Christian VR apps That HAVE to be made

A while back, I got my hands on a free pair of Google cardboard VR glasses. While a bit clunky, they are still a fab way to transform your smartphone into a Virtual Reality headset.

A bit clunky, but quite a cheap way of bringing some sort of Virtual Reality experience into the home.

Trying it out, got me thinking. If there were a series of Christian VR apps, what would that look like?

Here’s the Christian Virtual Reality that Sofa would like to see…

The stable. Experience the birth of Jesus in full immersive VR. Hear Mary’s birthing pains, see the confusion on the cattles faces, and watch Joseph faint.
A Mega Church App. Don’t go to a Mega Church. Stay at home, and feel the atmosphere without smelling other peoples sweat.
The Church Volunteer. Get an insight into volunteering at church without any need for preemptive commitment.
The Longest Prayer. We know that Jonah was swallowed by a big fish. But what did he see in the big fish? What did he do? Hear Jonahs cry to the Lord, as you see the inside of the fish from Jonahs point of view.
Full on March. Now you can also march around the city of Jericho.
Full immersive adult baptism game. Hit the button as you go underwater… to ensure you come back up again.
Missed Lunch. Get an in depth view of Daniel and The Lions Den. From the lions prospective.
The Church Volunteer Coordinator. Feel the panic, and have first hand perspective of what happens when all the volunteers stay at home, and try to volunteer via VR glasses.
Crucifixion. The Viewers Experience. Put on your VR glasses and be transported to the original Good Friday! Enjoy!

Have you got any further ideas?

Churchix – Where Church meets Big Brother.

Church. Its a safe place to be right? A chance to escape the scrutiny of life, and focus on the one that makes us whole, right? A place and time where if you want to just come, and be, thats fine. Right?

Going to Church is after all, a nice and simple experience. A experience that is away from the privacy sapping experience that is day to day life. After all, the combined corporate might of Facebook, Sainsbury’s, and the location data from my phone could tell you too much about me. Its nice that the church isn’t part of that right?

Welcome to Churchix. Simply put its a facial recognition software for churches to who has attended what church service. The person that runs the software has a collection of photos of people for the software to look for, they connect up a camera, and can automatically track who has attended the service that is being “watched”.

This video shows it in action:

The site has had an interview with big brother the guys behind Churchix, and asked them about privacy, and the reaction of Churches to Churchix:

What about invasion to privacy?

Well that’s a good question. It’s important to understand that churches already manually track their members’ attendance. We just provide automatic and efficient way of tracking attendance using face recognition technology. We encourage churches to set up Churchix in a registration checkpoint where members are voluntary registering themselves by just looking at a camera. The church can offer members different incentives that will happily make them look at the camera.

What are the reactions to Churchix?

Reactions are simply overwhelming. Churches we spoke with are saying it’s like a dream come through. Imagine the effort required to manually track the attendance of 100 or 500 members. Try to manually track and register 1,000 members – It’s almost impossible. With Churchix it’s a piece of cake.

How does Churchix work?

Churchix is a desktop application which you can download and start using immediately. It allows the church to enroll its members’ photos into the software data base, and connect a live camera or upload pre-recorded video files or photos for face recognition matching.

Each face appearing in front of the camera is extracted and being matched against the pre-enrolled members. Churchix displays the matches in real-time and allows the church to manually override matches in case of a wrong identity.

The rest of the interview can be found here.

Sofa cant shake the feeling that this is all massively creepy, and is an example of technology being used to suit people in power, and not used to benefit people in general.

There also seems to be a similarity with a scene in Minority Report…


What do you think of facial being installed in Churches?

With thanks to @edaross for chucking this in my direction.

Weekly Round Up: The “Dear Christians” Edition


Welcome to the weekend, here’s this weeks round up:

Weekly Roundup: The #BigRead12 Edition

Welcome to the first weekly roundup of March:

Baptism by Webcam?

It seems that distance is no longer an issue when it comes to Baptism Services:

An unusual baptism has been held at a West Yorkshire church, with one of the godparents taking part despite being thousands of miles away.

Yvonne Atkin was able to join in the service for her seven-month-old nephew, Matthew, at St Mark’s church in Utley, while sitting at home in New Zealand.

Miss Atkin made her promises as godparent using a webcam and a laptop.

Vicar Derek Walmsley said: “Technology is often used for bad things, but this is a good way to use it.”

Janet Wordley, who lives in Silsden with her husband Chris, wanted her sister Yvonne to be godparent even though she lived on the other side of the world.

BBC News

Now… I’m in two minds. As I’m sure you’ve guessed… we both have geekish leanings, and I personally think that the idea behind this is fantastic. After all, whats not to like about the church helping a family come together during an event like this?

But can it really replace being there?