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Oculus Connect 3: Full Schedule and Event Details

Oculus Connect 3: Full Schedule and Event Details

Well, it’s that time of year again. The time of year when the weather gets a bit colder, the days get a big shorter, and the world begins to focus on peace on earth and good will toward men. I’m not talking about football season, Halloween, or even Christmas. I’m talking about Oculus Connect’s 3rd event, known as Oculus Connect 3.

Next week will see the start of the third major conference from Oculus: the company that many attribute with birthing the modern age of virtual reality into being. Previous Connect conferences have brought major company revelations, product announcements, and developer updates to the forefront and this year is shaping up to be no different. Now that the Rift is finally released, the attention of the VR community has come to focus with laser-like precision on any news surrounding Oculus Touch or new pieces of content.

Today, the official schedule for OC3 was released. Check it out for yourself and see if there’s enough going on this year to whet your appetite for updates. The full agenda for the week is as follows:


Day One: Wednesday, October 5th, 2016

9:00 AM: Registration
The Hub, Until 7:00 pm

Help Desk
Concourse Until 7:00 pm

10:00 AM: Introduction to Gear VR Development with Unity
211C Until 1:00 pm

This hands-on workshop will quickly get you up and running with VR development in Unity. We’ll focus on workflows aimed at Unity game development as well as special considerations for VR environments. You should leave with a solid understanding of Unity development, VR development, and design workflows for the Gear VR platform.

Mark Schoennagel, Unity

10:30 AM: John Carmack Live App Reviews
Executive BR 210E Until 3:00 pm

John Carmack will review apps live from 10:30-3pm. Stop by and hear his critiques live and have a chance to ask him a question or two.

11:00 AM: Demos
Hall 1 Until 9:00 pm

3:00 PM: Introduction to Unreal VR Workshop
211D Until 6:00 pm

During this hands-on workshop, Epic will walk through a range of Unreal Engine 4 learning resources for VR development, as well as new UE4 features for creating high-quality interactive and cinematic experiences. Brush up on VR best practices and design principles for building visually stunning projects that run at a high frame rate. Plus, learn more about VR topics such as project setup, locomotion and interaction, specialized materials, character setup, and performance optimization workflows.

Luis Cataldi, Education Evangelist from Epic Games; Sam Deiter, Senior Technical Writer from Epic Games; Zak Parrish, Senior Developer Relations Tech Artist from Epic Games


4:00 PM Time Slot

Minecraft: Breaking the rules of VR
Executive BR 210E 1 hour

Mojang broke many rules of VR design with Minecraft for Rift and Gear VR. In this session, the creators of Minecraft discuss how they successfully brought their traditional first-person 3D game into the realm of virtual reality. Learn more about their design goals, technical tricks, and lessons learned.

Soren Hannibal Nielsen, Lead Programmer from Microsoft

VR for good: The social impact of empathy in VR
Executive BR 210H 1 hour

VR has become a powerful empathy machine. What is it about this new medium that’s so effective at connecting humanity? This panel discusses how we can continue to harness the power of VR for positive social change.

Lauren Burmaster, VR for Good from Oculus; Barry Pousman, Co-founder and CEO from Variable Labs; Gabo Arora, Creative Director from United Nations; Elise Olge, Project Manager from the Stanford Human Interaction Lab

Getting funded for your first VR title
Executive BR 210F 1 hour

There are many ways to get your first VR title funded. It can be hard to navigate the venture capitalist world, but doing so is crucial to your success as a VR developer. Hear from Oculus and a number of VC panelists on what you should be thinking about when securing funding and what investors are looking for when working with devs.

Sunny Dhillon, Partner, Signia Venture Partners; Anna Sweet, Head of Developer Strategy, Oculus; Anjney Midha, Founding Partner, KPCB Edge; Clinton Foy, Managing Director, CrossCut Ventures; Anarghya Vardhana, Senior Associate, Maveron VC

vr homepage samsung 360 film

5:20 PM Time Slot

Bring your 360 Videos to life with spatial audio
Executive BR 210F 1 hour

This two-part session starts by covering the spatial audio pipeline for 360 video, followed by an interactive conversation with the world’s leading experts in audio design, including engineers from Skywalker Sound, Felix & Paul, and Technicolor.

