flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Discussion about VR

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edwalker
Posts: 27
Joined: Tue May 17, 2005 4:22 am

flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by edwalker » Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:33 pm

I've not been able to find this issue addressed yet, so I'll post this question.

Although I find the VR experience very compelling, it is still somewhat suboptimal as a simulation experience due to the inability to visualize and operate control buttons and levers. The various workarounds that have been mentioned include peeking under the visor, voice commands, memorized keypads, etc., but they are still just that - workarounds. It would be nice to have a more integrated experience, especially for training students who need to focus on what's in front of them.

The video below shows a feature of Oculus (possibly still experimental) in which a window can be extracted and inserted into the visual field while using Condor2 VR. Unfortunately, it is in Russian, so I can't fully comprehend how this was implemented. I wondered if anyone else caught this and tried to make it work? It would be a great help to have one's own flight computer (e.g., XCSoar or LK8000) able to be brought into the visual field.

The other issue is that I've noticed that Oculus can create a moving dot that tracks the center of one's gaze. If this were able to be combined with an stick-based actuator switch many of the functions of the flight computer and an imaged keyboard controller might be able to be brought into the sim visual field and managed with a single switch, or at least a more limited number of switches.

It's already been noted that the Oculus hand controllers are not implemented in the VR experience, however I'm not sure they are really helpful in figuring this out since one needs to "insert" one's hand into the controller. The gaze dot with a stick button would be optimal.

Any ideas or observations? Does anyone know where the developers are heading with this?

If we can figure this out, I might just sell my glider. :)

Ed

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=40yRpZEEsz8

GlenBecker
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Joined: Sun Dec 01, 2019 5:42 pm

Re: flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by GlenBecker » Sat Jan 18, 2020 9:57 pm

I'm posting with some trepidation about being part of the reason you sell your glider. :) But I can only comment on getting XCSoar into your vr world.
I do it with OVRdrop. It's a Steam app and well worth the money. I use WMR (Lenovo Explorer) and control XCSoar with Voice Attack. Between having a ton of HOTAS buttons configured and some voice control (including dictation voice-to-text for chat) I can stay immersed the whole flight.
https://store.steampowered.com/app/586210/OVRdrop/

pckormic
Posts: 137
Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2005 6:40 pm

Re: flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by pckormic » Sun Jan 19, 2020 12:41 pm

GlenBecker wrote:
Sat Jan 18, 2020 9:57 pm
I'm posting with some trepidation about being part of the reason you sell your glider. :) But I can only comment on getting XCSoar into your vr world.
I do it with OVRdrop. It's a Steam app and well worth the money. I use WMR (Lenovo Explorer) and control XCSoar with Voice Attack. Between having a ton of HOTAS buttons configured and some voice control (including dictation voice-to-text for chat) I can stay immersed the whole flight.
https://store.steampowered.com/app/586210/OVRdrop/
Hi, I am very interested in using XCSoar pc version into the VR view, using OVRdrop. I want to use XCSoar in the same pc that runs Condor
But I don´t know how to connect the PC XCsoar to Condor, I always used the Samsung S5 phone (the same phone I use in Real life flights) connected to Condor using a flat screen, but now I use a Valve Index HMD and I really miss the XCSoar "inside" the cockpit.

I use too Voice Attack, to ease the burden of the joystick hotas buttons, and I would like to know the commands are used, or a good manual who explain what commands uses the XCSoar with the VoiceAttack program.

