Oculus Connect 2 Schedule

Oculus Connect 2 will be at the Loews Hollywood Hotel from September 23–25. Registration is closed and only developers selected by Oculus will be attending.

Here is what what the developers will be enjoying whilst attending Connect 2.

Palmer is not officially on the schedule however he attended last years Connect so I would expect to see him here too.


1:00 PM

Making Great VR: Lessons Learned from ‘I Expect You To Die’

Game & App Design | Jesse Schell (Schell Games)

Jesse Schell has been creating VR experiences for over 20-years. In this talk, he shares what he has learned about creating great VR over the years, including many specific examples from ‘I Expect You To Die’.

Duration: 25 min

New Techniques for Streaming VR Video

VR Engineering | David Pio (Facebook)

More content creators are filming immersive 360-degree VR video content than ever before. However, VR video today requires high resolutions and high bitrates that stress the limits of video decoders and modern CPUs. These requirements make it challenging to stream high-quality VR video over typical wifi. We’ll reveal new techniques and transformations you can use to reduce the resources required to stream and decode high-quality VR video for playback on Rift and Gear VR.


How to transform VR video for streaming.

Learn the secrets of how to enable playback of 4k+ content on mobile

Duration: 60 min

1:30 PM

Game Design Un-Rules: Examining Design Failures in ‘Time Machine’ VR

Game & App Design | Patrick Harris (Minority Media)

Learnings and design rules. Lessons and best-practices. Countless talks, articles and books have been written in an attempt to codify design and provide game designers with a rock solid foundation that they can depend on to deliver high quality experiences. This is not one of those talks. Instead, this talk will offer an honest look at some of the “safe” design decisions that failed spectacularly in Time Machine VR in an attempt to un-learn fundamental design rules in order to make a better game in VR.

Duration: 25 min

Hearing With Our Eyes: Interactive Music for VR

Game & App Design | Justin Moravetz (ZeroTransform), Jake Kaufman (ZeroTransform)

From gameplay to relaxation, music can turn a good experience into a great one. This talk will share techniques on designing VR experiences to sync with music and offer tips and tricks for Unity and Unreal. The talk will dissect Proton Pulse, Pulsar Arena, Vanguard V, and NUREN and discuss how these VR experiences deliver visuals and gameplay that blend seamlessly with pre-recorded audio. Attendees will also get a sneak peek at how music and VR is genuinely helping people in need.

Duration: 25 min

2:30 PM

3D Audio: Designing Sounds for VR

Game & App Design | Tom Smurdon (Oculus)

3D audio is critical for creating a believable virtual world, and sound design for VR is very different from traditional games or movies. This talk will cover VR audio techniques including building immersive ambiences, attenuation curves, mixing and player focus. You’ll hear some of the sound design tricks used in the Oculus demos, and learn more about how to work with the Audio SDK to create authentic and compelling experiences.


3D audio is a major component of immersion.

Sound design techniques needed to make amazing audio for VR.

Sound design tricks I’ve learned while making the Oculus demos.

Duration: 60 min

From Paper Cutouts to Virtual Cards: Making the Tabletop Interface for Lost Cities

Game & App Design | Lesley Klassen (The Campfire Union)

Discover the process used to design the virtual interface for the card game Lost Cities on Gear VR. Examine the mistakes and assumptions made in designing the tabletop interface, and review a few “do’s and don’ts.” Review how scale, field of view, typography, art style, and the use of grids can affect tabletop design to improve readability and avoid neck strain. Finally, learn how a little arts and craft time can make all the difference.

Duration: 25 min

3:00 PM

Perception in Low Light VR Environments

Game & App Design | John Thorp (Horn & IVRY)

Low light environments provide challenges for VR presentation. The brain relies on the eye’s rods and cones differently than in higher light situations. Designing realistic immersive virtual reality environments will utilize non-foveal area of the eye, as well as sound queues and memory. This talk will review these issues and discuss how they have been addressed in two Oculus Share apps.

Duration: 25 min

4:00 PM

Maximizing Performance for Mobile

VR Engineering | Chris Pruett (Oculus)

Flawless mobile VR demands careful coding and significant optimization. Come learn what it takes to build great experiences for Oculus Mobile. You’ll learn how to maximize the performance of Unity apps on Gear VR and how to master development activities such as mesh design, scene organization and rendering. You’ll learn tips and tricks (and maybe even a few vulgar hacks) that will help Gear VR apps run at maximum speed.


How to defeat the most common performance bottlenecks on Gear VR, and how they can be addressed in Unity.

How to structure scenes for maximum efficiency.

Unity tools and tricks that can help track down and fix performance problems.

Duration: 60 min

Navigating New Worlds: Designing UI & UX in VR

Game & App Design | Kristoffer Brady (Oculus), Richard Emms (Oculus)

When you’re building new experiences, they have to be intuitive to be truly immersive. We’ll discuss the challenges of designing user interfaces and interactions for an emerging medium and how we approach the constraints and possibilities of VR. We’ll cover design patterns, how to create ideal user experiences in VR, and our vision for the future of VR UI.