Varun Nair, 360 Audio Technical Lead, Facebook; Will Littlejohn, Sound Design Director, Facebook; Kevin Bolen, Skywalker Sound; Jean-Pascal Beaudoin, Head of Sound / Director of Sound Technology, Headspace Studio / Félix & Paul Studios; Viktor Phoenix, Sound Supervisor/Senior Technical Sound Designer, Technicolor Creative Services;

VR filmmaking: What we know now
Executive BR 210H 1 hour

It’s been a few years since we began to experiment with storytelling in VR. We made some mistakes along the way, but have discovered many interesting solutions, too. Top VR filmmakers share their insights, challenges, and hopes for the coming year.

Yelena Rachitsky, Creative Producer, Oculus Story Studio; Jess Engel, Director of Original Content,; Saschka Unseld, Creative Director, Oculus; Félix Lajeunesse, F&P;  Ray Tintori, Director

Making Arizona Sunshine: Cutting and Polishing a VR Gem
Executive BR 210E Until 6:29 pm

A deep dive into the development of Arizona Sunshine from design and content to achieving 90FPS in Unity and more. We’ll cover how to enhance your VR title’s realism with multicore CPUs and the lessons we learned along the way.

Patrick le Duc, Programmer, Vertigo Games; Steve Hughes, Senior Graphics Application Engineer, Intel

6:30 PM: Welcome Reception
Hall 3 Until 8:30 pm

oculus rift product image

Day Two: Thursday, October 6th, 2016

8:00 AM: Breakfast
Hall 2 Until 10:00 am

The Hub Until 7:00 pm

Help Desk
Concourse Until 7:00 pm

10:00 AM: Opening Keynote
Grand Ballroom Until 12:00 pm

12:00 PM: Lunch
Hall 2 Until 2:00 pm

1:00 PM: Demos
Hall 1 Until 10:00 pm

2:00 PM Time Slot

Elevate your VR experience with ambisonic audio design
Executive BR 210E 1 hour

Want to know more about how to use ambisonic audio to increase the immersive qualities of your VR experiences? This session discusses workflows, middleware, the Audio SDK, and plugins to improve audio design for VR developers. We’ll also discuss how to use ambisonic beds for ambience and music.

Tom Smurdon, Audio Content Lead, Oculus; Pete Stirling, Audio manager and lead architect, Oculus;

Art in VR: The creative potential of Quill and Medium
Grand Ballroom 220B 1 hour

Virtual reality has changed how we create. From games and movies, to experiences and tools—we’re just beginning to see what’s possible. But what happens when you take traditional artistic methods and transfer them to VR? Learn how Oculus is creating new tools, specifically for Touch, to help more people express themselves.

Wesley Allsbrook, Art Director, Oculus; Goro Fujita, Art Director, Oculus;

Lightning Tech Talks: Your Guide to the Oculus Social Platform
Executive BR 210H 1 hour

Fun, interactive social experiences foster greater consumer engagement in VR. This talk is a series of technical deep dives on how to best use Oculus social features, including matchmaking, VoIP, and more.

Lauren Vegter, Social Product Manager, Oculus; Adam Hupp, Platform Services Engineering Manager, Oculus; Drew Hoskins, Matchmaking Engineering Lead, Oculus

Building a content ecosystem for customers and developers
Executive BR 210F 1 hour

A discussion about the philosophies and operation of the Oculus Store. What we’ve learned and how we’re expecting to work over the coming years. We will touch on subjects like: How do we decide on which applications to take? How do we market? And what applications perform the best and why? Particularly, we will frame these questions from the perspective of both developers and customers.

Dan Morris, Head of Digital Store, Oculus

3:20 PM Time Slot

Creating social presence in VR
Executive BR 210E 1 hour

Social presence, the sense that you’re sharing a physical space with other people, is one of the most transformative experiences you can have in VR. Come learn about the exciting new products we’re building to make your apps more social and powerful.

Mike Howard, Product Manager, Oculus; Will Steptoe, Software Engineer, Oculus

The evolving landscape of PC VR game design
Grand Ballroom 220B 1 hour

From the first wave of Rift games to the newest Touch titles on the way, game developers have made great progress against some of the toughest challenges in VR. This panel features insights from the minds behind games like I Expect You To Die, Rock Band VR, Luna, and Eagle Flight. You’ll also hear from Jason Rubin, Head of Content at Oculus, as we cover everything from the creative process and prototypes, to breakthroughs in optimization, locomotion, and comfort.

