When I begin to move the peg, a virtual cone appears over the target hole, along with a virtual surface easing toward it. I can feel the surface as I slide the peg along it toward the cone and into the hole. And it worked. These days, virtual-reality experts look back on the platform as the first interactive augmented-reality system that enabled users to engage simultaneously with real and virtual objects in a single immersive reality.
The project began in , when I pitched the effort as part of my doctoral research at Stanford University. And I had collected enough data from human testing to definitively show that augmenting a real workspace with virtual objects could significantly enhance user performance in precision tasks.
Given the short time frame, it might sound like all went smoothly, but the project came close to getting derailed many times, thanks to a tight budget and substantial equipment needs. In fact, the effort might have crashed early on, had a parachute—a real one, not a virtual one—not failed to open in the clear blue skies over Dayton, Ohio, during the summer of Thirty years ago, the field of virtual reality was in its infancy, the phrase itself having only been coined in by Jaron Lanier , who was commercializing some of the first headsets and gloves.
His work built on earlier research by Ivan Sutherland , who pioneered head-mounted display technology and head-tracking, two critical elements that sparked the VR field. Augmented reality AR —that is, combining the real world and the virtual world into a single immersive and interactive reality—did not yet exist in a meaningful way.
At Stanford, I worked in the Center for Design Research , a group focused on the intersection of humans and technology that created some of the very early VR gloves, immersive vision systems, and 3D audio systems. Of course, knowing how to create a quality VR experience and being able to produce it are not the same thing. The best PCs on the market back then used Intel processors running at 33 megahertz.
So, though researchers working in VR during the late 80s and early 90s were doing groundbreaking work, the crude graphics, bulky headsets, and lag so bad it made people dizzy or nauseous plagued the resulting virtual experiences. These early drawings of a real pegboard combined with virtual overlays generated by a computer—an early version of augmented reality—were created by Louis Rosenberg as part of his Virtual Fixtures project.
Louis Rosenberg. I was conducting a research project at NASA to optimize depth perception in early 3D-vision systems, and I was one of those people getting dizzy from the lag. And I found that the images created back then were definitely virtual but far from reality. Instead, I was concerned about how enclosed and isolated the VR experience made me feel. I wished I could expand the technology, taking the power of VR and unleashing it into the real world. I dreamed of creating a merged reality where virtual objects inhabited your physical surroundings in such an authentic manner that they seemed like genuine parts of the world around you, enabling you to reach out and interact as if they were actually there.
Neither of these merged realities were the slightest bit immersive, presenting images on a flat plane rather than connected to the real world in 3D space. But they hinted at interesting possibilities. I thought I could move far beyond simple crosshairs and text on a flat plane to create virtual objects that could be spatially registered to real objects in an ordinary environment. And I hoped to instill those virtual objects with realistic physical properties.
The board shown here was real, the cones that helped guide the user to the correct holes virtual. To explain the practical value of merging real and virtual worlds, I used the analogy of a simple metal ruler.
Or you can grab a ruler and do it much quicker with far less mental effort. Now imagine that instead of a real ruler, you could grab a virtual ruler and make it instantly appear in the real world, perfectly registered to your real surroundings. And imagine that this virtual ruler feels physically authentic—so much so that you can use it to guide your real pencil. Of course, the ruler was just an analogy.
The applications I pitched to the Air Force ranged from augmented manufacturing to surgery. For example, consider a surgeon who needs to make a dangerous incision. She could use a bulky metal fixture to steady her hand and avoid vital organs. Or we could invent something new to augment the surgery—a virtual fixture to guide her real scalpel, not just visually but physically.
For example, a technician on Earth could repair a satellite by controlling a robot remotely, assisted by virtual fixtures added to video images of the real worksite. The Air Force agreed to provide enough funding to cover my expenses at Stanford along with a small budget for equipment. And what became known as the Virtual Fixtures Project came to life, working toward building a prototype that could be rigorously tested with human subjects. And I became a roving researcher, developing core ideas at Stanford, fleshing out some of the underlying technologies at NASA Ames, and assembling the full system at Wright-Patterson.
In this sketch of his augmented-reality system, Louis Rosenberg shows a user of the Virtual Fixtures platform wearing a partial exoskeleton and peering at a real pegboard augmented with cone-shaped virtual fixtures. As a young researcher in my early twenties, I was eager to learn about the many projects going on around me at these various laboratories. One effort I followed closely at Wright-Patterson was a project designing new parachutes. Instead, they attached the parachutes to dummy rigs fitted with sensors and instrumentation.
Two engineers would go up in an airplane with the hardware, dropping rigs and jumping alongside so they could observe how the chutes unfolded. Back at the Virtual Fixtures effort, I aimed to prove the basic concept—that a real workspace could be augmented with virtual objects that feel so real, they could assist users as they performed dexterous manual tasks. To test the idea, I wasn't going to have users perform surgery or repair satellites.
Instead, I needed a simple repeatable task to quantify manual performance. The Air Force already had a standardized task it had used for years to test human dexterity under a variety of mental and physical stresses. So I began assembling a system that would enable virtual fixtures to be merged with a real pegboard, creating a mixed-reality experience perfectly registered in 3D space. I aimed to make these virtual objects feel so real that bumping the real peg into a virtual fixture would feel as authentic as bumping into the actual board.
I wrote software to simulate a wide range of virtual fixtures, from simple surfaces that prevented your hand from overshooting a target hole, to carefully shaped cones that could help a user guide the real peg into the real hole. I created virtual overlays that simulated textures and had corresponding sounds, even overlays that simulated pushing through a thick liquid as it it were virtual honey. One imagined use for augmented reality at the time of its creation was in surgery.
