Microsoft Teams Up With VW To Make HoloLens Work In Cars

Microsoft has officially announced a new “moving platform” feature for the HoloLens 2, which is designed to let the augmented reality headset work in places like cars. The Verge reports: It addresses a long-standing HoloLens issue of moving environments confusing the headset’s sensors. The enhancement was developed in collaboration with Volkswagen, which has been experimenting with using the headset as a heads-up display in its vehicles. As Microsoft’s blog post explains, its augmented reality headset tracks movement using a combination of camera sensors and an inertial measurement unit (which typically includes accelerometers and gyroscopes). But in a car, the readings from these two sensors can conflict; the headset senses movement but sees a static environment. In other words, it was getting car sick.

That’s what VW discovered after it started investigating the use of augmented reality headsets to teach drivers how to get around a racetrack faster. It started collaborating with Microsoft to fix the sensor problem in 2018, and, eventually, the two developed a prototype system that allowed a car to display real-time information on a connected headset. The system allows virtual objects to be placed both inside and outside of the vehicle. One image released by Microsoft (above) shows the HoloLens 2 projecting a virtual map onto the dashboard of a car, with navigation arrows appearing ahead at key intersections. A second shows it alerting the driver to an upcoming pedestrian crossing.

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Activision CEO Bobby Kotick Will Reportedly Leave the Company After Microsoft Acquisition Closes

Earlier today, Microsoft announced it will buy the video game publisher Activision Blizzard in a $69 billion deal. It’s the largest video game acquisition in history and will make Microsoft the world’s third-largest gaming company by revenue, behind Tencent and Sony, when and if the deal closes. According to Insider, citing a report from the Wall Street Journal, Activision CEO Bobby Kotick is expected to leave the company once the deal closes. From the report: Those sources said that both Microsoft and Activision have agreed that Kotick “will depart once the deal closes,” which could take anywhere from 12 to 18 months. That’s in stark contrast to what Microsoft said in its press release on Tuesday morning. “Bobby Kotick will continue to serve as CEO of Activision Blizzard,” the release said, “and he and his team will maintain their focus on driving efforts to further strengthen the company’s culture and accelerate business growth. Once the deal closes, the Activision Blizzard business will report to Phil Spencer, CEO, Microsoft Gaming.”

Kotick reportedly knew for years about a variety of claims of sexual harassment and rape at his company. An investigation by the Wall Street Journal detailed several specific examples of harassment and rape at Activision. Kotick was not only aware of those claims but, in a least one instance, reportedly intervened to keep a male staffer who was accused of sexual harassment despite the company’s human resources department recommending he be fired.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.