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article imageAmazon launches browser-based tool for building VR experiences

By James Walker     Nov 30, 2017 in Technology
Amazon has launched a web-based toolkit to help developers create immersive virtual and augmented reality experiences. Built on Amazon Web Services, Sumerian provides a complete VR creation studio inside a web browser, removing the need for coding skills.
Sumerian was announced by Amazon earlier this week as a way of reducing the learning curve for companies interested in building 3D experiences. The toolkit lets you combine 3D objects, animations and simple script behaviours inside a web-based development environment. The results can be run on several AR and VR devices, including the HTC Vive, Oculus Rift and mobile-based headsets.
Amazon said Sumerian is a response to demand for software that can create immersive experiences without requiring complex coding skills. With developers skilled in 3D content creation still in short supply, companies that want to use the technology can find themselves unable to access the requisite human talent. Sumerian opens VR world creation to a wider audience, improving accessibility and encouraging adoption.
"Customers across industries see the potential of VR and AR technologies for a wide range of users – from educating and training employees to creating new customer experiences. But, customers are daunted and overwhelmed by the up-front investment in specialized skills and tools required to even get started building a VR or AR application," said Marco Agenti, Vice President of Technology at Amazon Web Services. "With Amazon Sumerian, it is now possible for any developer to create a realistic, interactive VR or AR application in a few hours."
Amazon Sumerian
Amazon Sumerian
Amazon
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The drag-and-drop editing environment lets developers arrange 3D assets into distinct environmental "scenes." Models can be imported from external libraries such as Sketchfab and Turbosquid. Alternatively, custom assets created in 3D modelling software can be uploaded. A selection of the most popular 3D object file formats are supported.
Once the assets have been added to the scene, Sumerian's scripting services can be used to add animation and interactivity. A visual scripting tool provides a way to create simple logic rules that define how characters alter their behaviour in response to the user's input. Several other Amazon services including cloud tools for speech recognition and natural language understanding can be invoked inside Sumerian to add complex capabilities.
When the project is complete, the resulting 3D environment can be exported to run on virtual reality content platforms, inside VR-compatible web browsers or in conjunction with other 3D and game creation platforms. The service is available now as part of Amazon Web Services and can be enabled at no extra charge for existing accounts. Amazon said it will lead to new "rich experiences" for VR and AR consumers.
More about Amazon, amazon sumerian, Virtual reality, Vr, augmented reality
 
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