With industry-leading immersive capabilities, the Magic Leap 2 device offers countless new opportunities for developers to create immersive applications that bring the metaverse to life, according to panelists at a pre-release developer event hosted by the University of Miami Institute for Data Science and Computing (IDSC).
“Bringing the physical and digital worlds together in mixed realities will change the way we deliver education, create new content and live our lives,” said Nick Tsinoremas, PhD, IDSC Director and UM Vice Provost for Research Computing and Data. “We want to be in the forefront of these technologies, creating the next generation of developers, the next generation of creators, and the next generation of people who can change the world.”
More than 50 UM students, faculty, and guests got a preview of the Plantation-based company’s next-generation augmented reality (AR) device at the “Magic Leap 2 Developer Event” on September 20 at the Lakeside Village Auditorium. The special event was also hosted by the XR Initiative and sponsored by Magic Leap, Unity, and the VR/AR Association.
Panelists included John Cunningham, Head of Government and Aerospace, Unity, in Orlando; Lisa Watts, Vice President of Product Marketing and Planning, Magic Leap; Robb Petrosino, Head of Innovation Division, PeakActivity in Boynton Beach; Dr. Tsinoremas, and Colonel (Ret.) Joseph Nolan, Senior Project Manager, Magic Leap Horizons (pictured below). Another participant was Dilmer Valecillos, an extended reality expert, who took part in the session remotely, answering questions from students.
“The key to the future of digital technology in the physical world is keeping the human at its center,” said Watts. “We are here to enable humans to have that next level of interaction.“ And you as the development community need to help us bring this to life. So, we want to enable you and give you access to the possibilities.”
Founded by University alumnus Roni Abovitz in 2010, Magic Leap is one of a few companies specializing in AR hardware, which layers digital images and experiences on top of the physical world. While the first version of the device used proprietary software, Magic Leap 2 has an open approach for developers. The next-generation wearable device incorporates industry-leading optics, a wide field of view, dynamic dimming capability, multiple sensors and speakers, and powerful computing in a lightweight ergonomic design.
Drawing on his background building AR simulations in the U.S. Army, Nolan gave several examples of how Magic Leap 2’s spatial computing environment could benefit the public sector. “We could train first responders using real streets and building in their community,” he said. Other applications include faster training for automotive the construction trades, expanding the possibility for chemistry lab experiments, and tracking U.S. fishing populations for better sustainability.
In kicking off the discussion, Cunningham said Magic Leap 2 can advance the metaverse in many ways, including immersive digital destinations, digital twins in retail, architecture, healthcare, and other industries, and overlaying data in real-life scenarios. He also highlighted Unity’s development tools and collaboration opportunities between the Miami and Orlando VR/AR Associations.
From his perspective, Petrosino said PeakActivity helps organizations set goals and long-term strategies for the metaverse. “We educate them, and guide them to modernizing and optimizing their infrastructures,” he said. “We also recruit students who want to understand the real-world impact of this growing field.”
Story by Richard Westlund