To look into the depth

The photo and experiment studio

After the last episode of technical trolling, our amazing team are set against a gigantic obstacle, where HTC vive constituted a significant resistance to the minds of Niels, Gunnar, and Mike, but through guidance and discussions with our Blacksmith, they will be able to find a new path that can lead them towards the goal.

This time we were set on using depth cameras, which helps us to measure the distance of an image with depth technology and active infrared (IR). Our depth camera uses depth sensors, an RGB sensor, and an infrared projector. We have an idea that several perspectives and angles would allow the camera to follow the movement and create a more accurate and detailed picture than we were able to achieve in our previous experiments. Something that should be noted is that the cameras’ updated application programming interface (API) made it easier for us to pair the two cameras. Hence, it was a great occasion to use two cameras this time. In this experiment, the cameras were used both in the physical room and in the 3D-room, which meant that our tech savages had to work with matching the positions in boh the 3D-room and the physical room. They successfully connected the cameras, HTC Vive and the trackers to a computer and to the programming software Unity. The HTC Vive and the trackers were a good aid to reproduce mobile position data, which made it easier for any of the cameras to be moved. The use of the tracking system enabled us to get a rough calibration and provided a basic calibration, but still a fine calibration was required to provide a true mirrored image in the 3D space. Part of the calibration of the camera was that they created a maximum area that the camera could use. The key word in this test was calibration, calibration, CALIBRATION!

Gunnar and Mike worked to calibrate the cameras manually both in the current position and with respect to the rotation. However, it is very difficult to get the calibration really good when doing it manually. In this case one needs to know exact positions in the physical space and the camera’s rotation. Something else that became problematic was the recording. The recording on both cameras did not start simultaneously, which caused a shift in the recorded image. One problem is also that the recorded files are very large and thus it becomes demanding to perform any form of editing. Hence, neither the recording nor the playback was optimal at this time.

Something that was spectacular however, was the visual experience where the viewer was able to meet his/ her external form. Like Narcissus caught in the 3d mirror image the viewer was filled with curiosity to the pictured self. Yes, I promise it was a splendid view and hard to be separated from this beautiful creation.

 

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