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3D Video Conference

From snail mail to email and telephones to video conferences – the way we communicate has come a long way. As our technology continues to advance, so does our modes of communication. Thanks to some scientists in Berlin, 3D video conferencing may soon become a reality.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Telecommunications, Heinrich Hertz Institute, HHI have developed a new technology called “3D Human Body Reconstruction“. This elaborate camera and computer system can successfully produce a realistic 3D image of a person in a virtual world. Here’s how it works:

Stereo Cameras
A stereo camera has two lenses which see a person from slightly different angles, working much like our eyes do. The stereoscopic vision is used to estimate distances and create a 3D impression.

With the use of over 20 stereo cameras from different angles, each camera captures a part of the person and then the images are merged. Aside from the camera technology, algorithms were developed to extract depth information. With all this data, the computer creates a virtual model of the human which is then put into a virtual scene. The algorithms were designed to work quickly and efficiently so that the virtual image as realistic as possible, with natural movements and appearance.

As far as gestures and movement go, the illusion has been perfected. While the formation of the person can take a few seconds, the system can transmit the 3D dynamic model of a person rapidly. The person is able to move freely in the dedicated capture area of the virtual reality scene. The next step is to allow the 3D image to interact with the virtual scene (ex. pick up a virtual object).

Also on the horizon is the virtual video conferencing solution, as well as implementing the technology into infotainment applications. Businesses could have a more enriched video conferencing experience, while viewers could partake in a more interactive media experience.

Motion Tracking
This specialized camera system could also be beneficial in the film industry. The costly motion tracking method for television and movies involves marking actors with small dots, tracking the movement of these points, and transferring the data to a computer. Next, a computer-generated artificial image is produced and perfected. Post processing the computer-generated image can be time-consuming and costly. With the specialized cameras system, the goal is to more easily represent the person and their movement with more details for a more natural look.

Again, as it is still in its infancy, the researchers are still working on improving their camera system and software, but are looking to make this available as soon as possible. Share your thoughts on this technology and how it can change or impact different industries with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

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Article Name
3D Video Conference
New 3D technology has been developed and may soon be implemented to bring you a 3D video conferencing experience.

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