March 22nd - 26th
March 22nd - 26th
As part of our long term goal to increase the sustainability and accessibility of the conference, this year IEEE VR 2020 is hosting a collection of online social virtual spaces for people who cannot travel to Atlanta during the week of March 22-26th. These web-based 3D spaces will be accessible in traditional browsers on most devices, and in VR via WebVR. This experimental track is IEEE VR’s first step toward future conferences adding even more meaningful remote experiences for people who are not able to physically attend the conference.
We will be live streaming video of the technical paper sessions and keynotes (information will be available on the VR website closer to the conference). Taking advantage of these streams, we are creating 3D social spaces for remote participants to co-watch the talks with others, socialize and meet each other. We will also use these 3D social spaces to host a virtual poster session (for a subset of the posters whose non-attending co-authors would like to present remotely).
We expect all of the online activities this year to take place synchronously with the conference, which will generally be 9:00-17:00 EST during the week of March 22-26th.
We will use a customized version of Mozilla’s Hubs (hubs.mozilla.com) social VR platform to host a collection of virtual rooms for people who cannot physically attend the conference. Participants can join the Hubs rooms from any web browser, using 2D screens or immersive VR displays (for more information on hubs, visit https://hubs.mozilla.com ). The conference site is located at https://hubs.ieeevr.online, and will be available to all registered conference attendees.
These rooms will include spaces to co-watch the conference video streams in small groups, visit a virtual poster session running synchronously with the live poster sessions at IEEE VR, and social rooms for remote attendees. Anyone may register for the remote experience and join other remote viewers in the shared 3D spaces, discuss the talks and posters and meet other remote attendees.
Our goal is to increase access to the conference for remote participants who would otherwise be unable to attend due to mobility impairments, chronic health issues, temporary travel limitations, or a choice to reduce their impact on the environment due to carbon emissions from long distance travel.
Participants access the Hubs rooms by visiting https://hubs.ieeevr.online, and logging in with the email address they used to register for the conference. We will require all remote participants to register for IEEE VR on the main registration site (at no-cost) to gain access to the hubs virtual spaces.
We will soon have a link to register and gain access to the Hubs rooms and Discord chat server here:
Until then, if you are considering taking part in this experience, we would appreciate if you could fill out this brief survey so we can gauge potential interest.
In addition, we are looking for volunteers to help run the social experiences. If you are interested in remotely participating, and would like to help make this a great experience for everyone, please consider volunteering! To sign up as a possible volunteer, please fill out this form:
We have set up a Slack server that both local and remote VR participants can use to chat with each other and the conference staff. Anyone who has registered for the conference can visit https://ieeevr-slack-invite.glitch.me/ and enter the email address they used to register for VR to gain access to the IEEE VR slack server. (This service will be activated soon)
This service can be used by local and remote conference attendees to chat with each other, discuss the sessions, and explore common interests. There will also be channels to support local participants (e.g., coordinating lunch outings or asking about Atlanta) and remote participants (e.g., finding times to meet online).
The conference will stream video of the majority of the technical paper presentations and keynotes on Twitch. We are using these streams in the social experience above, but you may also watch them directly, using these direct Twitch URLs:
I am attending VR, and would like to use the Slack chat service to chat with other local attendees. Can I get access without registering above?
Unfortunately, no. The Slack server for VR is not a public server, so we require a registration step to obtain the URL to join. This will also give us a record of the attendee associated with the conference, in case problems arise.
Can I present my IEEE VR paper remotely?
No. This experimental online track will not be used for presentations this year. It is something we are considering for future conferences. Please share your thoughts on this in the conference feedback (on site) or in the survey we will be sending out after the conference.
Can I present my IEEE VR paper remotely?
In general, no. This experimental online track will not be used for presentations this year. It is something we are considering for future conferences. Please share your thoughts on this in the conference feedback (on site) or in the survey we will be sending out after the conference. (Note: please see the http://ieeevr.org/2020/health/ page for those affected by the Coronovirus outbreak, and our accommodations for remote presentations, which include the possibility of remotely presenting in VR.)
