VR Events You Can Attend in April Whilst at Home

Popularity of virtual reality events and the convenience of continuing to bring your community together despite isolation is moving our industry to a new phase.Β  Take for example the HTC VIVE Ecosystem conference 2020 that was held on the 19th March 2020 in virtual reality instead of Shenzhen, China. People could use their VR headset or Desktop PC to attend from all over the globe! Aspects of this particular conference broke many traditions such as utilising 3D models to truly deliver a memorable, interactive experience for your audience that lived up to the host platform’s name: Engage.

Virtual VIVE Ecosystem Conference 2020 in Immersive VR Education’s Engage platform

Virtual Reality events have grown significantly recently because the world is isolating to combat Covid 19. This makes it harder for more traditional gatherings to continue. However, there is a way forward. You can either choose to bring your event online by hosting a 2D webinar or you can use the cutting edge technology that your audience will remember using 3D virtual spaces.

In this article I am going to share with you virtual reality related events that you can attend in both VR and webinars. If you haven’t attended a VR event before in VR then check out my past coverage of The World’s First Full Day VR/AR Conference held in VR – Merging Realities and 6 Day Conference Held in Virtual Reality hosted by Educators in VR. In addition, it is important to know that any event that you can possibly imagine already takes place in VR such as church, meetups, education, entertainment e.g. music, comedy, cinema and recreational activities and so much more.

It’s worth mentioning the VR app Bigscreen here too. There are many channels, movies and livestream that you can watch in here together alongside your friends and family. You have the ability to sit and enjoy what others are playing, pay for feature film tickets like you would at a real cinema/movie theatre or stream your own from your desktop.

Suzanne Showcasing VR YouTube video of watching a movie trailer in Bigscreen

What VR events are happening in April?

(remember to stay tuned for the webinar events further down the page)

8th April @ 3pm BST / 10am EST (30 mins) in Engage
Exploring Engage – a hands on lesson to experience the various features available on the Immerse VR Education’s Engage platform. Compatible with most VR headsets and desktop PC.

8th April @ 7pm BST / 2pm EST (30 mins) in AltSpace VR
Women in XR & Allies Meetup – A welcoming virtual meetup for women and allies in the STEM, Tech & XR community who are passionate about learning, growing and shaping the presence of women in our virtual community. Compatible with most VR headsets and desktop PC.

9th April @ 6pm BST / 1pm EST (1 hour) in AltSpace VR
Health Systems Chat: Internet of Things Meets VR in Healthcare – Just because Internet of Things World & IoT Day Slam 2020 has been cancelled doesn’t mean you have to miss out! Join Chuck Webster for a virtual reality event instead! Chuck creates all his VR environments personally and tailors them to the event he is hosting. You won’t be disappointed!

9th April @ 9pm BST / 4pm EST (1 hour) in Engage
Educators in VR – XR and the Corona Virus – Learn about how XR has been affected by and adapted to the global Corona Virus Pandemic. Compatible with most VR headsets and desktop PC.

10th April @ 9am BST / 4am EST (30 mins) in AltSpace VR
Multiverse World Hop – Let’s go explore different worlds! Compatible with most VR headsets and desktop PC.

poster showing a virtual comic convention event details
Comic Vket – a comic convention held in virtual reality

10th-12th April @ various in VR Chat
Comic Vket: Comic Convention in virtual reality – You can go around the booth, purchase your favorite fan fiction (Dojinshi), and communicate with people at the event! Free and easy to join and exhibit at this event! You can login to the event venue from your PC, smartphone, or VR devices.

11th April @ 6:30am BST / 1:30am EST (30 mins) in AltSpace VR
Multiverse World Hop – Let’s go explore different worlds! Compatible with most VR headsets and desktop PC.

A list of VR events taking place on the #GetSocial channel via AltSpace
#GetSocial’s virtual reality events on AltSpace VR via Andy Fidel

13th April @ 6am BST / 1am EST (1 hour) in Engage
#CPDinVR Bloom’s Taxonomy & VR – Join Steve Bambury as he shares his Bloom’s taxonomy and VR project. I highly recommend you attend Steve Bambury’s events! I’ve been in the audience for a number of years and you are always in for a treat when he is hosting. Compatible with most VR headsets and desktop PC.

