Undergraduate Research at the Vis Center

Imagining the Future

During the week, we met up with the guys working on the content for the 3D projection program, and we had a long talk about what could be displayed, how it could and should be displayed, and how to interact with it.  That’s when we decided to introduce the Microsoft Kinect into the project: imagining an entire workspace (or even at home), where interactions with the system are controlled by one’s own movements.  That sent my mind racing… the possibilities, the challenges, the excitement… But, as with everything (and one of my favorite quotes), “Significance is cumulative – but not always obvious.”  Meaning we have to start small, with the bits and pieces that, when merged, will realize that future vision of an interactive motion-sensing space.  Which leads to the focus of the research we will be doing: how do we begin building this smart place that recognizes and reacts to one’s movements?  As is usual when working in a team, each member makes one of those pieces his/her own.

In my case, I’m happy to be working with the interactivity of the Kinect, which produces a research question on a more personal level:

How can we create a basic system that recognizes intuitive gestures and reacts to them accordingly; a system which we can improve later to make it more complete and more interactive?