Firefox Reality and Mozilla Hubs
Getting into the immersive technology and making it feasible was the sole purpose of the talk by MS. Bhuvana Meenakshi Koteeswaran, on 1 February 2020 at NITH during Electrothon 2020. Bhuvana is WebXR/AR/VR evanglist and a prominent Mozilla Rep. She has been conferred with the most prestigious award "Dr. Kalam young achievers award" in the year 2017 for her projects on open source and society beneficial application.
The talk started with a fun interaction including puns and jokes related to the technology sector. Later, she introduced the participants with the basics of AR/VR . What does the 'Virtual Reality' means? How to make someone understand, the uses and advantages of these emerging technologies? Then the audience witnessed the world of AR, VR and XR. She simplified the definition of 'virtual reality' as 'near reality', as the word virtual means near and reality is what we experience as a human being. The talk explained the various uses and advantages of webXR /AR/VR such as how it is far more portable than any other platform and all you need is a web browser to use it. Explaining furthermore, she told the students the concept of XR, wherein 'X' is yet to be filled with a new thing. They were described as the key portals into the immersive technology. The basic introduction was followed by services provided by Mozilla to access and build upon AR and VR. Mozilla hubs is a VR chatroom designed for every headset and browser. As the students haven't came across Mozilla rather than it's Firefox browser, she used that opportunity to rightly propagate about the community and how they involve themselves in volunteer contribution. Mozilla provides platforms WebXR, WebVR, WebAR as developer portals for the creators to work upon their ideas and build interactive games and services. The services cover umpteen number of domains . Varying from education and healthcare to entairnment and infotainment. One such instance was described , in which an application was developed for simulation of prototyping of PCBs.
More than 200 students attended the talk and were enlightened by the knowledge and wisdom delivered by Bhuvana. It ended with a display of an immersive game. A live game room was created in the form of an island. People joined in the room and landed upon the island and could access it's virtual assets via their mobile phones. The game proved to a great stress buster to the participants of the hackathon. We hope all the students of NITH will again get this pleasure of meeting her in the future and learning something out of the box.