Facebook’s virtual reality push is about data, not gaming
Facebook has announced the latest version of its successful standalone virtual reality (VR) headset, the Oculus Quest 2. The new device packs more computing power and a sharper screen than its predecessor, and is also US$100 cheaper.
The Oculus Quest 2 is the latest step in Facebook’s long-term strategy of making VR more accessible and popular. Facebook recently brought all its VR work under the umbrella of Facebook Reality Labs, it has announced new applications like the Infinite Office VR workplace, and will also require a Facebook login for future Oculus devices.
The compulsory link to Facebook has many consumers concerned, considering the social media giant’s chequered history with privacy and data. VR and its cousin, augmented reality (AR), are perhaps the most data-extractive digital sensors we’re likely to invite into our homes in the next decade.
Why does Facebook make virtual reality headsets?
Facebook acquired VR company Oculus in 2014 for an estimated US$2.3 billion. But where Oculus originally aimed at gamers, Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg wants VR for social media.
At the same event last year, Zuckerberg said Facebook sees VR as a pathway to a new kind of “social computing platform” using the enhanced feeling of “presence” that VR affords. For Facebook, the introduction of VR-based computing will be like the leap from text-based command line interfaces to the graphical user interfaces we use today.
This may well be right. VR affords a strong feeling of embodied presence that offers new possibilities for entertainment, training, learning and connecting with others at a distance.
But if the VR future is the one Facebook is “working in the lab” on, it will function via the company’s existing social computing platform and business model of extracting data to deliver targeted advertisements.
Virtual reality collects real data
A VR headset collects data about the user, but also about the outside world. This is one of the key ethical issues of emerging “mixed reality” technologies.
As American VR researcher Jeremy Bailenson has written:
…commercial VR systems typically track body movements 90 times per second to display the scene appropriately, and high-end systems record 18 types of movements across the head and hands. Consequently, spending 20 minutes in a VR simulation leaves just under 2 million unique recordings of body language.
The way you move your body can be used to identify you, like a fingerprint, so everything you do in VR could be traced back to your individual identity.
Facebook’s Oculus Quest headsets also use outward-facing cameras to track and map their surroundings.
In late 2019 Facebook said they “don’t collect and store images or 3D maps of your environment on our servers today”. Note the word today, which tech journalist Ben Lang notes makes clear the company is not ruling out anything in the future.
Virtual reality leads to augmented reality
Facebook wants to collect this data to facilitate its plans for augmented reality (AR).
Where VR takes a user to a fully virtual environment, AR combines virtual elements with our real surroundings.
Last year Facebook unveiled the Live Maps application, a vision of an expansive surveillance apparatus presumably powered by AR glasses and data collected from Oculus Insight. Live Maps will provide many minor conveniences for Facebook users, like letting you know you’ve left your keys on the coffee table.
Now Facebook have announced their first steps towards making this a reality: Project Aria. This will involve people wearing glasses-like sensors around Seattle and the San Francisco Bay area, to collect the data to build what Wired co-founder Kevin Kelly calls “the mirrorworld”, the next big tech platform.
People are rightly concerned about the ethical implications of this kind of data extraction. Alongside Project Aria, Facebook launched its Responsible Innovation Principles page, and they’re already quick to emphasise that faces and license plates will be blurred in this data collection.
As we have argued elsewhere, framing questions about VR and AR surveillance in terms of individual privacy suits companies like Facebook very well. That’s because their previous failings are actually in the (un)ethical use of data (as in the case of Cambridge Analytica) and their asymmetric platform power.
We need more than just ‘tech ethics’
Groups like the XR Safety Initiative recognise these emerging issues, and are beginning work on standards, guidelines and privacy frameworks to shape VR and AR development.
Many emerging technologies encounter what is known as the Collingridge problem: it is hard to predict the various impacts of a technology until it is extensively developed and widely used, but by then it is almost impossible to control or change.
We see this playing out right now, in efforts to regulate Google and Facebook’s power over news media.
As David Watts argues, big tech designs its own rules of ethics to avoid scrutiny and accountability:
Feelgood, high-level data ethics principles are not fit for the purpose of regulating big tech … The harms linked to big tech can only be addressed by proper regulation.
What might regulation of Facebook’s VR look like? Germany offers one such response – their antitrust regulations have resulted in Facebook withdrawing the headset from sale. We can only hope the technology doesn’t become too entrenched to be changed, or challenged.
But regulation has not always stopped Facebook in the past, who paid out US$550 million to settle a lawsuit for breaching biometric privacy laws. In the multi-billion dollar world of big-tech, it’s all a cost of doing business.
Another question we might ask ourselves is whether Facebook’s virtual-reality future and others like it really need to exist. Maybe there are other ways to avoid forgetting your keys.
5 Easy Ways To Run Windows Software On A Mac
Macs can run a variety of software programs, although only some support Windows. There are many ways to run Windows on a Mac.
