Currently Funding: What Does *Your* Fox Say? FaceRig Mo-Cap Software

on Monday, Jan. 6th

Here’s another step closer to the “metaverse” science fiction fans were promised in the 90’s.

A small team of software developers in Romania are drumming up crowdfunding support via IndieGogo for FaceRig, which maps a 3D modeled digital character to motion captured input from a webcam. Smile, and the cartoon fox smiles. The demo video the that has been making the rounds of tech sites shows off a handful of characters appearing to be controlled in real time by a fairly standard looking webcam feed.

If what the developers are claiming is true–and they’ve gambled their career reputations on this claim–this is a rather impressive implementation of consumer mo-cap. The FaceRig team is offering licenses on IndieGoGo starting at $10, which sounds like quite the bargain. With thirty days to go as I write they have blown past their $120,000 goal into the $200,000 dollar range.

This isn’t the first time we’ve seen a mo-cap toy aimed–at least primarily–at the gaming market. Sony’s Everquest game unleashed a webcam based avatar animation system in 2012. The big difference here is that the FaceRig developers are looking to make this platform agnostic. No one game will have a monopoly on the tech in their vision.

Of course, that also means they’ve set themselves up for a labyrinth of API compatibility issues and business deals that can go sideways, but let’s not be pessimistic from the word jump.

The developers are looking at creating five versions ranging from a mobile edition to a studio edition aimed at serious mo-cap uses. With the rate they are pulling in cash these versions may come sooner than later…while still coming later than anyone actually wants. This is crowd funded  software development we’re talking about, nothing ever ships on time.

Which isn’t a reason to not be excited about the vision of the future of gaming that is rapidly materializing around us. Between campaigns like FaceRig and the Oculus Rift VR system crowdfunding has seemingly jumpstarted a dash towards a more “out there” future than what game publishers tied to the bottom line have been able to provide. That these technologies will inevitably spill out beyond the cradle of the gaming community is practically icing on the cake.


To Build The VR Education of Tomorrow One Scholar Turns To The Past

There are plenty of folks in the education technology field who are excited about virtual reality as the next great educational tool.



We’re Closer To Our Photorealistic VR Future Than You’d Think (INTERVIEW)

A look into the virtual world of tomorrow with USC researcher Paul Debevec.


Prepare Yourselves For The Personal VR Video Revolution

Virtual Reality is rapidly approaching a watershed moment.

Ralph Echemendia

Spoiler Alert: Hollywood Isn’t Taking Cyber Security Seriously (LA Film Fest)

Tonight at the Los Angeles Film Festival, squeezed in between movies and red carpet events, a symposium on Cyber Security is being held at the Grammy Museum.

Gumroad Rentals H

Rent Video Straight From Social Media Via Gumroad

The people who brought the “Buy Now” button to Twitter are going all-in on film distribution.