13th April @ 6pm BST / 1pm EST (1 hour) in Engage
#CPDinVR Bloom’s Taxonomy & VR – A second chance to join Steve Bambury as he shares his Bloom’s taxonomy and VR project. I highly recommend you attend Steve Bambury’s events! I’ve been in the audience for a number of years and you are always in for a treat when he is hosting. Compatible with most VR headsets and desktop PC.

15th April @ 3pm BST / 10am EST (1 hour) in Engage
Exploring Engage – a hands on lesson to experience the various features available on the Immerse VR Education’s Engage platform. Compatible with most VR headsets and desktop PC.

16th April @ 9pm BST / 4pm EST (1 hour) in Engage
Educators in VR: Convincing the Sceptics – VR Education has come on in leaps and bounds but many educational institutions are still reluctant to buy into this next wave of spatial computing technology. Compatible with most VR headsets and desktop PC.

virtual art gallery with the words 'Would you like to exhibit art in virtual reality?'
A virtual art gallery by Art Gate International 2020

16-19th April @ various in Art Gate VR app from Oculus Store
Art Gate International 2020 – Join this global inaugural art fair in virtual reality! Explore and collect Post-War and Contemporary Art from around the world in VR. Collections from North America, Europe, Africa, and Asia are currently on view and new exhibitors are joining daily. Find blue chip artworks by Andy Warhol and Frank Stella or uncover contemporary artists such as Erin Loree and Obdulio Piloto. (Click the link to be taken to their website to either register your attendance OR register to exhibit). Compatible with Oculus Go or Oculus Quest using the Art Gate VR app.

There are more events on the various platform links that I have included so far. Unfortunately, I can’t see any events sections on other VR platforms which is a shame. It would be useful to have these events pages so we can view & plan for what’s taking place on all available VR platforms but that’s not available yet.

What webinar events about immersive are happening in April?

Last week I attended the VR Voice webinar that covered virtual reality meetings and collaboration platforms. It was approx 8 hours long and was one of the most useful events that I have ever had the pleasure of attending remotely. I expected it to be an hour or so long and do a whistle stop tour or presentation of what is currently available. I couldn’t be more wrong! This webinar hosted by Bob Fine & Joanna Popper, was jam packed with 16 sessions, led by leaders of these VR platforms and showed us video demo’s of their offerings. It was brilliant! We heard from the likes of The Wild, Acadius, MeetinVR, IrisVR, Wonda VR, Rumii and so many more. You can catch the replay from the VR Voice website from later this week.

Screenshot of Spatial VR meeting space showing a desk, 2 people and a wall of post-it notes.
Screenshot of Spatial VR meeting space via VR Voice webinar held on 2nd April

7th April @ 4pm BST / 1pm EST via ImmerseUK.org & Educators in VR
Social VR Platforms series – This series will focus on platforms that can be used for remote working. This first event will cover Engage and Mozilla Hubs.

8th April @ 17:15pm BST / 12:15 EST (1 hour 15 mins) via Reuters Events/XR Intelligence
XR Capacity Building to Adapt to the “Brave New Virtual World” – Wondering how XR will develop over the next few months and how it could impact the workforce? Hear from Volkswagen, ExxonMobil, Anglo American, Deutsche Telekom. & XR Bootcamp.

16th April @ 6pm BST / 1pm EST (1 hour) via Reuters Events/XR Intelligence
Don’t you get it? Getting nonusers to use XR and see the benefit – This webinar will explore some of the pitfalls hindering more widespread adoption of XR and identify strategies to demonstrate its potential in order to drive uptake, appreciation and value.

That’s everything I’ve managed to find for you. If you know of any other events taking place in April or later this year then please get in touch and let me know. We don’t have a central place for events like these yet and I know how upsetting it can be to suddenly come by an event on social media that has since past. Let’s change that if we can!

Its worth calling out that with isolation and more of us working remotely we should encourage the use of VR environments as a video conferencing alternative. There will come a time when we are a bit bored of 2D conferencing, especially as time goes on. Hopefully this article shows you that many platforms are accessible across devices – which is great because popular VR headsets are already out of stock! Plus you have the ability to record or livestream your events which is incredibly powerful should you wish to reach a wider, more global audience. In fact, doing this would also allow for captions so your event promotes inclusion and diversity in the true sense of accessibility too.

I’ll touch on the various multi-user platforms that are available in my next post. I’ll send it straight to your email address once I’ve published it, if you’ve signed up to my blog.