Some of these options are similar to installing Windows software using Linux. Running Windows programs from a Chromebook is another option. This includes virtual machines, dual-booting, Wine compatibility, and remote desktop options.
A Virtual machine can be used to run Windows desktop programs. These enable you to install Windows and other OSes in a separate window on your Mac. Windows will assume it’s running on a regular computer. But it’s running inside an application on your Mac.
It’s not necessary to run your Windows program from the virtual machine windows. Many virtual programs allow you to extract Windows programs from your virtual machine window so that they can be displayed on your Mac Desktop. They will still run in the background within the virtual machine.
To install Windows on virtual machines, you will need a Windows License. If you have an existing product key, you will be able to download Windows installation media for free.
Apple’s Bootcamp allows the installation of Windows alongside macOS. It is possible to only run one operating system at a time. Therefore, you will need to restart your Mac to switch between macOS OS and Windows. If you have ever dual-booted Linux on your Windows computer, it is exactly like that.
Windows is best installed as a real operating software on your Mac if it’s important to run Windows. Windows will work on your Mac as a real operating system, so you can run Windows and Windows applications at the highest possible speed. Your Mac will perform equally well as a Windows PC running the same specifications.
It’s a compatibility layer, which allows Windows programs to run on other OSes. Wine is, basically, an attempt to rewrite Windows code that applications rely upon so that they can run under other operating systems. Wine isn’t perfect. Wine is not able to support all Windows applications, and can have problems with some. The Wine ApDB can help you get an idea of what applications are supported, but it focuses more on Linux support.
Wine, however, is one way to use Windows apps on a Mac. Wine doesn’t require you to run Windows applications. It’s free. Download Wine, WineBottler, and WineBottler on macOS. Then see how it works with your app.
CrossOver Mac paid application by CodeWeavers. It will run Windows applications on Mac. CrossOver utilizes the open-source Wine program to accomplish this. But CrossOver’s graphical interface is very user-friendly and focuses on official support of popular programs. If the official program you are using doesn’t function, CodeWeavers will fix it for you. CrossOver Mac pays for CrossWeavers’ improvements, which means that CodeWeavers also contributes their improvement to the open-source Wine projects.
CrossOver offers a free trial if you are interested in trying it out. You can check out a list of compatible programs before you buy. CrossOver’s focus is on compatibility. However, CrossOver still relies on Wine and will not work with all programs.
If you already have Windows, you can run Windows software from your Mac. Instead, you can use a remote desktop to access Windows machines from your Mac. Windows servers can be hosted by companies that have business software. They can also make their applications accessible to Macs. Even if your Windows PC is only for home use, you can set up remote access on that Windows PC to allow you to connect to it whenever you want a Windows program. For visually intensive applications, such as PC games, this may not be the best option.
What Does a Social Media Marketing Agency Do?
When hiring a social media marketing agency, you should ask to see a portfolio of their work. A social media marketing agency should have an impressive portfolio of work. Their work involves developing a strategy and presenting it to prospective clients. This includes identifying the client’s goals and pains, as well as the audience they are targeting.
The right social media marketing agency will also advise you on how to target a particular audience and create ads that get results. The agency can also create custom audience profiles and target different groups based on demographics, such as age, gender, location, and work status. They can also perform A/B testing to determine which ads are working best.
Moreover, a social media marketing agency will also analyze metrics to determine ROI. Metrics like impressions, interactions, and conversions are useful for evaluating the impact of social media activities. An excellent social media marketing agency will help you develop a social media strategy that is aligned with your business goals and will increase your company’s digital presence.
Having a Social Media Marketing Company for Your Small Business Software
A social media marketing company can increase your brand’s reach and improve its online presence. Your business can utilizeits competitive analysis reports and search engine optimization services. Moreover, these companies can provide you with no-obligation quotes and offer bespoke pricing plans suitable for different businesses.
When choosing social media management for your small business software, it’s essential to have clear goals. Social media can be a time-consuming task, so you might as well leave it to the experts. Luckily, numerous social media marketing companies have created software that makes it easy to manage these accounts. In addition, some of these companies offer more than just social media management. The software can also help you stay on top of the latest business trends and help you stay ahead of your competition.
Hiring a social media marketing agency can help you achieve your marketing goals in various ways. They can supplement your in-house team by handling content creation, influencer outreach, community management, and social advertising campaigns. Or they can manage your entire campaign, ensuring maximum ROI and accountability. To get the most out of your social media marketing, you should hire a company with experience in your industry.
Make sure to have the best SEO agency for your business as you explore more with Anthem Software!
Anthem software has more information on search engine marketing. Our agency program provides smart and affordable options for clients to market and acquires new customers.
You can reach us by calling our sales or service line at (855-269-9222). Furthermore, you can also inquire via email at email@example.com.