About

This is Forest Key’s blog, about work related stuff.

Back to Mountain Biking

When i lived in california in the 90s i was a huge mountain bike enthusiast—Mt Tam in Marin County was at my backdoor, and I loved the arduous climb and accelerating descent it afforded just minutes from my home in Mill Valley. Somewhere along the way to Washington, Chile, and Beijing i lost track of […]

Voodle for iOS Launch

Very excited to kick off life for Voodle for iOS, which launches Monday June 29th 2020. As my son Carlos explains to gen z friends, “Discord and TikTok had a baby and named it Voodle”. To older gen X friends i explain Voodle as a “tiktok for the enterprise” user experience–a short-video a-sync for teams. […]

Voodle Concepts

We are off and running adding content to explain Voodle, and our beta testing is underway. So, excited. Here’s a blog post on our website i wrote about feature development for voodle.

From VR, onwards to Voodle and voodling

In January of 2020, after nearly 4 complete years working feverishly and with great passion and focus on the virtual reality market opportunity that seemed so bright and shinny and attainable in 2015… my colleagues and I at Pixvana made the painful, but necessary decision, to shut down our product and cease all of our […]

On the death of my son

As part of my grieving i wanted to write about my son’s passing. This post will be a work in progress that i will iterate on, as I am inspired to write. I read a book back in summer of 1992 called On the Death of My Son. It was an interesting book which tells […]

Onwards to voodle

Voodle is a vegetarian noodle, but it is also a great name for a software product? Video-doodles! Voodles are plural, voodle is a noun (“i made a voodle”), and voodle is a verb (“voodle it and it shall be done!). So, voodle, fun word right?

Pixvana SPIN Play for iOS

Well after 4 years at Pixvana chasing after the dream of VR and headset based immersive storytelling, today marked a huge milestone–we shipped our first iOS release of SPIN Play. It turns out that the billion+ users of mobile phones and iPads are a super compelling audience for immersive storytelling, and while it wasn’t our […]

Unfurling URLs

Ok so we are adding support to Pixvana SPIN Studio to share URLs more easily of what we call SPINs, playlists of content. Here’s our default SPIN that loads when you download our player app, SPIN Play, from various app stores (iOS App Store, Oculus, etc.): https://spinxr.com/JBH-8JF-7TC Note that now i will add that to […]

Shoreditch Street Art

I had a lovely art-walk experience this week in Shoreditch neighborhood of London led by David Stuart of http://www.shoreditchstreetarttours.co.uk and wanted to make note for others. I had of course seen Exit Through the Gift Shop, superb film on the street art scene and the artist Banksy in particular, so it was with wondrous glee […]

I had XR-vu, and I liked it!

“XR-vu“, or “VR-vu”…whichever term comes into vogue in the near-future, i want to go on record as saying that it happened to me a few weeks, ago, and I liked it–a lot! Yes i’m playing on the word “deja-vu“, that oh so fun feeling of experiencing something and having a sense of foreboding or otherworldly […]

Beijing and Pingyao Visit 2019

We just had a wonderful trip to Beijing and for the first time had a chance to do some side trips to Pingyao.  Was fun to take the bullet-train in china for the first time, it’s about 3.5 hrs to Pingyao from Beijing West Train Station.  The little town is beyond charming and surrounded by […]

My Japan Recommends

Just putting a quick note on some of my top recommends from Japan as i get a lot of requests and have been having to cobble together for friends.  Here’s a starter list: Pro-tips in general: Use this amazing site that has great english pages: https://pocket-concierge.jp to book restaurant reservations with many michelin-star and otherwise […]

Unboxing Kandao Obsidian R VR Camera

Just unboxing a Kandao Obsidian R VR Camera, this is going to become my personal VR blogging / testing camera, i really like the form factory and the quality of shots is excellent. First observations which are important to others considering buying: Box includes the camera, and a PPOE power injector.  And not much else. […]

Obituary: Luis Emilio Casanueva Tagle

Our papa Emilio Casanueva passed away Friday May 25th, 2018, at the Cottage Hospital in Santa Barbara CA.  He was surrounded with love and affection with family.  Emilio was born in Chile in 1939 and immigrated to the USA with his young family and eventually settled on the west coast in Marin County CA.  Early […]

We shipped Pixvana SPIN Studio!

