BC Stories

Exploring the natural history of British Columbia through stories of the land and people, experienced firsthand in Virtual Reality

Explore the stories!

See the stories in person!

For the best experience come in person to see the installation highlighting the stories. Someday soon there will hopefully be a booth at the Royal BC Museum highlighting the fascinating stories.

It will also be possible to view the stories at home or on the go, using either a web browser or, for full effect, a virtual reality headset.

Stayed tuned to this space, the stories are coming soon!

Some of our fantastic partners

The development team is resting on the shoulders of giants. The hard work has been collecting the stories and artifcats that make up our province's history. Some of those organizations and projects are listed here.

Royal BC Museum

University of Victoria

Centre for Digital Media

TU Berlin

QVirt Labs

UBC

A list of our team members!

University of Victoria, Makerspace, and QVirt

Dr. Derek Jacoby

I'm Derek. I was at Microsoft for about a decade working on the windows team and in Microsoft Research as lead program manager on the speech recognition team. I was the designer and developer of the “How do I” language model in Windows, which allows you, for instance, to say things like “How do I add a user?” and have it bring up the appropriate help page. I left Microsoft wanting to return to Canada and go back to grad school. I received my PhD from University of Victoria last year, and have been doing a lot of web development, some interesting signal processing, working with electronics and embedded systems, and developing VR applications. I am also founder and president of the Victoria Makerspace, a collective tool workshop from which some of our team members are drawn for this project. I am also doing a post-doc with Yvonne at UVic, run a boutique development company called QVirt labs, and am a mentor for a local web development bootcamp called lighthouse labs.

Dr. Yvonne Coady

I work with the MOD(ularity) Squad (the grooviest gang of students to ever attempt to improve the modularity of system infrastructure software), in the Computer Science Department, in the Faculty of Engineering, at the University of Victoria, Canada. Research Interests: mixed reality systems, citizen science, emerging avenues of advanced modularity across the software stack, and new programming paradigms and future pedagogical directions for immersive applications

Andy Wynden

I'm Andy. I am (or perhaps was) a student in the UVic Computer Science department. I'm currently working full time as a front-end developer, so I'll see if I make it back to school at some point. I'm interested in learning how to develop in Unity and for VR - my other passion is ceramics, so I'm hoping VR is a nice intersection between coding and using my spatial brain.

Aldyn Chelwos

I'm Aldyn. I'm a third(ish) year Computer Science Student at UVic. My background mainly involves front-end development. Both game development and VR are new areas for me and I'm looking forward to getting to delve into them both. I'm really excited to be a part of this project and the experience of creating new ways of interacting with the incredible resources at the Royal BC Museum.

Matt Richardson

I'm Matt. Many years ago I discovered I had a great need for artistic expression and creation but absolutely no drawing or musical ability. The next best thing seemed to learn to create in every other medium I could. I work in everything from metal and wood to electronics and code. Last year Derek Jacoby introduced me to the wonderful world of VR and I was hooked. I had previous experience using Unity 4 and Blender from work I had done on some KSP mods and quickly applied that to creating VR worlds and tools. I also have a good chunk of experience in industrial CAD and system design.

This project tickled my “Must Do” genes because I am also something of a Museum Rat. I'm the kind of guy that has memberships to the things and actually goes on a regular basis. Naturally, I am terribly excited to be part of such a fantastically talented team! GO BCS!

Currently I'm working on building a few 3d scanners to assist the story teams by creating meshes from existing artifacts in The BC Archives.

David Leach

I'm David. I'm the Chair of the Department of Writing & the co-founder of UVic's Digital Storytelling & Social Simulation Lab. I'm especially interested in the narrative potential of interactive media, including CYOA books, text adventures, video games, augmented and virtual reality, geolocative storytelling, and web-based interactive (non)fiction and poetry. I studied BASIC, FORTRAN and PASCAL a long time ago but couldn't code my way out of a wet paper bag today. I like to connect students with off-campus community and entrepreneurial projects.

Technical University of Berlin

Sophi Miethe

Hey everyone! My name is Sophie Miethe. I’m a bachelor student of “Media Computer Science” at TU Berlin. In my time at university I could already acquire some programming skills but I haven’t worked in a real job with it yet. Alongside my studies I’m working as a dancer/dance teacher.

Some years ago for a lot of people to experience Virtual Reality with glasses was still a thing of the future and now you can buy it everywhere. I have no experiences with VR technologies but I’m really excited to learn and work with it. I’ve always been interested in gaming, developing and storytelling for itself. So this is a great opportunity for me to work and learn in this area. The composition of various components like museum, VR and audience interaction is a great idea! I’m curious how we will implement this and give the players the best possible game and learning experience. I’m looking forward to work with everyone at this international collaborative project!!