Jason Rubin, Head of Content, Oculus; Jesse Schell, CEO, Schell Games; Matt Boch, Designer, Harmonix; Robin Hunicke, Co-founder, Funomena; Vicki Ferguson, Programming Team Lead, FunHouse VR, Ubisoft

Designing for comfort in VR
Grand Ballroom 220C 1 hour

Creating comfortable experiences is critical to the long term success of virtual reality. This talk will highlight best practices for building comfortable gameplay in VR, including how to implement comfort modes. You’ll also learn more about new safety improvements for Rift and Touch, including how to work with the new boundary system.

Dave Linsalata, Product Manager, Oculus; Matt Dickman, Health & Safety Product Manager, Oculus

Going cross-platform: Taking your VR game from PC to mobile
Executive BR 210F 1 hour

In this panel, you’ll learn about the techniques and tools developers use to bring exceptional PC-quality experiences to mobile VR devices. Developes will share how they’ve created cross-platform games that work on both Rift and Gear VR, including discussions around UI, input, and performance.

David Yee, Game Producer, Oculus; Micah Skaritka, Lead Designer, High Voltage; Michael Austin, CTO, Hidden Path; Jeff Pobst, Hidden Path; Anthony Glueck, VP of Software Development, High Voltage

Lessons learned: Developing mobile VR games
Executive BR 210H 1 hour

Developing for mobile VR inspires us to experiment—from captivating educational apps and films, to riveting arcade-style games and more. To create compelling VR experiences that appeal to both casual consumers and hardcore gamers alike, we have to re-think things like optimization, input, and time spent. This panel of pioneering mobile developers discuss what they’ve learned in their first year developing for Gear VR.

Chris Pruett, Partner Engineer Manager, Oculus; Stephane Intissar, CEO, OZWE; E McNeill, Game Designer, Indie; Nic Vasconcellos, Turbo Button; Theresa Duringer, Co-founder, Temple Gate Games


4:40 PM Time Slot

Under the hood of the Rift SDK: Building for Touch
Executive BR 210E 1 hour

Get a closer look at the new features coming to the Rift SDK that make it easy for developers to build for Touch and integrate hand presence into their VR experiences. The engineers behind the Rift SDK will offer give a peek under the hood at the Rift graphics runtime and provide technical guides to building high performance applications for Rift.

Paul Pedriana, Graphics Engineering Manager, Oculus

Solving the First Person Shooter in VR
Executive BR 210H 1 hour

What does it take to bring one of gaming’s most popular genres to VR? A panel of first person shooter experts share the lessons they learned from the front lines—what works and what doesn’t. Developers from High Voltage Software, Tripwire Interactive, Epic, and more discuss how they’ve modified gameplay, HUD, cameras, and AI to create comfortable shooter experiences.

Steve Arnold, Head of Studios, Oculus; Joe Hamell, Team Art Director, High Voltage; John Gibson, President, Tripwire Interactive; Nick Donaldson, Epic

Failure Workshop: Things that didn’t work
Grand Ballroom 220C 1 hour

Sometimes prototypes and ideas feel amazing in VR—other times they don’t work at all. In this session, three developers share their concepts that failed, what they learned from them, and how they carried those experiences forward to make better games.

Brian Allgeier, Designer, Insomniac Games; Holden Link, Founder, Turbo Button; Alex Schwartz, CEO, Owlchemy Labs

360 video, live action and rendered: Tips from the trenches
Executive BR 210F 1 hour

In VR, technology and creative go hand in hand—without the tech, creative ideas wouldn’t be realized. In this session, you’ll hear from the unsung heroes that yelp make it possible for creative visions to flourish in VR. Whether you’re working on a 360 video or real-time rendered content, the tips covered here can help streamline production, raise the quality of your content, and make tech easier to use.

Eugene Wei, Head of Video, Oculus; Maxwell Planck, Engineering Lead, Oculus Story Studio; Ola Björling, Global Director of VR, MediaMonks; Brian Cabral, Director of Engineering, Facebook; Joseph Chen, Executive Technical Producer, Here Be Dragons


6:00 PM Time Slot

What’s New in Unreal VR
Executive BR 210H 1 hour

When it comes to high-quality visuals and performance, developers turn to Unreal to deliver the best VR experiences. Learn about Unreal Engine 4’s latest VR advancements and features, and how Epic can help you maximize your Oculus Rift and Gear VR experiences. Gain insight into the future of VR development with Unreal, and see how developers are empowered like never before with new tools, optimizations, and streamlined development.

