Plex brings its virtual reality movie app to Gear VR and Oculus

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Earlier this year, Plex jumped into VR with a Google Daydream app that puts you and up to four of your buddies into a virtual movie screening room. Now the media server company is bringing Plex VR to two more platforms: Gear VR and Oculus.
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Apple’s iPhone-Powered Virtual Reality Headset Is Still in the Works

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Apple is continuing to work on a virtual reality headset that would be powered by an iPhone, if a recent continuation patent is any indication. The continuation patent, which was published today by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, doubles-down on the idea of a headset accessory that would use an inserted iPhone as its […]
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Jay and Silent Bob are coming to virtual reality, whether you’re ready or not

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Filmmaker Kevin Smith first broke into the film industry thanks to his no-budget, 1994 indie comedy Clerks, and now that movie’s two most memorable characters will be coming to virtual reality. Jay and Silent Bob VR will be a live-action comedy series that will be written and directed by Smith, shot from the point of view of his Silent Bob character as Jason Mewes’ Jay “leads the way through a string of idiotic adventures.”

It’s just one of several VR projects in development that were announced today by STX Entertainment’s Surreal division, which handles VR and immersive entertainment production for the company. Among the other titles are an untitled live-action series from John Wick writer Derek Kolstad, about a government agent sent to…

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Screw borders, Bitnation lets you create blockchain-powered virtual nations

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Governments around the world are overseeing a surge in bureaucracy, and increasing intrusion into people’s personal lives, running the ever-increasing risk of tyranny among the people. The world may be divided by tectonic shifts, but what if there was a solution to solve crumbling nation states and the global challenges politicians seem incapable of fixing? What if it was possible to live in a borderless world where increased personal freedom was a given right? Creating a new world Bitnation, a proof-of-concept Decentralized Borderless Voluntary Nation (DBVN), is an open source movement that is providing a platform for people to become…

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How Virtual Care Can Address Gaps in Opioid Treatment

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The following is a guest contributed post by Lee Horner, Synzi CEO

The opioid crisis has been widely documented and discussed over the past few years as its impacts continue to intensify across the country. The CDC has shared frightening statistics related to the increase in opioid-related deaths: for example, the number of overdose deaths involving opioids was five times higher in 2016 vs. 1999. Two-thirds of all 63,600 overdose deaths in the US in 2016 involved an opioid, averaging 115 opioid overdose deaths each day. According to an AHRQ brief, opioid-related cases are flooding emergency rooms and hospitals across the country. The rate of opioid-related emergency department (ED) visits increased 99.4 percent between 2005 and 2014, and the rate of opioid-related inpatient stays increased 64.1 percent during this period. The Council of Economic Advisers has estimated that the epidemic may cost more than $ 500 billion in annual healthcare, lost productivity, addiction treatment, and criminal justice costs.

Engaging Patients at the Initial Point of Care

Many communities affected by the opioid epidemic are struggling to provide specialized comprehensive resources to treat addiction. Insufficient numbers of specialists located close to a community can mean that individuals might not have access to proper diagnoses and treatments near their homes. These patients may need to travel great distances — requiring significant driving time and expenses — to reach a facility with specialists who have the expertise needed for opioid-related cases. In these instances, virtual care technology can provide crucial support throughout the treatment and recovery process. At the initial point of care, such as in the ED for example, virtual care technology can give the ED staff immediate access to remote specialists who can conduct virtual consults and provide patients diagnoses and decisions about appropriate next steps during the initial phase of therapy. Virtual consults can also help minimize the wait time associated with seeing a provider and receiving needed treatment.

In addition, virtual care technology can help patients who may initially hesitate to seek help at local clinics. Some individuals may worry about being seen entering “known” treatment clinics and may fear negative impact to their reputation or professional standing within the local community if they are recognized. At related points of care, such as a primary care physician’s office, virtual care technology can connect patients with appropriate off-site specialists, regardless of the distance between healthcare settings. Providing initial virtual consults and ongoing virtual visits at traditional points of everyday care can help patients receive timely and quality care in the settings they are more used to accessing other forms of healthcare.

