CWI develops prototype for '3D-based Skype'

Researchers from Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica (CWI) in Amsterdam and Queen Mary, University of London (QMUL) have devised a prototype system that can efficiently stream live-constructed 3D representations. This Tele-Immersion system enables three-dimensional 'Skype-like' communication between remote users.

Publication date: 11-03-2013

Researchers from Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica (CWI) in Amsterdam and Queen Mary, University of London (QMUL) have devised a prototype system that can efficiently stream live-constructed 3D representations. This Tele-Immersion system enables three-dimensional 'Skype-like' communication between remote users. The article describing the system was selected as Best Paper on 3D Technology and Multimedia at the ACM Multimedia Systems Conference (MMsys) in Oslo earlier this month.

3D Tele-Immersion enables participants in remote locations to share an activity in real-time. The paper by CWI researchers Rufael Mekuria, Dick Bulterman and Pablo Cesar and QMUL colleagues Michele Sanna, Stefano Asioli and Ebroul Izquierdo describes a complete 3D Tele-Immersion system based on streaming ‘triangle meshes’, live-reconstructed 3D representations.

It includes a fast codec for compressing triangle meshes that can achieve real-time encoding, and an implementation of rateless codes for real-time transmission. These components have been succesfully integrated into a larger tele-immersion environment that includes beyond state-of-the-art 3D reconstruction and rendering modules. The resulting prototype can capture, compress, transmit and render triangle mesh geometries (see image) in real-time over the Internet.

This research is part of the EU-funded REVERIE project. The REVERIE (REal and Virtual Engagement in Realistic Immersive Environments) project believes that the time is ripe to push social networking towards the next logical step in its evolution: immersive collaborative environments that support realistic inter‐personal communication. Recent scientific advances in a variety of different research fields, represented within REVERIE, means that it is now possible to integrate research outputs towards technologies that support real‐time realistic interaction between humans in online virtual & immersive environments. In this way, the ambitious ideas of tele-immersion will come within reach of the next generation of Internet users.

Image: Examples of Live-Captured Mesh Geometries, transmitted in real-time

 

More information:

Homepage Distributed & Interactive Systems group
Homepage Pablo Cesar
Homepage REVERIE project