The yuan universe killer is coming! Xiao Zha offered 4 VR head displays to challenge the visual Turing test

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Source:"Xinzhiyuan" (id:ai_era), editor: La Yan is so sleepy

In the metauniverse, if technology can't keep up, everything else is useless. No, the small tie came with four head mounted models.

When Xiao Zha pulled out four VR model machines in one breath, we knew that he was really playing.

If it was a gimmick to engage in the meta universe before, when Xiao Zha took out these "hard currencies"

We only have to worship.

Mr. Zha's smile from childhood shows that he is full of confidence.

Visual Turing test: four challenges, one by one

It is almost a year since meta changed its name. However, the vision of the meta universe is still on the horizon.

A large part of the reason is that the display, the core of VR head display, is too primitive.

In the past decade, this little thing has made little progress: two screens with low resolution are connected behind the lens, trying to deceive the eyes into seeing a 3D world.

Obviously, we need more new types of display, which can rival human vision.

However, before exploring the next generation of VR head displays, we still need to understand a new word - "visual Turing test".

Although the name looks very new, it is not much different from the Turing test proposed by alanturing in 1950. It is just a change to the field of vision.

That is, it is used to evaluate whether the image displayed in the VR device is "real at a glance" (whether it can be distinguished from the content of the real world).

Specifically, VR devices must meet the following four characteristics to pass the test:

1. achieve a resolution equivalent to retinal vision

2. be able to focus virtual objects naturally

Specifically, the user can freely switch the focus of the object at any distance in the screen and produce the corresponding depth of field effect at the same time.

3. it can compensate the optical distortion caused by the lens

4. support HDR, which covers a wider range of colors and supports higher contrast

Butterscotch: eye sharpness, everyone's eyesight is 1.0

The first to appear is butterscotch's model.

This head showing cow is just a cow. Its imaging quality is close to the near retina quality. High end head displays of this quality can only be made in companies like varjo that focus on VR equipment.

Varjo, a Finnish company, was founded in 2016 by former Nokia and Microsoft executives. The biggest feature of this company is its high definition, which is comparable to the beauty eye.

However, varjo can do it, but meta can't do it now. It can even be said that meta is far from "Xing", far away.

To realize this design, it is equivalent to halving the 110 degree field of view of meta Quest 2. But it will also show Quest 2 head to each eye 1832 ร— The resolution of 1920 pixels is magnified by 2.5 times, so that the wearer's vision is improved to 1.0.

Xiaoza said that butterscotch can provide about 55 pixels in each field of view degree. It is a little lower than the standard retina of 60 pixels and varjo of 64 pixels.

Half Dome: alias "flexible zoom"

The next half dome is another long-term prototype.

The highlight of this head display is that the focal plane can be moved according to the user's implementation. These optics used for zoom were a cumbersome mechanical system at the beginning of 2017, and later switched to the liquid crystal lens series.

According to the internal research of meta, this technology can create a depth illusion in the virtual world that can confuse the false with the true.

In the half dome series, meta first explored a zoom design that uses a mechanically moving display to change the distance between the display and the lens, thereby changing the depth of focus of the image.

After that, the team turned to solid-state electronic systems to make the zoom optical system more compact and reliable.

Starburst: light up the night, 20000nit big killer

The VR head display of starburst is more difficult to implement, even more difficult than the butterscotch mentioned above. However, the harder the landing, the stronger the performance.

The design of this head mounted display is a little cumbersome, even heavy enough to require a handle to support its weight. At the same time, it is equipped with a powerful lamp, which can provide HDR illumination of about 20000nit brightness.

The brightness of the screen is measured in nit. Modern HDR TV can reach thousands of nits, but Quest 2 can only reach 100 nits.

Xiao Zha said that this product is difficult to be practical, and our first generation products certainly can't make this. We regard it as an experimental bed, which can be used for later research and learning.

We do this to find the right way. See which technology paths can really help us make meaningful progress in the field of virtual reality.

Holocake 2:vr "slim" head display

However, the direction of this product is completely different.

Compared with the heaviness of starburst, the purpose of holocake is to make VR head display lighter and thinner.

After all, it's called "cake". It's too thick and greasy.

This head display is the next generation of a device based on holographic optical technology designed in 2020. Holographic optics can bend light so that a flat plate can be used instead of a thick refractive lens.

The finished product may be as thick as ordinary sunglasses. However, meta is still studying how to develop an independent light source to power the lens. It is almost certain that the laser should be used instead of the ordinary OLED.

"We will do a lot of work to achieve practical lasers that meet our specifications. Of course, we must also ensure that the safety, low cost, high efficiency and size can be installed into the VR head display," he said

But to be honest, lasers are really hard to do now.

In order to be light enough at this stage, meta adopts the pancake lens, which can significantly shorten the distance between the display and the lens (in the middle of the figure below).

After all, compared with the holographic lens that has not been skimmed, the Cambria VR head display with pancake structure is almost on the market.

Comparison of three lenses

Holocake 2 is a full-featured PC VR headset device, which is comparable to meta Quest 2 in terms of field of vision, resolution and eye frame, and has a thinner appearance.

The difference is that the holocake 2 requires a wired connection, and there is no integrated computing unit and cooling device.

This is probably the price of frivolity.

Mirror Lake: the ultimate killer of meta

In the final analysis, these prototypes are only for a single test.

The ultimate goal of meta is to integrate various visual elements required to pass the visual Turing test into a lightweight, ultra-thin and low-power VR head display.

To this end, the team designed a prototype called "Mirror Lake", which is based on the architecture of "holocake 2" mentioned earlier, and realizes this "ski like shape" through a holographic lens.

At the same time, it will integrate all the advanced visual technologies of meta in the past 7 years, such as eye tracking, variable focus, etc. In addition, Mirror Lake additionally supports lens accessories.

It is said that "Mirror Lake" also provides new penetration technology and external display, which can show the user's eyes and face to the outside world.

The key to the design of "Mirror Lake" is that holographic projection technology makes each component thin and flat. Not only is the zoom technology quite flat, but all holographic films, distortion correction and eye tracking technologies used in "holocake" are the same. This means that the final product can accommodate more functions and has a smaller body than any existing headset.

Michael abrash, chief scientist of meta Reality Laboratory, said, "Mirror Lake shows what a complete next-generation display system looks like."

Knock on the blackboard!

Michael, the chief scientist, stressed that the "Mirror Lake" is still a conceptual mechanism, and meta has not yet produced a fully functional headset to prove that this architecture is indeed feasible. If such a headset can be successfully manufactured in the future, it will bring revolutionary changes to the VR visual experience.

Among all VR prototypes, "Mirror Lake" is still the farthest from commercialization, so if other display technologies are proved to be more promising, it may be abandoned to support other display technologies.


Do you still remember the mosaic device that Xiao Za tried on some time ago?

In the video, Xiao Zha "spits out fragrance" and "waves his small hand", which is really a Fairy Spirit blowing and magic. With a whiff, a colorful elf jumped into our eyes.

And Xiao Zha was giggling all the way.

Recently, Lynch published 8 CAD files that seem to be schematic drawings of project Cambria on his patreon page.

It shows some interesting features, including a clip on the side of the front dial (which may be used to adjust the lens) (which may be used for oculus link) and a visible cable on the back, which may connect the battery to the front components.

Unfortunately, this "shy beauty" project Cambria still has no product name, specific release window or exact price.

However, Zuckerberg has said that project Cambria will be launched "later this year".

Although we still need to wait for the "beauty" to appear, at least compared with those prototypes that are far away, this VR head display is expected to start soon (regardless of the price).

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