Facebook AI Platform DeepFocus is Now Open Source
Prepare for a more realistic virtual reality.
The Facebook Reality Labs has been exploring ways of enhancing the realism of VR experience through software or hardware innovations. The company launched a prototype headset that is built with a varifocal mechanism during the Facebook Developer Conference (F8) in May of this year. The Facebook has also unveiled its AI-powered platform DeepFocus which is capable of rendering real-time blur with varied focal distances.
Facebook is aiming at providing its consumers with very realistic experience inside virtual reality. The end goal, for Facebook, is to be able to deliver highly realistic experiences to the users of its VR products which will be practically inseparable from the actual reality. It is taking virtual reality to its logical conclusion.
The human eye is like a tiny camera and when you focus your gaze on a particular object, the scenes which are at a different depth will appear blurry. The blurry parts of an objects helps the person perceive the 3D structure of your environment and also helps you determine where next to focus your eyes. With the use a varifocal virtual reality headset, the viewer is able to perceive a crisp clear image wherever they look. With DeepFocus, you can get a rendering of the rest of the scene that will be just as it appears in the real world with a natural blurriness.
DeepFocus also provides the viewer with a relative degree of comfort. If the virtual reality rendering looks and feels more natural, then it will be a lot easier and enjoyable to use. It also enables the user to achieve an all-day immersion. Visual fatigue or eye strain is a common problem if you are immersed into a visual experience for an extended period of time, be it in playing video games or staring at a laptop screen. Having a virtual reality that delivers a beautiful and more natural visual experience can make a huge difference in this regard.
Currently, the Facebook Reality Labs is using DeepFocus that comes with a Half Dome, a platform agnostic software. This has enabled the DeepFocus team to open source both its work and data set for engineers and developers that are building new virtual reality systems. An open source DeepFocus will also come in handy for vision scientists as well as anyone researching on perception. FacebookReality Labs is expected to release more updates in the coming year.