Take care everyone []-)

Little kid wearing vr goggles back to front so their eyes are magnified.

You might be interested in seeing what a VR event actually looks like so I have included the example below for you.

IEEE2020 Virtual Medicine VR livestream from Suzanne Showcasing VR YouTube channel

Showcasing VR October 2019

I love October! The ever changing colours of the leaves high upon the trees or low on the ground fill me with so much joy at this time of year. A tree making the transition to its autumn colours reminds me that change occurs one leaf at a time. A timely reminder as those dark nights start to set in and when you may question if your efforts will ever start to become noticed. Well, if you can relate then I say to you, keep going!

This has been another action packed month for me but let’s start off with some fantastic news!

We’re now officially a Top Blog!

We feature in the Top 75 Virtual Reality Blogs & Websites to follow in 2019!

Can you believe it?! We’re not even last, not that last is a bad position in this case but I automatically figured that’s where we would sit. Suzanne Showcasing VR is ranked at 55th position on a list with all the major players and my role models such as Road to VR, VR Scout, VR Focus and my good pals Tony with The Ghost Howls and Tom with Virtual Perceptions! It’s such an honour to be featured alongside such high prestige, it really is. I would like to thank Anuj Agarwal for including us and for thinking so highly of us too πŸ™‚ Make sure you go check out the full list because it is a fantastic resource for keeping up to date and hearing from so many different perspectives in and around virtual reality.

Being a Special Guest on a VR chat show!

A dream come true appearing on Steve Bambury’s #CPDinVR event as a special guest

I love Steve and everything he does for VR Education. I’ve regularly attended his events for the last few years now and learn so much from them every time I am there. His guests are always inspiring and engaging so to be part of his last show was a massive compliment to me. I featured alongside some remarkable pioneers in the industry and will share the recording on this blog as soon as it becomes available. Check this video out to give you a flavour of the epic’ness of these events: Steve speaking with the one and only Godfather of VR himself, Tom Furness

Check out Steve’s YouTube channel & subscribe to see more like this – or better yet come along to his event next month in VR []-)

Learning To Build VR Content & Experiences

I parked aside the Blender course because the Oculus & Unity course that I mentioned last month started. I’m only on Unit 3 of the Design, Develop & Deploy course, which is about 3-4 hours of the way through and my oh my… I 100% recommend this course to EVERYBODY who is interested in developing a VR app, game or experience! This course covers EVERTHING. We’re talking the pre-production, through to marketing, developing, the Oculus approval process (which is valuable insight in itself as so many developers have voiced their frustration at having work being rejected for the stores). This course is approx 23 hours long, it’ll take me longer because I’m note taking along the way. It’s in beta mode and it’s all FREE!!! You learn through pre-recorded videos but there is a community around this course on Unity that you can interact with, connect with tutors, ask questions etc. Definitely check it out, sign up and see you in class soon []-)

Completed TTA lessons & coursework

Learning Business Skills

The Transformative Technology Academy that I mentioned last month is now finished. We learned loads about how to create a successful technology for good business. It was an intense 4 weeks so I have had my head down a lot this month – if you follow me on Twitter you will have noticed a significant drop in my tweets. This was why. It was a great use of time and so much to digest. Your have virtual lessons to attend, mentor sessions, live pitch sessions then there’s the community side too with personal 1:1 meetings, sharing & learning as a group. I’d recommend this to anybody interested in starting up a company that uses tech to improve humans/society. Again it’s a free initiative which is amazing especially when you are learning about the inner workings of famous tech companies from their founders & CEO’s! Here’s the link again for good measure.

I managed to find some time to complete a site refresh for my start-up company, Pivotal Reality. Now is the time to be brave and push myself forward and let the world know what it is I do! Then came a bit of bad luck… I broke my Samsung S7 phone! Yes I know it’s an old phone but it was the only phone I can use alongside the Samsung 360 camera as a kind of preview mode before filming. I was working on a project to film a children’s home that one of our elderly residents grew up in and wanted to see again but couldn’t visit it because of mobility restraints. Luckily I had filmed enough to complete this project for her πŸ™‚ But I’ll be on the market for a new 360 camera so please let me know what you would suggest. I was probably long overdue an upgrade to be fair anyway because my videos were not as clear & detailed as I would have liked. I like the look of the Insta360 or perhaps the Vuze but need to do my research and budgeting to see what would be best. If you use any yourself and can tell me your thoughts on any 360 cameras then I would be so extremely grateful to hear those from you πŸ™‚ Thank you