Supporting Ongoing Recovery and Treatment

Ongoing care is critical to helping reduce relapse rates. If follow-up treatment is inconvenient and/or inaccessible, patients may skip the appointments needed to ensure adherence to the treatment and therapy. Virtual care technology can be leveraged to turn the patient’s home, for example, into a follow-up point of care, allowing for easy and convenient engagement in the recovery plan from the safety and security of the patient’s own home. Frequent touchpoints serve as important aspects of the treatment plan, as they provide support for individuals who want to recover but cannot expend the time nor costs associated with driving to/from (or staying at) hospitals or treatment centers. By providing comprehensive counseling services to patients in recovery via virtual visits, healthcare organizations can connect these patients to the help they need on an ongoing basis.

Overcoming Limited Access to Care in Rural Areas

Rural areas, which have long struggled with healthcare access, have been hit hard by the opioid epidemic and, as a result, have been grappling with the challenges of providing comprehensive care to the local population. Many rural communities rely heavily on manual labor jobs that can cause injuries and/or chronic pain —which all too frequently lead to an opioid prescription, opioid reliance, and then opioid abuse and addiction. Accessing initial treatment and ongoing therapy is particularly challenging for rural populations as the number of local clinics and specialists providing addiction treatment and therapy often fall short of the demand.

Offsite specialists value virtual care tools as they let them see, hear, and observe patients in real time in order to make prompt decisions throughout the continuum of care. Rural residents value the access to available, convenient, and comprehensive care, whether they are inpatient or outpatient. In this way, virtual care technology can provide rural patients with access to specialists who can prescribe and manage the treatment needed to deal with opioid addiction. This technology can support the recovery and treatment process at any point of care, and regardless of the Wi-Fi or cellular connection available.

Improving Access and Engagement via Virtual Care

Virtual care technology can help clinics and hospitals fill the gaps in resources to deliver comprehensive care amidst the opioid epidemic. These platforms can also support the collaboration and continuation of care amongst local providers and offsite specialists, turning any setting into a point of care for opioid-related conditions. Specialist reach and resonance can extend beyond the traditional four walls of a clinic into a community hospital ER, a local provider’s office, and ultimately, the most convenient and comfortable point of care – the patient’s own home. By effectively engaging patients throughout the treatment plan and providing convenient access to ongoing addiction counseling services, virtual care technology can be a critical piece of the puzzle to help keep patients better engaged in the recovery and treatment process to better combat the opioid epidemic.

 

 

About the Author: Lee Horner, CEO, is responsible for corporate strategy and development at Synzi, with an emphasis on revenue growth, product direction and customer satisfaction.  Recognized as an innovator in technology and healthcare, Lee is focused on using technology to advance the timing and quality of care delivery.  His career includes over 25 years of enterprise operating experience, with a proven track record in creating and operating successful organizations that develop new technologies designed to transform the healthcare IT industry.

Prior to launching Synzi, Lee was the President of Stratus Video Telehealth and successfully launched several innovative telehealth solutions into the marketplace. His management experience also includes his serving as President of CareCloud software, a leader in the EHR marketplace, and Senior Vice President of Sage Healthcare.  Under his direction at Sage, Lee led the organization to triple digit growth and the sale of the company to Vista Private Equity. To learn more, visit synzi.com.

The post How Virtual Care Can Address Gaps in Opioid Treatment appeared first on Mobile Marketing Watch.


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Benefits Of Using Virtual Reality In The Classroom

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Just a few years ago, virtual reality seemed to be a sci-fi concept for most people. Currently, virtual reality is playing an increasing role in reshaping such industries as medicine and real estate and educators started using VR in academic settings. A lot of people now believe that this technology is the future of education and that students will benefit from VR-enabled textbooks and virtual classrooms.

This article explores the impact of virtual reality on students and educators. You will learn about typical advantages of using virtual reality in the classroom.

VR Can Stop Classroom Smartphone Distraction

According to the study, results of which were published in the Journal of Medical Education, students spent a fifth of their time in the classroom using their mobile devices for the activities not relevant to their school work.

The research findings showed that the students checked their smartphones 11.43 times on average during their lessons. If these smartphones were used for VR technology, the problem could potentially be solved. Students would not be able to waste their time on smartphones because they would use their devices to engage with VR software.

Eliminates Language Barriers

Language differences can be challenging in today’s multicultural societies. If students want to study in a foreign country, they need to achieve fluency in a foreign language to be able to understand the material if they are taught in another language. With virtual reality, language translation can be built into the software and there will be no language barrier that can prevent students from achieving their educational goals. VR visualizations can be experienced in any language.