Zak Parrish, Senior Developer Relations Tech Artist, Epic Games;

Designing Touch
Executive BR 210E 1 hour

This discussion will cover some of the explorations, challenges, and findings from the design and development of the Touch controllers. There will also be handful of the Touch team available for Q and A.

Peter Bristol, Industrial Design Director, Oculus;

A look inside VR games from a QA Perspective
Executive BR 210F 1 hour

A light, funny, and interactive quiz-presentation from QA leaders at Oculus and Babel. They’ll discuss challenges, specific considerations, and best practices associated with QA-ing games with VR technology. Audience participation is highly encouraged!

David Yee, Game Producer, Oculus; Mathieu Lachance, FQA Director, Babel Media

Amplifying the experience: Music in VR
Grand Ballroom 220C 1 hour

VR gives artists a chance to immerse fans and transport them deeper into the music they’ve created. Realizing VR’s potential as a canvas for musical creativity requires new tools and techniques. From understanding the storytelling aspect of VR to the impact of spatial sound, this session will explore learnings from pioneering VR music creators and explain how artists can start to express themselves in this new medium.

Robert Stevenson, Head of Content Strategy, Oculus; Paula Cuneo, Partner & Strategic Marketing, Oculus; Chris Milk, Founder & CEO, Within; John Sykes, President of Entertainment Enterprises, iHeartMedia; Matthew Davis, [namethemachine]; Michelle An, SVP, Head of Video Production and Creative Content, Universal Music Group/Interscope Records

Profiling VR Games and Applications for Optimum Performance
Grand Ballroom 220B 1 hour

Maximizing the gaming experience on a VR headset requires more than innovative technology and gameplay. It’s equally affected by a game’s ability to manage power consumption and avoid device heat ups. These factors can impact a game’s success by limiting performance and making it unplayable on mobile. Learn how to improve power and thermal efficiency while achieving maximum performance for your VR game or app. Analyze and optimize your VR games and applications by exposing detailed CPU, GPU, and system data to reveal your game’s power and performance characteristics. Understand the potential impact of other apps and background processes for a complete picture of system performance.

Kevin Hawkins, Principal Engineer/Developer Tools Lead Qualcomm Technologies Inc., Advanced Content Group

7:00 PM
Closing Reception
Hall 3 Until 10:00 pm


The back side of the Oculus Rift.
The back side of the Oculus Rift.

Day Three: Friday, October 7th, 2016

9:00 AM: Registration
The Hub Until 2:00 pm

Help Desk
Concourse Until 2:00 pm

Hall 1 Until 3:00 pm

Hall 2 Until 11:00 am


10:00 AM Time Slot

Beyond gaming and film: Bringing experiences to VR
Executive BR 210E 1 hour

Virtual reality content has evolved rapidly during the first year of consumer VR, giving people many opportunities to experience the medium’s power beyond gaming. We’ve seen everything from compelling 360 video flying over waterfalls to an interactive experience that shows us what it’s like to be blind. Hear from distinguished creators as they share how they make unique, boundary-pushing experiences for VR.

Kamal Sinclair, Director, New Frontier Lab Programs at Sundance Institute; Colum Slevin, General Manager, Oculus; Arnaud Colinart, Notes On Blindness; Evelyn Miralles, Engineer, NASA; Barnaby Steele, Creative Director, Marshmallow Laser Feast

Education and VR: Changing the way we learn
Grand Ballroom 220B 1 hour

Virtual reality is not only going to transform the way we consume entertainment, but it’ll also completely change the way students learn in and out of the classroom. This session explores how to build and deploy successful educational VR programs and shares examples of lessons the community has learned from pilot programs.

Laird Malamed, VP and GM, Oculus; Shauna Heller, Founder, Clay Park; Jerome Solomon, ‎Dean of the College, Cogswell Polytechnical College; David Whelan, Founder, Immersive VR Education; Jay Borenstein, Software Engineering Manager, Facebook

The secrets of building great multiplayer games in VR
Grand Ballroom 220C 1 hour

Social is a powerful experience in VR, but building a game that is responsive in your headset as well as with other players around the world presents a whole new set of challenges. In this session you will hear from leads on Unspoken (Insomniac Games) and Anshar Wars 2 (OZWE) on the lessons they’ve learned in creating responsive, low-latency, multiplayer games in VR.