Neha Mishra

My name is Neha Mishra. I am an Indian student, currently pursuing master in Computer Engineering at TU Berlin.

I am deeply interested in the fields of Computer Vision and 3D Imaging. I am familiar with C, C++, MatLab and have basic knowledge of VHDL, Cadence, Oracle and MeshLab. Currently I am serving as a Student research assistant(HiWi) at Computer Vision & Remote Sensing department of TU Berlin. Here, in a small team, using Qtcreator, Github and C++; I am developing a GUI-Tool to evaluate the camera calibrations calculated by Structure-from-Motion (SfM) algorithms. Simultaneously, I am working with Blender, Meshlab & Cmake to have better composition of UV charts for the given compositions of building facades. In the recent past I served as a HiWi on project Robust Camera Self Calibration. In that project I was responsible for acquiring point clouds and marker's position for three dimensional reconstruction of various objects. Also I worked with Meshlab for the creation of three dimensional mesh of the reconstructed point clouds. In my B.Tech. as well I worked on various MatLab based projects, viz. Iris Recognition using Gabor filter and SVM(Support Vector Machines) with UBIRIS database, Real time face recognition using SIFT algorithm and Simulation of OCDMA (Optical Code Division Multiple Access) codes, etc.

I am really very excited to work on this project with such a diverse and knowledgeable experts and team-mates.

Damian Dominik Martinez Dryer

I am Damian Dominik Martinez Dreyer, student of Media Computer Science (Medieninformatik) at TU Berlin. Since enabling musical performances and including supporting light in our high schools gym, I have been passionate about the augmentation of human senses and imagination technology is able to offer. Both, the visual and the audible, have been key to my interests and to my choice of major. I have always wanted to bridge technology with real human interaction, leading me to taking part in courses like 'Computer Graphics I and II', 'Introduction to Computer Vision', 'Speech Communication and Speech Signal Processing', 'Usability Engineering', but also seminars on public relations and communication. In an earlier project with students of Medieninformatik, we created an Audio Experince / Soundwalk conveying the life of a student at TU Berlin. I was able to gain experience in imagining, planning, recording and manipulating audio, including binaural effects. Recently, in an Internship at VRnow GmbH in Berlin, a startup that provides virtual real estate visits from building plans, I came into contact with concepts of VR experiences and hands on work in Blender and Python for automatic geometry generation and city modelling. I am experienced in C, C++, Python, Java, Haskell, Javascript and willing to learn.

I would love to apply and combine my knowledge and gain new insights into VR and the multi-modal interaction involved throughout our project.

Samuel Shaw

My name is Samuel Shaw and I'm originally from Sydney, Australia. I have been living in Berlin for almost 4 years now and am currently completing a Bachelor in Media Computer Science at TU Berlin and working part-time as a Software Test Engineer. I have experience in C, C#, Java, Javascript and have started recently teaching myself Unity but I am always keen to learn new languages and technologies. I began playing computer games at around the same time I started walking so I am very excited to be able to contribute to this project and to immerse myself in the world of VR. I am looking forward to working with you all!

Daniel Steinmetz

I'm Daniel and a student of “Media Computer Science” at TU Berlin and currently in my 6th term. During my study I had the opportunity to gain insights in a couple of different fields, including Computer Graphics, Image Processing, Software Engineering and Functional Programming. Beside my study I worked as a iOS Developer for a German messenger client for soccer fans called “IMFootball”. While I also have a solid background with other programming languages, I look forward for this new project beyond the Apple universe and hope to learn a lot of new stuff regarding multi modal interaction in a such a practical project that is open for new ideas.

Satria Bayuaji

My name is Satria and I came here to Berlin from Jakarta, Indonesia 4 years ago to pursuit my Bachelor degree. I'm currently in the last year of the bachelor “Media Computer Science” program at TU Berlin. In the past 4 years I've learned different things such as Speech Technologies, Databases, Software Engineering, Functional Programming and Web Technologies. For the last 1,5 years I've been working in an android team for a news company. The first year was spent on establishing an environment for the automated tests of the android app and writing the tests. 6 Months ago I started going deeper into the development. I'm really excited to learn even more stuffs from this project and contribute for it!

Max Kolyanov

My name is Max. First year CS master student at TU Berlin. I'm coming from a background in web development, but over the years I've worked with all kinds of things, including Unity and 360 cameras. Really passionate about all things virtual reality. My huge interest right now is WebVR and all the possibilities having interactive experiences on internet opens for educational and storytelling applications. This is first VR project of such scale for me, so extremely excited to be part of the team and help bring an amazing museum experience to life!

