Free and Early Release of Mixed-Reality App that Recreates Battle of Gettysburg
Gettysburg: A Nation Divided has pushed its launch date and waived download fees to assist teachers, parents, and students
Parents and teachers are in search of educational solutions as millions of students are now learning from home. To help and expand their choices, a new mixed-reality app that recreates the Battle of Gettysburg is launching early. Normally priced at $12.99, the app will be free of charge for a limited time.
QuantumERA‘s Gettysburg: A Nation Divided, is a mobile experience that envelopes students in the battle as it unfolds around them. Narrated by actor Scott Eastwood, the app’s immersive scenes transport users to 1863 with 360-degree views and avatars of men and women who were involved in the battle. Included is an artifact scavenger hunt with the ability to earn points. The student’s involvement and interactivity provide a better understanding of what happened during the turning point of the Civil War.
“Working from home while schooling our two children has been overwhelming,” said mother of two, Laura Aplin. The Gettysburg app ”has been an educational retreat for our kids. Not only are they learning about one of the most important battles in American history, but they are also able to travel through time and outside of our home. They’re not just watching something, they’re part of the experience. The added blessing is that it allows me to dedicate more time to work knowing that the kids are engaged in something productive.”
Gettysburg: A Nation Divided unites historical scholarship and mixed-reality platforms to transform students from being in the audience to becoming part of the experience. This is a critical point of engagement in a world of video games and social media, where audiences are craving highly visual and interactive experiences.
“The world we live in has changed so dramatically in a matter of weeks,” said Lane Traylor, CEO of QuantumERA. “The QuantumERA team wanted to help by waiving fees to help children learn and also escape for a while. We also want to support the millions of teachers and parents who are undertaking multiple roles, easing some of the stress that comes with navigating their new norms.”
QuantumERA is a leading content creation company that creates mixed reality experiences. They are most well-known for their award-winning Experience Real History™ brand that recreates the Battle of the Alamo through augmented reality apps and products.
Teachers and students can find free resources for hours of engagement and fun at PerspectivesXR.org, QuantumERA’s education partner.
Free downloads of Gettysburg: A Nation Divided are available in The Apple App Store for a limited time. The BETA version of this app, optimized for Apple iPads, is now available. Mobile optimization for other Android devices coming soon.
Starlight Children’s Foundation, an organization whose mission is to create moments of joy and comfort for hospitalized kids and their families, unveiled todayits newest initiative, Starlight XperienceTMvirtual reality, a groundbreaking new technology program that offers millions of seriously ill children a fun and exciting way to explore the world and beyond through the magic of VR.
To watch a video on Starlight Xperience and how it helps kids, please seehere.
Built for the Lenovo Mirage Solo with Daydream, Starlight Xperience features a state-of-the-art and hospital-ready headset that comes preloaded with age-appropriate and dynamic content geared toward entertainment and distraction for hospitalized kids,which has been specifically modified to meet strict infection safety protocols for use in hospital settings.Pre-loaded content includes educational field trips to exotic locations through Google Expeditions and Street View, fun interactive stories likeStar Wars: Droid Repair Bayby ILMxLAB, and Lola and the Giant, popular apps such as Ocean Rift and Hello Mars, and meditation exercises and therapeutic games such as Relax VR, which allows the patient to escape into beautiful environments.
Starlight Xperience was created in collaboration with Founding Sponsor,Star Wars: Force for Change, the charitable initiative from Lucasfilm and The Walt Disney Company that harnesses the power ofStar Warsto empower and improve the lives of children around the world. Through grantfunding provided by The Walt Disney Company and Niagara Cares – the philanthropic arm of Niagara Bottling – as well as charitable donations from grassroots donors, Starlight Xperience will be provided at no cost to Starlight’s network of more than 800 children’s hospitals and other health care facilities across the US.
“We believe Starlight Xperience has the potential to transform the hospital experience for millions of seriously ill children and their families,” said Chris Helfrich, CEO of Starlight Children’s Foundation. “We’re thrilled to stand beside The Walt Disney Company, Google, Lenovo and Niagara Cares in unveiling this exciting new program, which is the latest evolution in our 35-year history of bringing innovative entertainment technologies to hospitalized kids.”
