Lifeliqe CEO on interactive content, augmented reality, virtual reality and superhero responsibility
Social Media Portal (SMP): What is your name and what do you do there) for Lifeliqe?Ondrej Homola (OH):
My name is Ondrej Homola, Iím the co-founder and CEO of Lifeliqe
. I guess that says it all. SMP: Briefly, tell us about LifeliqeOH:
Lifeliqe is a platform company developing top-notch visual learning and productivity tool for advanced interactive content, AR and VR. We are enabling teachers to connect with their students by giving them up-to-date technology, sparking the precious light-bulb moments that lead to lifelong passion for learning.SMP: When was the company founded, how many people work there and how is it funded?
The company was founded in 2015 and you can guess how fast a start-up can grow. We are evolving all the time so the number isnít stable, but you can imagine itís really not a corporation number. As far as the funding is concerned, itís a mixture of angel investment, our own resources and income from revenue. SMP: How did you create the company name Lifeliqe and what does it mean?OH:
I believe that the educational content thatís being used in schools isnít really cutting it. How can a student connect to a teacher when the tools the teacher is using are actually older than the student? Kids are used to high quality graphics from gaming and movies.
And thatís what we are bringing Ė our development team has more than 40 years of experience in gaming combined, and knows how to create content thatís closer to reality than ever Ė itís almost life-like. And thatís obviously where we got the name.
SMP: Who are your target audience and why?OH:
The pivotal pair of whole education is a student and a teacher. A strong connection between them has a great impact on the whole educational process Ė student feeling a connection is paying more attention and is more engaged. Lifeliqe wants to be that connection facilitator.SMP: You recently partnered with HTC Vive, how did that partnership happen and what have you created?OH:
As I mentioned earlier, we are always trying to keep the education content up-to-date, so even before all the VR madness started, we were experimenting with different devices. As the HTC Vive is the most advanced device on the market, we decided to give it a try. HTC Vive noticed our effort and the result is a strategic partnership for education. SMP: What does 3D printable, AR and/or VR technologies bring to education?
OH: What all technologies bring to the education is a potential that has to be fulfilled by content. Technology itself doesnít solve anything, content is what gives the sense to it. Once the tech is equipped with corresponding up-to-date content, it can serve as a great way to engage the kids. But most importantly for a teacher it means he can speak the language of the student and thus connecting more easily.
SMP: How is the content being received Ė what is the reaction to it?OH:
The feedback is crucial when developing content. We never get enough of it, even if it wasnít positive Ė it always pushes us further. Lifeliqe content is used in more than 10,000 schools all over the world and in overwhelming majority the feedback is positive.
Our VR content is a different chapter Ė we demoed it at a couple of conferences like AWE 2016 or ISTE 2016, we also got invited to an event hosted for US senators in the White House. People were really excited and usually told us that itís actually the first educational VR content thatís useful and that they are happy itís not shooting zombies again ☺
SMP: What are the challenges that youíve encountered and how are you overcoming them in what you have been doing so far at Lifeliqe?OH:
Well, there have been challenges and there always will be, thatís what happens when youíre doing something no one has ever done before. Developing in VR is challenging because thereís no roadmap, the limits of the technology are still being discovered. But thatís whatís exciting about it at the same time.
The biggest challenge lies in the education though: closing the gap between the teacher and student and sparking his lifelong passion for learning.SMP: What are the high moments of what you have been doing so far?OH:
There have been lots of them in the past; itís hard to take out just a few of them. For us, a high moment is in every light-bulb moment Lifeliqe helps to achieve, every teacher loving his job again and every student finding his passion for learning. SMP: What do you see as your biggest challenges and opportunities for your sector and the competition that you have?OH:
We donít really feel competition as such. Our biggest challenge is to deliver our state-of-the-art solution that will be easily adopted by every teacher.SMP: What do you think is going to be the most interesting aspect regarding 3D printable media, AR and/or VR technologies for the next 12 to 18-months and why?OH:
I think the most interesting will be to watch how the VR technology will spread. I also expect the AR get even more attention now with Hololens. And I guess itíll be very interesting to see what will come out of Lifeliqe, because we have a couple of aces up our sleeves ;)
SMP: What are your top five predictions for 3D printable media, AR and/or VR technologies for the next 12 to 18-months and why?OH replies with:
SMP: What are your top overall 3D printable media, AR and/or VR technology tips and why?
- AR and VR will be used in education on daily basis.
- AR will definitely gain pace and the hype will switch from VR to AR.
- VR gains widespread adoption not just in gaming, but education and healthcare.
- Haptic controllers will be introduced into VR.
- VR experiences will become complex and shareable with others.
OH replies with:
- Lifeliqe Ė as it incorporates all above.
- HTC Vive Ė most advanced VR device on the market.
- Microsoft Hololens Ė AR device to look out for.
SMP: Is there anything else we should know, or is there anything that youíd like to share?OH:
Yeah, I believe that no matter what education content people create, they should always keep in mind the connection between the teacher and the student. When the connection is there, the student pays attention and gets inspired easier.
That leads to more light-bulb moments which spark the curiosity and lifelong passion for learning, which is what education should be about. And thatís what we want to achieve with Lifeliqe.
SMP: Best way to contact you and Lifeliqe?OH:
You can always contact us via our website lifeliqe.com or via our social media Facebook
or Twitter @Lifeliqe
. We are also on Instagram.
Now some questions for funSMP: What did you have for breakfast / lunch?OH:
Coffee and orange juice.SMP: Whatís the last good thing that you did for someone?
I keep asking myself the same question all the time.SMP: If you werenít working at Lifeliqe what would you be doing?OH:
The thing is, Iím not working at Lifeliqe. Iím living my dream and Iím lucky enough that my passionís name is Lifeliqe. SMP: When / where did you go on your last holiday and why?OH:
A month ago at my parentís house.SMP: Whatís the first thing you do when you get into the office of a morning?OH:
I make some coffee and turn on my computer. SMP: If you had a superpower what would it be and why?OH:
Well, as we know from the Spiderman story, with great power comes great responsibility and I guess I have enough responsibility already ;)
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