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posted by martyb on Monday April 08 2019, @08:37PM   Printer-friendly
from the I-see-what-you-did-there? dept.

US Army shows how it will use HoloLens in the field

When Microsoft employees balked at the company's $479 million HoloLens contract with the US Army, it raised a question: just what would this system look like? You now have a better idea. The Army has given CNBC an early demo of its Integrated Visual Augmentation System, which uses a modified HoloLens 2 to provide both combat assistance and training. It reportedly feels like a "real-life game of Call of Duty" -- you can see your squad's positions on a map, a compass, and even your weapon's reticle. Thermal imaging would help you see in the dark without as much of a telltale glow as existing night vision headsets.

Previously: U.S. Army Awards Microsoft a $480 Million HoloLens Contract
Microsoft Announces $3,500 HoloLens 2 With Wider Field of View and Other Improvements
Microsoft Misrepresented HoloLens 2 Field of View, Faces Backlash for Military Contract


Original Submission

Related Stories

U.S. Army Awards Microsoft a $480 Million HoloLens Contract 10 comments

US Army awards Microsoft with $480 million HoloLens contract

The US Army has awarded Microsoft a $480 million contract to supply the military branch with as many as 100,000 HoloLens augmented reality headsets for training and combat purposes, according to Bloomberg.

Microsoft beat out other leading augmented reality headset companies, like Magic Leap, which announced that it would be joining the bidding process back in September. Microsoft has had the upper hand, focusing primarily on enterprise markets, unlike Magic Leap, which has focused on the barely-existent consumer market. Microsoft has also previously sold some headsets to the military. But this contract would go well beyond its earlier collaboration, and could greatly expand the reach of the headset.

[...] According to Bloomberg, the military-grade headsets would vary extensively from the existing HoloLens design. They would include thermal sensing and night vision and be used in both training and on the battlefield. Microsoft would be expected to provide at least 2,500 units of the headset to the military branch within the next two years.


Original Submission

Microsoft Announces $3,500 HoloLens 2 With Wider Field of View and Other Improvements 5 comments

Microsoft Reveals HoloLens 2 with More than 2x Field of View & 47 Pixels per-Degree

Microsoft today revealed HoloLens 2 at MWC 2019 in Barcelona. The headset features a laser-scanning display which brings a field of view that's more than 2x the original HoloLens and 47 pixels per degree.

HoloLens visionary Alex Kipman took to the stage in Barcelona to introduce HoloLens 2 which addresses many of the key criticisms of the original headset: field of view, comfort, and hand-tracking.

Kipman says that HoloLens 2 "more than doubles" the field of view of the original HoloLens, though hasn't yet specified exactly what the field of view is. The original HoloLens field of view was around 35 degrees, so HoloLens 2 is expected to be around 70 degrees.

[...] HoloLens 2 is also designed to be more comfortable, with much of the headset's bulk balanced in the back of the headset. Kipman said HoloLens 2 "more than triples the comfort" over the original HoloLens... though the exact weight, and how they came to that specific figure, is unclear. Still, the front portion of the headset is said to be made entirely from carbon fiber to cut down on weight and offers a convenient flip-up visor.

HoloLens 2 also brings hand-tracking which goes much further than the coarse gesture control in the original headset. Now with full hand-tracking, users can interact much more directly with applications by touching, poking, and sliding controls directly rather than using abstract gestures.

Also at Engadget.

See also: HoloLens 2 Specs Reveal 2–3 Hour 'Active' Battery Life, Optional Top Strap, & More
Mozilla is bringing Firefox to Microsoft's HoloLens 2

Previously: HoloLens - Microsoft's Augmented Reality Product
Microsoft Giving $500,000 to Academia to Develop HoloLens Apps
Microsoft Announces Surface Pro 4, Surface Book, and HoloLens Dev Edition
Microsoft HoloLens and its 24-Core Chip
HoloLens 2 to Include Machine Learning Accelerated Hardware
Ford Using Microsoft HoloLens to Help Design Cars
Leaked Microsoft Documents Describe Plans for Surface Tablets, Xbox, "Andromeda", and HoloLens
HoloLens to Assist Surgeons at UK's Alder Hey Children's Hospital
U.S. Army Awards Microsoft a $480 Million HoloLens Contract


