Published Dec 04, 2018
Just Launched: Lucas Moskun
In Just Launched, we talk to brand new Full Sail grads, right out the door from graduation, about what’s next for them as they head out into the workforce. Our latest Just Launched graduate is Lucas Moskun.
Name: Lucas Moskun
Degree Program: Simulation & Visualization
Graduation Date: August 31, 2018.
First Job: I’m from New Hampshire. I started playing in bands in high school and delivering pizzas on the side. Eventually, I ended up in Chicago. When music didn’t pan out, I ended up spending a lot of time in kitchens learning about cooking. I ended up working for a chef, Omar Cantu, at Moto restaurant, which is a kind of restaurant that specializes in molecular gastronomy. The whole idea is the food you cook doesn't look like what it tastes like. That's when I began I understand the power of immersion.
Making the Pivot: I continued to cook, but I also got involved with theater projects and film projects on the side. Eventually, it became clear that the cutting edge of immersive experiences was going to be augmented and virtual reality. I figured if I really wanted to make the switch from being a chef to working in immersive experiences I would need some pretty solid computer science skills. I knew that the Simulation & Visualization program at Full Sail would give me that. I couldn't really find anywhere else in the country that had a program like it, where it spanned everything from VR to hardware. It's a unique pipeline. And as a slightly older student, the accelerated pace really fit my timeline.
Before Graduation: One of the most exciting projects I worked on during my time in the program was the space shuttle landing simulator. We have a flight simulator base that can be programmed and skinned for different experiences. Up until our project, the walls around the simulator have been covered in static projections. My instructor asked if anyone wanted to take on the challenge of making those projections interactive. I really like computer networking, and I thought it sounded fun. The first month of my Final Project course, I did all the networking in Unity.
Then we ran into a huge floating point error with Unity. We needed the simulation to go up to 32,000 feet because it's a space shuttle landing. We programmed the engine to simulate that altitude, but Unity just couldn't handle the geometry and everything in the simulation would start shaking. After some troubleshooting, we decided to switch to Unreal Engine, which none of us had used before, so it was a really bold choice. It ended up paying off. We got much better visuals.
Short-Term Goals: I was fortunate enough to land a job working for The Void as a C++ Engineer. They essentially work with third-party studios like Industrial Light & Magic to develop content for immersive VR experience rooms. It's a cutting-edge blend of cross-reality tech and location-based virtual reality. Think of it as a virtual theme park where elements of the room correspond to elements in a virtual environment for the ultimate VR experience. In the short term, I see myself continuing to learn the industry and develop my skills with an amazing company.
Down the Road: Currently, VR isn’t really adaptable for the mainstream. But in the next ten years all that is going to change. The technology will become extremely accessible. But how do we create that landscape? We have the tools to blur and sculpt reality, and I want to be one of the people that write the rules for that.
Advice to New Students: My advice would be to work really hard. Getting a job can be stressful, but I gave it my all the entire time I was here, and that definitely helped me find work. It’s a fast-paced program. It’s cutting-edge, and the instructors are extremely knowledgeable. There are incredible resources available to students, and it’s important not to waste any of it.