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SIGGRAPH's Emerging Technologies To Explore Enhancing Life

ACM SIGGRAPH announced the content of the Emerging Technologies exhibition for SIGGRAPH 2004, the 31st International Conference on Computer Graphics and Techniques, being held Aug. 8 -12 at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The SIGGRAPH 2004 Emerging Technologies exhibition will feature 28 interactive installations from research labs, universities, independent artists and industry that explore the theme of enhancing life.

"In our daily routine we are surrounded by technology that enhances our life in many ways, both physically and psychologically," said Heather Elliott-Famularo, SIGGRAPH 2004 Emerging Technologies chair from Bowling Green State University. "The SIGGRAPH 2004 Emerging Technologies exhibition showcases virtual and augmented reality, imaging and video technology, interactive displays, robotics, mobile communication, realtime graphics, sensors, haptics, wearables and interactive fine art installations that may enhance our lives in the near and distant future."

Highlights from SIGGRAPH 2004 Emerging Technologies:

* CirculaFloor, a locomotion interface created by a group of movable floors that employ a holonomic mechanism to achieve omni-directional motion. Circulation of the floors enables the user to maintain their position while walking in a virtual environment, allowing them to walk in any direction in the virtual world.

* Nonphotorealistic Camera, a multi-flash camera that automatically generates stylized images and videos. It enhances the imagery to make it easy to understand the relative depth, or 3D structure, of the objects in the scene. The approach is inspired by techniques used by digital artists to make images more comprehensible by accentuating important features and reducing visual clutter. The system works well in low-contrast conditions such as imaging mechanical parts, plants or human surgery, and can also be used to stylize imaging in art and entertainment.

* The Invisible Train, a collaborative, multiplayer game that extends Augmented Reality to mobile devices. The game environment consists of a miniature wooden railroad track outfitted with fiducial markers for visual post-tracking. Unlike common toy trains however, the actual wagons have been replaced with virtual ones that are visible to users only through their PDA display. Players control the game by changing speed and operating track switches, altering the paths of their virtual trains. In a multiplayer game, each player is assigned her own train and tries to prevent them from colliding. The game state is shared between clients and synchronized by wireless networking. The game ends after a certain time has elapsed or when players collide.

SIGGRAPH 2004 Emerging Technologies opens Aug. 8 at 1:00 pm and closes Aug. 12 at 5:00 pm. For more information on the work being shown, visit http://www.siggraph.org/s2004/conference/etech/index2.php?=conference.

ACM SIGGRAPH, the leading professional society for computer graphics and interactive techniques, sponsors SIGGRAPH 2004. Information on ACM SIGGRAPH membership and other conferences and activities can be found at www.siggraph.org.

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