“Providing these unique entertainment experiences reflects our commitment to bring comfort during what can be difficult times for kids and families. This is part of our Disney Team of Heroes initiative, which includes a $100 million commitment to children’s hospitals,” said Elissa Margolis, senior vice president, Enterprise Social Responsibility for The Walt Disney Company. “The collaboration with Google and Lenovo is the perfect blend of technology and content that we’ll be able to deliver to kids during their hospital stay.”
“Our goal has always been to create virtual reality experiences that are accessible, useful, and relevant to as many people as possible,” said Amit Singh, VP of Business & Operations for AR & VR at Google. “Starlight Xperience is a shining example of that goal coming to life in a really great way. We’re thrilled to be able to support Starlight in bringing transporting VR experiences to hospitalized children across the country.”
“We are thrilled to be working with Starlight and Google to bring technology to hospitalized children in their time of need. Helping to provide a solution for the children and their families allows us to truly make a difference for the better,” said Gunjan Shah, general manager for North America Smart Devices at Lenovo.
Starlight Xperience was developed in part through a series of grants provided by Starlight to the CHARIOT program (short for Childhood Anxiety Reduction through Innovation and Technology) at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford. CHARIOT implements new technologies in the hospital that are nontraditional yet familiar to children to engage and distract them during stressful or painful procedures, keeping clinical usage in mind and improving upon the typical hospital experience. This past summer, Starlight Xperience was soft launched and tested at five children’s hospitals: Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford, Children’s Hospital Colorado, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare in St. Paul, Minn., and Texas Children’s Hospital.
“At Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare, virtual reality has been a fantastic addition for our patients,” said Chantel Barney, Ph.D., a clinical scientist who leads Gillette’s VR program. “In some instances, we’ve been able to curb the anxiety and fears our kids typically experience during procedures such as blood draws, transfusions, wound cleanings, casting and more. It’s a wonderful distraction for kids and parents alike.”
“We’re proud to support Starlight Xperience and look forward to bringing smiles to the faces of hospitalized children through this educational and inspirational program,” said Andrew Peykoff II, President and CEO, Niagara Bottling. “This technology makes learning fun and we’re excited to expand the program to even more children.”
Thanks to the grants provided by The Walt Disney Company and Niagara Cares, in addition to the generosity of charitable donations from individuals, Starlight is on track to deliver up to 1,000 Starlight Xperience kits to its network of hospital partners by the end of 2018, with a goal of doubling that by the end of 2019. A donation to Starlightwillentertain, educate and inspire hospitalized kids across the US through stimulating immersive experiences that transport children from the hospital to any place in the world – or beyond – through the magic of virtual reality.
ABOUT STARLIGHT CHILDREN’S FOUNDATION Starlight creates moments of joy and comfort for hospitalized kids and their families. For 35 years, Starlight’s programs have positively impacted more than 60 million critically, chronically and terminally ill or injured children in the US, Canada, Australia and the UK. With your help, more kids and their families will enjoy Starlight Gowns, Starlight Fun Centers and other Starlight programs at a children’s hospital or facility near you. Support Starlight’s work by visiting www.starlight.organd by following Starlight onFacebook,InstagramandTwitter.
ABOUT STAR WARS: FORCE FOR CHANGE Star Wars: Force for Change, a charitable initiative from Lucasfilm and Disney, harnesses the strength of Star Wars to empower and improve the lives of children around the world. Since 2014, it was inspired by Star Wars fans, and the countless hours they have dedicated to philanthropy over the past four decades. To date, over $16 million has been raised for charitable causes around the world on behalf of Star Wars: Force for Change. With a bright future ahead, and new Star Wars stories to be told, Force for Change aims to continue collaborating with causes and encouraging others to be forces for change in their own community. To learn more, please visit ForceForChange.com.
ABOUT THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY The Walt Disney Company, together with its subsidiaries, is a diversified worldwide entertainment company with operations in four business segments: Media Networks; Studio Entertainment; Parks, Experiences and Consumer Products; and Direct-to-Consumer and International. Disney is a Dow 30 company and had annual revenues of $55.1 billion in its Fiscal Year 2017.