Duration: 60 min

Stories and Learnings from the Forefront of Virtual Shared Presence

Game & App Design | Forest Gibson (Pluto VR)

We are at the beginning of a new era of communication. Instead of speaking through a phone or screen, we will soon be able to remotely communicate, collaborate and connect as if we were in person. The team at Pluto VR has been hard at work building towards this future and will share their learnings around self-representation, voice, body language, trust and personal space to create better shared presence in VR applications.

Duration: 60 min

5:30 PM

Shipping Hardware: The Evolution of the Rift

Hardware | Caitlin Kalinowski (Oculus), Stephanie Lue (Oculus)

Step behind the scenes and learn about the gritty side of developing the Rift. We’ll talk about the hardest elements in designing hardware for VR and the challenges we faced turning a 3D computer model into reality. You’ll learn about the difficult design decisions we made to get the Rift ready for people everywhere.


Learn from the mistakes and the difficult tradeoffs we made developing the Rift and apply that to your own product development.

Leave even more inspired about the innovation behind the Rift.

Duration: 60 min

Designing Amazing Games for Gear VR in Unity

Game & App Design | Holden Link (Turbo Button)

Learn the tools, tricks and practices that Turbo Button uses to build their fun and engaging games for Gear VR. Get a sneak peek at scenes from an upcoming adventure game, and see the ways Turbo Button tackled the design challenges to meet Gear VR’s specific hardware needs. Hear how the collaboration and workflow among art, design, and engineering made it possible to hit 60 FPS and how to improve on those workflows via select third-party resources.

Duration: 25 min

Post-Mortem: Building the First Crescent Bay Experiences

Game & App Design | Kenneth Scott (Oculus), Per Vognsen (Oculus)

The Crescent Bay demos from Oculus Connect 2014 were designed to demonstrate the magic of presence and show people the power of virtual reality. The result was a series of 10 experiences with unique perceptual, visual and auditory goals. We’re taking you behind the scenes of the Crescent Bay demos, where you’ll learn how we breathed life into an alien creature that reacts to your presence, how we conveyed scale and distance to create a sense of vertigo, and how we optimized VR content for Unreal Engine 4.


How to make better, more immersive VR content for all types of games, apps and experiences.

Duration: 60 min

Thursday 9/24

10:00 AM

Opening Keynote

Keynote | Brendan Iribe (Oculus)

In the opening keynote, Brendan Iribe will share the latest news from Oculus, including updates on the Rift, Touch, and Samsung Gear VR.

11:00 AM


Keynote | Michael Abrash (Oculus)

Michael Abrash will reveal for the first time some of the exciting projects underway in Oculus Research and how it’s laying the groundwork for the future of virtual reality.

1:00 PM

Conversation with John Carmack

Keynote | John Carmack (Oculus)

John Carmack will give his signature talk about the technical details, challenges, and future plans for mobile VR development.

2:30 PM

Building for the Rift with the Oculus PC SDK

VR Engineering | Anuj Gosalia (Oculus)

The Rift is Oculus’ most immersive platform. This talk will help you understand how to get the most out of the Oculus PC SDK. You’ll learn about the design of the API, how the software stack works, and how to design apps that show the true capabilities of the Rift and Touch.


Developers will come away with an understanding of what the Oculus Rift API will look like and how it will help them build high quality VR apps.

They’ll also understand the design decisions that led to the API and how to use that information to build better applications.

Duration: 60 min

The Early Days of VR Game Design: Lessons Learned

Game & App Design | Jason Rubin (Oculus)

Virtual reality will transform game design forever. Developers will face entirely new challenges when designing for gameplay, locomotion, and input. You have to develop for an immersive world instead of a screen. You have to make the experience comfortable. And you have to take risks. This panel discussion will cover successes and failures from the early days of VR, and help developers bring this new era to life.


Experiment, experiment, experiment.

Big journeys start with a single step.

Chip away at VR’s unknowns.

Shipping comfort means focusing on comfort throughout the project.

Duration: 60 min

4:00 PM

Building ‘Toybox’ for Oculus Touch

Game & App Design | Matt Alderman (Oculus), Brandon Dillon (Oculus)

Toybox was the first demo for Oculus Touch and served as the internal prototyping test bed to experiment with new features and social interactions in VR. Toybox helped us understand how people interact in virtual reality, how to build expressive avatars, and how we can deliver social presence. In this talk, you’ll learn everything we learned about designing intuitive, enjoyable interactions for Oculus Touch.


How to design avatars that are expressive, avoid the uncanny valley, and deliver social presence.

You’ll learn everything we’ve learned about designing for Oculus Touch from building Toybox.

Specifically, you’ll learn how to design interactions that are intuitive, enjoyable, and deliver hand presence.

