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  • Wed 28 Nov 2007

    1977 StarWars’ 3D

    Published at 9:59   Category 3d  

    Back in 1977 there were no Maya, no shaders, no spacemouse…

    Here’s another video from the EVL, the lab that created the Cave :

    (1977) The computer graphics for the first Star Wars film was created by Larry Cuba in the 1970s at the Electronic Visualization Laboratory (EVL) (at the time known as the Circle Graphics Habitat) at the University of Illinois at Chicago

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    Thu 22 Nov 2007

    The pocket cathedral – birth of the CAVE

    Published at 0:27   Category Art, VR Displays, Virtual Reality  

    Alex Bouchet showed me those two vintage videos of the early days of the CAVE :

    “(1991) before the CAVE was called “The CAVE” it was internally named the Pocket Cathedral (actually it was called the Closet Cathedral – or the Closet for short).
    The CAVE was invented by the Electronic Visualization Laboratory (EVL) at the University of Illinois at Chicago.”

    It seems CAVE stood for Cave Audio Visual Environment, then Cave Automatic Virtual Environment.

    Dan Sandin says that CAVE refers to “both the early cave paintings and to the shadows of the ideal forms in Plato’s cave”.
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    (Update: Here’s another good introductory video to the CAVE system : 1993)
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    Tue 13 Nov 2007

    Multitouch with the Wiimote

    Published at 0:43   Category VR Devices, Virtual Reality DIY  

    A really clever use of the Wiimote, by Johnny Lee, from Carnegie Mellon University.
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    You might need WiiYourself! to read the position of 4 different dots. It’s the best Wiimote interface I found so far.

    Mon 12 Nov 2007

    Cave Unreal Tournament Video

    Published at 16:49   Category Game, VR Applications  

    Alex Bouchet sent me this video of him playing Jeffrey Jacobson’s Cave Unreal Tournament :

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    Alex says it’s a bit buggy (synchronisation problems), and the navigation is not very natural yet, but the immersion awesome.

    Can I come play with your Cave? :p

    Sun 11 Nov 2007

    Levelhead – Augmented Reality Game

    Published at 19:29   Category Augmented Reality, Game  

    Here’s a really nice use of AR, by Julian Oliver (you should look at the higher res video on the site).
    (from O-Town)

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    Wed 7 Nov 2007

    DLP 3D – Stereoscopic HDTV & HD-Projectors

    Published at 15:39   Category VR Displays, Virtual Reality DIY  

    The DLP 3D technology is reaching mass market!

    This ZDNet article says that those TVs “which uses DLP-based rear projection and ranging in price from $1499 to $4500″.

    Moreover, Mitsubishi is planning 3D Blu-Ray player for early 2008.
    From the DLP official site :

    DLP® 3-D HDTV System Requirements:
    • A DLP® 3-D Ready HDTV offered by either Mitsubishi or Samsung
    • VESA compatible LCD shutter glasses and sync signal transmitter
    • Video or graphics source which shows 3-D pictures using DLP® HDTV 3-D format.

    Advantages of DLP® 3-D HDTV technology

    - The DLP® 3-D HDTV technology supplies a 60Hz frame rate signal to each eye (equivalent to 120 Hz).

    - The technology has a virtually zero implementation cost on new DLP® HDTV, benefiting consumers with a future proof capability.

    DLP® HDTV 3-D Image Format

    3-D stereoscopic video content is sent to the TV digitally, through an HDMI or DVI port. Left and right stereo images are independently filtered, then sampled in an offset grid pattern. The resulting views are then combined, and appear as a left and right checkerboard pattern in a conventional orthogonal sampled image. This format preserves the horizontal and vertical resolution of the left and right views providing the viewer with the highest quality image possible with the available bandwidth.

    This whitepaper has more information about the image format.

    Wed 7 Nov 2007

    VR in USB norm

    Published at 9:45   Category VR Devices  

    Did you know that VR devices are represented in the USB HID norm ? More precisely in the Usage tables, page 43. This document describes all the usages that a USB device can represent, a sort of abstract devices list, like mouse, joystick…
    The types for VR are : Belt, Body Suit, Flexor, Glove, Head Tracker, Head Mounted Display, Hand Tracker, Oculometer, Vest, Animatronic Device.

    This documents dates back to 2001 and is obviously outdated.. I’m wondering if any software or hardware is implementing those ?

    Sun 4 Nov 2007

    Assassin’s Creed art

    Published at 10:09   Category 3d, Art, Game development  

    Here’s a nice article about the art of Assassin’s Creed.

    Fri 2 Nov 2007

    AFRV – 2nd days

    Published at 17:42   Category Virtual Reality  

    The french association for virtual reality (AFRV [fr], english page here) was holding its annual meeting in Marseille. Nearly all the major actors of VR in France were there.

    The complete photo gallery is here.

    - The 3x3x4m Cave of the CRVM -

    Bruno Arnaldi has been elected as the new AFRV president, replacing Philippe Fuchs.

    Here are some interesting things that were said during those days, in a simplified and out-of-context form (don’t hesitate to correct me!) :

    - VR is very interesting to study humans: it allows for a good experimental control and ecological validity: you can manipulate a reality and conduct experiments that for practical or ethical reasons couldn’t be conducted in the real world.

    - In a lot of fields, studies must be done to see if the actions, behavior and perception in virtual environments and reality match. This ecological validity is crucial for the validity of studies conducted in VR only.

    - A lot of work has to be done to improve the communication skills of an avatar: non-verbal cues must be transmitted for better communication, and the way we interact with them must be simplified, more natural.
    - A lot of people don’t want to use intrusive devices (HMDs, glasses etc)

    - 3D interactions are still a big research area.

    - Users are not necessarily ready to use haptics (force-feedback), even a 6DOF device is sometimes difficult!

    - Rehabilitation through VR is better: closer to reality, better transfer from virtual to real, better motivation thanks to the fun aspect of VR.

    - Stereo viewing is not the natural way of seeing. Sometimes we are faster at evaluating depth through parallax. Studies are being conducted to study the perception of shapes with stereoscopy compared to the real world.

    Thu 1 Nov 2007

    3d3 competition photos

    Published at 17:41   Category Game development  

    The 3d3 competition is “rewarding the best students’ projects using Virtools, in the field of real time 3d creation”. Here are some photos I took during the event. Some of the games presented looked really great, and as usual students impress me by their incredible work!

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