Steven M. LaValle

Steven M. LaValle
  • Chief Scientist of VR/AR/MR, Huawei Technologies


Steve LaValle is Vice President and Chief Scientist of VR/AR/MR at Huawei Technologies.  He is also Professor of Computer Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  He has a PhD in Electrical Engineering, and has taught at Stanford University and Iowa State University, prior to joining the University of Illinois in 2001.  He has published over 150 scientific articles, and 3 books, Planning Algorithms (2006), Sensing and Filtering (2012), and Virtual Reality (2017).  His books are available online for free.

His Research interests are robotics, virtual reality, sensing, planning, and human-computer  interaction. He is most known in robotics for his introduction of Rapidly exploring Random Trees (RRTs), one of the most widely use algorithms in the field.  Regarding virtual reality, he was an early founder of Oculus VR and the chief scientist; there he developed patented tracking technology and led a team of perceptual psychologists to provide principled approaches to VR system calibration, health and safety, and the design of comfortable user experiences.  He is also an active angel investor and adviser to startup companies and venture capitalists.

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Topic of Speech:”Virtual, Augmented, and Mixed Reality: Where is it All Going?”

This talk will discuss the current industrial trends in consumer virtual, augmented, and mixed reality.  The central Theme is that three E’s must be carefully addressed for product success in these areas:  Ergonomics, Ecosystem, and Engineering.  One of the most fundamental challenges arises from the human side, resulting in “Perception Engineering”, which is the design of new human experiences in a way that are compelling and comfortable over extended periods of time.  This involves a tight integration of software, hardware, human perception, and human physiology (including neuroscience).