Google Glass’ semi-demise has become a topic of considerable interest lately. Alexander Sommer at WT-Vox takes the view that it was a courageous “public beta” and “a PR nightmare” but also well received in specialized situations where the application suits the device, as in Scott’s post below. IMO, a pretty good summary.
Blog Category: Mixed reality
An excellent article on FXPAL’s NudgeCam application recently appeared in MIT’s Technology Review. NudgeCam encapsulates standard video capture heuristics, such as how to frame a face and good brightness characteristics, in order to provide guidance to users as they are taking video, using image analysis techniques such as face recognition, as to how to adjust the camera to improve the video capture.
For its size, FXPAL has surprising breadth and variety of expertise. The NudgeCam work resulted from a collaboration between Scott Carter, whose expertise is in mobile and ubiquitous computing, and John Doherty, our multimedia specialist, who knows all the standard video capture heuristics and many more. John Adcock brought image analysis techniques to the team, and 2009 FXPAL summer intern Stacy Branham contributed her human-computer interaction expertise.
A different application, also developed at FXPAL, supports rephotography in an industrial setting. Rephotography is the art of taking a photograph from the same location and angle as a previous photograph. Continue Reading
Happy to note that our overview paper on the Virtual Factory work, “The Virtual Chocolate Factory: Building a mixed-reality system for industry” has been accepted at IEEE’s ICME 2010. The conference is in Singapore in July; I’ll be there, co-chairing a session there that focuses on workplace use of virtual realities, augmented reality, and telepresence. You can see more on the Virtual Factory work here.
Our friend Takashi Matsumoto, (who built the Post-Bit system with us here at FXPAL) built a cubic display called Z-agon with colleagues at the Keio Media Design Laboratory. Takashi points us at this video of a very nicely realized cubic display (well, five-sided, but still). It’s called pCubee: a Perspective-Corrected Handheld Cubic Display and it comes from the Human Communications Technology Lab at the University of British Columbia. Some of you may have seen a version of this demoed at ACM Multimedia 2009; it will also be at CHI 2010. Longer and more detailed video is here.
One highly inconvenient thing about working with virtual worlds or 3D content in general is: where do your 3D models come from (especially if you’re on a budget)? A talented but (inevitably) overworked 3D artist? An online catalog of variable quality and cost? Messing around yourself with tools like SketchUp or Blender? What if you want something very specific, very quickly? The MIR (Mixed and Immersive Realities) team here at FXPAL is very interested in these questions and has done some work in this area. Others are working on it too: here’s an elegant demo from Qi Pan at the University of Cambridge, showing the construction of a model with textures from a webcam image:
We’re looking forward to participating in ARdevcamp the first weekend in December. It’s being organized in part by Damon Hernandez of the Web3D Consortium, Gene Becker of Lightning Labs, and Mike Liebhold of the Institute for the Future (among others – it’s an unconference, so come help organize!) So far, there are ~60 people signed up; I’m not sure what capacity will be, but I’d sign up soon if you’re interested. You can add your name on the interest list here.
From the wiki:
The first Augmented Reality Development Camp (AR DevCamp) will be held in the SF Bay Area December 5, 2009.
After nearly 20 years in the research labs, Augmented Reality is taking shape as one of the next major waves of Internet innovation, overlaying and infusing the physical world with digital media, information and experiences. We believe AR must be fundamentally open, interoperable, extensible, and accessible to all, so that it can create the kinds of opportunities for expressiveness, communication, business and social good that we enjoy on the web and Internet today. As one step toward this goal of an Open AR web, we are organizing AR DevCamp 1.0, a full day of technical sessions and hacking opportunities in an open format, unconference style.
AR DevCamp: a gathering of the mobile AR, 3D graphics and geospatial web tribes; an unconference:
# Timing: December 5th, 2009
# Location: Hacker Dojo in Mountain View, CA
Looks like there will be some simultaneous ARdevcamp events elsewhere as well – New York and Manchester events are confirmed; Sydney, Seoul, Brisbane, and New Zealand events possible but unconfirmed.
December’s issue of Esquire features augmented reality not only on its cover but a couple of places inside. This is not the first instance of AR on print media, of course, but it’s nicely done. I’d love to see this sort of thing make its way into scientific publishing eventually, for 3d and animated illustrations and data visualization. Right now authors can put digital content related to their work out on the web, but it’s an altogether different subjective experience when it’s integrated into the printed object (book, journal, etc.).
Here’s a video tour of the AR in the Esquire issue:
“Print might be in trouble, but Esquire magazine won’t be going gently into that good night. The December issue of the magazine will feature augmented reality pages that will come alive when displayed in front of a webcam.
Augmented reality is a trend and phenomenon we’re starting to see more and more uses of across the web. In March, GE played with augmented reality while showing off its Smart Grid technology. Earlier this month, musician John Mayer released an augmented reality enhanced music video. The Disney.com iPhone app that was released earlier this week also utilizes some AR features.”