Oculus Rift

Live air traffic on Oculus Rift

Arkwood is an airspotter, if there is such a word. He was once arrested for impersonating a pilot.

So you can imagine his excitement when I told him that I had created and air traffic control centre for my Oculus Rift virtual reality headset. Here’s how I did it…

First I added an OpenGL point light and a spotlight as per my post OpenGL multiple lights. The spotlight takes the form of a flashlight attached to my head.

Materials and light on the Oculus Rift

I was trying to explain a fragment shader to Arkwood.

‘It is a little program that can run many times in parallel on a GPU. It helps put the pixels into the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset, so you can see pretty virtual rooms.’ Yes, condescending I was.

Arkwood scratched his head. ‘A bit like Hegel then,’ he replied.


‘Hegel,’ he went on, ‘you know, The Phenomenology of Spirit. I was turning a few pages last night, for fun. This fragment shader of yours, it’s like the consciousness of many beings feeding the big beast.’

OpenGL basic lighting on Oculus Rift

Reading a paperback by candlelight might sound romantic. Alas, it is a fucking pain.

‘I can’t read the unmasking,’ I told Arkwood, ‘cos a wax dripping has sealed the last few pages.’

Arkwood twisted the hem of his nightgown and frowned. ‘Perhaps I will fetch a pail of water from the well and boil us some hot potatoes on the grate.’

I was angry. ‘Or perhaps just phone and electrician and get us back into the 21st century!’

OpenGL specular lighting on Oculus Rift

Arkwood disrobed, tossing his T-shirt onto the BBQ. ‘Oh, it is sooo hot outside!’ he lamented. Keen for the neighbours not to spy his scrawny bones and faint, I suggested he leave the back garden for the house.

‘But I love the light,’ he continued, crying.

‘Dont worry,’ I empathised, ‘Put on the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset and I will pipe in all the light you desire.’


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