The first surprise of the Oculus Connect virtual reality (VR) developer conference in Hollywood, California has been revealed. Earlier today event host Oculus VR announced that the first development kit (DK1) of its Oculus Rift head-mounted mounted display (HMD) was now open source. This means that anyone can now download the company’s full list of workings on the device and use them how they see fit.
An entire list of schematics, firmware and mechanical documents used for the creation of DK1 are now available over on Github. The site also contains detailed instructions of how to download the included firmware. Developers and enthusiasts might choose to use this information to creation their own DK1, if not mod existing ones with better components and new features. Essentially, it’s up to the user to decide what to do with them.
This isn’t the first time that Oculus VR has made something open source. In July 2014 the company purchased C++ videogame networking engine RakNet and immediately released it for all to use. The company has pledged to remain ‘open’ in this way, sharing its work with developers and fans in order to keep them up to speed with VR development. Of course, the company’s most recent HMD, the second development kit (DK2), keeps its schematics under lock and key for now. But perhaps once the consumer version of the device is released an open source DK2 is also a possibility.
The first Oculus Rift development kit may seem like a relic now to some with its lower resolution screen and positional tracking. That said it will be remembered fondly for helped to, quite literally, kickstart the revival of the the technology. VRFocus will continue to follow Oculus VR and the Oculus Rift going forward reporting back with any further updates. Keep checking back for the latest on Oculus Connect.