ABOUT LENOVO Lenovo (HKSE: 992) (ADR: LNVGY) is a US$45 billion Fortune Global 500 company and a global technology leader in driving Intelligent Transformation through smart devices and infrastructure that create the best user experience. Lenovo manufactures one of the world’s widest portfolios of connected products, including smartphones, tablets, PCs (ThinkPad, Yoga, Lenovo Legion), data centers and workstations as well as AR/VR devices and smart home/office solutions. Lenovo works to inspire the difference in everyone and build a smarter future where everyone thrives. Follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Weibo, read about the latest news via our Storyhub, or visit our website at http://www.lenovo.com/.
ABOUT NIAGARA CARES Niagara Cares, a philanthropic arm of Niagara Bottling, is committed to supporting local and national community initiatives serving children and families in need by engaging stakeholders and investing its resources. Niagara Cares efforts include national strategic partnerships, local community grants, employee engagement, volunteerism and the Andrew D. Peykoff, Sr. Scholarship Program. For more information, visitwww.niagarawater.com/niagara-cares.
NEW YORK, NY (June 27, 2018) – Republic Records announces the hire of Ken “DURO” as SVP, A&R. This announcement comes from Rob Stevenson and Wendy Goldstein.
Based at the company’s New York City headquarters, “Duro” will focus on identifying, signing, cultivating, and introducing new talent throughout the worlds of hip-hop, rap, urban, and R&B.
About the hire, Mr. Stevenson comments, “Duro knows records inside and out as he’s mixed many of the groundbreaking records influencing this next wave of artists. His experience from behind the mixing board and as an executive give him a unique insight into the creative and real-world challenges facing artists in this evolving landscape.”
“I’ve been a fan of and have worked with Duro for many years,” says Ms. Goldstein. “He’s the consummate music visionary whose talent extends from creation to marketing and promotion. It’s an exciting moment for our team to welcome him to the fold.”
“Republic is truly a powerhouse,” says “Duro.” “I have an immense amount of respect for [Co-Founders] Monte and Avery Lipman, Wendy, Rob, and the entire team. I’d love to add that studio perspective to the label’s A&R process. I’m excited to find the next round of Republic superstars and work with them to create a new generation of classic records.
“Duro” remains a multi-faceted music industry magnate. As an in-demand engineer, he has garnered a total of six GRAMMY® Awards for his work on “Empire State of Mind” by Jay-Z & Alicia Keys, Erykah Badu’s Baduizm, Will Smith’s Big Willie Style, Jay-Z’s Vol. 2…Hard Knock Life, Ashanti’s Ashanti, and Usher’s “U Don’t Have To Call.” As an entrepreneur, he has co-founded and run Desert Storm Records since 1997. Its roster includes multiplatinum rap luminary Fabolous and more. For over two decades, he has been intrinsic to the fabric of hip-hop music and culture.
Hidden Content launches with world premiere of The Caretaker at Tribeca Film Festival developing slate of VR films.
Filmmakers Jacob Wasserman, Adam Donald and Ant Gentile announced today the formation of Hidden Content, a full-service virtual reality. Their first project was unveiled yesterday at the Tribeca Film Festival with the world premiere of their narrative 360 Cinema project The Caretaker, the first installment of an original horror anthology series.
Created by Wasserman and Donald as well as filmmaker Nicolas Pesce (The Eyes Of My Mother, Piercing), The Caretaker stars Adelaide Clemens, Tom Lipinski, Clara Wong and Diana Agostini, was produced by Max Born and Schuyler Weiss and executive produced by Gentile and Kimberly Parker. The pilot was a co-production with RealMotion Inc. and audio services were provided by Hobo Audio.
Hidden Content has also teamed with film producer and financier Max Born to produce and acquire a slate of VR films and series, as well as develop a VR/AR distribution platform.