Raising VR Awareness

Team Meetings in VR

Team meetings in Virtual Reality have become a bit of a regular thing for me at my day job. My boss is super cool and has the patience of a Saint listening to me harp on and on and on about virtual reality… Well he’s only gone and upgraded from a Samsung Gear VR to an Oculus Quest!!! Totally skipped out the Oculus Go that he initially planned and went for it. He’s not looked back. Buuut, this means that we can explore various Social VR locations, we previously always used AltSpace VR for our meetings for accessibility eg we could both log on to that cross devices/using different branded/makes of headsets. We tried Rec Room and he beat me at basketball so I’m not that keen on going there again… ha! Kidding! We’ve started to dabble in how to create your own Rec Room spaces. I want to check out Facebook Horizon so perhaps that could be our next location. It’s worth noting that if you love VR and want to introduce it into your business but feel like there’s not really a use case yet, VR Meetings is an easy one to pilot to give it a go πŸ™‚

VR Content I Have Tried This Month

I sadly didn’t have much time to be in VR this month at all because of all the lessons I was to attend outside of my full-time day job & family life. Not making excuses but it has been a demanding month. I only really have 2 experiences that I tried out (aside from Steve’s customise VR Chat Show) was an immersive storytelling experience called AfterLife and Stunt Runner in Rec Room.

Interactive ‘you can choose the path to follow’ story experience

Afterlife was an exciting concept and I was most psyched about the possibilities of choosing your own path/story based on decisions that you made in the experience. I knew it was going to be heart-tugging story and if you watch the video you will learn why I was nervous about it being especially raw for me to play. If you do decide to play this then make sure your headset it fully charged ahead of playing (especially if you are using an Oculus Go to avoid overheating), sit down/do not stand and for heavens sake try moving the controller around more often than I did… ha!

Had the honour to be taught how to scale Stunt Runner by a Pro []-)

I accidentally stumbled across Stunt Runner in Rec Room. This is a cross between Ninja Warrior & Total Wipeout but in virtual reality. I was just messing around with the obstacles outside and having a bit of a giggle to myself tbh but this guy was flipping all over the place. I saw that he and another went through to a door and thought sure why not. Headed in and was put in front of a starting line with these guys ready to race. I sooo wasn’t ready for this but couldn’t back out now. We were off! Running along beams, scaling rope ladders, dodging moving parts, bouncing on trampolines and occasionally falling to our doom, ok that was just me.. and it was quite frequently rather than occasionally. This one guy was like the Flash! I didn’t get it, I was running as fast as he was but was falling a lot or getting hit by the moving obstacles until I seen him do it. A sneaky wee mario like short cut route. They must’ve felt sorry for how rubbish I was or perhaps they sensed I knew, I did try to follow them but fell so perhaps they saw all that lol! We did about 4 rounds or so of different courses and then the 3 of us teamed up. DrPovertyShoes spent so long with us and showed us how to do double jumps, triple jumps, where to jump jumps. DrPoveryShoes was amazing and such a cool wee person. They managed to beat their own personal best whilst with us so I said to take a selfie, glad I did or I wouldn’t have been able to shine a light on them like this.

What’s happening in November?

Virtual Reality Day is on Saturday 23rd November so I will be sure to write a post about all the publicised events that you can join. I haven’t signed up to do anything yet but I will definitely do that. I was disappointed that there wasn’t anything irl (in real life) based in Scotland and had hoped to arrange something this year but didn’t have a lot of interest at the time of approaching folks. It would be cool to host a Social VR hopper and just bounce about the various platforms. I might do something like that and livestream it as I imagine there should be a lot of people hanging around the different venues this year! I wonder if any of the 1st time virtual reality users/owners are even aware of this day? Make sure you help spread the word this year so folks know about it.

I’ll also be checking out Facebook’s Horizon and researching some Escape Room experiences so stay tuned for videos and written content on those soon.

I’m still waiting on further news about the FeelRealSensory Mask but it should be with me to test and show you by the end of this year at the latest. I’ll keep you posted on that one.

What will virtual reality smell like I wonder?

Thanks so much for sticking with me & reading this month’s blog. I hope you found it interesting? Have great fun Trick or Treating (Guising or Galoshan in Scottish terms) this Halloween!

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