These people (including some that aren’t pictured): Just shipped our first baby, Pixvana SPIN Studio: Pixvana SPIN Studio is an amazing new tool for storytelling with video for Augmented and Virtual Reality.  The suite has a lot of components still to come, but our MVP is something we are super proud and excited by–it provides […]

Zapallar in VR Project – Start

We just got back from a lovely spring break in Zapallar Chile visiting family.  We took a Omni VR Camera Rig with us and spent a day shooting the areas along the Zapallar-to-Cachagua coastal area and upon my return and review of the footage i’m really excited by how it looks.  I’ve got my 15 […]

Sofia the VR Explorer by Jesse Link

Seattle fine artist Jesse Link completed a commissioned piece for me to adorn the Pixvana office.  He completed the piece and dropped by our office last week, and my colleagues and I are totally psyched. My wife and I came across Jesse’s work in various Seattle cafes and first asked him to paint a piece for […]

SPIN VR – Pixvana’s storytelling platform

@Pixvana this week we announced our Virtual Reality Video platform, now known as SPIN VR.  The word SPIN has obvious connections to the new VR and AR medium, namely, the ability to “spin” or otherwise adjust your point-of-view to perceive the experience from different perspectives and angles. The photograph image of “spinning” fireworks was a direct […]

Masters of Visual Effects 1999 Style

Too fun.  So in 1999 some buddies and I put together a series of instructional video tapes (that we shipped out on VHS) called the Masters of Visual Effects series.  The series had originally intended to have some true masters of visual effects, eg: Scott Squires, John Knoll, Eric Chauvin… real veteran / gurus of […]

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Forest Key’s family blog can be found here

3 replies on “About”

Hi Forest – My mom just showed me your blog & I read the entry about Caetano Veloso and your experience w/ the king’s court. Made me feel instantly in sync with you! Would love to catch up one of these days, though I know how busy life gets. Besotes a todos, Nina

Hi Forrest, thanks for you amazing blog! We are from the Netherlands and planning on flying to Cile, buy a car and driving it to North Amrica 🙂
We read some tips on buying cars in Chile, but perhaps you can give us a few pointers? We are especially interested in cars one can sleep in. What are the chilenean rules on camping off-site?

thanks, Reinout

Hi Reinout,

There is a great book on the subject of driving a car from Chile to far north in Alaska at the top of North America, it is a bit dated as it was written 20+ years ago, but given your interest in that itinerary/trip, i still would highly recommended. The author is Tim Cahill who i love and is a great fun-to-read travel writer. The book is called Road Fever, here it is on amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Road-Fever-Tim-Cahill/dp/0394758374

Buying a car in Chile–cars cost a lot more in Chile because of import duties based on the size of the car’s engine, and cost of the car. So cars are about 40% more expensive in Chile than they are in the USA. Compared to Europe/Netherlands, they may be approximately the same. If you are buying the car with cash, you will need to find a way to get the $$ into Chilean Pesos into the country, which can be hard to do if you are taking about $20,000 or more Euros… i did it by moving $10k USD at a time via wire transfers, took a few weeks to get the funds settled. Once you have the car, getting insurance was a hassle. So, as an alternative to buying a car and driving it all the way to the USA… you might think of renting a car in each country and not dealing with the border crossings? I took my car to Argentina for a weekend, and it was a huge huge huge hassle… nothing like the convenience of driving between Netherlands and Germany 😉

As for sleeping in a car and or camping: I don’t think you’d have any trouble car camping on side of roads/etc. throughout Chile–it is sparsely populated and there is lots of land/space. There are also many national parks/monuments where car camping is common. I think from a security perspective, you would also be ok in the smaller towns, but not in the big cities where you would be safer/more comfortable getting cheap accommodations in a hotel.

All of that said, driving a car around Chile is wonderful. I was just down there again a month ago, and did a good 8 hr drive to the north and loved every minute of it. We stopped in small towns for walks and meals, and just super enjoyed as I hope you and your family will if you make the trip! let me know if I can answer in more detail on any subject.

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