Wasserman, Donald and Gentile have been working in the virtual reality and 360 cinema space for some time, having produced high profile VR commercials and branded content experiences, including Samsung’s “Anatomy of Ski” 4D VR Experience for the 2018 Winter Olympics, featuring Olympic gold medalist downhill skier Bode Miller and “360 Meals,” a journey inside celebrity chef Daniel Boulud’s Michelin-starred flagship restaurant, Daniel.
The trio’s first narrative effort, the interactive VR thriller Broken Night
starring Emily Mortimer and Alessandro Nivola, premiered at Tribeca Film Festival 2017 and was also featured at Cannes NEXT 2017.
Hidden Content and Max Born are currently in development on three additional VR genre series, and are in talks with outside creators to acquire new content to build out their 2018 project slate.
* * *
The Hidden Content Team
Jacob Wasserman has produced notable and critically acclaimed films including James White
(Winner of Sundance NEXT Audience Award, AFI Audience Award), The Eyes of My Mother (Sundance NEXT 2016 Official Selection), virtual reality film Broken Night (2017 Cannes NEXT) with his latest feature films TYREL and Piercing premiering at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival. His most recent VR narrative film The Caretaker , which he co-wrote and directed alongside horror director Nicolas Pesce (The Eyes Of My Mother, Piercing), will have its premiere at the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival.
Wasserman has also produced and directed several award winning commercials, music videos and virtual reality films for clients including The North Face, Gatorade, The Wall Street Journal, Sony Music and Samsung. He a founding partner of Virtual Reality production company, Hidden Content and is currently based in Los Angeles, California.
Adam Donald is a director who continues to expand his work and collaborations across all genres from Film and Television to Virtual Reality. He is a founding partner in Hidden Content, and is currently based in Brooklyn, New York. Donald has worked with the world’s top agencies and directed story-telling campaigns for many global brands, including The North Face, Gatorade, Sony, SKYY Vodka, NBA, Budweiser, and American Express, featuring world class artists and athletes Jay Z, Pharell, Diplo, Courtney Love, Venus Williams, Usain Bolt and Elton John, among others.
He is the recipient of several industry awards, including The New Directors Showcase, Clio Advertising Awards, D&AD Awards, as well as VMA nominations. In addition to his commercial work, Donald recently directed a television pilot for TruTV and co-directed the experimental VR dance film, The Gate. This is the second year he has had a film selected for both Tribeca and Cannes Film festivals.
Ant Gentile has worked in audio and video production for over 10 years, serving as creative director and producer for clients including Samsung, ABC, Interscope Records, Atlantic Records, CenturyLink, McGraw-Hill Education, Clearasil, Cengage, 451 Media, and Sun Chemical. Wanting the ability to offer full-service production, Gentile opened a state-of-the-art audio production facility in midtown Manhattan, allowing him to score, mix and sound design projects for his clients, as well as start a music publishing and podcast division.
In addition, Gentile has executive produced two feature length documentaries and has raised significant strategic funding for both entertainment projects and tech start-ups. With a passion for storytelling in new media, as well as relationships tech and VC companies, Gentile joined with commercial and narrative filmmakers Adam Donald and Jake Wasserman and producing VR content under a new banner, Hidden Content.
Nicolas Pesce’s debut feature The Eyes Of My Mother
was one of the most critically acclaimed horror films of 2016. It premiered at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival in the NEXT section and was released theatrically in the U.S. by Magnolia Pictures.
In 2013, Pesce developed an animated series starring Malcolm MacDowell, J.K. Simmons, and Colin Quinn and most recently he completed his second feature film Piercing ,
based on the Ryu Murakami novel by the same title. Piercing premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival in the Midnight section and stars Christopher Abbott, Mia Wasikowska, Maria Dizzia, and Marin Ireland. Nick is writing and will direct the upcoming The Grudge for Good Universe and Ghost House Pictures.
Pesce is a graduate of New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and currently lives in Los Angeles.
Born is a film producer and financier and his production of Josh Mond’s James White was the start of what would be a successful collaboration with Borderline Films, with whom he went on to produce Nicolas Pesce’s debut feature The Eyes Of My Mother. Shortly thereafter he developed
Piercing with Pesce and Borderline, which Pesce directed and premiered at Sundance 2018.
