Chimera Reader

Experience the simple pleasure of reading a good book.


Chimera Reader is a software application designed to allow a user with access to a VR headset to read books in virtual spaces. Users will have the functionality of a Kindle, with the peace and tranquility of a private library available anywhere.

Core Features:

  • A simple and easy to use interface for reading your favorite book
  • Cozy reading space with optional music
  • The ability to add your own books, or browse a selection of popular classics

Notes

  • Chimera Reader is only compatible with Android 4.4 (KitKat) at this time.
  • To add your own books, put the desired ePub files in the 'Book' folder in the phones root directory.
  • Chimera Reader supports both bluetooth controllers and the touchpad.

Controls

Touch Controls

  • Swipe Up: To open the menu
  • Swipe Down: To close the menu
  • Tap: To select menu items
  • Swipe Left/Right: Turn the book page forward or back

Bluetooth Controller

Notes:

  • We use Xbox controller mappings (so your X button may be different from ours)
  • We used a Nyko Playpad as our development controller, so compatibility with other controllers is not guaranteed
  • There is currently no ability to select menu items with the controller
  • X Button - Open the menu
  • A Button: Turn page back
  • B Button: Turn page right
  • Left Trigger: Move the book away from camera
  • Right Trigger: Move the book towards camera
  • Left Bumper: Scale text down
  • Right Bumper: Scale text up

Inspiration

Chimera Reader was designed to extend the capabilities of the Gear VR as a multimedia tool. The Gear VR already has awesome support for video content, games, and even immersive audio; but there is little ability to experience the awesome world of books. We were immediately drawn to the idea of a private, personal library as a space to read - VR is, after all, a fantastic way to get away. As amazing as devices like the Kindle are for making reading material accessible, they are unable to help block out the distractions of every day life. We see the Gear VR as a doorway into a private realm, where users can go to really focus on the content at hand - in this case, books. We're excited by the potential that an app like this has for recreation, but also for students and researchers who might want an easy way to dive into their reading material. In the end, we see Chimera Reader as the first step towards enabling virtual reading in our everyday lives.

Milestone History

Milestone 2 Progress:

  • 3D room development and optimization
  • Saving and reloading progress in a book
  • Gear VR touch-pad controls
  • Font support, re-scaling, and re-sizing
  • Translation of the reading surface

Milestone 3 Progress:

  • UI for options menu
  • Improved rendering performance on device
  • Ambient audio
  • General improvements to text readability

Final Progress:

  • ePub file support
  • Bug fixes galore
  • Room polish
  • Loading of personal books

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