Animation Magazine – The different flavors of virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality are now collectively called “XR” as well as “Immersive Technology.” The recent XR Developers Conference in San Francisco covered a broad spectrum of these, ranging from existing products to technology and experiences upcoming in 2020, in categories including healthcare, gaming, entertainment, branding, training and industry partnering.
King County in Washington State identified training as a critical area for its utilities, including a huge water treatment plant. High personnel turnover and complex operating procedures raised the potential for mistakes with dire consequences, including releasing untreated, potentially poisonous sewage water into the nearby bay. Existing paper manuals were found to be too confusing for incoming workers. The plant was losing its experienced workers to retirement, so they would soon be unavailable to mentor new staffers.
Taqtile, Inc. of Seattle stepped in with the Microsoft Hololens, using it to capture how experienced personnel physically operated the plant. After this practical “tribal knowledge” of senior workers had been recorded, it was then passed on to new recruits coming in. The AR-based courses provided trainees graphic, step-by-step training, including exercises to physically activate long rows of daunting buttons and switches while the AR glasses showed them the correct sequences. King County has been very happy with the results of its new “future proofing” XR-based training, and plans to expand it to other operations throughout the County.