Goodbye and goood flights
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rontheglider
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2011 6:36 pm

Re: flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by rontheglider » Sun Jan 19, 2020 2:05 pm

running XCSoar and Condor on the same computer is easy using HW VSP3 – Virtual Serial Port.
Set up a connector (virtual port) i.e. on COM9 en select both COM9 in Condor and XCSoar.
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GlenBecker
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Joined: Sun Dec 01, 2019 5:42 pm

Re: flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by GlenBecker » Sun Jan 19, 2020 3:59 pm

I'm traveling for the week but will send some screenshots when I get home. I'm pretty sure the free version of VoiceAttack does not allow exporting of commands, but they're fairly simple once you see them.
pckormic wrote:
Sun Jan 19, 2020 12:41 pm
I use too Voice Attack, to ease the burden of the joystick hotas buttons, and I would like to know the commands are used, or a good manual who explain what commands uses the XCSoar with the VoiceAttack program.

pckormic
Posts: 137
Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2005 6:40 pm

Re: flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by pckormic » Sun Jan 19, 2020 8:18 pm

rontheglider wrote:
Sun Jan 19, 2020 2:05 pm
running XCSoar and Condor on the same computer is easy using HW VSP3 – Virtual Serial Port.
Set up a connector (virtual port) i.e. on COM9 en select both COM9 in Condor and XCSoar.
Hi, I downloaded the HW VSP3 -Virtual Serial Port program, but I haven´t been able to create a COM9 port.Gives me an "error" everytime I tried.
I need a little instructions to use properly that program. :(
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Bre901
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Re: flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by Bre901 » Sun Jan 19, 2020 9:02 pm

IIRC you must "run as admin"
CN : MPT

rontheglider
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2011 6:36 pm

Re: flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by rontheglider » Sun Jan 19, 2020 9:40 pm

open VSPE
select Create New Device (red asterix)
select device type Connector
select COM9 or any other dree COM port
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edwalker
Posts: 27
Joined: Tue May 17, 2005 4:22 am

Re: flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by edwalker » Tue Jan 21, 2020 7:29 pm

Hi, everyone -

Thanks to all who responded. I obtained Voice Attack and am very pleased with it. It's definitely something that everyone who uses VR should know about and evaluate since it accomplishes much, if not all, of the control interaction I was seeking. Take the time to do the speech recognition training, however; it is much more accurate after it is properly calibrated. Very helpful and enjoyable.

There are a few remaining issues that might benefit from some further clarification for others who discover this thread in the future:

1) I am still perplexed about the XCSOAR/LK8000 visibility in the VR field. I checked out OVRdrop and it sounds like it might be something useful for importing an external flight computer. Not being a gamer, I never understood the whole Steam world, always thinking it was some sort of alternative operating system. So let me confirm then that OVRdrop is an executable windows program that can be downloaded to your Condor2 Windows machine and run simultaneously with Condor2. Are you saying that you can then open up the PC version of XCSOAR/LK8000 in a separate window on the PC running Condor2 and OVRdrop will allow you to import the window into the VR field? So one would simply run the PC version of XCSOAR/LK8000 in another window and then move it via OVRdrop? Is it that simple?

2) Most of the people who have documented using OVRdrop seem to use it for streaming video into VR (e.g., entertainment while gaming), but the NMEA connection seems to be the other challenge. The recommendation for HW VSP3 appears to take that on. I downloaded it and ran it as an administrator, but didn't seem to be able to connect Condor with VSP3. Spent a whole morning trying to get it to work.

I also tried VSPE. At first I thought VSP3 and VSPE were the same programs, only a typo, but they are not. The steps provided by rontheglider work well on VSPE to connect Condor with the XCSOAR/LK8000, so that solves that problem. You just start VSPE, point it to a COM port (COM9 for me) and use the Connector option as stated above. It says that VSPE is not freeware, but I got it going without a license fee, so for now it is working.

Thanks in advance for any further comments or clarifications

Ed

cvvs
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Joined: Sun Jan 06, 2019 11:43 pm

Re: flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by cvvs » Wed Jan 22, 2020 2:46 pm

I do not know OVRdrop, but if someone uses it successfully with occulus, let the mode of use be indicated.
This interests me greatly because I only fly in VR under condor.
Also I am looking for someone who would have 2 VR headphones plugged into the same station in order to be able for example to do training or discovery flight under condor, but for that I would launch a new post.