In 2017, Born collaborated with Sebastián Silva on his film TYREL,
which premiered in competition at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival. He is currently developing both adapted and original content with Pesce, Silva, and Antonio Campos of Borderline. More recently, Born has refocused on development financing and has already started to build a small library of IP to adapt with more filmmakers.
Also in 2018, Born produced a VR short called The Caretaker,
which will have its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival and screen in Cannes NEXT. Along with production and post-production partners in this emerging medium, Born is looking to create what would essentially be a small VR studio.
Three-time Grammy Award-winning and multi-platinum-selling artist Pentatonix have launched a pre-order for their forthcoming release – PTX PRESENTS: TOP POP, VOL. I – out April 13th via RCA Records. Pre-order here.
Pentatonix has sold nearly 10 million albums in worldwide consumption and performed for hundreds of thousands of fans at their sold out shows across the globe. Their YouTube channel boasts more than 14.6 million subscribers, yielding over 3.1 billion video views. Their 2015 self-titled album is certified gold after debuting #1 on Billboard’s 200.
Additionally, nine of their albums reached the top 10 on Billboard’s 200 chart (two albums reaching #1) and received multiple RIAA certifications for multi-platinum, platinum and gold selling albums and singles. Most recently, “Mary, Did You Know?” and “Hallelujah” were certified platinum, while the Pentatonix original, “Can’t Sleep Love,” was certified gold. The group has had two holiday specials on NBC, released their tour documentary – On My Way Home – in 2015 and appeared in the feature film, Pitch Perfect 2.
Most recently, Pentatonix released a deluxe version of their certified platinum 2016 holiday album A Pentatonix Christmas Deluxe and wrapped their sold-out A Pentatonix Christmas Tour in December.
North American Tour Dates:
ABOUT LIVE NATION ENTERTAINMENT
Live Nation Entertainment (NYSE: LYV) is the world’s leading live entertainment company comprised of global market leaders: Ticketmaster, Live Nation Concerts, and Live Nation Media & Sponsorship. For additional information, visit here.
Those who pre-order the album will receive “Havana” and “New Rules x Are You That Somebody?” instantly.
The quintet’s arrangement of “New Rules x Are You That Somebody?” mashes up the Dua Lipa hit with the Aaliyah classic. Watch the music video here. Additionally, the video for the Pentatonix cover of Camila Cabello’s “Havana” has surpassed 10 million views.
In concert with the album’s pre-order launch, tickets for the group’s 39-city North American tour are available today at 12pm local time. All fans who purchase tickets online through May 31, 2018 will receive a digital download of PTX PRESENTS: TOP POP, VOL. 1.
Tonight, Beth Ditto returns to her home state of Arkansas to kick off a North American tour in support of Fake Sugar (Virgin Records), her solo debut album. After this eveningߣs show at Revolution Music Room in Little Rock, sheߣll head to Nashville, TN for a performance at the Mercy Lounge tomorrow, March 8. The run includes shows at New Yorkߣs Brooklyn Steel (March 14), The Fonda Theatre in Los Angeles, CA (March 23) and Wonder Ballroom in Portland, OR (March 27).
Ditto will perform on NBC Late Night with Seth Meyers on Tuesday, March 13. NPR has hailed her as the force-of-nature performer best known for fronting the pop-punk group Gossip. In a four-star live review, The Guardian said, Ditto alternates between infectiously warm, wisecracking comic and soul-baring torch singer.
The New York Times praised Ditto as a powerhouse singer and noted that the albums songs have stomp and girl-group melodies, Southernisms in their lyrics and garage-rock swagger. The Wall Street Journal included Fake Sugar in its round-up of The Best Music of 2017 and observed, Great pop for grownups is a rare commodity BethDittodelivers. Paperchristened Ditto rock’s homecoming queen while People highlighted Fake Sugar as one of its Picks, observing, Whether it’s a glittering stomper (Oo La La) or stripped-down Stevie Nicks homage (the title track), Ditto shines throughout
Her cover of I‘m Alive written by Tommy James and first recorded in 1968 by R&B legend Johnny Thunder has been licensed by Max Factor for an international advertising campaign. In addition to releasing six acclaimed albums with the Gossip, Ditto has recorded with such artists as Blondie and disco legend Cerrone, collaborated with Jean Paul Gaultier on her eponymous plus-sized luxury clothing line, modeled for Marc Jacobs. She appears in the new Gus Van Sant film, Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far On Foot, which recently premiered at the Sundance Film Festival.
