WebVRPresentationImpulse (~15/16 November 2016) date and time

#HASHTAGUNSET on Twitter, identi.ca, Live Cast, TwitterStreamGraphs, Collecta, flickr

Own objectives

  1. share what I learned during the W3C WebVR workshop
  2. showcase what webVR can do today and might do tomorrow
  3. clarify my own perspective

Slides of my presentation

Attended activities


  • my qualifications for this presentation (timeline for 2016)
    • lead dev for a winning webVR project during the hackathon in January
    • given dozen of free and paid workshops on webVR this year
    • earned money successfully delivering a webVR experience to UCB in September
    • participated to the W3C WebVR workshop in San Jose in October
    • invited by Mozilla for All Hands in Hawaii in early December
  • the objective of webVR
    • infrastructure for the metaverse
    • widest reach (could re-use the 2 curves cf JSLab presentation)
      • from modern phones with 17e cardboard at Wibra
      • ... to HTC Vive or Oculus Touch with custom hardware e.g. IoT
    • distributed permissionless creation and distribution
      • anybody can spawn a web server right now and share a webVR URL to anybody else
        • how many of you have a personal webpage? not that many? do you have a Facebook account? then yes you do have a web page
          • the web is the current infrastructure for sharing information, even if camouflaged as walled garden (cf plenty of mobile apps using Electron, Cordova, etc which are basically simplified web browsers and not just for small apps, think Facebook again, Twitter, etc)
    • personal objective
      • PIMVR, exploring and sharing an immersive interactive visualization of my thoughts
  • advantages
    • no installation required (kinda...)
      • to consume
      • to build
        • you say install this and update that and ...
          • by the time you finished your explanations I gave the URL and students of any age and knowledge (cf CoderDojo Madrid) are in VR in the experience THEY made
      • to make in VR then share
    • no platform lock
      • and yet possible to package, cf own experience with UCB
    • learn from the source
      • literally
    • active support by most browsers
      • Chromium webVR build / Chrome Mobile + polyfill
      • Facebook/Oculus Carmel
      • Samsung
      • Mozilla Firefox Nightly
      • Safari + polyfill
      • Microsoft Edge
  • disadvantages
    • early stage
      • changing API
      • entire environment in state of flux
        • you need the tooling incorporated in your process today
    • you have to be connected not really
      • or you have to package your experience (worked for me)
  • now is a webVR workflow different from a Unity workflow?
    • being able to show AND thus discuss on the result with partners (clients, suppliers, etc) instantly
      • not in 5 min, instantly
    • cf visual
    • more testing
    • having to ask artist for a specific format
    • total control of versioning, your content can NOT be out of date
      • you can even force reload assets while in VR
      • ... yes it's the web.
  • W3C workshop
    • my motivation
      • link traversal -> the metaverse
    • no need to evangelize
    • qualified crowd
      • W3C, Mozilla, Google, Samsung, Facebook/Oculus, NVIDIA, Khronos, Microsoft, Epson, etc
      • with interesting dynamics
        • MozVR presence and active pull/push
        • long run community leaders being poached by non webVR players
        • in browser integration to product (think Twitter/Facebook/WhatsApp/etc mobile apps with their browsers but ... bigger)
    • lightning talks
      • scary complexity, the cost of supporting all hardware from a mobile phone to a high end HMD (can be visualized with arrows for different planes pushing toward a goldilock centre thanks to polyfill, different assets, interface, warnings, etc)
        • with changing API
        • with changing API support per browser per vendor
        • with accessibility (handling handicaps)
        • with responsiveness
        • with adaptability
        • ...
    • breakout sessions
      • declarative VR
      • yeay, link traversal
    • leaving with a sense of amazement thanks to content and discussions (both during and outside the workshop)
      • yet scepticism on what would get actually done after, once every goes back to their company and have to deal with limited resources to prioritize
        • and yet... MozVR announcement for link traversal
  • a word of caution
    • webVR isn't a universal solution
      • if you have a large budget with an experienced team of Unity developers with a pipeline integrating the work of multiple artists, except if you really want to focus on a seamless web integration, you might stick to delivering a MadeWithUnity.exe
    • ... on the other hand Unity isn't a universal solution either
      • if you do Indie games alone, using Unity won't suddenly make your content AAA and it takes time to learn it, you won't be able to avoid coding.


  • browsers race as coloured racing lines with branching
    • Chromium webVR build / Chrome Mobile + polyfill
    • Mozilla Firefox Nightly
    • Safari + polyfill
    • Microsoft Edge
    • Facebook/Oculus Carmel (Chromium based?)
    • Samsung (Chromium based?)
  • webVR production and delivery pipelines
    • production
      • sharing a URL with the artists
      • sharing a URL with the client
      • sharing a URL with the testers
    • delivery
      • sharing a URL with the users
        • (can be a local URL!)
    • focusing instead on the differences
      • webVR
        1. edit content
        2. share via URL
        3. experience
        4. if anything is wrong, do the entire cycle again with every involved parties
      • native
        1. edit content
        2. build
        3. share via URL
        4. (optionally install the unpacking tool)
        5. unpack/install
        6. execute
        7. experience
        8. if anything is wrong, do the entire cycle again with every involved parties
  • webVR stack offering different degrees of control and difficulty
    • webGL (that part you really can't avoid)
    • webGL/threejs/Unity3D template e.g. https://github.com/Boondogl/Unity-WebVR-Template
    • webGL/threejs/StereoEffect/webvr-polyfill/Vizor
    • webGL/threejs/StereoEffect/webvr-polyfill/Aframe/Guri
    • webGL/PlayCanvas
    • webGL/BabylonJS
    • difficulty to estimate and compare frameworks
      • community size
      • number of experiences
      • popularity of experiences
      • number of community created components
  • webVR community with keys actors
    • experience consumers
    • content producers
    • hardware producers
    • experience developers
    • browser developers
      • browsers are everywhere (including in Facebook mobile, Twitter mobile ... but also Steam!)
    • framework developers
    • artists (2D, 3D, sound, )

cf Camille's visuals and spreadsheets for data.

See also hexagonal visualizations

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Potentially, no decision taken yet

  • in VR slides
  • networked experience
  • A-painter (with the save URL option, unlike TiltBrush)
    • could also to a custom brush with Impulse/BXL assets
  • CreaSuite

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Overall remarks and conclusions

  • meet him
  • could be improved by doing that
  • see also that other event

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Other reviews or coverage

To do

  1. improve Template
  2. add map data (:ola-point lat= lon= text='':)