Stereo Labs' Linq headset uses mixed reality to spawn monsters in your living room

Depth-sensing technology allows the headset to populate real environments with virtual creations.


Stereo Labs has released a development kit for a headset called Linq that blends augmented reality (AR) and VR to populate real-life spaces with monsters and other videogame trappings (via UploadVR).

Along with a demonstration video, Stereo Labs published an explanation for how the headset works. It begins with a front-mounted sensor that uses a stereo camera to interpret the real world much the same way as human vision works.

"Linq’s built-in camera scans the environment in real-time and provides 6DoF inside-out world-scale positional tracking without the need for any external sensor. Users can walk, jump, crouch and even dodge projectiles, with every movement captured in the MR experience itself. They don’t need to map out the entire playing field first in order to play."

This AR/VR hybrid has been discussed before, by Oculus chief scientist Michael Abrash, who called it Augmented Virtual Reality: instead of creating a brand-new environment, Linq bottles up your real environment, transports it into the headset, and lets you manipulate it.

Because motion controls in VR are all the rage, Linq tracks the relative position of your limbs from both physical and virtual objects to determine what interactions should take place.

You can learn more on Linq's website.

Long Reads Editor

David L. Craddock writes fiction, nonfiction, and grocery lists. He is the author of the Stay Awhile and Listen series, and the Gairden Chronicles series of fantasy novels for young adults. Outside of writing, he enjoys playing Mario, Zelda, and Dark Souls games, and will be happy to discuss at length the myriad reasons why Dark Souls 2 is the best in the series. Follow him online at and @davidlcraddock.

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