UploadVR 3.0: Ready for the Mainstream

by Will Mason • October 2nd, 2015

Dear Reader,

So today you may notice that the site has a bit of a different look to it. Over the past couple months we have been working hard to overhaul our look and make the site vastly more usable in the process. Let’s take a minute to look back at the last eleven months and how the site has evolved.

The original "Upload Journal" Circa December, 2014

The original “Upload Journal” Circa December, 2014

When we first began the site, it was little more than a blog on our events site. We had a couple of basic posts which detailed some of our thoughts about the future, but we weren’t covering news – not yet. That all began to change one fateful day when Matt Stone and Trey Parker debuted a new episode of South Park featuring the Oculus Rift. While watching the episode I realized that this was a big moment for the industry. The next morning I checked some social media analytics and confirmed that fact in an article which proved to be the first of many I would write over the next number of months.

 

The article that started it all.

The article that started it all.

The next day, I followed up on the story with a fun anecdote that Oculus’ customer support had been responding to all service requests as “Steve” in reference to the episode. From there I started writing more and more, and along the way I picked up our frequent guest author, Matthew Terndrup, who began writing for us in December.

Fast forward to CES.

When I first tried the Crescent Bay it changed everything about the way I viewed VR. I’ll admit I was initially disappointed by my DK2 when it first arrived in October of last year, but seeing a glimpse for the first time of the direction the technology was going solidified my desire to cover its rise.

The hands on article I wrote that day (which, funny story, I published using 3D Head‘s wifi connection) broke the site multiple times over. We were the first outlet to write a hands on with the device at CES so the traffic was completely overwhelming for our shitty modest wordpress site. We knew then we needed to redesign and shore things up, and that is where the UploadVR.com you have come to know and love this year was born.

The second version of the site.

The second version of the site.

Built in a whirlwind of a week during the Sundance Film Festival back in January we set to build something that would be able to withstand our rapid growth. The site we launched was something we were proud of, but it wasn’t without its flaws. There were multiple redundancies and little UI things that bugged us, but it was our baby and we wanted to watch it grow.

And then there was that time we introduced Jane Fonda to VR.

Since then we have experienced an explosive upwards trend, 625% growth to be exact, matching in line with the trends as virtual reality made its way into the mainstream consciousness. We have grown as a team too. We brought on our first staff writer, Ian Hamilton, two months ago and he has rapidly proved himself to be one of the best in the VR coverage space. In addition to him and Matt we have also seen a number of awesome guest authors grace the site, a trend we are definitely looking to continue.

We also brought on a member of our team that many of you likely have not yet met, Roarke Clinton. Roarke has been heading up the design of the new site that you see today, and obviously has done an incredible job with it.

UploadVR 3.0 is a step towards bringing you the same great coverage, but in an even bigger and better package. Over the next months we will be going through a lot of evolutions, and we still have something up our sleeves to show you all when it is ready.

But until then please, browse the new site. Click around. In line with Facebook’s philosophy, try and break things – then, if you don’t mind, let us know what broke. You can send any bug reports to [email protected].

Lastly, I mentioned that we are looking to add even more voices from the VR community to our site. If you are interested in writing for UploadVR reach out to us at [email protected].

I look forward to continuing to cover this medium as it ascends into the mainstream. I hope you guys and girls are all excited to take this journey with me.

Sincerely,

Will Mason

Editor in Chief

 

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