Mozilla Experiment: Oculus Rift VR Coming to Web Browsers

By Published June 27, 2014 at 3:25 pm

Mozilla is one of the software world's leading open source companies. The group has made recent technological strides to bring high-end gaming to browsers, including Unreal Engine 4, and aims to expand accessibility of games on various platforms. Much of this is done using WebGL and a subset of JavaScript, allowing for a wide spectrum of hardware compatibility on the majority of operating systems.

Mozilla's newest experiment hopes to find ways to exploit Oculus Rift and other VR devices within a web browser, to include 3D gaming alongside more common tasks. Mozilla lists its initial steps for bringing VR to the web as:

  • Rendering Canvas (WebGL or 2D) to VR output devices.
  • Rendering 3D Video to VR output devices (as directly as possible).
  • Rendering HTML (DOM+CSS) content to VR output devices – taking advantage of existing CSS features such as 3D transforms.
  • Mixing WebGL-rendered 3D Content with DOM rendered 3D-transformed content in a single 3D space.
  • Receiving input from orientation and position sensors, with a focus on reducing latency from input/render to final presentation.

Early builds of the code are available for those interested in toying with it, all found on the official blog post. The project will enable web browsers and virtual reality interfaces to communicate with one another, potentially unlocking all manner of new input methods on the web. Implementation of the technology branches out far beyond gaming and could have deep impact on web development, if the experiment and VR are both successful.

- Steve "Lelldorianx" Burke.

Steve Burke

Steve started GamersNexus back when it was just a cool name, and now it's grown into an expansive website with an overwhelming amount of features. He recalls his first difficult decision with GN's direction: "I didn't know whether or not I wanted 'Gamers' to have a possessive apostrophe -- I mean, grammatically it should, but I didn't like it in the name. It was ugly. I also had people who were typing apostrophes into the address bar - sigh. It made sense to just leave it as 'Gamers.'"

First world problems, Steve. First world problems.

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