Ushering an Era of Human Oriented Computing

At Facebook Connect, Michael Abrash, the Chief Scientist at the newly minted Facebook Reality Labs highlighted the drive towards the second great wave of human oriented computing.

The First Great Wave as defined by Abrash was the Industrial Era of Computing. This is when the first commercial machines constructed entirely from transistors are put on the market. Fortran is developed. The first operating system comes on line. And Kilby invents the Integrated circuit.

Abrash is putting an equally great weight on what is being done for the VR/AR industry now, as the birth of machines that are built for the medium from the medium. Meaning the VR/AR products we are going to start seeing are no longer crude extensions of the paradigms of desktop or mobile, but they themselves are born from the needs and possibilities of a new medium.

From a smaller perspective this is similar to what we saw with the introduction of the iPhone or what Tesla is doing to the electric vehicle market. Before the iPhone, mobile phones were just extensions of desktop, crammed into a smaller space but with similar keyboards and way of interactions, and put in your pocket as “mobility devices.” In reality, they were far from it. With the iPhone, we saw a device that was born from the medium of mobility and computing purely for that medium, with a completely new paradigm that you are so used to now.

We saw the same happening with Tesla. Pre-Tesla, anything on the market were just crude extensions of the gas-automobile; slap on an electric motor, call it a hybrid and herald it as a new age of electric vehicles. It was just an extension of an existing paradigm. Tesla, on the other hand was born as a battery-centric, electric, medium first, then a car layer built on top of it. It was born from the medium for the medium.

We are seeing the same thing happening in VR/AR, where the devices being born are born from mobility and XR, for mobility and XR. Thanks to the work from FB Reality Labs, we are finally computing from a human perspective, true spatiality.

H/T Taron Lizagub, Knoxlabs