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Social VR Platform Launched Using Scottish Technology

Chloe Henderson


Social VR

Social VR platform, Sansar, launches a public creator open beta using Edinburgh-based Speech Graphics’ facial animation technology.

The masterminds behind Second Life have opened to the public a creator beta version of their social VR system, Sansar, using Edinburgh-based Speech Graphics‘ facial animation technology.

Developed by Linden Lab, the platform is designed to empower individuals, communities, schools, studios, corporations, brands and others to easily create, share, and ultimately sell immersive 3D social experiences for consumers to enjoy on HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, and Windows PCs. Much like Second Life, Sansar is built from the ground up to enable its users to become the creators.

Linden Lab are working with Speech Graphics’  facial animation technology to provide accurate avatar lip-syncing and animations, driven in real time as users speak into the microphones on their audio headsets.

Gregor Hofer, CEO of Speech Graphics, told DIGIT:

“We are very excited to announce that Sansar is the first project that makes use of our new realtime technology where it enables avatar voice communication between users. Using deep learning we can accurately synchronise facial motion to speech in realtime thus creating a sense of social presence by animating avatars in from the user’s voice alone.”

Select individuals were previously invited to trial Sansar’s Atlas directory, which features hundreds of virtual experiences, including multiplayer games, recreations of historic sites and landmarksart installationsmovie theatersmuseumsnarrative experiencesjungle temples360º video domessci-fi themed hangouts, and more. Linden Lab has now opened Sansar in beta, allowing anyone to access the user-created platform to create their own VR experiences.

Ebbe Altberg, CEO of Linden Lab, said:

“Sansar democratises social VR. Until now, complexity and cost has limited who could create and publish in this medium, and Sansar dramatically changes that. It’s been inspiring to see the thousands of virtual creations that have already published with Sansar during our limited preview, and I’m looking forward to the explosion of creativity we’ll see now that we’ve opened the doors in beta.”


Chloe Henderson

Staff Writer - DIGIT

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