BUILDING TELEPRESENCE SYSTEMS: Translating Science Fiction Ideas into Reality

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1 BUILDING TELEPRESENCE SYSTEMS: Translating Science Fiction Ideas into Reality Henry Fuchs University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (USA) and NSF Science and Technology Center for Computer Graphics and Scientific Visualization Major support is gratefully acknowledged from the U.S. National Science Foundation and from the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency

2 Introduction The dominant grand challenge of graphics in the past 30 years has been realism, esp. photorealism Briefly, in the past decade, being in a virtual world, captured the public imagination Next, to be immersed (at least partly), in a far-away place/ with far-away people Driving examples: telemedicine, telecollaboration (MCAD) and laparoscopic surgery

3 Initial Concepts:Visual Telepresence (1993) Local MD & Patient Remote Consultant

4 Medical Consultants Together with Local MD & Patient

5 Problem: Too Difficult (for now) Real-time 3D scene capture at each of the sites Presentation of local plus remote scenes on head-mounted displays to each of the participants Other tasks: image generation, head and hand tracking, etc. are easy by comparison

6 Solution: Work on an easier problem first Eliminate need for head-mounted display Reduce need of scene capture to smaller regions of the rooms to reconstruction (and viewing) from fewer places New, easier problem: Advancing teleconference-based TELECOLLABORATIONS toward TELEPRESENCE

7 Our Vision of Telecollaboration: A Normal Office

8 Our Vision of Telecollaboration: Overlapped Projected Displays

9 Our Vision of Telecollaboration: Seeing and Manipulating Objects Stereo via shutter / prescription glasses Displays can light up and cover the entire room

10 Our Vision of Telecollaboration: Being There Together

11 What Will It Take: major areas Displays: fixed, not head-mounted 3D scene capture Image generation system Tracking system

12 Displays: New opportunities with Micromirror-based displays Physical micro-mirrors on custom IC 800 x 600 pixel resolution typical Commercial product from Texas Instruments One bit of memory behind each mirror Consider it as part of the memory-space of the graphics system, not as a separate projector Use for both display and for (lighting to aid) scene capture

13 Displays: Fixed, large visual area Adapt to user s own environment Large area High resolution Bright / High contrast (Increased demand on image generation) Lot more pixels Adapt to custom screen geometries

14 Video of 3D Talking Heads Rapid depth extraction via structured light reduces problem of finding corresponding points in multiple camera images Light patterns made nearly imperceptible by projecting complementary patterns very rapidly

15 From Images to Geometry: A New Paradigm for 3D Computer Graphics Geometry Images Light-Field Rendering geometric models Lumigraph texture mapping depth maps ( 3D fax ) 3D talking heads Talisman QuickTime VR (not 3D)

16 Image-Based Rendering, Inverse Rendering (from J.Arvo) Inverse Rendering Images New images Interpolation New images can be obtained by interpolating

17 Post-Rendering Warp Past Viewpoint Warp Current Viewpoint Warp Predicted Future Viewpoint

18 Video of Post Rendering Warp.

19 Image Generation: High-performance Graphics Computers Now: screen subdivision (~SGI RE, UNC Pixel-Planes 5) Next: z-compositing final images (UNC PixelFlow) G G G G G G G G Geometry Processors R R R R R R R R Rasterization Processors C C C C Z-priority Compositors

20 Object Parallel by Image Composition Renderer Multiple Independent Primitive Streams Geometry Processor Geometry Processor Rasterizer Rasterizer Frame Buffer Frame Buffer C C Image Composition Network: C's do visibility test on pixels between top and left. Geometry Processor Rasterizer Frame Buffer C Geometry Processor Rasterizer Frame Buffer C Renderers send visibility & color data into network

21 ImageFlow Departure from polygon-based rendering History of rendering: lines, polygons, texture, depth (our belief) Warp images based on depth value at each image sample Input from cameras Preliminary design begun

22 Tracking user s head Difficulty with commercial trackers Image-based tracking / hybrid tracking new difficulty: keeping tracking targets in view Predictive tracking (Ron Azuma: possible for 50-60ms)

23 The HiBall Tracker Second generation ceiling tracker Ceiling tiles completed and installed simple drop-in acoustical tiles enabled by Brown, Caltech, UNC collaboration Design and fabrication at UNC and Utah System functioning 2KHz estimates (0.5 ms latency) 0.1 mm RMS position noise 0.02 degree RMS orientation noise

24 HiBall: photo

25 SCAAT Autocalibration: ceiling photo & LED calibrations

26 Video of UNC HiBall Tracker

27 Being There : in 5-10 years Key: Acquire and Display EVERY mm EVERY sec ( end )

28 Video of Walking around Leonard s Yard Illustrated photographic feel of rendering from image input For each pixel in 360-degree panorama gets a depth/disparity value

29 New Custom Head-mounted Display (D D Colucci, K Keller, R Video see-through to correctly merge real & synthetic parts of the scene (esp. occlusion) Video cameras optically at user s eye positions Unobstructed view except for display Flip-up / flip-down David Casalino, MD

30 Displays (2 of 2): Head-mounted Comfortable See-through (usually) Optical: cheap, easy; can t combine real and virtual Video: bulky, esp. for wide field of view Field of view Brightness / Resolution

31 Laparoscopic Visualization (with Anthony Meyer, MD, PhD) Goal: view from surgeon s normal point of view -. - as with open surgery Key challenge: extract 3D range image from. laparoscopic camera. Initial experiment. Pre-experiment:. mechanically. scanned 3D surface. of. medical model During. experiment:. mapped.. live laparoscopic camera video onto the 3D surface

32 Our Vision of Telecollaboration: Being There Together Shared CAD & Visualization Modeling Interaction Rendering Image Generation Scene Acquisition Displays Tracking Networking

33 Needing to Know Depth within Video Images Needed to extract 3D remote environment Postrendering warp: widely applicable to speed-up image generation frame rate

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