5 October 2020

World Space Week - WebXR Solar System playground


Normally at this time of the year we'd be down at The Hive in Worcester for the BIS World Space Day event - the largest of its kind in the UK. Of course with COVID19 that's not happening, so here instead is a little "work in progress" of a solar system playground in WebXR. You can't view this on the web, but if you have a VR headset that is WebXR compatible (most of them now) you can use the headsets web browser to go to:

  • https://www.daden.co.uk/webxr

Then follow the Solar System Playground link from that page to the WebXR page, click on the Enter VR button, and immerse yourself in the Solar System.

This is a quick tour of what you should see and what you can do:

The main features are:

  • Set sizes of planets to linear or log scale
  • Set orbit sizes to linear or log scale
  • Just grab hold of a planet to bring it up close to look at it, and turn it over in your "hands"
  • Display labels on planets and/or audio naming as you click on them
  • Randomise planet positions, sort them into order, and then have your solution scored
  • Hide the floor (not for those with vertigo!)
  • Move with joystick or by clicking on the footsteps
  • Set sizes and orbit sizes to "real" values, scaled to the sun. This make things VERY small and VERY spread out. There's a guideline to help you find all the planets, and Pluto (and maybe Neptune) might actually be outside of the "star" bubble - feels very otherworldly that far out!

Note that this is still a work-in-progress and may have a few bugs, but with World Space Week happening and lots of us in some sort of lockdown we thought it a good time to get it out!

Any bug reports or comments for improvements in the comment or by email to wsw@daden.co.uk.

Enjoy, and hopefully we can meet physically for World Space Week next year!

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