Friday, November 20, 2009

Field Trippin' ... Ka-BLUI!

"Vision without action is hallucination" - Don Clifton

Once again I opted to deviate from the normal routine and blow some minds at 8am down in the Discovery Lab of the Arctic Region Supercomputing Center. Hadn't been by for a visit since the spring semester, and this crew had both enough latent potential waiting for alternative inspiration and a handful of bored folks who probably appreciated the break from their pen & ink pages.

After some mysterious warm-up sketches in the classroom of abstracted contour leaf-forms based on memory, we descended to the bowels of the Rasmusen library where our most excellent host Bob Huebert (thanks for the accommodation and the pics) ran the "BLUIsculpt" - Body Language User Interface - program so we could take turns trying our hand at drawing on an infinite canvas. Here's a description from the Discovery Lab's page:

"The ARSC Discovery Lab is a three dimensional, immersive, virtual reality environment hosting an MD Flying Flex™ system that can accommodate several researchers at once, allowing simultaneous exploration of the same data.

In the immersive environment, image generating computer systems draw stereoscopic images based on the perspective of a special tracker worn by the "driver." All other participants wear active 3D glasses, and are able to view the same images from slightly different perspectives. The "driver" interacts with and controls the virtual environment using a hand-held, wireless, input device. Fully integrated, high-quality audio completes the user experience."

Whoah... some mornings it just doesn't matter how much coffee you drink.

"Cyberspace. A consensual hallucination experienced daily by billions of legitimate operators, in every nation, by children being taught mathematical concepts." - William Gibson

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