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Ultra-Realistic Animations

Technology
Ultra-Realistic Animations
Saturday, November 3, 2007
5 Comments :: Article Rating :: Computer Graphics, Psychology, Media

You are watching a video with your mouth half open. You simply cannot believe what your see. How is it possible that the prime minister of Britain would say such a thing? It is so politically incorrect; that he might as well shot himself in the public.

Two days later, it is revealed that the footage is fake and it’s been produced by ‘Invincible Animators’ who created the video using 3D animations and morphing techniques to achieve the result. This immediately leads to lots of conspiracy theories on the net that suggest the Prime Minister actually said those words and this is just a cover up trying to convince the world that this never happened. Everyone is amazed and you start to wonder how can you trust a video source now? After all it can be faked again.

The above scenario is perhaps a dark side of this technology, though there are many lighter sides to this too. Ever since 3D animation industry was conceived, the holly grail was to make a photorealistic animation that looked like it had been filmed from a real scene in the world. The industry has come a long way since it’s inception as it can be seen in special effects produced by Hollywood. We are still a few years away from getting the holly grail, but we are advancing quickly.

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Life Logging

Technology
Life Logging
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
0 Comments :: Article Rating :: Artifical Intelligence, Gadgets, Society, Media, Human-Machine Interface

There was a lot of excitement. It was your wedding day. The guests were all dressed up and ready to go. You had a very tight schedule today and you wanted to enjoy every minute of it. You didn’t want to miss anything and wanted to keep it recorded for future. Almost everyone had a camera. They also didn’t want to miss anything. After all they were your immediate family and have been anticipating this day for a long time. They were just as happy as you were. When you arrived in the registry office, everyone was ultra-excited. Almost simultaneously everyone started to take pictures of you and your partner. They didn’t want to miss the great shot. The problem was that now everyone was engaged in photography rather than paying attention to the event itself. You and your partner didn’t know where to look as everyone was pointing a camera at you. When the pictures came out, they didn't look as elegant as you hoped for. People were posing for a picture, but not everyone was looking at the camera. Everyone wanted to log the event, but they had to sacrifice their participation. You wished that there would come a day that you didn’t have to worry about logging your life or events, that something would automatically log them for you while you enjoyed the especial moment.

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Virtual Robotics

Technology
Virtual Robotics
Sunday, October 28, 2007
0 Comments :: Article Rating :: Artifical Intelligence, Computer Graphics, Robotics

You bump into a pretty girl on your way to Mount Blue. She has a very nice body with exotic flowing dress which dances on her body as she moves. She has caught your attention. You decide to say hi. She responds and you start a casual chit chat with her. She seems very nice. Her name is Red Roosa. You are already thinking about changing your plans. She seems very friendly and very relaxed. You ask her if she is interested to go to a Night Club you have recently discovered. It’s new and is quite flashy. They have these new interactive dance routines which means you can influence the dance for the group as a whole. Mmmmm, going with her should be fun. You take her there, and well, you go for a dance. It’s incredible. She is really a nice person. The dance heats up and you are just wondering what to do next. Anything is possible …

Now, imagine if suddenly someone who was also in the dance club sent you an instant message saying “Not to ruin your night or anything, but did you know Red Roosa is a bot?”

You reply only to him, so that Red Roosa can’t see your chat, “Oh really! I didn’t know. Ok, well, thanks for letting me know.” You get back to her and carry on from where you were as if nothing has changed …

Avatars in a virtual world usually represent a person. However, an avatar can also be driven by an artificial intelligence. This is what the guy was referring to when he said she is a bot (robot).

A bot in a virtual world can look like any other and may prove to be more difficult to differentiate with real humans. Interaction between virtual robots and humans will become more complex and commonplace as virtual worlds become mainstream.

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Virtual Retinal Display

Technology
Virtual Retinal Display
Thursday, October 25, 2007
0 Comments :: Article Rating :: Computer Graphics, Gadgets, Mechanical Engineering, Electronics Engineering, Human-Machine Interface

You were still in wonder of the latest gadget you were wearing. It’s a lot lighter than your current head-mounted-display, but that’s not what has impressed you most. It’s the clarity! Everything looks so natural. You can see overlaid computer generated visuals even at the periphery of your eyes. It’s as if the overlaid features belong to the scene. The effect is even more noticeable as you move your head around. With your head-mounted-display you could only see objects when they entered the display in front of your eyes as you looked towards them and you always struggled with focus. Despite great advances since the early days, it seemed they still couldn’t get the hang of it. But now, this retinal display was such a joy to use.

Virtual retinal display works by drawing a laser raster display directly on your retina. You get to see a conventional display in front of your eyes with a large field of view. If carried out accurately, you won’t be able to tell the difference from what you see normally. Ultimately, there will be no edges, no flicker, no sense of looking at a computer display.

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Internet TV

Technology
Internet TV
Monday, October 22, 2007
0 Comments :: Article Rating :: Computer Graphics, Media, e-commerce

The dream has finally come true. There was so much hype around TV getting streamed over the internet for the past decade or two. But now, the new model is well established. Content is truly dynamic these days, from production to distribution, to rating, commenting and feeding. There is always someone who is producing something for any imaginable taste. The best way to find these videos is to see what likeminded people watched. Computers take care of it all now. For every type of content (like comedy, thriller, cooking, etc.) computers combine two kinds of data: what I like to watch and what others like me like to watch. It is quite efficient. The computer knows when I watch programs, what I watch, when I stop watching them and how I reacted to programs it chose for me. It also has access to similar content through channels, feeds and ratings provided by other citizens of this planet. Basically, everyone is programming the machines for everyone’s benefit. At last we are free. Gone are the days we had to watch low quality programs when they wanted us to see them.

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