AWE USA 2024: AI and XR, the history of the XR World… DAY 2

XR and AI, the history of the XR World, the XR world’s books and writers, the Auggie Awards, the Hall of Fame… All this happens at AWE USA 2024!
The second day was a long day… Full of events with very interesting panels, the Playground, Pioneers who made this day so interesting Events, events, events… I made a summary below!


Yesterday I forgot to share this wonderful image that Ori Inbar presented on the stage regarding the world of XR and AI.
There was a moment in the last two years when it wasn’t clear how the world of XR and AI could come together. In reality, it was enough for the attention curve on AI to reach the point of its application, to see the XR world integrate this new technology. And the photo you see below fully represents this LOVE!

Here you will find the “AWE 2024: Walkthrough Playground for Journalist”. An hour of presentation at the booths! (I know it’s long but interesting from start to finish!)


The second day opened with Niantic on the Main Stage, with a panel titled “Spatial Computing Needs a New Map” hosted by Brian Bam McClendon and Erik Murphy-Chutorian. With a rich history in building digital maps, we explored how Niantic is setting the foundation for immersive real-world experiences by providing the necessary services and creation tools to make the real world “spatial.

Following, still on the main stage, Connell Gauld of Zappar presented “Building Immersive 3D Content for any Device with WebXR”. Alongside headsets like the Quest 3 and Magic Leap, Apple also announced support for WebXR in the Vision Pro making it one of the most exciting ways for creatives and developers to create and deploy immersive AR/VR content to the web with no app downloads or extended build times. In this talk, Zappar CTO, Connell Gauld showed how to capitalise on the new exciting era of WebXR, and demonstrate how to quickly create, preview and publish stand-out 3D web content across a range of use cases and devices using next-gen web tooling.

A wonderful Tom Furness presented “We Need a Super Cockpit for the Mind (History Talk)” Tom Furness – Virtual World society with a talk on the history of VR entitled “We Need a Super Cockpit for the Mind (History Talk)”.
In addition to providing an update on the work of the Virtual World Society, Dr. Furness talked some of his history in developing the Super Cockpit for the USA in the 70s-80s. He then compared that with the current direction of the metaverse and AI communities to propose a new cockpit that is now needed to navigate our future in the metaverse: the Super Cockpit for the Mind.Thanks Tom for all this!!!

I loved some panels talking about how AI integrates into the XR world.
We saw Terry Schussler from Deutsche Telekom AG together with Leslie Shannon of Nokia e
Dominique Wu of XReality Pro, presenting the panel “GenXR: Creating Generative AI Powered Extended Reality”.
“GenXR”, an exciting intersection of Generative AI and Extended Reality, set to revolutionize user-generated content in the Metaverse. In this panel the speakers examined its potential, emerging applications, and the hurdles to be overcome, with the aim to envision the future of spatial computing.

Marco Tempest of NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, presented “Reanimating Programmer Ada Lovelace with the Magic of AI”. Marco Tempest, who won the AWESOME AWARD in 2022, presented the story of Ada Lovelace, brought to life through the lens of real-time AI storytelling. The piece is rendered on a laptop with a webcam showcasing the very essence of her vision — machines capable of creating art. Incredibly fascinating…

Lauren Morrison from Google presented a panel on “Using AI Image Generation in Production Pipelines” (I love AI and these kinds of topics! – but I think you know that!). AI image generation is a disruptive technology that is changing the way we create content, and VFX houses are some of the earliest adopters. What does this mean for artists, clients, and the cost and quality of final deliverables in 2024 and beyond? In this talk, Lauren showed some behind the scenes examples of how this has changed the way they work with agencies, where the technology succeeds and fails, and how to prepare for a future where this is a regular part of production.

And I cannot fail to highlight the 2024 XR Women Awards which saw present on stage:
Karen Alexander – XR Women, Sophia Moshasha – The World Bank, Julie Smithson – METAVRSE, Tricia Blake – XR Women, Christine Hobbi – Service Alliances International,Inc., Ginna Lambert – Lighthouse XR, Robin Moulder – 3lbXR & 3lb Games,
Wendy Sherman – XR Women. XR Woman presented the fourth annual awards to outstanding XR women in the Trailblazer, Real World Impact and Innovation categories on the Expo Hall stage. This event was *the* Who’s Who of women in XR for 2024.

A highly anticipated fireside chat with VR pioneers Palmer Luckey a founder of Oculus VR and Darshan Shankar founder of Bigscreen VR moderated by Stephanie Riggs during AWE 2024. Their share their experiences and visions for the future of VR. Palmer Luckey is an American inventor, innovator, and entrepreneur. He is the Founder of defense technology company Anduril Industries, designer of the Oculus Rift head-mounted display, and the Founder of Oculus VR, which was acquired by Facebook in 2014 for 3 billion.
In 2017, Palmer founded Anduril Industries to radically transform the defense capabilities of the United States and its allies by fusing artificial intelligence with the latest hardware advancements. At Anduril, Palmer integrates a consumer technology business model with mission-driven objectives, enabling rapid product development and deployment, setting the company apart from other players in the defense industry.

Marty Resnick
of Gartner presented “Humans History of AI: Humans vs. AI – A Rivalry Driven by Fear and Fascination (History Talk)”. There is a complex mix of fear and fascination that drives the public perception of the ongoing rivalry and race between humans and artificial intelligence. From the earliest chess-playing algorithms to today’s sophisticated AI systems, examining the milestones where machines have challenged and sometimes surpassed human abilities, fueling progress and sparking debates about the real-world concerns shaping this evolving relationship.


The 15th Annual Auggie Awards and XR Hall of Fame Ceremony. Since 2010, the annual Auggie Awards have been the most recognized AR and VR awards show in the world. The Auggies continue to showcase the best of the best in augmented and virtual reality, and winners received with a prestigious Auggie Award live on stage. This year was especially special as we celebrated the history of XR, the 15th anniversary of AWE, and all the visionaries who made this industry possible.

On the AWE website you will find all the Auggie Award Winners of this super event which was held last night June 19th at the Convention Center in Long Beach, California.

See you tomorrow with lots of other news from the third day of AWE USA 2024!

Cecilia Lascialfari
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