Video: Adam Savage from Mythbusters is a notorious geek — he's one of the brains behind technology website Tested.com, and as well as having a background in special effects and fabrication, he's also worked as an animator and graphic designer. On the launch of its new GeForce GTX 1080 graphics card, Nvidia put Savage inside its physics-accelerated Funhouse virtual reality tech demo.
Savage was a big fan of the graphics inside the experience — he talked up the significance of the reflections on the swords within the Funhouse's balloon-popping challenge, where the physics engine is able to determine the difference between the flat of the sword and its sharp edges and point. His favourite, though, was the physics simulation of viscosity on the squirt guns, where one stream of liquid affected the other realistically and in real-time.
VR Funhouse uses a lot of graphics and compute horsepower. When we tried it at Nvidia's GTX 1080 announcement, each top-of-the-line machine was running not one but threecards — two for graphics on the HTC Vive's high-res, high-refresh-rate display, and one purely for physics compute. So it's not the kind of thing that you'll be able to experience in your computer chair or living room any time soon, and that's why it's a little bit special.
NVIDIA VR Funhouse highlights the fusion of state of the art graphics and accurate physics modeling in a virtual reality experience, complete with, midway challenges, arcade fun and table games. NVIDIA VR Funhouse is an excellent example of how VR application and experience developers can use NVIDIA VR Works and PhysX together to take immersion in VR to new heights. Performance gains from VRWorks graphics technologies can be used to achieve more accurate audio with VRWorks Audio and realistic physics modeling using NVIDIA PhysX. Key technologies featured include Destruction, FleX (including soft bodies, cloth and fluids), Flow and Hairworks from our POhysX SDL libary, paired with VR SLI and VRWorks Audio from our VR Works SDK.