I’ve never used Hubs or any 3D virtual world. Will this be hard to use?
We have created a tutorial room to help people with all levels of experience get comfortable with Hubs. We will also be happy to answer questions, and help you learn how to use the environment effectively.
If you visit hubs.mozilla.com, you can also create a room and experiment on your own to learn the controls and see what’s possible. The Hubs Wiki https://github.com/mozilla/hubs/wiki has overviews of the controls and capabilities of hubs, how to use it on desktops or in VR, and other tips on making the Hubs experience enjoyable.
I’d like to see what remote people are chatting about and possibly join in the discussions, even if I am not in the Hubs rooms. Can I communicate with remote attendees as a local attendee?
The Slack server offers the opportunity to connect and chat with remote participants. If you would like to chat in the social VR spaces, we strongly recommend that you do not try to access the Hubs rooms from the conference WiFi due to bandwidth limitations on site. There will be a room onsite with computers dedicated to allowing local participants to visit the Hubs servers and chat with remote participants.
Where can I find the Hubs links?
The main https://hubs.ieeevr.online server will list all the rooms on the front page. You must be logged into the email account you used to register for IEEE VR to access the rooms.
Why are there multiple channels and virtual spaces for each of the viewing rooms?
The number of people in a single Hubs room is limited for two reasons. At a practical level, the more people that are in a room, the more powerful a machine is needed to handle the network traffic from voice and data streams, and to render all the avatars in real time. So, each room is limited to 25 participants. But, even if we could handle more people in one room, the social spaces become visually cluttered, harder to navigate, and loud when many people are present. One of the advantages of online social video co-watching is that you can chat with others nearby, and spread out so you don’t disturb others. This becomes harder the more people are in a room.
The room I would like to watch the videos in is full (or all rooms are full), can I still watch with others?
When you follow the link to a Hubs room, you are placed in a lobby before you can enter the room. The view from the lobby should let you watch the screen and hear the activity in the room, and while in the lobby you can type messages that will be seen by others in the room. Any number of people can watch from the lobby, so if your preferred room is full, you may still watch from that room’s lobby (and chat with people in that room).
What are the rules? Can I talk with others? Use hubs features like dropping in media or drawing in the space?
In line with the VR Code of Conduct, you should not do things that negatively affects other peoples’ experience. If you would like to chat with others, please be aware that your audio can be heard by all members of the room, but does fall off over distance. We have made the rooms big so that you can move away from others if you want to chat.
One powerful feature of Hubs is that many things with a public URL (images, videos, 3D models, pdf’s) can be brought into the room by pasting the URL in it. If there are related bits of content, such as PDFs, images or videos of the work being presented, you can drop those in the room to share them (Note: some rooms do note allow dropping of media files, to ensure a consistent experience). But, again, please consider the impact on others. Any content dropped in the room will be visible to everyone, and need to be loaded and rendered in everyone’s 3D room. If you play a video, everyone will see and hear it.
Purposely adding content to the rooms to disrupt the experience for others will be considered a Code of Conduct violation.
If someone is engaging in behavior that I feel violates the Code of Conduct, how can I report it?
You may report inappropriate behavior in a variety of ways. We will have volunteers watching the Hubs server for inappropriate content, and for messages reporting that conduct, so you can type a public message and mention @admin or @moderator to make sure we see it (even something like “Can a @moderator please contact me”). You may also log into the Slack server and send a message on the #code-of-conduct channel (someone will message you directly in response to a request in that channel), directly message one of the conference chairs (Blair MacIntyre, Ed Swan, Kyle Johnsen, or Kiyoshi Kiyokawa) on Slack, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are attending VR and see behavior on the Slack or Hubs chat that you feel is inappropriate, you may also talk to someone locally. The student volunteers or any committee member should be able to help you.