Original Submission

Microsoft Misrepresented HoloLens 2 Field of View, Faces Backlash for Military Contract 39 comments

Microsoft Significantly Misrepresented HoloLens 2's Field of View at Reveal

To significant anticipation, Microsoft revealed HoloLens 2 earlier this week at MWC 2019. By all accounts it looks like a beautiful and functional piece of technology and a big step forward for Microsoft's AR initiative. All of which makes it unfortunate that the company didn't strive to be clearer when illustrating one of the three key areas in which the headset is said to be improved over its predecessor. [...] For field of view—how much of your view is covered by the headset's display—[Alex] Kipman said that HoloLens 2 delivers "more than double" the field of view of the original HoloLens.

Within the AR and VR markets, the de facto descriptor used when talking about a headset's field of view is an angle specified to be the horizontal, vertical, or diagonal extent of the device's display from the perspective of the viewer. When I hear that one headset has "more than double" the field of view of another, it says to me that one of those angles has increased by a factor of ~2. It isn't perfect by any means, but it's how the industry has come to define field of view.

It turns out that's not what Kipman meant when he said "more than double." I reached out to Microsoft for clarity and found that what he was actually referring to was not a field of view angle, rather the field of view area, but that wasn't explained in the presentation at all, just (seemingly intentionally) vague statements of "more than twice the field of view."

[...] But then Kipman moved onto a part of the presentation which visually showed the difference between the field of view of HoloLens 1 and HoloLens 2, and that's when things really became misleading.

Microsoft chief defends controversial military HoloLens contract

Microsoft employees objecting to a US Army HoloLens contract aren't likely to get many concessions from their company's leadership. CEO Satya Nadella has defended the deal in a CNN interview, arguing that Microsoft made a "principled decision" not to deny technology to "institutions that we have elected in democracies to protect the freedoms we enjoy." The exec also asserted that Microsoft was "very transparent" when securing the contract and would "continue to have that dialogue" with staff.

Also at UploadVR, Ars Technica, and The Hill.

See also: Stick to Your Guns, Microsoft

Previously: U.S. Army Awards Microsoft a $480 Million HoloLens Contract
Microsoft Announces $3,500 HoloLens 2 With Wider Field of View and Other Improvements

Related: Google Drafting Ethics Policy for its Involvement in Military Projects
Google Will Not Continue Project Maven After Contract Expires in 2019


Original Submission

Microsoft's HoloLens 3 Reportedly Cancelled 5 comments

HoloLens 3 isn't happening and metaverse tie-in strategy is unclear, says report

Microsoft has done a lot with HoloLens and its successor, HoloLens 2, in the time both products have been available to the public. However, even with the line's accomplishments, a HoloLens 3 may not be in the cards.

According to a report by Business Insider, HoloLens 3 has been scrapped by Microsoft and the HoloLens team is trapped in a state of perpetual confusion and uncertainty over what the long-term goals of existing plans are. As a result, teammates are leaving Microsoft to pursue augmented reality positions at rival companies such as Meta, a development that was documented before this report.

Some of the HoloLens team believe the focus should remain on hardware innovation efforts, like has been seen with the U.S. Army's IVAS contract, which holds the potential to net Microsoft up to $22 billion in exchange for its delivery of soldier-attuned HoloLens variants. That project has been delayed, reportedly because Microsoft has been thus far unable to produce a combat-ready device.

Also at PCWorld and Engadget.

See also: Microsoft's HoloLens 3 's--t show' proves it still doesn't understand the consumer market

Previously: U.S. Army Awards Microsoft a $480 Million HoloLens Contract
Microsoft Announces $3,500 HoloLens 2 With Wider Field of View and Other Improvements
Microsoft Misrepresented HoloLens 2 Field of View, Faces Backlash for Military Contract
U.S. Army Shows Off Demo of HoloLens 2 System


Original Submission

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  • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 08 2019, @09:14PM (7 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 08 2019, @09:14PM (#826366)

    I don't think this tech will be showing up on the heads of a platoon of grunts any time soon.