2016 and 2017 have been strange years for smartphone giants that seem to show no signs of backing out on every front. From Samsung‘s gadgets being seen as potential explosive bombs to Apple admitting its dirty tactics in slowing down its older phones for better sales, from Nokia making a valiant return with the 3310 to Google releasing Pixel. But before techies and phone savants declare their opinions on the best phone for the year as 2017 comes to an end, it’s important to review two of the most happening smartphones that had gripped everyone in hype.
IT’S ALL IN THE SPECIFICATIONS
The iPhone X debuted with a staggering size of 43.6 × 70.9 × 7.7 mm (5.65 × 2.79 × 0.30 inches) showing an absent home screen button when compared to the Note 8’s size of 162.5 × 74.8 × 8.6 mm (6.40 × 2.95 × 0.34 inches).
Initial advertisements by Apple boasted several of the phone’s features such as a stunning 6.3-inch Super AMOLED display that shows a beautiful 2,436 × 1,125 pixels (458 ppi) home screen. Apple wasn’t just betting on visual appeal to be the main selling point but it seems that the new animated emoji( called animoji) clearly took the stage at the keynote speech.
The phone runs on an A11 Bionic 64-bit architecture with a 2716 mAh battery that Apple promises to power 12 hours of internet, 13 hours of video playback, 21 hours of talk time and up to 60 hours of audio playback. Cameras have seen a vast improvement in the latest release with a M10 motion co-processor being coupled with a dual 12MP rear (both with OIS) and a 7MP True Depth front that captures images up to 4K at 60fps. Video making too has been augmented with users now being able to shoot 1080p at 240fps. Beneath the silver or space Gray exterior the, the provides up to 64GB or 256GB of storage space and the newest iOS 11 framework.
All this for a standard price of nearly a $1000 which is likely to increase in the coming months as Apple hints the possible release of more color variants and even a rumored iPhone 9.
The Note 8 too isn’t much far in that regard when it comes to technology. While slightly heavier than its counterpart, the phone still takes the lead with a 162.5 × 74.8 × 8.6 mm (6.40 × 2.95 × 0.34 inches) size with a 6.3-inch Super AMOLED display and a 2,960 × 1,440 (522 ppi) resolution. While the rear camera is no different than the iPhone ‘s12 MP feature, the front has an 8 MP capability. Early reviews stated that the phone hosts features to create videos at 4K at 30fps and 720p at 240fps. The Android 7.1.1 Nougat OS with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 (U.S.)/Samsung Exynos 8895 (international) processor allows for 22 hours of talk time, 13 hours of internet, 16 hours of video playback, and up to 74 hours of audio playback.
Available at three storage spaces of 64GB (U.S.) 128, 256GB (International) and two colors of midnight black and orchid gray, the phone will cost buyers $ 930.
VERDICT— WHAT THE PUBLIC HAS TO SAY
The iPhone X launch brought some radical changes to its generation of smartphones which were welcomed by some but ridiculed and criticized by most. Despite showing some amazing sales figures when compared to the iPhone 7 which was considered to be no less than disastrous on the public front, the Note 8 still holds a competitive edge against the former.
Buyers are specifically amazed at the uses for Google Assistant and the S pen along with several other features such as Bixy, peripheral ports and its special lock-in procedures.
However, newer versions of the Note 8 have attracted some hindrance after users reported that they were unable to charge even on plugging after using them for the first time. Users are also dissatisfied with facial detection, screen burning and short battery lives on the latest iPhone. And the company too seems to be on thin ice as it revealed details about slowing down ageing phones which took a big crunch at its stock prices.
But only time will tell if either company can maintain a stronghold of their investors and consumers as the year comes to another end.
Photo credit: Stuff.tv
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