University of British Columbia

Dr. Rachel Ralph

I'm Rachel. I was a generalist middle school teacher for 7 years in the Fraser Valley. Shortly after completing my Master of Educational Technology, I watched my school district make some “interesting” decisions regarding technology and I decided to leave my school district and pursue my PhD. I received my PhD from the University of British Columbia this year in Curriculum and Pedagogy with a focus on Media and Technology Studies Education. Currently, I am an instructor at UBC and at the CDM focusing on teaching, instructing, and media and technology studies. I am also doing a post-doc with Yvonne and am excited to join this VR/AR/MR project with everyone. I am very passionate about media and technology educational curriculum studies.

I think this project is going to be amazing and I'm excited to share my expertise as a teacher, curriculum specialist, and educational researcher. I would like to see my role as taking this project further to measure “learning” and to demonstrate that VR/AR/MR can play a central role in education (formally and informally). I think we are just scratching the surface on what can be a very influential project.

Lianghui (Helen) Zhang

My name is Helen. I'm a second year computer engineering student at UBC. I have some experience in programming and working with Unity.

This is an amazing learning opportunity for me to get to know more about VR, voice recognition, story telling and systematic design in general. Game designing is one of my major interest, and I think VR can really bring entertainment to life. It always fascinates me how VR makes stories so engaging and unforgettable. I'm so excited to see some BC history stories to be re-enacted by these technologies.

I'm really grateful to be a part of the team and I'm looking forward to learn more about everything!

Centre for Digital Media

Steven Ceasar Wong

I graduated from Simon Fraser University major in Interactive Art & Technology. My concentration is Media Art. I was working on two VR projects in the CDM before. One Oculus VR project is a VR card game with Crazy Eight mechanics. One HTC Vive VR project is a planet creator by throwing different combinations of asteroids to created different planets. In these two VR projects, I was responsible for doing visual particle effects and Unity VR development such as controller mapping and events. I am really interested that I can have another VR project in this term. I am also doing a VR course project in SFU surrey campus this summer term. I love VFX so much. My roles in this project maybe are Unity related stuffs and visual effects.

Deepak Balachandar

I am a graduate student from university of wales who specializes in the field of game design and visual design. I have been working in the game’s industry for the past 4 years and have had the fortune of working in a variety of platforms such as VR, mobile, pc and EMOTIV Epoc device which user Electroencephalography (EEG) is an electrophysiological monitoring method to record electrical activity of the brain. I have also been working on different genres such as acting, puzzle, strategy and casino in the field of interactive design. Some of the different types production tools that i use are Maya, unity, photoshop and illustrator. Looking forward to working with you all. Cheers.

Krisha Maclang

I graduated with a degree in Communications. My work background has involved digital marketing communications in many aspects – whether it’s social media management, web analytics, public relations, event management, etc. Aside from this, I’m also a writer. In the CDM, I’ve helped develop games, apps, and recently, a game involving AR and geolocation. I’m doing project management and UX for BC Stories and I’m excited for my first time working in VR.

ChingAn Lin

I am ChingAn, an artist on team. I am from digital media and history background, mostly doing 2D, 3D UI stuff. I have worked on 2 VR projects, one is historical narrative exploring game, another one is planet creator, create different planets by throwing different asteroids. I am a big fan of games, want to try every game and make cool games. I am super excited to work with you wonderful guys and make awesome stuff.

Emily Burt

I am an Artist/Project Manager on the team. My bachelors is in Sociology and Political Science and I am currently completing my masters in Digital Media. I develop digital solutions to help solve problems. I make games, prototyped museum exhibitions, worked on developing AR applications and love working on teams! I haven’t developed anything in VR before and could not be more excited to start. In my spare time I love to paint and write songs on my ukulele. I am very interested to put my storytelling and exhibition skills to good use.

JJ (Jong Jik) Kim

I am originally from South Korea. I studied Visual Effects and worked in Computer Graphic industry in the US. I do have a strong texturing and lighting skills as well as multiple software such as Maya, Adobes, Unity, Zbrush, Mari, and so on.

Nathan Nguyen

I am a 4th year SFU Computing Science student working with the CDM team on this project. Being a CS student, I will tend to the more technical side of things in both Unity development and managing the overall project structure, as well as communicating with other technical teams that we have joining us in this project. I am thrilled to learn more about mixed reality and about building interactive creative content and so I am looking forward to be working on this project with you all!