Meta, who owns Facebook, said that applications are now open for the AR/VR Africa Metathon, which will be held with Imisi 3D and BlackRhino VR.
The AR/VR Africa Metathon is a set of programs and events put on by the Meta global XR fund to help African people with XR skills build new solutions that show how the Metaverse can be used in different ways in Africa.
The AR/VR Metathon will contain three primary components: a training program, an Africa-wide hackathon that will take place physically across 16 nations in Africa and be open to everyone electronically, and an intensive boot camp to develop solutions further.
The duration of these parts will be from the middle of August through April of 2023.
Phil Oduor, Policy Programs Lead for Africa at Meta, says, “The AR/VR Africa Metatron is a chance to show how AI, augmented reality, and virtual reality technologies, which have been around for decades, are key to the future of the metaverse and what Africans are building in the industry.”
Oduor says that the XR Programs and Research Fund is a $50 million investment in building the Metaverse in Africa through programs and outside research over two years. Through the use of this fund, Meta is working in conjunction with various industrial partners, civil rights organizations, government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and academic institutions to establish how to construct these technologies responsibly.
This is why we’ve teamed up with Imisi 3D and BlackRhino VR, a developer of an extended reality ecosystem and a virtual reality production company. They show the creative and innovative side of Africa. To start this program to help African XR experts who are making new solutions that show how the Metaverse works in Africa,” Oduor says.
Six years after our very first hackathon, and after successive events in over 28 countries throughout the continent, we are pleased to announce our sixth annual hackathon. According to Judith Okonkwo, founder of Imisi 3D & AR/VR Africa, “we are very excited to be teaming with Meta and BlackRhino VR for the 2022 edition.”
When the Metaverse is getting a lot of attention worldwide, our goal is still the same: to increase access to XR resources on the continent, speed up XR talent, show off African XR solutions, and create career and industry pathways.
The Marathon will encourage young African creative technologists to explore and find new things. They will have the chance to come up with Afrocentric XR use cases to help them deal with some of the unique problems they face on our continent. Africa needs this kind of collaboration to show how XR technologies can open up new and untapped social and economic opportunities, said Brian Afande, co-founder and MD of BlackRhino VR.
Through this link, programmer developers, artists, UI/UX designers, animators, professionals, storytellers, and students who want to sign up for the 12-week training can do so.