    The field logistics of all the telemetry and ECM you'd have to deploy on the ground makes my head spin.

    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Snow on Monday April 08 2019, @09:16PM

      by Snow (1601) on Monday April 08 2019, @09:16PM (#826368) Journal

      What if an enemy takes a helmet? Is it like maphack mode where you can see all the enemy?

    • (Score: 2, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 08 2019, @09:33PM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 08 2019, @09:33PM (#826378)

      Don't worry about the telemetry... that's Microsoft's area of expertise.

      • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Monday April 08 2019, @11:24PM

        by c0lo (156) on Monday April 08 2019, @11:24PM (#826427) Journal

        I'd feel safer with a telemetry provided by Google, tho.
        It's even easier and more pervasive, just make every helmet use Google's fonts or some tracking pixels and you are gold.

        (grin)

        --
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
    • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Monday April 08 2019, @10:02PM

      by Freeman (732) on Monday April 08 2019, @10:02PM (#826392) Journal

      Don't worry they'll be integrated in time for our Space Force to face down the first onslaught of bug attacks.

      --
      Joshua 1:9 "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee"
    • (Score: 5, Funny) by SomeGuy on Monday April 08 2019, @10:10PM

      by SomeGuy (5632) on Monday April 08 2019, @10:10PM (#826398)

      Forget about the telemetry, how will they manage Windows updates in the middle of a combat situation?

      The enemy has learned the perfect time to attack is on Tuesday nights. :P

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 09 2019, @05:19AM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 09 2019, @05:19AM (#826555)
      Remember everyone - the Army has 1.2M Soldiers. A $100 pair of boots per soldier is a $120M program. Everyone gets a VR headset right? $479M is just the START.
      • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Wednesday April 10 2019, @03:07PM

        by Freeman (732) on Wednesday April 10 2019, @03:07PM (#827458) Journal

        Everyone needs a pair of boots/something to wear. Not everyone would need a VR Headset, at least not right away. As of right now, there's no need for anything, except a small run of prototypes. When/if they can make something useful, it will cost quite a lot. Still, $1.2 Billion dollars for an army equipped with HUDs, would be a steal. Once you have that first step, you can then advance to, face detection, gun detection, threat detection, and so many other interesting things. I mean face detection as in, making a soldier aware, that random dude down the block is hiding, but you can still see his face. Then, when he lifts his gun up to fire, your HUD could warn you, before he even takes a shot. That kind of thing would be very useful for even just a single squad to have. Make sure your entire army has that and you have a distinct advantage, beyond human levels of training for each body in the field. Also, trusting that kind of thing to a robot/AI would be crazy.

        --
        Joshua 1:9 "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee"
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 08 2019, @09:30PM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 08 2019, @09:30PM (#826377)

    This game sucks.

    - Dead Grunt

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by Freeman on Monday April 08 2019, @09:53PM

      by Freeman (732) on Monday April 08 2019, @09:53PM (#826388) Journal

      Always have to be more careful in Hardcore mode.

      --
      Joshua 1:9 "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee"
  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by All Your Lawn Are Belong To Us on Monday April 08 2019, @10:29PM (4 children)

    by All Your Lawn Are Belong To Us (6553) on Monday April 08 2019, @10:29PM (#826407) Journal

    Microsoft has also doubled the mixed reality field of view, making the holographic overlay less like a floating reticle and more like a (virtual) display that's useful.

    But even the author has to admit it's more like that display that's useful........ but still isn't useful yet. (Like 99% of VR). And that's entirely aside from Engadget's horrible reporting which is making lots of assumptions in reinterpreting a press packet for us instead of... reporting - you know, that thing that we used to get that sometimes gave dry facts instead of 100% Entertainment

    it raised a question: just what would this system look like?

    No, it raised the question of why is the Government throwing away $479 million of my tax money at a half-baked system without a defined objective yet.
    Oh, Microsoft needed some money. OK.

    --
    This sig for rent.
    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by MostCynical on Monday April 08 2019, @11:08PM (2 children)

      by MostCynical (2589) on Monday April 08 2019, @11:08PM (#826416) Journal

      The more important question is "what will it actually do when deployed?"