Shaun McCabe, Production Director, Insomniac Games; Stephane Intissar, CEO, OZWE; Chad Derzen, Studio Director, Insomniac Games;

Accelerating Your VR Applications with NVIDIA VRWorks
Executive BR 210H 1 hour

Across graphics, audio, video, and physics, the NVIDIA VRWorks suite of technologies helps developers maximize performance and immersion for VR games and applications. This talk will explore the available tools and provide application-level tips and tricks to take full advantage of these features. A focus will be given to the latest VRWorks integrations into Unreal Engine and Unity, both as case studies and as a guide for engine licensees on engine-specific implementation details.

Cem Cebenoyan, Director of Engineering, Game Engines and Core Tech, NVIDIA;

Introduction to Gear VR Development with Unity
211C Until 1:00 pm

This hands-on workshop will quickly get you up and running with VR development in Unity. We’ll focus on workflows aimed at Unity game development as well as special considerations for VR environments. You should leave with a solid understanding of Unity development, VR development, and design workflows for the Gear VR platform.

Mark Schoennagel, Unity


11:20 AM Time Slot

Advanced Interaction Concepts for VR Using Tracked Controllers
Executive BR 210F 1 hour

This talk will discuss recent developments in the field of interaction design and lessons learned exploring VR UX. It will provide specific examples and live demonstrations of how to design and implement physics, audio, and visual cues to signify weight, importance, and meaning.

Bradley Weiers, Unity;

The Making of Dead and Buried: The (Almost) Post-Mortem
Executive BR 210H 1 hour

With the launch of Touch right around the corner, the team behind Dead & Buried shares the techniques they used to create this fast-paced, multiplayer, Touch title. The discussion covers the full spectrum of design, avatar IK animation, multiplayer performance optimization, and design tricks for creating memorable social interactions in VR.

Steve Arnold, Head of Studios, Oculus; Ryan Rutherford, Software Engineer, Oculus; Pärtel Lang, Founder, Root Motion; Jeff Matsuda, Artist; Andrew Welch, Software Engineer, Oculus

Creating a safe environment for people in VR
Grand Ballroom 220B 1 hour

VR thrives when people can safely interact and communicate with each other. Join an interactive discussion on how developers can create safe and abuse-free environments in VR. Learn abuse prevention and privacy prevention best practices from experts who have led online safety programs at Second Life, Facebook, and Oculus.

Lauren Vegter, Social Product Manager, Oculus; Shaka Johnson, Oculus Associate General Counsel, Consumer Platform; Jim Purbrick, Engineering Manager, Facebook; Tony Sheng, Product Manager, Altspace; Darshan Shankar, CEO and Founder, Bigscreen

Social VR: A conversation with Mike Booth
Executive BR 210E 1 hour

Building an authentic social environment in VR is a challenge that’s largely unsolved. Join seasoned game designer Mike Booth as he shares what he’s learned at Facebook about discovering, iterating, and learning what it takes to create natural feeling social experiences in VR.

Mike Booth, Product Manager, Social VR, Facebook;

Best Practices using AMD’s LiquidVR and introducing AMD’s Project Loom Real-time 360 video stitching
Grand Ballroom 220C 1 hour

Join AMD for an engaging technical discussion of two of AMD’s latest VR technologies. We’ll start with LiquidVR SDK best practices based on integration of its multi-GPU feature into UE4, including detailed code-level discussions. Next, we’ll introduce technical details of AMD’s new open source 360 VR video stitching framework, Project Loom. Highly optimized for GPUs, Loom is built on top of the open standard OpenVX computer vision accelerator AMD open sourced early this year. Loom handles both real-time (low latency) and offline workloads, with an open-source, extensible framework so that ISVs can modify or add their own custom IP to suit their needs within their applications and plugins for existing tools.

Mikhail Mironov, Principal Member of Technical Staff, AMD; Mike Schmit, Director of Software Engineering, AMD

1:30 PM: Closing Keynote
Grand Ballroom Until 3:00 pm

For more information about Oculus Connect 3 in San Jose, CA, visit the official website.

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