual reality title, Half-Life: Alyx, puts liquid inside the various in-game bottles.

Reality TV Has Never Felt More Untethered From Real Life

Reality TV Has Never Felt More Untethered From Real Life

Producers wanted everyone to feel invested, to ultimately have those separate realities merge—theirs with the viewer's.It’s the need for what was, a reminder of how normal used to feel.

HTC Has 4 New VR Headsets, All of Them Modular

HTC Has 4 New VR Headsets, All of Them Modular

HTC unveiled a new slate of virtual reality headsets today: the Cosmos, Cosmos Play, Cosmos Elite, and Cosmos XR.The four new devices are the successors to last year's PC-driven Vive Cosmos headset, and they share much of the same technology found in the original Cosmos.

Augmented Reality From the Driver's Seat, and More Car News This Week

Augmented Reality From the Driver's Seat, and More Car News This Week

But Lyft and Aptiv say the experiment has helped them discover how people use and react to self-driving vehicles—information both companies may be able to use once the technology is ready to lose that pesky human.

Kobe Bryant, an Unforgiving Innovator of the NBA

Kobe Bryant, an Unforgiving Innovator of the NBA

The former all-star shooting guard of the Los Angeles Lakers was among nine people, including his 13-year-old daughter Gianna, who died in a helicopter crash on Sunday in Calabasas, California.

The Real Genius of Love Island Is Its Money-Making App

The Real Genius of Love Island Is Its Money-Making App

“The Love Island app has found success due to a perfect combination of factors, including an ideal target demographic and the event culture of the show that inspires appointment viewing and voting,” says Rebecca McGrath, senior media analyst at Mintel.

Depth of Field: When Photographs Turn the Real Into the Surreal

Depth of Field: When Photographs Turn the Real Into the Surreal

Still, I find myself drawn to the photo because, just like that mind-expanding spring night in LA, it asks me to suspend reality and step into the surreal.

Facebook's Latest Purchase Gets Inside Users' Heads—Literally

Facebook's Latest Purchase Gets Inside Users' Heads—Literally

The startup it purchased is CTRL-Labs (pronounced “Control” labs), a four-year-old company that uses a mix of machine learning and neuroscience to allow people to manipulate computer interfaces simply by brainpower.“It captures your intention so you can share a photo with a friend using an imperceptible movement or just by, well, intending to,” says Facebook’s VP of AR/VR Andrew Bosworth in a statement about the company’s new toy.

Adam Savage’s New VR App Lets You Visit Maker Workshops

Adam Savage’s New VR App Lets You Visit Maker Workshops

It’s a partnership between Oculus and Adam Savage’s Tested, an online platform for showcasing the work of Savage and other creative makers and their workshops.In each video, the maker guides the viewer through their creative process.

Snap Bets Its Future on a Stylish New Pair of Spectacles

Snap Bets Its Future on a Stylish New Pair of Spectacles

Snap Bets Its Future on a Stylish New Pair of Spectacles.For Snap, the maker of the ephemeral messaging app Snapchat, it's preparing by making a new pair of sunglasses: Spectacles 3.This isn’t Snap’s first rodeo.