      I think too many people in senior positions have watched the Predator movies and thought they were seeing "real" alien technology.

      --
      "I guess once you start doubting, there's no end to it." -Batou, Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 08 2019, @11:29PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 08 2019, @11:29PM (#826430)

        It is!
        The best that H1Bs can provide.

      • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Monday April 08 2019, @11:30PM

        by c0lo (156) on Monday April 08 2019, @11:30PM (#826431) Journal

        "what will it actually do when deployed?"

        Go down in flames?
        Throw some flares on the battlefield and the scape won't look&feel anymore like the simulated absence of the 'telltale glow' of the night vision.

        --
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
    • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Wednesday April 10 2019, @03:30PM

      by Freeman (732) on Wednesday April 10 2019, @03:30PM (#827469) Journal

      First of all I bought into VR, yes somewhat lacking in content, but Fallout 4 really extended the $/hour of use. I put in over 100 hours on Fallout 4 VR and have all of the achievements, except the stupid grindy ones. There are definite limitations, and if you have to have a 4K resolution screen on a 32" TV to be satisfied with your entertainment. VR is not for you in it's current state. Now, if you have always dreamed of VR. Hoped that some day you could feel like you're in the game. VR is definitely for you. Portal 2 has a free VR DLC. It's stupendously awesome, if you like Portal. It works slightly differently, but it fits the universe. "In Your Face TD" is a Tower Defense / FPS hybrid, same vein as Dungeon Defenders, Orcs Must Die, and Sanctum. It is a really fun, free, somewhat short game (4 or 5 levels, instead of the massive number of levels of the other 3 mentioned.), but it is tons of fun. You destroy an onslaught of robots with towers and weapons that you upgrade a various stations using batteries you've earned. It's some of the most fun I've had in VR. Then, there's the VR Roller Coaster that my kiddo loves to death. I can't afford to go and / or take the time off to go to a theme park all that often. Epic Rollercoaster does that in the comfort of my own home. Sure, I get a bit bored with it after the first few runs, but my kid loves the Dinosaur one to death. It's also an easy VR game/sim to introduce people to VR with.

      Personally, I think the biggest downside to VR is after you go from Fallout 4 VR to "3D" Fallout 4/3/NV, it's just not the same. No matter how good of a "look and feel" you have on the obviously flat screen TV, it can't compare to the immersion that VR gives you. Admittedly, you have some glitches in Fallout 4 VR that don't happen with the normal version. Such as being able to reach through a door to unlock it from the other side, but arguably I should be able to do that when I'm in a set of Power Armor anyway. Unfortunately, the Power Armor never really gives you the feeling of being in a MechWarrior like Mecha, but the first time definitely made me think of that.

      --
      Joshua 1:9 "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee"
  • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Tuesday April 09 2019, @02:41AM (2 children)

    by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday April 09 2019, @02:41AM (#826525) Homepage Journal

    How long until this shit is showing up on the streets of US cities? Hmmm - let me answer my own question: About a year after it's in use in London. London leads the fall into 24/7 police state surveillance. We watch them, and we know what is coming our way.

    --
    "no more than 8 bullets in a round" - Joe Biden
    • (Score: 2) by urza9814 on Tuesday April 09 2019, @06:43PM (1 child)

      by urza9814 (3954) on Tuesday April 09 2019, @06:43PM (#826993) Journal

      London may lead in civilian surveillance, but the US leads in pushing military equipment to civilian users. Expect these the be in the hands of domestic police as soon as Microsoft decides they need more money these are outdated and ready to replace with version 2.0 360.

      • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 11 2019, @10:03PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 11 2019, @10:03PM (#828307)

        They were violently attacked for a few months/year until google backed off selling the product to the public.

        Yet somehow within a year everybody was using their cellphone just as offensively as glassholes 'could have' been using their cameras (since there were uses for the display without the camera on, and the camera usage significantly depleted the battery while in use.)

        So will Hololens 2 Civilian Edition be a Glasshole, or a post-Glasshole Cellphone moment?

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