Kai is the creator of NatureSims and its principal developer and designer. Kai’s expertise lies at the intersection of technology and education, with an MSEd from the University of Pennsylvania and over 15 years of experience of project management, development, and direct instruction in higher ed and educational nonprofits.
Kai left higher-ed in 2018 to focus on building educational VR products, and was awarded a fellowship through the Oculus LaunchPad program in 2019 to begin development of what became the first public NatureSims prototype, Frogworld.Kai lives in Bath, Maine, with his wife Jackie Brown, a Visual Arts professor at Bowdoin College.
Mike Vatcher a programmer by training. His work focuses on procedural generation in Unity3D, shader development, and code optimization for multi-core CPU and GPU compute shaders to maximize performance.
Mike also has experience developing systems such as AI’s, inventories, player controllers, grid and free based building systems, save systems, and more. Mike is responsible for the development of some of the environmental and AI systems for the MonarchVR demo, with the goal of creating a realistic digital world using procedural generation and advanced AI systems to control the behavior of non-player, “NPC” animals in a natural way.
Monarch Joint Venture
Monarch Joint Venture is a nonprofit organization whose mission is “to protect monarchs and their migration by collaborating with partners to deliver habitat conservation, education, and science across the United States.”
We have partnered with MJV to help connect us with specific research and researchers related to the monarch butterfly and monarch conservation, guide the educational aspects of our application, and to help us us connect with individual educators and educational institutions who may be interested in using our Monarch VR application.
Wendy Caldwell is the Executive Director of the Monarch Joint Venture, a national nonprofit dedicated to conserving monarch butterflies and the habitat that sustains them. Caldwell has worked professionally in monarch conservation research and education for 14 years, engaging partner organizations across the U.S. to restore habitat, advance scientific efforts, and increase awareness and action through education and outreach.
Katie-Lyn Bunney is the Education Coordinator for the Monarch Joint Venture. Bunney has worked as an environmental educator for 15 years and specifically with monarch education for eight of those years. In her current role, she supports MJV partners, the public and educators in designing and delivering the monarch butterfly facts and education.