Jeffchrisope
Posts: 15
Joined: Sun Oct 06, 2019 11:21 pm

Re: flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by Jeffchrisope » Fri Jan 24, 2020 7:03 am

I don’t know what the options are for non-Oculus headsets, but the built-in “virtual desktop” feature in the Oculus software allows for importing windows into whatever VR app you have. Check out https://support.oculus.com/166993604065478/ for some info. It is a bit fussy when getting it oriented and positioned properly, but once you’ve done it a few times it’s easy. Have fun!
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Bluejet
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Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2018 4:33 am

Re: flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by Bluejet » Sat Jan 25, 2020 2:45 am

I'm looking at RealityBlender as another option.

https://store.steampowered.com/app/8440 ... y_Blender/

Chromakey/greenscreen windows.

Paul A.

GlenBecker
Posts: 19
Joined: Sun Dec 01, 2019 5:42 pm

Re: flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by GlenBecker » Sat Jan 25, 2020 4:26 am

pckormic wrote:
Sun Jan 19, 2020 12:41 pm
I use too Voice Attack, to ease the burden of the joystick hotas buttons, and I would like to know the commands are used, or a good manual who explain what commands uses the XCSoar with the VoiceAttack program.
Attached are screenshots of what I use. The free version doesn't let me export these as useful programming templates.
va commands.pdf
edwalker wrote:
Tue Jan 21, 2020 7:29 pm
1) I am still perplexed about the XCSOAR/LK8000 visibility in the VR field. I checked out OVRdrop and it sounds like it might be something useful for importing an external flight computer. Not being a gamer, I never understood the whole Steam world, always thinking it was some sort of alternative operating system. So let me confirm then that OVRdrop is an executable windows program that can be downloaded to your Condor2 Windows machine and run simultaneously with Condor2. Are you saying that you can then open up the PC version of XCSOAR/LK8000 in a separate window on the PC running Condor2 and OVRdrop will allow you to import the window into the VR field? So one would simply run the PC version of XCSOAR/LK8000 in another window and then move it via OVRdrop? Is it that simple?
In short, yes.

In less-short: Steam is a software (mostly gaming) distribution platform. You buy OVRdrop, install Steam, install OVRdrop through Steam (it will appear in your library). When you run OVRdrop you get a console that lets you choose and configure how any desktop or program window appears in your VR world. It's a bit fiddly and the user interface isn't intuitive but once you configure your view, you can save the profile to be auto-loaded when OVRdrop starts. I chose it because it doesn't require vr controllers. (I only use VR for seated sims like Condor and iRacing so I never bought the controllers.) There appear to be at least 3 other similar apps but most seem to require controllers. I use a beta version of OVRdrop because I run 3 instances. One for XCSoar and two for each of my full desktop displays. This lets me work with the Windows desktop via the mouse without lifting the HMD off my face. I don't use this feature much. For simple use, I think you're good with the regular release version of OVRdrop. The screenshot attached shows my settings. I position XCSoar between my knees, slightly transparent. It gets larger and goes opaque when I look directly at it.
ovrdrop.png
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brucesailor
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed May 27, 2015 8:57 pm

Re: flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by brucesailor » Sat Jan 25, 2020 5:35 am

My First video, please take mercy :). This is my contribution to Flying Condor Virtual Realty with XCSoar. I've gathered info from a lot of places and thank the contributors who unknowingly helped me. It covers some of the Apps I use and how I am able to place the apps inside the cockpit while flying Condor in Virtual Reality..

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_shMNaO6cC4&t=76s


Bruce D (BD)

cvvs
Posts: 88
Joined: Sun Jan 06, 2019 11:43 pm

Re: flight computer and keyboard integration for VR

Post by cvvs » Tue Jan 28, 2020 2:47 am

I manage to do everything in the video of bruce on the other hand once my window detached this window which should project xcsoar its lights up correctly and a few moments after that turns into a small orange screen with an I.
also in my cockpit in VR I see this little orange screen but no XCsoar

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