Duration: 60 min

Introduction to VR Filmmaking from Oculus Story Studio

Cinematic VR | Saschka Unseld (Oculus Story Studio), Max Planck (Oculus Story Studio)

The Oculus Story Studio team will share creative and technical lessons learned while making its first two VR experiences, ‘Lost’ and ‘Henry.’ We’ll discuss the creative solutions we’ve come up with while developing narratives for virtual worlds, the technical tricks used to fit content into 90 frames-per-second, and thoughts on how authoring technology today needs to change for VR.


Inspired to start making movies in VR

Practical knowledge of the techniques needed to start creating film experiences in VR

Duration: 60 min

5:30 PM

Building Social VR Apps and Experiences

Game & App Design | Gareth Davis (Oculus)

Shared experiences in virtual reality open up a new world of possibilities for interaction, communication, work, and play. At Oculus, we’re building new tools, apps, and experiences to bring people together in VR. We’ll cover lessons learned during the development of these experiences and discuss the tools that Oculus is building to help developers create their own social VR apps.


Learn about Oculus’ forthcoming Social VR Features, Apps and Experiences

Lessons Learned during development of Social VR Apps

Gain an overview of the Oculus Social SDK and roadmap to help you build social VR Apps and Experiences

Duration: 25 min

Being There: Designing Standing VR Experiences with Tracked Controllers

Game & App Design | Alex Schwartz (Owlchemy Labs), Devin Reimer (Owlchemy Labs)

Designing for standing VR with tracked controllers is a novel challenge. True 1:1 motion controls make incredible things possible. Owlchemy Labs shares their experiences designing standing VR experiences learned through the development of Job Simulator. Watch as the team discusses tracked input, considerations for real-world ergonomics, skill transference in VR, accommodating for varied height experiences, designing around the tether, and dealing with the constraints of occlusion and locomotion, among other lessons learned.

Duration: 60 min

Lessons from Hollywood: Making Movies in VR

Cinematic VR | Ikrima Elhassan (Kite & Lighting), Felix Lajeunesse (Felix & Paul), Robert Stromberg (The VR Company), Saschka Unseld (Oculus Story Studio), Arthur van Hoff (Jaunt VR)

From indie documentaries to Hollywood blockbusters, filmmakers all over the world are beginning to explore how VR can fundamentally improve the way we share stories. In VR, the traditional conventions of filmmaking don’t always work. Set designs need to adapt. The actor’s relationship to the audience changes. The way you capture and render live-action scenes becomes more complex. Join some of the top movie directors, producers and writers as they share techniques for making movies in VR.


VR (and Oculus) is a real platform for VR filmmaking; major filmmakers are jumping on board

How to solve the most challenging problems in VR filmmaking: telling stories, writing a narrative, dealing with loss of frame, set design, acting changes, and rendering live-action content

Duration: 60 min

Friday 09/25

9:00 AM

Hands on Workshop with Unreal Engine

VR Engineering | Ray Davis (Epic Games), Nick Donaldson (Epic Games), Nick Whiting (Epic Games)

Sign-up for 1:1 consultations to review your Unreal Engine projects with Oculus and Epic engineers who will be on hand to assist with performance optimization and VR design. By the end of the consultation, developers will be on a stronger footing for their journey into VR publishing, and will have established contacts with an Oculus publishing team devoted to their success. Developers interested in participating are required to bring their project, demo, or build. Sign-ups will take place onsite at the Information Desk.

Duration: 3-hours

Hands on Workshop with Unity

VR Engineering | Carl Calleweart (Unity), Mark Schoennagel (Unity), Peter Kuhn (Unity)

Sign-up for 1:1 consultations to review your projects with Oculus and Unity engineers who will be on hand to assist with performance optimization and VR design. By the end of the consultation, developers will be on a stronger footing for their journey into VR publishing, and will have established contacts with an Oculus publishing team devoted to their success. Developers interested in participating are required to bring their project, demo, or build. Sign-ups will take place onsite at the Information Desk.

Duration: 3-hours

10:00 AM

Live Coding Session with John Carmack

VR Engineering | John Carmack (Oculus)

John Carmack will demonstrate the process of developing a simple VR application using a new development environment for rapid development and open deployment on Gear VR. You’ll also learn more about media processing, remote development, deployment, and multi-user setup.


What sorts of applications are appropriate for targeting with VR Script, and what processes are involved.

Duration: 60 min

11:30 AM

Virtual Reality is a Medium: Creating Art with Oculus Touch

Game & App Design | Lydia Choy (Oculus), Brian Sharp (Oculus)

VR is a powerful tool for creative work. Artists working in virtual worlds will no longer be bound by the limitations of physics, and will be free to create in new mediums. This is the beginning of an entirely new genre of artistic experiences. In this talk, Oculus team members will discuss actionable lessons around building rich interactions with Oculus Touch and share their thoughts on the future of professional VR applications aimed at creatives.


Useful, actionable lessons about how to build real, complex software with rich interactions and state in VR.

These lessons are baby steps.

It’s a huge field with infinite possibility.

Excited to get going.

Duration: 60 min

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