HoloStudy: Mixed Reality Content Creation
Russia’s 3D Project for the HoloLens
Alexey Yakubov is on a mission to revolutionize education by empowering students to, as he puts it, feel the science at their fingertips, using mixed reality or MR to immerse them in the learning experience. And working with a team of like-minded change agents, he is well on his way to fulfilling that mission with HoloStudy, a trailblazing educational project for Microsoft HoloLens.
As the CEO and Founder of the Russian-based company HoloGroup, Yakubov believes that MR offers a truly effective approach for making science education come alive, by combining the real with the digital world to create a truly visual and interactive learning experience.
In fact, by dynamically interweaving three-dimensional holographic images, graphics and data, onto real-world environments, this technology provides students with a more sophisticated understanding of complex scientific concepts that are difficult to convey through textbooks or lectures. Concepts like the structure of atoms…the thermal properties of matter and the interrelated functions of the human body.
In getting its HoloStudy project underway, Yakubov and his team are busy developing a series of lessons in geology, chemistry, physics and biology…all of which are designed with the help of experienced teachers and scientists in leading universities and think tanks. Each lesson is taught by a virtual professor…and includes tests, lab work and holographic games to strengthen the learning experience. What’s more, students and teachers can simultaneously engage with the same hologram, as well as with each other…which makes it a perfect tool for both collaborative and authentic learning.
Equally impressive, to make these lessons universally available, Yakubov and his team have launched a crowdfunding campaign to subsidize development costs…so they may offer the content for free wherever possible. Thus far, the HoloStudy project is earning accolades all around. Its initial offerings are rated among Microsoft’s top eight applications for HoloLens and the first Russian language app to ever be uploaded to the Microsoft Store.
It has also won two international awards…Time of Innovations – 2016 and best project in the 2017 StartUpStep contest…while attracting plenty of media attention worldwide. So, it is most definitely a mixed reality project to watch in the months and years ahead.
Step back in time as you walk through an ancient building or jump into a painting to experience life in the time period depicted. Venture inside a molecule or maneuver about inside a human body. These are just a few experiences that mixed reality technology is providing students worldwide.
For these experiences to exist, however, requires significant development and content creation. For example, expertise is needed in software like Unity, a cross-platform game engine primarily used to develop both three-dimensional and two-dimensional video games and simulations.
If an institution chooses not to develop their own resources, the alternative is to look externally for content or find companies that can provide it to them. Equipment can be costly and some content is quite expensive.
Companies like the Holo Group, a Russian-based company, are stepping up to fill the gap at not cost to institutions. The HoloStudy is a revolutionary educational project that serves those looking for 3D content designed for the Microsoft HoloLens.
How HoloLens Can be Used in Learning & Education
Holo Group CEO, Alex Yakubov, and his team have been on a mission to make sure educators have what they need in the way of three-dimensional holographic images, graphics, and data to teach with mixed reality. Supported through crowdsourcing, the HoloStudy project provides free mixed reality resources including lessons with labs and tests as well as holographic games.
Over the last couple of years, Yakubov and his team have been developing a series of lessons in chemistry, physics, geology and biology. Each lesson is delivered by a 3D animated virtual professor and is complete with tests, laboratory work, and holographic games that reinforce the lesson’s outcome.
HoloStudy Biology is a joint project created with Nanobot Medical Animation Studio. Lessons are designed to guide students in a deep understanding of fundamental principles underlying biology from the cellular level to organisms and entire ecosystems. With the 3D holograms, students can explore cell structure and functions, classifications of a living things, and genetics.
HoloStudy’s holographic Physics course is focused on helping students to uncover the secrets of physical laws and the forces of nature. Lessons include The Structure and States of Matter, Mechanics, Thermodynamics, Electromagnetism Quantum, Particle and Nuclear Physics.
HoloStudy Geology covers common aspects such as structure of the Earth, its composition, and physical properties and has been rated among the Top 10 best applications since the Microsoft HoloLens headset became available, according a Windows Report.
“What makes mixed reality particularly well-suited for a learning environment is that teachers and students are able to see and interact with the same hologram at the same time, as well as with one another. This is extremely conducive to collaboration and team work,” explains Yakubov in a CIO article. “With a 3D visualization it is much easier to understand the connections between atoms, complex working of human organs or explain physical and chemical phenomena, so students better understand those subjects, stay focused for longer and engage with their learning.