Entering the HIVE (Highly-portable Immersive Virtual Environment) with NASA

Today's another inspiration video show off how the NASA Langley Research Center is using the Kinect to create the HIVE... I find it pretty awesome just how broad and varied the scenarios where the Kinect for Windows sensor and SDK are being used (and come on, it's NASA! Smiley

Inside the HIVE (Highly-portable Immersive Virtual Environment)

Team Location: NASA Langley Research Center

Authors: Nathan Walker, Jasmine Walker, James Farmer, Jeremiah Dunn, Matei Bivolaru, Shawn Martin

Advisors/Science Mentors: Nelson Hillyer

Abstract: The Highly-portable Immersive Virtual Environment (HIVE) uses stereographic shutter glasses to create a 3D environment to display 3D models and complex information. The design allows for ease of disassembly and transportation to deliver visualizations wherever they are needed. For the 2011 summer term, the HIVE team worked on forming a partnership with SERVIR to display near real-time environmental data such as MODIS fire data from the Fire Information for Resource Management System (FIRMS) and earthquake locations from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). As part of the HIVE’s continuing goal to keep up to date with the latest and greatest technologies, the HIVE team began research and implementation of different types of interaction and immersion. One implementation was a new environment using the Unity engine to create more immersive and dynamic scenes. Another implementation was continued research and integration of Microsoft’s Kinect with the newly released software development kit to provide motion controls and head-tracking.

DEVELOP’s HIVE on the Leading Edge of Natural User Interfacing

Team Location: NASA Langley Research Center

Authors: Nathan Walker, Jasmine Walker, William Taylor, Matei Bivolaru.

Other Acknowledgements: James Farmer, Jeremiah Dunn, Shawn Martin.

Abstract: The Highly-portable Immersive Virtual Environment (HIVE) uses stereographic shutter glasses to create a 3D environment to display various models or complex information. The design allows for easy disassembly and transportation to bring its visualizations wherever they are needed. The primary focus of the HIVE team during the Fall 2011 term was to perform several upgrades to the HIVE system. This included switching the HIVE from the antiquated Windows XP Operating System to the current Microsoft OS, Windows 7. The purpose of this switch was to allow for a more immersive user experience through the use of motion controls via the Microsoft Kinect and its Windows 7-specific Software Development Kit (SDK). The SDK grants access to the raw data streams of the Kinect and allows us to develop HIVE-specific gesture controls for a more natural user interface. This Natural User Interface (NUI) reduces the HIVE control learning curve to create a more user-friendly experience. By improving interaction with the HIVE, the visuals it displays will be more controllable and accessible to the general population, aiding the HIVE’s role as an information dispersal tool.

Project Information URL: http://www.earthzine.org/2011/08/10/inside-the-hive-highly-portable-immersive-virtual-environment/, http://www.earthzine.org/2011/11/10/develop%E2%80%99s-hive-on-the-leading-edge-of-natural-user-interfacing/

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