Today, augmented reality is used for surgical training, and surgeons are beginning to use it in the operating room. To accurately align these virtual elements with the real pegboard, I needed high-quality video cameras. Video cameras at the time were far more expensive than they are today, and I had no money left in my budget to buy them.
It seemed like every research project needed them, most of far higher priority than mine. Which brings me back to the skydiving engineers testing experimental parachutes. These engineers came into the lab one day to chat; they mentioned that their chute had failed to open, their dummy rig plummeting to the ground and destroying all the sensors and cameras aboard.
This seemed like it would be a setback for my project as well, because I knew if there were any extra cameras in the building, the engineers would get them. But then I asked if I could take a look at the wreckage from their failed test. It was a mangled mess of bent metal, dangling circuits, and smashed cameras. Still, though the cameras looked awful with cracked cases and damaged lenses, I wondered if I could get any of them to work well enough for my needs.
By some miracle, I was able to piece together two working units from the six that had plummeted to the ground. And so, the first human testing of an interactive augmented-reality system was made possible by cameras that had literally fallen out of the sky and smashed into the earth.
The same was true for the Virtual Fixtures system. But thanks to the cameras from that failed parachute rig, I was able to create a mixed reality with accurate spatial registration, providing an immersive experience in which you could reach out and interact with the real and virtual environments simultaneously. As for the experimental part of the project, I conducted a series of human studies in which users experienced a variety of virtual fixtures overlaid onto their perception of the real task board.
For the users, it felt as if the peg had snapped to the surface. Then they could glide along it until they chose to yank free with another snap. Trial Try full digital access and see why over 1 million readers subscribe to the FT. For 4 weeks receive unlimited Premium digital access to the FT's trusted, award-winning business news. Digital Be informed with the essential news and opinion.
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Will season one be the end of Bigfoot Bounty? Wonder if Joshua P. Enter your email address to subscribe to this journal and receive notifications of new posts by email. Email Address:. Sign me up! Again we go to Mr. Like this: Like Loading Hey gang! Thoughts Well another week, and the Bigfoot Bounty is barreling on, seeing yet another team eliminated. Is he on tour now??? Ah the speculation. Till Next Time, Squatch-D.
Follow Squatchdetective's Blog on WordPress. Join 6, other followers. One of the first men I met in the field was Jc. He had more knowledge and expertise than anyone else I would come to meet in Sasquatch. He knew the southwest like the back of his hand, and like me, he had formal training in the ways of the Medicine Man. I will always be thankful for the advice and time he gave me as a fellow researcher. God Speed Jc, your Spirit Horse awaits you!
Prayers and condolences go out to all the other members, friends and family of JC! A very worldly, open-minded man, that has been with us since the beginning of our journey and a huge mentor in our life. Will miss you big guy and see you on the other side! Jc Johnson was the real deal. A extremely kind and wonderful person. Thank you for all of your thoughts and prayers. My dad put up one hell of a fight. Around today he passed away. I am in shock and am utterly heartbroken.
I love you, dad. I only just heard about this. He was a great colleague and wonderful friend whom I met while on Facebook.
In June of , Two Paranormal Investigators, were investigating a case. They were looking for "Brass" along some railroad tracks in a rural, desert area when they came upon what they describe as a "Woman in her 20's, wearing 6-inch stiletto heels, and torn, up denim clothing" out in the middle of no where. She was walking in the bushes along a railroad access road. If it was one of the men, walking they would have been walking on the railroad access road, but she was walking in the bushes, along this road.
Being polite since they were in the middle of no where they stopped and asked the woman if she was alright. She turned to reply, and told them something like " No, I'm fine", and made eye contact with the men. Taking to Twitter today, Dorsey answered a couple questions posed by a Twitter user: Was Musk investing contingent on Dorsey leaving?
Did Dorsey leave because of Musk? Most Americans have less in their retirement accounts than they'd like, and much less than the rules say they should have. So, obviously, if that describes you then you're not alone. In this article, we discuss the 10 stocks that Jim Cramer says you should sell. The finance world is abuzz with news that Tesla, Inc. On April 8, the company officially spun off Warner Bros. Discovery WBD. Bloomberg -- Twitter Inc. High-dividend stocks can mislead. Here's a smart way to find stable stocks with high dividends.
Watch seven dividend payers on IBD's radar. Earlier this week, I wrote about Musk's penchant for humor. Jamie Dimon was once convinced this year would see a booming economy, but not even he can stand in the way of the forces destabilizing the global economy. While the EU debates whether to slap sanctions on Russian gas and oil and member states seek supplies from elsewhere, the Kremlin has been forging closer ties with China, the world's top energy consumer, and other Asian countries.
In this article, we discuss the 10 technology stocks to buy now according to Stanley Druckenmiller. If you want to read about some more stocks in the Druckenmiller portfolio, go directly to 5 Technology Stocks to Buy Now According to Stanley Druckenmiller. Technology stocks have taken a beating in the past few months on the […]. Peloton will boost the price of its all-access membership for U. Apple has been an American success story several times over with the Mac, iPod, iPhone and other inventions.
But is Apple stock a buy now? On Friday, three days ahead of tax day for most Americans, President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris released the completed tax returns from their first year in office. Software giant Microsoft has earned plaudits for its successful pivot from desktop computing to cloud computing. Many investors may be wondering: Is Microsoft stock a buy right now?
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