Ridiculous start-ups from Finland and how photorealistic virtual worlds are soon here


I play very little games and I am not into the Angry Birds. With 50 million downloads and creation of world class brand is something to appreciate, though. Well done Rovio.

Last night the company’s Bird Whisperer Ville Heijari said that when international media asks how come Angry Birds comes from Finland they have a standard answer: “that is simply because in Finland we are the best in the world in marketing and in the art of creating brands“.


Another (ridiculous) game studio start-up in Finland, which I know much better, is the Virtual Air Guitar Company. I think the company is a good example of future high-tech company in Finland. The tech. guys of the team are top computer scientists who have developed “computer vision library that allows accurate real-time tracking of the entire human body as well as background removal using regular webcams”.

The other half of the team are New Media professionals, game designers, musicians, artists and designers who have been playing with similar kind of hacks for years to develop games you control with your body. It’s been a long way from the first working prototypes in 2004 to the game released last week on Playstation in Europe and US. Congratulations!


I think that still a couple of years ago the computer science guys would have license their technology to some corporation and be happy. That probably would have made the founders wealthy. In this case, the people also wanted to do content that is using the technology. I think that is wise and for sure more fun. Doing stuff is fun.

In think the Virtual Air Guitar Company is also leading the way to photorealistic virtual worlds. When we are able to track human body with video from several angles we may model 3D photorealistic “avatars” with a talking face and face expressions. With 360 cameras like the one used by Google street-view, possibility to do 3D photorealistic models of objects and possibility to combine the pictures and the models means that we can have photorealistic 3D worlds. With the new micro-size cameras you may also shoot and do 3D photorealistic models about very small and otherwise hard to reach places.

I think photorealistic virtual worlds are the future of video conferences. There are huge possibilities for learning, too. Just think about all the possibilities to build simulations and to do explorations. For instance with these tools medical doctors could study Intestines inside the system or engineers could study nuclear power inside a reactor.

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