Outstanding Visualizations

VR video simulations allow students to explore different realities and have an alternative learning experience that is impossible in the traditional classroom. Wearing VR headset, students can experience high-quality educational visualizations that have a positive impact on the whole learning process. VR can help students easily understand complex concepts, theories, and subjects. they are able to digest and retain complex information at a much higher rate.

An average person can remember only 20% of information that they hear and 30% of information if they see it. But if they get this information through personal experience, they remember up to 90% of it. VR technology creates an immersive experience that helps students learn effectively.

Research has proven that immersion of students in the virtual world enables them to learn better. Such learning activities don’t feel like work and students enjoy the learning process that increases their motivation.

Social Integration of Students

Students achieve better results in a positive learning environment when they can connect with their peers. Virtual reality can enhance social integration of students with different learning needs and styles.

Students who commonly struggled to become a part of a group were accepted by their peers because they had strong technology skills. These are the findings of Dr. Connor Galvin who evaluated virtual reality learning program that involved 20 schools. This technology can ensure positive outcomes for children experiencing problems at home, with learning difficulties or from ethnical minorities.

Virtual reality changes the way we learn, teach, and communicate. The learners are engaged during the lessons because there are no outside distractions as this technology is immersive in nature, inspires creative learning, and promotes curiosity.

Now we are witnessing as more and more progressive schools all around the world start using the VR technology within their classrooms and curriculum. With VR, teachers can teach different subjects in new and exciting ways, making learning process fun.

Virtual reality has the potential to transform education. It offers endless possibilities for higher education institutions as well. It can be a powerful tool in supporting STEM education.

VR is used in architectural design and allows students to view their own designs in real time. It is also a great learning tool for medical students who can use it to simulate real-time surgeries. Universities can use this technology to create virtual tours for recruiting students.

The use of virtual reality in higher education is likely to increase over the next few years. Virtual reality is unlikely to replace old-school face-to-face teaching methods, but this technology will continue to be used to enhance learning experiences for students.

The post Benefits Of Using Virtual Reality In The Classroom appeared first on ReadWrite.

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Today in Apple history: eWorld closes its virtual doors

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March 9, 1996: Apple confirms that it will shut down its eWorld online service at the end of the month. Part messaging service, part news aggregator — and all with Apple’s customary premium prices — the short-lived eWorld proved ahead of its time. Apple tells eWorld subscribers they can switch to America Online instead. Apple […]

(via Cult of Mac – Tech and culture through an Apple lens)

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Motorola stepping into VR, Virtual Viewer Moto Mod surfaces

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Motorola is apparently stepping into the VR space as the company is working on its Virtual Viewer moto mod. Thanks to popular leakster Evan Blass, we now have our first look at the Mod. Motorola’s Mod range currently includes a Projector, Polaroid printer, Battery Packs, Gamepads, and more. However, not much is known about the VR except for the design and box that it comes in with. From the design angle, you will have to connect your Moto Z phone inside of the handset for VR experience. We also don’t have the details about its working. The Motorola VR headset closely resembles Google’s Daydream View headset. [HTML1] Unlike the Daydream headset which can be used with any compatible phone, Moto’s Virtual Viewer is strictly limited to Moto Z series phones. Since there is no cutout for the rear camera in the VR headset, it is possible that Motorola might add augmented reality feature on top of the regular VR content. Since this is an early leak, we don’t have the pricing or launch date. Source
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5 virtual reality trends to watch out for in 2018

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One of my predictions for 2018 is that virtual reality (VR) will become more mainstream. When you look at the growth trajectory of the VR industry over the past few years, it is clear that only great things lie ahead. For one, just a few years ago (in 2014), there were about 200 thousand active virtual reality users. This increased to 90 million active users in 2017, and It is projected to increase to 171 million users in 2018 (almost double that of 2017). Here’s a growth chart courtesy of Statista: The growth the VR industry has experienced as shown…

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I built a fish out of Lego, and now it lives in a virtual fish tank

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Denmark has the best Lego things. The company opened its Lego House in the country this past year, and it sounds like an absolute dream. It’s filled with unique Lego concepts, like the Fish Designer, which lets visitors build fish out of Lego bricks, scan them, and then watch them live virtually in the space’s digital aquarium. Lego brought the experience stateside for the first time at SXSW this week, where I tested it out and made a fish. I discovered during this process that I don’t have much of an imagination, and that making a fish is harder than it looks, so good for these kids and their wild thoughts.

Here’s my creation. It doesn’t have a name, although I’ve gendered it, and it’s a boy:

I chose various colors and…

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