EMPAC offers daylong demonstration of the HoloLens “mixed reality” platform, followed by evening talk with Microsoft’s Kayla Kinnunen

Troy, NY — On Wednesday, November 1, the Curtis R. Priem Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) at Rensselaer Poytechnic Institute will offer a free daylong demonstration of the Microsoft HoloLens “mixed reality” platform, followed by an evening talk with Microsoft developer Kayla Kinnunen focused on the technology’s many possible applications. The demonstration will take place on the EMPAC Mezzanine from 10AM-9PM and will allow guests to experiment with the wearable, interactive HoloLens technology. Kinnunen’s talk, titled Microsoft HoloLens and the Future of Human-Computer Interaction will begin at 7PM in the EMPAC Theater.

Microsoft’s HoloLens is the world’s first fully untethered, self-contained holographic computer. Wearing the headset, users scan their physical surroundings and use gestures to place and manipulate digital 3D objects. Distinct from virtual-reality environments, the HoloLens creates a “mixed reality” where computer-generated elements are integrated into the human world. From the classroom to the operating room and into the performing arts, applications for the system are just starting to be explored.

Following the HoloLens demo, during which guests are invited to explore the system’s capabilities and imagine new applications, Kinnunen will discuss the future of human-computer interaction within these mixed-reality environments. Kinnunen leads a production team building HoloLens and Mixed Reality applications. She and her team generate content for the platform meant to reach a wide range of audiences and spur creativity and innovation in the new medium. This event will be an opportunity for audience members to help imagine the impact of devices like the HoloLens and provide feedback on their experience working in mixed reality.

For more information, please visit empac.rpi.edu.

The Curtis R. Priem Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is where the arts, sciences, and technology interact with and influence each other by using the same facilities and technologies, and by breathing the same air. EMPAC hosts artists and researchers to produce and present new work in a building designed with sophisticated architectural and technical infrastructure. Four exceptional venues and studios enable audiences, artists, and researchers to inquire, experiment, develop, and experience the ever-changing relationship between ourselves, technology, and the worlds we create around us. EMPAC is an icon of the New Polytechnic, a new paradigm for cross-disciplinary research and learning at Rensselaer, the nation’s oldest technological research university.

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