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Jim Takes Over TAIT with Cable Coaster Virtual Reality Simulator

December 20th, 2016 | TAIT Take Over

#TAITTakeOver‘s second episode goes behind the scenes with Jim Shumway, one of TAIT’s Technical Leads, for the first-of-its-kind Cable Coaster Virtual Reality Simulator.

“It was a very exciting time to see our technology come together; a first time for the world to link motion-based software with Virtual Reality. And, we pulled it off seamlessly, which is the TAIT way.” – Jim Shumway

Welcome to the second episode of TAIT Take Over! We really geeked out on this project and look forward to showing you our 6 degree of freedom rig among other capabilities. Enjoy!

Hi, my name is Jim Shumway. I have been working for TAIT for 4 years.

We are traveling to New York City to set up the Cable Coaster for National Geographic’s press conference to promote their TV series called “Mars.” It’s a four day event that invites the public to National Geographic’s Recruit Center to find out what it would be like on Mars.

On this project, we had two tech leads. A tech lead is a kind of internal project manager. We are tasked with not letting information fall in the grey spaces, we make sure people keep communicating and that everyone is on the same page. Each tech lead, in the company, comes from a different background –  has a different mutant power –  if you will. Myself, I brought my performer flying background to the project.

Here, we are in the main tent with our Cable Coaster, which is set up on a 30 foot tall by 30 foot on all sides equilateral triangle, and we are going to fly people around with a Virtual Reality headset on to make them experience what landing on Mars is like.

Our 6 degree of freedom rig is effectively an upside down flight simulator table. We are able to not only move up and down, left and right, as we would with a traditional 3D rig, we are also able to effectively pitch, roll, and yaw which gives you quite the sensation of flying.

We have set up 6 degree of freedom rigs in the past as a stand-alone ride, but we have never coupled it with a Virtual Reality component. So, this is the first time that we have created a really immersive ride experience with Virtual Reality. The goal is to make you feel what you are seeing. We spent a lot of time dialing in what our movements were to create the sensations in your mind of what you’re seeing in the headset.

So, the cable coaster was a huge success! It brought National Geographic’s event to life by giving everyone the opportunity to find out what it is like to land on Mars. The machinery performed as it should, flawlessly.  We ended up performing 20% more rides than we had hoped to. We wanted to do 1,000 rides over the course of the 4 days, and we ended up doing over 1,200.

It was a very exciting time to see our technology come together; a first time for the world to link motion-based software with Virtual Reality. And, we pulled it off seamlessly, which is the TAIT way.

It was a successful gig and now we celebrate. Now, we celebrate!

Virtual Reality Simulator
Virtual Reality Simulator

Credit: Virtual Reality Footage – National Geographic

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