Author Archives: Jeff Nusz

Dance Tonite, an ever-changing VR collaboration by LCD Soundsystem and fans

Sometimes beautiful things happen when worlds collide. In 2002, LCD Soundsystem mashed together electronic dance music and punk rock—an unlikely pairing that brought fun and humanity to two genres that had moved away from their experimental beginnings. I’ve always admired the band’s combination of minimalism, honesty, and contagious energy—and today I’m pleased to introduce Dance Tonite, a VR collaboration celebrating LCD Soundsystem’s latest single, “Tonite.”


Dance Tonite takes an exuberant, unexpected approach to virtual reality. It’s a dance party. And it’s also a dance viewing party. In it, you go from room to room experiencing a series of dance performances created entirely by fans. All choreography was recorded using room-scale VR setups, which use headset and controller tracking to reflect your physical movements in your virtual environment. Instead of just mirroring your movements, we turn your room-scale VR kit into a DIY motion capture tool; if you have one, you can add your own moves to the party.

This video might help to explain.

Individual performers in Dance Tonite are represented by simple moving objects—just a cone and two cylinders. Even though they’re all represented by the same basic shapes, the experience captures the idiosyncrasies of each person's movements. The constraints encourage creativity and diversity, while the overall experience expands and changes with each new contribution.


Dance Tonite was designed to work across different devices. If you have Daydream View, you’re on stage watching the performance move around you.


If you happen to have a room-scale VR headset, go on and add your moves to the experience.


And if you don’t have a VR headset, not to worry. You can still watch the experience from a bird's-eye view with the ability to click on any performer's head to see it from their perspective.


Dance Tonite uses WebVR, a new open standard that brings high-quality VR content to the web. That means that you can enter the experience through a single URL–no apps or downloads needed. As developers, we were able to create a scalable experience using web infrastructure and a single codebase.

Dance Tonite was directed by artists Jonathan Puckey and Moniker, in collaboration with the Data Arts Team— a specialized group within Google exploring the ongoing dialog between artists and emerging technologies. If you’d like to learn more about how this project was made, we’ve released the code open source. You can also read about our process and learnings using an experimental technology (WebVR) in a new medium (VR).

Dance Tonite was directed by artists Jonathan Puckey and Moniker, in collaboration with the Data Arts Team— a specialized group within Google exploring the ongoing dialog between artists and emerging technologies. If you’d like to learn more about how this project was made, we’ve released the code open source. You can also read about our process and learnings using an experimental technology (WebVR) in a new medium (VR).

See you at Dance Tonite. Remember to dance like nobody’s watching.*

*Millions of people are watching.

Experience virtual reality art in your browser

Two weeks ago, we introduced Tilt Brush, a new app that enables artists to use virtual reality to paint the 3D space around them. Part virtual reality, part physical reality, it can be difficult to describe how it feels without trying it firsthand. Today, we bring you a little closer to the experience of painting with Tilt Brush using the powers of the web in a new Chrome Experiment titled Virtual Art Sessions.
Virtual Art Sessions lets you observe six world-renowned artists as they develop blank canvases into beautiful works of art using Tilt Brush. Each session can be explored from start to finish from any angle, including the artist’s perspective – all viewable right from the browser.

Participating artists include illustrator Christoph Niemann, fashion illustrator Katie Rodgers, sculptor Andrea Blasich, installation artist Seung Yul Oh, automotive concept designer Harald Belker, and street artist duo Sheryo & Yok. The artists’ unique approaches to this new medium become apparent when seeing them work inside their Tilt Brush creations. Watch this behind-the-scenes video to hear what the artists had to say about their experience:
Virtual Art Sessions makes use of Google Chrome’s V8 Javascript engine for high-performance processing power to render large volumes of data in real time. This includes point cloud data of the artist’s physical form, 3D geometry data of the artwork, and position data of the VR controllers. It also relies on Chrome’s support of WebM video and WebGL to produce the 360° representations of the artists and artwork – the artist portrayals alone require the browser to draw over 200,000 points at 30 times a second. For a deeper look, read the technical case study or browse the project code that is available open source from the site’s tech page.

We hope this experiment provides a window into the world of painting in virtual reality using Tilt Brush. We are excited by this new medium and hope the experience leaves you feeling the same. Visit to start exploring.

Source: Google Chrome