Tag: Ken Perlin

MAGNET – NYU Game Center


1)What are the qualities you look for in potential candidates for the NYU Games Center graduate studies programs?

2)Do you find that the co-working spaces available to students part of MAGNET has inspired more collaborative projects to be produced?

3)What do you imagine are the underlying benefits of virtual reality games?



Upon arriving at the NYU Game Center we met with the Director of the NYU Game Center Frank Lantz. Frank introduced himself and then gave us a tour of the spaces that students have access to as a part of the MAGNET programs. We first saw the large entrance used as a co-working space for students in a multitude of different programs. Next, we saw the Open Game Library where students had access to a library of over 2,000 digital and traditional games. Frank then showed us some of the other facilities like the lab with open access to laser cutters, traditional tools, and multiple desktop 3D printers.


NYU Games Center & Open Library

After Frank Lantz finished showing us around we met with Ken Perlin, acclaimed professor of Computer Science. Ken showed us the virtual reality studio where students had access to multiple Samsung Gear VR headsets and full motion capture technology. There Ken and some Game Center students demoed a Unity Game built using the Samsung Gear VR headsets simulating a recreation of the studio itself. Ken and his students were looking to explore what can be achieved within VR that could not be done traditionally in games. Our students got to demo the tech, and ask Ken about his experience with the current and next generation of VR experiences.


Kate Hartman, Ken Perlin & Daniel Jones testing Samsung Gear VR at the NYU Game Center


The NYU Game Center truly seems like a dream school to learn about game design and game culture. The facilities were incredible, encouraging students to interact with one another and collaborate, and giving them access to a large variety of tools and resources to improve their understanding and creation of games. I really loved their philosophy of understanding games as a creative practice and cultural form. I think this visit got me thinking most about the power of collaborative work spaces, and in what ways Digital Futures could adopt some of these approaches as the program evolves and establishes itself over the years. This visit was truly inspiring.





MAGNET – Game Innovation Lab and Ken Perlin



  1. The current future of gaming seems to revolve around 3D virtual worlds and the Oculus Rift. How do you see games and technology grow within the next couple of years? Would it be refined around the themes that everyone is hyped about now, or is there a grander scale out there you’re hoping to see?
  2. What are some values that you see in gaming? In your opinion, which values are important in a game?
  3. I am currently working on experiencing games in a new aspect through game controllers. What new technologies are being developed or experimented to bring out new gaming experiences?

Bonus Question: When the Oculus was introduced to me, I saw it as a usage for mostly games virtual reality and augmented reality. How do you see the system’s usage change from the current way of using the Oculus?


After the tour we received at the NYU Game Center, the class waited in the presentation area of the hall for our Game Innovation Lab’s tour, lead by Ken Perlin.


We were lead into the sound room where we met one of the programmers and grad student who was working on the Oculus Rift and Samsung collaboration project that projects reality into the virtual world. The team first set up markers around the sound room that would be indicators of where each wall is. Connor and his partner Zack then programmed the Samsung and Oculus to be able to detect the markers, which would replicate the room within the Samsung phone. We each tried out the system and explored around the virtual room.


(Daniel testing out the tech)

The virtual room showed the walls with the markers on them, and a rectangular object that represented the table in the room. When the table in the real world moved, the table of the virtual world moves along with it. The values of each object were mapped perfectly, unless the program crashes or offsets due to glitches. After the demonstration, we had a small presentation from David Smith, the person who is cooperating on this project to create lenses for the oculus.


He spoke a little bit about the lenses he was developing, and passed around a couple of prototypes that he was working on. We were able to experience a slightly smaller scale of the Oculus Rift, which also uses the Samsung phone. After the presentation, we hung around to check out some of the behind the scenes programming with Connor, and to talk a little bit with the presenters.

Personal Reflection:

Thinking about the Oculus, I was never able to see what other application it would have other than gaming. After this visit with Ken Perlin, I was able to visualize a further application of the Oculus Rift. Talking with Emma, she explained that the Oculus and the technology that Perlin and his team is building has the capability to connect people all over the world for meetings without having to leave the office space of the corresponding countries. The technology is quickly taking steps forward to not only create a virtual reality game play, but can be applied to real life situations where people can use it for meetings. The malleability of the technology is endless, and as long as it is applied to a possible idea, more technology will be built. It is incredible to think about the cycles that lead us to the technology we have today. After seeing the lab at the NYC Gaming Center, it is inevitable that the program should request space art and tech developments such as this one, to further student knowledge and studies.

Relevant Links: http://mrl.nyu.edu/~perlin/

Use of this service is governed by the IT Acceptable Use and Web Technologies policies.
Privacy Notice: It is possible for your name, e-mail address, and/or student/staff/faculty UserID to be publicly revealed if you choose to use OCAD University Blogs.