This is the first in a series of videos my team produced promoting the wide array of immersive media resources available at Brown University. In the fall of 2015 we were contacted by Professor Vazira Zamindar about using Google Cardboard in a lecture course. The New York Times had just sent out 1.3 million Google Cardboard units as part of the launch of their NYTVR app, and Professor Zamindar was interested in sharing the stereoscopic 360 video, “The Displaced”, with her class. We were intrigued by the opportunities presented by the Google Cardboard concept, and with less than 100 students in the class we felt this was a manageable deployment. However, by the time the class officially started in the spring semester the enrollment had ballooned to over 200, and we suddenly found ourselves scrambling to tackle the logistics of ensuring that every student had not only had a Google Cardboard viewer and phone, but also had headphones, the NYTVR app, and “The Displaced” video already installed.
Given everything that went into the lecture, we made sure to have one of our staff videographers on hand to record everything. Based on the success of the presentation I was asked to edit down the footage into the video above. This in turn lead us to consider presenting at Educause later that year, which sparked the larger series.